To the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:2 Grace to you and peace [inner calm and spiritual well-being] from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
3 We ought always and indeed are morally obligated [as those in debt] to give thanks to God for you, [a]brothers and sisters, as is fitting, because your faith is growing ever greater, and the [unselfish] [b]love of each one of you toward one another is continually increasing.4 Therefore, we speak of you with pride among the churches of God for your steadfastness [your unflinching endurance, and patience] and your firm faith in the midst of all the persecution and [crushing] distress which you endure.5 This is a positive proof of the righteous judgment of God [a sign of His fair verdict], so that you will be considered worthy of His kingdom, for which indeed you are suffering.6 For after all it is only just for God to repay with distress those who distress you,7 and to give relief to you who are so distressed and to us as well when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in a flame of fire,8 dealing out [full and complete] vengeance to those who do not [seek to] know God and to those who ignore and refuse to obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus [by choosing not to respond to Him].9 These people will pay the penalty and endure the punishment of [c]everlasting destruction, banished from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power,10 when He comes to be glorified in His saints on that day [that is, glorified through the changed lives of those who have accepted Him as Savior and have been set apart for His purpose], and to be marveled at among all who have believed, because our testimony to you was believed and trusted [and confirmed in your lives].11 With this in view, we constantly pray for you, that our God will count you worthy of your calling [to faith] and with [His] power fulfill every desire for goodness, and complete [your] every work of faith,12 so that the name of our Lord Jesus will be glorified in you [by what you do], and you in Him, according to the [precious] grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
2 Thessalonians 1:3The key to understanding this and other statements about love is to know that this love (the Greek word agape) is not so much a matter of emotion as it is of doing things for the benefit of another person, that is, having an unselfish concern for another and a willingness to seek the best for another.
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