An evil entity called the Antichrist will rise to power. He will deceive almost everybody. We Christians need to stand firm in Jesus Christ. [UPDATED]
VERSE 1. Now, brothers, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to him, we ask you
we ask you. The triumphal return of Jesus Christ is a marvelous event. About it, Paul has some very important guidance for them.
VERSE 2. not to be quickly shaken in your mind, and not be troubled, either by spirit, or by word, or by letter as if from us, saying that the day of Christ has already come.
not to be quickly shaken in your mind. They are not to get excited or alarmed if they hear certain news.
either by spirit. Perhaps somebody will claim to have received a spiritual revelation or prophecy.
or by word. Perhaps a rumor will spread through the gossip network.
or by letter as from us. Perhaps somebody will write them, pretending to be an apostle.
saying that the day of Christ had come. This is precisely what they are to guard against: a claim that the Day of the Lord has arrived.
VERSE 3. Let no one deceive you in any way. For it will not be, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of destruction,
Let no one deceive you in any way. If somebody claims that the Day of the Lord has already arrived, that person is a deceiver.
We cannot let ourselves be duped by them, no matter how credible they seem.
For it will not be, unless. There are several events that must be completed prior to the triumphal return of Jesus Christ:
the departure comes first. The Greek word for “departure” is ἀποστασία (“apostasia”). It means a widespread apostasy, a revolt, a rebellion, a vast departure.
and the man of sin is revealed. There will be a moment when the lawless one is revealed to the world. This is the Rebel, the Lost One, the Antichrist, the Enemy.
VERSE 4. he who opposes and exalts himself against all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, setting himself up as God.
exalts himself. The Enemy claims to be much greater than anybody else.
or that is worshiped. The Enemy claims to be greater than anything that is worshipped.
he sits as God. The Enemy enthrones himself in the sanctuary and claims to be God.
Daniel 11:36. The king will do according to his will. He will exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and will speak marvelous things against the God of gods. He will prosper until the indignation is accomplished; for that which is determined will be done.
I told you these things. These teachings were not a surprise. Paul had already been teaching them in previous years.
VERSE 6. Now you know what is restraining him, to the end that he may be revealed in his own season.
you know what is restraining him. There are forces at work to prevent the Enemy from appearing on the world stage before his appointed time.
VERSE 7. For the mystery of lawlessness already works. Only there is one who restrains now, until he is taken out of the way.
the mystery of lawlessness already works. The forces leading up to the great apostasy are already at work already, but in secret.
there is one who restrains now. For the moment, the Enemy is being restrained. Possibly the Holy Spirit is the one that is restraining the Enemy. But at some point, that restraining power will be removed.
VERSE 8. Then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will kill with the breath of his mouth, and destroy by the manifestation of his coming;
Then the lawless one will be revealed. When the restraint is lifted, the Enemy will finally be revealed to the world. The Bible does not give us the identity of the Enemy.
the Lord will kill with the breath of his mouth. Even though the Enemy will seem to have limitless power and control the destiny of the planet, he will be nothing compared to Jesus Christ.
destroy by the manifestation of his coming. The Enemy and all his works will be destroyed by the glorious appearance of Jesus Christ when he returns.
VERSE 9. even he whose coming is according to the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
according to the working of Satan. The workings of the Enemy are in accord with the workings of Satan himself. Satan’s workings are counterfeits of what God does. What the enemy does are counterfeits as well.
power. The Enemy performs miracles. They evoke a sense of power. But they are counterfeits.
signs. The Enemy does signs. They evoke a sense of cosmic significance. But they are counterfeits.
lying wonders. The Enemy does wonders. They evoke awe. But they are counterfeits.
VERSE 10. and with all deception of wickedness for those who are being lost, because they didn’t receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
all deception of wickedness. The Enemy will convince most people that he has divine power. To most people, he will seem to be God.
for those who are being lost. Christian believers will not be deluded by the Enemy and his counterfeit powers.
believe a lie. When people refuse to explore the truth, God lets them explore wickedness. We have complete freedom of choice. We can do anything we want.
Hosea 7:3. They make the king glad with their wickedness, and the princes with their lies.
Nahum 3:1. Woe to the bloody city! It is all full of lies and robbery—no end to the prey.
Romans 1:25. who exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.
2 Thessalonians 2:11. Because of this, God sends them a working of error, that they should believe a lie;
VERSE 12. that they all might be judged who didn’t believe the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
had pleasure in unrighteousness. Those who embrace the Enemy will discover that they had embraced evil. Their choice will catch up with them.
VERSE 13. But we are bound to always give thanks to God for you, brothers loved by the Lord, because God chose you from the beginning for salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief in the truth,
always give thanks to God for you. Paul was thankful for them.
God chose you from the beginning. God selects people to be saved:
- Does God select everyone to be saved?
- Or only certain people?
- If God has not selected a specific individual, is it even possible for that individual to be saved?
VERSE 14. to which he called you through our Good News, for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
VERSE 15. So then, brothers, stand firm and hold the traditions which you were taught by us, whether by word or by letter.
by word. They were to stand firm in what Paul had taught them when he was with them.
by letter. They were to stand firm in the writings of the New Testament.
VERSE 16. Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace,
VERSE 17. comfort your hearts and establish you in every good work and word.
Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.