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THE GOOD NEWS MISSION
Source: I&II Thessalonians from The Banner of Truth Trust. ISBN 0 85151 162 7

Bible study of 2 Thessalonians

2 Thessalonians 112 Thessalonians 222 Thessalonians 331 ThessaloniansTh 1
Man of Lawlessness

2 Thessalonians 2

Verses 1-2, see 1 Thessalonians 1:1

Verse 3 We should pray and give thanks for our brothers and sisters in faith as Paul indicates in this verse. In this verse, Paul can happily thank the believers in the city of Thessalonica that their faith is growing and their love is increasing for one another. Faith and love should never stand still, the believer should grow from milk to solid food and from a baby to an adult in faith. This process lasts from the beginning of a person coming to faith (being born again) until his or her death.

Verse 4 The believers in Thessalonica experienced severe persecution and tribulations. It is unknown what exactly this entailed. Nevertheless, they were steadfast so that Paul could boast in other congregations of their endurance and increase in faith. The lesson for today's believer not to give up and give in to false teachings and weakening of the Word of God, the Bible. The believer must remain steadfast in the Word of God and show no tolerance and submit to the authority of God, when the government breaks and does not obey God's laws anymore, as in the case of abortion, euthanasia, etc.

Verse 5 Only then the believer will be worthy of the Kingdom of God, in which he or she may reign as king or queen together with the Lord Jesus Christ. Here on earth, the believer is already an ambassador of Jesus. If the believer does not fulfill his or her task on earth, and joins and walks with the world, he/she can never represent Jesus Christ and be co-ruler in His millennial Kingdom and on the New Earth. For he or she has not learned to submit to God's laws and commandments.
Being obedient to Christ already here on earth can bring suffering and persecution, yes, even death and torture in the Great Tribulation and standing steadfast to refuse the mark of the Beast.

Verses 6-7 The oppressors will receive judgment from God after their death. They will not go unpunished, but today, they still have time to repent. But in the end, they will appear before God's throne and all who have martyred, unrighteous judges and rulers will appear before God after their death and receive their judgment from God after Jesus appears with His angels, Matthew 24:30-31; Revelation 20:11-15.

Verse 8 Jesus Christ appears in flaming fire. Revelation 1:14 His (Jesus) eyes were like a flaming fire. Deuteronomy 4:24, Hebrews 12:29 For God is a consuming fire. He inflicts punishment on those who rejected the gospel and would not obey. To those who knowingly rejected Jesus Christ as Savior from sin and did not wish to serve Him as Lord.

Verse 9 These people from verse 8 will pay, namely according to Revelation 20:11-15 in the lake of fire for all eternity. There is no room for repentance after death. The human has to make his or her choice during life on earth. Internet, television, radio and other social media offer ample opportunity to learn about the gospel. Most people have no excuse of "I did not know". It is a conscious choice not to want to know anything. Consciously living the pleasant life and disobeying God. Consciously following the majority in rejecting God. Consciously denying that there is eternal life after death. Consciously denying responsibility for life on Earth and the management (nature, environmental pollution, caring for fellow human beings, punishing criminals, rapists, murderers, etc.) of the Earth.

Verse 10 When He (Jesus Christ) comes, on that day (Second Coming of Christ) Matthew 24:30: All the tribes of the earth will see Him with great power and glory. Revelation 14:14-20 The Son of Man comes with His angels to the earth to reap, to separate the disobedient from the obedient ones to God. Possibly with His saints, those who were taken up at the First Coming of Christ, the Rapture of the Church.
Jesus Christ will be looked upon in amazement by the nations of the earth and see whom they pierced, namely, the pierced hands and feet and the spear stabbed in the side by the Roman soldier at the crucifixion of Jesus on Golgotha.
The witness of the gospel has started with the Thessalonians and they have accepted it as Truth and have come to faith. Possibly Paul spoke (by the revelation of Jesus Christ) about the First Coming, see also 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18 (and Second Coming), while in Thessalonica.

