Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Motivation for Benediction

“So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught, whether by word of mouth or by letter from us. Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us eternal comfort and good hope by grace, comfort and strengthen your hearts in every good work and word” (2:15-17). Paul prays this benediction of “comfort” and strength in the context of the Church’s obedience to the teaching of the apostle.

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“We have confidence in the Lord concerning you, that you are doing and will continue to do what we command” (2 Thessalonians 3:4).

“May the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the steadfastness of Christ” (3:5). Notice that this benediction concerning “the love of God” and the “steadfastness of Christ” is surrounded by 3:4,6 – a reminder that the Church obey the commands the apostle gives in the name of the Lord.

“Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from every brother who leads an unruly life and not according to the tradition which you received from us” (3:6).

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Lord, our desire is to read, hear, teach, and obey Your Word to Your glory – move our hearts to desire Your comfort, strength, and love to further this “Word-living” and not for our own selfish motivations.

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