Dr William T Bailey, Jr
May 11, 2018
Greetings in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ!
I thought it noteworthy, as others have already done, to give some reasons for Paul’s first epistle. Therefore I will give a brief introduction to this message. Althought there are other important points that could be made, I will focus only on Paul.
Paul’s first written epistle to the Church, was to the Thessalonians written at Corinth A.D. 51
The Thessalonians was at that time, the model Church and example to the believers in Macedonia and Achaia, which is about the size of Great Britain. They faith held even when Paul was not with them, as it was related to him by Timothy in 1st Thessalonians 3:6. Silas and Timotheus stayed in Berea while Paul was sent away. Acts 17:14.
As always, the Holy Spirit guided me to first understand Saul (Paul) conversion to his first written book. And, as a student of the word we need to go into and study Acts 8-17 and follow Saul/Paul’s journey.
Before Paul’s conversion, scripture tells us in Acts 8:3-4:
3 As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison.
4 Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word.
Since the church was scatter, they share the word of God everywhere they went, becoming the first missionaries. This was the church at Jerusalem.
Saul conversion occurred on the road to Damascus where he had a personal encounter with the Lord Jesus, Acts 9:1-16. Jesus, speaking to Ananias shows him Saul purpose in 9:15-16:
15 But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel:
16 For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name’s sake.
At this time, Saul was going into the synagogues in Damascus preaching that Jesus is the Son of God. This they did not want to hear and wanted to kill him. Saul escaped to Jerusalem where Barnabus took him to the Apostles and told the story of Saul’s conversion and the preaching of Jesus. While there, he disputed with the Grecians and they wanted to also kill him. These Jews were called “Hellenistic” Jews. These were those who rejected Jesus as the Christ and resisted the preaching of the gospel, even to the point of trying to kill Saul. The Grecians or “Hellenistic” Jews were first mention in Acts 1:1:
And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration.
Here Saul returned to Caesarea and them to Tarsus, 9:30
30 Which when the brethren knew, they brought him down to Caesarea, and sent him forth to Tarsus.
At this point, Peter’s Ministry is brought into scripture with 9:32-11:25.
Here Peter gives the gospel to Cornelius, the centurion gentile and his family: Acts 10 1-33. Peter is given a general understanding of the of the gospel to the gentiles: 10:34-36
34 Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:
35 But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him.
36 The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (he is Lord of all:)
Peter’s Salvation message: Acts 10: 37-44:
37 That word, I say, ye know, which was published throughout all Judaea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached;
38 How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.
39 And we are witnesses of all things which he did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; whom they slew and hanged on a tree:
40 Him God raised up the third day, and shewed him openly;
41 Not to all the people, but unto witnesses chosen before God, even to us, who did eat and drink with him after he rose from the dead.
42 And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead.
43 To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.
44 While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.
Note verses 39-40, this is the gospel message for believers.
Praise The Lord for His Word! Next, Part 2
Dr William T Bailey, Jr.