Daily Archives: June 12, 2024



‭1 Thessalonians 3:12-13 NLT‬
[12] “And may the Lord make your LOVE for one another and for all people grow and overflow, just as our love for you overflows. [13] May he, as a result, make your hearts strong, blameless, and holy as you stand before God our Father when our Lord Jesus comes again with all his holy people. Amen.“

Such a happy letter! Paul has much to commend the people in the Thessalonian church. They responded to his message, believed the truth and lived it out among the pagans in their city.

Unlike the people in some churches, Thessalonians believers didn’t drag their pagan lifestyle with them into their new lives. Their love for one another was powerful evidence of God’s work of grace in them.

All through the ages, the ‘wheat’ and the ‘weeds’ in the world are left to grow together. When harvest time comes, Jesus said, the wheat and weeds will be separated according to their fruit. The true and the false may be difficult to differentiate as they grow but their fruit will eventually give them away.

So, Paul prays, whatever the Thessalonians believers were doing, do it even more. In this way, when harvest time comes, there will be no doubt about their identity and to whom they belong.

‭1 Thessalonians 4:1 NLT‬
[1] “Finally, dear brothers and sisters, we urge you in the name of the Lord Jesus to live in a way that pleases God, as we have taught you. You live this way already, and we encourage you to do so even more.”

Paul’s prayer for the Philippians Church enshrines this thought.

‭Philippians 1:11 NLT‬
[11] “May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation—the righteous character produced in your life by Jesus Christ—for this will bring much glory and praise to God.”

There is a particular fragrance, an aroma, about those who belong to Jesus, like the fragrance of freshly-picked fruit that identifies its kind.

‭2 Corinthians 2:15 NLT‬
[15]”Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those who are being saved and by those who are perishing.”

As we read through Paul’s letters of correction, instruction, and encouragement to different groups of people, qualities and characteristics begin to emerge that typify true believers.

‭1 Thessalonians 1:3 NLT‬
[3]”As we pray to our God and Father about you, we think of your FAITHFUL WORK , your LOVING DEEDS , and the ENDURING HOPE you have because of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

‭Romans 1:8 NLT‬
[8] “Let me say first that I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your FAITH in him is being talked about all over the world.”

‭Colossians 1:4-5 NLT‬
[4] “For we have heard of your FAITH in Christ Jesus and your LOVE for all of God’s people, [5] which come from your confident HOPE of what God has reserved for you in heaven. You have had this expectation ever since you first heard the truth of the Good News.”

‭1 Corinthians 13:13 NLT‬
[13]”Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.”

Faith, love, hope… the core qualities of believers in Jesus, evidence of the new life in Him, emerge from Paul’s writings. These are the fruit of our salvation.

The fragrance of these fruits pervade the atmosphere around us like sweet perfume. O, that the Lord would fill His people with the fruits of our salvation!

We have Paul’s example to follow as we obey his instruction to pray for all believers everywhere.

‭Ephesians 6:18 NLT‬
[18] “Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.”

Whatever believers are doing that shows their true life in Jesus, pray that they will do it even more. There are spinoffs when we channel our energies into faith, hope and love,

“May he, as a result, make your hearts STRONG , BLAMELESS , and HOLY as you stand before God our Father when our Lord Jesus comes again with all his holy people.”

“… for this will bring much glory and praise to God.”

Isn’t this, after all, what we desire above all else, as God’s beloved children, to be strong, blameless, and holy when we stand before God, and to bring much praise and glory to Him? Our prayers will contribute to the quality of the fruit God’s children bear all over the world that make this possible.