Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament
Wherefore when we could no longer forbear, we thought it good to be left at Athens alone;1 Thessalonians 3:1. Διὸ μηκέτι στέγοντες, wherefore no longer being able to forbear) This is resumed at 1 Thessalonians 3:5, as if after a parenthesis.—μόνοι, alone) Observe how highly Timothy was esteemed, since at Timothy’s departure Paul and Silas seemed to themselves to be alone, inasmuch as in a city altogether estranged from God. Comp. Ord. temp., p. 278 [Ed. 2, p. 239].
And sent Timotheus, our brother, and minister of God, and our fellowlabourer in the gospel of Christ, to establish you, and to comfort you concerning your faith:1 Thessalonians 3:2. Ἐπέμψαμεν, we sent) I and Sylvanus sent.
That no man should be moved by these afflictions: for yourselves know that we are appointed thereunto.1 Thessalonians 3:3. Σαίνεσθαι) [that no man should be moved,—seduced and cajoled out of his faith]: σαίνω from σέω, to move. Eustathius shows, that it is properly applied to dogs, when they fawn by wagging the tail; by metaphor ΕἸς ΤΟῪς ὙΠΟΎΛΟΙς ΚΑῚ ΚΟΛΑΚΙΚΟῪς, applied to those that are deceitful at heart and prone to flatter; and this is obviously the idea here. For in afflictions, relatives and opponents, and the heart itself, mingle their flatteries, and when these are overcome, believers are confirmed.—ταὺταις, in these (present) afflictions) The present time.—κείμεθα, we lie, i.e. are set, are appointed unto this) An argument from our calling: comp. ch. 1 Thessalonians 5:9, God ἔθετο, hath appointed us.
 So Latin ceveo in Persius; Th. cieo, to move or shake, as σαίνω from σέω, σείω.—ED.
For verily, when we were with you, we told you before that we should suffer tribulation; even as it came to pass, and ye know.
For this cause, when I could no longer forbear, I sent to know your faith, lest by some means the tempter have tempted you, and our labour be in vain.1 Thessalonians 3:5. Ὁ πειράζων, the tempter) i.e. Satan, ch. 1 Thessalonians 2:18. The expression contains an Euphemism. Often this enemy is near [lurks underneath] when one would not think that he is. Comp. at Matthew 4:3.
But now when Timotheus came from you unto us, and brought us good tidings of your faith and charity, and that ye have good remembrance of us always, desiring greatly to see us, as we also to see you:1 Thessalonians 3:6. Ἄρτι, now) Immediately after the arrival of Timothy, he writes these things with fresh joy and the most tender affection. Consonant with this is the εὐαγγελισαμένου, a striking participle.—ἐπιποθοῦντες, desiring greatly [having a yearning desire]) This is the sign of a good conscience.
Therefore, brethren, we were comforted over you in all our affliction and distress by your faith:1 Thessalonians 3:7. Διὰ τῆς—πίστεως, by—faith) Construe this with παρεκλήθημεν, we were comforted.
For now we live, if ye stand fast in the Lord.1 Thessalonians 3:8. Νῦν ζῶμεν, now we live) now we feel that we are alive. The form of testifying the highest joy; comp. Psalm 63:4.
For what thanks can we render to God again for you, for all the joy wherewith we joy for your sakes before our God;
Night and day praying exceedingly that we might see your face, and might perfect that which is lacking in your faith?1 Thessalonians 3:10. Νυκτὸς, night) Alluding to his holy thoughts during the night, 2 Timothy 1:3.—τὰ ὑστερήματα, the things which are wanting) [the deficiency, that which is lacking]. Even the Thessalonians had points in which they were in need of improvement.
Now God himself and our Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, direct our way unto you.1 Thessalonians 3:11. Αὐτὸς, Himself) Both epistles to the Thessalonians have almost all the several chapters singly sealed and distinguished by single breathings of prayer [each chapter sealed with its own prayer], ch. 1 Thessalonians 5:23; 2 Thessalonians 1:11; 2 Thessalonians 2:16; 2 Thessalonians 3:5; 2 Thessalonians 3:16.—Ἰησοῦς, Jesus) Prayers and vows are also addressed to Jesus Christ; for the word κατευθύναι, direct, extends both to Him [as the subject] and to the Father: comp. 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17.
And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you:1 Thessalonians 3:12. Ὑμᾶς, you) whether we come or not.—πλεονάσαι καὶ περισσεύσαη) On the difference between these two words, comp. 2 Corinthians 4:15, note.—καὶ ἡμεῖς, even we) namely, even as we are full of love [towards you].
 πλεονάζω has a positive force: περισσεύω, the force of a comparative: The Lord make you full and even abound.—ED.
To the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.1 Thessalonians 3:13. Μετὰ, with) Construe with ἐν τῇ παρουσίᾳ, at the coming; comp. 2 Thessalonians 1:7.—πάντων τῶν ἁγίων, with all the saints) This phrase comprehends angels and the elect of the earth.—αὐτοῦ, His) Christ’s, Acts 9:13.