1 Thessalonians 3:12-13
Verse 13 May He strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all His holy ones.
We ended our time together yesterday with the thought of how our willingness to accept biblical correction or rebuke speaks to our true heart towards God and His importance to us. While it isn’t something we go seeking it is important to accept it with humility. Proper correction and rebuking come from a place of love and should be received with the same loving kindness.
In our passage today Paul was telling the people of Thessalonica how they should be living ready for the Second Advent. He knew it wasn’t something which would come easily for them and it won’t come easy for us either. Gracefully accepting correction means we have a deep-seated desire to live as Christ would have us live. If we don’t accept correction we are revealing a heart which loves self more than it does the Lord.
The things Paul listed as being important for living as followers of the Lord were not just things he had pulled out of the air as suggestions. Paul had been teaching these things and had seen the fruit of lives lived that way. In fact, he had grown up knowing how to live all the details of the law as a Pharisee but had been shone by the Lord how futile those efforts were. Once he surrendered to Jesus, Paul learned what it meant to live in a way which glorified the Lord and he knew the joy his obedience brought him.
Paul also showed he understood it wasn’t able to be done with human strength. It was his prayer that God would give them the strength of heart to live blamelessly. A holy life wouldn’t require constant correction and the relationship between the blameless person and the Lord would not be strained, allowing for clear communication lines. When we are not limited in our prayers, we will find God can more clearly direct us and convict us. And if we are listening to His conviction there should be less need for others to correct our behavior.
Paul finished his thought with the real truth we need to hang onto, no matter how hard we try we won’t be found blameless in this life. But by His call on our lives and our repentance, we will be found living a life aligned with Christ, and His holiness will be ours when He comes to take us to our eternal home.
Making It Personal
How important is holy living in your life? Are there places in your heart where you know you struggle with living holy? What do find so attractive about that part of your life?
Making It Personal Kids
What do you think holy means? Why do you think Jesus wants you to live a holy life? Do you want to live in a way which makes Jesus look good to others?
Father, You are holy and we should desire that in our lives too. Give us the strength and wisdom to live as You would have us live. In Jesus’ name, amen.