Dear 5x5x5 Bible Readers,
The last few chapters of the Gospel of John told the story of Jesus’ appearances to the disciples after His resurrection. It’s interesting that our reading plan then moves to the letters to the Thessalonians, a church that was afraid perhaps they had missed the second coming of Jesus.
When Paul visited Thessalonica (in modern Greece) in about 49AD many came to faith in Jesus, but there was also a riot and he had to escape in the night. (Read about it in Acts 17.) Paul’s first letter to Thessalonians is one of the earliest letters he wrote, just a year or two after his visit that launched the church. In the letters we see Paul’s warm pastoral heart for this young church. He is excited for their genuine faith, and he longs to see them again. Paul writes less about doctrine in these letters, and much more about what faith looks like, how to live, enduring persecution, and having hope. These themes continue into 2 Thessalonians, though Paul is not quite as warm in tone.
“Never tire of doing what is right.” 2 Thess. 3:13
The end of the year is quickly approaching, and we have only 2 Peter and Revelation left to read! Congratulations, and hang in there!