The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The First Epistle of the Blessed Apostle Paul to the Thessalonians
Yes, brethren, you yourselves can testify that when we arrived among you, it proved to be no fruitless visit.
We had been ill treated and insulted, as you know, at Philippi, but our God gave us courage to preach the divine gospel to you with great earnestness.✻
Our appeal to you was not based on any false or degraded notions, was not backed by cajolery.
We have passed God’s scrutiny, and he has seen fit to entrust us with the work of preaching; when we speak, it is with this in view; we would earn God’s good opinion, not man’s, since it is God who scrutinizes our hearts.
We never used the language of flattery, you will bear us out in that; nor was it, God knows, an excuse for enriching ourselves;
we have never asked for human praise, yours or another’s,
although, as apostles of Christ, we might have made heavy demands on you. No, you found us innocent as babes in your company; no nursing mother ever cherished her children more;✻
in our great longing for you, we desired nothing better than to offer you our own lives, as well as God’s gospel, so greatly had we learned to love you.
Brethren, you can remember how we toiled and laboured, all the time we were preaching God’s gospel to you, working day and night so as not to burden you with expense.
Both you and God can witness how upright and honest and faultless was our conduct towards you believers;
it is within your knowledge that we treated every one of you as a father treats his children, encouraging you, comforting you,
imploring you to lead a life worthy of the God who now invites you to the glory of his kingdom.
This is why we give thanks to God unceasingly that, when we delivered the divine message to you, you recognized it for what it is, God’s message, not man’s; it is God, after all, who manifests his power in you that have learned to believe.
You took for your model, brethren, the churches of God which are assembled in Judaea in the name of Christ Jesus. You were treated by your own fellow countrymen as those churches were treated by the Jews,
the men who killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets, and persecuted us; the men who displease God and shew themselves the enemies of mankind,
when they try to hinder us from preaching salvation to the Gentiles. They must always be filling up the measure of their sins, and now it is God’s final vengeance that has fallen upon them.
Finding ourselves separated from you, brethren, even for a little while, though only in person, not in spirit, we conceived an overwhelming desire to visit you in person, such was our longing for you;
and we planned a journey to you, I myself, Paul, more than once; but Satan has put obstacles in our way.
What hope or delight have we, what prize to boast of before our Lord Jesus Christ when he comes, if not you?
All our pride, all our delight is in you.
The Holy Bible