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Bible Commentaries

Dunagan's Commentary on the Bible

2 Thessalonians 1

Verse 1

2Th_1:1 “Paul, and Silvanus, and Timothy, unto the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ”

“Paul, and Silvanus, and Timothy”: ( 1Th_1:1 ). All three are still together in Corinth. “In God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ”: One either has fellowship with both or fellowship with neither, they are a package deal ( 2Jn_1:9 ; 1Jn_4:15 ). “The phrases applied to the church indicate that it is a spiritual body, distinct from any mere political or social organization. This church in Thessalonica is ‘in God’ and ‘in Christ’. That is to say, all that the church is, all that for which it exists, all that it seeks to do, is vitally related to God as the divine Father and to Jesus Christ as its divine Savior and Lord” (Erdman p. 79).

Verse 2

2Th_1:2 “Grace to you and peace from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ”

“We all know the tremendous value of a letter from someone we love, especially if we are alone and suffering; it can be of great encouragement. Imagine what it was like in apostolic times to receive a letter from the beloved apostle Paul, a man who had suffered and given so much for the good of God's people” (Denton Lectureship p. 221). As we move past the greeting, the following verses will break down into these main thoughts: Gratitude to God for their continued faithfulness (1:3-4). A defense of God's justice (1:5-10), and a prayer for their spiritual success (1:11-12).

Even though there were a number of things wrong in Thessalonica, notice how Paul first begins by offering gratitude and praise. In helping other Christians we must try to remain balanced. Unfaithfulness and error cannot be overlooked, but at the same time encouragement and praise should be given for what a person is doing right ( 2Ti_4:2 ). Barclay notes, “’Blessed are those’, said Mark Rutherford, ‘who heal us of our self-despisings’” (p. 243).

Verse 3

2Th_1:3 “We are bound to give thanks to God always to you, brethren, even as it is meet, for that your faith growth exceedingly, and the love of each one of you all toward one another aboundeth”

“Are bound”: “We owe a constant debt of thanksgiving to God” (Knox). “The thought is not of giving thanks for duty's sake, but of the obligation imposed by joyfulness and relief” (Marshall p. 170). This is the type of motivation that comes from within and that is lasting. Paul did not need to be pushed to give thanks, for he already felt such an inward compulsion ( Rom_1:14 ; 2Co_5:14 ; Gal_2:20 ). Paul pushed himself, because he realized all that God had done for him. Do we feel "obligated" to stop whatever we are doing and express our gratitude to God? Some writers suggest that the Thessalonians felt that they were not worthy of the praise that Paul had given them in the first letter. “Paul strongly maintains that his words had not been too strong” (Morris p. 194). “To God”: Stott notes that Paul thanks God for the present faithfulness of the Thessalonians. In this manner, the Thessalonians are not flattered (for God gets the glory), but at the same time Paul is affirming them without spoiling them. When was the last time that we told another Christian, “I thank God for you”?

“Even as it is meet”: “As is only fitting” (NASV). “As it but right” (TCNT). This infers that there are times when praise and gratitude are the right and appropriate thing to offer. “Worthwhile or appropriate” (Robertson p. 41). Paul did not have the attitude that patting someone on the back will only give them a big head.

“For”: The reason why such gratitude is due. “Your faith growth exceedingly”: “Your faith thrives so well” (Knox). “Growth exceedingly”: To increase above ordinary degree. “Very vigorous growth” (Denton Lectureship p. 222). “We rejoice when a church grows in number, budget, and the size of its building. But do we rejoice when a church grows in faith and love?” (Fields pp. 166-167). Stott makes a good observation when he says, “We tend to speak of faith in static terms as something we either have or have not. ‘I wish I had your faith’, we say, like ‘I wish I had your complexion’, as if it were a genetic endowment. Or we complain ‘I've lost my faith’ like ‘I've lost my spectacles’, as if it were a commodity. But faith is a relationship of trust in God, and like all relationships is a living, dynamic, growing thing. It is similar with love. We assume rather helplessly that we either love somebody or we do not, and that we can do nothing about it. But love also, like faith, is a living relationship, whose growth we can take steps to nurture” (p. 144).

