Each week we LIVESTREAM the Lord's Day Sabbath School at 10a, Lord's Day morning public worship at 11a, and Lord's Day p.m. singing (3p) and sermon (3:45), and the Midweek Sermon and Prayer Meeting at 6:30p on Wednesday

Thursday, June 30, 2022

2022.06.30 Hopewell @Home ▫ 2 Thessalonians 1:11–12

Read 2 Thessalonians 1:11–12

Questions from the Scripture text: What does the apostolic team do (2 Thessalonians 1:11)? How often? That God would count the Thessalonians as what? And that God would fulfill what? With what sort of works from them? For what Name (2 Thessalonians 1:12)? That what might happen to that Name? in whom? And who else would be glorified in Whom? According to what?

What is an apostolic way of praying for believers who are enduring persecution?  2 Thessalonians 1:11–12 looks forward to the second serial reading in morning public worship on the coming Lord’s Day. In these two verses of Holy Scripture, the Holy Spirit teaches us that when believers are suffering persecution, one of the main things to pray for them is for their holiness. 

The previous six verses had described God’s goodness to count the Thessalonians worthy of the kingdom for which they suffered (2 Thessalonians 1:5). Now, the apostle prays for them to receive that very thing. The “His” in 2 Thessalonians 1:11 is supplied by our translators, but it is not in the original. The apostle might be praying that God would fulfill all the goodness that pleases Him. But, it reads more naturally that by His power, He would fulfill every one of their good pleasures that comes from their faith. 

That is to say that even as it is God Who has given them faith, and it is God Who has given them whatever good desires they have, so also it must be God Who supplies the power by which they can act from this faith and good desire. If we want others to do good works, then it is well to tell them what good works are and to urge them to do them. But it is even more vital to pray for them, for it is God who “fulfills” it all by His power.

If our ultimate goal is “that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified,” then this is how we will pray for believers under pressure. That this opportunity to see Christ’s glory shine in their actions would be fulfilled. Indeed, it is an extraordinary grace of God that His chosen way of being glorified in believers is that believers would be glorified in Him. In Jesus, the Thessalonian believers would be empowered to believe and to do that which is good. This is glorious! And by doing so in them, Jesus would show Himself glorious.

There is no room here for questioning God’s providence in persecution. The apostle, and those who follow him by the same Spirit, will be too busy marveling at “the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ” and praying that that He would be glorified for it.

What difficult situation are you in? For what desire for good or work of faith does this situation present an opportunity? How would Jesus be glorified in you through this? How would you be glorified in Him? 

Sample prayer:  Lord, when we are suffering we often forget that we are being counted worthy to suffer for the kingdom and to live for Your kingdom. Forgive us for missing opportunities to show Your glory in our good purposes and works of faith. Turn our hearts toward glorifying You, and fulfill those good desires, we ask, through Christ, AMEN!

Suggested songs: ARP1 “How Blessed the Man” or TPH433 “Amazing Grace”

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