Christianity 201

November 18, 2020

Christians Should Make a Lot of Noise, Right?

Filed under: Christianity - Devotions — paulthinkingoutloud @ 5:35 pm
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The NIV provides a header for the first part of I Thess. 4, and that is “Living to Please God.” Here’s the portion of that we’re focusing in on today:

Now about your love for one another we do not need to write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love each other. 10 And in fact, you do love all of God’s family throughout Macedonia. Yet we urge you, brothers and sisters, to do so more and more, 11 and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you, 12 so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.

We’re back again with Josh Ketchum, a Church of Christ pastor in Mayfield, Kentucky, who writes at Life in the Kingdom. Click the link below to read.

A Quiet Life

Noise! We are used to it every day; our world is chaotic and busy. In the midst of this chaos, Paul gives us an unusual command, “aspire to live quietly” (1 Thes. 4:11). Does Paul want us to quit talking so much? While that is a part of the idea, it seems the concept is more of serenity, rest, peace, and contentment.

Isn’t that the life you want to live? Paul will tell the church at Thessalonica that the quiet life involves three aspects. I would call these tried and true principles your grandparents taught you.

First, a quiet life means loving one another (1 Thess. 4:9-10). Christians have been taught by God how to love. We emulate his love. People of the world don’t truly understand about love, making it all about romance or emotional feelings, but God through his actions teaches us true love. A quiet life is focused on loving others like God has loved us (1 John 4:11).

Second, a quiet life means minding our own affairs (1 Thess. 4:11). The church there had become idle waiting on the return of Christ. This idleness led to the sin of gossip. They were likely meddling in the affairs of their church leaders, rather than submitting to them (1 Thes. 5:12-13). Living the quiet life means you focus on keeping your own house in order, rather than trying to discover the dirt in other people’s homes.

Third, a quiet life means working with our own hands (1 Thess. 4:11-12). Paul was esteeming manual labor and hard work. He is elevating the need to be independent and self-sustaining when you are capable of such. Once again their idleness was getting them into trouble and they needed to be encouraged to find productive tasks to put their minds and hands to work.

We have to aspire to live this quiet life, because it takes focus to keep out all the noise and worldly pursuits. These are things that if we did them our peace and happiness would be greater. Our world would look so different if all of us lived this quiet life. These are not radical principles, these are the traits our country was built upon and we need them now. Will you live the quiet life?

 


From the same writer:

What Type of Tents Did Paul Make?

The Danger of an Idle Mind (timely for 2020)

 

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