Be Ready for Jesus to Return
An EasyEnglish Version with Notes (1200 word vocabulary) on Paulís First Letter to the Thessalonians
The translated text has been through Advanced Checking.
Words in boxes are comments on the text.
The word list at the end explains words with a star * by them.
v1 This letter is from Paul, Silas and Timothy to the Christians at Thessalonica. You are united to God the Father and to the *Lord Jesus Christ. We pray that God will continue to be very kind to you. We pray also that he will cause you to be without trouble inside yourselves.
v2 We thank God for all of you at all times. Every time that we pray, we always pray for you. v3 We speak about you to God, who is our Father. We remember the good things that you do. You do those things because you believe Christ. You work very much because you love Christ and other people. We remember also how you continue to hope strongly because of our *Lord Jesus Christ.
v4 You are like brothers and sisters to us, and God loves you. We know that God has chosen you to be his own. v5 We know that, because our good news came to you not only with words. When we told it to you, the power of Godís Spirit was there too. Also, we felt completely brave and strong when we spoke. You know how we lived among you. You know what kind of people we were. We were like good guides for you. v6 And you learned to live as we lived. So you learned also to live like the *Lord. People caused you a lot of trouble and pain because you believed the message about Christ. But you did believe it, and Godís Spirit caused you to be very happy. v7 And so you became like a guide to all the *believers in Macedonia and in Achaia.
v8 Because of you, people in many places have listened to the message about the *Lord. It was not only the people in Macedonia and in Achaia who listened to these things. But people everywhere know how you believe God. So, we do not need to say anything. v9 Those people themselves speak about how you believed our message. They tell how you turned to God. They tell us how you stopped *worshipping false gods. They themselves say that you are now Godís servants. God is alive, and only he is really God. v10 Also, you are waiting for Godís Son to come from *heaven. God caused his Son, Jesus, to become alive again after he had died. And Jesus saves us so that God will not be angry with us at that future time.
v1 Our friends, you yourselves know that our visit to you had good results. v2 Before we came to you, the people at Philippi had done bad things to hurt us. And they had spoken very bad words to us. You know that. But our God caused us to be brave so that we could tell you his good news. Many people tried to stop us, but we did tell you Godís message.
v3 We were telling you the good news so that you could believe God. We told you only true things. We had no wrong purpose. We did not want you to believe things that are not true. v4 Instead, we say what God wants us to say. He has chosen us to tell his good news. We do not speak so that we can make people happy. But we do want to make God happy. And God discovers what our purposes really are, deep inside ourselves. v5 We never tried to say nice things about you so that you would like us. You know that. We never demanded money or other things from you. We never had a secret purpose like that. God knows this. v6 We did not want people to say great things about us. We did not want you to do that. And we did not want anyone else to do that. We are Christís special workers and teachers. So, we could have used our authority over you. We could have caused you to do things for us. We could have caused you to supply things for us.
v7 But instead, we were kind when we were with you. We were kind like a mother who *looks after her little children. v8 We were very fond of you. So, we wanted very much to tell you the good news from God. Also, we wanted to give ourselves completely to help you. We wanted to do these things because we loved you very much. v9 Our friends, you should certainly remember how we worked so very much. We worked during the day and at night. We worked so that we did not need to ask any of you for anything. So then, we did not cost you anything while we taught you Godís good news.
v10 When we were with you *believers, we did nothing wrong. We did only what is completely good and right. You know that, and God knows it too. v11-12 You know that we helped each of you. We were like a father who helps his own children. We taught you and we helped you to be brave and strong as *believers. And we told you very strongly what you must do. You must do what makes God happy. God has chosen you to belong to his own people, the people that he rules over. He wants you to be with him always, in the beautiful place where he lives.
v13 There is also another reason why we continue to thank God always. When we told Godís message to you, you believed it as words from God. You knew that it was not only a human message. You believed it as Godís message, which it certainly is. And Godís words do powerful things in you who believe him.
