6-Week Series: Against All Odds


Summary: Part 1 of a 2-part sermon. Paul’s deep concern for the Thessalonian Christians was foundational to his apostolic ministry. The undershepherd’s chief concern is evident thru...


—1Thessalonians 2:17—3:13

Previously we have seen....

‘A Faith that Soothes the Soul’—1:1-10

‘A Ministry that Shepherds the Soul’—2:1-12

‘The Work of the Word’—2:13-16

Paul’s deep concern for the Thessalonian Christians was foundational to his apostolic ministry.

A deep concern for the well-being of the flock underlies an apostolic/undershepherd’s ministry.

How do the underlying concerns of the undershepherd ministry become obvious/evident?

5 occasions when the underlying concerns of the undershepherd’s ministry become evident.

1—The undershepherd’s chief concern is evident thru

The BEREAVEMENT Experienced(:17-20)


:17—“"But we, brethren, having been taken away from you for a short time in presence, not in heart, endeavored more eagerly to see your face with great desire.”

“Taken away/Bereft/Taken from”—??????????—To bereave of a parent or parents. From —???????—Bereft (of a father, of parents); Of those bereft of a teacher, guide, guardian; Orphaned.

“Great desire/More abundantly”—????? ????????—Desire, craving, longing, desire for what is forbidden, lust.

:18—“Therefore we wanted to come to you--even I, Paul, time & again--but Satan hindered us.”

“Thwarted/Hindered”—???????—To cut into, to impede one’s course by cutting off his way; Hinder.

2Cor. 12:7—“And because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to buffet me--to keep me from exalting myself!”

:19—“For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Is it not even you in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at His coming?”

“Hope”—?????—Hope; From a primary ????—To anticipate, usually with pleasure).

“Joy”—????—Joy, gladness.

“Exultation”—????????—The act of glorying; Boasting (properly, the act; by implication, the object), in a good or a bad sense:-- boasting, whereof I may glory, glorying, rejoicing.

:20—“For you are our glory & joy.”

“Our glory”—That which speaks of your effort in Christ.

“Our joy”—That which gives personal professional satisfaction.


Military family/Soldier is taken away by obligations/Desire to be home/War effort hinders/BEREAVEMENT

Jimmy Harrison/Battle with cancer/Misses his freedom to worship corporately/BEREAVEMENT

Roger Singletary/Hernia operation/Misses his contribution to our fellowship/BEREAVEMENT


?You make BEREAVEMENT a concern of apostolic ministry?

?Are the Concerns of apostolic ministry Apparent?

2—The undershepherd’s chief concern is evident thru

The PREOCCUPATION Experienced(3:1-5)


:1—“"Therefore, when we could no longer endure it, we thought it good to be left in Athens alone, ”

“Endure”—?????—Deck, thatch, to cover; To cover over with silence; By covering to keep off something which threatens, To bear up against, hold out against, & so endure, bear, forbear.


Acts 17:10-15—“And the brethren immediately sent Paul & Silas away by night to Berea; & when they arrived, they went into the synagogue of the Jews. Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily, to see whether these things were so. Many of them therefore believed, along with a number of prominent Greek women & men. But when the Jews of Thessalonica found out that the word of God had been proclaimed by Paul in Berea also, they came there likewise, agitating & stirring up the crowds. And then immediately the brethren sent Paul out to go as far as the sea; & Silas & Timothy remained there. Now those who conducted Paul brought him as far as Athens; & receiving a command for Silas & Timothy to come to him as soon as possible, they departed.”

:2—“& sent Timothy, our brother & minister of God, & our fellow laborer in the gospel of Christ, to establish you & encourage you concerning your faith,”

“Fellow worker”—????????—One who executes the commands of another, esp. of a master, a servant, attendant, minister.

“Strengthen”—???????—To make stable, place firmly, set fast, fix; To strengthen, make firm; To render constant, confirm, one’s mindto make stable, place firmly, set fast, fix; To strengthen, make firm; To render constant, confirm, one’s mind.

“Encourage”—?????????—To call to one’s side, call for, summon; To address, speak to, (call to, call upon), which may be done in the way of exhortation, entreaty, comfort, instruction, etc. Translated —“Comforted” in :7.

:3—“that no one should be shaken by these afflictions; for you yourselves know that we are appointed to this.”

“Disturbed”—?????—To wag the tail; to flatter, fawn upon; To move (the mind of one).

“Afflictions”—??????—A pressing, pressing together, pressure; Metaph. oppression, affliction, tribulation, distress, straits.

“Appointed/Destined”—??????—To lie; Of things put or set in any place, in ref. to which we often use "to stand"....Of vessels, of a throne, of the site of a city, of grain & other things laid up together, of a foundation; To be (by God’s intent) set, i.e. destined, appointed....Of laws, to be made, laid down.

:4—“For, in fact, we told you before when we were with you that we would suffer tribulation, just as it happened, & you know.”

“In advance”—???????—To say beforehand, to predict.

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