18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.
20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,
23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.
King James Version (KJV)
19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,
20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,
21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
26 Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.
King James Version (KJV)
23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;
24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.
26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:
27 Neither give place to the devil.
28 Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.
29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.
30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:
32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.
5 Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children;
2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.
3 But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints;
4 Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.
5 For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.
6 Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.
7 Be not ye therefore partakers with them.
8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)
10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.
11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.
12 For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.
11 And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.
12 The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.
13 Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying.
14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.
Authorized (King James) Version (AKJV)
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: 4 according as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: 5 having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, 6 to the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.
2 Thessalonians 2
New International Version (NIV)
The Man of Lawlessness
2 Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christand our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers and sisters, 2 not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by the teaching allegedly from us—whether by a prophecy or by word of mouth or by letter—asserting that the day of the Lord has already come. 3 Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness[a]is revealed, the man doomed to destruction. 4 He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.
5 Don’t you remember that when I was with you I used to tell you these things? 6 And now you know what is holding him back, so that he may be revealed at the proper time. 7 For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way. 8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming. 9 The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10 and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.
13 But we ought always to thank God for you,brothers and sisters loved by the Lord, because God chose you as firstfruits[b] to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth. 14 He called you to this through our gospel, that you might share in the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
15 So then, brothers and sisters, stand firm and hold fast to the teachings[c] we passed on to you,whether by word of mouth or by letter.
16 May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope,17 encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.
Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Savior. Titus 1:4
Peace with God
through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.
Joy in Tribulation
And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, know that tribulation produces perseverance;
and perseverance, character; and character, hope.
Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die.
But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Salvation from God’s Wrath
Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be save from wrath through Him.
For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.
And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.
Contrast of Righteousness and Condemnation
Therefore, just as through on man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned—-
(For until the law sin was in the world, but sin is not imputed when there is no law.
But the free gift is not like the offense. For if by the one man’s offense many died, much more the grace of God and the gift by the grace of one Man, Jesus Christ, abounded to many.
And the gift is not like that which come through the one who sinned. For the judgement which came from one offense resulted in condemnation, but the free gift which came from many offenses rusulted in justification.
For if by the one man’s offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.)
Therefore, as through one man’s offence judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through on Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life.
For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous.
Moreover the law entered that the offense might abound. But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more,
so that as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life thorough Jesus Christ our Lord.
How amazing it is to know that no matter how great our sins, if we accept Jesus into our lives and proclaim him our Savior, that our sins will be washed away and we will appear before God washed clean. By His giving of His blood we have a future, where otherwise we would have been condemned. Not by anything we do other than having faith and be willing to ask for forgiveness and accept God’s grace.
And yet how sad that there are so many who still refuse to see, and are not willing to give up that control. And how sad it is that there are so many that, like Satan himself, wish to control those around them. Whether they do so in ignorance or willful disobedience, it does not matter. The end results are the same, and the loss in forever.
I pray for those that are in leadership positions, whether from the very top to the parent of a child. Please understand that one day you will stand in judgement before God. What you do will be judged by Him, but if you do not accept Him into your life and ask Him for forgiveness, He will not see you. No matter how good you think that you are, no matter how worthy your goals, if they do not include Him, they will be forever forgotten and you will face eternity damned for your lack of action.
When Nebuchadnezzar was restored he said
“And at the end of the time I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my understanding returned to me; and I blessed the Most High and praised and honored Him who lives forever:
For His dominion is an everlasting dominion,
And His kingdom is from generation to generation.
All the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing;
He does according to His will in the army of heaven
And among the inhabitants of the earth.
No one can restrain His hand or say to Him “What have You done?”
Avoid Divisive Persons
17 Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them.18 For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus[a] Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple. 19 For your obedience has become known to all. Therefore I am glad on your behalf; but I want you to be wise in what is good, and simple concerning evil. 20 And the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly.
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.
2 Thessalonians 3:6-16
Good News Translation (GNT)
The Obligation to Work
6 Our friends, we command you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to keep away from all believers who are living a lazy life and who do not follow the instructions that we gave them.7You yourselves know very well that you should do just what we did. We were not lazy when we were with you.8 We did not accept anyone’s support without paying for it. Instead, we worked and toiled; we kept working day and night so as not to be an expense to any of you.9 We did this, not because we do not have the right to demand our support; we did it to be an example for you to follow.10 While we were with you, we used to tell you,
Whoever refuses to work is not allowed to eat.
11 We say this because we hear that there are some people among you who live lazy lives and who do nothing except meddle in other people’s business.12 In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ we command these people and warn them to lead orderly lives and work to earn their own living.
13 But you, friends, must not become tired of doing good.14 It may be that some there will not obey the message we send you in this letter. If so, take note of them and have nothing to do with them, so that they will be ashamed.15 But do not treat them as enemies; instead, warn them as believers.
