Have You Missed the Train?

Paul opens 2 Thessalonians chapter two by expounding on the revelation of Christ and the gathering of believers into Him.  Apparently, some claimed the day of the Lord had come.  It’s not a stretch to imagine these same people suggested the Thessalonians were suffering because God rejected them and was judging them.   Paul urges…

Shhh! Don’t Tell the Governor or President!

Much of the world is living with restrictions because of coronavirus.  Like many others, I’ve struggled with all of this.  Every time guidelines/restrictions are added or changed, it takes time for me to process them and adjust.  I’ve seen myself go through some classic stages of grief: denial, anger, depression…I haven’t really bargained because there…

Love, not Law

The following appeared in our local paper’s religion column last weekend. It is a revision of a previous post, “Love, not Law”. The paper re-titled it “What Complete Freedom Means.” *** “Christ has liberated us to be free.  Stand firm then and don’t submit again to a yoke of slavery” (Gal. 5:1). Most Christians know…

Big Reveal

“To the called out Thessalonians in God our Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thess. 1:1). Paul starts his first and second letters to the Thessalonians with an almost identical address.  He is writing Thessalonians who were called out, who are now in God and Jesus.  Called out of the world and into…

Are You with Me?

While I was spending time with the Lord this week, He asked, “Are you with me?”  My first reaction was, “Is this one of those questions like when you asked Peter if he loved you?” I’m way more likely to overthink things than Peter.  There was no confident (over confident?), “You know I’m with you,…

The Kenosis Conundrum

“Make your own attitude that of Christ Jesus, who, existing in the form of God, did not consider equality with God as something to hold onto.  Instead He emptied Himself by assuming the form of a slave, taking on the likeness of men” (Php. 2:5-7). When Paul says Jesus emptied Himself, what does he mean?  Debates about this center on the Greek…

Unshaken

“His voice shook the earth at that time, but now He has promised, Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also heaven. This expression, ‘Yet once more,’ indicates the removal of what can be shaken…so that what is not shaken might remain.  Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us…

Jesus Is Coming. Look Busy.

Paul ends his letter to the Thessalonians with final instructions for the community. His directives culminate in verses 23 and 24: “Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely. And may your spirit, soul, and body be kept sound and blameless in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful, who also will…

King Virus

These days, it’s impossible to avoid hearing about coronavirus.  Corona means “crown.”  Recently, I found my mind drifting to the opening of the first seal in Revelation 6:2– “I looked, and there was a white horse. The horseman on it had a bow; a crown was given to him, and he went out as a victor…

Dead or Alive

“Since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, in the same way God will bring in union with Him those who have fallen asleep through Jesus” (1 Thess. 4:14). Paul has been talking with the Thessalonians about what they have suffered because of their belief in Jesus. His aim in writing is to connect the Thessalonians’…