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Bible Commentaries

Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures

1 Thessalonians 5

Verses 1-10

The Second Coming of Christ In 1 Thessalonians 5:1-10 Paul teaches the Thessalonians that in order to be ready for the Rapture they must prepare themselves for Christ’s Second Coming. He explains how this event will be sudden for the world (1 Thessalonians 5:1-3), but can be anticipated if they are alert by walking in the three-fold aspect of their sanctification in faith, love and hope that is emphasized in this epistle (1 Thessalonians 5:4-8). God’s wrath is not designed for His children (1 Thessalonians 5:9-10).

Note how Paul calls the event of Christ’s Return the “Day of the Lord.”

1 Thessalonians 5:2 Comment - The phrase “the Day of the Lord” refers to the time period in which the Lord Jesus Christ will reign on earth from Jerusalem over all mankind. Compare a similar usage of the word “day” in Isaiah 1:1, where the period of each king’s reign was referred to as “the day of Uzziah,” etc.

Isaiah 1:1, “The vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz, which he saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah.”

Paul picks up this subject again in 2 Thessalonians 2:0 by using the phrases “the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ” and “the day of Christ.”

2 Thessalonians 2:1-2, “Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ , and by our gathering together unto him, That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.”

Scripture References There are a number of Scriptures that refer to Jesus Christ coming as a thief in the night (Matthew 24:43-44, 1 Thessalonians 5:2, 2 Peter 3:10, Revelation 3:3; Revelation 16:15).

Matthew 24:43-44, “But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.”

1 Thessalonians 5:2, “For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.”

2 Peter 3:10, “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.”

Revelation 3:3, “Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.”

Revelation 16:15, “Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.”

1 Thessalonians 5:1-2 Comment The Second Coming of Jesus Christ - The Paul knew full well the final words of the Lord Jesus Christ just before He ascended to Heaven, when He said that no man knows the times and the seasons except the Father (Acts 1:7). Therefore, Paul is telling them to be ready for His return at any time.

Acts 1:7, “And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.”

1 Thessalonians 5:7 Word Study on “drunken” Strong says the Greek word “drunken” ( μεθύσκω ) (G3182) mean, “to intoxicate.” Vine says this Greek word describes the process or state of becoming μεθύω (G3184), which means, “to drink to intoxication.” ( Strong) The Enhanced Strong says this word is used three times in the New Testament, being translated in the KJV as, “be drunken 2, drunk 1.” Each use of the word is in reference to being intoxicated with alcohol (Luke 12:45, Ephesians 5:8, 1 Thessalonians 5:7).

Luke 12:45, “But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken;”

Ephesians 5:18, “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;”

1 Thessalonians 5:7, “For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.”

1 Thessalonians 5:8 Comments - We have seen the three words faith, love, and hope used in the opening of this epistle as it refers to the process of our election (1 Thessalonians 1:3-4).

1 Thessalonians 5:9 “For God hath not appointed us to wrath” - Comments - Just as God has appointed evil doers to His divine wrath (1 Thessalonians 2:16), He has appointed His children to avoid this wrath.

1 Thessalonians 2:16, “Forbidding us to speak to the Gentiles that they might be saved, to fill up their sins alway: for the wrath is come upon them to the uttermost.”

1 Thessalonians 5:9 “but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ” - Comments - The quote from Enoch in the epistle of Jude reveals to us the earliest revelation of the Day of the Lord, or the Second Coming of Jesus Christ.

Jude 1:14-15, “And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”

God revealed to Enoch in a vision of the night the things that were coming upon the earth in the last days. This verse tells us that the major end-time event that Enoch uses to summarize a group of events is the Second Coming of Jesus, which occurs at the end of the tribulation period. The underlying theme of all of these end-time events is the return of Christ to judge the sinner and glorify the saints. When speaking of the Day of the Lord, Paul says, “For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,” (1 Thessalonians 5:9). Therefore, this is a glorious time for the children of God and not a time to fear. It is a time of fear and terror for the sinner, but a time of retribution for those who have suffered for righteousness’ sake. The Second Coming of Christ is the “climax” of a series of events that Jesus Christ spoke of in Matthew 24-25.

