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Bible Commentaries

Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

2 Thessalonians 1

Verses 1-3

2 Thessalonians 1:3 . Ὀφείλομεν , we are bound ) Urged by exultation of mind on grounds so manifest. So also ch. 2 Thessalonians 2:13 . [ There is herein shown a generous sense of a debt of that kind . V. g.] ἄξιον , worthy, meet, befitting ) On account of the magnitude of the fact. Comp. 1 Corinthians 16:4 . [ Are the proofs of thy Christianity ‘worthy’ of thanks being given to God on account of them by those? V. g.] ἡ πίστις · ἡ ἀγάπη , faith; love ) Of hope, 2 Thessalonians 1:4-53.1.5 . For these three graces are usually joined.

Verse 4

2 Thessalonians 1:4 . Ἡμᾶς αὐτοὺς , we ourselves ) Paul himself , with Silvanus and Timothy, gloried, as being a witness; he not merely heard of the fact from witnesses. ὑπὲρ , for ) construed with εὐχαριστεῖν , to render thanks , 2 Thessalonians 1:3 . Hence at the end of 2Th 1:3 we must put a comma; comp. Colossians 1:5 , note. The parallelism [the clauses and words in 2 Thessalonians 1:3-53.1.4 , standing parallel to one another] gives force. καὶ πίστεως , and faith ) Faith here denotes faithful constancy in confession of the truth.

Verse 5

2 Thessalonians 1:5 . Ἔνδειγμα ) namely, ὄν [ It being a token , etc.] The Accusative absolute; comp. Acts 26:3 , note. The fact of your ἀνέχεσθαι , enduring , 2 Thessalonians 1:4 , is a proof or token . δικαίας , just, righteous ) What is stated as a Proposition in this clause is discussed at 2 Thessalonians 1:6-53.1.7 . εἰς τὸ καταξιωθῆναι , that you may be counted worthy ) This clause is connected (coheres) with ye endure . ὑπὲρ ἧς ) for which . The suffering ( πάσχετε ) makes them worthy of the kingdom.

Verse 6

2 Thessalonians 1:6 . Παρὰ Θεῷ , with God ) Although good and bad men do not estimate the injuries done by the latter, and the sufferings endured by the former, as of so great importance. θλίβουσιν θλίψιν , affliction [tribulation] to them that afflict [trouble]) The lex talionis [compensation in kind]. To this refer 2 Thessalonians 1:8-53.1.9 .

Verse 7

2 Thessalonians 1:7 . Καὶ ὑμῖν , and to you ) To this refer 2 Thessalonians 1:10-53.1.11 . τοῖς θλιβουμένοις , who are afflicted ) In the middle voice, who endure affliction; comp. 2 Thessalonians 1:4 , at the end. ἄνεσιν , rest ) θλίψις , affliction , and ἄνεσις , rest , are opposed to each other with great propriety, 2 Corinthians 7:5 ; 2 Corinthians 8:13 . Moreover rest includes also abundance of good things, 2 Thessalonians 1:10 . μεθʼ ἡμῶν ) with us, i.e. with the saints of Israel, 2 Thessalonians 1:10 , note. Comp. 1 Thessalonians 2:14 . μετʼ ἀγγέλων δυνάμεως , with angels of might, mighty angels ) The angels serve Christ in the putting forth of His power.

Verse 8

2 Thessalonians 1:8 . Ἐν πυρὶ φλογὸς ) Others read ἐν φλογὶ πυρὸς . [1] The same variety occurs, Acts 7:30 : ἐν φλογὶ πυρὸς , LXX., Isaiah 66:15 . ΤΟῖς ΜῊ ΕἸΔΌΔΙ ΘΕῸΝ ) to those who are living in heathen ignorance of God , 1 Thessalonians 4:5 ; Psalms 79:6 . So Job 18:21 , לא ידע אל , ΤῶΝ ΜῊ ΕἸΔΌΤΩΝ ΤῸΝ ΚΎΡΙΟΝ , of those [2] who know not the Lord . μὴ ὑπακούουσι , who do not obey ) chiefly by the Jews , to whom the Gospel concerning Christ [3] had been preached.

[1] Lachm. reads ἐν φλογὶ πυρὸς with BD( Δ )G g Vulg., Iren. 273, 265. Tisch. reads ἐν πυρὶ φλογὸς with A f and Rec. Text. ED.

