BIBLE READING: I Thessalonians 1
9 For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God;
10 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.
“YE TURNED TO GOD FROM IDOLS”
This is the very thing that marks the difference between a casual Christian and a committed Christian. Obviously, there are more casual Christians than there are committed Christians. It is not that they do not love God, it is just that there are some other things in their lives that they tend to love just as much, or even more. So, what marks a committed Christian?
“YE TURNED TO GOD”
There must come a point in any person’s life, if they’re going to be saved, they must turn “to God”. We are born heading the opposite direction. Everything about our flesh is leaning away from God. There must be repentance. There must be a stopping the direction we’re going, and a decision to turn toward God.
“YE TURNED….FROM IDOLS”
Now we begin to narrow things down. There are many who have turned to God but have never really turned “from idols”. Idols can appear in our life so quickly and so pervasively. It is easy for many things to take precedent and priority in our lives. We should “seek first the kingdom of God”, but so often we seek other things first. That is what made this church in Thessalonica different. Just because there was a time in your life when you turned to God, there must be the daily and even hourly decision to turn from idols.
“YE TURNED……TO SERVE”
Paul commended this church because they turned “to God”, they turned “from idols”, but they went the next step and they committed “to serve the living and true God”. Here is the lesson. The more we turn from idols, the easier it will be to serve the Lord. It is difficult to consistently serve the Lord, when our life is full of idols. They take our time, they take our effort, and they take our energy. That is what idols do. The more we seek idols, the less we serve the Lord. Maybe it is time to “turn” around today. To “turn from”, and to “turn to”.