v14 And now, my friends, you have become like the Christians who belong to Godís people in Judea. People in your own country have caused trouble and pain for you. And that is what happened in Judea too to the *believers in Christ Jesus there. People in their own country caused trouble and pain for them.
v15 The people who caused that trouble even killed the *Lord Jesus and the *prophets. And they caused trouble for us so that they caused us to leave their country. God is not happy with those people. He is very angry with them. They are very much against people everywhere v16 because they do not want us to speak to people from other *nations. They do not want God to save anyone from another *nation. Those people always continue until they have done their last *sin. But in the end, God has *punished them.
v17 But you are like brothers and sisters to us. We have had to go away from you for a short time. But it was only our bodies that left you. We did not stop thinking about you. We wanted very, very much to see your faces. And we tried very much to visit you again. v18 We wanted to return to you. Certainly, I, Paul, tried again and again to return, but *Satan made it impossible. v19 We wanted so much to visit you because you cause us to hope so strongly! You make us sure that God will continue to work in you. You cause us to be very happy! To us, you are like a *crown that a winner receives. The *crown shows that the winner has done well. You show that our work among you had good results. So, you are our *crown that makes us very happy. We will be very happy when we stand in front of our *Lord Jesus. That will be when he comes again. v20 Yes, it is because of you that we are so happy. We are happy about the results of our work.
v1 When we could not wait any longer to know news about you, we decided to stay in Athens city alone. We thought that it was the best thing to do. v2 And we sent Timothy to visit you. He is like our brother. He works with us for God, to tell people the good news about Christ. We sent Timothy so that he could help you to believe Christ strongly and to be brave. v3 So then none of you will stop believing because of the troubles and pain that people cause you. You yourselves know that there must be troubles and pain for us. That is part of Godís purpose for us.
v4 Even when we were with you, we told you to be ready for future trouble. We told you that people would certainly cause you a lot of trouble and pain. And that did happen. You know that. v5 That is why I had to send Timothy. I could not wait any longer, so I sent him to you. I wanted to know whether you were continuing to believe Christ. I was afraid that *Satan had caused you to turn away from Christ. So all our work among you would have no results.
v6 But now Timothy has come back to us from you. And he has told us good news about you. He has told us how you are continuing to believe Christ. You are continuing, also, to love God and each other. And you are always happy when you think about us. You want very much to meet us again, as we want to meet you. Timothy has told us these things. v7 So, we have become stronger and braver because of you, who are like brothers and sisters to us. People have caused us very much trouble and pain. But we were very happy to know that you were continuing to believe Christ.
v8 Now, because of you, we are like people who have become alive again. You are united to the *Lord. And if you continue to believe him strongly, that makes us very happy. v9 Now we can thank God very much for you! We are very, very happy when we talk to God about you. And so we thank him for that. v10 We continue to ask God that we might visit you. We pray like that every day and every night. We want very, very much to visit you. We want to teach things to you that you still need to know. So then you can really believe Christ as you should believe him.
v11 We pray this to God himself, who is our Father, and to our *Lord Jesus. We pray that they will prepare the way for us to visit you. v12 We pray also that the *Lord will cause you to love each other more and more. We love you. And we want you to go on loving all people more and more in the same way. v13 So, the *Lord will cause you to become strong inside yourselves. You will be completely good and clean for God, who is our Father. So then nobody can ever say that you have done anything wrong. And you will stand in front of God when our *Lord Jesus comes. Jesus will return to this earth, with all those who are his own.
v1 Now, friends, we want to say this to you. We taught you how to live so that you make God happy. And certainly, you are living like that. Now we ask you very strongly to continue to live like that more and more. On behalf of the *Lord Jesus, we ask you to do this. v2 You know what we told you. We told you what you must do. The *Lord Jesus gave us authority to tell you those things.
