1 Thessalonians
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The City of Thessalonica. It was founded by Cassander, King of Macedon 315 B. C., and was about a hundred miles west of Philippi. It was a great commercial center of Paul's time, the inhabitants being Greeks, Romans and Jews. It still exists under the name of Saloniki, and has a population of from 75,000 to 85,000 about half of whom are Jews.

The Church of Thessalonica. Upon being delivered from prison at Philippi. Paul continued his second missionary journey to Thessalonica, having also Silas and Timothy with him (Acts 17:1-5). He spent three Sabbaths there, but on account of the persecution of the Jews, went from there to Berea, then to Athens, and then to Corinth where he spent 18 months. The first letter bears testimony to the splendid Christian character of these new converts from heathenism.

First Thessalonians.

This is probably the first epistle written by Paul and perhaps the first written document of the Christian religion. It is not doctrinal, has no element of controversy and is one of the most gentle and affectionate of Paul's letters. It is notable for its special salutations and refers to their expectations of the immediate return of Jesus. Its main idea is consolation (4:17-18), its keynote hope and its leading words affliction and advent. Its purpose was: (1) to send affectionate greetings, (2) to console them in their afflictions, (3) to correct their wrong, their mistaken views of Christ's second coming, (4) to exhort then to proper living as against certain immoral tendencies.

Date. From Corinth A. D. 53.


I. The Spiritual Condition of the Church, Ch. 1.

1. Introduction. 1.

2. Their faith, love and hope, 2-3.

3. The cause of these, 4-5.

4. The result of these, 6-10.

II. Paul's Character and Conduct While With Them, 2:1-16.

1. How he brought them the gospel, 1-12.

2. How they received it, 13-16.

III. Paul's Interest in the Church Since Leaving Them. 2:17-3 end.

1. Desired to visit them, 2:17 end.

2. He sent Timothy to them and rejoices in his report of them, 3:1-10.

3. Benediction upon them, 3:11 end.

IV. Exhortation for the Future, 4:1-5:11.

1. To purity, 4:1-8.

2. To brotherly love, 4:9-10.

3. To honest industry, 4:11-12.

4. To be comforted in the loss of their dead in Christ, 4:13-5:11.

Conclusion, 5:12.

For Study and Discussion. (1) Things in the church for which Paul isthankful, 1:2-6. (2) What is said about how the gospel was preached to them, 2:1-16. (3) Paul's longing to know about them, 3:1-9. (4) The duties enjoined, 4:1-12. (5) The second coming of Christ and the resurrection, 4:13-18. (6) How we are prepared for the great day of his coming, 5:3-10. (7) The several exhortations in 5:12-22. (8) The human elements or explanation of Paul's power as a preacher Ch. 2. (9) The deity of Jesus seen in the book.

For the Outline Study of the Bible by Books by J.B. TIDELL, A.M., D.D. Professor of Biblical Literature in Baylor University, Waco, Texas
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