LIVING WORD DEVOTIONAL
By Pastor Mensa Otabil
Saturday 15th August, 2020
Scripture Reading: 1 Thessalonians 4:1-12
That you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you, that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing. (1 Thessalonians 4:11-12)
The early Christians were just like us. They were not perfect people. They were human beings saved by grace trying to live the Christian life. They had the same kinds of human attitudes and limitations we have today. When you read the letters of Paul to the early church, you notice that he addresses situations very similar to the situations we have in the church today.
In this part of his letter to the Thessalonians, he addresses the lifestyle of some people in the church. Some believed Jesus was going to return so soon so they didn’t work. Their whole focus in life was on waiting for the appearing of Christ; what we call the rapture. Others spent their time visiting other believers from house to house, eating and asking for money. As they did so, they also spread gossip from one member’s home to the other.
Unfortunately, they took this bad habit outside the church to unbelievers, misconducted themselves and became bad examples in the community.
So the Apostle Paul cautioned them to walk properly; or act with decency. The same admonition applies today. Living without a clear purpose and just looking out for a miracle or spiritual experience without working is improper living. Paul first encouraged them to lead quiet lives – not as busy bodies, interfering in everybody else’s issues.
He also urged them to work with their hands and mind their own businesses. Working is seen as a means of walking properly. The early church did not see work as an act of unbelief but an act of faith. Working was meant to help the believer not to lack anything; in other words for the believers to prosper and live gainfully. God expects us to commit ourselves to living a decent life and to invest in our work.
Today, that counsel is still valuable. We must not let our expectation of heaven stop us from living a gainful earthly life. The same God who gives us Eternal Life and also gives us abundant life here on earth. Both are the blessings of the believer. Christ recommends that we occupy till He comes. We must not be so spiritually minded that we would be on no earthly use. That means find something profitable to do with your life.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank for the wisdom and opportunity you have given me to create wealth; bless the work of my hands and prosper me so that I lack nothing. In Jesus name, Amen!
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