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Bible Commentaries

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament
1 Thessalonians 1

 

 

Other Authors
Verse 1

Paul, and Silvanus, and Timothy (Παυλος και Σιλουανος και ΤιμοτεοςPaulos kai Silouanos kai Timotheos). Nominative absolute as customary in letters. Paul associates with himself Silvanus (Silas of Acts, spelled ΣιλβανοςSilbanos in D and the papyri), a Jew and Roman citizen, and Timothy, son of Jewish mother and Greek father, one of Paul‘s converts at Lystra on the first tour. They had both been with Paul at Thessalonica, though Timothy is not mentioned by Luke in Acts in Macedonia till Beroea (Acts 17:14.). Timothy had joined Paul in Athens (1 Thessalonians 3:1.), had been sent back to Thessalonica, and with Silas had rejoined Paul in Corinth (1 Thessalonians 3:5; Acts 18:5, 2 Corinthians 1:19). Silas is the elder and is mentioned first, but neither is in any sense the author of the Epistle any more than Sosthenes is Corinthians-author of I Corinthians or Timothy of II Corinthians, though Paul may sometimes have them in mind when he uses “we” in the Epistle. Paul does not here call himself “apostle” as in the later Epistles, perhaps because his position has not been so vigorously attacked as it was later. Ellicott sees in the absence of the word here a mark of the affectionate relations existing between Paul and the Thessalonians.

Unto the church of the Thessalonians (τηι εκκλησιαι Τεσσαλονικεωνtēi ekklēsiāi Thessalonikeōn). The dative case in address. Note absence of the article with ΤεσσαλονικεωνThessalonikeōn because a proper name and so definite without it. This is the common use of εκκλησιαekklēsia for a local body (church). The word originally meant “assembly” as in Acts 19:39, but it came to mean an organization for worship whether assembled or unassembled (cf. Acts 8:3). The only superscription in the oldest Greek manuscripts (Aleph B A) is Προς Τεσσαλονικεις ΑPros Thessalonikeis A (To the Thessalonians First). But probably Paul wrote no superscription and certainly he would not write A to it before he had written II Thessalonians (B). His signature at the close was the proof of genuineness (2 Thessalonians 3:17) against all spurious claimants (2 Thessalonians 2:2). Unfortunately the brittle papyrus on which he wrote easily perished outside of the sand heaps and tombs of Egypt or the lava covered ruins of Herculaneum. What a treasure that autograph would be!

In God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ (εν τεωι πατρι και κυριωι ησου Χριστωιen theōi patri kai kuriōi Jēsou Christōi). This church is grounded in (ενen with the locative case) and exists in the sphere and power of

God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. No article in the Greek, for both τεωι πατριtheōi patri and κυριωι ησου Χριστωιkuriōi Jēsou Christōi are treated as proper names. In the very beginning of this first Epistle of Paul we meet his Christology. He at once uses the full title, “Lord Jesus Christ,” with all the theological content of each word. The name “Jesus” (Saviour, Matthew 1:21) he knew, as the “Jesus of history,” the personal name of the Man of Galilee, whom he had once persecuted (Acts 9:5), but whom he at once, after his conversion, proclaimed to be “the Messiah,” (ο Χριστοςho Christos Acts 9:22). This position Paul never changed. In the great sermon at Antioch in Pisidia which Luke has preserved (Acts 13:23) Paul proved that God fulfilled his promise to Israel by raising up “Jesus as Saviour” (σωτηρα Ιησουνsōtēra Iēsoun). Now Paul follows the Christian custom by adding ΧριστοςChristos (verbal from χριωchriō to anoint) as a proper name to Jesus (Jesus Christ) as later he will often say “Christ Jesus” (Colossians 1:1). And he dares also to apply κυριοςkurios (Lord) to “Jesus Christ,” the word appropriated by Claudius (Dominus, ΚυριοςKurios) and other emperors in the emperor-worship, and also common in the Septuagint for God as in Psalm 32:1. (quoted by Paul in Romans 4:8). Paul uses ΚυριοςKurios of God (1 Corinthians 3:5) or of Jesus Christ as here. In fact, he more frequently applies it to Christ when not quoting the Old Testament as in Romans 4:8. And here he places “the Lord Jesus Christ” in the same category and on the same plane with “God the father.” There will be growth in Paul‘s Christology and he will never attain all the knowledge of Christ for which he longs (Philemon 3:10-12), but it is patent that here in his first Epistle there is no “reduced Christ” for Paul. He took Jesus as “Lord” when he surrendered to Jesus on the Damascus Road: “And I said, What shall I do, Lord? And the Lord said to me” (Acts 22:10). It is impossible to understand Paul without seeing clearly this first and final stand for the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul did not get this view of Jesus from current views of Mithra or of Isis or any other alien faith. The Risen Christ became at once for Paul the Lord of his life.

