This content is part of a series.
L.I.P. = Live in Peace (8 of 9)
Series: No Rest for the Righteous
1 Thessalonians 5:12-22
"Practice makes perfect!" How many times have you heard this expression? No doubt, countless times. Yet, we all know too well that "practice doesn't make perfect!" I wish it did, but it doesn't. The hope is that practice makes permanent. Nowhere is this more critical than in the Christian faith. Christianity is nothing if it is not practical. Or, perhaps I should say, "The Christian faith is no faith at all if it is not practiced." In 1 Thess 5:12-22, we come to one of the most practical passages on how to do church in the entire New Testament. Perhaps you have wondered, "What are the essentials for a happy, thriving church family? How can I make my local church a more spiritual place?" These eleven verses flesh out what it means to live soberly (5:6, 8). Paul provides four "sobriety checkpoints" that will enable us to function wisely in the body of Christ.
1. Honor church leaders (5:12-13). In this first section, Paul gives three specific exhortations on how to honor those in spiritual leadership.
• Respect your leaders (5:12). Paul writes, "But we request of you, brethren, that you appreciate those who diligently labor among you, and have charge over you in the Lord and give you instruction." The word translated "appreciate" (oida) ordinarily means "know." However, in this context it means "recognize, respect, or honor." The notion of appreciation is found in the second request in 5:13, so it seems best to understand this word to refer to respect. There is the need in every congregation to recognize and respect those God has raised up to lead, particularly those pastors and elders who "diligently labor" and provide "instruction."
Someone has suggested five ways to get rid of your pastor: (1) Sit up front, smile, and say "amen" every time he says something good. He will preach himself to death. (2) Pat him on the back and tell him what g ...
There are 21425 characters in the full content. This excerpt only shows a 2000 character sample of the full content.