As for us, we can’t help but thank God for you, dear brothersÂ and sisters loved by the Lord. We are always thankful that GodÂ chose you to be among the first to experience salvation — aÂ salvation that came through the Spirit who makes you holy andÂ through your belief in the truthÂ – (2 Thessalonians 2:13)
Salvation is connected to two central realities — first, weÂ trust the truth about Jesus, and second, the Spirit of God comesÂ into our lives, making us holy and making his home inside us. PaulÂ uses it as confirmation to the Thessalonians to help remind them ofÂ their salvation.
Jesus talks about these two central realities withÂ Nicodemus as he explains the new birth (John 3:1-21). Those whoÂ responded to the first message after Jesus’ resurrectionÂ experienced these two realities (Acts 2:33-41). When these twoÂ realities are part of a person’s life, there is reason to rejoiceÂ and give thanks!
Prayer : O Father, my heart is pulled two different directions as I thinkÂ about these two realities. First, I rejoice and give thanks forÂ those I know who have confessed Christ, been baptized, and haveÂ received the Holy Spirit. Second, my heart aches for several that IÂ love deeply that need to experience these realities. O dear Father,Â please use me to encourage the first group and to lead the othersÂ to know Jesus more completely. It is in the name of Jesus, myÂ Savior and Lord, that I pray. Amen.