Grace to you and peace (χαρις υμιν και ειρηνηcharis humin kai eirēnē). These words, common in Paul‘s Epistles, bear “the stamp of Paul‘s experience” (Milligan). They are not commonplace salutations, but the old words “deepened and spiritualised” (Frame). The infinitive (χαιρεινchairein) so common in the papyri letters and seen in the New Testament also (Acts 15:23; Acts 23:26; James 1:1) here gives place to χαριςcharis one of the great words of the New Testament (cf. John 1:16.) and particularly of the Pauline Epistles. Perhaps no one word carries more meaning for Paul‘s messages than this word χαριςcharis (from χαιρωchairō rejoice) from which χαριζομαιcharizomai comes.

Peace (ειρηνηeirēnē) is more than the Hebrew shalōm so common in salutations. One recalls the “peace” that Christ leaves to us (John 14:27) and the peace of God that passes all understanding (Philemon 4:7). This introduction is brief, but rich and gracious and pitches the letter at once on a high plane.


Verse 2

We give thanks (ευχαριστουμενeucharistoumen). Late denominative verb ευχαριστεωeucharisteō from ευχαριστοςeucharistos (grateful) and that from ευeu well and χαριζομαιcharizomai to show oneself kind. See χαριςcharis in 1 Thessalonians 1:1. “The plural implies that all three missionaries prayed together” (Moffatt).

Always (παντοτεpantote). Late word, rare in lxx. So with ευχαριστεωeucharisteō in 2 Thessalonians 1:3; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; 1 Corinthians 1:4; Ephesians 5:20; Philemon 1:3. Moffatt takes it to mean “whenever Paul was at his prayers.” Of course, he did not make audible prayer always, but he was always in the spirit of prayer, “a constant attitude” (Milligan), “in tune with the Infinite.”

For you all (περι παντων υμωνperi pantōn humōn). Paul “encircled (περιperi around) them all,” including every one of them and the church as a whole. Distance lends enchantment to the memory of slight drawbacks. Paul is fond of this phrase “you all,” particularly in Phil. (Philemon 1:3, Philemon 1:7).

Making mention (μνειαν ποιουμενοιmneian poioumenoi). Paul uses this very idiom in Romans 1:9; Ephesians 1:16; Philemon 1:4. Milligan cites a papyrus example of μνειαν ποιουμενοιmneian poioumenoi in prayer (B. Y. U. 652, 5). Did Paul have a prayer list of the Thessalonian disciples which he read over with Silas and Timothy?

In here is επιepi = “in the time of our prayers.” “Each time that they are engaged in prayers the writers mention the names of the converts” (Frame).


Verse 3

Remembering (μνημονευοντεςmnēmoneuontes). Present active participle of old verb from adjective μνημωνmnēmōn (mindful) and so to call to mind, to be mindful of, used either with the accusative as in 1 Thessalonians 2:9 or the genitive as here.

Without ceasing (αδιαλειπτωςadialeiptōs). Double compound adverb of the Koiné{[28928]}š (Polybius, Diodorus, Strabo, papyri) from the verbal adjective αδιαλειπτοςȧdiȧleiptos (αa privative and διαλειπωdiȧleipō to leave off). In the N.T. alone by Paul and always connected with prayer. Milligan prefers to connect this adverb (amphibolous in position) with the preceding participle ποιουμενοιpoioumenoi rather than with μνημονευοντεςmnēmoneuontes as Revised Version and Westcott and Hort rightly do.

Your work of faith (υμων του εργου της πιστεωςhumōn tou ergou tēs pisteōs). Note article with both εργουergou and πιστεωςpisteōs (correlation of the article, both abstract substantives). ΕργουErgou is genitive case the object of μνημονευοντεςmnēmoneuontes as is common with verbs of emotion (Robertson, Grammar, pp. 508f.), though the accusative κοπονkopon occurs in 1 Thessalonians 2:9 according to common Greek idiom allowing either case. ΕργουErgou is the general term for work or business, employment, task. Note two genitives with εργουergou υμωνHumōn is the usual possessive genitive, your work, while της πιστεωςtēs pisteōs is the descriptive genitive, marked by, characterized by, faith, “the activity that faith inspires” (Frame). It is interesting to note this sharp conjunction of these two words by Paul. We are justified by faith, but faith produces works (Romans 6-8) as the Baptist taught and as Jesus taught and as James does in James 2.

