October 14, 2001

                                I Thessalonians 4:1-12

 

God calls them to holiness & renuciation of their heathen

practices - Importance of living in harmony with the Divine Will!

 

v. 1 - Then - in order that you may be established unblameable

            in holiness at the coming of the Lord Jesus.

 

Holiness the design of revelation - John 17:17, 21

 

Do your part - walk & please God in conduct.  Enoch walked

with God - Gen. 5:21-24,        Hebrews 11:5

 

The father of Methuselah - when he dies judgment will come.

Methuselah died the year the flood came.

 

Article in religious section of New Era 10/13/01

 

To please God - the highest Christian ambition.

Consciousness of pleasing Him - the Christian’s highest joy!

 

Ps. 149:4         Zeph. 3:17       Ps. 35:27b

 

v. 2 - Commandments from the Lord Jesus

 

v. 3 - The will of God, your sanctification - the restoration

            to the moral image of God.  (separation to God)

 

Complete consecration - holiness the design of God.

Consecration of faculties & power of body & mind to

God’s service - personal purity in heart & life.

 

Sanctification is the work of God where His grace renews

the whole man after the image of God, and enables us to

die unto sin and live unto righteousness.

 

II Cor. 7:1       Titus 2:14       Eph. 2:10

 

“abstain from fornication” - a sin against God - Gen. 39:9b

 

A vice fearfully prevalent among the heathen.

 

Lev. 19:2 - “Ye shall be holy:  for I the Lord your God

                        am holy”

 

II Peter 1:4 - “corruption that is in the world through lust”

 

Rom. 8:5-8

 

Not only a sin against God, but a sin against our neighbor,

and a sin against our own body.  I Cor. 6:18

 

v. 4 - Mastery over “his vessel” - the body  - Rom. 6:19,13

 

“a vessel unto honor, sanctified and meet for the Master’s use”

II Tim. 2:21

 

Fatal consequences of not having mastery over the body.

 

* Wastes the body - Job 20:11 - “his bones are full of the

            sin of his youth which shall lie down with him in the dust”

 

Instead of Paul’s statement “I bear in my body the marks of

the Lord Jesus” - they say I bear in my body venereal disease

or the AIDS virus - "receiving in themselves that recompense

of their error which was meet." - Rom. 1:27

 

“Now the body is not for fornication but for the Lord” - I Cor. 6:13

 

* Wars against the soul - I Peter 2:11 - “abstain from fleshly

            lusts which war against the soul”

 

* Causes shame - “for by the means of a whorish woman shall

            a man be brought to a piece of bread” - Proverbs 6:26a

 

* Excludes from the kingdom of God - I Cor. 6:9, Rev. 21:6-8

 

v. 5 - “not in the lust of concupiscence” - the moral sense

            of the heathen so perverted & their nature so corrupt,      

            they look upon fornication with indifference.

 

Amid the evil surroundings of a heathen town, living in an

atmosphere of depraved public opinion, new converts were

exposed to constant & great dangers (they didn’t have TV,

VCR’s, rental movies) - Cowboys & Indians as a child.

 

When I was a child, it was a time when fornication was

walking in darkness, Christianity, having driven it there.

 

John 3:19-20

 

Fornication cuts a soul away from God, fills the heart with

impure images and unholy desires.  It drives out of the heart the

thought of God, it cannot pray, cannot endure the thought of

God and His Presence in awful purity.

 

Think of the effects of pornography! 

 

Ps. 51:7-12

 

Prov. 30:20 - “Such is the way of an adulterous woman, she

            eateth, and wipeth her mouth, and saith, I have done

            no wickedness”

 

“sanctification & honor” - a very high & heavenly state by

the grace of God within our reach.

 

I Cor. 1:30 - “ye in Christ ...... who of God is made unto us...

            sanctification.”

 

v. 6 - Defraud - his brother - a breach upon family honor -

            the high calling where we are called unto liberty,

            created unto good works, called to be saints,

            representatives of Him who said “be ye holy for

            I am holy”

 

The corruption of the word “agape” by “eros”.

 

Uncleanness usurps & degrades the sacred name of love.

 

The sensual man ruins in body and in soul those whom he

professes to love.  He uses words of tenderness.  He is the

most cruel, the deadliest enemy in his wicked selfishness.

He cares not for the nearest and holiest ties.  He sins

against the sanctity of matrimony.  He brings misery upon

families.  Seeking only the gratification of his own wicked

lust, he transgresses and wrongs  his brethren.

 

The Lord is the avenger of all such things.  “Marriage is

honorable in all and the bed undefiled but whoremongers

and adulterers, God will judge.” - Heb. 13:4

 

 

Therefore “flee fornication” - I Cor. 6:18

“escape for thy life” - Gen. 19:17

 

v. 7 - Read

 

v. 8 - “he therefore that despiseth....despiseth God”

 

Freud et. al.    Eph. 5:5-6

 

God ordained family relations & any dishonor is a

contempt of His authority.

 

Bonus - A Boon - “but God.....hath also given unto us

                                    His Holy Spirit”

 

James 1:12-16

 

v. 9 - Brotherly love - a new word - philadelphia.

 

Love - taught of God - the influence of His Spirit.

 

GOD IS LOVE! - I John 4:7-11, 19-21

 

The need of churches today, the need of myself,

 

The greatest task in life - life is wasted if we do not learn

this before we die - for Heaven is the home of love, love

is a debt which we will never fully repay.

 

II Cor. 5:14-15

 

 

We are brethren:  Children of the same Father, brethren

            of the same Savior, members of the same Family,

            sharers of the same Grace, expectant of same

            Glorious Immortality.

 

We share the same blessings, the same redemption, are

walking in the same pilgrimage and traveling on life’s

highway together to the same home.

 

We are workmen, not judges!

 

v. 10 - “increase more & more - make progress in

            brotherly love, purity, warmth, extent.

 

Love - the command of Christ - John 13:34

Example of Christ - Eph. 5:2, I Peter 2:21b

Glory of Christ in the world promoted by love - John 13:35

 

Col. 3:13         Eph. 4:32        Eph. 3:17-19

 

v. 11 - Be ambitious to be quiet - worldly ambition is

            restless, so is political ambition, social rivalry.

 

“do your own business” - guard against idleness, the

Devil’s workshop - the effects of welfare.

 

Goal is to have these forces so placed under Divine

restraints, so moderated by reason, justice and love,

modesty & sobriety, so that we may do our own business.

 

v. 12 - “walk honestly toward them that are without”

            Col. 4:5-6        I Peter 3:15-16

 

“that ye may have lack of nothing”