Book 52 1 Thessalonians 001:001 Paul, Silas, and Timothy: To the Church of the Thessalonians which is in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. May grace and peace be granted to you. 001:002 We continually give thanks to God because of you all, while we make mention of you in our prayers. 001:003 For we never fail to remember your works of faith and labours of love and your persistent and unwavering hope in our Lord Jesus Christ in the presence of our God and Father; 001:004 knowing as we do, brethren, that you are beloved by God and that He has chosen you. 001:005 The Good News that we brought you did not come to you in words only, but also with power and with the Holy Spirit and with much certainty, for you know the sort of men we became among you, as examples for your sakes. 001:006 And you followed the pattern set you by us and by the Master, after you had received the Message amid severe persecution, and yet with the joy which the Holy Spirit gives, 001:007 so that you became a pattern to all the believers throughout Macedonia and Greece. 001:008 For it was not only from you that the Master's Message sounded forth throughout Macedonia and Greece; but everywhere your faith in God has become known, so that it is unnecessary for us to say anything about it. 001:009 For when others speak of us they report the reception we had from you, and how you turned from your idols to God, to be bondservants of the true and ever-living God, 001:010 and to await the return from Heaven of His Son, whom He raised from among the dead—even Jesus, our Deliverer from God's coming anger. 002:001 For you yourselves, brethren, know that our visit to you did not fail of its purpose. 002:002 But, as you will remember, after we had already met with suffering and outrage at Philippi, we summoned up boldness, by the help of our God, to tell you God's Good News amid much opposition. 002:003 For our preaching was not grounded on a delusion, nor prompted by mingled motives, nor was there fraud in it. 002:004 But as God tested and approved us before entrusting us with His Good News, so in what we say we are seeking not to please men but to please God, who tests and approves our motives. 002:005 For, as you are well aware, we have never used the language of flattery nor have we found pretexts for enriching ourselves— God is our witness; 002:006 nor did we seek glory either from you or from any other mere men, although we might have stood on our dignity as Christ's Apostles. 002:007 On the contrary, in our relations to you we showed ourselves as gentle as a mother is when she tenderly nurses her own children. 002:008 Seeing that we were thus drawn affectionately towards you, it would have been a joy to us to have imparted to you not only God's Good News, but to have given our very lives also, because you had become very dear to us. 002:009 For you remember, brethren, our labour and toil: how, working night and day so as not to become a burden to any one of you, we came and proclaimed among you God's Good News. 002:010 You yourselves are witnesses—and God is witness—how holy and upright and blameless our dealings with you believers were. 002:011 For you know that we acted towards every one of you as a father does towards his own children, encouraging and cheering you, 002:012 and imploring you to live lives worthy of fellowship with God who is inviting you to share His own Kingship and glory. 002:013 And for this further reason we render unceasing thanks to God, that when you received God's Message from our lips, it was as no mere message from men that you embraced it, but as— what it really is—God's Message, which also does its work in the hearts of you who believe. 002:014 For you, brethren, followed the example of the Churches of God in Christ Jesus which are in Judaea; seeing that you endured the same ill-treatment at the hands of your countrymen, as they did at the hands of the Jews. 002:015 Those Jewish persecutors killed both the Lord Jesus and the Prophets, and drove us out of their midst. They are displeasing to God, and are the enemies of all mankind; 002:016 for they still try to prevent our preaching to the Gentiles so that they may find salvation. They thus continually fill up the measure of their own sins, and God's anger in its severest form has overtaken them. 002:017 But we, brethren, having been for a short time separated from you in bodily presence, though not in heart, endeavoured all the more earnestly, with intense longing, to see you face to face. 002:018 On this account we wanted to come to you—at least I Paul wanted again and again to do so—but Satan hindered us. 002:019 For what is our hope or joy, or the crown of which we boast? Is it not you yourselves in the presence of our Lord Jesus at His Coming? 002:020 Yes, you are our glory and our joy. 003:001 So when we could endure it no longer, we decided to remain behind in Athens alone; 003:002 and sent Timothy our brother and God's minister in the service of Christ's Good News, that he might help you spiritually and encourage you in your faith; 003:003 that none of you might be unnerved by your present trials: for you yourselves know that they are our appointed lot. 003:004 For even when we were with you, we forewarned you, saying, "We are soon to suffer affliction;" and this actually happened, as you well know. 003:005 For this reason I also, when I could no longer endure the uncertainty, sent to know the condition of your faith, lest perchance the Tempter might have tempted you and our labour have been lost. 003:006 But now that Timothy has recently come back to us from you, and has brought us the happy tidings of your faith and love, and has told us how you still cherish a constant and affectionate recollection of us, and are longing to see us as we also long to see you— 003:007 for this reason in our distress and trouble we have been comforted about you, brethren, by your faith. 