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  1. #11
    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrawnus View Post
    I think you're putting far too much importance on the word "we".
    Well the letter was written to the Thessalonians (1thes. 1:1). Therefore, the "we" first and foremost refers to the Thessalonians and Paul urges them to encourage one another with very specific words.

    The main point is that those who happen to be alive will be caught up in the clouds together with the dead, who will be resurrected, to meet the Lord in the air.
    Those amongst the Thessalonians.

    Paul simply used the word "we" to describe those who were alive because he happened to be alive (shocker, I know) at the time of writing the letter and thus counted himself among that group, for the time being.
    He also encouraged the Thessalonians to encourage one another with the following: "Then we who are alive, who are left." Remember, they were advised to literally encourage one another with those words thereby giving them the impression that some would be alive at the Lord's return -- "who are left".
    Last edited by Scrawly; 12-07-2018 at 05:10 PM.

  2. #12
    tWebber Chrawnus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    Well the letter was written to the Thessalonians (1thes. 1:1). Therefore, the "we" first and foremost refers to the Thessalonians and Paul urges them to encourage one another with very specific words.
    But Paul isn't a Thessalonian, so "we" couldn't possibly refer first and foremost to the Thessalonians.

    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    Those amongst the Thessalonians.
    That's not a likely interpretation, unless you want to count Paul as a Thessalonian.

    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    He also encouraged the Thessalonians to encourage one another with the following: "Then we who are alive, who are left." Remember, they were advised to literally encourage one another with those words thereby giving them the impression that some would be alive at the Lord's return -- "who are left".
    He's was urging them to encourage each other with the general hope that all Christians have of resurrection, he's wasn't saying that those who were alive at the time would necessarily be alive when Jesus returned. In fact, Paul's point doesn't depend on any Christian being alive at the time of Jesus' return, only on there being a resurrection.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrawnus View Post
    But Paul isn't a Thessalonian, so "we" couldn't possibly refer first and foremost to the Thessalonians.
    Yes it could. Paul is writing to the Thessalonians, and he is including himself and perhaps any other Christian alive at the time of the composition of the letter.

    That's not a likely interpretation, unless you want to count Paul as a Thessalonian.
    Paul was including himself with the Thessalonians whom he was writing to. "We who are alive" = "some of you Thessalonians and perhaps myself (Paul)".

    He's was urging them to encourage each other with the general hope that all Christians have of resurrection
    He was encouraging them to recognize that they would be reunited with their deceased brethren in the air when Christ returns.

    he's wasn't saying that those who were alive at the time would necessarily be alive when Jesus returned.
    He stated that some among the Thessalonians (and perhaps himself and other Christian's alive at the time) "who are alive, who are left" will be reunited with those who have died when Christ returns. He told the Thessalonians to encourage one another with those words, seemingly in expectant anticipation of the Lord coming within a generation or so.

    In fact, Paul's point doesn't depend on any Christian being alive at the time of Jesus' return, only on there being a resurrection.
    Okay. Question: Do you believe it is appropriate to encourage fellow believers today with the words: "We who are alive, who are left, until the coming of Christ will be reunited with our deceased brethren in the air when Christ returns" appropriate language when referring to general hope in the resurrection?
    Last edited by Scrawly; 12-07-2018 at 08:13 PM.

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    tWebber Chrawnus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    Yes it could. Paul is writing to the Thessalonians, and he is including himself and perhaps any other Christian alive at the time of the composition of the letter.



    Paul was including himself with the Thessalonians whom he was writing to. "We who are alive" = "some of you Thessalonians and perhaps myself (Paul)".
    That seems to be a pretty forced interpretation to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    He was encouraging them to recognize that they would be reunited with their deceased brethren in the air when Christ returns.
    Yes, because of the general hope of the resurrection, he wasn't necessarily saying that they would still be alive when Christ returned.

    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    He stated that some among the Thessalonians (and perhaps himself and other Christian's alive at the time) "who are alive, who are left" will be reunited with those who have died when Christ returns. He told the Thessalonians to encourage one another with those words.

    Okay.
    He stated that the Christians who are alive when Christ returned would be reunited with those who had died in Christ. Whether or not he himself, or any of the members of the Church in Thessalonia that Paul was writing to at the time would still be alive was completely beside his point.

