1 Thessalonians Chapter 1

Paul opens with greetings with two allusions to the trinity here, first to the fellowship (by the Holy Spirit) at Thessalonica that are in God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ. He also gives his previous allusion to grace (of the Holy Spirit) and peace from God the Father and Jesus Christ. (v1)

Paul gives thanks for their fellowship - praying for them; (v2) knowing of how they work in their faith, love and patience of hope in the Lord - another allusion to the trinity in the believers, faith (on the Son), love (of the Father towards each other as His is towards them) and patience (by the Holy Spirit - His ministrations prepare them for that day when they will be with Him.) (v3) Paul asserts these things indicate their election by grace to God. (v4)

Paul remembers that when he was with them he did not teach them with words, but by power in the Holy Spirit, and this evidence of their election by grace in the Holy Spirit is evidenced by the manner they had in accepting Paul while he was with them. (v5) (not of his own power, but in the Lord's) Paul recounts their decision to emulate Paul's own and also Jesus Christs's behaviour (though with much opposition from the local gentiles) - that they did so with much joy (in repentance). (v6) So under this opposition they are an example to all the fellowships in Macedonia and Achaia. (v7)

Out of the Thessalonica fellowship spread the gopsel (with their own apostolic authority, not Paul's) not just in Macedonia and Achaia but everywhere the correct faith of God was spread by them. This faith is correct. Paul has no need to correct them on the true gospel of grace under the sovereignty of God. (v8) For where they spread the gospel the other fellowships formed show the same character as did Paul (and Jesus) when he was amongst the thessalonians himself, with repentance in the Holy Spirit - turning from idols to the one living and true God. (v9) Paul relates how the spread of the gospel by them is also increasing in revelation of the mystery of God - (His increasing perfection shown towards His People.) (v10) The soon coming also of Jesus, who is raised from the dead, who has given His people grace and delivered them from under His coming wrath.

God is showing increasing perfection in revealing Himself fully amongst His people. First came the law, then Christ as an obedient Son. Then the Holy Spirit came to many obedient sons here now; then Christ will return, then finally the Father will come amongst us on the last day - and everything is made new after the judgement.

We can see how the correct faith of the gospel is passed on as a principal element of an ultrafilter from Paul to the thessalonians to the other fellowships where they spread the gospel abroad - we can clearly see the link in verse 9. For they show the same manner of care for the gospel which Paul had shared with the thessalonians.

Likewise, the ministrations of the Holy Spirit to eternal life are mentioned in v3 and v6 as well as v10, but Paul does not teach them anything on it - merely giving thanks, because they already show the grace in full. (v8)

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