v3 What God wants is this: He wants you to be completely good, and separate from everything that is bad. So you must not have wrong sex. You must not have sex with anyone who is not your own wife or husband. v4 Each of you must learn how to rule his own body. So then you will always do what is right and proper. v5 You should not be like the people who do not know God. They are always wanting very much to have sex. They cannot stop themselves, because they want it so much. But you should not be like those people. v6 No man among you should ever have sex with a woman who is not his own wife. He would be taking something that is another manís. So, he would be doing a wrong thing to that man, who is like his brother. The *Lord will *punish everyone who does things like that. We have told you this very seriously before. v7 God did not choose us to do bad and dirty things. He chose us to be completely separate from everything that is bad. v8 So anyone who does not obey this rule is not refusing to obey a human person. Instead, he is refusing to do what God says. And God gives you his Spirit, who is completely good.
v9 But I do not need to write to you about how you should love other *believers. God himself has taught you to love each other. v10 Certainly, you do love all the *believers in all Macedonia. But we ask you strongly, friends, to love each other more and more. v11 Try very much not to cause trouble for anyone. Be busy only with your own things, not with other peopleís things. And work with your hands. We told you before that you must do these things. v12 Then, if you do these things, other people will think good things about you. People who do not believe Christ will think good things about you. They will know that you are honest and good. Also, if you do these things, you will not need anyone else to supply anything for you.
v13 Friends, we want you to understand properly about the people who have died. So you will not be sad about them, as other people are sad about their dead friends. Those other people are sad because they have nothing to hope for, after death. v14 But we believe that Jesus died. We believe that he became alive again after death. So, we also believe this about the people who have died united to Christ. We believe that God will bring those people back with Jesus.
v15 We are now telling you something that the *Lord has said. We tell you this about the day when the *Lord will come. Those of us who are still alive on that day will not go to meet the *Lord first. We will certainly not go before those people who have already died. v16 On that day, God will shout with authority. Also, people will hear the voice of an important *angel. They will hear the sound of Godís *trumpet. And the *Lord himself will come down from *heaven. Then those people who have died united to Christ will become alive again. And they will rise first. v17 After that, those of us who are still alive at that time will go up. God will take us up to be together with them in the clouds. He will take us to meet the *Lord in the air. And so we will be with the *Lord always. v18 So tell these things to each other. So you will not need to continue being sad.
v1 Friends, we do not need to write to you about the dates and times when these things will happen. v2 You know very well about how the day of the *Lordís return will happen. That day will surprise people very much, as when someone comes to rob people at night. v3 At that time, people will say, ĎWe are safe and there is no trouble for us.í But then, when they are not ready for it, a lot of trouble and pain will happen to them. That trouble will happen to them like the pains of a woman who is giving birth to a baby. And it will be impossible for anyone to get free from that trouble.
v4 But you people, who are like brothers and sisters to us, you know about these things. So, you are not like people who live in the dark. And so the day when the *Lord returns should not surprise you. That day will not surprise you as when someone comes to rob people. v5 All of you are people who are the *Lordís people. So, you belong to the light and to the day. We are not people who belong to the night or to the dark. v6 So, we should not be like other people. We should not be like people who are sleeping. Instead, we should be like people who continue to be awake. We should think clearly about what is happening.
v7 It is at night that people sleep. It is at night that people are drunks. v8 But we belong to the day. So we should watch and we should think clearly. We must continue to believe God and to love him. So we will be like soldiers who put on *breastplates. Also, we must continue to hope strongly that God will save us. So we will be like soldiers who put on metal hats to keep their heads safe.
v9 God did not make us his people so that he could be angry with us. He has not chosen us so that he can *punish us. Instead, he has chosen us so that he can save us. He saves us because of what our *Lord Jesus Christ has done. v10 Jesus died for us so that we can live together with him. When he comes, we will live with him. Whether we are alive or dead at that time, there will not be any difference. We will all live with him. v11 So, tell these things to each other so that you do not feel sad or weak. Help each other to become stronger as *believers, as you are doing already.
