Through-the-Bible Thursday: 1 & 2 THESSALONIANS (5 mins) — It was a horrible plot of the enemy: To hinder Paul from going back to Thessalonica (1 Thes 2:18). Not only were those new believers being persecuted, they were also confused about matters regarding Christ’s return. If only Paul could have made that trip, he’d have been able to address those issues and bring much needed clarity and comfort. So what was Paul to do, unable to get through the devil’s roadblock? The apostle would write these lessons down in what we know today as First and Second Thessalonians! What Satan meant for evil, God meant for good! What a help these letters have been to Christians all throughout the centuries. Not only do we have helpful insights into the two phases of the Lord’s return (in the air; to the earth) but Paul then applies these future certainties by addressing present realities. He warns against idleness, the assumption that, if the Lord is coming, we’ll just idly wait for that (2 Thess 3:6-12). And he warns against weariness, and the danger of giving up because the Lord hasn’t come (v 13-14). So here is the double admonition we need: watch for His coming, but as you watch, work!