1 Thessalonians 1:2-3; 3:1-3; 2 Thessalonians 1:3-4
Mon, 28 November 2022

1-2 Thessalonians Revisited: Establishing the Walk


What significant observations can you make about discipleship and
disciplemaking in these passages?

Deeper Reflection
IN THE 1970’S, WHEN I WAS A YOUNG BELIEVER AND DISCIPLED by a Navigator, 1 Thessalonians was seen as a letter of Paul on following up new and young believers, especially chapters 1 to 3, from which we could glean principles for disciplemaking. The Thessalonians were young believers whom Paul was forced to leave abruptly by strong opposition against him (Acts 17:1-9). They were left to fend for and feed themselves spiritually – and in adverse circumstances, facing persecutions and suffering afflictions (1 Thess 2:14; 3:4). Paul was fearful that they might fall apart spiritually and fall away from the faith under the onslaught of Satan (1 Thess 3:5).But the Thessalonians did not just survive spiritually but thrive, growing in “work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope” (1 Thess 1:3). Faith, love and hope are fundamentals in the Christian life. And they are grounded in and grow out of a living relationship with God characterised by a consistent, faithful walk with God. The Thessalonians’ faith, love and hope were “growing abundantly” and “increasing” (2 Thess 1:3). Their abundant growth shows that Paul had laid a strong and firm foundation in their walk with God by discipling “each one of you” personally (1 Thess 2:12). The “word of God” that Paul fed them continued to be “at work” in them as they now fed themselves the living Word of God (1 Thess 2:13). And further and deeper disciplemaking took place when Timothy went to “establish and exhort you in the faith” (1 Thess 3:2).True discipleship will not stop there. It wants to give by discipling others.

How can I grow from discipleship to disciplemaking?

Lord, teach me the way of Your decrees, that I may follow it to the end. Give me understanding, so that I may keep Your law and obey it with all my heart. Direct me in the path of Your commands, for there I find delight. Turn my eyes away from worthless things and turn my heart toward Your statutes.43
43 Adapted from Psalm 119:33-37 (NIV)

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Daily Devo
Daily Devotional Journal
Daniel 5:17, 25-31; 6:1-2
Mon, 5 June 2023

Serving from Babylon to Persia


What is the significance of Daniel serving in the Babylonian and Persian
courts successively?

Deeper Reflection
God’s word to Belshazzar that He would “put an end” to his kingdom and give it “over to the Medes and Persians” was fulfilled immediately – “that same night” (v.30) – after Daniel’s interpretation of the inscription on the wall (vv.25-31). God can fulfil His Word immediately or after a long time. Whatever time God may take to fulfil His Word, He is “trustworthy in all His promises and faithful in all He does” (Psa 145:13b, NIV).The demise of the Babylonian hegemony was not just a historical event, but primarily a theological one. Nebuchadnezzar was “My servant” whom God raised to judge His unfaithful people in the seventy-year Babylonian exile (Jer 25:8-9, 11). When God had accomplished His purpose through Babylon, “I will punish the king of Babylon and that nation” (Jer 25:12). This is how God deals with arrogant and evil nations: “And Babylon, the beauty of kingdoms, the glory of the Chaldeans’ pride, will be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah” (Isa 13:19).The end of Babylon does not mean an insecure future for Daniel. However drastically our circumstances may change, God’s call for our lives remains when we walk with Him faithfully. We are secure in God’s call, because it is God’s call. Daniel became one of “the three commissioners” in Persia (Dan 6:1-2). It wasn’t that having lost his job Daniel applied to serve the Persian king. Daniel couldn’t do that. It was purely by royal appointment. But behind the “It seemed good to Darius to appoint” (Dan 6:1) was God’s call for Daniel to serve Him from Babylon to Persia.

How do I relate God’s call for me in drastic changes of my life situations?

Lord, I believe You have a calling for my life which You have intended to be distinctive for me. I want to live my life with a deep sense of answering Your calling. Help me to walk with You faithfully, knowing that as I do so, You will unfold Your plans for me in that calling. Grant me wisdom and understanding to discern Your calling for my life.
Prayer Pointers:
  • Give thanks and praise
  • Pray for leaders
  • Pray for significant people
  • Pray for those in need
  • Pray for self

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