I. WRITER — Paul (1:1; 3:17)
II. PLACE OF WRITING — Corinth (Acts 18:5)
III. DATE — A.D. 52
III. OCCASION — Paul heard that the Thessalonians were teaching the false idea that the Day of the Lord had come. Some quit their jobs because of this.
· to correct the false error that the Day of the Lord had come
· to give proper criteria to recognize that day.
V. THEME — corrections about the Day of the Lord (2:2)
VI. KEY VERSES — 1:7-10; 2:3
1. Apocalyptic in style of writing, 2:1-12
2. Emphasis on the Day of the Lord
3. Adds to the prophetic truths of 1 Thessalonians
4. Contrasts to 1 Thessalonians
1 Thessalonians deals with Christ’s coming for the saints in the air while 2 Thessalonians deals with Christ’s coming to the earth with the saints.
1 Thessalonians presents the coming of Christ while 2nd Thessalonians sets for the coming of the Antichrist.
1 Thessalonians emphasizes the Day of Christ (rapture) while 2nd Thessalonians emphasizes the Day of the Lord.
1 Thessalonians concerns itself with the dead while 2nd Thessalonians concerns itself with the living.
5. The shortest epistle that Paul ever wrote to any church: 3 chapters, 47 verses and 1,042 words.
6. Tone to more formal and rigid than 1st Thessalonians.
7. Turn of events from 1st Thessalonians from a dynamic outreach church to a church turned inward.
VIII. HISTORICAL BACKGROUND TO MINISTRY AT THESSALONICA
A. Paul received the Macedonian vision at Troy to go to Europe, Acts 16:8-14.
This was the beginning of spreading the Gospel from the continent of Asia to the continent of Europe.
Going to Thessalonica transferred the ministry of the Gospel to Western civilization.
Macedonia was the former kingdom of Alexander the Great (he wanted one world domination and enlightenment with the culture of Greece. He wanted to marry east and west.)
B. Paul came to minister in Thessalonica for three successive and successful weeks.
The Jews accused Paul’s evangelistic team of “turning the world upside down.”
Paul fled the city in the face of much opposition.
C. The principal people in the church at Thessalonica were Gentiles (1:9; Ac 17:4).
IX. THE CITY OF THESSALONICA
A. Thessalonica was a famous city in Paul’s day in the zenith of its splendor.
B. Famous harbor:
Situated on the Thermic Gulf, a natural harbor.
Xerxes the Persian established his naval base at this bay when he invaded Europe.
It was one of the world’s greatest dockyards of Roman times.
C. Free city:
No troops quartered within it.
Autonomy in all internal affairs.
D. 100 miles south-west of Philippi and more important than Philippi
Philippi — a Roman colony
Thessalonica — Greek in culture
E. Most populous city in Macedonia
F. Large share in the commerce of the Aegean.
G. Strategic importance
Harbor and the Egnatian Way were crucial to spreading Christianity to all the world.
The Egnatian Way went west to Rome and east to Asia.
H. In post-apostolic times, the Gospel made rapid progress in Thessalonica.
I. Thessalonica is the city of Salonica today (or Thessaloniki)
J. Population in first century: about 200,000
I. Greeting (1:1-2)
II. Commendation (1:3-12)
A. Appreciation (1:3-4)
B. Perseverance (1:5-10)
C. Prayer (1:11-12)
III. Correction (2:1-12)
A. Day of the Lord (2:1-5)
B. Mystery of lawlessness (2:6-12)
IV. Continuing (2:13-17)
A. Thanksgiving (2:13-15)
B. Prayer (2:16-17)
V. Commandments (3:1-15
A. To pray (3:1-2)
B. To put confidence in apostles (3:3-5)
C. To correct disorderly (3:6-10)
D. To command the idle (3:11-13)
E. To discipline the disorderly (3:14-15)
VI. Conclusion (3:16-18)