First letter to the Thessalonians. It is the oldest that has been preserved of Pablo . Most likely, it was written around the 1950s.
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- 1 History
- 2 Contents
- 3 Outline of the letter
- 4 Sources
The city of Thessalonica, located in the northern part of present-day Greece , was the capital of the province of Macedonia .
Paul founded the church of Thessalonica on his second missionary journey, after founding that of Philippi (Acts 17. 1-8). He then visited other cities until he reached Corinth (Acts 17.10-18.18). He had wanted to return to Thessalonica, to continue his apostolic work, but due to some inconvenience he could not do it. From Athens he then sent Timothy, his collaborator, to encourage the Christians of Thessalonica. When Paul was already in Corinth, Timothy returned and brought him good news about the situation in the church. The apostle then decided to write this letter to them, since at the moment he could not visit them personally.
The letter begins with an introduction that includes the customary greeting, in which Paul also mentions his collaborators Silvano and Timoteo (1.1). Immediately comes a thanksgiving to God for the Christian life of the community of Thessalonica (1.2-10).
The central part of the letter is divided into two sections:
The first section (2.1-3.13) refers to Paul’s work in Thessalonica. Remember how the gospel was preached to them and how they accepted it. He tells them of his wishes to visit them again and tells them of the joy he had when learning about the situation of the community through Timothy. End with a prayer to God.
The second section (4.1-5.24) is an exhortation to put into practice the demands of the gospel. In particular, he stops to give an instruction on what will become of those Christians who have already died (this refers to the death of renouncing his old life, running out of ideals or desires of his own, choosing a new life to be as God wants him to be). ) and about the attitude they should have while waiting for the Lord’s return (4.17-18).
The letter ends with a brief farewell (5.25-28).
Example from Thessalonians (1.2-10)
Paul’s Ministry at Thessalonica (2.1-16) ” ‘
Paul’s absence from the church (2.17-3.13)
The life that pleases God (4.1-12)
The coming of the Lord (4.13-5.11)
Paul exhorts the brothers (5.12-24)
Greetings and final blessing (5.25-28