Background: 2 Thessalonians was written to the Church in Thessalonica. In 1 Thessalonians we discover that this a church made up of faithful strong Christians whom the Apostle Paul praises dearly. What was so praise worthy was the fact that they stayed so faithful even in the midst of an apparently very difficult time. Paul encouraged them to put their hope in tomorrow while at the same time, working hard for the Lord today.
Sometime between his first letter and this second on a “minister” had come into the city and mislead everyone to believe that Christ had already come back. This misleading has caused many to become idle in their faith and in their daily walk. Therefore, Paul wrote 2 Thessalonians to correct some miss conceptions on God’s final judgment on man, the second coming of Christ, to encourage them to stand firmly in their faith, and finally to warn them against idleness.
Theme: Final Judgment
Read: 2 Thessalonians 1 by October 26th
Most people today believe in a heaven, but may not believe in hell. The Bible is very clear that Christ is coming back. When Christ returns, He will judge the world and release His punishment on unrepentant people in the world. For the Christians, they will be taken with Christ to be with Him forever. For the unbeliever, they will be punished in Hell for eternity.
This is the part that many people have a hard time understanding. They can’t understand how a loving God could send someone to Hell for eternity. The reason why they believe this is because they have a skewed vision of who God is. We must realize that while He is loving, He is also just. We read in Romans that the cost of sin is death, an eternal death. Because He is just sinners must be punished for their sins. However, because of His love he sent Christ to die do for OUR sins so that those who repent and trust in His righteousness will have the promised eternal life.
This truth makes our time on this earth very significant. There are millions of people today who are still lost in their sins and facing eternal destruction. The future judgment should motivate us to share the good news that for those that repent of their sins and place their faith in Christ, there is no reason to fear this judgment.
How do we know that Christ is coming back? What will He do when He returns?
What is the destiny of unbelievers at the final judgment?
What should this motivate us to do?
Why do Christians have no reason to fear the final judgment?