The letter to the Thessalonians has opened with a beautiful picture of how to receive the gospel in the face of trials and suffering. Paul and Silas are thankful for the work of faith, labor of love, and steadfastness of hope that has been displayed by these Christians, even though they are suffering much affliction by the hands of their own people in the city. Paul’s encouragement to these Christians has been grounded on the hope of eternity. We noted at the start of this series that every chapter in this letter refers to the second coming of Christ and what we will enjoy at his return. These Christians have been imitators of Paul and the Lord by receiving the word of God with joy even in the face of great affliction. Thus, their faith has sounded forth everywhere, becoming an example to all believers in the surrounding regions. In the rest of this paragraph we are going to notice how else our view of eternity is to change how we live in this life.
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