1 Thessalonians 5:10 “whether we wake or sleep” Comments - That is, whether we are alive or dead at Jesus’ second coming.

Verses 1-11

The Sanctification of Man’s Mind: Patience of Hope in the Father’s Plan The third aspect of our sanctification will be man’s mind in which dwells our hope, which is the anchor of the soul. Paul places emphasis upon this aspect in 1 Thessalonians 4:13 to 1 Thessalonians 5:11. In 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 he encourages the Thessalonians by instilling a hope of seeing their loved ones again as he discusses one of the clearest passages in the Scriptures on the Rapture of the Church (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). In 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11 he then teaches them that in order to be ready for the Rapture they must prepare themselves for Christ’s Second Coming (1 Thessalonians 5:1-11). He explains how this event will be sudden for the world (1 Thessalonians 5:1-3), but can be anticipated if they are alert by walking in the three-fold aspect of their sanctification in faith, love and hope that is emphasized in this epistle (1 Thessalonians 5:4-8). God’s wrath is not designed for His children (1 Thessalonians 5:9-10). Paul closes this passage in 1 Thessalonians 4:13 to 1 Thessalonians 5:11 by exhorting the believers to comfort one another with these words of hope (1 Thessalonians 5:11).

It is important to note that Paul will refer back to this two-fold teaching of the Second Coming in his second epistle to them by saying “by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him.” (2 Thessalonians 2:1)

While 1 Thessalonians places more emphasis upon the Rapture of the Church preceding the Tribulation Period, the second epistle places more on Christ’s Second Coming at the end of the Tribulation Period. But these events are placed before us in these two epistles as the goal of our sanctification.

Outline Here is a proposed outline:

1. The Rapture 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

2. The Second Coming of Christ 1 Thessalonians 5:1-10

Verses 1-24

The Sanctification of the Believer - After opening his first epistle to the Thessalonians with a brief Salutation (1 Thessalonians 1:1), and after introducing the work of divine election in the lives of the Thessalonians from the perspective of the Holy Spirit (1 Thessalonians 1:2-10), Paul spends the entire body of the letter fully developing the three-fold aspect of divine election. He discusses the role of the Holy Spirit in sanctifying the believer by explaining the process of that a person goes through in order to be fully sanctified, spirit, soul and body (1 Thessalonians 5:23).

Outline - Note the proposed outline:

A. Sanctification of Man’s Spirit 1 Thessalonians 2:1 to 1 Thessalonians 3:13

B. Sanctification of Man’s Body 1 Thessalonians 4:1-12

C. Sanctification of Man’s Mind 1 Thessalonians 4:13 to 1 Thessalonians 5:11

1. The Rapture of the Church 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

2. The Day of the Lord 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11

D. Commending Them Unto Their Leaders 1 Thessalonians 5:12-13

Verse 11

Closing Exhortation - Paul closes this passage in 1 Thessalonians 4:13 to 1 Thessalonians 5:11 by exhorting the believers to comfort one another with these words of hope (1 Thessalonians 5:11).

1 Thessalonians 5:11 Comments - We find that the passage about the Rapture of the Church (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18) and of Christ’s Second Return (1 Thessalonians 5:1-11) both end with the same charge to comfort one another with these words. However, scholars feel that 1 Thessalonians 5:11 carries a broader reference to both passages.

Verses 12-13

Paul Commends The Believers Unto Their Spiritual Leaders In 1 Thessalonians 5:12-13 Paul commends the church of Thessalonica into the hands of those spiritual leaders who have been raised up to perfect their sanctification; for God has ordained the local church to be the institution He uses to bring every believer through the process of sanctification. One of the outward manifestations of a person who is going through the process of sanctification is his/her submission to church authority. In fact, the process of sanctification was designed to take place within the body of Christ, and more particularly, within the local congregation. Each congregation is divinely governed by leaders who are filled with the Spirit of God, and anointed with spiritual gifts for the edifying and perfecting of the saints. Thus, we see in 1 Thessalonians 5:12-13 how Paul commends these believers unto their spiritual leaders in order to keep them established in the process of sanctification.

