by Chris Walls

Successful Christian Living
Chris Walls
1 Thessalonians 5.16-22


Success as defined by Webster's dictionary means: a favorable result; the gaining of wealth, fame, etc.; a successful person or thing. We can think of other words that go along with it, such as accomplishment, achievement, prosperity, or fruition.

Success is a word that is part of our lives and our culture. There are many things that determine success, in our world today. I can remember think of movies that deal with success. There are movies like:
The Secret of my Success
Wall Street

There are many differing views on success in our culture. Success is in many ways like beauty; it is in the eye of the beholder. It depends on the person you are talking to as to the definition of success.

What is success in the life of a Christian?

I think is put very basically in 1 Thessalonians 2:16-22.

I. Responsibilities to oneself (v.16-18)

A. Rejoice Always

This is the idea that no matter the situation that joy should come through, which is a paradox to many people. How can someone have joy in the middle of a sorrow?

This idea goes back to the Sermon on the Mount in Matt. 5:10-12. When Jesus said, "Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you."

Christian joy lies in its emergence under the most adverse circumstances. Paul states this paradox succinctly in 2 Corinthians 6:10: "sorrowful, yet always rejoicing."

The challenge in the Christian life is for the joy to become a constant outlook on life, hence the word "always."

The thing we must understand is that always rejoicing does not come from external circumstances, but it comes from a consist ...

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