Verses 11-12 It is the prayer of Paul, Silvanus and Timothy that the believers in Thessalonica may do all good work in Christ Jesus with power. That the name of the Lord Jesus may be glorified (testimony to unbelievers and believers) through the power of the Holy Spirit. The believer should make his or her calling worthy, read the Bible daily, intercede and pray daily, praise and glorify God. To show Jesus in his or her daily life. To grow in faith and love and to persevere in tribulations.

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2 Thessalonians 2

Verses 1-2 Paul calls on the Thessalonians to remain calm and not lose their minds about possibly his first letter (4:14-18) or a forged letter as being from Paul (from our verse 2 this chapter). The Day of the Lord is NOT yet. So keep calm, do not go and sell your possessions as if the Day of the Lord were coming soon. Jesus said that only God the Father knows this day, neither Jesus nor the believer know the day and the hour.
Verse 1 The coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our union with Him relates to the First Coming of Christ, which Paul speaks of in 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18. Matthew 24:40-41 The separation of the true believer (the wise virgin who is raptured) and the believer who lives in the world (the foolish virgin who remains).
Verse 2 The Day of the Lord has different names and occurs nineteen times in the Old Testament. It points to the day that God will judge the earth, see, among others, Joel 1:15; Zephaniah 2:2; Zechariah 14:1-5. In the New Testament 2 Peter 3:10: "But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a loud noise, and the elements will be dissolved with fire, and the earth and the works that are upon it will be burned up."

Verse 3-4 Paul now continues on the Day of the Lord (the Second Coming of Christ). Do not let anyone deceive you, i.e. do not let anyone deceive you that he or she knows when day this is going to happen. But Jesus has pointed to pay attention to the signs of the times, and those signs are very evident in our time and days. This verse says "for first the apostasy must come." We see that apostasy very clearly today. Governments which no longer respect God's Word. In the days of Paul, Roman law was respected, may I say they respected the 10 commandments. Today we see complete setting aside of God's commandments, marriage between man and woman, premarital sex, sex with animals, the ideology of genders, abortion, euthanasia, the constitution is set aside, God's existence is doubted, philosophy, psychology, and science take the place of the Bible, occultism, worship of Satan, Satanism, etc. These things were not fully addressed when Paul wrote this letter to the Thessalonians. Then Roman authority was still respected and the things we see today were still far off. The apostasy must come first, and will increase more and more during the Great Tribulation.
The man of lawlessness, the son of perdition, will be the leader of this apostasy and will be active and not passive (not apostasy but an active rebellion against God and Jesus). He is called man of lawlessness, not because he has never heard of God's law, but because he openly defies and rejects God's law.
The Man of Lawlessness:

  1. Has a close relationship with Satan and the beast out of the sea (Revelation 13:1).
  2. Speaks blasphemy (Revelation 13:5-6) for 42 months (3 1/2 years).
  3. Daniel 9:27 And he will make a strong covenant heavy with many for a week (=7 years of Great Tribulation); and for half of the week (= second half of the Great Tribulation) he will cause sacrifice and offering (in the temple) to cease.
    2 Thessalonians 2:4 And he enters into the temple, and exalt himself, and declare himself god.
  4. Wage war against the saints and overcome them (Revelation 13:7).
  5. All whose names are not in the Book of Life will worship him (Revelation 13:8).
  6. Suffers utter destruction when Jesus appears on the clouds (Revelation 17:8).
  7. Is an eschatological (regarding the end of the world) person.

Verse 5 Apparently Paul clearly spoke of the first and second Coming of Christ when he was in Thessalonica.

Verse 6 You, Thessalonians, and thereby we believers through this letter, know what is the cause which restrains the man of lawlessness. That are the prayers of the believers, the working of the Holy Spirit.
Now so that he may be revealed in his time. The time given by God. Now we see lawlessness increasing rapidly. His time has come and after the Rapture of the Church (no more prayers by the wise virgins, the believers left behind, the foolish virgins without the Holy Spirit are powerless?) the man of lawlessness will be able to reveal himself fully.

