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Daily Worship

Bible readings and resources for your time with God




1 Thessalonians 2:1-11



Facing Unfair Opposition

by Pr. Dave Mann

The work of the Apostle Paul was quite difficult, and yet, he continued. At Philippi, he was treated outrageously. He moved south to Thessalonica, perhaps in late 49 or 50 A.D. where he proclaimed the gospel in the face of strong opposition. The apostolic team managed to plant a church there before moving still further south to Corinth.

No doubt, 1 Thessalonians is the earliest of Paul’s letters (approx. 50 A.D.), written in response to Timothy’s report that the young church was holding fast to the gospel, despite persecution. But Paul was being accused by opponents that he had impure motives to gain converts. Paul wrote this letter to defend his honor and to make sure his motives would be evident to all. Paul and his team wanted to make clear to this young group of believers that they were NOT common hucksters traveling from place to place peddling a spiritual snake oil. And so, in this first epistle to the Thessalonians, Paul states what they are NOT:

  • The appeal we make does not spring from error or impure motives.

  • We are not trying to trick you.

  • We are not trying to please people.

  • We never used flattery.

  • We did not put on a mask to cover up greed.

  • We are not looking for praise from people.

He also states what they ARE:

  • We speak as those approved by God, entrusted with the gospel.

  • We loved you so much.

  • We shared with you not only the gospel but our lives as well.

  • We worked day and night in order not to be a burden.

  • We treated you as a father who deals with his own children.

  • We were encouraging, comforting, and urging you to live lives worthy of God.

Paul’s tireless efforts yielded positive results, because the churches, not only in Thessalonica but also in Philippi, continued to grow and thrive. Paul wrote a second letter to the Thessalonians. Both of these letters bear a tone of excitement in the faithfulness of the believing readers. In addition, the letter written to the church in Philippi, where Paul had at first been treated outrageously, became known as the letter of joy.

Are you being treated poorly? Are your motives called into question? Paul’s response in the face of difficulties serves as a worthy example for us to follow. We should state clearly what we are not, and also what we are.


Lord Jesus, though you never promised that the lives of your followers would be blithe and carefree, we have often somehow come to expect such. Grant us the grace to follow in the example of the Apostle Paul and others who have courageously trusted in you. We walk with Jesus, who suffered, died, and rose again. In Jesus’ name, we pray, Amen.

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I Chronicles 23:1-5, I Corinthians 12:7-14




by Elaine Pierce

As David came to the end of his life, he pondered his legacy. Who would be king after him? How would Israel be governed? In this passage in I Chronicles, we see he is making plans for the future. He makes Solomon king, and he assigns tasks/jobs for all the leaders of Israel and the priests and Levites. These duties are all important, but I wonder if those who were assigned to them were happy about their responsibilities.

I wish I were a judge instead of a gatekeeper! How did he get to supervise the work of the temple and I have to 'praise the Lord with a musical instrument?' I imagine that some grumbling and complaining took place. Note, though, that these duties were mostly concerned with corporate worship.

Contrast this scene with how Paul describes spiritual gifts in I Corinthians 12. He doesn't assign groups of people to gifts, does he? In fact, he clarifies that the Holy Spirit 'assigns' gifts:

Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. (I Corinthians 12:7).

Our gifts - whether they be in preaching, or teaching, or healing, or miracles, etc. - are for the common good. They are to build up the body of Christ, to encourage one another to do good works, and to proclaim Christ's name to all who have ears to hear. Just as in David's time, this new church needed the gifts of every believer to do the work of the kingdom. Our 'work' today may seem very different from David and Paul's work, but we are all called to love and serve the Lord, and to bring others into the kingdom.

Kingdom work - what a blessing and a joy it is. Thank God today for how he has gifted you and join him in the work he has for you.


Lord, I long to serve you, and through the work of the Holy Spirit you have given me gifts to praise you and bless others. Help me day by day to follow you and grow in faith, in love, and in hope. Amen.

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Luke 22:13-30




by Mary Alice McGinnis

Do you like surprises? Or are you a person that prefers the predictable?

When I was a child, I snooped around in my parent’s bedroom closet to find my Christmas presents.

One year, several weeks before Christmas, I found my unwrapped present and I was so excited to see the beautiful gift they had picked out just for me.

But when Christmas day arrived and we opened our presents, I was disappointed. Knowing the surprise spoiled all the anticipation and excitement.

Now in my adult years, my JOY comes more from GIVING surprises than receiving them. I think God is the same. Because nothing is a surprise to God.

Today’s reading begins, “They found things just as Jesus had told them.”

Jesus already knew what was ahead for Him. He knew every detail of where they would celebrate the Passover. He knew that Judas would betray Him. He knew that this rag tag bunch would fight among themselves to prove their own self-worth. All the while, He knew all the disciples would flee and desert Him. He knew ALL He was about to suffer.

During this Passover meal, Jesus said some things that caught the disciples totally by surprise.

  • As He broke the bread, He said: “This is My body GIVEN FOR YOU.”

  • As He lifted the cup of wine, He said: “This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is poured out FOR YOU.”

What surprising words these must have been! These words of Jesus would become reality the very next day on Good Friday. His body was broken and given for YOU and me. His blood was poured out FOR YOU and me. He gave these extraordinary gifts for the likes of His rag tag disciples, and for you and me. We, who have betrayed Him. We, who are too caught up with our own self-seeking agendas. We, who go about our superficial lives, totally unaware of the beautiful, surprising love that Jesus lavishes upon us.

Jesus is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He had nothing to prove. All power and authority was at His fingertips. He was given the Kingdom by His Father. Yet instead of using all His power and authority to exalt Himself, He laid it down and took up being a servant. He bled and died so He could bestow on us the most surprising, extraordinary gift – a life with Him in His Kingdom for all eternity.


Lord Jesus, thank You that nothing is a surprise to You. When we are tempted to try to figure things out, help us to rest in Your all-powerful and amazing love for us. When we find ourselves striving to prop up our puny self-esteem, lead us to look upon the sacrifice You made for us. You gave Your body and blood for us. You held nothing back. Thank you for the surprising gift of life with You in Your Kingdom, beginning now and for eternity.

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