You may have authentic faith if… you are joyful, pray without ceasing, and in everything, we give thanks (1 Thessalonians 5:16–18).
Welcome to Day Six of our series of “You may have authentic faith if …” Today, I will talk about joy, prayer, and giving thanks. The believers in Thessalonica needed an attitude adjustment. Paul again warns the believers concerning our personal lives before God. In this letter, he wrote three essential aspects they need to change.
Be Joyful or Rejoice Always
One thing good about joy is that it takes the burden off our service and it is good to remember that “the joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10). God loves two types of cheerful people, servants, and givers. God gives us every reason to rejoice. Paul reminds everyone to rejoice in all situations, not for the circumstances that are happening.
- First, Paul and Silas were beaten in the middle of the market in Acts 16. What did they do when thrown in jail, rejoiced!
- Second, when Paul shipwrecked in Acts 28, he rejoiced!
- Third, when Paul was in prison awaiting execution, he rejoiced (Philippians 4:4; 12-13).
Furthermore, our joy should never come from our circumstances, but from the blessings we have because we are in Christ (Luke 10:20). God wants His entire family to be happy and we need to contribute to joy.
Pray Without Ceasing or Never Stop Praying
Prayer is the first of two elements of worship. As it was essential in the early church, it is the same today. Praying maintains constant fellowship with God. Constant praying is not praying that continues without any interruptions, but it continues when possible.
The phrase “pray without ceasing” does not mean to constantly murmur prayers during the day. Most people will think that you are acting very strange or something is wrong. Ceasing means persistently recurring and not endlessly occurring. Therefore, with authentic faith, we need to be in touch with God and know that He hears us even when we are silent (Psalm 10:17).
Be Thankful in All Circumstances
The second element of worship is praise, which comes in being thankful. Paul’s circumstances leading up to his execution are a prime example of how we are to be thankful. Everyone he came in contact with during his journeys and trials, he gave thanks to God.
In Ephesians 5:19, we can use psalms and hymns to give thanks and praise to God. It is one of many ways we show our love and gratitude. The reason for giving thanks always is in Romans 8:28 as God works all things for good to those who love him.
Therefore, in showing our authentic faith, we must understand how essential rejoicing, prayer, and praise or being thankful is, which shows the true authenticity of our faith. We must daily mix joy, prayer, and thanks in our lives. When others see these three qualities, as believers, we are energetic witnesses to a needy and lost world, Amen!
I am Dale Van De Bogart and I approve of this message!
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