ABBREVIATIONS USED TO DENOTE TIME PERIODS
Occasionally, some reference verses will be added in the left column for additional study.
Certain letters and numbers may also be included with some of the verses. These represent the following:
2:1. NOW WE BESEECH (or ask) YOU, BRETHREN (or brothers), BY THE COMING OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, AND BY OUR GATHERING TOGETHER UNTO HIM (or to meet Him). Ref 1 Thes 4:16,17. Rap.
2:1. NOW WE BESEECH (or ask)
YOU, BRETHREN. Paul is, perhaps, reminding them that they are brethren and trying to draw their attention to what he has to say.
BY THE COMING OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST. This is Jesus coming in the clouds for the Rapture.
AND BY OUR GATHERING TOGETHER UNTO HIM (or to meet Him). This is the Rapture, as the saints are gathered together to Jesus. As it is written, FOR THE LORD HIMSELF SHALL DESCEND FROM HEAVEN WITH A SHOUT, WITH THE VOICE OF THE ARCHANGEL, AND WITH THE TRUMP OF GOD: AND THE DEAD IN CHRIST SHALL RISE FIRST: THEN WE WHICH ARE ALIVE AND REMAIN SHALL BE CAUGHT (or it may be said—gathered) UP TOGETHER WITH THEM IN THE CLOUDS, TO MEET THE LORD IN THE AIR: AND SO SHALL WE EVER BE WITH THE LORD-1 Thes 4:16,17. As Paul had clearly taught them (in 1st Thessalonians), the Rapture would come first, followed by certain events, and then the return of Jesus with all of the saints. He goes on to say, regarding the Rapture,
2:2. THAT YE BE NOT SOON SHAKEN (or unsettled) IN MIND (or in your thinking), OR BE TROUBLED (or alarmed), NEITHER BY SPIRIT (or some prophecy), NOR BY WORD (or a spoken message), NOR BY (a) LETTER AS (supposed to have come) FROM US, AS (or saying) THAT THE DAY OF CHRIST IS AT HAND (or has already come). Ref Phili 1:10; 2:16; 1 Cor 1:8; 2 Cor 1:14; Phili 1:6. P, LD, Rap.
2:2. THAT YE BE NOT SOON SHAKEN (or unsettled, or disturbed)
IN MIND (or in your thinking),
OR BE TROUBLED (or alarmed). The brethren had apparently been receiving false teachings on the Rapture and the times they were in, which caused them to be shaken, troubled, and perhaps even fearful. They may have believed that they were already in the Tribulation period. Paul is exhorting them not to be troubled,
NEITHER BY SPIRIT (or some prophecy). Some false prophecies may have been given by persons other than the apostles, causing confusion.
NOR BY WORD (or a spoken message) or possibly by some reports. A misled person or persons may have brought forth what seemingly was the Word of God, but was actually deceit and confusion.
NOR BY (a)
LETTER AS (supposed to have come)
FROM US. Someone may have forged a letter on this subject, using Paul’s name, causing the saints to be confused and troubled.
Paul is earnestly asking them not to be disturbed by the deceptive teaching and rumors, which false teachers were bringing forth,
THAT THE DAY OF CHRIST IS AT HAND (or has already come, or is present). This is assuring the Thessalonians not to be worried or troubled in any other way, regarding the day of Christ being at hand (or about to happen, or has already happened). In this case, the day of Christ is referring to the Rapture—the coming of Jesus and our gathering together unto Him-v.1. Some may have been troubled or misled about this subject; they may not have understood that this day was not yet at hand.
The term the “day of Christ” is also used
in Phili 1:10 and 2:16-THAT YE MAY APPROVE THINGS THAT ARE EXCELLENT;
THAT YE MAY BE SINCERE AND WITHOUT OFFENSE TILL THE “DAY OF CHRIST”
(or day of the Rapture). HOLDING
FORTH THE WORD OF LIFE; THAT I MAY REJOICE IN THE “DAY OF CHRIST”
(or day of the resurrection and Rapture), THAT I HAVE NOT RUN IN VAIN,
NEITHER LABOURED IN VAIN.
2:3. LET NO MAN DECEIVE YOU BY ANY MEANS (or in any way): FOR THAT DAY SHALL NOT COME, EXCEPT THERE COME A FALLING AWAY (or apostasy, or rebellion) FIRST, AND THAT MAN OF SIN (or lawlessness) BE REVEALED, THE SON OF PERDITION (or the man doomed to destruction-NIV). Ref Gen 6:12; Rev 3:14-22; Jn 17:12. N, LD, Rap, BT.
