Paul continues on the explanation of why he hasn’t been back to Thessalonica (it appears this was a point of contention with them.) After Paul and the bros left Thess. they went to Berea, where the Jews from Thessalonica followed them and caused trouble for them there. The bros (Timmy and Silas) stayed behind while Paul was taken to Athens by himself. Despite being alone, Paul of course engages the Jews in the synagogues and then further goes to the Areopagus to have it out with them fellas. In the meantime, Timothy went back to Thess. to check on them and to bring word to Paul who was worried about them.
Timmy brings back good news that the Thess. church is doing well and that they think kindly of Paul and the bros. Paul is encouraged that, despite the reaction to the Good News he keeps running into, there are still people meeting Jesus, persisting in the face of temptation and persecution, and doing the work that Paul left behind for them to do (follow Jesus and take people with them.) Again, where we are not doing this kind of work we are missing out on being part of God’s fulfilling rescue mission and the joy and peace that comes along with it, which helps as a healing salve when we find our message brings trouble. If our message brings neither trouble nor peace, we are doing it wrong.
Paul ends this with a request from God that Paul and the bros may yet return to Thessalonica and continue to bless the work that church is doing, focusing on love for one another and staying righteous and holy as they await the return of Jesus.
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