Encouragement of Timothy’s Visit
1Therefore, when we could no longer endure our separation [from you], we thought it best to be left behind, alone at Athens, 2 and so we sent Timothy, our brother and God’s servant in [spreading] the good news of Christ, to strengthen and encourage you [exhorting, comforting, and establishing you] in regard to your faith, 3 so that no one would be unsettled by these difficulties [to which I have referred]. For you know that we have been destined for this [as something unavoidable in our position]. 4 For even when we were with you, we warned you plainly in advance that we were going to experience persecution; and so, as you know, it has come to pass. 5 For this reason, when I could no longer endure the suspense, I sent someone to find out about your faith [how you were holding up under pressure], for fear that somehow the tempter had tempted you and our work [among you] would prove to be ineffective.
6 But now that Timothy has come back to us from [his visit with] you, and has brought us good news of your [steadfast] faith and [the warmth of your] love, and [reported] that you always think kindly of us and treasure your memories of us, longing to see us just as we long to see you, 7 for this reason, brothers and sisters, during all our distress and suffering we have been comforted and greatly encouraged about you because of your faith [your unwavering trust in God—placing yourselves completely in His loving hands]; 8 because now we really live [in spite of everything], if you stand firm in the Lord. 9 For what [adequate] thanks can we offer to God for you in return for all the joy and delight we have before our God on your account? 10 We continue to pray night and day most earnestly that we may see you face to face, and may complete whatever may be imperfect and lacking in your faith.
11 Now may our God and Father Himself, and Jesus our Lord guide our steps to you [by removing the obstacles that stand in our way]. 12 And may the Lord cause you to increase and excel and overflow in love for one another, and for all people, just as we also do for you; 13 so that He may strengthen and establish your hearts without blame in holiness in the sight of our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all His [a]saints (God’s people).