The quality of our faith ( Mat_8:26 ; Mat_8:10 ), is something that we do have control over, and we can allow things to hinder our faith and stunt it's growth ( Luk_8:14 ); or we can selfishly embrace ideas which destroy our faith ( 1Ti_1:19 ). We can equally take advantage of those things which can result in a stronger faith ( Rom_10:17 ; Jam_1:2-4 ). Barclay notes, “It is the mark of the advancing Christian that he grows surer and surer of Jesus Christ every day. James Agate once said, ‘My mind is not like a bed which has to be made and remade. There are some things of which I am absolutely sure’” (p. 243).

“And the love of each one of you all toward one another aboundeth”: “And your mutual love, one and all, is increasing” (Mof). “Each one of you”: This congregation was practicing the Lord's new commandment ( Joh_13:34 ). “Aboundeth”: To make or be more, increase, to superabound. Paul's prayer for this congregation was finding fulfillment ( 1Th_3:12 ; 1Th_4:10 ).

Genuine abounding mutual love among Christians is emphasized so much in the Scriptures, because there are so many occasions in the life of any congregation where such love is needed to avoid division, bitterness, and internal turmoil. Love keeps us centered on God's purpose, God's goal, and His mission. Love keeps us from being ineffective and neutralized.

Verse 4

2Th_1:4 “so that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and in the afflictions which ye endure”

“So that”: “Therefore” (NASV). “So much is this the case” (TCNT). “We ourselves glory in you in the churches of God”: “We ourselves speak with pride, before the churches of God” (TCNT). “So that we are always boasting of you among the churches of God” (Wms). “Paul was not above praising one church to other churches, to provoke them to good works. Here he is boasting of Thessalonica in Macedonia to the Corinthians as he did later to the Corinthians about the collection ( 2Co_8:1-15 ) after having first boasted to the Macedonians about the Corinthians ( 2Co_9:1-5 )” (Robertson p. 42) . “Paul was not a man to keep quiet about something good” (Fields p. 168).

“Patience”: Cheerful and hopeful endurance. “It does not mean the ability passively to bear anything, it has been described as ‘a masculine constancy under trial.’ It describes the spirit that does not only patiently endure the circumstances in which it finds itself; but which masters them and uses them to strengthen its own nerve and sinew. It accepts the blows of life, but in accepting them it transforms them into stepping stones to new achievement” (Barclay p. 244). “And faith in all your persecutions”: “Paul had sent Timothy to Thessalonica to exhort them concerning their faith ( 1Th_3:2 ). This verse indicates that their faith was doing very well” (Fields p. 168). “Persecutions”: “To chase, to pursue” (Robertson p. 42). “And in the afflictions ye endure”: Are presently enduring. “Afflictions”: Pressure, trouble. “’Persecutions’ indicates the hostile attacks of their enemies. ‘Afflictions’ points to any or to consequent sufferings and tribulations” (Erdman p. 82). “The use of ‘all’ shows that the troubles had been many , while the present tense in the verb ‘endure’ makes it plain that their difficulties were not yet over” (Morris p. 197). Be impressed with the strong faith that relatively new converts can manifest even during the most difficult times. These Christians had refused to allow the pressures of life to choke out the word from their hearts ( Mar_4:19 ). “Persecution can take many forms: nicknames, taunts, cold looks, social ostracism, misrepresentations or deliberate lies, abusive or evil speech, ill treatment, job loss, seizing or destruction of property, imprisonment, or death” (Denton Lectures p. 226).

“When suffering comes, shall we be discouraged and give up? How discouragement and even depression sometimes sweep down over our souls! ‘Why, oh why, is this happening to me? I've done nothing wrong!’ The Lord does not feel sorry for us, but gives His congratulations!” (Denton p. 226). Mat_5:11-12 ; Act_5:40-42 .

Verse 5

2Th_1:5 “which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God; to the end that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer”

“Which is”: “We come now to the main point of 2 Thessalonians, chapter 1. So often we see vice flourish and virtue perish. The Thessalonians probably wondered why they should be suffering persecution when they were trying to do the pure will of God. This problem of the prosperity of the wicked has always been perplexing to the righteous ( Psa_73:1-28 )” (Fields p. 169). There is some discussion concerning what is the "manifest token" of the righteous judgment of God. Two views are suggested, the trials and persecutions of the previous verse or the patience and faith of the previous verse. Personally I do not see how the suffering of Christians is an evidence of God's coming judgment. I like what Fields has to say, '"persecutions and tribulations" are plural nouns, while "patience and faith" and "manifest token" are all singular. The patience and faith of Christians often suggest to sinners and persecutors the possibility of a divine origin of the Christian faith, and divine punishment for those who oppose it. It seemed to suggest this to Gamaliel. Act_5:38-40 )” (p. 169). See especially Php_1:28 “in no way alarmed by your opponents--which is a sign of destruction for them, but of salvation to you”).