[2] The Hebrew is sing., of him that knoweth not God . TR.

[3] It is considered, however, by the margin of the 2d ED., that the name of Christ should rather be omitted in this verse, and therefore the Germ. Vers. has rejected it. E. B.

BD( Δ ) omit Χριστοῦ , and so Tisch. But AG fg Vulg., Iren. 265, and Rec. Text, support it. Lachm. therefore retains it, but in brackets. ED.

Verse 9

2 Thessalonians 1:9 . Ἀπὸ , from ) It is a judicial procedure from the Divine presence itself, that will inflict punishment upon them. מפני , from the face. Devils will not be the tormentors; for even in this life bad men are not punished by devils, but rather by good angels: and in Psalms 78:49 , the phrase, angels of (bringing) evil, may even denote good angels. [4] Exodus 12:23 ; 2 Samuel 24:16 . ΠΡΟΣΏΠΟΥ , the face ) This face will be intolerable to them; they shall not see it, but they shall be made to feel it. Face and glory are generally parallel. ἰσχύος , of His might ) Lay aside your fierceness (haughty confidence of ‘might’) ye wicked men!

[4] “He cast upon them the fierceness of His anger by sending evil angels among them.” LXX. διʼ ἀγγέλων πονηρῶν . ED.

Verse 10

2 Thessalonians 1:10 . Ἐν , in ) Saints and believers shall not only behold Him, but by them the admirable glory of Christ will put itself forth in its fulness. See the following verses. ἁγίοις , the saints ) The mention of glory , and the saints , is sweetly joined, as is also the mention of admiration (Christ coming “to be admired”), and, believers (“them that believe”). πᾶσι , all ) This word, not added to, the saints , but to them that believe , intimates, that the term believers [“them that believe”] has a somewhat wider signification than saints . See Acts 20:32 , note. So all , Philippians 1:9 , [5] note. ‘Saints’ are those of the circumcision; ‘believers’ are they of the Gentiles, among whom were also the Thessalonians [ who, when the testimony of the Apostles had reached also them, received it with praise-worthy firmness of mind . V. g.]. Comp. the two expressions [6] standing in antithesis to these, 2 Thessalonians 1:8 , note. ὅτι , because ) The motive of ‘admiration’ [which shall prompt them to “admire Christ”] will be, that the testimony of the Apostles concerning Christ, having obtained faith among the Thessalonians, proves to be what it professed [stands forth unshaken] in that day , on which truth alone stands firm. Comp. Philippians 2:16 ; 1 Thessalonians 2:19 . ἐπιστεύθη ) נאמן , ΠΙΣΤῸΝ , stood forth as faithful [was proved to be trustworthy and stedfast], and as such was received [credited] by you, upon whom it (the testimony) had come. ἐφʼ ὑμᾶς [ among you, i.e. ] even to you ) coming as far as to you , in the west. ἘΝ Τῇ ) construe with ἜΛΘῌ , When He shall come [not with ἐπιστεύθη , was believed or accounted faithful ].

[5] “I pray that your love may abound in knowledge and in all judgment;” where the all is prefixed before ‘judgment’ as being the more general term; but not before knowledge as being more special and limited. So here, all before “them that believe,” but not before the more restricted term, “the saints.” ED.

[6] Viz. τοῖς μὴ εἰδόσι Θεὸν , “them that know not God,” namely, Gentiles; and τοῖς μὴ ὑπακούουσιν , “them that obey not, namely, the Jews who refused to believe, though the Gospel was preached to them. ED.

Verse 11

2 Thessalonians 1:11 . Εἰς ὃ , for which object) We strive for this in prayer. ἀξιώσῃ , would make you worthy ) There is no dignity in us before we are called, 2 Timothy 1:9 . It is not until afterwards conferred upon us in that way, which is presently described. ὁ Θεὸς ἡμῶν ) our God , whom we serve. εὐδοκίαν , good pleasure ) on the part of God. πίστεως , of faith ) on your part.

Verse 12

2 Thessalonians 1:12 . Τὸ ὄνομα , the name ) We confer nothing on the Lord, whereas the Lord really confers upon us salvation; and hence His name is glorified in us; and we ourselves moreover in Him. χάριν , grace ) with this grace in view, he mentioned ἀγαθωσύνης , of goodness , 2 Thessalonians 1:11 .

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Bibliographical Information
Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on 2 Thessalonians 1". Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. 1897.