Date: October 17, 1999

Series: The 2nd Coming of Jesus Christ

Speaker: Ron R. Ritchie

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Suffering ... in light of Christ's Second Coming
2 Thessalonians 1:5-12

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1. God will judge the afflictors - 2 Thess. 1:5-9

"All this (suffering v.1:4) is evidence that God's judgment is right, (in that their faith in the midst of their suffering is "proof positive" that they have a relationship with Jesus and that God will reward their faith and endurance now and into eternity.) and as a result you will be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are suffering."

"God is just: He will pay back trouble to those who trouble you and give relief to you who are troubled and to us as well. (Trouble for those who trouble you and relief for the believers). This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with His powerful angels. He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the majesty of His power..."

Questions to Consider

1. Do you believe you have been called of God to share the Good News of Jesus Christ whenever He gives you an open door to do so?

2. Do you understand that if you develop a godly lifestyle of telling others about the Good News of Jesus Christ some may come to know Him as their Lord and Savior? Has that happened in your experience?

3. Do you understand that at times when you are willing to share the Good News of Jesus Christ (John 3:16, Romans 10:9-10) with someone you run the risk of being rejected as well as suffering some form of harm? Has that ever happened to you?

4. Do you realize when you suffer for the sake of Christ and His Gospel you are "being counted worthy of the kingdom of God"?

5. Do you believe "God is just"? Do you delight that God will punish all that reject Him and His Son with eternal destruction? Explain

6. Do you really believe that Jesus Christ is coming again? How has that truth affected your lifestyle on a daily basis?

2. God will bless the afflicted - 2 Thess. 1:10-12

"...on the day He comes to be glorified in His holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed. (Finally all that Jesus said about our relationship with Him will be seen as true.) This includes you, because you believed our testimony to you."

"With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of His calling, and that by His power (the indwelling Holy Spirit) He may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith. We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, (Jesus may be seen in you) and you in Him, (and you may be seen in Him) according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ."

Questions to Consider

1. How is Christ Jesusí character (glory) seen in you today?

2. How will Jesusí character (glory) be seen in His people when He comes again?

3. Do you think God sees you as one who is living a life "worthy of His calling"?

4. Are you depending on the indwelling Holy Spirit to provide the power necessary for every good purpose you hope to accomplish for the Lord?

5. Who are you currently praying for so "that our God may count them worthy of His calling, and that by His power He may fulfill every good purpose of theirs and every act prompted by their faith"?

6. Define in your own words "the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ" and how this "grace" is affecting your daily life.

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