Paul’s Footsteps #83

Footsteps #83

Luke does not tell us the actual content of Paul’s message in Thessalonica, but I can imagine the scriptures he used Like Micah 5:1&2 detailing His birth, or the incredible Messianic passages of Isa 50 to 53 from the grand Messianic poem, a splendid masterpiece containing the glorious message about the mission, message, and accomplishments of the Christ (Messiah). I’m sure he spoke of the Psalms that so accurately picture the events of the cross and from which Jesus quoted from 3 times in His 7-sentence sermon from the cross. The psalms so clearly portray the gospel.   

The effect of Paul’s preaching is clearly stated in v4 as many succumbed to the work of the Holy Spirit on their hearts.  Is it any wonder that many embraced his teaching with whole-heartedness and Thessalonica became one of the most zealous of Paul’s churches? This church became a famous model church in all of Macedonia. The epistle to the Thessalonians, which is one of the earliest letters of Paul that we have (Galatians was first), was written within a month or two of His departure. 

Unfortunately, like the sun that either melts wax or hardens clay, the work of the Spirit hardened the hearts of the “jealous Jews,” and they rose up against Paul and Silas, and set the city in an uproar.  The remarkable thing in Paul’s stay is that of the jealousy and hatred of the Jews. Those to whom Paul felt in his heart a tender affection as fellow brethren, were the plague and misery of his whole suffering life. There can be fellow Christians today that cause us similar angst.  

These Jews abhorred preaching of a crucified Messiah. They were ‘jealous’ that Paul should in a few weeks have won a greater multitude of adherents than they had ever won since Moses, and furious at the fact that Paul won over the leading men and women. This is the “power of the Holy Spirit” (Acts1:8) that attended Paul’s preaching.

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