Online Bible


1 Thessalonians 2 - An Understandable Version (2005 edition)

Paul’s Ministry in Thessalonica

1. For you brothers [should] know that our coming to you was not a waste of time.

2. But [even though] we had already suffered and been mistreated at Philippi [See Acts 16:19-24], as you people know, we had the boldness, [with help] from God, to tell you His message in spite of much struggle [i.e., opposition].

3. For our appeal [to you was] not based on error, or impure [motives], or deception.

4. Instead, we speak as men approved by God to be entrusted with the Gospel. So, we speak, not trying to please people but God, who examines [the motives of] our hearts.

5. For we were never found using flattering words at any time, as you know, nor did we try to cover up any greedy desires. God can testify [to this].

6. [And] we were not looking for honor from people, either from you or from anyone else, even though, as apostles of Christ, we could have become a burden [to you]. [Note: The idea seems to be that the apostles could have claimed financial support, but chose not to].

7. But we were gentle among you, like a nursing mother caring for her children.

8. And so, since we have such deep affection for you, we were very pleased to share with you, not only the Gospel of God, but also our own lives, because you had become very dear to us.

9. For you brothers remember how we labored and toiled, working hard night and day, so that we would not burden any of you [while] we proclaimed to you the Gospel of God.

10. You can testify, [just] as God can, how holy, righteous and blameless our conduct was toward you believers.

11. For you know that we treated each one of you like a father treats his own children, exhorting you, and comforting you,

12. and urging you to live up to the standards of God, who calls you into His own kingdom and splendor.

13. And because of this we also thank God continually that, when you people received the message of God, which you heard from us, you did not accept it as a message from [mere] human beings, but as it truly is, the message from God, which is at work in you believers.

14. For you brothers became imitators of the churches of God in Judea, which are in [fellowship with] Christ, for you people also suffered the same things from your own countrymen that they did from the Jews,

15. who killed the Lord Jesus and the [Old Testament] prophets and also drove us [apostles] out [of Thessalonica and Berea. See Acts 17]. They are not pleasing to God and are hostile to all people,

16. for they [even] try to prevent us from speaking to the Gentiles, so that they can be saved. [In doing this] they are always piling up one sin on another. But the wrath [of God] has come upon them at last [or, “completely”].

Paul’s Longing to See the Thessalonians

17. But brothers, after we were separated from you for a short time --- in person but not in spirit --- we became all the more eager [to come to you] and strongly desired to see you in person. [Note: The word “separated” here denotes the traumatic experience of a child being forcibly removed from its parents. It had been about six months since Paul left Thessalonica under adverse circumstances].

18. For we [really] wanted to come to you [and] I, Paul, [even tried to come] more than once, but Satan prevented us. [Note: This was probably accomplished through the influence of certain people or circumstances].

19. For what is [the basis of] our hope, or joy, or crown of honor in the presence of the Lord Jesus when He comes back? [Note: By “crown” Paul alludes to the laurel wreath awarded to the victor in an athletic contest]. Will it not be you people?

20. For you people are [indeed] our [occasion for] honor and joy.