Illustration - One of my greatest challenges as a believer was to change denominations when I embraced the Pentecostal message. My challenge lay in finding a new congregation to fellowship with and new spiritual leaders to serve under. As I look back on this transitional period, I see several failures in my life that were unbecoming of me, and that actually surprised me as a believer. I felt that I was stronger than to have yielded to some sins. These failures took place because I was not yet firmly rooted in my new church. Because I did not have the positive peer pressure to establish boundaries in my life, I strayed out of bounds a few times. But thank God for His grace in keeping me and guiding into fellowship with some great men of God. As I submitted under these spiritual giants, my inner strength and courage grew and I began to serve the Lord effectively again, as I had done in the past.

Verses 14-24

Practical Examples of Sanctification - The closing passage of 1 Thessalonians 5:14-22 gives the Thessalonians some practical examples of what this process of sanctification should look like among themselves. It contains short exhortations that emphasize the manifestation of the Holy Spirit in our physical lives. In 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24 Paul assures them of the work of sanctification that will take place in their lives as they serve the Lord. This is because the underlying theme of the epistle of 1 Thessalonians is the office and ministry of the Holy Spirit at work in our lives, with 1 Thessalonians 5:23 serving as a summary of the theme of this epistle.

1 Thessalonians 5:16 Comments - In Galatians 5:22-23, joy is a fruit of God’s Spirit. Thus, we are able to “rejoice evermore.” In order to do this, we are going to have to learn to trust God in every area of our lives. By His Word we walk in victory, we have no fear, etc.

Psalms 5:11, “But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice : let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee.”

Psalms 97:11-12, “Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart. Rejoice in the LORD, ye righteous ; and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.”

Proverbs 29:6, “In the transgression of an evil man there is a snare: but the righteous doth sing and rejoice .”

Romans 5:2, “By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God .”

Romans 15:13, “Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.”

Hebrews 3:6, “But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end .”

We are to rejoice always, or, at all time. We must choose to rejoice. We are commanded to rejoice, even in bad circumstances.

Psalms 9:2, “I will be glad and rejoice in thee: I will sing praise to thy name, O thou most High.”

Psalms 31:7, “I will be glad and rejoice in thy mercy: for thou hast considered my trouble; thou hast known my soul in adversities;”

Psalms 42:5, “Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance.”

Psalms 118:24, “This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.”

Romans 12:12, “Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer;”

Philippians 4:4, “Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.”

1 Thessalonians 5:17 Pray without ceasing.

1 Thessalonians 5:17 “Pray without ceasing.” Note several modern translations of 1 Thessalonians 5:17.

AmpBible Be unceasing in prayer praying perseveringly,

NASB Pray without ceasing,

NIV Pray continually,

NLT Never stop praying,

RSV Pray constantly,

TEV Pray at all times,

Thayer One word used is “assiduously or busily.”

If we have time to pray, God has time to listen. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 very likely means that we are to pray continually, daily, as a part of our daily lifestyle.

Illustration - Lelah C. Morgan, a Southern Baptist missionary, died at the age of one hundred and four (104). She was known as a woman who prayed without ceasing. “‘I keep the line open,’ Morgan said a few years ago about her ongoing conversation with God. ‘He knows when I’m going to talk to Him. I don’t have to introduce myself. I pray all day long--even through my daily duties. I can pray as well when I'm scraping carrots as any other time.” [78]

[78] “Oldest Retired Missionary, Lelah Morgan, Dies at 104,” in Baptist Press (1/24/83) (Nashville, TN).

Scripture References - Note similar verses:

Luke 18:1, “And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;”

Romans 12:12, “Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer;”

Colossians 4:2, “Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;”

1 Thessalonians 5:18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 Comment - When we thank God during the difficult times, we are simply placing our faith and trust in Him. It is an act of faith that is well pleasing unto God. We are not being thankful for bad things happening, but acknowledging that our hope and trust is in God.

