Although Paul and Silas were only in Thessalonica for a short time, the gospel message was received by many people (Acts 17:1-12). The message was God's and not Paul's, although he had the responsibility of presenting God's Word (Gk Logos) which is much more than mere words. It is the essence of the gospel, God's love, Christ's sacrifice and the Holy Spirit's power, expressed in words the people could understand.
Paul thanked God that when the people heard the gospel they knew that God was speaking to them. They welcomed it as God's personal message to them. The Holy Spirit was at work applying what the apostle said in such a way that they were convicted of sin and were able to relate to Jesus (John 16:7-15). Human words delivered the message but the converts knew that God was communicating directly with them.
The Word of God is like seed: it has life in itself. When sown into the human heart, it will germinate and get to work in the person. Truth cannot be erased, it has a perpetual quality: truth about God, about ourselves and about what He wants us to do ... it will not go away once it has been planted. Through God's Word, unbelievers are born again (1 Peter 1:23). When people believe in Jesus, they receive the Holy Spirit to teach them how God's Word applies to them. As they obey what God says, they develop a nature like Jesus’, and become productive workers in His 'family business' (Luke 8:15).
The Bible is God's Word. The work of the apostles was not only to establish the first churches but also to instruct us. They were God's human agents in writing the New Testament, in the same way that Isaiah and Daniel contributed to the Old Testament (2 Peter 1:20-21). The Holy Spirit instructed them. What they wrote is equally God's Word. In the Bible we have all we need to become like Jesus,and to serve the Father in the power of the Spirit. Read it, meditate on it, study it, and then do what the Lord says to you through it. And it is not just for you. Share it! Through it your friends and family will find the way to be saved, backsliders will be rescued, wounded believers will find healing and serving believers will find strength to work for the Lord and endure hardship (2 Timothy 3:16).
© Dr Paul Adams