“Manifest token”: “A proof” (Rhm). “Proof positive” (Mof). “This is evidence of the righteous judgment of God” (RSV). “Of the righteous judgment of God”: This expression infers even when God judges, He is absolutely just and fair. Hell is a "righteous" verdict for unrepentant individuals ( Rom_2:4-5 ). The perspective on suffering that the New Testament presents is vastly different than the perspective held by modern society and even some professed Christians, at times to us, suffering is a necessary evil, something that is to be avoided at all costs. Many religious people would argue that you are released from God's commands, if keeping them causes you to suffer, that is, God does not expect one to obey Him, if that obedience causes one personal pain. To many people, the fact that we are suffering seems to deny God's existence. Morris notes, “Suffering is not thought of as something which may possibly be avoided by the Christian. He must live out his life and develop his Christian character in a world that is dominated by non-Christian ideas. His faith is not some fragile thing, to be kept in a kind of spiritual cotton wool, insulated from all shocks. It is robust, suffering, when we have come to regard it in this light, is not to be thought of as evidence that God has forsaken us, but as evidence that God is with us ( Col_1:24 )” (pp. 197-198).

Here we are given a great insight. How we handle the trials of life can be a great tool for converting others. If others see us as being patient and steadfast, even when suffering, they might want to investigate our "secret". The happy man who lives in the thick of it, if a very attractive advertisement for Christianity ( Php_4:12 ).

“To the end”: “And will result in” (TCNT). “On the other hand, although God was allowing the persecutors some rope. He was using their (the Thessalonians) persecutions as a means through which to develop their faith, love and perseverance, in contrast to the prejudice, anger and bitterness of their persecutors, and so was preparing them for his eternal kingdom” (Stott p. 146). See Heb_12:5 ff; Rom_5:3-5 ; Jam_1:2-3 . “Ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God”: See 2Th_1:11 ; Col_1:10 ; 1Th_2:12 . Even though we cannot earn our salvation or eternal life, eternal life is conditional. We cannot earn salvation, but God does expect us to live a manner of life that is worthy of such. In the context, "faith and patience" in the face of affliction and persecution is the appropriate response to such by one who is walking "worthy" of all that God has done for him. We can never be worthy of God's blessings, but we can live in such a way that demonstrates that we greatly value and appreciate the blessings we have received.

“For which ye also suffer”: ( Act_14:22 ). Jesus suffered so much for us so we should be willing to suffer for His cause. “For”: “On behalf of, in the interest of” (Morris p. 199).

Verse 6

2Th_1:6 “if so be that it is righteous thing with God to recompense affliction to them that afflict you”

“If so be”: “It implies no doubt, but rhetorically puts a recognized fact as a supposition” (Vincent p. 55). Stott notes, “Our habit is to see only the surface appearance, and so make only superficial comments. We see the malice, cruelty, power and arrogance of evil men who persecute. We are tempted to inveigh against God and against the miscarriage of justice. ‘Why doesn't God do something?’ we complain indignantly. And the answer is that He is doing something and will go on doing it. He is allowing his people to suffer, in order to qualify them for his heavenly kingdom. He is allowing the wicked to triumph temporarily, but His just judgment will fall upon them in the end. Thus Paul sees evidence that God's judgment is right in the very situation in which we might see nothing but injustice” (p. 147). “It is a righteous thing with God”: “From God's standpoint” (Robertson p. 43). “Since God deems it just” (TCNT). “Since God considers it but just” (Mof).

Paul plainly asserts that God considers it a very just and righteous thing for the wicked to be punished. God considers hell a just punishment for sin. Sophisticated religious people might have a problem with hell, but God does not. Morris reminds us, “If it is true that the New Testament speaks much of the love and mercy of God it is also true that it does not gloss over the serious nature of moral issues. Our Lord spoke plainly of the fate of those who persist in ways of sin and impenitence ( Mar_9:47 f). Those who followed after did not slur over this truth. They said plainly that the evil-doer can look for nothing but the continuing wrath of God ( Rom_1:18 )” (p. 200). People sometimes argue, “But God is too kind and loving to punish anyone”. Actually, Paul is saying, “God is too kind and loving not to punish those who afflict His people”

“Recompense”: The verb here is a compound “which conveys the thought of a full and due requital” (Morris p. 200).