During my third year in seminary, I was working as a janitor at nights for a private school. One night while cleaning the locker room I was changing a light bulb. I could not find a ladder quickly, so I drug a desk under the light fixture, and climbed up. I put one foot on the desktop and one up on a locker. The desk slipped and I came a tumbling down. My kidneys hit the corner of the locker room bench and I hurt exceedingly. I lay on the bench until the pain eased up. However, I began to thank God and praise the Lord until I quit hurting. I chose to give thanks and praise to my God during difficult times.

Scripture References Note similar verses:

Psalms 34:1, “I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.”

Job 1:21, “And said, Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.”

Ephesians 5:20, “Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;”

1 Thessalonians 5:19 Quench not the Spirit.

1 Thessalonians 5:19 Comments - Quenching the Spirit would be the sins of not yielding to the Spirit of God, thus, sins of omission. We know that the context of 1 Thessalonians 5:19-21 emphasizes the operation of the gifts of the Spirit. In contrast, grieving the Spirit would be sins of commission, or sins of the flesh that we commit. Galatians 5:19-21 calls these acts the “works of the flesh.”

Ephesians 4:30, “And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.”

1 Thessalonians 5:20 Despise not prophesyings.

1 Thessalonians 5:20 Comments - There is today a tendency in spirit-filled church, which believe and practice the gifts of the Spirit, to despise those who have the gift of prophecy. When a young Christian receives this gift and begins to exercise it, he finds that he is not always received. He has to deal with the decision to obey God rather than to be moved by man's responses.

Paul, the apostle, operated in this gift, and therefore, he understood how people responded to it.

1 Thessalonians 5:21 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.

1 Thessalonians 5:19-21 Comments - The Gifts of the Spirit - These verses indicate that the gifts of the Spirit, especially prophecy, were active in the church at Thessalonica. We know from Acts 19:1-7 that the believers at Ephesus were filled with the Holy Spirit with the gifts of tongues and prophecy. We can be pretty certain that the churches in the surrounding region of Ephesus partook of the same, being influenced by this key church. We know from 1 Corinthians 1:4-7; 1 Corinthians 12:4-11 that the church at Corinth was operating in the nine-fold gifts of the Spirit. We also see in Galatians 3:5 that the churches throughout Galatia were receiving the Spirit and experiencing miracles. We see in 1 Thessalonians 5:19-20 that the gift of prophecy was active in the church in Thessalonica. Thus, we can be sure that most, if not all, of the churches that Paul established would be considered “Pentecostal” by modern definition.

1 Thessalonians 5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil.

1 Thessalonians 5:21-22 Comments Use Wisdom in Making Decisions - As a business manager, I have learned to evaluate every issue placed on my desk in order to make an intelligent decision. This carefulness is motivated by the desire to lead the company into prosperity and not into problems. We should treat the decision-making in our own personal lives with the same care. No decision should be made without counsel and prayer. Often, it is good to delay a decision in order to test the people or the situation for credibility before addressing a matter.

1 Thessalonians 5:21-22 give us two guidelines for evaluating issues before making a decision. If the decision is good and beneficial for your business, your ministry, your family, and others, then it is most likely a good decision. We are to hold fast to those things that bring good. In contrast, if the decision places you or others in a position of appearing evil, then abstain from that path.

Murdock reads, “Explore everything and hold fast the good: and fly from every thing evil.”

The RWebster reads, “Examine all things; hold fast that which is good. Abstain from all appearance of evil.”

1 Thessalonians 5:23 “And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly” Comments - The epistle of 1 Thessalonians emphasizes the office and ministry of the Holy Spirit in sanctifying the believer. Thus, the phrase “God of peace” refers to the Holy Spirit. His peace is manifested in our lives as we allow Him to work and sanctify us. His peace is the primary indicator that we are being led by the Holy Spirit through the process of sanctification.

