Ad Alta Simul

1 Thessalonians 5: 14-23

14 And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone. 15 Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.

16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

19 Do not quench the Spirit. 20 Do not treat prophecies with contempt 21 but test them all; hold on to what is good, 22 reject every kind of evil.

23 May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

To give a bit of background, the church in Thessaloniki was one of the early churches. At this time, they were no doubt being physically, socially, and economically persecuted for being Christian. So Paul writes this letter to encourage them to be unified and look to Jesus for hope in these difficult times. We can see a bit of that core message in our passage today which comes right at the end of the book. In this section, Paul is giving his final instructions to them, teaching them things like helping the weak, continue to work hard, and to “16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”