The word "recompense" infers that sin deserves to be punished. Eternal destruction (1:9), is not overkill, and neither is it an excessive punishment, thus our sins are more much than mere mistakes or slips. They deserve punishment so severe, a punishment that never ends ( Rom_6:23 ). The Bible has always been clear that God always "repays" people for what they have done ( Gal_6:7-8 ). This is one reason why the Christian needs to let God deal out the punishment ( Rom_12:19 ff). For God will repay people and no one will get less than they deserve.

“Affliction”: The word here means anguish and trouble. God takes it very seriously when people oppose Christians. This should serve as a serious warning to all those groups who try to stop the progress of the gospel. The word "affliction" suggests that the eternal punishment mentioned in the context (1:9), will be conscious suffering ( Luk_16:19 ff; Rev_20:10 ). We should also remember that this "affliction" is rewarded after repeated attempts to bring the sinner to God ( Rom_2:4-5 ; 2Pe_3:9-10 ). Marshall notes, “The God whom Paul is describing is a God who does offer love and reconciliation to His enemies, but if they refuse this offer and continue in opposition to His goodness and love, then it would seem inevitable that, having refused mercy, they must face justice” (p. 174).

Verse 7

2Th_1:7 “and to you that are afflicted rest with us, at the revelation of the Lord Jesus from heaven with the angels of His power in flaming fire”

“And to you”: Notice that the wicked and the righteous are both rewarded or recompensed at the same time. In the New Testament we only find one future coming of Christ, which involves all mankind ( Joh_5:28-29 ; 1Th_4:13-18 ; 1Th_5:1-3 ). “Rest”: Relaxation and rest. “Means ‘a loosing, relaxing, relief. The slackening of strings that have been pulled tight’” (Fields p. 172). “Freedom from tensions, relaxation and ease” (Denton Lectureship p. 234). See Heb_4:9 ; Rev_14:3 . The word "rest" infers that God is not a slave-driver, and God wants to see people “at ease”, and “free from the troubles of this earthly existence”. God wants people to be happy and fulfilled. Heaven includes the absence of those things which bring tension and stress ( Rev_21:4 ), and there are no frustrations in heaven. “With us”: Paul, Silvanus and Timothy (1:1). “A little touch which reminds his readers that he is not delivering an academic disquisition on the nature of suffering and recompense. He is speaking out of his own difficult situation” (Morris p. 201).

“At the revelation of the Lord Jesus from heaven”: The term “revelation” here means a disclosure, appearing, coming or manifestation.

The Second coming will be a revealing of Himself to the world, which means it will be a revelation of His glory and power. “Now the Lord is hid from the view of the world, and it is even possible for men to deny His existence. But in that day He will be revealed in all His glory. He will be shown to be what He is” (Morris p. 202). Compare with1 Joh_3:2 “We shall be like Him, because we shall see Him just as He is”.

“With the angels of His power in flaming fire”: Compare with Mat_13:41-42 ; Mat_25:31 ; Jud_1:15 ). Or, His mighty angels ( Isa_37:36 ). “In flaming fire”: “A regular biblical symbol of the holy, consuming nature of God's presence ( Exo_3:2 ; Exo_13:22 ; Exo_19:18 )” (Stott p. 148). “Some commentators prefer to take ‘in flaming fire’ with what follows as indicating the manner in which the vengeance spoken of will be visited on the wicked. It seems preferable to take it with the preceding, and as being the third in the series of prepositional phrases describing the Lord's revelation” (Morris p. 203).

Verse 8

2Th_1:8 “rendering vengeance to them that know not God, and to them that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus”

