and may the Lord cause you to increase and abound in love for one another, and for all people, just as we also do for you;1 Thessalonians 3:12(NASB)
Paul made no secret of His great love and concern for the believers in Thessalonica. Indeed, throughout all His writings, this dear apostle had a deep affection and sincere concern for all the Body of Christ.
This particular letter holds a very special place in the canon of Scripture, as it is said to be the first letter of instruction and encouragement that the apostle Paul wrote to any Church. In it, he set out the principles and practice for a good and godly Christian life. He wrote to remind them of the hope of rewards at Christ's return.
Paul's epistles are filled with wise instruction on how to live the sanctified life of a normal Christian, and often include the names of other brothers and sisters in the faith who laboured with him in spreading abroad the gospel of grace. One person that Paul named in certain epistles, is Timothy.
Paul knew that the Thessalonian believers had been undergoing some severe persecution and was anxious for their well-being and so he entrusted Timothy, his faithful fellow-worker, to travel to Thessalonica. Timothy was sent to find out how the believers there were getting along, to establish them in the faith, and give them spiritual support and godly encouragement.
Paul rejoiced when Timothy returned with the joyful tidings that they were being established in the faith and well-grounded in the Word, despite the many difficulties and distresses they were facing: "May the Lord cause you to increase in your faith and abound in your love for one another and for all people," was Paul's heartfelt prayer for them all, "just as we also do for you."
Paul continued in prayers and loving intercessions for the saints at Thessalonica, beseeching God the Father Himself and Jesus our Lord to direct and govern their ways.
May we be like Paul, and remember to lift up our fellow Christian brothers and sisters in continuous and loving prayer and heartfelt intercessions. Let us pray that their hearts would be also established in the Lord and blameless before Him and that they would walk in holiness before our God and Father, encouraging one another as they look for the any-day appearance of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
Heavenly Father, thank You for the Scriptures. Thank You for the truths they contain and the lessons I can learn from them. Guide me into all truth and help me to abound in love toward my brothers and sisters in Christ. Help me to be proactive in my prayers, established in the faith, and faithful in interceding for all the Body of Christ. May I ever hope in the Lord and look for His any day return, when He comes to take us to be with Himself. In Jesus' name, AMEN.
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