God’s word is jammed full of his big-picture plan for the world. It is a plan for joy and purpose, for love and justice, for goodness and mercy to rule the day.
How can we know that our good works aren’t our ticket into heaven? Doesn’t this passage say that we are “to do good works”? To find our answers, let’s look at our verse in its greater context.
In chapter one of John we see better that Jesus’ claim to be THE light is a claim to be the divine Son of God.
Why would a self-sufficient Being sacrifice his very Self for the selfish. Why would a wholly perfect Person be crushed to make the broken whole?
Paul wishes the hearts of his Thessalonian friends to be drawn into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance.
He is saying, “don’t just sit there thinking about all of these lovely, pure, excellent things, but live them out.”
If you are in Sunday School and there is a lollipop on the line, but you weren’t paying close attention, there’s a good likelihood that if you answer, “Jesus”, you’re gonna get that lollipop.
In the first chapter of Philippians, Paul prays for his friends that their love would grow in knowledge and discernment.