1Th 5:1 “Times” refers to an extended period of time and “epochs” to a fixed time or date. See Luke 20:9-10. Why did the Thessalonians need no one to teach them about times and dates? See verse 2, and Mat 24:36, Acts 1:6-7.
1Th 5:2 In what way will the day of the Lord come like a thief in the night? See Mat 24:42-44, Rev 3:3. Is the coming of a thief in the night a blessing?
1Th 5:3 What is the “Peace and Safety” message that has been proclaimed by false prophets throughout history? See Deut 29:19, Jer 6:13-15, 8:4-17, 14:11-16, 23:14-22, Ezekiel 13:1-16. What effect does such a message have in the hearts of those who hear it, and what is the inevitable result? See Luke 21:34, 1 Sam 4, esp. 1Sa 4:19-22, Jer 7:1-16. For an interesting study on the sudden unexpectedness of God’s judgment falling upon the wicked, see Ex 15:9,10, Jos 8:20-22, Jud 20:41,42, 2Ch 32:19-21, Ps 73:18-20, Pr 29:1, Isa 30:13, Lu 17:27-29, 21:34,35, Ac 12:22,23, Re 18:7,8.
1Th 5:4-5 Why did Paul say that the day of the Lord should not overtake the Thessalonians like a thief? Again, what does this teach us about the nature of the day of the Lord coming like a thief? See Amos 5:18-20. What does it mean that they were not in darkness and not of the night, but sons of light and sons of day? See Acts 26:18, Rom 13:12-13, Eph 5:8-9, Col 1:13, 1 Pet 2:9, 1 Jo 2:8.
1Th 5:6-8 How does the sleep described in these verses differ from that in 1Th 4:13? Note: the Greek words that are used are also different. See Mat 25:5, Mar 13:36, Eph 5:13-14. In verse 7, with what is this sort of sleep likened? See Is 29:9-14. What does it mean to be sober? What does verse 8 say we should put on to keep sober? See Rom 13:12, Eph 6:11-18. Note: Paul’s picture is of a soldier on watch, armed and alert. See 2 Tim 2:4.
1Th 5:9 For what has God destined us? Who is “us”? Are there some God has destined for wrath? Who are they? What is the relationship between God’s sovereign will and a person’s free will in obtaining salvation? See Eph 1:3-5, 1 Pet 1:1-2, Rom 9:10-21, 2 Tim 2:20-21, 1 Tim 2:4, 2 Pet 3:9, Rom 2:4-5, 9:22, Ez 18:23,30-32, Rom 11:22-23.
1Th 5:10 Note: the word Paul used for “awake” here is the same as in verse 6 used for “alert”, as it is usually translated, and the word for “asleep” is the same used in 1Th 5:6-7, not that used in 1Th:4:13-15. With this understanding, why is it that Christ died for us? What must one do who is asleep in order to live together with Him? See 1Th 5:6, 8.
1Th 5:11 Compare verses 10-11 with 1Th 4:17-18. How is the meaning of Paul’s words in verse 11 different from those in 4:18? How are verses 9-11 a summary of the discussion Paul began in 1Th 4:13?
1Th 5:12-13 What three tasks does Paul describe the spiritual leaders of the Thessalonians as performing? What does he mean by “give instruction”? See NASB text note, and notice the same word is used in verse 14, as well as in Acts 20:31, 1 Cor 4:14. What is their attitude to be to such leaders? Why? See 2:9, 1 Cor 16:15,16,18, Heb 13:17. Are all religious leaders to be esteemed? See Heb 13:7, Mat 7:15-16. “We need wise leadership today, but still more wise following. An army of captains and colonels never won a battle.” What is the defining quality to be of our relationship with one another? See Rom 12:18, Heb 12:14.
1Th 5:14 What does Paul mean by unruly? See 2 Thess 3:6-12. Does living in peace with one another mean never speaking out against waywardness? What does this verse teach us about how we are to relate to Christians who are not of our stature in Christ? See Is 35:4, Rom 14:1, 15:1, 1 Cor 13:4, Gal 5:22, Eph 4:1-3, Col 3:12-13, 2 Tim 2:24-25, 4:2.
1Th 5:15 What is to be the Christian’s response when afflicted by the evil of another? See 1 Sam 24:12-13, Prov 20:22, 24:29, Mat 5:38-48, Rom 12:17-21, 1 Cor 6:7, 1 Pet 2:21-23, 3:9. Is it ever good to pay back evil with evil?
1Th 5:16-18 What is to be the Christian’s attitude toward life? See Phil 4:4. Does he ever have the right to be despondent, irritable, crotchety, grumpy, crabby, etc…? How does verse 17 make verse 16 possible? What does verse 18 say is God’s will for us in Christ Jesus? See Eph 5:20. What does “everything” mean? Why is it possible to thank God for everything? See Rom 8:28.
1Th 5:19-22 Note: the Greek present imperative used in Paul’s prohibition here means to stop something in progress, i.e., “stop quenching the Spirit”, “stop despising prophesies”. “Quench” means to extinguish, put out, as in fire. See Mat 25:8, Mark 9:48, Eph 6:16. In what way were the Thessalonians quenching the Spirit? See vs. 20. What is prophesy, and what is its importance in the church? Does it only mean to “foretell”, or does it better mean to “forth-tell”? See 1 Cor 14:3,24-25, 12:28, 14:1, Eph 4:11. What safeguard does Paul require against false prophecies and disorder or confusion? 1 Cor 14:29-33, 1 Jn 4:1. How do his words in verse 22 protect a church from the abuse or misuse of spiritual gifts?
1Th 5:23 What aspect of God’s nature does Paul frequently emphasize at the close of his letters? See Rom 15:33, 16:20, 2 Cor 13:11, Phil 4:9, 2 Thess 3:16, Heb 13:20. What is Paul’s great parting prayer for the Thessalonians? See 1Th 4:3. What does “entirely” mean? What does this verse teach us about the nature of man? Note: the verb “preserved” used in this verse is singular. See Luke 1:46-47, 1 Cor 15:45, Heb 4:12. How would Paul have the Thessalonians be at the coming of the Lord Jesus? See 1Th 3:13, 1 Cor 1:8, Eph 5:26-27, Phil 1:6,10, 2 Pet 3:14, Jude 1:24. Why is this important? See again 1Th 5:2-9, Phil 2:15-16, Col 1:22-23.
1Th 5:24 What does Paul mean that God is faithful? See 1 Cor 1:8-9, 10:13, 2 Thess 3:3, Jude 1:24-25. What is it that Paul is confident He will bring to pass?
1Th 5:25 What is Paul’s request from the Thessalonians? See 2 Thess 3:1-3, Eph 6:19, Col 4:3.
1Th 5:26-28 Note: A kiss on the cheek was a common greeting of affection in Bible times; see Luke 7:45. What is the significance that our Christian greetings be holy? See Luke 22:48. Was Paul’s letter for the leaders of the church only? What does this teach us about a) the responsibility of the church leaders, and b) the responsibility of the church members?