1 Thessalonians 4:11

Read Introduction to 1 Thessalonians


“…that you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you…“
Certain members of the church at Thessalonica became fanatics, busybodies and loafers. Paul has a fourfold prescription for these people:
1. Live a calm and orderly life
2. Mind their own business
3. Engage in manual labor
4. Have a mannerly conduct
that you also aspire to lead a quiet life,
First, Paul urges the Thessalonians to aspire to a quiet life. “Aspire” comes from one Greek word with two words joined: to be fond of and honour. “Aspire” has the sense of being strongly ambitious about something or applying oneself to something. The Thessalonians were to make every effort to pursue a tranquil life. Apparently, they were bogged down by unscriptural argument and unwarranted criticism. They could channel all this misspent energy into something more advantageous.
Christians should aspire to lead a quiet life. Paul says, “Do everything in your power to lead a quiet life.” Christians should have settled souls, not noisy souls. Noisy souls come from having too much time on our hands.
Christians usefully employed have a tendency toward more settled souls.
Christians should not get their liver in a quiver. Turmoil is not of Christ. Tone it down. Why should Christians get exasperated with one another? It does not take much to upset some of us. We fly off the handle very quickly, even at minor things. We major on the minors and minor on the majors.
We get worked up over trivial things. After it is over and we have had time to think about the situation, we say, “How foolish of me to get into a sweat over that! How immature of me to do that!” God has remedies for fretful living.
“Do not fret because of evildoers, Nor be envious of the workers of iniquity” (Psalms 37:1).
A quiet soul does not enter into rivalry with fellow Christians. Christians are not to draw attention to themselves by ungodly promotion of self. Some people love to let everyone know how important they are among the Christian herd. They establish a very clear pecking order, because they must be on top of the herd. All this comes from having too much time on their hands.

11 Responses to “1 Thessalonians 4:11”

  • Was looking for an answer about a boss that is lazy and does not complete the work and then expects everyone else to pick up the pieces. My boss is a devout christian and does not believe in working on Sundays but gets upset with me when i work on a Sunday to complete the work that was not done in the first place. I found great joy in reading this quoted piece in your article as i was also told by my boss that she cannot switch off and is always busy thinking. “Christians should have settled souls, not noisy souls. Noisy souls come from having too much time on our hands.” She is very busy with church activities but neglects her business which employs 12 people and expects us to pick up the pieces.

    Thank you for your article.


  • Thanks for your comment Christa.

  • So God is asking us to get a job and stay in our place? Isn’t that contrary to everything else which tells us to spread the joy and love of Jesus? Obviously it’s not contrary because the bible is perfect, but please can you explain how, because I don’t know.

  • Tyler, this passage says nothing about missions or evangelism. The problem was that the Thessalonians did not get employment because they thought the rapture was going to happen in very short order. Therefore, they were sitting around criticizing one another. Paul chastises them for this thinking. The “quiet life” has to do with a life that free from strife with others.

  • Thank you, Grant. Paul is my hero. He worked night and day with his own hand so he would not be burden on anyone. He encouraged robbers to steal no more but work with their own hands. These are three times “with your own hands” shows up in Paul’s letters. My life experience, even though I have been admitted to practice law since 1968, has been most joyous when I am doing something with my hands: planting a garden, tuning up a car, rebuilding a motorcycle, framing up a shed. These things leave our minds open to “think on things above.” I firmly believe that the preferred lifestyle is agrarian. Nevertheless, Lord Jesus come!!!!

  • Gray, Is law the paralysis of analysis? Just kidding. :)

  • This was the verse of the day for my future school for graduate study. Lately coworkers have not felt that I need to stay in my lane. I just want todi whatia best formy students and our school. If I feel like I should bring something to light, am I wrong to bring it up even if it has nothing to di with my department?

  • Glory, there is not enough information in your comment for me to make an evaluation. However, generally speaking, if the institution is Christian and there is a serious violation of Christian standards, then 1) go to the individual/s to confront them personally, 2) take two or three friends and together address the issue, 3) if this does not resolve the situation, take it to the leaders/board (Mt 18). This blog would not be the place to get too specific.

  • When you were speaking about having a "quiet soul" it reminded me of 1 peter 3:3-4 " Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. 4 Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight"
    I'm praying about finding a wife, and thats an important thing, that her soul is gentle and quiet. It trusts in God's providence, he's in control, and She doesnt have a worried, fretful, anxious spirit about life. Thats something God's shown me :)

  • after all forms noise a quiet life is all that I’ve discovered I need ,God bless this verse that it works in my life

  • I am very grateful for this blod post. I read commentary earlier on this passage of Scripture, and the commentator brought up the "religion of excitement and entertainment", and how we can make ourselves a god, worship the priests of celebrities and read their scripture in tabloids and gossip magazines and how the places of worship were amusements parks, theatres and concert halls, etc. I was under the impression that Chrsitians were not to enjoy these means of pleasure but I believe we are instructed not to make gods out of ourselves and glamorous people by indulging ourselves and souls in these pleasures. What is your opinion regarding these matter as it pertains to this Scripture? Thank you somuch and God bless you.

Leave a Reply