I don’t need to write to you about the Christian love that should be shown among God’s people. For God himself has taught you to love one another. Indeed, your love is already strong toward all the Christians in all of Macedonia. Even so, dear brothers and sisters, we beg you to love them more and more. This should be your ambition: to live a quiet life, minding your own business and working with your hands, just as we commanded you before. As a result, people who are not Christians will respect the way you live, and you will not need to depend on others to meet your financial needs.

And now, dear brothers and sisters, we give you this command with the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ: Stay away from any Christian who lives in idleness and doesn’t follow the tradition of hard work we gave you. For you know that you ought to follow our example. We were never lazy when we were with you. We never accepted food from anyone without paying for it. We worked hard day and night so that we would not be a burden to any of you. It wasn’t that we didn’t have the right to ask you to feed us, but we wanted to give you an example to follow. Even while we were with you, we gave you this rule: “Whoever does not work should not eat.”

Yet we hear that some of you are living idle lives, refusing to work and wasting time meddling in other people’s business. In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, we appeal to such people–no, we command them: Settle down and get to work. Earn your own living. And I say to the rest of you, dear brothers and sisters, never get tired of doing good.

Take note of those who refuse to obey what we say in this letter. Stay away from them so they will be ashamed. Don’t think of them as enemies, but speak to them as you would to a Christian who needs to be warned.

In the first paragraph (1 Thessalonians 4:9-12) Paul is writing to the Christians in Thessalonica about Love and Hard work, or the lack of being lazy. Paul tells them to love even more, even though they already have a strong love of their fellow Christians. Their ambition should be to live a quite life, minding their own business, and working with their hands (working hard- Greek culture looked down on manual labor). So, Paul is telling me, I need to live a quite life? Mind my own business? And work hard? Well, that’s a little crazy sounding. I need to go to work on time, work hard, do the projects quickly, do the maintenance, even though I hate doing it, and not complain? But then he continues? As a result of those things, those who do not follow the Lord (I say follow, because even though some may believe, they don’t follow) will give you their respect, and you will not need to depend (some Christians in Thessalonica had turned to handouts) on them or others for your financial needs. This is how Paul instructs them to love more, so we as spiritual descendents of the Thessalonians should also follow what Paul asked them to do. Love more, work harder, and be respected.

Paragraph two, 2 Thessalonians 3:6-15. Paul is writing back to the Thessalonians, he is concerned to hear that some of the Christians have become “idle”, and are messing around in other people’s business; he commands them to get to work, earn their own living. Then he goes even deeper, stay away from those brothers and sisters who refuse to work hard and stay out of others business, so they will feel ashamed of what they have done (or not done in this case). But do not treat them as an enemy, but talk to them, and speak to them as a warning.

Work hard, do not get into other people’s business, this is how to show MORE love. But when another Christian is not doing their part in work, or is messing around in someone else’s life, stay away from them, do not treat them as an enemy, but let them know they do not deserve respect. With that, pray they will know why they are not receiving your praises, do not disrespect them, do not expect them to just understand. Talk to them directly and not others, most likely there is more to the story then meets the eye. I think a lot of people just look down on those who do not work hard, but they never speak to them, Paul commands us to speak to them, as a warning, but I believe this is out of love not hate for the person. Let them know what comes of those who depend on others (handouts) to make their living. God does not honor this, it is not a sin, but is not honored.