Established in the Lord

from Lynda Lindsey

Finally, brothers, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored, as happened among you, and that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men. For not all have faith. But the Lord is faithful. He will establish you and guard you against the evil one. II Thessalonians 3:1-3

And we have confidence in the Lord about you, that you are doing and will do the things that we command. May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ. II Thessalonians 3:4-5

The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps. Proverbs 16:9

Paul’s heart resonates with one passion, to proclaim God’s gospel. Paul asks his brothers and sisters in Christ to pray for the furtherance of the gospel, that the word of the Lord, when preached, may speed ahead unhindered, as if it is blown aloft and borne along by God’s Holy Spirit, to be received and revered. Paul prays for deliverance from wicked, evil men, men without faith who desire to sabotage God’s work. The Lord, always faithful, establishes our steps and directs our hearts, guarding and protecting us from the evils of Satan.

The Lord, faithful, reliable and trustworthy, promises to establish and comfort us concerning our faith, and He will do it. Just as garden plants securely fastened to a stake can withstand heavy winds and storms, God’s secure hold on us keeps us from falling. Trials and troubles, persecution, false teaching, Satan’s wiles, nothing can topple us, for the Lord establishes and secures our hearts holy and blameless until He comes again. He establishes our steps in every good work and word as we work and wait for His return. He guards and keeps us from evil; our roots grow deep; we endure. 

The work of salvation belongs to the Lord; our part is to cooperate as the Holy Spirit leads and guides. Prompt obedience honors the Lord, enables us to be deeply rooted in faith and develops our endurance. Paul, confident his hearers will obey, points to God’s love and Christ’s steadfastness as worthy examples. We love because God first loved us; His love never ceases, His steadfastness never fails, and His mercies are new every morning. Be joyful in hope, patient in troubles, bear with one another in love, work quietly, don’t grow weary in well doing. Stand firm, deeply established in the Lord.