THE POWER OF GOD'S WORD
Tuesday, 1 October 2019
1 Thessalonians 2 : 1-20
“For this reason we also constantly thank God that when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men, but for what it really is, the word of God , which also performs its work in you when you believe.” -1Thes. 2: 13
The Epistle of 1 Thessalonians was written to the young and energetic church at Thessalonica planted by Paul. In it Paul covers a wide range of Christian doctrines in an effort to give sound teaching to the young converts. In general, they are encouraged to remain in the faith, grow in mutual love, rejoice and pray and to give thanks for everything.
1Thes.2:13 of today’s reading gives us an insight into the nature of the Word of God. The faith of the Thessalonians has become known to the other Churches in and around and they have become an example to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia. We can see a dynamic church growing towards maturity and producing remarkable results in witnessing to the world.
How was this possible for a young Church? What was the secret of the vitality and vibrancy of the faith in those young believers? Today’s key verse gives us the answer – the manner in which they received the Word!! In 1Thes 1:5 it says: “For our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Spirit and in much assurance, as you know what kind of men we were among you for your sake.” The Word was preached to them in power and in the Holy Spirit. However, it also depends on how they received it. The Word of God has power! In Romans 1:16 it states that the gospel is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes. The Greek word for power is “dunamis” - which denotes inherent power. This is the same word used in Mark 5:30, to explain the power that proceeded from Jesus to heal the woman with the issue of blood!
In the Parable of the Sower (Luke 8:4-15) Jesus explains four different grounds that received the seed. The seed is the Word and the soil is the heart (or mind) of man.
The first ground: the Way side- was hard soil. This refers to a “Closed Mind” – nothing will be produced!
The second ground: - Rocky soil (shallow soil) – represents “superficial mind.”
The third ground: the soil with thorns represents a “distracted mind”
The fourth ground: the good soil which symbolizes a “good heart” that retains the Word
While the seed remains the same, its inherent power to produce the fruit will be the same. However, the condition of the soil that received the seed was the decisive factor in producing the results.
Paul testifies that the Thessalonians received the word preached by Paul as the Word from God. They accepted it and believed it as the Word of God and it performed its work!! In as much as we are able to receive the Word of God on the good ground of our heart/mind, the inherent power in God’s Word will work to produce good fruit in our lives. Ultimately as Paul exhorts them, the goal should be “…that you would walk worthy of God who calls you into His own kingdom and glory.” (1 Thess. 2:12)
“For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”
Hebrews 4:12 NASB
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