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S.O.A.P April 15, 2018

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April 15, 2018 

Read 2 Thessalonians 1:1-12

To read this text click HERE.

Scripture- 2 Thessalonians 1:11- So we keep on praying for you, asking our God to enable you to live a life worthy of his call. May he give you the power to accomplish all the good things your faith prompts you to do.

Observations- This congregation was under fire and facing intense persecution and Paul was grateful for the faithfulness. He encouraged them and reminded them that God would settle all of the accounts- favorably or unfavorably- in His own time. In letting them know he constantly brings them to the throne of grace for the help they need to persevere, Paul hopes they will be aware of God's power at work in and through them. 

Application- We may not face the same kind of persecution that the first century Christ followers faced and we can give thanks mightily for that fact, but our brothers and sisters around the world need our prayers and encouragement. Of course, we need prayers to live a life worthy of our calling to do battle with complacency and follow through with the promptings from the Holy Spirit that we receive. Will you pray for the persecuted church and for God to nudge to action today?

Prayer- Lord, thank You for Christ followers all around the globe. Many more than we will ever get to know suffer for their faith in Christ and so we lift them to Your throne of grace and ask You to strengthen and encourage them. Prompt us to take action that honors You and points people You love so much to new life in Jesus Christ. Amen.

Pastor Jamie

P. S. - For more information about people persecuted for their faith in Christ around the world go to: https://www.persecution.com/

To contact me:  

To connect with the New Hope website: www.findnewhope.com 

Posted by Jamie Westlake with
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S.O.A.P April 14, 2018

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April 14, 2018 

Read 1 Thessalonians 4:1-18

To read this text click HERE.

Scripture- 1 Thessalonians 4:13- And now, dear brothers and sisters, we want you to know what will happen to the believers who have died so you will not grieve like people who have no hope.

Observations- The first generation of Christ followers had begun to die and there was some confusion about what this meant. Paul wanted to make sure that believers grieved as those who had the ultimate hope of new life in Christ here and now and forever. One day Jesus will return and the first fruits of the resurrection will become a living reality for believers on a new earth, but in every generation since Jesus His followers have been going to be with Him the old fashioned way through death. Will we be with Jesus when we die? Yes. Will there be something remarkable in the resurrection of the dead at the end of time? Yes, indeed! 

Application- Our tears and grief over the loss of someone we love who had faith in Christ is not a denial of the resurrection. So what does it mean to grieve as those filled with hope in Christ in this life and the next? It means we lean fully into our sadness and pain without giving into a sense of ultimate despair. When we say "good-bye," we remember we are really saying "See you later," which doesn't minimizes our pain, but it does put our grief in the beautiful light of eternity. 

Prayer- Dear Lord, thank You for the incredible reminders in Your Word that we are never alone, for You are with us in our suffering, pain, and grief. In this life we will experience many losses and we need Your help putting them in the proper perspective. Help us to grieve well the people we love, but help us never grieve as those with no hope. Keep pointing us to Jesus for the help we need today. Amen.

"Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end." (Ecclesiastes 3:11),

Pastor Jamie

To contact me:  

To connect with the New Hope website: www.findnewhope.com

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