Prophecy / Uncategorized

Re-examining 1 Thessalonians 4:13-5:11 and 2 Thessalonians 2:1-10

My point in this post is to encourage a fresh look at the passages mentioned in the title. Here are three questions:

  1. What happens when we read 1 Thes. 4:13-5:11 without chapter divisions?
  2. Why would it be reassuring to the Thessalonian believers that they had not missed being gathered together at Jesus coming since the day of the Lord had not happened yet?
  3. What constitutes the “revealing” of the anti-Christ?

1 Thes. 4:13-5:11

13 Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. 14 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. 15 According to the Lord’s own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till 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 each other with these words.

5   Now, brothers, about times and dates we do not need to write to you, 2 for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. 3 While people are saying, “Peace and safety,” destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.

4 But you, brothers, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief. 5 You are all sons of the light and sons of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness. 6 So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert and self-controlled. 7 For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night. 8 But since we belong to the day, let us be self-controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet. 9 For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. 10 He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him. 11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

 

2 Thes. 2:1-12

2   Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers, 2 not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by some prophecy, report or letter supposed to have come from us, saying that the day of the Lord has already come. 3 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. 4 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.

5 Don’t you remember that when I was with you I used to tell you these things? 6 And now you know what is holding him back, so that he may be revealed at the proper time. 7 For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way. 8 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. 9 The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders, 10 and in every sort of evil that 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.

 

20 thoughts on “Re-examining 1 Thessalonians 4:13-5:11 and 2 Thessalonians 2:1-10

  1. Hi Pastor! Still loving your facebook series. Here’s are my comments for today:

    Tell me if I’m being too simplistic here. Regarding 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12, if I am to assume that the rapture is “our being gathered to Him” then it’s tied directly to the “day of the Lord” If that is true then it has to occur after the “man of lawlessness is revealed”.

    Now when could that occur? You state that it is when the “abomination that causes desolation” occurs. However, for the discerning Christian who is watching and looking, can it be when according to Revelation 13:3 “One of the heads of the beast seemed to have had a fatal wound, but the fatal wound had been healed. The whole world was filled with wonder and followed the beast?” I would think that the whole world would not be in “wonder” and follow the beast after he goes into the temple to declare himself god and all hell breaks loose. It would have to happen before when the world is enamored with the great solutions to the world’s problems that this man will probably solve. i see the supernatural healing as akin to JFK suddenly rising out of his bed after everyone saw the horrific mortal wounds to his head. Anyway, the mortal head wound could be prior to the “abomination that causes desolation”

    Anyway, getting back to the day of the Lord. I’m a little confused. If it happens right after the first 3 1/2 years and we are to assume that we are not appointed to suffer wrath then the rapture is pre-wrath. if the day of the lord is at the end of the last 3 1/2 year period then the rapture is post-tribulation. So, what is your position Pastor? Is the day of the Lord at the midpoint of Daniel’s 70th week or at the end?

    Note regarding Rev.13:3. It is my understanding that the Book of Revelation is not in chronological order therefore It could be before Rev 8 when God’s wrath is poured out.

    Anyway, just my thoughts.

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      • Pastor,

        I think I’m not a pre-tribulation rapture believer anymore. Just considering 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4 alone makes it hard to believe in the pre-tribulation view. It does not seems complicated at all.

        For the time being I’m leaning toward the pre-wrath view, but I’m going to keep digging in and revisit some of the arguments I’ve read supporting the pre-trib view. I might even dig out my old “Late Great Planet Earth” book.

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          • Pastor Scott

            So I’m trying to dig in further to see if I can remove the pre-trib rapture possibility in my mind. If the “man of lawlessness” is revealed at the beginning of Daniel’s 70th week, then the day of the Lord will be at the same time (and the pre-trib rapture). However, I did a search of all the scriptures that include “Day of the Lord” and they pretty much all describe the outpouring of God’s wrath after the day of the Lord. I don’t believe that in the first 3 1/2 years God will be pouring out His wrath (a wrath so bad that the days have to be cut short).

            Anyone else out there (who is not named Pastor Scott) have any pre-tribulation rapture arguments that I should be considering?

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            • Glenn, in my opinion, the “revealing” does not happen at the treaty but rather at the abomination of desolation.

              Also, the word “day” should be taken to mean an era or season or period of time. Just FYI

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              • Thanks Pastor!

                I think I’m coming to that conclusion myself about the timing of the “revealing”.

                I’m trying to settle on my beliefs about the rapture without simply accepting your arguments (no offence). I need to test everything in my own mind. You said it yourself “don’t believe something based upon your favorite internet preacher” Or something like that. At some point I have to own my beliefs for myself and be able able to defend my beliefs with scripture.

                I think I’m getting there (pre-wrath position) thanks to your ability to encourage all of us into deeper thinking and study concerning this important study.

                Thank you Pastor. This is a fun study for me.

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                • Sorry Pastor I think I’m posting too much, but I have a question regarding 2 Thessalonians 2:3 “Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs……”

                  What is your understanding of what the “rebellion” is about? Is it non-believers or believers who have fallen away?

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      • Pastor I am really enjoying this teaching. So I believe what I am reading is that the rapture will occur at the end of the 3 1/2 year mark. Is that correct? Can you explain more about what the treaty is?

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        • Hi Anna! Well, I don’t think we really know much about the treaty. It seems that every generation has its own idea. I grew up hearing people say it would be a treaty between Israel and the Palestinians because that was a major concern. The world has changed much since then and so it could be any number of things. I still believe it will involved Israel and perhaps even a larger threat against it.

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  2. Pastor I am really enjoying this teaching. So I believe what I am reading is that the rapture will occur at the end of the 3 1/2 year mark. Is that correct? Can you explain more about what the treaty is?

    Like

    • Hi Anna! Well, I don’t think we really know much about the treaty. It seems that every generation has its own idea. I grew up hearing people say it would be a treaty between Israel and the Palestinians because that was a major concern. The world has changed much since then and so it could be any number of things. I still believe it will involved Israel and perhaps even a larger threat against it.

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  3. I really am enjoying everyone’s opinion on the time frame of Christ return. Going thru the study helps me realize that studying the word in depth helps answer our concerns regarding the end of Church age.
    I am still working on knowing whatever God has revealed to HIS people which gives me comfort. Thank you Pastor for this stimulating and needed study.

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  4. Pastor, I believe the rapture of the church is the event that will precede the revealing of the antichrist. The only force that can hold him back is the Holy Spirit. So, the presence of the Holy Spirit in the church is what holds him back. Once it gets out the way with us (the church), then the antichrist will reveal himself. That’s what I believe.

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    • Hi Paul! This would make you mid-trib which these days gets grouped with pre-trib because the actual tribulation is after the Abomination of Desolation.

      As far as the Holy Spirit being “that which holds him back” it is problematic since it is hard to see the Holy Spirit as being “taken out of the way.” What do you think?

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