2:3. LET NO MAN DECEIVE YOU BY ANY MEANS (or in any way). Paul refers to deception. This suggests that, as the time draws near for our gathering together unto Jesus, there will be much religious deception concerning the Rapture. Paul is urging, not to let anyone deceive us regarding this event. This lines up perfectly with the very first thing that Jesus said in Mt 24, Mk 13, and Lk 21, regarding the generation that would be alive when these things happened. Jesus said, TAKE HEED THAT NO MAN DECEIVE YOU-Mt 24:4. This is also very much in harmony with the last church age (the Laodicean). Jesus showed that this age was the most deceived of all church ages-ref Rev 3:14-22.
FOR THAT DAY (the day of the Rapture)
SHALL NOT COME. In other words, the day of Christ, when the saints are caught up to Jesus, shall not take place, except some other event first transpires. That other event, which “must” take place, is:
EXCEPT THERE COME A FALLING AWAY (or apostasy, rebellion, defection from truth, forsake)
FIRST. Clearly, there is an event that must occur before the Rapture. It is a falling away of Christians from Jesus, His Word, from truth. It is multitudes of people leaving or forsaking the faith of Jesus Christ, a departure from the truth replaced by religious deception, even rebellion against God’s Word. This is all in complete harmony with Mt 24, Mk 13, and Lk 21. The lukewarm, wretched, blind, and naked Laodicean church, of Rev 3:14-22, that will be spit out, also reflects this. It is the church that will not teach sound doctrine; its people will not endure sound doctrine, but rather choose to listen to teachers that say what their ears and flesh desire to hear. This is also in harmony with how it was in the days of Noah. It is written, AND GOD LOOKED UPON THE EARTH, AND, BEHOLD, IT WAS CORRUPT; FOR ALL FLESH HAD CORRUPTED HIS WAY UPON THE EARTH-Gen 6:12. HE THAT HATH AN EAR, LET HIM HEAR WHAT THE SPIRIT SAITH UNTO THE CHURCHES-Rev 3:22. It might be asked, “Does anyone have an ear to hear and understand such things in these latter days?”
Satan very skillfully has embedded in many people’s minds that revival is coming prior to the Rapture and Tribulation. This is opposite of the truth, which states there will be a “falling away.” Unknown to most clergy and people, the “falling away” is nearing completion. Churches may have many people, but very few of these are truly following Jesus. Many profess Jesus, but follow deception and “self.”
Thus, Paul is exhorting them not to worry and not to be deceived. The Rapture will not come until the falling away occurs first. After the falling away and the Rapture, then
THAT MAN OF SIN (or lawlessness) (shall)
BE REVEALED, THE SON OF
PERDITION (or the man doomed to destruction-NIV). The man of sin is the Antichrist. He shall not be revealed until after the
falling away and the Rapture. (The
son of perdition is another name given to the Antichrist. This same name was also used for Judas in
Jn 17:12.) This confirms that
the Antichrist is alive on the earth somewhere prior to the Rapture,
but he is not revealed until the falling away and the Rapture transpire.
2:4. WHO OPPOSETH AND EX-ALTETH HIMSELF ABOVE ALL (or over everything) THAT IS CALLED GOD, OR THAT IS WORSHIPED (or that people call a god or make an object of worship; he will put himself above them all-JNT259); SO THAT HE AS GOD SITTETH IN THE TEMPLE OF GOD, SHEWING HIMSELF (or proclaiming) THAT HE IS GOD. T.
2:4. The Antichrist WHO OPPOSETH
AND EXALTETH HIMSELF ABOVE ALL (or over everything)
THAT IS CALLED GOD, OR THAT IS WORSHIPED (or that people call a god or make an object of worship; he will put himself above them all-JNT259).
Seven things about the Antichrist should
be noted in this verse.
THAT HE IS GOD. The Antichrist will proclaim himself to be God.
These seven things occur during the Tribulation.
2:5. REMEMBER YE NOT (or don’t you remember), THAT, WHEN I WAS YET WITH YOU, I TOLD YOU THESE THINGS? P.
2:5. REMEMBER YE NOT (or don’t you remember),
THAT, WHEN I WAS YET WITH YOU, I TOLD YOU THESE THINGS? Paul had apparently placed great emphasis on these things, when he was with the Thessalonians. Here, he is emphasizing these points and reminding them of what he had said. It is as if he is saying, “Why are you being deceived by false teachers? Why do you have doubts? Don’t you remember, I told you these things?” First Thessalonians contains many references to “these things” that he had told them.
