A Bible Study on 1 Thessalonians 1
Does Your Reputation Really Matter?
Should we worry about what other people think of us? Some Christians say that it doesn’t matter what others think of us, but that we should only worry about trying to please of Heavenly Father. There is truth in this statement. However, the Bible also says that we are Christ’s ambassadors in this world, and we have been given the privilege and responsibility to represent Him to all we come in contact with.
Even though we shouldn’t live our lives to please the men and women around us, we do need to live a life that gives off the sweet aroma of the attributes of Christ so that people genuinely see something different in us.
1 Thessalonians 1:3-8
We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers. We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ…And so you became a model to all the believers in Madedonia and Achaia. The Lord’s message rang out from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia—your faith in God has become known everywhere”(NIV).
When the Apostle Paul wrote his first letter to the Thessalonians, he praised them for their reputation that had spread throughout the whole world. He commended them for their “work produced by faith”, their “labor prompted by love, and their “endurance inspired by hope.” Paul continued to build them up by saying they were a model to all believers and their faith in God has become know everywhere.
In his book UnChristian, David Kinnaman, who works for the Barna Group—a Christian research group, shared that the top three words that non-believers use to describe Christians were “judgmental,” “hypocritical,” and “anti-homosexual.”
Isn’t that sad? If these are the words that non-believers are using to describe followers of Jesus Christ, how in the world are they ever going to be open to the life-changing truth of the Gospel?
Your Reputation Matters
What are you known for? What is your reputation at the office, in your neighborhood, amongst your family, or on the golf course? Do people smell a “spiritual B.O.” in you or are they able to smell the sweet aroma of Jesus Christ that is marked by love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control?
May we represent Christ well to the non-believing community around us, so that people will be drawn to our Savior!