So then, brothers, stand firm. 2 Thessalonians 2:15
There is a kind of preaching that rolls the weight of the world onto the shoulders of Christians. It places people under an intolerable burden. Notice, the apostle Paul doesn’t do that.
Paul has been telling us that the antichrist is coming, the whole world is going to be deceived, and the spirit that animates him is already at work in the world. So, how would you expect this chapter to end? What is Paul’s takeaway for believers in Thessalonica and for us?
There is a view of the world that sees world events like this and says, “It all comes down to you. You’re the last line of defense, so you better not mess up.” That is not how Paul sees it. He ends with a wonderful statement of confidence in God. “We are up against dark forces that are already at work in the world, so stand firm!” Yes, but how do you do that?
When Paul sees the secret power of sin at work in the world, he gives thanks for the church: “We ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers” (2:13). Why? Because while Satan is working, Jesus Christ is also at work. And what is the work of Christ in the world? “I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matt. 16:18).
Don’t miss this: What can you do when you see the world getting darker, evil getting stronger? Thank God for the church. Value what Christ is doing in His people.
What is your response to the evil at work in the world? Are you panicking? Are you folding under the pressure? Or are you giving thanks for the church?