Skip to main content

Posts

Most Recent Post

1 Thessalonians 2:16

by hindering us from speaking to the Gentiles that they might be saved—so as always to fill up the measure of their sins. But wrath has come upon them at last! (1 Thessalonians 2:16 - ESV) Continued clarification as to how the Jews of Jerusalem perscuted the church, killed Jesus, displeased God, and ultimately were opposing all of mankind: They hindered the Gospel. Hindering the speaking of the Gospel is opposition to all of mankind. 
This verse ends on a challenging statement. Paul mentions that they are filling up the measure of their sins. and that wrath has come. There are many views on this, and commentators do not agree on the meaning, but there is a consensus that in some way it echoes Old Testament statements like the ones referring to the sin of the Amorites not being complete... (Genesis 15:16) The wrath that has come upon them is most likely referring to the fact that those who do not believe will experience the fullness of God's wrath. 
Recent posts

1 Thessalonians 2:15

who killed both the Lord Jesus and the prophets, and drove us out, and displease God and oppose all mankind (1 Thessalonians 2:15 - ESV) A continued indictment against the Jews of Jerusalem and the way they persecuted the Church. It did not start with a persecution of the church, it started with the crucifixion of Jesus. Paul then says that this is "displeasing to God" and is ultimately "opposing all mankind."

1 Thessalonians 2:14

For you, brothers, became imitators of the churches of God in Christ Jesus that are in Judea. For you suffered the same things from your own countrymen as they did from the Jews, (1 Thessalonians 2:14 - ESV) Paul is again pointing out the way they have imitated someone else, who was imitating Christ. First he mentioned this in chapter one, when he pointed out that they were imitating Paul, Silas, and Timothy ... who were imitating Jesus. Now he says that they were imitating the churches in Judea, who were imitating Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 2:13

And we also thank God constantly for this, that when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men but as what it really is, the word of God, which is at work in you believers. (1 Thessalonians 2:13 - ESV) There are two things that they do when they hear the word... but the fact that they heard the word implies a couple of things already. First it implies that it is being spoken. The Gospel is being shared verbally. Second it implies that they were listening. 
Now that they have heard the "Heard Word of God," there are two things that happen. Number One: It is received. This word (received) goes beyond simple hearing. It is the word that is often used in Greek literature for a student taking in what their teacher is teaching. They were listening, hearing, and it was being taken in! There was mental computation happening. Thought processes were being incorporated. World views adjusted. Sights shifted. 
Number Two: It is accepted. O…

1 Thessalonians 2:11–12

For you know how, like a father with his children, we exhorted each one of you and encouraged you and charged you to walk in a manner worthy of God, who calls you into his own kingdom and glory. (1 Thessalonians 2:11–12 - ESV) Paul is not done with his efforts at transparency with the Thessalonians. He has moved on to another example, this time, instead of likening himself to a mother who is gentle, he has likened himself to a father who now puts them under pressure for action. 
There are three things he says he has done:  Exhorted: Called up. Called to action. Called alongside. Encouraged: A step further. Called to action with an "I'm in this with you" attitude displayed. Charged to Walk: Very much a "Go get-em" feel. And lest you forget the role of God in all of this, he mentions that it isn't Paul and it isn't random that they are being exhorted, encouraged, and charged... It is a calling of God.

1 Thessalonians 2:10

You are witnesses, and God also, how holy and righteous and blameless was our conduct toward you believers. (1 Thessalonians 2:10 - ESV) This is not a bragging or boasting session coming from Paul. It is an open and honest offer at true transparency. Paul has invited them to examine his life under a microscope, so to speak, to see if he is living what he is proclaiming. Paul is never a "do what I say, not what I do" sort of preacher. Instead, he is a "let me show you how it is done" sort of living example.

1 Thessalonians 2:9

For you remember, brothers, our labor and toil: we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, while we proclaimed to you the gospel of God. (1 Thessalonians 2:9 - ESV) Paul has expressed his feelings about the Thessalonian Christians and opened himself up to them, going back to the purpose of opening up about his sharing his life with them... He mentions it here as additional evidence that those who have ministered to them are not like the other traveling philosophers and speakers of Paul's day. And he is using their memories of how he ministered to show this to them. While they were proclaiming the gospel, they did not burden the people with the support of these traveling evangelists. They were bi-vocational... they worked to support themselves... not that it ought to always be this way, but in this fragile time of the first proclamations of the gospel, it turned to be very important.