2:6. AND NOW YE KNOW WHAT WITHHOLDETH (or what is restraining, or is holding him back) THAT HE MIGHT BE REVEALED IN HIS (proper) TIME. P, LD, Rap, BT.
2:6. AND NOW YE KNOW. The people are being told that they know something. That something is
WHAT WITHHOLDETH (or what is restraining, or is holding him back). Paul must have explained clearly what it was that was withholding the Antichrist from coming forth.
He is assuring the saints that the Antichrist is still being held back from being revealed until something happens. That something is very clearly stated. Verses 1-3 give an order of events.
First, there had to come a falling away. Religious deception was also alluded to.
Second, the saints had to be gathered to Jesus in the Rapture.
Third, the Antichrist could then be revealed.
By God’s Word, the saints could know what was holding back the Antichrist from coming forth. First, the falling away had to occur, followed by the Rapture. Before these events, the Antichrist could not be revealed. Once the Antichrist is revealed, which is seal one, then the confirming or signing of the covenant (or agreement, or treaty) with Israel can take place-ref Dan 9:27. This begins the Tribulation.
THAT HE (the Antichrist)
MIGHT BE REVEALED IN HIS (proper)
is a specific time for the Rapture to happen. There is a specific time for the Antichrist
to be revealed.
2:7. FOR THE MYSTERY OF INIQUITY (or secret power of lawlessness) DOTH ALREADY WORK (or is already at work): ONLY HE WHO NOW LETTETH (or is restraining) WILL LET, UNTIL HE BE TAKEN OUT OF THE WAY (or the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way-NIV). P, LD, Rap, BT.
2:7. FOR THE MYSTERY OF INIQUITY (or secret power of lawlessness)
DOTH ALREADY WORK (or is already at work). The mysterious, hidden power that is behind wickedness and sin and the planned coming forth of the Antichrist is already working to accomplish its purpose. Satan and his kingdom are already at work.
ONLY “HE” WHO NOW LETTETH (or is restraining)
WILL LET (or will continue to do so-NIV),
UNTIL “HE” BE TAKEN OUT OF THE WAY.
To paraphrase this verse, it is saying that someone (“he”) is holding back (or restraining) the Antichrist from being made known (or revealed), until that someone (“he”) is removed (or taken) out of the way.
The “he,” in this verse, is much debated among Bible scholars. Some say, the “he” represents the church. Others say, the “He” represents the Holy Spirit. Still others say, the “He” represents the restraining power of the Holy Spirit that is in the believers. There are other opinions as well.
There is no question that the Holy Spirit will remain on the earth, for people cannot be saved apart from Him. Multitudes will be saved during the Tribulation, which follows the Antichrist coming forth. Thus, it would appear that the “He” represents the restraining power of the Holy Spirit in the believers. The Holy Spirit does appear to be holding back the Antichrist from being revealed; however, there is a day coming when He will let (or allow) the Antichrist to come forth. “He be taken out of the way,” perhaps, means that His restraining power will be taken out of the way. Thus, the Scriptures are fulfilled.
As a result, when the church is removed in the Rapture, the Antichrist should immediately be revealed and initiate his plan to dominate the world.
Just prior to the Tribulation, the true church (consisting of converted, born-again believers that have put their trust in Jesus Christ) is removed.
Multitudes of saints (who get saved during the Tribulation) will be given into the hand of the Antichrist. They will not have power to stand against him. Many will be martyred, because of their faith in Jesus Christ. The church must be removed before the Antichrist can come forth.
2:8. AND THEN SHALL THAT WICKED (or lawless one) BE REVEALED, WHOM THE LORD (Jesus) SHALL CONSUME (or overthrow, or slay) WITH THE SPIRIT (or breath) OF HIS MOUTH, AND SHALL DESTROY WITH THE BRIGHTNESS (or glory) OF HIS COMING. Ref Mt 24:27. BT, A.
2:8. AND THEN, once the saints have been raptured,
SHALL THAT WICKED (or lawless one), which is the Antichrist,
BE REVEALED. The Antichrist will be allowed to come forth and confirm a covenant with Israel, which begins the Tribulation.
Now, the time shifts to immediately after the Tribulation. Jesus returns in power and great glory. At that time, the Antichrist shall be consumed. The verse continues,
WHOM THE LORD (Jesus)
SHALL CONSUME (or overthrow, or slay, or execute)
WITH THE SPIRIT (or breath)
OF HIS MOUTH, AND SHALL DESTROY WITH THE BRIGHTNESS (or glory)
HIS COMING. Jesus speaks the Word, and the Antichrist
shall be destroyed. When the
Lord returns, it will be as the LIGHTNING COMETH OUT OF THE EAST, AND
SHINETH EVEN UNTO THE WEST-Mt 24:27.
