ND
2
THESSALONIANS
CHAPTER 2
Verses 1-8
“The Thessalonians were afraid!”
WHY?
WHAT WAS THE REASON FOR
2nd THESSALONIANS CHAPTER 2
• 2 Thessalonians 2:2 That ye be not soon
shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit,
nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the
day of Christ is at hand.
• Was it because the Thessalonian believers had
a fear that the Day of the Lord had begun?
• Remember the question in the opening slide
subtitle?
WHAT WAS THE QUESTION?
• QUESTION: WHY WERE THE
THESSALONIANS AFRAID? Was it because
they thought the Day of the Lord had begun? If
so, WHY SHOULD THAT BOTHER THEM?
• IT WOULD NOT BOTHER ME!
• I’m sure the Thessalonians were at least as
strong in their belief as I am, and probably
stronger. So why were they afraid?
SERIOUSLY!
• If I were to find out that I had to go through the
“Day of the Lord”, (a time when there will be
great trouble here on earth)…
• I would be excited!!!! Because that would mean
that Christ’s coming was just around the corner!
• I don’t think the Thessalonians were any less
committed than I am… so why would the
possibility that the “The Day of the Lord” had
begun, scare them?
BEFORE WE ANSWER…
• … that question. I want to remind you all of
something.
• Proverbs 25:2 It is the glory of God to
conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is
to search out a matter.
• God conceals things…. BUT…
IT IS THE HONOR OF KINGS
TO SEARCH THEM OUT
• Anybody got a king handy? I need some
help with scripture.
• Revelation 19:16 And he hath on his
vesture and on his thigh a name written,
KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.
• Jesus Christ is King of Kings and Lord of
Lords. If he is King of Kings then….
WHO ARE THE KINGS…
• … he is king over? Answer:
• Revelation 1:5-6 And from Jesus Christ, who
is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of
the dead, and the prince of the kings of the
earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us
from our sins in his own blood,
• And hath made us kings and priests unto
God and his Father; to him be glory and
dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
SO YOU ARE A KING!
• Jesus Christ has made you a king and
priest of God, our Father.
• So God now has millions of kings and
priests, and over these kings, is the King
of kings, Jesus.
• Wanna know what else?
THOUGH GOD HIDES THINGS
• We are fortunate!
• Why? Because…
• Amos 3:7 Surely the Lord GOD will do
nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto
his servants the prophets.
GOD DOES NOTHING…
• … without revealing it to his servants, the
prophets! Period!
• Therefore, there is nothing hidden that we
cannot find out…
• … and we, as God’s kings, are
empowered to find out the things God has
hidden! So on to Thessalonians…
2ND THESSALONIANS 2:1,2
• 1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the
coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by
our gathering together unto him,
• 2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or
be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word,
nor by letter as from us, as that the day of
Christ is at hand.
2 Thessalonians 2:3, 4
• 3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that
day shall not come, except there come a falling
away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the
son of perdition;
• 4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all
that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that
he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing
himself that he is God.
2 Thessalonians 2:5, 6
• 5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet
with you, I told you these things?
• 6 And now ye know what withholdeth that
he might be revealed in his time.
2 Thessalonians 2:7, 8
• 7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already
work: only he who now letteth will let, until
he be taken out of the way.
• 8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed,
whom the Lord shall consume with the
spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with
the brightness of his coming:
OKAY, WE BEGIN – 2 Thess 2:1
• Now we beseech you, brethren, by the
coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by
our gathering together unto him,
• Let’s see what Paul means when he says
“beseech”, above.
• First – the English dictionary
MERRIAM WEBSTER
• Beseech
• 1 : to beg for urgently or anxiously
2 : to request earnestly : IMPLORE
• Implore
• 1 : to call upon in supplication :
BESEECH
2 : to call or pray for earnestly :
ENTREAT
HOW ABOUT THE GREEK?
