How we exhorted - What pastoral care is marked here! They exhorted - were continually teaching and instructing, the objects of their charge; this was their general work.
And comforted - They found many under trials and temptations, and those they encouraged.
And charged - Μαρτυρουμενοι· Continued witness to the people that all the threatenings and promises of God were true; that he required faith, love, and obedience; that he could not behold sin with allowance; that Jesus died to save them from their sins; and that, without holiness, none should see God. And all these things they did, not in a general way only, but they spoke to every man; none was left unnoticed, unadmonished, uncomforted. The spirit in which they performed all these branches of the pastoral care was that which was most likely to insure success; as a father treats his children, so they treated every member of the Church.
How we exhorted - That is, to a holy life.
And comforted - In the times of affliction.
And charged - Greek, “testified.” The word testify is used here in the sense of protesting, or making an earnest and solemn appeal. They came as witnesses from God of the truth of religion, and of the importance of living in a holy manner They did not originate the gospel themselves, or teach its duties and doctrines as their own, but they came in the capacity of those who bore witness of what God had revealed and required, and they did this in the earnest and solemn manner which became such an office.
As a father doth his children - With an interest in your welfare, such as a father feels for his children, and with such a method as a father would use. It was not done in a harsh, dictatorial, and arbitrary manner, but in tenderness and love.
The words of warning and instruction that I have written in regard to the sending of our youth to Battle Creek to receive a training for service in the Lord's cause are not idle words. Some God-fearing youth will stand the test, but it is not safe for us to leave even the most conscientious ones without our best care and protection. Whether or not our youth who have received wise instruction and training from godly parents will continue to be sanctified through the truth depends largely upon the influence that, after leaving their homes, they meet among those to whom they look for Christian instruction. 8T 226.1
I am instructed to repeat to our brethren and sisters the warning and the exhortation that Paul sent to the church at Thessalonica: 8T 226.2
“The mystery of lawlessness doth already work: only there is one that restraineth now, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall be revealed the lawless one, whom the Lord Jesus shall slay with the breath of His mouth, and bring to nought by the manifestation of His coming; even he, whose coming is according to the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceit of unrighteousness for them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God sendeth them a working of error, that they should believe a lie: that they all might be judged who believe not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” 2 Thessalonians 2:7-12, A. R. V. 8T 226.3Read in context »
“Ye are witnesses, and God also,” the apostle continued, “how holily and justly and unblamably we behaved ourselves among you that believe: as ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father doth his children, that ye would walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto His kingdom and glory. AA 257.1
“For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.” “What is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at His coming? For ye are our glory and joy.” AA 257.2
In his first epistle to the Thessalonian believers, Paul endeavored to instruct them regarding the true state of the dead. He spoke of those who die as being asleep—in a state of unconsciousness: “I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with Him.... For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the Archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” AA 257.3Read in context »