Labour of love (του κοπου της αγαπηςtou kopou tēs agapēs). Note article with both substantives. Here again του κοπουtou kopou is the genitive the object of μνημονευοντεςmnēmoneuontes while της αγαπηςtēs agapēs is the descriptive genitive characterizing the “labour” or “toil” more exactly. ΚοποςKopos is from κοπτωkoptō to cut, to lash, to beat the bread, to toil. In Revelation 14:13 the distinction is drawn between κοπουkopou (toil) from which the saints rest and εργαerga (works, activities) which follow with them into heaven. So here it is the labour that love prompts, assuming gladly the toil. ΑγαπηAgapē is one of the great words of the N.T. (Milligan) and no certain example has yet been found in the early papyri or the inscriptions. It occurs in the Septuagint in the higher sense as with the sensuous associations. The Epistle of Aristeas calls love (αγαπηagapē) God‘s gift and Philo uses αγαπηagapē in describing love for God. “When Christianity first began to think and speak in Greek, it took up αγαπηagapē and its group of terms more freely, investing them with the new glow with which the N.T. writings make us familiar, a content which is invariably religious” (Moffatt, Love in the New Testament, p. 40). The New Testament never uses the word ερωςerōs (lust).

Patience of hope (της υπομονης της ελπιδοςtēs hupomonēs tēs elpidos). Note the two articles again and the descriptive genitive της ελπιδοςtēs elpidos It is patience marked by hope, “the endurance inspired by hope” (Frame), yes, and sustained by hope in spite of delays and set-backs. υπομονηHupomonē is an old word (υπο μενωhupoαγαπηmenō to remain under), but it “has come like εργου κοποσ υπομονηagapē to be closely associated with a distinctively Christian virtue” (Milligan). The same order as here του Κυριου ημων Ιησου Χριστουergouελπιδοςkoposεμπροστεν του τεου και πατρος ημωνhupomone4) appears in Revelation 2:2 and Lightfoot considers it” an ascending scale as practical proofs of self-sacrifice.” The church in Thessalonica was not old, but already they were called upon to exercise the sanctifying grace of hope (Denney).

In our Lord Jesus Christ (ελπιδοςtou Kuriou hēmōn Iēsou Christou). The objective genitive with Εμπροστενelpidos (hope) and so translated by “in” here (Robertson, Grammar, pp. 499f.). Jesus is the object of this hope, the hope of his second coming which is still open to us. Note “Lord Jesus Christ” as in 1 Thessalonians 1:1.

Before our God and Father (emprosthen tou theou kai patros hēmōn). The one article with both substantives precisely as in Galatians 1:4, not “before God and our Father,” both article and possessive genitive going with both substantives as in 2 Peter 1:1, 2 Peter 1:11; Titus 2:13 (Robertson, Grammar, pp. 785f.). The phrase is probably connected with elpidos Emprosthen in the N.T. occurs only of place, but it is common in the papyri of time. The picture here is the day of judgment when all shall appear before God.


Verse 4

Knowing (ειδοτεςeidotes). Second perfect active participle of οιδαoida (ειδονeidon), a so-called causal participle=since we know, the third participle with the principal verb ευχαριστουμενeucharistoumen the Greek being fond of the circumstantial participle and lengthening sentences thereby (Robertson, Grammar, P. 1128).

Beloved by God (ηγαπημενοι υπο του τεουēgapēmenoi hupo ̣toǔ theou). Perfect passive participle of αγαπαωagapaō the verb so common in the N.T. for the highest kind of love. Paul is not content with the use of αδελποιadelphoi here (often in this Epistle as 1 Thessalonians 2:1, 1 Thessalonians 2:14, 1 Thessalonians 2:17; 1 Thessalonians 3:7; 1 Thessalonians 4:1, 1 Thessalonians 4:10), but adds this affectionate phrase nowhere else in the N.T. in this form (cf. Judges 1:3) though in Sirach 45:1 and on the Rosetta Stone. But in 2 Thessalonians 2:13 he quotes “beloved by the Lord” from Deuteronomy 33:12. The use of αδελποιadelphoi for members of the same brotherhood can be derived from the Jewish custom (Acts 2:29, Acts 2:37) and the habit of Jesus (Matthew 12:48) and is amply illustrated in the papyri for burial clubs and other orders and guilds (Moulton and Milligan‘s Vocabulary).

