1 Thessalonians 1:5-10
For our gospel came not to you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance…
The important question is — has the gospel really come to you; and has it come to you "in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance"? If so, you must have experienced —
I. A CONVICTION OF SIN. The man who is a real Christian must have been taught the plague of his old nature, and what an evil thing it is to sin against God.
II. AN ACQUAINTANCE WITH THE CHARACTER OF GOD'S HOLY LAW. This is a very necessary piece of knowledge. A mere professor, who has never known what real conviction of sin is, may be capable of amendment of life to a certain extent, but can have no just conception of the enormity of transgression against a holy and just God. When a man is made experimentally acquainted with the operations of the Holy Ghost, he feels that he has transgressed against God, and against the reasonable law of a mighty and righteous God, in every particular. "He who hath broken the law in one point, hath broken it in all."
III. A BELIEF IN THE LORD JESUS CHRIST. When a man is in this condition there is no difficulty at all in persuading him that all his hopes upon his own efforts and his own righteousness must be dispensed with, and that he must rest on the imputed righteousness of Jesus Christ, the perfect work of the Son of God, the salvation of the Divine Saviour. Every man who is saved is saved by himself. God comes to a man personally; the Holy Ghost comes to a man personally; the merits of Jesus come to a man personally. This is real religion.
(H. Allen, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake.
WEB: and that our Good News came to you not in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Spirit, and with much assurance. You know what kind of men we showed ourselves to be among you for your sake.