Daily Thoughts : February 27th
2 Thess 3:2 And pray that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men, for not everyone has faith
We've commented recently that is important to see even these verses in context. Paul has just said, “pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored, just as it was with you.” (v.1). He has in mind the spreading of the Gospel but our verse today reminds us that it was not always easy going. In fact as you read through the book of Acts you see how often Paul was opposed. Mostly it was by the traditional Jews who objected to him bringing what they saw as a new religion, but the way they did it was wrong. They often sought to kill him! No wonder he warns about wicked and evil men. Nice or good men don't try to kill you!
Within all this Paul reminds us that not everyone is open to the Gospel. There are those whose minds are closed to God and, more than that, are openly hostile to us. We may seek to be full of grace and truth, but they don't! But in case that worries you he adds: “But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.” (v.3). That is the promise: He will first of all strengthen you so that you will not weaken in the face of such unkind opposition, and then He will protect you from the activity of the enemy through such people.
As unkind as it sounds, these are people who are motivated and energized by the enemy, and because he is out to destroy us (as part of God's work), so they too, seek to come against us. We are warned so that we may be alert and vigilant. Don't be pulled down by unrighteous or evil people, but pray for them. Be on the alert to 'spiritual warfare', realise that we have a spiritual enemy who is to be overcome by spiritual means, but sometimes he uses human beings as his agents and therefore we need to overcome them by love, perseverance, grace, wisdom and prayer.
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