In II Thessalonians 1:7-9,are those who know not God, and those who obey not the gospel two groups of people, and if so what groups is this verse referring to?


"... and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power" (II Thessalonians 1:7-9).

Paul does speak of two groups of people: Those who do not know God and those who do not obey the gospel.

The first group are those who are ignorant about God. This can be because of never hearing the gospel or choosing not to hear the message, such as an atheist.

The second group are those who know about God to some extent, but for various reasons decide to not live fully by what Jesus requires of them (Matthew 7:21-23).