Click here to go to our Facebook Live page and join us through video at 10AM on Sunday Mornings, or to watch previous videos already posted.
Awake – Time to Get to Work
[2 Thessalonians 3: 6 – 18]
Those who are spiritually awake are blessed by being engaged in a physical vocation.
Jesus desires more from his followers than laziness
[7 – 12] For you yourselves know how you must imitate us: We were not irresponsible among you; we did not eat anyone’s food free of charge; instead, we labored and struggled, working night and day, so that we would not be a burden to any of you. It is not that we don’t have the right to support, but we did it to make ourselves an example to you so that you would imitate us. In fact, when we were with you, this is what we commanded you: “If anyone isn’t willing to work, he should not eat.” For we hear that there are some among you who walk irresponsibly, not working at all, but interfering with the work of others. Now we command and exhort such people by the Lord Jesus Christ that quietly working, they may eat their own food.
[Matthew 10:10] Don’t take a traveling bag for the road, or an extra shirt, sandals, or a walking stick, for the worker is worthy of his food.
[Colossians 3:17] And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.
[Genesis 3: 17b – 19] And He said to Adam, “Because you listened to your wife’s voice and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘Do not eat from it’: The ground is cursed because of you. You will eat from it by means of painful labor all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. You will eat bread by the sweat of your brow until you return to the ground, since you were taken from it. For you are dust, and you will return to dust.”
Jesus expects more from his church than complicity
 Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to keep away from every brother who walks irresponsibly and not according to the tradition received from us.
[13 – 15] Brothers, do not grow weary in doing good. And if anyone does not obey our instruction in this letter, take note of that person; don’t associate with him, so that he may be ashamed. Yet don’t treat him as an enemy, but warn him as a brother.
[1 Corinthians 5: 9 – 11] I wrote to you in a letter not to associate with sexually immoral people. I did not mean the immoral people of this world or the greedy and swindlers or idolaters; otherwise you would have to leave the world. But now I am writing you not to associate with anyone who claims to be a believer who is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or verbally abusive, a drunkard or a swindler. Do not even eat with such a person.
[2 Corinthians 2: 6 – 8] The punishment inflicted by the majority is sufficient for that person. As a result, you should instead forgive and comfort him. Otherwise, this one may be overwhelmed by excessive grief. Therefore I urge you to reaffirm your love to him.
[Matthew 18: 15 – 17] “If your brother sins against you, go and rebuke him in private. If he listens to you, you have won your brother. But if he won’t listen, take one or two more with you, so that by the testimony of two or three witnesses every fact may be established. If he pays no attention to them, tell the church. But if he doesn’t pay attention even to the church, let him be like an unbeliever and a tax collector to you.
Jesus gives more to his people than instructions
[16 – 18] May the Lord of peace Himself give you peace always in every way. The Lord be with all of you. This greeting is in my own hand —Paul. This is a sign in every letter; this is how I write. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with all of you.
[Ruth 2:4] Later, when Boaz arrived from Bethlehem, he said to the harvesters, “The Lord be with you.” “The Lord bless you,” they replied.
[Matthew 18:20] …teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
[Numbers 6: 24 – 26] May Yahweh bless you and protect you; may Yahweh make His face shine on you and be gracious to you; may Yahweh look with favor on you and give you peace.
Applications and Next Steps
If you are unemployed, what could you do in the new year?
If you are employed, how could you improve your efforts?
If the Apostle Paul were to write a letter to Chicagoland Community Church what would be his focused area of exhortation?
How can we better imitate Jesus’ (and Paul’s) example here in the Lakeview neighborhood?
Have you received the grace and peace of being a disciple?
Click here for a Connection Card to respond to what Jesus is telling you today.
Click here to give generously towards what God is doing through his church in the Lakeview Neighborhood of Chicago.