2 Thessalonians 1:4 (ESV): 4 Therefore we ourselves boast about you in the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith in all your persecutions and in the afflictions that you are enduring.
Paul was extremely complimentary of the church of Thessalonica, in both of his letters to them. In previous verse Paul gave thanks to God for their abundantly growing faith and increasing love. Paul reiterates their great faith in this verse.
In his previous letter, 1 Thessalonians, Paul commended them for the triad of faith, hope, and love. While he directly speaks of faith and love in verses 3-4 of 2 Thessalonians, the following verses speak of the believer’s hope in contrast to the coming judgment of God upon the world.
What is the boast of our churches? Some boast great edifices. Some boast of financial security. Some may boast of their influence in the community. Some may boast of dynamic worship teams, great preaching, powerful community. These boasts are wonderful, but are they what God would boast about of us?
Paul, through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, wrote in this part of God’s revealed Word a boast of a church that was faithful in the midst of persecution, trouble, suffering, and heartache.
May God help us, both as individual followers of Jesus and as the community of God, to be known for faithful love and service to our King of kings!
Heavenly Father, help me to live and serve you faithfully, through easy times and difficult, giving you honor and glory in how I speak, think, feel, and act. In Jesus’ name, Amen.