1 Thessalonians 4:18 “Therefore encourage each other with these words.”
1 Thessalonians 5:11 “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”
Paul wanted the Thessalonian believers to be encouraged and built up from the gospel. It is the gospel that saves and sanctifies believers. Therefore, it is helpful to understand the gospel. One of the ways at exploring the gospel is through the 7 last sayings of Jesus.
1) Luke 23:34 “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”
Apply: The gospel provides forgiveness.
2) Luke 23:43 “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”
Apply: The gospel provides eternal salvation.
3) John 19:25-27 “Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whome he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, ‘Woman, behold, your son! And to the disciple, Behold, here is your mother.’”
Apply: The gospel provides family community.
4) John 19:28 “Later, knowing that all was now completed, and so that the Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, ‘I am thirsty’.”
Apply: The gospel provides human identification from God.
5) Matthew 27:46 “About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, ‘Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani – which means, ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
Apply: The gospel provides substitutionary atonement (penalty paid).2 Corinthians 5:21 “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”
Galatians 3:13 “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: ‘Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.”
6) John 19:30 “When he had received the drink, Jesus said, ‘It is finished’.”
Apply: The gospel provides substitutionary atonement (righteousness imputed).
7) Luke 23:44-46 “It was not about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour, for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Jesus called out with a loud voice, ‘Father, into your hands I commit my spirit’. When he had said this, he breathed his last.”
Apply: The gospel provides victorious life giving power over death.
Philippians 3:10-11 “I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection of the dead.”