  5. #15
    tWebber Chrawnus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    Question: Do you believe it is appropriate to encourage fellow believers today with the words: "We who are alive, who are left, until the coming of Christ will be reunited with our deceased brethren in the air when Christ returns" appropriate language when referring to general hope in the resurrection?
    Yes.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrawnus View Post
    Yes, because of the general hope of the resurrection
    The language of "we who are alive, who are LEFT" seems odd language to use for GENERAL hope of the resurrection.

    he wasn't necessarily saying that they would still be alive when Christ returned.
    He was seemingly giving them that impression when he told them to encourage one another with the words: "we (myself, some of you Thessalonians and other living Christian's) who are alive, who are left".

    He stated that the Christians who are alive when Christ returned would be reunited with those who had died in Christ.
    He stated that the Thessalonians (because the letter was addressed to them) who are alive (along with perhaps Paul and any other living believer) would be reunited with those who had died in Christ, when they are caught up in the air with them upon Christ's return.

    Whether or not he himself, or any of the members of the Church in Thessalonia that Paul was writing to at the time would still be alive was completely beside his point.
    It was not besides the point because Paul urged them to encourage one another with very specific words of "we who are alive, who are left", etc.

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrawnus View Post
    Yes.
    So in a gathering with fellow believers today you have no problem saying: "We who are alive, we WHO ARE LEFT, until the coming of the Lord, will meet our deceased brethren in the air with Christ"? Wouldn't that give them false hope of expecting Christ to return within some of their lifetimes?

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    tWebber Chrawnus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    The language of "we who are alive, who are LEFT" seems odd language to use for GENERAL hope of the resurrection.
    Not when you happen to be member of the group who are currently alive at the moment. It would have been far more odd for Paul to say "those Christians who are alive at the moment, which might or might not include any of us currently living at this moment".

    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    He was seemingly giving them that impression when he told them to encourage one another with the words: "we (myself, some of you Thessalonians and other living Christian's) who are alive, who are left".
    He's giving you that impression. Whether or not the Thessalonians themselves got that impression is another question altogether.

    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    He stated that the Thessalonians (because the letter was addressed to them) who are alive (along with perhaps Paul and any other living believer) would be reunited with those who had died in Christ, when they are caught up in the air with them upon Christ's return.
    The letter was addressed to the Thessalonians, but that does not mean he's speaking only, or primarily about the Thessalonians when he writes about "we who are alive, who are left". He's talking about what will happen with every Christian who is alive at the time of Christ's return, and applying it specifically to the members of the Thessalonian Church. His point is not "Don't grieve, you'll still be alive when Christ returns and then you'll meet your fellow Christians who have died in the faith", his point is "Don't grieve, because when Christ returns those who are dead will be resurrected and then you (who are currently alive) will meet them again".

    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    It was not besides the point because Paul urged them to encourage one another with very specific words of "we who are alive, who are left", etc.
    It's besides the point because it's not pertinent to the point Paul is making. He's simply differentiating between Christians who have died in the faith, and those who are still alive and saying that when Christ returns we will all be reunited. Whether or not any, or all of those who were still alive when Paul wrote his letter would die before Christ's return wasn't the main, or even a secondary point.

  9. #19
    tWebber Chrawnus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    So in a gathering with fellow believers today you have no problem saying: "We who are alive, we WHO ARE LEFT, until the coming of the Lord, will meet our deceased brethren in the air with Christ"? Wouldn't that give them false hope of expecting Christ to return within some of their lifetimes?
    Possibly.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawly View Post
    No. The text says: "Then we who are alive, who are left.." This indicates that some will have died, but some will clearly be left because they were seemingly under the impression that Christ would return within a generation or so.



    He exhorts the Thessalonians to encourage one another with the words that: we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up in the clouds together with the dead to meet the Lord in the air.
    I suspect that Paul's main purpose was in fact to encourage those who were still living regarding those who had fallen asleep, not that Jesus was going to return any moment now. As I think about this more, it seems to me that Paul would NOT wish to convey that, because he would've learned from the other apostles that Jesus stressed that the time of His return would not be known.
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  11. Amen Chrawnus, lee_merrill amen'd this post.

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