Persuasive Behaviors

1 Thessalonians   •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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This message will investigate Paul's persuasive behaviors.



Preaching requires a great deal of caution.
Handling divine truth cannot be haphazard or shooting from the hip.
If people are going to have sound faith, they need sound teaching.
False teaching, no matter how innocent, will result in people believing the wrongly.
If the blind lead the blind, both will end up in the ditch.
The Gospel demands a change of life and eternity.
It is easy to be accused of “messing with people’s heads” or toying with them.
What indicates the preacher is acting in good faith when he preaches the word of God?
Paul connected together behavior, truth, and lifestyle in his final letter to Timothy.
See 2 Tim. 3:10-13.
See 2 Tim. 3:16-17.
In this message, we will expand upon the enormity of the Thessalonians conversion by considering what it was about Paul that persuaded them to abandon reality as they knew and accept something entirely new.

A Reminder of a Substantive Entrance

1 Thess. 2:1 does not constitute a new line of thought, per se.
This expands upon the line of thought Paul began in 1 Thess. 1:5.
There, Paul first used the phrase “just as you all know.”
He began to remind the Thessalonians what they knew about his time among them.
Paul introduced the language of “entrance” in 1 Thess. 1:9.
Although they are not mentioned, Paul must know his reputation as an apostle has been questioned by those trying to persuade the Thessalonians out of their association with Jesus.
Paul wants the Thessalonians to recollect his conduct.
In an ambiguous phrase, he calls upon their memory that it “has not come to be vain.”
It does not stand empty.
By vain, he must have two things in mind given the context:
His time in Thessalonica was productive, as they themselves are living proof.
But, based upon where he takes this conversation, he must also mean they know the entrance was not meaningless.
Paul seems to mean that he wasn’t “putting on a show, pretending, or spewing ideas to make money.” Notice the context above and below indicates others knew about Paul because of the response of the Thessalonians. And, to “flesh out” his use of “vain,” Paul gives characteristics about himself.

The Evidence of Persistence

Here, as above, the Thessalonians are very familiar with this information.
Acts 16:16-24.
He seems to be saying that his willingness to preach the gospel honestly amid persecution gave him credibility as well as the gospel itself.
It suggested he really believed his ideas to be true.
Having previously suffering and having been maltreated in a scoffing and insulting manner, Paul was bold in God to speak to the Thessalonians.
This in spite of great struggle, that is the danger, encountered in Thessalonica.
Having the wherewithal to go through an ordeal and yet to continue preaching the same message while the threat grew in Thessalonica suggested Paul was a man of substance and the message he bore had substance.
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