It appears that there will be some sort of a flash of intense
light. God is light. The Antichrist shall be destroyed with the brightness or glory
of the return of Jesus Christ.
2:9. EVEN HIM (or this man, the lawless one), WHOSE COMING IS AFTER (or in accordance with) THE WORKING OF SATAN WITH ALL POWER (to work all kinds of false miracles-JNT260) AND SIGNS AND LYING WONDERS. Ref Rev 13:2; Mt 12:39. BT, T.
2:9. EVEN HIM (or this man, or the lawless one), which is the Antichrist,
WHOSE COMING IS AFTER (or in accordance with)
THE WORKING OF SATAN. God does not give the Antichrist his power: Satan does. The Antichrist’s coming is a result of the works of Satan. As it is written, THE DRAGON GAVE HIM HIS POWER, AND HIS SEAT, AND GREAT AUTHORITY-Rev 13:2.
WITH ALL POWER (to work all kinds of false miracles-JNT260). This will be beyond human ingenuity and ability. It will be supernatural.
AND SIGNS. These are meant to persuade or prove to people that the Antichrist is really God and that he is telling the truth.
AND LYING WONDERS. These will attract attention and cause people to be amazed. The Antichrist will have the power of his father, Satan, to do all kinds of signs and false miracles to convince people that he is God.
Jesus said, AN EVIL AND ADULTEROUS GENERATION SEEKETH AFTER A SIGN-Mt 12:39.
Verses 10-12 all go together.
Verses 10-12 all go together.
2:10. AND WITH ALL DECEIV-ABLENESS OF UNRIGHTEOUSNESS IN THEM THAT PERISH (or in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing-NIV, or He will enable him to deceive, in all kinds of wicked ways, those who are headed for destruction-JNT204); BECAUSE THEY RECEIVED NOT (or refused) THE LOVE OF THE TRUTH, THAT THEY MIGHT BE SAVED. LD, N.
2:10. AND WITH ALL DECEIVABLENESS (or it may be said—deception)
OF UNRIGHTEOUSNESS IN THEM THAT PERISH (or in every sort of “evil that deceives” those who are perishing-NIV; or He [God] will enable him [the Antichrist] to deceive, in all kinds of wicked ways, those who are headed for destruction-JNT261);
BECAUSE THEY RECEIVED NOT (or refused)
THE LOVE OF THE TRUTH (or to love the truth),
THEY MIGHT BE SAVED. (Note commentary with v.12.)
2:11. AND FOR THIS CAUSE (or reason) GOD SHALL SEND THEM (a) STRONG (or powerful) DELUSION (causing them to go astray-JNT262), THAT THEY SHOULD BELIEVE A (or the) LIE. T.
2:11. AND FOR THIS CAUSE (or reason)
GOD SHALL SEND THEM (a)
STRONG (or powerful)
DELUSION (causing them to go astray-JNT262),
THAT THEY SHOULD BELIEVE A (or the)
commentary with v.12.)
2:12. (The result will be) THAT THEY ALL MIGHT BE DAMNED (or condemned) WHO BELIEVED NOT THE TRUTH, BUT HAD (taken their) PLEA-SURE (or delighted) IN UNRIGHT-EOUSNESS (or wickedness). LD, T.
2:12. (The result will be) THAT THEY ALL MIGHT BE DAMNED (or condemned)
WHO BELIEVED NOT THE TRUTH, BUT HAD (taken their)
PLEASURE (or delighted)
IN UNRIGHTEOUSNESS (or wickedness).
As stated above, verses 10-12 all go together. They appear to be addressing the people of the last church age (the Laodicean). This is the church age that we are presently in, which will end with the Rapture. These verses are a very serious warning to these people.
This message shows that the unrighteousness and evil in these people shall deceive them, because they would not receive God’s Word—Jesus (or the love of the truth, or to love the truth) so that they could be saved.
This grave warning goes forth
to those people that would not receive God’s Word (or the love of the truth).
They would not believe the truth of God’s Word that they might be saved,
but had pleasure, or delight, or fun, or enjoyment in doing or practicing sin, wickedness, or unrighteousness.
It might be paraphrased in this way. God is issuing this fearsome warning to all that choose to reject Jesus, because they have more pleasure in doing wickedness.
When the Antichrist comes forth, God Himself will send those people a strong delusion (or strong thoughts) so that the lie of the Antichrist will be perceived as the truth and the truth of God’s Word, perceived as a lie.
This is done so they will not be able to be saved, but will perish for eternity.