16 May the Lord himself, who is our source of peace, give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with you all.
Good News Translation (GNT)
When Someone Sins
15 If your brother sins against you,[a] go to him and show him his fault. But do it privately, just between yourselves. If he listens to you, you have won your brother back.16 But if he will not listen to you, take one or two other persons with you, so that
every accusation may be upheld by the testimony of two or more witnesses, as the scripture says.17 And if he will not listen to them, then tell the whole thing to the church. Finally, if he will not listen to the church, treat him as though he were a pagan or a tax collector.
2 Thessalonians 1:3-12
so that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure,
which is manifest evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer;
since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you,
and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels,
in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power,
when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed.
Therefore we also pray always for you that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfill all the good pleasure of His goodness and the work of faith with power,
that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and you in Him according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,
that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man,
that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height–
to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us,
to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.
Charge to Preach the Word
2 Timothy 4:1-5
Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers;
and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.
But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.
Justifying Our Way to Hell
Everyday we make choices, some small, some large, that we know before we choose them that they are wrong. And yet, we choose to do them anyway. We justify them by saying “Oh, this is just a little sin, God won’t condemn me on just a little sin.”
What fools we are! There is no difference between a little sin and a big sin. We cannot justify it away! Jesus died for all our sins, but when we continue to choose sin, deliberately, we make a mockery of Him.
Do we truly believe that when we stand before God on judgment day that He will simply overlook our transgressions? We are justified by grace, forgiven by the blood that Jesus shed, but if we ourselves have turned our back on that, do we honestly believe that we are still under that grace?
2 Thessalonians 1:8 tells us that when Jesus returns from heaven “in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ,” that 1:9 “These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power,” 1:10 “when He comes, in that Day, to be glorifed in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed.”
So, how much do you believe if you choose to disobey? And if we choose to disobey a Word given by our Lord and Savior, are we still under His grace? If we choose to turn our backs on Christ‘s example and live according to Him, are we deliberately saying that the Holy Spirit did not enter us? How far will we go in denying Christ? And how far can we go and still recieve His mercy
2Thessalonians 2:8-12 “And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
Do we have the “love of the truth,” that we might be saved? Or are we wilfully and blindly choosing deception in order that we may take “pleasure in unrighteousness”?
2 Thessalonians 2:13-17 “But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth, to which He called you by our gospel, for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, whether by word or our epistle. Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work.”
If we know the Word is the truth, we have an obligation to follow the Word, to “stand fast and hold the traditions” that we are taught. We always retain that choice, in following God, if we have been saved by the Grace which came down through the Holy Spirit, we are changed and we become new. We know because we are told that we will be tempted, Jesus Himself faced that temptation. Sometimes we falter, we are only human, but we are also told that we have a way out, if we let Him, God will help and He will not allow us to be tempted more that we can bear.
So, when we deliberately choose to give in to temptation and justify it by saying that it is “no big deal,” who are we fooling? Not, God! “But the Lord is faithful, who will establish you and guard you from the evil one.” 2 Thessalonians 3:3
Consider your actions, my friends! Consider your future! Consider those who watch you and make their own decisions on whether to follow Christ based on what they see in you. If you are willingly choosing sin, what are you telling the world? Above all, what are you telling God and His Son?
This is not a condemnation of any who follow Christ, this is an exhortation to you and to me, to remember. 2 Thessalonians 3:13 “But as for you brethren, do not grow weary of doing good.”
Blessed be the God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He has made us accepted in the beloved. Ephesisans 1:3-6
Faith Removes Discrimination
My brethren, do not hold the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with partiality.
For if there should come into your assembly a man with gold rings, in fine apparel, and there should also come in a poor man in filthy clothes,
and you pay attention to the one wearing the fine clothes and say to him, “You sit here in a good place,” and say to the poor man, “You stand there,” or, “Sit here at my footstool,”
have you not shown partiality among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts?
Listen, my beloved brethren: Has God not chose the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heir of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him?
But you have dishonored the poor man. Do not the rich oppress you and drag you into the courts?
Do they not blaspheme that noble name by which you are called?
If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scritpture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you do well;
but if you show partiality, you commit sin, and are convicted by the law as transgressors.
For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.
For He who said, “Do not comit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.” Now if you do not commit adultery, but you do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law.
So speak and so do as those who will be judged by the law of liberty.
For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.
The Purpose of Tests
My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials,
knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.
But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.
But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind.
For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;
he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.
Let the lowly brother glory in his exaltation,
but the rich in his humiliation, because as a flower of the field he will pass away.
For no sooner has the sun risen with a burning heat than it withers the grass; its flower falls, and its beautiful appearance perishes. So the rich man also will fade away in his pursuits.
Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been proved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.