~ Steadiness in the Christian Life ~
Many today are searching for stability in their chaotic lives. In seven short verses of 1 Thessalonians 5 we are provided a straightforward seven-part formula for consistency and stability in our lives on earth.
Consistent Prayer ~ “Pray continually” (5:17). Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ said, “Men always ought to pray and not lose heart” (Luke 18:1).
Consistent Thanksgiving ~ “Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus” (5:18). “Giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 5:20-21).
Consistent Response ~ “Do not put out the Spirit's fire” (5:19). “Don't cause the Holy Spirit sorrow by the way you live. Remember, He is the one who marks you to be present on that day when salvation from sin will be complete” (Ephesians 4:30).
Consistent Learning ~ “Don't stifle those who have a word from the Master” (5:20, The Message). “Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15-16).
Consistent Evaluation ~ “Test everything. Hold on to the good”(5:21). This is the secret to spiritual maturity, “The mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil” (Hebrews 5:14b).
Consistent Purity ~ “Avoid every kind of evil” (5:22). Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God” (Matthew 5:8). “How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word” (Psalm 119:9).
Consistent Joy ~ “Be joyful always” (5:16). In the future this will be possible to the ultimate degree. “God will wipe every tear from our eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away” (Revelation 21:4).
Summary ~ “Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil. May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it” (5:16-24).
~ Robert Lloyd Russell, ABUNDANT LIFE NOW