“Rendering vengeance”: “Lit., ‘out of justice or righteousness', indicating this is not out of vindictiveness but a righteous (just) punishment for their evil deeds ( Rev_16:7 )” (Denton Lectureship pp. 235-236). Carefully note that in the context is the Lord Jesus that renders this vengeance, and yet in the Old Testament the exclusive right for such vengeance is assigned to Jehovah ( Rom_12:19 ; Deu_32:35 ). Morris notes, “It is yet another example of the ease with which the church, from the very first, assigned to the Lord the functions which the Old Testament reserved for Jehovah” (p. 204). Notice how this section contradicts the popular theory of Premillennialism. According to the Bible, both saint and sinner receive their rewards at the same time (not seven, one thousand, or 1007 years apart). “The saints are not to receive their rest several years before the sinners get their tribulation” (Fields p. 172). “To them that know not God”: Unfortunately some have tried to tone down this statement. They argue that the expression does not include those who are sincerely ignorant of God, yet ignorance is not an excuse ( Luk_12:47-48 ). In addition, the sincerely ignorant man still has sins and those sins will condemn him. Remember people are lost before the gospel comes to them ( Mar_16:16 ). Fields notes, “Christ will be perfectly just in taking vengeance on them that know not God. For people are not innocently ignorant. The people of the world do not know God, because they refused to have God in their knowledge ( Rom_1:28 )” (p. 173). Passages such as Psa_19:1 and Rom_1:20 argue that ignorance of God is inexcusable for anyone. For it is man's first priority to seek God ( Act_17:27 ).

“That obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus”: The gospel is more than the facts concerning the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The gospel also contains commandments to be obeyed. In order to end up saved, there is something you must do ( Act_2:37-38 ). Compare with Rom_2:8 ; Heb_5:9 ; 1Jn_2:3 ; Joh_14:15 ; Mat_7:21 . The expression "of our Lord Jesus", reminds us that “The gospel is a message of good news, but it is also an invitation from the King of kings. Rejection of the gospel accordingly is disobedience to a royal invitation” (Morris p. 205) .

Verse 9

2Th_1:9 “who shall suffer punishment, even eternal destruction from the face of the Lord and from the glory of His might”

“Who”: The groups just previously mentioned, this would include everyone outside of Christ. Non-Christians are composed of two basic groups, those who are ignorant and those who have heard enough of the gospel message to reject it. People often complain that it is "unjust" for God to punish those ignorant of Him, yet mankind punishes the ignorant all the time. Being ignorant of a tax law, speed law and so on is not an excuse in our own courts. “Shall”: This is definite, God will not change His mind. “Suffer punishment”: Sin is so awful that it demands, it morally cries out for punishment ( Rom_6:23 ; Eze_18:20 ). “Even”: The specific punishment coming upon those outside of Christ at the last day. “Eternal”: Hell is just as long as Heaven ( Mat_25:46 ). “This punishment of destruction is never ending; it is unlimited. There is no way a person can force into this word a period of time that would eventually end” (Denton Lectureship p. 238). “Destruction”: Some groups try to argue that the word "destruction" means annihilation, that is, hell is simply a cessation of existence. Actually the word does not mean an end of existence or being, but a loss of well-being. “The loss of all that is worthwhile, utter ruin” (Morris p. 205). See Mar_9:43-48 .

“From the face of the Lord and from the glory of His might”: “Banished from the presence of the Lord” (TCNT). “Forever shut away from” (Tay). “Never to see the glory of His power” (Tay). Here we see the real terror of Hell. The non-Christian will be forever removed from God's presence. All good things come from God ( Jam_1:17 ). Hell is a place completely cut off from all blessings. No happiness, joy, peace, contentment, and rest. In this life, at least the rebellious still receive God's physical blessings ( Luk_6:35 ). Ending up lost means, ending up eternally separated from your Creator, from the true Father of the real you ( Heb_12:9 ). It means that one will never find the real purpose of one’s existence, and hence eternally cut off from any hopes of fulfillment, happiness, contentment, satisfaction, meaning, purpose. The same truth is taught, when Jesus will say to the unrepentant, “depart from Me” ( Mat_7:23 ). See also Mat_8:12 ; Luk_13:27 f; Mat_25:30 ; Mat_25:41 .

Morris notes, “Those who oppose the things of God here and now are not engaged in some minor error which can easily be put right in the hereafter. Life here and now has a high and serious dignity” (p. 206).

Verse 10

2Th_1:10 “when He shall come to be glorified in His saints, and to be marveled at in all them that believed (because our testimony unto you was believed) in that day”

“When”: In the context we have a single period of time "in that day", when all these events take place. The reward for the righteous and the punishment for the wicked is not separated by years or a millennium. “To be glorified in His saints”: “Honoured in His People” (TCNT). “The meaning probably is that He will not only be glorified ‘among’ them, but ‘in’ them” (Morris p. 207). Paul is saying that Christians will share His glory ( Rev_3:21 ). Barclay notes, ‘The glory of Christ is in those who through Him have learned to endure and to suffer and to conquer. A teacher's glory lies in the scholars he produces; a parent's glory lies in the children whom he has begotten and to us there is given the tremendous privilege and responsibility that Christ's glory can lie in us. We can be such that we can bring discredit or we can bring glory to the Master whose we are and whom we seek to serve. Can there be any privilege and can there be any responsibility greater than that?” (p. 244) . What an impressive thought! Mere men and women can bring glory and honor to God. What a privilege ( Mat_5:16 ).

