True Christian Conduct (I Thessalonians 4:11)
Study to Be Quiet (I Thessalonians 4:11) - Part 1
I Thessalonians 4:11, And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you;
Paul was addressing matters of sensitive concern. It seems what he was about to address was already a problem. There were obviously a few idle, gossiping people in this church who, instead of laboring for the Lord, went from place to place carrying on rumors, interfering in the business of others, and causing strife and divisions. Therefore, Paul got down to the basics of day-to-day life. Paul mentions three things concerning the private life of the Thessalonians. Each of these are important in a person’s private life and their demonstration of love.
Paul admonished the Thessalonians to lead a quiet life. The Bible speaks of this in the book of Proverbs (Proverbs 10:19; 13:3; 17:27-28; 21:23). One of the biggest problems to the church is that of internal dissension and discord. Nothing destroys the ministry of a church faster than criticism, gossiping, murmuring, selfishness, cliques, and ambitions to have one's own way. The word study carries the idea of being eager or earnest to do something; to labour, or to strive with all the energy a person has. It has the sense of being motivated and strongly determined about something.
The word quiet means to keep still or to hold your peace. This speaks of calmness, confidence, and contentment. This was an example of love in action. Paul’s objective was to encourage believers to live free from contention with others. Paul was concerned that the Thessalonians would make it their aim and to considered it an honor to lead a quiet life. Paul tells the church to make every effort to pursue a quiet and peaceful life. Most people are eager to speak their minds rather than allowing their minds to be in Christ. Too often people get so caught up into the lives of others that it distracts them from their own walk with God. Believers who try to be at peace with themselves and God will be a source of peace to the brethren.
Living for Jesus is not easy in a world that tempts us, tests us, and tries us on every corner. However, if we do not individually live for Jesus, then we will not have a good testimony as a church. When we walk with Jesus, we will seek to maintain a godly witness in this world. We cannot have a strong witness and a good testimony in this world unless each individual Christian strives to live for Jesus. We are to work persistently at maintaining a strong Christian witness. We are to set out to lead a quiet life. That should be our goal as the Lord leads us.
The Thessalonians loved those inside the church, but they also needed to love those outside the church. Many Christians only see their Christianity as a part of their lives, while failing to recognize it as the heart of their lives. Jesus should not be just a part of your life; Jesus is your life. By perceiving life in this way, they miss the whole point of their purpose in life. We should be careful and cautious, being silent and calm except when speaking is necessary, gracious and purposeful (Colossians 4:6), Jesus seriously warns against every "idle word" (Matthew 12:36), and Paul against "foolish talking" (Ephesians 5:4). Rather than speaking everything that comes to mind (Proverbs 29:11), we should ask God to help us not to utter all our mind (Psalm 141:3).
We are to live a quiet and peaceable life before each other. We are not to be critical and divisive toward one another. We are to walk in a quiet and meek spirit out in the world. We are not to be abusive and arrogant in witnessing and in dealing with the unconverted. The world is filled with those who are hurting and is in desperate need for the Gospel. Those who are hurting need to be heard. They cannot be heard if we are not living quiet and peaceable lives. We must lead quiet lives and listen to the Holy Spirit’s leading that we may minister to them.
Questions to Consider:
What areas in life do you struggle within being quiet?
Who has the Lord placed in your life that helps you to be quiet?
How should we respond if someone gossips to us?
Points to Ponder:
Restless Christians have little or no testimony before the unsaved.
If you live like this, first, it will impact your evangelism.
The world will notice and respect a church where these qualities exist.
PRAYER: Lord forgive me for the times I have not remained silent and have given into my flesh nature. Set a watch before my mouth and keep the door of my lips from any communication that is not inspired by the Holy Spirit. May my speech always be with grace and help me to minister grace unto those who are listening. In Jesus Name, AMEN!
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship.