Sermon & Small Group Resources
This is the seventh sermon in our series looking at 1 Thessalonians. Preacher: The Rev’d David Browne. Bible Reading: 1 Thessalonians 5
Next Steps this Week
BIBLE READING: 1 Thessalonians 5
Now, brothers and sisters, about times and dates we do not need to write to you, for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, “Peace and safety,” destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.
But you, brothers and sisters, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief. You are all children of the light and children of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness. So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be awake and sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet. For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him. Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.
Now we ask you, brothers and sisters, to acknowledge those who work hard among you, who care for you in the Lord and who admonish you. Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other. And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone. Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
Do not quench the Spirit. Do not treat prophecies with contempt 21 but test them all; hold on to what is good, reject every kind of evil.
May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.
Brothers and sisters, pray for us. Greet all God’s people with a holy kiss. I charge you before the Lord to have this letter read to all the brothers and sisters.
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.
SMALL GROUP QUESTIONS
CONNECT: How can you be reminded – every single day – that Jesus will return? (Try to think of something really practical that can form part of your daily rhythm of life.)
Do you have anyone in your life who is preparing for something big in the future? How do they go about their preparations?
What do people in our world believe about the end of the world? Is it helpful to think about the end?
READ 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11
Why do you think Paul writes, in v.1, that ‘about times and dates we don’t need to write to you’?
What analogies does Paul use for the ‘day of the Lord’? What do you think he’s trying to say?
What are some of the contrasts drawn in v.4-11? What are we being told about how we should live?
What are the privileges and responsibilities of being ‘in the know’ about Jesus’ return?
READ 1 Thessalonians 5:12-22
How wIn these final verses Paul gives words of encouragement. How many encouragements can you find?
Who are verses 12-14 about? What does this say about such people in churches today?
What are the parallels between Jesus’ teaching (see Matthew 5:43-48; Mark 12:30-31; Luke 6:27-36; John 13:34) and Paul’s teaching in these verses?
Do v.16-18 mean we have to be happy all the time? Do you know someone who lives this out?
What is Paul teaching about the Holy Spirit and prophecy in v.19-21? How should we respond when someone says they have heard something from God?
READ 1 Thessalonians 5:23-28
What do v.23-28 tell us about the way Christians are to care for each other?
Outline the logic that convinces us that when we suffer it means that God doesn’t care. What are the holes in this logic?
What is sanctification and what value does it hold for Christians?
A ‘holy kiss’ was a form of greeting in the ancient world. How can we greet people in a way that conveys God’s love but doesn’t freak them out or give them the wrong idea today?
What have been the challenges and highlights of our 1 Thessalonians series for you?
APPLY This Week: What are some applications that you can take from our 1 Thessalonians series that will help you live in preparation for Jesus return?
Loving Heavenly Father, thank you that you are always faithful and always keep your promises. Thank you for the hope found in Christ’s death, resurrection, and his promise to return in glory. Help us, by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, to live in light of Jesus’ return and to serve you with gladness. Amen!
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