“And to be marveled at in all them that believed”: “It will be a breath-taking wonder to all who believe” (Phi). “And adored among all believers” (NEB). “Marveled”: To admire, have in admiration, marvel, and wonder. “The wonders of that day are not to be taken for granted” (Morris p. 207). Too often we tend to make the judgment day into nothing more than a day of punishment. For the Christian that day will be a day to stand in awe of Jesus Christ, to see Him face to face, to just marvel as His splendor, and we will relish in His greatness forever. All other encounters that believers in the past have had with God (such as Noah, Moses, the Apostles) cannot compare to the events of this day.

“Because”: Those that marvel on this day are only those who have believed the message delivered by the apostles. '”Our testimony unto you was believed”: Which means that if one does not presently accept the testimony found in the New Testament, one cannot be saved ( Rom_1:16 ). There is no second chance to believe on that day, rather those who get to marvel on "that day" are those who have previously believed in this life ( Mar_16:16 ; Rom_10:17 ).

Paul’s Prayer

Verse 11

2Th_1:11 “To which end we also pray always for you, that our God may count you worthy of your calling, and fulfill every desire of goodness and every work of faith, with power”

“To which end”: “In view of this great prospect” (Phi). “With this in view” (TCNT). “We also pray always for you”: Since so much is at stake, and seeing that so much glory and happiness can be gained or eternally lost. “May count you worthy of your calling”: Which demands of every Christian a life that takes such a responsibility and privilege very seriously. Paul, was unworthy of the gospel message ( Gal_1:13-15 ), and yet once saved, he tried his best to live up to such an unmerited privilege ( 1Co_15:9-10 ). There is a lifestyle (conduct and attitude) that fits being called by the gospel ( Eph_4:1 ff). Christians who continue in sin, or put other things before God, will not be counted worthy of their calling, for the simple reason that they did not put much value upon being a Christian in the first place.

“And fulfill every desire of goodness and every work of faith, with power”: “Fulfill every good resolve” (RSV). Good intentions are not sufficient, rather good intentions need to be carried into action. The above prayer infers that God is willing that good intentions be turned into action in every Christian, and this demands our cooperation. God is not going to override our freewill, but if we are listening to His word, if we allow ourselves to be impressed with His nature, His love and goodness, we will do more than just think or talk about things that need to be done, we will do them. “The expression reminds us that faith is not simply an intellectual attitude which does nothing. Faith is always busy. A true faith will clothe itself in works” (Morris p. 210 ). Notice the word "every". God wants Christians who are fruitful, abounding, consistent and who have their complete will and heart into serving Him. Doing a good deed now and then will not cut it, and neither will a spurt of zeal here and there.

Verse 12

2Th_1:12 “that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and ye in Him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ”

“That”: The final result. Good deeds, acts of faith have an even higher purpose than merely helping someone. The aim is always to bring honor to God ( Mat_5:16 ).

“The name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you”: Yes, we can live in such a way that enables others to see what a wonderful Savior we have been given. In biblical times the "name" of a person stood for their complete character, that is, the individual who wore that name and all that they stood for. It is not enough that people respect the name Jesus Christ, instead our goal is to get them to honor and obey the person who wears that name. “And ye in Him”: At the last day He will glorify us ( Php_3:20-21 ). “According to the grace”: Even though there exist conditions to receive eternal life, it is still unmerited. To Paul, a salvation which was conditional was completely consistent with a salvation that could not be earned. “Of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ”: Notice how "grace" proceeds from both the Father and the Son, this is another indication of Jesus' Divine status. Morris notes, “Since there is an article before ‘our God’ and none before ‘Lord Jesus Christ’, it is grammatically possible to understand the expression to mean, ‘our God and Lord, Jesus Christ’. The fact that there can be this doubt as to whether one or both (Father and Son) is meant is itself indicative of the closeness of their connection in the mind of Paul” (p. 212).

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Bibliographical Information
Dunagan, Mark. "Commentary on 2 Thessalonians 1". "Dunagan's Commentaries on the Bible". 1999-2014.