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1 Thessalonians 1

November 8, 2008 Leave a comment

Chapter Analysis of I Thessalonians 1

Passage Description


vv.1-3 We [Paul, Silas, and Timothy] remember you fondly in our prayers
vv.4-10 You [Thessalonian Church] are a model of what it means to be Christ’s Church

Verse-by-Verse Analysis


(vs) Observation (vs) Question & Answer (vs) Cross-References
(1) Typical greeting (1) Does Paul share authorship in any of his other letters? Yes. (1) I Corinthians w/ Sosthenes; II Corinthians, Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon w/ Timothy; II Thessalonians, like I Thessalonians, also w/ Silas and Timothy; Galatians w/ “all the brothers with me” (v.2)
(2) Paul prays regularly for the churches he’s planted
(3) Faith –> Work
Love –> Labor
Hope –> Endurance
(3) What’s the difference between work and labor?
(4) Paul “knows” the Thessalonians have been chosen by God (4) How does Paul know this? What evidence does he provide? See (5)’s observation.
(5) The Thessalonians’ response to the gospel included power, the Holy Spirit, and deep conviciton
(6) By responding to severe suffering with the Holy Spirit’s joy, the Thessalonians imitated Paul, Silas, Timothy, and Christ (6) How do Christians today receive this supernatual joy of the Holy Spirit? (6) II Corinthians 6:4-10 The Holy Spirit often acts in times of great distress
(7,8) The Thessalonians are a model to believers throughout Greece (7,8) What qualifies a church to be a model to believers throughout Monroe County today? (7,8) Matthew 16:15-18 The church is built upon Peter’s profession of faith in Jesus
Ephesians 2:19-22 Jesus is the church’s chief cornerstone; its foundation is made of apostles and prophets.
NIV Study Bible note on Ephesians 2:22: “The church is to be a people or community in whom the Holy Spirit dwells” (p.1794).
(9) Other Grecian believers are well aware of the Thessalonians’ success (9) Is reputation among other churches still a reasonable measure of the health of a congregation? Only with respect to Paul’s analysis of the Thessalonian church in vv.5-6,9-10
(10) Thessalonians wait for Jesus (10) How does a person wait for Jesus? Negative Example: Waiting for Godot

Key Term

Greek ekklesia: “church, congregation, assembly; a group of people gathered together. It can refer to the OT assembly of believers (Ac 7:38), or a riotous mob (Ac 19:32), but usually to a Christian assembly, a church, as a totality (Eph 3:10), or in a specific locale (Col. 4:15). In the NT a church is never a building or meeting place” (emphasis mine). (Zondervan NIV Exhaustive Concordance, Greek to English Dictionary and Index: 1711)

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Categories: 1 thessalonians, bible

Overview of 1 Thessalonians

November 8, 2008 Leave a comment

Overview of I Thessalonians

Chapter 1 Way to go, Thessalonians!
Chapter 2 I’m OK [Paul], You’re OK [Thessalonian Church]
Chapter 3 Live Life with Godly Restraint
Chapter 4A Timothy’s Visit and Good Report
Chapters 4B-5A Meet the Lord in the Air, Who Cares When?
Chapter 5B Paul’s Fortune Cookie Christian Thoughts

Principal Personalities


Paul

Silas (I’m especially intrigued by Silas. Who is he? How did he get involed with both Paul and Peter’s mnistries? Why and how did Silas end up with Peter after Paul, not before? The book of Acts emphasizes their ministries in opposite this chronological order.)

Timothy


Geography


Achaia

Macedonia

Thessalonica: 200,000 residents, capital city of Rome’s Macedonian province, excellent natural harbor, on an important trade route

Purpose

Paul had planted a church in Thessalonica that experienced amazing initial growth. After he left, Jews and Gentiles bad-mouthed Paul. Additionally, the Thessalonian Church was worried about believers who died before the Day of the Lord. Paul wrote in response to these points of confusion.

Themes

Live like the Lord may come today, even though he might wait until you’re long “asleep” [dead]

Thessalonian Church, continue to be a model to believers everywhere!

Key Verse and Application

I Thessalonians 5:15 “Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but try to be kind to one another and to everyone else” (NIV).

I take a “get even” approach to life. Jesus says to “turn the other cheek.” I don’t do this consistently. I justify my sinful responses by saying, “It’s their fault. They provoked this response in me.” I don’t want to “pay back wrong for wrong.” Often, the other person’s “wrong” against me is only in my imagination anyway.

The next time I feel the urge to “pay back wrong” I’ll pray for the Holy Spirit to intervene.

Key Term

eschatology–“[Wrong] attitudes have been encouraged by the separation of eschatology from the rest of Christian life and doctrine. If the ‘last things’ have been occurring since Jesus’ time, they must be far more relevant to the main themes of Christian activity and thought” (p. 436, Holmann Bible Dictionary).

Categories: 1 thessalonians, bible, outline
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