God takes every believer through a process of sanctification, or purging. See John 15:1-8 on the vine and the branches. The process of sanctification begins in the spirit and proceeds through the soul and into the body. This verse lists the three-fold make-up of man in this order of sanctification: spirit, soul, and body. God initially gives the born-again believer a new, recreated spirit in his inner man. The believer then begins to sanctify his mind through an understanding of the Word of God. This allows the believer to conduct his actions and lifestyle in a manner that bring him into a journey of peace in every area of his life. Many believers have been born again, but they have not renewed their minds with the Word of God. Therefore, they incur many unnecessary problems in life because of this deficiency in their minds and bodies. The Spirit of God has been poured forth into the life of every believer to guide him into a journey of peace in every aspect of his make-up: spirit, soul, and body.

1 Thessalonians 5:23 “and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ” - Comments - Note that 1 Thessalonians 5:23 declares that man is made up in three parts, his spirit, soul and body. The spirit is the heart of man. The soul is man's mind, emotions and intellect. The body is man's physical body.

Illustration - It is possible to take a person, give them a great education for their minds, and train them to be a good athlete with a strong body, yet this person can still have a wicked heart. This is the three-fold make-up of mankind.

In 1 Thessalonians 5:23 Paul refers to the inner man first and moves to the outward man. Kenneth Hagin explains that this is because Paul was more spirit conscience than flesh conscience. [79]

[79] Kenneth Hagin, How You Can Be Led By the Spirit of God (Tulsa, Oklahoma: Faith Library Publications, c1986, 1997), 7.

Where did this three-fold concept of the whole man originate? If we study the Law of Moses, we see that Moses refers to this concept when summarizing the Ten Commandments. In fact the Shema, one of the verses that was popular enough with the children of Israel to be placed into their phylacteries, clearly refers to this three-fold make-up of man.

Deuteronomy 6:4, “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.”

In fact, Jesus Christ refers to the Shema by emphasizing this same concept.

Mark 12:30, “And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.”

1 Thessalonians 5:23 Comments - Note that three of the most important people in our society are our ministers who care for our spiritual well-being, our doctors who care for the health of our bodies, and our school teachers who educate our minds. To illustrate this three-fold makeup of man, we can easily see how it is possible to take a young person and send him to the finest university in order to educate his mind. He can join the athletic team at school and become a great athlete. Yet, this same person could still have a wicked heart.

1 Thessalonians 5:23 Scripture References - Note a similar verse:

1 Corinthians 7:34, “There is difference also between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit : but she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband.”

1 Thessalonians 5:24 “who also will do it” Comments - What will the God of peace do? The previous verse tells us that He will complete the process of sanctification in our lives.

1 Thessalonians 5:24 Comments - The underlying theme of the epistle of 1 Thessalonians is the office and ministry of the Holy Spirit in sanctifying the believer. Thus, Paul closes his epistle by declaring that the Holy Spirit will be faithful to sanctify us. God will be faithful to guide us through the process of sanctification. What shall He do? He shall sanctify us wholly (1 Thessalonians 5:23) as we abide in Him. While the epistles to the Corinthians emphasize the believer’s role in his sanctification, the epistles to the Thessalonians emphasize God’s faithful role in our sanctification.

Verses 25-28

Closing Remarks - In 1 Thessalonians 5:25-28 Paul makes his closing remarks with a benediction (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24) and final greetings (1 Thessalonians 5:25-28).

1 Thessalonians 5:26 Comments - Comments - The Oriental custom of greeting with a kiss was practiced within the Jewish culture and the early Church. [80] Paul’s charge to salute, or greet, the brethren with a holy kiss is also found in the closing remarks of three other Pauline epistles as well as 1 Peter, where it is called a “kiss of love.”

[80] James D. G. Dunn, Romans 1-8, in Word Biblical Commentary: 58 Volumes on CD-Rom, vol. 38A (Dallas, Texas: Word, Incorporated, 2002), in Libronix Digital Library System, v. 2.1c [CD-ROM] (Bellingham, WA: Libronix Corp., 2000-2004), comments on Romans 16:16.

Romans 16:16, “Salute one another with an holy kiss. The churches of Christ salute you.”

