Today’s Readings are Daniel 2:1-23 and 2 Thess 1
Little has changed between Paul’s first letter and his second. Persecution was happening then and it is still happening now (1:4). The crew are still together, Paul, Silas and Timothy.
He writes again because of a new controversy and challenge that has risen (2:2). As always, arguments like this create energy for the idle and increase the fears of the faint hearted. This letter is a simple and tactful pastoral letter devoted almost entirely to encouraging the faint hearted.
“We ought always thank God for you.”(3)
“Your faith is growing more and more.”(3)
“We boast about your perseverance.”(4)
“You will be counted worthy of the kingdom of God.”(5)
“He will give relief to those who are troubled.” (7)
“He will punish those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.”(9)
As Paul reminds them of all these things he also further encourages them by letting them know that they are constantly in his prayers.
In spite of all of this the church at Thessalonica is characterised by a dynamic faith and a devoted love which has been inspired by Jesus himself. Even though they experience opposition they should not be fearful. Our Lord himself suffered at the hands of others.
There joy and indeed our joy allows us to experience relief from affliction and to enjoy life in its greatest measure as we all share in the presence of God in christ.
May this be so for us.