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1 Thessalonians 2:7

ESV But we were gentle among you, like a nursing mother taking care of her own children.
NIV Instead, we were like young children among you. Just as a nursing mother cares for her children,
NASB But we proved to be gentle among you. As a nursing mother tenderly cares for her own children,
CSB Although we could have been a burden as Christ's apostles, instead we were gentle among you, as a nurse nurtures her own children.
NLT As apostles of Christ we certainly had a right to make some demands of you, but instead we were like children among you. Or we were like a mother feeding and caring for her own children.
KJV But we were gentle among you, even as a nurse cherisheth her children:

What does 1 Thessalonians 2:7 mean?

Paul compares the care he and his missionary companions gave the young believers at Thessalonica to the care a nursing mother gives her own babies. They had fed the newborn Christians wholesome spiritual food so they would develop well. By using the words "own children" in this verse, Paul was showing how closely he identified with the Thessalonian believers. This demonstrates how much personal responsibility he assumed for their spiritual wellness.

Paul's love for the newborn Christians at Thessalonica reminds us of the tender care Moses' mother gave him in Egypt. By faith, she and her husband hid him for three months from Pharaoh, who had ruled that all the Hebrew male infants should be thrown into the Nile (Exodus 1:22; Hebrews 11:23). Finally, when she could not conceal Moses any longer, she put him in a waterproof basket, placed him among the river's reeds at a strategic location where Pharaoh's daughter bathed, and positioned Moses' adult sister on the riverbank to watch over baby Moses. When Pharaoh's daughter saw little Moses, she sent her maid to rescue him. Moses' sister suggested getting a nurse from the Hebrew women to take care of Moses. When the princess agreed, Moses' sister introduced Moses' mother as the prospective nurse, and the princess hired Moses' mother to care for him until he was weaned (Exodus 2:1–10). So Moses' mother continued to lovingly care for him.

No one can measure a faithful mother's love for her children, nor can anyone measure Paul's love for his spiritual children at Thessalonica.
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