Summary 1 Thessalonians Chapter 4

Summary for Ch 4:1-8

 This is chock-a-block full of all sorts of very significant issues.

  • Moral code
  • Debauchery tirade; brought up, dropped, brought up again.
  • Debauchery seems to be the point Paul most likes to emphasize, and where he got this from is difficult to say.  As a Pharisee?  From John the Baptist? Neither seems likely.
  • Holiness is equated with refraining from debauchery.  A fairly narrow definition.  It almost seems like, once he hits the topic, he goes off on a rant.
  • Social justice: don’t take more than your share
  •  Especially: Paul got his instructions directly from Jesus.  The point is almost lost among all the fulminating against debauchery, but it may be the most significant point in these 8 verses.

Summary Ch 4:9-18

  • Brotherly love that is God-taught.  Whatever that means.
  • “Strive to be quiet”, or “be quiet to strive for honour”?  They are not entirely the same thing.  Which is the action, and which is the result?
  • Zen moment.
  • The Dead. The Parousia.
  • Jesus rose, or God raised Jesus?  1:9 vs. 4:14.
  • Apocalyptic imagery.  Jesus coming from the sky. Angels with trumpets, joining Jesus on the clouds.  The dead will rise—how does this affect Jesus rising in V-14?
  • From the sky
  • Into the clouds
  • Parousia—is it imminent?
  • Pastoral message of love

About James, brother of Jesus

I have a BA from the University of Toronto in Greek and Roman History. For this, I had to learn classical Greek and Latin. In seminar-style classes, we discussed both the meaning of the text and the language. U of T has a great Classics Dept. One of the professors I took a Senior Seminar with is now at Harvard. I started reading the New Testament as a way to brush up on my Greek, and the process grew into this. I plan to comment on as much of the NT as possible, starting with some of Paul's letters. After that, I'll start in on the Gospels, starting with Mark.

Posted on July 31, 2012, in 1 Thessalonians, epistles, Paul's Letters, Summary and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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