1. Respect for Leaders (5:12–15)
1. Respect for Leaders (5:12-15)

The local leaders may have been under pressure from those with flawed views on the Parousia. Paul reminds them that their leaders have authority from the Lord. Honour and respect is to be given in love to them.

Paul singles out three groups: the idle, the timid, and the weak. Patience is to be shown to all, even towards those who actually deserve far worse.

“Getting even” is not to be tolerated in the church (see Mt 5:44-48; Lk 6:27-36). Rather the Christian response to wrong, whatever the source, is to try to bring good out of evil. This challenges the spirit of our age in which retaliation is seen as strength and any attempt to return good for evil is seen as weakness.