Verse 7 Already in the days of Paul lawlessness was already in effect, there were many antichrists, who openly rejected Jesus. But in no relation to today in which authorities openly reject God's commandments and seek to forbid evangelism and church. God's commandments are openly rejected and massively banned.

Verse 8 Zechariah 14:3-4 "Then shall Then the Lord will go forth and fight against those nations as when he fights on a day of battle. 4On that day his feet shall stand on the Mount of Olives which lies before Jerusalem" Then the Lord Jesus Christ will kill the lawless man with the breath out of his mouth and make him powerless. That will be the final end of the man of lawlessness, but also of all antichrists and their lawlessness through all ages.

Verses 9-12 On the other hand, all who follow the man of lawlessness, who follow the signs and lying wonders of satan and the man of lawlessness, they will perish forever. Because they have rejected the love of God and the love of Jesus who gave His life on the cross for the redemption of sin. And did not accept this truth by which they could have been saved. Their hardening causes God to harden their hearts in the end, like Pharaoh who saw the wonders of God and hardened his heart again and again. His heart was finally hardened by God. So it will be with the people who, despite all the plagues in the Great Tribulation (study the book of Revelation), continue to harden their hearts and continue to reject God's warnings and Love, finally God hardens their hearts and does not repent. For they took pleasure in iniquity. Their own self predominated.

Verses 13-14 But we Paul, Silvanus and Timothy thank God that you Thessalonians have come to the Truth after our preaching of the gospel. By God's grace you have accepted the gospel as Truth. And have you been delivered from the bondage of sin and deceit of lawlessness by the powerful working of the Holy Spirit. By letting the Holy Spirit work, follow your sanctification and break free from the bondage of the world and its lusts and deceit. And see your fellow humans the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ in your daily walk, grow in faith and love for one another.

Verse 15 Therefore stand firm in the faith, in spite of all persecutions and tribulations. Hold fast to the Truth, and do not be misguided by false teachers and false teachings. Hold fast to what we proclaimed to you, whether orally while we were in Thessalonica, or we teach in writing through our letters to you and other congregations.

Verses 16-17 Let the Lord Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit make you strong, comfort and strengthen your hearts in all good work and proclamation of the Word. God the Father has loved us and you through the Lord Jesus Christ who gave His life for us on the cross of Calvary. Through redemption and atonement for our sins. That is God's grace.

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2 Thessalonians 3

Verse 1 Furthermore, there is a good closing of this letter, in another translation it gives 'at last, there is still us left'. It only remains for us to ask, pray for us, Paul, Silvanus and Timothy in the battle against the powers of darkness and attacks on the proclamation of the Word, the Gospel. In short, pray for us workers of the Lord Jesus Christ, pastors, evangelists, missionaries, etc. Pray for the progress of the gospel, which is heard by the unbelievers. People remorse and repent. Confess that they are sinners and need Jesus as Saviour. So that they will live to the honor and glory of God the Father and Jesus Christ and under the control of the Holy Spirit, thus doing God's Will.

Verse 2 Pray for us that we will be kept from evil spirits who bring errors and evil people who taunt us and dismiss us as not proclaiming the Truth, in short making us bad. Because unfortunately not all churchgoers are faithful. False teachers are found in the congregation who do not proclaim the Word in all purity. Watch them, they are like wolves in sheep's clothing. They preach heresies. You recognize them because the fruits of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22) are not visible in their daily life and they weaken the Word of God and proclaim it differently.

Verse 3 However, God is faithful, if you place yourself under the control of the Holy Spirit and walk in faith (read the Bible and pray daily), He will strengthen you and you will grow in faith. Then you receive the weapons of the spiritual armor and He will keep you from satan and demons. The Thessalonians was a young congregation struggling to grow. Struggling against the powers of darkness, fanaticism, loafing, meddlesomeness, neglect of duty, laziness, defeat, etc. Therefore it was and is necessary for the believer to lead an active Christian life.

