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1-5 And so at length, when the separation became intolerable, we thought the best plan was for me to stay in Athens alone, while Timothy, our brother and fellow-worker in the Gospel of Christ, was sent to strengthen and encourage you in your faith. We did not want any of you to lose heart at the troubles you were going through, but to realise that we Christians must expect such things. Actually we did warn you what to expect, when we were with you, and our words have come true, as you know. You will understand that, when the suspense became unbearable, I sent someone to find out how your faith was standing the strain, and to make sure that the tempter’s activities had not destroyed our work.

The good news about you is a tonic to us

6-10 But now that Timothy has just come straight from you to us—with a glowing account of your faith and love, and definite news that you cherish happy memories of us and long to see us as much as we to see you—how these things have cheered us in all the miseries and troubles we ourselves are going through. To know that you are standing fast in the Lord is indeed a breath of life to us. How can we thank our God enough for all the joy you give us as we serve him, praying earnestly day and night to see you again, and to complete whatever is imperfect in your faith?

This is our prayer for you

11-13 So may God our Father himself and our Lord Jesus Christ guide our steps to you. May the Lord give you the same increasing and overflowing love for each other and towards all men as we have towards you. May he establish you, holy and blameless in heart and soul, before himself, the Father of us all, when our Lord Jesus Christ comes with all who belong to him.