How does Christ's return impact our relationships today?
I am a member at Sam's Club and every month I receive a flyer. Each month there is one item that sparks some curiosity in me. It's a collection of pails that are filled with food. Supposedly, these pails are enough for four people to last a whole year. So, for $2,800.99, you can have a food supply to last you a whole year. As I think about it, I would assume most of the people who buy them are looking to the future, unsure about what is going to happen. They want to ensure their survival. It is about them.
As we walk through 1 and 2 Thessalonians, our view should not just be about our own survival, our focus should be on others—loving and encouraging them. The future return of Christ should transform all our relationships today. We will discover today the different relationships that should be transformed, as we focus on his coming.
Transformed relationships with non-believers: evangelism
The first relationships, in 2 Thessalonians 3:1-5, that should be transformed are those with non-believers. We discover what our relationships should look like in verse 1. Paul's life was consumed by the mission of God—of seeing people come to faith in Christ. As he looked to the future of Christ's return, knowing that some would be with him and some would not, he realized that his life needed to be consumed by the ability to share the gospel. We see this in Matthew 28:18-20 in the Great Commission. This was Paul's mission. Jesus' command to us, his followers, is that our relationships be marked by evangelism—all the more as we look to Christ's return.
The imagery that Paul uses in vs.1 is that of the ...