1 Thessalonians 4:9-18
9 Now concerning brotherly love you have no need for anyone to write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love one another, 10 for that indeed is what you are doing to all the brothers throughout Macedonia. But we urge you, brothers, to do this more and more, 11 and to aspire to live quietly, and to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, as we instructed you, 12 so that you may walk properly before outsiders and be dependent on no one.
13 But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. 14 For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep. 15 For this we declare to you by a word from the Lord, that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.
Reflection & Application
1 Thessalonians 4:9-10
- What can I learn about the nature of love from the fact that Apostle Paul gives this exhortation while acknowledging that they already do love their brothers?
- Are there situations in which I try to limit the call to love more and more?
1 Thessalonians 4:11-12
“The apostle had two particular reasons for this threefold appeal to the Thessalonians to be quiet, non-interfering and hard-working. The first was that their daily life might win the respect of outsiders (12a), and the second that they might not be dependent on anybody (12b; cf. 2:9), but rather enjoy ‘an honourable independence’ (JBP). In this way Paul brings together the two communities to which all Christians belong – the world and the church, ‘outsiders’ and the Christian brotherhood.” 
- What is the relationship between leading a disciplined and diligent life and being able to love those around me?
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
- Why are we able to have hope even in the face of death?
- In light of the fact that death is not the final word, and that “we will always be with the Lord,” how should this affect the way I approach fears and risks in life? How does this affect my view of the call to love more and more?
 Stott, John R.W. (ed.), The Message of 1 & 2 Thessalonians, (Leicester, England: Inter-Varsity Press, 1991), p. 90.