Growing in the likeness of Christ. Fruit of the Spirit. Lesson 8 – Gentleness 1 Thessalonians 2:1-121 For yourselves, brethren, know our entrance in unto you, that it was not in vain: 2But even after that we had suffered before, and were shamefully entreated, as yeknow, at Philippi, we were bold in our God to speak unto you the gospel of Godwith much contention. 3 For our exhortation was not of deceit, nor of uncleanness,nor in guile: 4 But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel,even so we speak; not as pleasing men, but God, which trieth our hearts. 5 Forneither at any time used we flattering words, as ye know, nor a cloke ofcovetousness; God is witness: 6 Nor of men sought we glory, neither of you, noryet of others, when we might have been burdensome, as the apostles of Christ.7 But we were gentle among you, even as a nurse cherisheth her children: 8 Sobeing affectionately desirous of you, we were willing to have imparted unto you,not the gospel of God only, but also our own souls, because ye were dear unto us. 9For ye remember, brethren, our labour and travail: for labouring night and day,because we would not be chargeable unto any of you, we preached unto you thegospel of God. 10 Ye are witnesses, and God also, how holily and justly andunblameably we behaved ourselves among you that believe: 11 As ye know how weexhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father doth hischildren, 12 That ye would walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto hiskingdom and glory. *****The word gentleness conjures up wrong images for some people. It may denote a syrupy, self-denying quality. Or a quality which women have but “real men” do not! On the other hand,gentleness may be something we want very much. But we feel discouraged because the wholemake-up of our personality is so far from being gentle. The Apostle Paul’s treatment of theThessalonians provides a model of the gentleness God desires in us. ***** Discussion Questions1. Think of those who have helped you most to grow in Christ. What are some qualities youappreciate in them?2. According to Paul in 1 Thessalonians 2:1-12, what are some wrong ways to share Christ withothers (vv. 3-6)?3. Give an example of how we might make an appeal to a non-Christian using tricks or flattery.
4. How might a Pastor/ Christian worker use his job as a mask of greed?5. In contrast, what were Paul’s motives for sharing Christ with the Thessalonians?6. Why are pure motives important?7. How was Paul like a mother to the Thessalonians (vv. 7-9)?8. In what ways can we share “not only the Gospel of God but our lives as well” with thosearound us? What might this mean in terms of time, energy, money and vulnerability?9. How was Paul also like a father to the Thessalonians (vv. 10-12)?10. Why is it important for gentleness (v. 7) to be tempered with the qualities and goalmentioned in v. 12?11. In what practical ways can we encourage, comfort and urge people to live lives worthy ofGod?12. Think of those in whose lives you might exercise the kind of ministry demonstrated by Paul.How could gentleness enhance these relationships? As you relate to others with your own uniquepersonality and style, how can you express gentleness?13. Ask God to help you be an example of gentleness and sacrificial love to these people.