1. 1 Thessalonians 1:6 (ESV)
  2. Exposition

What is the relationship of verse 6 to verse 5?

1 Thessalonians 1:6 (ESV)

6 And you became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you received the word in much affliction, with the joy of the Holy Spirit,

Verse 6 begins with the word and, which leads a number of commentators to tightly link the verse with verse 5. On this interpretation, verse 6 is often understood as part of the reason for Paul’s confidence in the Thessalonians’ election.1,2,3 However, it is better to recognize in verse 6 a natural progression to a new but related theme, since verse 7 is part of the same sentence in Greek and expresses the result of the imitation described in verse 6. If verse 6 is connected too strongly to verse 5, then verse 7 is left dangling, even though it is grammatically and logically dependent on verse 6.