[Since] you have purified your souls by [your] obedience to the truth [i.e., the Gospel message], which produces a genuine love for your brothers, [now] you should have this kind of fervent, heartfelt love for one another.
Come close to God and He will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinful people [i.e., this is an exhortation to repent of moral and spiritual corruption], and purify your hearts, you double-minded people.
I am giving you a new commandment: love one another. Also you should love one another in the same way that I have loved you.
But to the ones who have selfish ambition [Note: Some translate these words "are contentious"] and refuse to obey the truth, but [instead] obey what is wrong, [God will bring] wrath, fury,
Let [your] love be sincere. Hate whatever is evil. Cling to whatever is good.
But the goal of this instruction is [to] love [God and people] from a pure heart, a good conscience and a sincere faith.
Show [proper] respect for everyone. Love your [Christian] brothers [and sisters]. Have an awe-inspiring respect for God. Show honor to the king.
Now to summarize: All of you should think alike. Be sympathetically understanding [toward one another]. Be loving toward [your] brothers [and sisters]. Be tender-hearted and humble-minded.
You people are already 'clean' [i.e., have been pruned of undesirable traits] because of [obedience to] the teaching I have given you.
I command you to do these things so that you will [demonstrate your] love for one another. [Note: Or this may mean that His command was to love one another, as in verse 12].
And for their sakes I dedicate myself [to you] so that they themselves also may be truly dedicated [to you].
So, the message of God increased [in its influence] and the disciples multiplied in number greatly in Jerusalem, [so that even] a large number of [Jewish] priests became obedient to [the message of] the faith.
And He did not discriminate between us [i.e., Jews] and them [i.e., Gentiles], cleansing their hearts [also] by faith [in Jesus].
It was through Jesus, and for His name's sake, that we [i.e., I] received God's favor to become an apostle, in order to bring about obedience based on faith from among people of all nations.
Do you not know that you are the slaves of whoever you offer your obedience to? If you obey [the desire to] sin, it leads to [spiritual] death; or if you obey [God] it leads to righteousness.
for if you people live under [the control of] the flesh, you must die [spiritually]; but if you put to death [i.e., stop practicing] the [sinful] habits of the body by [the power of] the Holy Spirit, you will live [spiritually].
[We have ministered] with purity, knowledge, patience and kindness. [We have done this] by [the power of] the Holy Spirit; out of genuine love;
You foolish people [of the churches] of Galatia [Note: This was a province in present-day Turkey], who tricked you? Was not Jesus Christ graphically portrayed before you as being put to death on a cross?
For we are waiting for the hope [to be fulfilled] of being made right with God by [the power of] the Holy Spirit.
You [Christians] were running [the race of life] well; who hindered you [from making further progress] so that [now] you are no longer obeying the truth?
Eagerly try to maintain the unity produced by the Holy Spirit by being bound together in peace.
And I pray that your love may grow stronger and stronger, [along] with how much you know, and [that you may grow] in your ability to comprehend things.
And may the Lord cause your love for one another, and for everyone, to increase and overflow, just as ours does for you also.
So, the person who rejects [this exhortation] is not [merely] rejecting what man says but God [Himself], who gives His Holy Spirit to you.
We ought to thank God for you always, brothers, since it is proper, because your faith is growing so much and the love that every one of you has for each other is increasing more and more.
But we ought to thank God for you always, brothers [who are] dearly loved by the Lord, because God has chosen you from the beginning [Note: Some manuscripts use the Greek word for "firstfruits" instead of "beginning" here, but it is difficult to know in what sense the Thessalonian Christians were "first"], in order to be saved through being set apart by the Holy Spirit and through belief of the truth [of the Gospel].
As I urged you to do when I was leaving Macedonia [See Acts 20:1ff], I want you to remain in Ephesus in order to urge certain people not to teach a different [i.e., false] doctrine,
Do not allow anyone to look down on you because you are [so] young, but you should be an example to those who believe [in Christ] in your speech, in your conduct, in your love, in your faith [and] in your purity.
[to] older women as [you would to] mothers; [to] the younger women as [you would to] your sisters, in a [morally] pure way.
[Also] guard that precious treasure [i.e., the Gospel message] which was entrusted to you by the Holy Spirit, who lives in us.
and after becoming perfectly [qualified], He became the source of never ending salvation to all those who obey Him.
For God is not [so] unjust as to forget the work you are doing and the love you have shown for Him, as you ministered to the saints [i.e., His holy people] and continue to minister [to them].
how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Holy Spirit [or, His eternal Spirit] offered Himself without [moral] blemish to God, cleanse our consciences from deeds which lead to [spiritual] death to serve the living God?
By [having] faith, when Abraham was called [by God] to leave [his homeland] and go to a place he would later receive as an inheritance [i.e., Palestine], he obeyed God and went out, not knowing where he was going.
If a brother or sister is without [adequate] clothing and needs daily food,
In the same way [that Jesus was submissive], you wives should submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, even though they may not obey the [Gospel] message [they have heard] they may, without your talking [to them about it],
Above everything else, have a warm love for one another, for such a love keeps many sins from occurring [between you].
For the time has [now] come for the house of God [the church, See I Tim. 3:15] to begin receiving judgment [i.e., by undergoing persecution], and if it starts with us [Christians], what will be the [ultimate] end of people who do not obey the Gospel of God?
and brotherly kindness along with your godliness, and with your brotherly kindness, develop love.
[Now] this is the message that you people heard from the beginning [of Christ's ministry], that we should love one another [See Mark 12:31],
[For] we [can] know that we have passed out of [the realm of spiritual] death and into [spiritual] life, because we [show] love for the brothers [and sisters]. The person who does not love [them] continues to be [spiritually] dead.
And this is His commandment: We should believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ [i.e., the person of Christ], and love one another, just He has commanded us to do.
Loved ones, we should have love for one another, because love comes from [the very nature of] God, and every person who [continually] loves [others] has been [spiritually] conceived by God [See 2:29; 3:9], and knows [he is in fellowship with] God.
No person has gazed upon God [at any time]; [but] if we love one another, God [continually] lives in our hearts, and His love is made complete within us.
If a person says, "I love God," yet [in reality] hates his brother, he is a liar. For the person who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot [possibly] love God, whom he has never seen.
"But, this is what I have against you, that you have forsaken your first love [i.e., love for Christ and His church].