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1Thessalonians, Chapter Two, Lesson Three

BURDENED IN CHRIST            Page 2

Burdened in Christ


V. 9 ** Once again, who does Paul call upon to verify his ministry among the Thessalonians?

"For you recall, brethren..."

The Thessalonians themselves were fully aware of Paul's life and ministry in their midst. This is one of five times he would ask them to be a witness to the validity of his ministry.

1Thessalonians 1:5 - "just as you know"
2Thessalonians 2:1 - "For you yourselves know"
2Thessalonians 2:2 - "as you know"
2Thessalonians 2:5 - "as you know"
But it was a two way street, Paul knew of their faithfulness too!
cf. 1Thessalonians 1:3

** Here in verse nine, what is it specifically that they "knew" about Paul's life and ministry?

They knew about Paul's "labor and hardship" on their behalf.

** To what is that referring?

Paul paid his own way! cf. 2Thessalonians 3:7-9

** Why did he do that?

"...in order to offer ourselves as a model for you, that you might follow our example".
cf. 2Thessalonians 3:9

** Do you suppose Paul had some part-time job to help float the cost of the ministry?

No - He labored, "working night and day"! Paul was a cutter of skins, or tent maker.
cf. Acts 18:1-3 and 2Corinthians 11:27

** This amazing work ethic introduces us to Paul's first burden which he had for the Thessalonians. Why would he be so committed to hard work? It doesn't seem very spiritual, why not just go about praying for people and then let those same people feed him in return?

His burden was - he did not want to be a burden to them! "...so as not to be a burden to any of you". Remember, he wanted to be an example that they would be able to follow.

** What drove Paul to this burden? What was at stake, if he were to develop a poor reputation?

"...we proclaimed to you the gospel of God". Paul knew that if his life was not exemplary, the message of the gospel could be damaged.

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