v12 Now we ask you, our friends, to remember how valuable your leaders are. They work among you and they *look after you. They teach you how you should live as the *Lordís people. They tell you when you do wrong things. v13 Show them how valuable they are to you. And love them very much because of the work that they do. Do not quarrel with each other.
v14 Tell lazy people that they should work. Speak to those people who are afraid. Help them to be brave. Help those people who are weak. Be patient with everyone. Friends, we ask you strongly to do these things. v15 If a person has done something wrong to you, do not do something wrong back to them. Be careful that none of you does things like that. But always try to do good things to each other and to everyone else.
v16 Always be happy. v17 Pray at all times. v18 Whatever things may happen to you, continue to thank God. God wants you to do this, because you are united to Christ Jesus. v19 Do not stop letting Godís Spirit work in you as people might put out a fire. v20 Listen carefully when people speak messages on Godís behalf. Remember that those messages are important. v21 But think carefully about everything, to see if it really is from God. Then be careful to remember and to obey everything that is good. v22 Refuse to have anything to do with any kind of bad or wrong thing.
v23 God causes us to be without trouble inside ourselves. And I pray that God himself will make you completely good and clean. I pray that God will *look after your *spirits, your *souls and your bodies. I pray that he will *look after you completely. Then you will be completely good and clean when our *Lord Jesus Christ returns. v24 God has chosen you to be his people. And he always does what he has promised to do. So, he will do this for you.
v25 Our friends, please pray for us. v26 Say Ďhelloí to all the *believers. Kiss them as you would kiss your brother.
v27 I tell you very seriously, on behalf of the *Lord, that you should read this letter to all the *believers. v28 I pray that our *Lord Jesus Christ will continue to be very kind to you.
AD ~ AD 50 means 50 years after Jesus came, and so on.
angel ~ a *spirit. Good angels come from Godís home above the earth. They are Godís servants and they bring messages from God to people.
being ~ a person or an animal that is alive.
believer ~ a person who knows and accepts Christ.
breastplate ~ a big metal plate that a soldier wore over the front of his body.
crown ~ a special kind of hat that people gave to winners then.
heaven ~ the place beyond the earth where God and Jesus Christ live.
Jew ~ a person who is born from Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and their children.
look after ~ to give help to someone and to supply what someone or something needs.
Lord ~ master; another name for God or Jesus, which means that he is greater than everyone else.
nation ~ people who live together in the same country.
prophet ~ someone who speaks Godís messages.
punish ~ to hurt someone, or to cause trouble for them, because they have done bad things.
Satan ~ another name for the Devil. He is the bad *spirit who is the enemy of God. He is the ruler of bad *angels and of all that is bad. He is the enemy of Christians.
sin ~ what you do when you do not obey God.
soul ~ a part of a person that we cannot see. Our soul is in us while we are alive. It continues to live after we die.
spirit ~ a *being that is always alive, even without a body. There are good spirits, like Godís Spirit and his *angels. And there are bad spirits, like *Satan and his *angels. A personís spirit is the part of them that will always be alive. It will be alive even after their body is dead. God can speak to our spirit.
trumpet ~ a metal pipe with a wide end. People use their mouths to make music with it.
worship ~ to tell someone that they are very great and that you love them; to love and thank someone (God) more than anyone else.
A. Marshall ~ The Interlinear Greek-English New Testament ~ Zondervan
P. Ellingworth & E. A. Nida ~ A Translatorís Handbook on Paulís Letters to the Thessalonians ~ United Bible Societies, Stuttgart
L. Morris ~ The First and Second Epistles to the Thessalonians ~ New International Commentary on the New Testament ~ Eerdmans Publishing Company
F. F. Bruce ~ 1 & 2 Thessalonians ~ Word Biblical Commentary ~ Thomas Nelson
Various Bible versions
© 1997-2009, Wycliffe Associates (UK)
This publication is written in EasyEnglish Level A (1200 words).
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