KEY WORDS ARE IMPORTANT. I think that most people know that in sentences, paragraphs, and chapters there are often KEY WORDS to be found. That is so in the Bible. The Apostle Paul has some key words for us today in 1 Thessalonians 4:9-12 NIV. The first is LOVE. “Now about your love for one another we do not need to write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love each other. And in fact, you do love all of God’s family throughout Macedonia. Yet we urge you, brothers and sisters, to do so more and more.” Enough said. You can’t practice true love too much. The second word is QUIET. Paul said, “and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business”. What a wonderful piece of advice from God’s Word. There are too many busy bodies today injecting themselves into other people’s business. From the government, to family members, to neighbors, to people on social media, you name it. Oh, for the quiet life!
The third word is WORK. Paul said, “and work with your hands, just as we told you, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.” God intended that people, under normal circumstances, should work and not be dependent on other people to provide for them. In our society today there are far too many lazy people who refuse to work and expect others to provide for them. Christians should make sure they don’t fall into this category. The fourth and final word is RESPECT. Paul said that our daily life consisting of loving others, living a quiet life, and working to provide for ourselves would result “so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders.” Isn’t that what we want to do? We want to win the respect of the non-Christians so that they can see Christ in us and hear the gospel from us and come to Christ. May God help us to live our lives in this manner.