2 Thesselonians

(Previous Post was 1Thess)

A few months later Paul writes a second letter. Evidently, there was a letter or a message supposedly from Paul that someone forged in his name.  It was a lie.  So Paul writes to clarify. The first letter was about Jesus.  The second one is about the Antichrist “The man of sin” or the “lawless one”.

“Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers and sisters, not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by the teaching allegedly from us—whether by a prophecy or by word of mouth or by letter—asserting that the day of the Lord has already come.

Somehow a fake letter was received saying the Day of the Lord had already occurred even though the first letter had discussed that there would be a “gathering” or a “rapture”.  Of course, leaving them confused!  To make matters worse,  persecution has grown worse!  Emporer worship was rising and as they refused, they were being harshly persecuted for it. Paul reminded them that the Lord is JUST and will handle all matters in the end. We have seen through the scripture the Holy Trinity.  Satan has his Unholy Trinity.

Richard Schmidt - April 29, 2016 CHART

Paul reminds them “We talked about this…”  The antichrist WILL come.

 Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction. He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.Don’t you remember that when I was with you I used to tell you these things? And now you know what is holding him back, so that he may be revealed at the proper time. For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work;

BUT!!!  BIG BUT!!!

BUT the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming. The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10 and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.

So what is the takeaway?  What is the application of knowing this?

Stand Firm in your faith.

  • keep away from every believer who is idle and disruptive and does not live according to the teaching you received from us. 
  • follow our example! never tire of doing what is good
  • Some believers (look around people) are idle and disruptive. They are not busy; they are busybodies.
  • Take special note of anyone who does not obey our instructions in this letter. Do not associate with them, in order that they may feel ashamed. 15 Yet do not regard them as an enemy but warn them as you would a fellow believer.

This time he signs the letter with a special mark SO THAT you know the false letter was fake-don’t this is the one to hold onto!

1 Thessalonians

Letters often began with the author (3 in this case), followed by a greeting and thanksgiving.    This letter is specifically written to a group of people that assemble together ‘ekklesia’-meaning church.  In case the letter went to the wrong church, they address it to the Thessalonians.  Well, now that makes sense because you would not want this letter and the letters to the Galatians mixing up!

Paul, Silas, and Timothy,

To the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:

Grace and peace to you.

The Thessalonians were standing firm and exhibiting faith, love, and hope.  The purpose of this letter was:

  1. Thanks.  Paul was probably in Corinth when he wrote this and the report back to him encouraged him greatly.
  2. An explanation about why he had to leave so quickly and could not return.
  3. To encourage them as they faced hostility and suffering.
  4. To explain “fraternal love”
  5. To discuss the topic of sexual purity (they were sliding on that topic)
  6. Clarify the End days

You can feel the Joy in Paul when Timothy’s report back was:

In fact, when we were with you, we kept telling you that we would be persecuted. And it turned out that way, as you well know. For this reason, when I could stand it no longer, I sent to find out about your faith. I was afraid that in some way the tempter had tempted you and that our labors might have been in vain. But Timothy has just now come to us from you and has brought good news about your faith and love. He has told us that you always have pleasant memories of us and that you long to see us, just as we also long to see you.

He slips in a reminder about sexual immorality.  Paul knows the flesh is weak and this is the one area they were failing in.  But quickly commends their continued love for each other, and reminds them to live a quiet life, working hard so others will know they love the Lord through their way of life-not but beating them up with scriptures.

Chapter 4: What will happen to those who have died (fallen asleep) and are still alive when the Lord Comes back? 

There were many different theories floating around so this letter was written to clarify the issue and put their minds at ease.

13 Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. 14 For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 

We believe in a Resurrection of the Lord,  so we know that He will bring those who have died to Him BEFORE He returns. After that, a trumpet will sound.  If you read the OT with us,  you will remember the Trumpet signified a war was to begin and the Lord was with us.

15 According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.

‘Caught up’: the Latin translation of this verse used the word rapturo. The Greek word it translates is harpazo, which means to snatch or take away. 

(If you believe the rapture occurs after the first 3 1/2 or after the first 7: I am ok with that.  I am a Pre-trib girl because it says we will be caught “in the air”.  The second coming He firmly puts HIs feet on the Mountain).

Chapter 5:  written to believers (you)

  • acknowledge those who work hard among you, live in peace with each other
  • warn those who are idle and disruptive
  • encourage the disheartened
  • help the weak
  • be patient with everyone.
  • Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong
  • Rejoice always
  •  pray continually
  • give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
  • Do not quench the Spirit (let your fire for the Lord show)
  • hold on to what is good, reject every kind of evil.

23 May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through.


1 and 2 Thessalonians Overview


Paul's Second Missionary Journey - New Testament Maps (Bible History Online)

We are reading 2 books tomorrow!  We read briefly about Paul visiting Thessalonica on his second mission trip. (look at the map; when he stayed at Jason’s house).  He left after 3 short weeks and intended on going back but did not.  Paul feels terrible that he left so quickly and did not return.

Quick History: The city was founded in 316 BC.  The king of Macedonia named it after his wife, Thessaloniki, the half-sister to Alexander the Great.  The city became a hub for government and commerce.  After the captivity, many of the Jews dispersed and relocated in the Macedonia area. The city was the 2nd largest, the first being Athens.  About 200,000 lived there.

This is a time of great persecution to the believers. The Roman Emporer Cladius in power but soon his son Nero will be 😢.  Paul was very aware of the growing practice of persecution since he was ONE OF THEM once!  He now stood on the other side of the Cross.

This letter was to encourage the believers of Thessalonica AND to assure them of Christ’s return (eschatology).  Actually, Christ’s return will be mentioned over 20 times in these books.  Paul gives us a way of living that will prepare us for the Second Coming of Christ.  As persecution grows,  they need to hold on to Hope that a final judgment will occur for those persecuting them.

12. 1 and 2 Thessalonians | Jehovah Sabaoth