Verse 4 Paul, Silvanus and Timothy had taught them the active Christian life when they were in Thessalonica. It is opening up to the working of the Holy Spirit, so that the good work which Jesus Christ began in you, will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. (Philippians 1:6). This through your obedience to God's commandments. It is an admonition as well as a confidence that the Thessalonians let God work in them. It is a warning to every believer, otherwise the believer will fall prey to the powers of darkness. It is a daily conscious choice against sin, against the things of the world, saying no to temptations and living to the glory of God.

Verse 5 Only through the power of the Holy Spirit is one able to resist and live to the glory of God. It is the believer's love that works this out. As husband and wife try to please each other in a good marriage, so the believer should love and please God. That requires effort and persistence. Especially under persecution and torture. The death of Jesus for our sins, that is the motivation of our love. It was first God's love for us, now the believer has to respond with his or her love for God. Our persistence in the midst of persecution, suffering, disease, attacks, etc.
Perseverance in good works and proclamation of the gospel, prayer and Bible reading.
There should be no laziness and do not be confused by bad people (in the church at Thessaloninca) as if the Coming were just around the corner. See verse 12.

Verse 6 Do not associate with a brother or sister (visiting him or her, support in the behavior, leave it behind) who behaves irregularly. This commandment is given by Paul on the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ. Irregular behavior include laziness and being supported by the church or government (verse 11), not doing what is right (verse 12), detracting from what Paul taught, detracting from God's Word (verse 14), meddling, interfering in matters concerning the overseers.
Apparently the admonitions in the first letter did not have the desired effect. Now it was time for more serious interventions and discipline. Time for separation from this believer. Note that 'brother' is still mentioned. It is not a complete banishment, exclusion from the church, but the congregation should avoid him or her and leave the contact to the elders and pastor. It must be made clear that the members of the congregation do not agree with this irregular behavior and do not wish to follow his/her example.

Verses 7 and 8 Paul, Silvanus and Timothy set the good example when they were in Thessalonica. They have shown their good works. They had provided for their own livelihood and also preached the gospel. They worked during the day to support themselves and in the evenings and weekends they preached the gospel with all their effort.
How are we doing? Can unbelievers and believers see that our way of life is different from the people in the world? Do people see that we belong to the Lord Jesus Christ? Do we have Christian values and standards? Do we reject commandments that go against the Bible, God's Word?

Verse 9 Not as if they did not have the authority to be supported by the church. For a worker is worth his wages. But they wished to set as an example to follow, so as not to cause offense. They preach the gospel, the Word of God in all purity, as received by the Lord Jesus Christ, for free. The Word of God, all spiritual gifts, are free gifts from God. No payments of tithes and gifts for healing of diseases, the church service is free, one has free access to the church, the unbeliever is free to take cognizance of the Word of God through the church, evangelism, radio, television, Internet. The Bible is freely accessible and readable on the Internet. The commentaries and explanations of the Bible are free on the Internet. Nothing of expensive copyrights for gospel music. But piracy is a sin. Yes, payment for labor and necessary equipment is allowed. Necessary tools and equipment are expensive.
In the interest of the proclamation, Paul and his followers renounce their rights. He appeals to follow their example.

Verse 10 Paul repeats in this letter what he had said when he was with the Thessalonians: "If any man will not work, let him not eat", let that be a lesson to him or her. The irregulars could not claim that they had been taught otherwise. No reason to say, I give up my job, for the Second Coming of Christ is at hand, let the church sustain me, that I may preach (but the irregulars did not do this purely). They were engaged in what is not work.
For example: Someone who receives a good pension can safely receive travel and hotel expenses.

Verse 11 Possibly there were some in Thessalonica who had given up their jobs, proclaimed to brothers and sisters fantastic stories that the Coming of Christ would be soon or had already happened.

