God will take care of them (1 Thess. 2:16)

“The Jews in Judea

Hindered us

From speaking

To the gentiles

So that they might be saved.

Thus,

They have constantly been

Filling up

The measure of their sins.

But God’s wrath

Has overtaken them at last.”

κωλυόντων ἡμᾶς τοῖς ἔθνεσιν λαλῆσαι ἵνα σωθῶσιν, εἰς τὸ ἀναπληρῶσαι αὐτῶν τὰς ἁμαρτίας πάντοτε. ἔφθασεν δὲ ἐπ’ αὐτοὺς ἡ ὀργὴ εἰς τέλος.

Paul said, “The Jews in Judea hindered us (κωλυόντων ἡμᾶς) from speaking (λαλῆσαι) to the gentiles (τοῖς ἔθνεσιν) so that they might be saved (ἵνα σωθῶσιν).  Thus, they have constantly been filling up (εἰς τὸ ἀναπληρῶσαι) the measure of all their sins (αὐτῶν τὰς ἁμαρτίας πάντοτε).  But God’s wrath (δὲ ἐπ’ αὐτοὺς ἡ ὀργὴ) has overtaken them (ἔφθασεν δὲ ἐπ’ αὐτοὺς) at last (εἰς τέλος).”  Paul explained that the Judean Jews around Jerusalem forbid them from speaking to the gentiles.  This critique may also have applied to the Christian Jews who did not want gentiles becoming Christian.  Paul and the other Christians had hoped to save the gentiles as well as the Jewish people.  However, these Jerusalem Jews were only adding to their sins.  They were filling up a bowl of sins.  Paul indicated that at last, God’s wrath had caught up with the Jerusalem Jews and their sins.  Was this a reference to a future destruction of the Jerusalem Temple?  Did this mean that finally the Jerusalem Jews would suffer?  Was this finally the last degree or the full retribution or was this a reference to the end times, the final judgment?  Paul was not clear.  However, he was sure that God would take care of it.  Do you believe that non-Jewish people can be saved?

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