1 Thessalonians 4:2 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 Thessalonians 4:2, NIV: For you know what instructions we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 4:2, ESV: For you know what instructions we gave you through the Lord Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 4:2, KJV: For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 4:2, NASB: For you know what instructions we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 4:2, NLT: For you remember what we taught you by the authority of the Lord Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 4:2, CSB: For you know what commands we gave you through the Lord Jesus.

What does 1 Thessalonians 4:2 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Earlier in this letter, Paul commended the Thessalonians for their faithfulness (1 Thessalonians 1:5–8) and for their excellent reputation in enduring persecution (1 Thessalonians 3:5–8). In this verse Paul emphasizes again that the Thessalonians realized his teachings carried authority. This authority was not actually Paul's, rather it was that of the Lord Jesus. These Christian believers did not see authority in Paul, but they recognized truth coming from Paul. Similarly, in his first letter to the Corinthians, Paul also appealed to the divine authority of his message. He wrote: "Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God. And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit…" (1 Corinthians 2:12–13).

Paul's reminder about what he had taught shows the importance of retaining truths they already knew. Sometimes people neglect established truth in a quest for something new (Acts 17:21; 2 Peter 1:12). Although it is important to learn more truth from God's Word, discernment is required. Often, if a teaching is new, it may not be true, and if it is true, it probably isn't new.