Your election (την εκλογην υμωνtēn eklogēn humōn). That is the election of you by God. It is an old word from εκλεγομαιeklegomai used by Jesus of his choice of the twelve disciples (John 15:16) and by Paul of God‘s eternal selection (Ephesians 1:4). The word εκλογηeklogē is not in the lxx and only seven times in the N.T. and always of God‘s choice of men (Acts 9:15; 1 Thessalonians 1:4; Romans 9:11; Romans 11:5, Romans 11:7, Romans 11:8; 2 Peter 1:10). The divine εκλογηeklogē was manifested in the Christian qualities of 1 Thessalonians 1:3 (Moffatt).


Verse 5

How that (οτιhoti). It is not certain whether οτιhoti here means “because” (θυιαquia) as in 2 Thessalonians 3:7; 1 Corinthians 2:14; Romans 8:27 or declarative οτιhoti “how that,” knowing the circumstances of your election (Lightfoot) or explanatory, as in Acts 16:3; 1 Thessalonians 2:1; 1 Corinthians 16:15; 2 Corinthians 12:3.; Romans 13:11.

Our gospel (το ευαγγελιον ημωνto euaggelion hēmōn). The gospel (see Matthew 4:23; note on Mark 1:1 and Mark 1:15 for ευαγγελιονeuaggelion) which we preach, Paul‘s phrase also in 2 Thessalonians 2:14; 2 Corinthians 4:3; Romans 2:16; Romans 16:25; 2 Timothy 2:8. Paul had a definite, clear-cut message of grace that he preached everywhere including Thessalonica. This message is to be interpreted in the light of Paul‘s own sermons in Acts and Epistles, not by reading backward into them the later perversions of Gnostics and sacramentarians. This very word was later applied to the books about Jesus, but Paul is not so using the term here or anywhere else. In its origin Paul‘s gospel is of God (1 Thessalonians 2:2, 1 Thessalonians 2:8, 1 Thessalonians 2:9), in its substance it is Christ‘s (1 Thessalonians 3:2; 2 Thessalonians 1:8), and Paul is only the bearer of it (1 Thessalonians 2:4, 1 Thessalonians 2:9; 2 Thessalonians 2:14) as Milligan points out. Paul and his associates have been entrusted with this gospel (1 Thessalonians 2:4) and preach it (Galatians 2:2). Elsewhere Paul calls it God‘s gospel (2 Corinthians 11:7; Romans 1:1; Romans 15:16) or Christ‘s (1 Corinthians 9:12; 2 Corinthians 2:12; 2 Corinthians 9:13; 2 Corinthians 10:14; Galatians 1:7; Romans 15:19; Philemon 1:27). In both instances it is the subjective genitive.

Came unto you (εγενητη εις υμαςegenēthē eis humās). First aorist passive indicative of γινομαιginomai in practically same sense as εγενετοegeneto (second aorist middle indicative as in the late Greek generally). So also εις υμαςeis humās like the Koiné{[28928]}š is little more than the dative υμινhumin (Robertson, Grammar, p. 594).

Not only - but also (ουκμονον αλλα καιouk- λογοςmononδυναμιςalla kai). Sharp contrast, negatively and positively. The contrast between δυναμιςlogos (word) and εν πνευματι αγιωι και πληροποριαι πολληιdunamis (power) is seen also in 1 Corinthians 2:4; 1 Corinthians 4:20. Paul does not refer to miracles by ενdunamis

In the Holy Spirit and much assurance (λογωι δυναμειen pneumati hagiōi kai plērophoriāi pollēi). Preposition πληροποριαιen repeated with πληροπορεωlogōiκατως οιδατεdunamei but only once here thus uniting closely

Holy Spirit and much assurance. No article with either word. The word οιοι εγενητημεν υμινplērophoriāi is not found in ancient Greek or the lxx. It appears once in Clement of Rome and one broken papyrus example. For the verb οιοιplērophoreō see note on Luke 1:1. The substantive in the N.T. only here and Colossians 2:2; Hebrews 6:11; Hebrews 10:22. It means the full confidence which comes from the Holy Spirit.

Even as ye know (υμινkathōs oidate). Paul appeals to the Thessalonians themselves as witnesses to the character of his preaching and life among them.

