The Rapture is a frequent topic in our home. The Antichrist, the Tribulation Period, false prophets and today’s false teachers are the center of many discussions. Last week we started part 1 of “LET NO ONE DECEIVE YOU,” today we will continue with part 2:

2 Thessalonians 2:5   Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things?

We remember from Acts 17:1 that Paul visited Thessalonica and helped “turn the world upside down,” and then travelled on to Berea, Athens, and Corinth. He is writing this Letter from Corinth. So he had verbally taught them, but since then, besides all the contradictory teaching being given to them since he left, they’ve also been fiercely persecuted. Between the false teaching and the suffering they were enduring, they must have thought the Tribulation Period had already begun. In troubles we all forget too easily and need to be constantly reminded of the great truths of our God. It is vitally important to stay focused by staying in God’s Word and by praying without ceasing.

2 Thessalonians 2:6   And now you know what is restraining, that he [the false trinity—the false god—Satan, Antichrist, and false prophet] may be revealed in his own time.

What is restraining Satan? The answer can be found when we consider the truth that God separates all lawlessness—all sin—from Himself. The Church which is indwelt by the Holy Spirit of God is what is restraining the Antichrist lawless one from hurting us right now! As soon as the Church is caught up together—or—gathered together with our Lord Jesus Christ in the air, this earth and its inhabitants will be left to the Antichrist to do as he pleases without restraint. By the Father’s will the Lord Jesus Christ sent the Holy Spirit down to this earth from heaven (Acts 2:2) and He remains here in each and every believer—the Church—and will return to the kingdom of God in heaven with us.

2 Thessalonians 2:7   For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way.

The mystery of lawlessness is not yet fully manifested; but it will be when the Antichrist is freed from restraint. It’s important to notice the pronouns in this verse. Notice the upper case “H”. He who now restrains will continue to restrain the spirit of Antichrist which is already in the world. The Holy Spirit is indwelling the church and indwelling every believer—and it is He—the Holy Spirit who is restraining Satan and the Antichrist—until He—the Holy Spirit—is taken out of the way—that is—at the Rapture with the Church. / The Church will be the salt of the earth until the Rapture.

2 Thessalonians 2:8   And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming.
1 John 2:18; 4:3   2:18Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour. 4:3And every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world.

The spirit of the Antichrist is now already in the world. The previous verse in 1 John tells us that only those who are of God will confess that Jesus Christ is God who has come in the flesh. This is one way we can keep from being deceived. If they do not confess that Jesus is God who has come in the flesh, then, beloved, do not let them deceive you. / In Revelation, we learn that the Antichrist will come after the Rapture.

Revelation 4:1; 6:2a   4:1After these things [right after the Lord Jesus Christ spoke His final words to the churches before they are raptured] I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven. And the first voice which I heard was like a trumpet speaking with me, saying, “Come up here, and I will show you things which must take place after this.” 6:2aAnd I looked, and behold, a white horse. He who sat on it [the Antichrist] had a bow [a weapon for conquering].
2 Thessalonians 2:9   The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders,

The apostles of the Lord Jesus were energized by God the Holy Spirit. The false prophet and the Antichrist are energized by Satan. Here in v. 9 we read that the lawless one will have all power, signs, and lying wonders according to the working of Satan. The apostles were given these powers by our God—Jesus Christ.

2 Corinthians 12:12   Truly the signs of an apostle were accomplished among you with all perseverance, in signs and wonders and mighty deeds.
Matthew 10:1   And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease

(The very last verse of the Gospel According to Mark:)
Mark 16:20   And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs. Amen.

The Lord Jesus knew that Satan would have the Antichrist attempt to impersonate Him:

Matthew 24:5    “For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many.

A miracle indicates supernatural power but not necessarily divine power. It is important to note that not all miracles are of God. The devil and his agents can perform miracles. The man of lawlessness—the false prophet—will also perform them—a False trinity.

Revelation 13:12-15   12And he [the false prophet] exercises all the authority of the first beast [the Antichrist] in his presence, and causes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. 13He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. 14And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived. 15He was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed.
2 Thessalonians 2:10   and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.

If only they had believed. But now they are deceived by the miracles of the Antichrist.

2 Thessalonians 2:11   And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie,           

[God’s judgment will begin already. The lie is the Anitchrist’s claim to be God.]

John 5:43   “I have come in My Father’s name, and you do not receive Me; if another comes in his own name, him you will receive.”
2 Thessalonians 2:12   that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

Mankind who have heard the Gospel, but reject it, can have temporary pleasure in unrighteousness—and then—have eternal suffering in the Lake of Fire. This passage says those who’ve heard it, and reject it, will not have another chance after the Rapture.

2 Thessalonians 2:13   But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth,           

[Because of the fact that you accepted the responsibility to accept the truth, the Spirit set you apart from the world.]

2 Thessalonians 2:14   to which He called you by our gospel, for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.

[Our gospel is the Word of God. Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God {Rom, 10:17} We shall be like Him. {1 John 3:2b}].

2 Thessalonians 2:15   Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, whether by word or our epistle.

Stand fast and hold the traditions: has to do with keeping the divine doctrine—our God’s teaching—His Scriptural prescription of how to behave individually as unashamed courageous, strong Christians and how to conduct the assembling of ourselves together. One example of a NT church tradition: they broke bread on the 1st day of the week: Acts 20:7.

1 Corinthians 11:2b   keep the traditions just as I delivered them to you [the NT church].
2 Thessalonians 2:16-17   16Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, 17comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work.

The everlasting consolation is God’s gift of His Son for us to have everlasting life w/o having to go thru the Tribulation. Beloved, let no one deceive you. Paul’s prayer ends the chapter.

All Scripture quoted is taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1979, 1980, 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Author: Mike and Elfriede

For the past 15 years Michael Copple has studiously devoted his life to the Lord by preaching the Gospel and moderating Bible studies. He is a 1958 Eagle Scout, holds a B.S. degree in electrical engineering, and achieved the highest US Air Force enlisted rank of Chief Master Sergeant with over 26 years service, one year of which was with Forward Air Control duties in Vietnam. For three years he was the senior enlisted member of the US Air Force Academy Wings of Blue Parachute Team; he has performed over 2,000 parachute jumps and accumulated over 15 hours of freefall. During his parachuting years Mike experienced a mishap of being a “hung jumper” outside the aircraft, and serious parachute malfunctions like a deadly seesaw night jump entanglement with another jumper, and an 85 mph wind shear which almost took his life. This experience inspired and qualified him to author the novel Calling from the Sky. A former world-wide electronic service engineer for 16 years with a semiconductor equipment manufacturer, he and his wife Elfriede currently live in the Canadian Rockies surrounded by 6 National Parks. Besides studying God's Word, they both like to exercise, cross country ski, hike, garden, and walk their dog Kansas. Visit him at https://www.michaelcopple.com/

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