003:008 For now life is for us life indeed, since you are standing fast in the Lord. 003:009 For what thanksgiving on your behalf can we possibly offer to God in return for all the joy which fills our souls before our God for you, 003:010 while night and day, with intense earnestness, we pray that we may see your faces, and may bring to perfection whatever may be still lacking in your faith? 003:011 But may our God and Father Himself—and our Lord Jesus— guide us on our way to you; 003:012 and as for you, may the Lord teach you to love one another and all men, with a growing and a glowing love, resembling our love for you. 003:013 Thus He will build up your characters, so that you will be faultlessly holy in the presence of our God and Father at the Coming of our Lord Jesus with all His holy ones. 004:001 Moreover, brethren, as you learnt from our lips the lives which you ought to live, and do live, so as to please God, we beg and exhort you in the name of the Lord Jesus to live them more and more truly. 004:002 For you know the commands which we laid upon you by the authority of the Lord Jesus. 004:003 For this is God's will—your purity of life, that you abstain from fornication; 004:004 that each man among you shall know how to procure a wife who shall be his own in purity and honour; 004:005 that you be not overmastered by lustful cravings, like the Gentiles who have no knowledge of God; 004:006 and that in this matter there be no encroaching on the rights of a brother Christian and no overreaching him. For the Lord is an avenger in all such cases, as we have already taught you and solemnly warned you. 004:007 God has not called us to an unclean life, but to one of purity. 004:008 Therefore a defiant spirit in such a case provokes not man but God, who puts His Holy Spirit into your hearts. 004:009 But on the subject of love for the brotherhood it is unnecessary for me to write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love one another; 004:010 and indeed you do love all the brethren throughout Macedonia. And we exhort you to do so more and more, 004:011 and to vie with one another in eagerness for peace, every one minding his own business and working with his hands, as we ordered you to do: 004:012 so as to live worthy lives in relation to outsiders, and not be a burden to any one. 004:013 Now, concerning those who from time to time pass away, we would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, lest you should mourn as others do who have no hope. 004:014 For if we believe that Jesus has died and risen again, we also believe that, through Jesus, God will bring with Him those who shall have passed away. 004:015 For this we declare to you on the Lord's own authority— that we who are alive and continue on earth until the Coming of the Lord, shall certainly not forestall those who shall have previously passed away. 004:016 For the Lord Himself will come down from Heaven with a loud word of command, and with an archangel's voice and the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 004:017 Afterwards we who are alive and are still on earth will be caught up in their company amid clouds to meet the Lord in the air. 004:018 And so we shall be with the Lord for ever. Therefore encourage one another with these words. 005:001 But as to times and dates it is unnecessary that anything be written to you. 005:002 For you yourselves know perfectly well that the day of the Lord comes like a thief in the night. 005:003 While they are saying "Peace and safety!" then in a moment destruction falls upon them, like birth-pains on a woman who is with child; and escape there is none. 005:004 But you, brethren, are not in darkness, that daylight should surprise you like a thief; 005:005 for all of you are sons of Light and sons of the day. We belong neither to the night nor to darkness. 005:006 So then let us not sleep, like the rest of the world, but let us keep awake and be sober. 005:007 For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who drink freely, drink at night. 005:008 But let us, belonging—as we do—to the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. 005:009 For God has not pre-destined us to meet His anger, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ; 005:010 who died on our behalf, so that whether we are awake or are sleeping we may share His Life. 005:011 Therefore encourage one another, and let each one help to strengthen his friend, as in fact you do. 005:012 Now we beg you, brethren, to show respect for those who labour among you and are your leaders in Christian work, and are your advisers; 005:013 and to esteem them very highly in love for their work's sake. Be at peace among yourselves. 005:014 And we exhort you, brethren, admonish the unruly, comfort the timid, sustain the weak, and be patient towards all. 005:015 See to it that no one ever repays another with evil for evil; but always seek opportunities of doing good both to one another and to all the world. 005:016 Be always joyful. 005:017 Be unceasing in prayer. 005:018 In every circumstance of life be thankful; for this is God's will in Christ Jesus respecting you. 005:019 Do not quench the Spirit. 005:020 Do not think meanly of utterances of prophecy; 005:021 but test all such, and retain hold of the good. 005:022 Hold yourselves aloof from every form of evil. 005:023 And may God Himself who gives peace, make you entirely holy; and may your spirits, souls and bodies be preserved complete and be found blameless at the Coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 005:024 Faithful is He who calls you, and He will also perfect His work. 005:025 Brethren, pray for us. 005:026 Greet all the brethren with a holy kiss. 005:027 I solemnly charge you in the Lord's name to have this Letter read to all the brethren. 005:028 May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.