From: Moon-Ryul Jung (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Sun Feb 03 2002 - 04:13:56 EST
> On Saturday, February 2, 2002, at 10:05 PM, Moon-Ryul Jung wrote:
> > I think your interpretation fits well to 5:4, which seems to be
> > the point Paul was trying to make. Paul has three statements to make:
> > (1) Lord will come as a thief at night. (5:2)
> > (2) The unbelievers would not escape the judgement that comes a
> > a thief at night. (5:3)
> > (3) While Lord comes as a thief at night, the believers do not
> > need to worry about it; the day would not seize them as a thief.
> > (5:4)
> > hUMEIS DE ADELPHOI OUK ESTE EN SKOTEI hINA hH hHERA hUMAS hWS
> > KLEPTHS KATALABH,
> > But you bothers are not in darkness so as for the day to seize you
> > as a thief.
> > 5:10, according to your interpretation, also encourages the believers
> > not to worry about the sudden coming of the Lord. Emphasizing
> > that BOTH the dead AND the living believers would be raised would be
> > out of the context at hand, it seems.
> Am I the only one, or does it seem just a little odd that the
> Thessalonians, after being told that being DEAD would not prevent them
> from participation in the day of the Lord (4.13-18), must additionally
> be assured that simply being ASLEEP would not cause them to lose out? In
> 4.13, 17 Paul makes clear that simply being ALIVE and REMAINING until
> the PAROUSIA assured the Thessalonians of participation (hHMEIS hOI
> ZWNTES hOI PERILEIPOMENOI, used in both verses). Do they, in addition,
> really need to be told that being literally asleep would not cause them
> to miss the PAROUSIA? Come, now. This stretches credulity.
> Steven Lo Vullo
> Madison, WI
Hmm, a good argument! I have two arguments for Iver's interpretation.
see whether they stand.
(1) 4:13-18 talks about the hope of the dead in Christ. PERI TWN
KOIMOMENON (4.13). 5:1-11 talks about the time and the season. PERI TWN
CRWNWN KAI TWN KAIRWN (5.1). The dead does not need to worry about the
suddenness of his coming. Only the living does. Paul tells them not to
about it but to maintain a sober life. The reason? While his coming is
like a thief, this suddenness would not surprise the believers (5.4).
provides reasons for them to maintain a sober life, not worrying about the
time. The assurance that whether we are awake or asleep, we may live with
who comes suddenly like a thief, will certainly help the audience.
But as you argued, it is difficult to believe that Paul paid attention
to such a detail, i.e. whether one is sleeping or not when the Lord comes.
But I assume that somehow the people of the church might have had concern
for such a detail for some cultural reasons. They might have worried that
if they were sleeping when the Lord came, they would not be able to meet
him. BECAUSE THEY KNEW THAT THE LORD COMES LIKE A THIEF. At least some
might have had such a concern.
(2) In the chapter 4, Paul distinquishes WE who are alive and remaining
until the Lord's coming from THOSE who are dead in Christ. So, WE/YOU
in the letter refers to those who were living at that time. When Paul
says "whether we are awake or asleep, we may live with him", Paul
refers to WE who are living at that time.
Moon R. Jung
Sogang Univ, Seoul, Korea
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