Temple Baptist Church - 5-24-2015
1 Thessalonians 1:6-10
A. We have spent a lot of time over the past few weeks looking at the beginnings of a great church.
1. The church at Thessalonica started in the fires of persecution but these new believers were willing to pay the price of existence. Satan, under the power of Rome, did his best to stamp the life out of the church but failed!
2. This a tribute to the caliber of believers found in the church. In our day, you find few older believers willing to stand for right and the things of the Lord. These in Thessalonica were babes in Christ! Though they were young in the Lord, they had a heart for God and a desire to follow the truth of God’s word.
3. They also had a passion for souls because they knew where they came from, what God had done for the and in them, and what they had been saved from (hell) and what they had been saved to (heaven).
B. Ensample is a pattern to be exemplified or followed. As a norm, the elder sets the example for the younger to follow but here the role is reversed which paints a picture of this great church.
1. They were an ensample in faith. Vs 3 Their eyes were neither upon their affliction nor their poverty. Their eyes were on the Lord. This may seem simplistic but they just believed God! Great churches follow God’s Word and God’s will.
2. They were an ensample in love. Vs 3. Their labor was not out of necessity alone. They labored (which means worked hard) because they loved the Lord, loved each other, loved God’s Word, and loved the souls of men.
3. They were an ensample in endurance. Vs 3. “Patience of hope” shows their durability in the face of adversity. They faced troubles, they fought troubles, and they existed in spite of troubles.
4. They were an ensample in unity and fellowship. Vs 4. They were beloved brethren. Churches should be family! We are more than just believer, we are a family along with believers everywhere. The greatest enemy of the local church is division.
5. They were an ensample in doctrinal purity. Vs 5. They received the Word of God as it was; they stood with the Word of God; they stood for the Word of God. They heard, they believed, they heeded, and they shared it.
6. They were an ensample in obedience to leadership. Vs 6. They followed God’s men and God’s men followed Christ. God gave them under shepherds or pastors to lead, guide, feed, comfort, and love the flock of God. They loved each other and they loved the men of God given to them.
7. They were an ensample in missions. Vs 8. God’s Word not only sounded out from their pulpits, it also sounded out and was heard around the world. To whom much is give, much is required. They were glad for their salvation and tried to win others to Christ.
8. They were an ensample in changed lives. Vs 9. They turned from idols to God. Turned shows the repentance in their hearts as they gave up the world for their Lord. A salvation that does not work is one that will not save!
9. They were an ensample in priority. Vs 10. They traded the temporal (the things that they could not keep) for the eternal (the things that they could not lose).