Verse 12 Paul calls to remain calm. To keep working calmly and keep his/her job and not to give up. This admonition/command comes "in the Lord Jesus Christ". This command was given directly by Christ Himself. By being obedient to this command, without they not irritating their fellow brothers and eating their own bread (=supporting themselves).
Today we live 2,000 years later when this letter was written. It is clear, therefore, why that command was given by Jesus, although He also did not know when His Coming would be. However, He knew that first the Church had to be formed and built.
Clear today are the signs that Jesus spoke of in Matthew 24:3-13. So yes, today we live in the soon Coming of Christ. August 2022 it is impossible to say how soon. Construction of the Temple in Jerusalem could be completed in 3 months, according to a Jewish rabbi. There is the fired Palestinian rocket that returned and destroyed a mosque. There are rumors that the Jihad shelled the mosque. Only God the Father knows the day of The Coming!
What does this mean for the Christian? Personally, I believe that we should remain calm. If you are sure that the Lord Jesus Christ is calling you and others are supporting you in this (financially and prayerfully), follow your calling. Let us support evangelism and missionary work in prayer and financially. Certainly those who receive a good pension, or otherwise for their livelihood, should vigorously promote the gospel. Remember, however, that it is the Two Witnesses and the 144,000 sealed ones from the twelve tribes of Israel who will proclaim the gospel of the Kingdom of God to the ends of the earth in the (first half?) of the seven years of the Great Tribulation.
Every believer has the task of proclaiming the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ for Redemption from the penalty of sin in Jerusalem (your family), in Judea (your neighbor), in Samaria (the world).
Some have the special calling as an evangelist, pastor, or missionary. Each of them needs a salary, their taxes and social charges have to be paid. As well as all materials in their labour. Sunday school materials, Internet preaching (payment of web servers and domains), boarding schools (orphans, raped children, poor) in the developing world, education and nutrition, etc. Translations of Bibles and commentaries. And so on.
Each of us is called by the Lord Jesus Christ to contribute in his or her own way. We should build in Heaven, soon our earthly treasures and possessions will end. But we must not become reckless, as Paul warns the Thessalonians. We must listen VERY CAREFULLY PERSONALLY what the Lord Jesus Christ tells us, calls and affirms by fellow brothers and sisters.

Verse 13 Be not weary to do good. Yes, even now churches are still being built in the third world. But also in the Netherlands, the Church de Wegwijzer in Almere, the Netherlands grew from 1 church to 7 municipalities. Set up Bible study groups. Explain the Book of Revelation.
Another translation of this verse is: Be not be misled. Do not let a few people who neglect their duty stop you from doing yours. Never grow tired of doing what is right, honorable and excellent.

Verses 14 and 15 If anyone does not wish to wish according to what the Lord Jesus Christ has revealed to me, Paul, and has been proclaimed to you by us, sign him or her, do not associate with him or her. Posible, this person may come to realize his or her error. Do not consider him or her an enemy, but reprove as a brother or sister (in Jesus Christ).
One would expect that after all his admonitions in Thessalonica and his letters, Paul would lose his patience and advises: exclusion from the church. It is not that far yet in this congregation, they are still seen as irregular brothers. Paul still calls for discipline, not yet harsh intolerance and radical actions. But in honesty and reproof in the first instance, but patience and above all love by the elders and pastor under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. They must lead to construction and not to destruction!
However, the irregular brother or sister must be marked (No welcome at Bible studies? Exclusion from church work). With the aim of bringing him or her back to obedience to the Word and God. Everything with love, because someone who is not yet an enemy must not become an enemy. No more wishing to be a part of the Kingdom of God, no more wishing to attend church.

Verse 16 It is the Lord Jesus Christ who gives peace in the heart of the believer. The peace of salvation, forgiveness of sins and eternal life. A peace when a person dies in Jesus as Saviour. Knowing that he or she will have eternal life with God the Father.

Verse 17 A greeting from Paul with his own hand, that is the mark, the authority of the apostle Paul, called and appointed by the Lord Jesus Christ personally. This letter has the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ. No one can say that "Ah, this letter is dictated by Paul, does not really represent Paul's thought or authority. By Paul's own greeting, this one has the authority.

Verse 18 Despite the admonition in this letter, know that the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ is sufficient for the forgiveness of sins. He loves you and bestows His grace.

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