From the earliest churches in the Roman Empire, who cared for the poor and diseased, through innumerable charitable works today, the church has always cared for the disadvantaged. But what of those who seek relief but aren’t in need?
Although the rules set forth by Paul are from the philosophers, the motivation for Paul is wholly Christian. The philosophers were concerned with the rational life so giving in to sexual desire was irrational and thus prohibited. On the contrary, Paul’s motivation was attaining a sanctified life in the Spirit.
For tonight, think through how we in the church today are like the Jewish persecutors of the church in Thessalonica. How do we judge who does and does not belong in the Kingdom of God? Who are the Gentiles whom we are certain are not citizens of God’s Kingdom because our reading of the Scriptures says so?