Scriptures

Complete Study of 2 Thessalonians

Introduction

For the background information, date time, author etc. please go to study of 1 Thessalonians.

“Paul, Silas and Timothy, To the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ”. 2 Thessalonians 1:1 (NIV)

As we saw in our introduction to the Thessalonian letters, 1 Thessalonians was written shortly after the establishment of the church in Thessalonica, Acts 17:1-9, around 50-52 A.D. We also saw that the coming of Christ was mentioned in each chapter. The second letter appears to have been written just a few months, perhaps a year later whilst Paul was in Corinth.

We know that he stayed in Corinth eighteen months, Acts 18:11 and so it is possible for Paul to have written the first letter at the beginning of his stay, and written the second letter toward the end of his stay, around 53 A.D.

2 Thessalonians contains three short chapters and again the theme of the return of the Christ runs throughout. After reading through 2 Thessalonians you would have noticed that the church in Thessalonica seemed to remain strong in the Lord despite the persecution they were receiving, 2 Thessalonians 1:3-4, even though there was a lot of misunderstanding concerning Jesus return.

There were some who were troubled by false reports concerning the Lord’s return, 2 Thessalonians 2:1-2 and there were other members who simply thought that Jesus’ return was so imminent, they actually stopped working because they thought they didn’t have to work anymore, 2 Thessalonians 3:11-12.

Paul wanted to encourage the saints in a time of persecution whilst also warning them about the many false conceptions concerning the Lord’s return and so inform the church on what they should do in terms of discipline, about those who refuse to work.

“Grace and peace to you from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ”. 2 Thessalonians 1:2 NIV

As Paul wrote in 1 Thessalonians and in most of his letters, along with much more, grace and peace are what a Christian has when they are in Christ. χάρις ‘charis’ which is the Greek word for ‘grace’ is that unmerited favour which we receive from God; it cannot be earned, deserved or merited. As we don’t have anything to pay for it, it is a gift from God. Grace is God’s active favour by which he bestows his greatest gift on those who deserve the greatest punishment. Remember grace isn’t just about saving us, grace also sustains us.

εἰρήνη ‘eirene’ is the Greek word for ‘peace’, in Hebrew it would be ‘shalom,’ is what all Christians have because of that grace which God gives us. It means a lot more than just being in the absence of trouble of our lives although that would be included, it also means being at peace within ourselves, with God and our fellow man.

Remember that grace and peace both come from God and cannot be found anywhere else. 1 Peter 5:10 reminds us that God is the Father of grace and Hebrews 13:20 reminds us that God is a God of peace.

We know that grace and truth are from Christ according to John 1:17 and Jesus Himself is our peace according to Ephesians 2:14. As Paul writes ‘from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ’, he reminds us again that grace and peace ultimately come from God above.

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Complete Study of 2 Thessalonians  

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"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God."

John 1:1

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