1 Thessalonians, 2
1. You know yourselves, my brothers, that our visit to you has not been pointless.
2. Although, as you know, we had received rough treatment and insults at Philippi, God gave us the courage to speak his gospel to you fearlessly, in spite of great opposition.
3. Our encouragement to you does not come from any delusion or impure motives or trickery.
4. No, God has approved us to be entrusted with the gospel, and this is how we preach, seeking to please not human beings but God who tests our hearts.
5. Indeed, we have never acted with the thought of flattering anyone, as you know, nor as an excuse for greed, God is our witness;
6. nor have we ever looked for honour from human beings, either from you or anybody else,
7. when we could have imposed ourselves on you with full weight, as apostles of Christ. Instead, we lived unassumingly among you. Like a mother feeding and looking after her children,
8. we felt so devoted to you, that we would have been happy to share with you not only the gospel of God, but also our own lives, so dear had you become.
9. You remember, brothers, with what unsparing energy we used to work, slaving night and day so as not to be a burden on any one of you while we were proclaiming the gospel of God to you.
10. You are witnesses, and so is God, that our treatment of you, since you believed, has been impeccably fair and upright.
11. As you know, we treated every one of you as a father treats his children,
12. urging you, encouraging you and appealing to you to live a life worthy of God, who calls you into his kingdom and his glory.
13. Another reason why we continually thank God for you is that as soon as you heard the word that we brought you as God's message, you welcomed it for what it really is, not the word of any human being, but God's word, a power that is working among you believers.
14. For you, my brothers, have modelled yourselves on the churches of God in Christ Jesus which are in Judaea, in that you have suffered the same treatment from your own countrymen as they have had from the Jews,
15. who put the Lord Jesus to death, and the prophets too, and persecuted us also. Their conduct does not please God, and makes them the enemies of the whole human race,
16. because they are hindering us from preaching to gentiles to save them. Thus all the time they are reaching the full extent of their iniquity, but retribution has finally overtaken them.
17. Although we had been deprived of you for only a short time in body but never in affection, brothers, we had an especially strong desire and longing to see you face to face again,
18. and we tried hard to come and visit you; I, Paul, tried more than once, but Satan prevented us.
19. What do you think is our hope and our joy, and what our crown of honour in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes?
20. You are, for you are our pride and joy.