from Lynda Lindsey
Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to Him, we ask you, brothers, not to be quickly shaken in mind or alarmed, either by a spirit or a spoken word, or a letter seeming to be from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come. II Thessalonians 2:1-2
Let no one deceive you in any way. For that day will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God. II Thessalonians 2:3-4
So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the traditions that you were taught by us, either by our spoken word or by our letter. Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace, comfort your hearts and establish them in every good work and word. II Thessalonians 2:15-17
Imagine receiving an invitation to a grand, celebratory feast resplendent with many courses and fine wines, held in a castle-like setting on a palatial estate. Ready to RSVP, you find no date on the response card. Instead, the invitation highlights certain occurrences that must first happen. What if you mistake the signs? What if the signs happened before you received the invitation? A confusing imaginary scenario is one thing; real life is another. Paul was dealing with a group of frightened, confused, and persecuted new converts who were misinformed about the Lord’s return.
Paul wrote to establish and ground the Thessalonians in truth: the Lord’s return with His mighty angels will be unmistakable! Paul issued warnings: be prepared to stand fast in truth, because rebellion and upheaval will precede Christ’s return. The man of lawlessness, the antichrist, the son of destruction will be revealed. He will oppose the true Christ and demand worship that belongs only to God. The restraints holding back the lawless one, once removed, will free him, backed by Satan, to exalt himself and perform false signs and wonders designed to divorce Christians from faith in Christ.
Be prepared. Don’t be shaken or alarmed. Know, and hold fast to spiritual truths, godly teachings, and traditions from God’s Word. Jesus, at His return, will come as judge to right every wrong. Jesus will slay the evil one with the very breath of His mouth. Rejoice; Jesus, by His sanctifying work in us, makes us worthy of His calling. Those who’ve received Jesus will not perish but have eternal life; none of His beloved children, chosen and called by Him, will perish. Be of good hope. Stand firm. Accept the Spirit’s comfort. Be deeply rooted, well established in every good work and word.