3-Week Series: Double Blessing

Sermons

Summary: This is the 2nd sermon in the 1 Thessalonians series, "Encouragement". What does the Model Church look like?

Series: Encouragement [#2]

BEHAVIOR OF A MODEL CHURCH

1 Thessalonians 1:5-10

Introduction:

Last week, we began our series from 1 Thessalonians. We looked at the birthmarks of a model Church. This morning we are going to continue to look at a model Church. Churches, like individuals, are different in many ways. Each has its own strengths and weaknesses. It is important that we learn from this congregation on how to behave.

1 Thessalonians 1:5-7 (NIV)

5 because our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake. 6 You became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you welcomed the message in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit. 7 And so you became a model to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia.

A model Church is…

1. An example.

They were examples of belief. They received the Word of God and followed it. They became imitators of Paul and the Lord; and became a good example to all believers in Macedonia and Achaia. Others saw what a Church was supposed to be like through their example. The Christian’s behavior should stand out as an example that is completely different from the World. They gave this example while suffering for the Lord.

1 Thessalonians 1:8 (NIV)

8 The Lord’s message rang out from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia- your faith in God has become known everywhere. Therefore we do not need to say anything about it.

A model Church is…

2. Evangelistic.

The location of Thessalonica made it possible for the Church to become a base for missions in the whole area. The message of Jesus Christ rang out. The Church was evangelistic. They understood that the purpose of the Church was to lift up Christ to all around them so that people will be saved. What a tragedy if a Church fails to win the lost. In the Bible you can read of Churches that no longer exist. In some cases, this is true because the cities died. In other cases, it was because the Churches became self-centered and ceased to be soul centered.

1 Thessalonians 1:9-10 (NIV)

9 for they themselves report what kind of reception you gave us. They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, 10 and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead—Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath.

A model Church is…

3. Energetic.

The Thessalonian Christians served enthusiastically. Many of them had been pagans, serving idols. When Paul came with the Gospel of Christ, they made a complete change and became servants of God. We should all serve the Lord in an energetic manner. These Christians also served God expectantly. They believed that Jesus Christ was coming again, and they were waiting for that glorious event. While they were waiting, they did not stop working for the Lord.

Conclusion:

No Church today is identical to the church in Thessalonica. Each church is different. However, there were some outstanding behaviors of that Church which all Churches should imitate it. Every Church should be an example to others, have evangelistic zeal in reaching the lost, and be energetic in service. Churches come to have these vital characteristics only as the members of the Churches have them. The character of a given Church is a reflection of the behavior of its members.

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