Responsibilities as Believers

Waiting to board a plane, on which he had a reservation, Brigadier General Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., overheard the plea of a private at the ticket window: “I’m going overseas in three days. I want to see my Ma before I go. I can go home and back only if I travel by plane! It … More

Respect

It seems that there was a problem in the Thessalonian church that was caused by those who had stopped working, because of their belief in the nearness of the second coming. With this in mind Paul urges the Christians to listen to those who had positions of spiritual leadership in the church and were hard workers. While it is true that in the church all have equal spiritual privileges and blessings, it is not true that all have equal office.

Paul then gives three duties of church leaders (vv. 12-13):

  1. They are to preside over the affairs of the church.
  2. They are to admonish the people.
  3. Their reputation should come from the quality of their work.

Paul explains how all church members, as well as church leaders, are responsible to minister to each other (vv. 14-15). All Christians have four ongoing continuous responsibilities which are as follows:

  1. Warn the unruly - This has reference to those who are idle and neglect their duties.
  2. Encourage the feeble minded - These are the ones who become discouraged and despondent more easily than most.
  3. Support the weak - This has reference to those who are weak spiritually.
  4. Be patient with everyone - This requires nothing short of God’s love through the Holy Spirit.

Application

Paul makes it plain that without the power of the Holy Spirit it is impossible to live the Christian life? Of these commands listed above which one do I need to work on the most?

I Thessalonians 5:12-15 (English Standard Version)

We ask you, brothers, to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them very highly in love because of their work. Be at peace among yourselves. And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all. See that no one repays anyone evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to everyone.

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