1 Corinthians 16:20, “All the brethren greet you. Greet ye one another with an holy kiss.”

2 Corinthians 13:12, “Greet one another with an holy kiss.”

1 Thessalonians 5:26, “Greet all the brethren with an holy kiss.”

1 Peter 5:14, “Greet ye one another with a kiss of charity. Peace be with you all that are in Christ Jesus. Amen.”

1 Thessalonians 5:27 I charge you by the Lord that this epistle be read unto all the holy brethren.

1 Thessalonians 5:27 Comments - The New Testament church, because of its Jewish heritage, immediately incorporated the Old Testament Scriptures into its daily worship. Yet, these new believers quickly realized that some of the Old Testament teachings, such as the Law of Moses, must now be interpreted in light of the New Covenant. We see this challenge taking place at the first council of Jerusalem in Acts 15:0.

Acts 15:1-2, “And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved. When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question.”

In addition to the recognition of the Old Testament, the apostles realized that they had been given the authority to reveal the new covenant with as high authority as they held the Jewish Old Testament. According to 2 Corinthians 3:1-11, they were appointed ministers of this new covenant.

The major requirement for all of the New Testament writings to be considered “divinely inspired Scripture” was apostolic authority. These twenty-seven books had to have been either written by one of the twelve apostles, or either been imposed by these apostles upon the churches as an “instrument” of the Church, to be read and obeyed by all. Thus, we see the Gospels and Paul’s epistles being read in gatherings alongside the Old Testament Scriptures, and being elevated to equal authority as other sacred Scripture.

Therefore, Paul’s qualifications as a minister of the new covenant was elevated to a level higher than others due to the fact that God had given him the calling of writing much of the New Testament. Paul realized that his writings were on an equal level of authority as the Old Testament Scriptures.

Therefore, Paul held the authority to speak on the level of authority that Christ Jesus spoke while on this earth.

Scripture References - Note similar Scriptures that indicate how the New Testament writings became elevated by apostolic authority to become equal to the Old Testament Scriptures:

1 Corinthians 14:37, “If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord.”

2 Corinthians 3:6, “Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.”

Colossians 4:16, “And when this epistle is read among you, cause that it be read also in the church of the Laodiceans; and that ye likewise read the epistle from Laodicea.”

1 Thessalonians 4:2, “For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus.”

2 Thessalonians 2:15, “Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.”

1 Timothy 5:18, “For the scripture saith, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward.”

1 Peter 1:12, “Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.”

2 Peter 3:16, “As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.”

Revelation 1:3, “Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.”

1 Thessalonians 5:28 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.

1 Thessalonians 5:28 “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you” - Comments (1) - In a similar way that the early apostles were instructed by Jesus to let their peace come upon the home of their host (Matthew 10:13), so did Paul the apostle open every one of his thirteen New Testament epistles with a blessing of God’s peace and grace upon his readers. Matthew 10:13 shows that you can bless a house by speaking God's peace upon it.

Matthew 10:13, “And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you.”

This practice of speaking blessings upon God’s children may have its roots in the Priestly blessing of Numbers 6:22-27, where God instructed Moses to have the priests speak a blessing upon the children of Israel. Now Paul closes his epistle to the Thessalonians by restating the blessing that he opened his epistle with in 1 Thessalonians 1:1.

Comments (2) - In 1 Thessalonians 5:28 Paul basically commends them into the hands of the Lord Jesus Christ, in much the same way that he did in the book of Acts. We find this statement at the end of all of Paul’s epistles.

Acts 14:23, “And when they had ordained them elders in every church, and had prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord, on whom they believed.”

Acts 20:32, “And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.”

1 Thessalonians 5:28 “Amen” Comments - In the Textus Receptus the word “Amen” is attached to the end of all thirteen of Paul’s epistles, as well as to the Gospels of Matthew and Mark, and to the General Epistles of Hebrews , 1 and 2 Peter , 1 and 2 John, and to the book of Revelation. However, because “Amen” is not supported in more ancient manuscripts many scholars believe that this word is a later liturgical addition. For example, these Pauline benedictions could have been used by the early churches with the added “Amen.”

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Bibliographical Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on 1 Thessalonians 5". Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. 2013.