What Do Genuine Conversations Look Like?

Pastor Phil Andrukaitis, November 13, 2023

Theme of 1st ThessaloniansLiving righteously while waiting patiently for Jesus to return

Sermon Title and Text: What Do Genuine Conversions Look Like(1st Thessalonians 1:6-10)            

Subject: Imitators of Christ

Complement: Society will be impacted for God when sinners imitate Christ.

Dominating Idea: Imitators of Christ change the world around them.

Overview & Review

I.          Spiritual leaders prove their concern for the church. (1:1a)

II.        Spiritual leaders provide care for the church. (1:1bc)

III.       Spiritual leaders pray for the church…. (1:2-3)

            A.         …by giving thanks to God for the lives of believers (1:2a)

            B.         …by naming the believers in their daily prayers (1:2b)

            C.        …by remembering the godly virtues of believers (1:3)

            D.        …by acknowledging the gospel’s impact upon believers (1:4-10)

                        1.         God transforms sinners into saints. (1:4-5)

Today’s Focus  2.         Transformed saints become imitators of Christ.                  (1:6-10)


What does a Christian look like?  If you believe yourself to be a follower of Christ, how closely does your walk with Christ resemble His walk?  For example…

Transitional Thoughts

Read James 2:14-26.  James reminds his readers that “faith by itself if it does not have works, is dead…For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead” (James 2:17, 26).

The dominating idea in 1st Thessalonians 1:6-10 is, Imitators of Christ change the world around them. 

Here are five manifestations as to how imitators of Christ change the world around them…

1.         …when they reproduce themselves after godly examples (1:6a)

            Consider the following verses:  1st Corinthians 4:16;  11:1;  Galatians 4:12;  Ephesians 5:1;  Philippians 3:17;  2nd Thessalonians 3:7.  Illustration:  Stream of ants

2.         …when they receive Scripture despite afflictions (1:6b)

            Just as the Spirit of God brings life to the sinner through regeneration, it is the same Spirit of God Who   sustains the believer who is undergoing persecution.  See John 14:16, 25-26.

3.         …when they resemble Christ to all the world (1:7)

            Being an “example” tupos means to be an exact representation of the original.  For example, in a print    shop, the printer will take the original document and type-set it so that all the copies look exactly like      the original.  How many copies of ourselves in Christ, have been made?

4.         …when they resound the Word of the Lord (1:8a)

            Wherever the Thessalonians went, they presented the gospel.  They reached out to the local community as well as the rest of the nation.  The gospel even crossed international borders.

5.         …when they radiate their faith in Christ (1:8b-10)

            Like the rays of the sun that shine across the land, the Thessalonians lived out their faith in the following            ways:

  • They turned to God and turned away from the dead idols that were across their city/land.
  • They served God by abandoning the dead gods to become willing slaves of Christ.
  • They waited for the return of Christ and the deliverance Christ will bring.

Conclusion                 Here are several general lessons/applications for our lives.

1.         Let us persistently testify of Christ everywhere we go.  “Give them Jesus.”

2.         Let us exercise faith in Christ that we may bless our neighborhood and local community.

3.         Let us serve God with our lives and resources while rejecting the culture’s ungodly influence.

4.         Let us pray to God to open our eyes and see the opportunities to share the gospel.

5.         Let us watch attentively for our Lord’s return and encourage one another to walk faithfully with Him.

Remember, imitators of Christ change the world around them.

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