What manner of men we showed ourselves toward you (εγενητημενhoioi egenēthēmen humin). Literally, What sort of men we became to you. Qualitative relative ημεταhoioi and dative δι υμαςhumin and first aorist passive indicative egenēthēmen (not ēmetha we were). An epexegetical comment with for your sake (di' humās) added. It was all in their interest and for their advantage, however it may have seemed otherwise at the time.


Verse 6

Imitators of us and of the Lord (μιμηται ημων και του κυριουmimētai hēmōn kai tou kuriou). ΜιμητηςMimētēs (της̇tēs expresses the agent) is from μιμεομαιmimeomai to imitate and that from μιμοςmimos (μιμιχmimic actor). Old word, more than “followers,” in the N.T. only six times (1 Thessalonians 1:6; 1 Thessalonians 2:14; 1 Corinthians 4:16; 1 Corinthians 11:1; Ephesians 5:1; Hebrews 6:12). Again Paul uses γινομαιginomai to become, not ειμιeimi to be. It is a daring thing to expect people to “imitate” the preacher, but Paul adds “and of the Lord,” for he only expected or desired “imitation” as he himself imitated the Lord Jesus, as he expressly says in 1 Corinthians 11:1. The peril of it all is that people so easily and so readily imitate the preacher when he does not imitate the Lord. The fact of the “election” of the Thessalonians was shown by the character of the message given them and by this sincere acceptance of it (Lightfoot).

Having received the word (δεχαμενοι τον λογονdexamenoi ton logon). First aorist middle participle of δεχομαιdechomai probably simultaneous action (receiving), not antecedent.

In much affliction (εν τλιπσει πολληιen thlipsei pollēi). Late word, pressure. Tribulation (Latin tribulum) from τλιβωthlibō to press hard on. Christianity has glorified this word. It occurs in some Christian papyrus letters in this same sense. Runs all through the N.T. (2 Thessalonians 1:4; Romans 5:3). Paul had his share of them (Colossians 1:24; 2 Corinthians 2:4) and so he understands how to sympathize with the Thessalonians (1 Thessalonians 3:3.). They suffered after Paul left Thessalonica (1 Thessalonians 2:14).

With joy of the Holy Spirit (μετα χαρας πνευματος αγιουmeta charas pneumatos hagiou). The Holy Spirit gives the joy in the midst of the tribulations as Paul learned (Romans 5:3). “This paradox of experience” (Moffatt) shines along the pathway of martyrs and saints of Christ.


Verse 7

So that ye became (ωστε γενεσται υμαςhōste genesthai humas). Definite result expressed by ωστεhōste and the infinitive γενεσταιgenesthai (second aorist middle of γινομαιginomai) as is common in the Koiné.

An ensample (τυπονtupon). So B D, but Aleph A C have τυπουςtupous (plural). The singular looks at the church as a whole, the plural as individuals like υμαςhumās ΤυποςTupos is an old word from τυπτωtuptō to strike, and so the mark of a blow, print as in John 20:25. Then the figure formed by the blow, image as in Acts 7:43. Then the mould or form (Romans 6:17; Acts 23:25). Then an example or pattern as in Acts 7:44, to be imitated as here, Philemon 3:17, etc. It was a great compliment for the church in Thessalonica to be already a model for believers in Macedonia and Achaia. Our word type for printers is this same word with one of its meanings. Note separate article with both Macedonia (τηι Μακεδονιαιtēi Makedoniāi) and Achaia (τηι Αχαιαιtēi Achaiāi) treated as separate provinces as they were.


Verse 8

From you hath sounded forth (απ υμων εχηχηταιaph' humōn exēchētai). Perfect passive indicative of εχηχεωexēcheō late compound verb (εχ ηχοσ ηχω ηχηexλογος του Κυριουēchosαλλ εν παντι τοπωιēchōη πιστις υμων η προς τον τεονēchē our echo) to sound out of a trumpet or of thunder, to reverberate like our echo. Nowhere else in the N.T. So “from you” as a sounding board or radio transmitting station (to use a modern figure). It marks forcibly “both the clear and the persuasive nature of the εχεληλυτενlogos tou Kuriou ” (Ellicott). This phrase, the word of the Lord, may be subjective with the Lord as its author or objective with the Lord as the object. It is both. It is a graphic picture with a pardonable touch of hyperbole (Moffatt) for Thessalonica was a great commercial and political centre for disseminating the news of salvation (on the Egnation Way).

