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Hearts Directed into the Love of God (2 Thessalonians 3)

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2 Thessalonians 3

Paul asks for prayer
Finally, brothers, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may run swiftly and be glorified, even as also it is with you. 2 And that we may be delivered from unreasonable and evil men. For all do not have faith. 3 But the Lord is faithful, who shall establish you and guard you from the evil. 4 And we have confidence in the Lord concerning you, that you both do, and will do, the things which we command; 5 and so may the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the patient waiting for Christ.

Discipline those who just want material benefit from you
   6 Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw yourselves from every brother that walks disorderly and not after the tradition which they received from us. 7 For yourselves know how you ought to imitate us. For we ourselves did not behave disorderly among you, 8 neither did we eat bread for nothing at anyone's hand; but we ate our bread as the result of our own labour and toil, working night and day, that we might not financially burden any of you. 9 Not because we do not have the right to do so, but to make ourselves an example to you- that you should imitate us. 10 For even when we were with you, this we commanded you: If any will not work, neither let him eat of your food. 11 For we hear of some that walk among you disorderly, that do not work at all but are busybodies. 12 Now those that are such we command and exhort in the Lord Jesus Christ, that with quietness they work and eat their own bread.
   13 But you, brothers, be not weary in doing good. 14 And if anyone does not obey our word by this letter, note that man, that you have no association with him, so that he may be ashamed. 15 But do not count him as an enemy, but warn him as a brother. 16 Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in all ways. The Lord be with you all.
   17 The salutation of me Paul with my own hand, which is the token in every epistle. So I write. 18 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.


3:5 The Lord Jesus is able to directly influence human minds [hearts].

3:6 Withdraw yourselves- This verse is in the context of verses 7-12, concerning some who were “disorderly” in that they were involved with the church simply in order to get money, and refused to work when they could do so. Verse 6 doesn’t mean we should withdraw ourselves from anyone who breaks any commandment of Jesus, for we all do this. The verse speaks about the specific situation of those seeking to gain money from being members of the church in Thessalonica.

3:9 Sometimes it’s better not to do something which we could legitimately do, because of the bad example it may set, and because it may be misunderstood and misused by others who are weaker.

3:14 This is to be understood the same way as v. 6.