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Bible Dictionaries

People's Dictionary of the Bible

Thessalonica

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Thessalonica (thĕs'sa-lo-nî'kah). A city of Macedonia. It was in Paul's time a free city of the Romans, the capital and most populous city in Macedonia. Paul and Silas, in a.d. 58, came to Thessalonica from Philippi, which was 100 miles northeast. For at least three Sabbaths the apostles preached to their countrymen. A church was gathered, principally composed of Gentiles. At length the persecution became so violent as to drive the apostles away. Paul desired to revisit the church there, and sent Timothy to minister to them. Among his converts were Caius, Aristarchus, Secundus, and perhaps Jason. Acts 17:1-13; Acts 20:4; Acts 27:2; comp. Philippians 4:16; 2 Timothy 4:10. Paul wrote two epistles to the Thessalonian church from Corinth. 1 Thessalonians 1:1; 2 Thessalonians 1:1. The "rulers" of the city, Acts 17:6; Acts 17:8, are called, in the original, "politarchs." This is a peculiar term, not elsewhere found in the New Testament, but this very word appears in the inscription on a triumphal arch believed to have been erected after the battle of Philippi. The names of seven politarchs are given. During several centuries Thessalonica was an important centre of Christianity in the oriental church, and from it the Bulgarians and Slavonians were reached. The population now is about 80,000, of whom 30,000 are Jews and 10,000 Greeks.

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Bibliography Information
Rice, Edwin Wilbur, DD. Entry for 'Thessalonica'. People's Dictionary of the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/rpd/t/thessalonica.html. 1893.

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