But in every place (εχερχομαιall' en panti topōi). In contrast to Macedonia and Achaia. The sentence would naturally stop here, but Paul is dictating rapidly and earnestly and goes on.

Your faith to God-ward (εχηχηταιhē pistis humōn hē pros ton theon). Literally, the faith of you that toward the God. The repeated article makes clear that their faith is now directed toward the true God and not toward the idols from which they had turned (1 Thessalonians 1:10).

Is gone forth (ωστε μη χρειαν εχειν ημας λαλειν τιexelēluthen). Second perfect active indicative of old verb ωστεexerchomai to go out, state of completion like λαλεινexēchētai above.

So that we need not to speak anything (λεγεινhōste mē chreian echein hēmās lalein ti). Hōste with the infinitive for actual result as in 1 Thessalonians 1:7. No vital distinction between lalein (originally to chatter as of birds) and legein both being used in the Koiné{[28928]}š for speaking and preaching (in the N.T.).


Verse 9

They themselves (αυτοιautoi). The men of Macedonia, voluntarily.

Report (απαγγελλουσινapaggellousin). Linear present active indicative, keep on reporting.

What manner of entering in (οποιαν εισοδονhopoian eisodon). What sort of entrance, qualitative relative in an indirect question.

We had (εσχομενeschomen). Second aorist active (ingressive) indicative of the common verb εχωechō

And how (και πωςkai pōs). Here the interrogative adverb πωςpōs in this part of the indirect question. This part about “them” (you) as the first part about Paul. The verb επιστρεπωepistrephō is an old verb for turning and is common in the Acts for Gentiles turning to God, as here from idols, though not by Paul again in this sense. In Galatians 4:9 Paul uses it for turning to the weak and beggarly elements of Judaism.

From idols (απο των ειδολωνapo tōn eidolōn). Old word from ειδοςeidos (figure) for image or likeness and then for the image of a heathen god (our idol). Common in the lxx in this sense. In Acts 14:15 Paul at Lystra urged the people to turn from these vain things to the living God (απο τουτων των ματαιων επιστρεπειν επι τεον ζωνταapo toutōn tōn mataiōn epistrephein epi theon zōnta), using the same verb επιστρεπεινepistrephein Here also Paul has a like idea, to serve a living and true God (δουλευειν τεωι ζωντι και αλητινωιdouleuein theōi zōnti kai alēthinōi). No article, it is true, but should be translated “the living and true God” (cf. Acts 14:15). Not “dead” like the idols from which they turned, but alive and genuine (αλητινοςalēthinos not αλητηςalēthēs).


Verse 10

To wait for his Son from heaven (αναμενειν τον υιον αυτου εκ των ουρανωνanamenein ton huion autou ek tōn ouranōn). Present infinitive, like δουλευεινdouleuein and so linear, to keep on waiting for. The hope of the second coming of Christ was real and powerful with Paul as it should be with us. It was subject to abuse then as now as Paul will have to show in this very letter. He alludes to this hope at the close of each chapter in this Epistle.

Whom he raised from the dead (ον ηγειρεν εκ των νεκρωνhon ēgeiren ek ̣tōň nekrōn). Paul gloried in the fact of the resurrection of Jesus from the dead of which fact he was himself a personal witness. This fact is the foundation stone for all his theology and it comes out in this first chapter.

Jesus which delivereth us from the wrath to come (Ιησουν τον ρυομενον ημας εκ της οργης της ερχομενηςIēsoun ton ruomenon hēmās ek tēs orgēs tēs erchomenēs). It is the historic, crucified, risen, and ascended Jesus Christ, God‘s Son, who delivers from the coming wrath. He is our Saviour (Matthew 1:21) true to his name Jesus. He is our Rescuer (Romans 11:26, ο ρυομενοςho ruomenos from Isaiah 59:20). It is eschatological language, this coming wrath of God for sin (1 Thessalonians 2:16; Romans 3:5; Romans 5:9; Romans 9:22; Romans 13:5). It was Paul‘s allusion to the day of judgment with Jesus as Judge whom God had raised from the dead that made the Athenians mock and leave him (Acts 17:31.). But Paul did not change his belief or his preaching because of the conduct of the Athenians. He is certain that God‘s wrath in due time will punish sin. Surely this is a needed lesson for our day. It was coming then and it is coming now.

 


Copyright Statement
The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)

Bibliography Information
Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on 1 Thessalonians 1:4". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/1-thessalonians-1.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

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