• The word “beseech” is translated from the
Greek word… “erotao”
• 2065 erotao {er-o-tah'-o}
• Meaning: 1) to question 2) to ask 2a) to
request, entreat, beg, beseech
• Origin: apparently from 2046 cf 2045;
• Usage: AV - ask 23, beseech 14, pray 14,
desire 6, intreat 1; 58
I like to check out origins
Origin: apparently from
2046 cf 2045
• 2045 ereunao {er-yoo-nah'-o}
[erotao]
• Meaning: 1) to search, examine into
• Origin: apparently from 2046 (through the
idea of enquiry); TDNT - 2:655,255; v
• Usage: AV - search 6; 6
• NOW LET’S LOOK AT 2046…
Origin: apparently from
2046 cf 2045
• 2046 ereo {er-eh'-o}
[erotao]
• Meaning: 1) to utter, speak, say
• Origin: probably a fuller form of 4483, an
alternate for 2036 in cert. tenses;; v
• Usage: AV - say 57, speak 7, tell 4, speak
of 2, call 1; 71
• NOW LET’S LOOK AT 4483…
Origin: probably a fuller
form of 4483
• 4483 r`e,w rheo {hreh'-o}
• Meaning: 1) to pour forth, to utter
• Origin: for certain tenses of which a
prolonged form ereo {er-eh'-o}, is used,
and both as alternate for 2036, perhaps
akin (or ident.) with 4482 (through the idea
of pouring forth);; v
• Usage: AV - speak 12, say, speak of 3,
command 1, make 1; 26
BESEECH IN FULL BLOOM
• All definitions and nuances.
• ENGLISH: to beg urgently, anxiously, to
implore, to call and pray for earnestly.
• GREEK: to question, ask, request, entreat,
beg, to search or examine into, to speak,
utter, or say… in a pouring forth.
WE DRILL A LITTLE FURTHER
• 2 Thessalonians 2:1 Now we beseech you,
brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus
Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,
• Next, we focus on the word, “by”.
• Whenever we do something “by” something, that
something is the standard, the litmus test.
• For example, when we do something “by” the
numbers, or “by” the book.
THE STANDARD
• The subject, the standard, the benchmark,
that we are going to measure everything in
the 2nd chapter of Thessalonians “by” is…
• 2 Thessalonians 2:1 Now we beseech
you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord
Jesus Christ, and by our gathering
together unto him,
AS IS APPROPRIATE…
• … the subject of chapter two is introduced in the
first verse. That subject is…
• 1. “the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ,”
• AND
• 2. “our gathering together unto him,”
WE WOULD SAY…
• … “Today I’m going to talk to you about…”.
• The subject is introduced before we begin
speaking on the body of that subject.
• God is no different.
SO THE SUBJECT IS…
• 1. “the coming of our Lord Jesus
Christ,”
• AND
• 2. “our gathering together unto him,”
DEFINITELY TWO ITEMS
• 1. “the coming of our Lord Jesus
Christ,”
• 2. “our gathering together unto him,”
• Now these two items could be two aspects
of the same event, or two different events
separated in time.
LET ME EXPLAIN…
• … and here, I am going to be forced to take a side road,
not because I want to, but because, as with any
important bible truth, such as the gathering together, or
rapture of the church, and Christ’s 2nd coming, mischief,
obfuscation, and confusion abound.
• First, there are three main views as to the timing of our
“gathering together unto him”, i.e., the rapture, and the
second coming of Christ. A fourth view came into
prominence during the 1990’s.
• I will briefly explain and demonstrate these four views
with some assisting illustrations.
FIRST, THE MILLENNIUM
• The word “millennium”, is derived from two
Latin words, “milus”, which means a
thousand, and “annum”, meaning year.
Literally, a one thousand year period.
• Scholars refer to a period that Revelation
predicts will occur in the future, following
Christ’s 2nd coming as, the “millennium”
REVELATION
• Revelation 20:1-3
• 1 And I saw an angel come down from heaven,
having the key of the bottomless pit and a great
chain in his hand.
• 2 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old
serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and
bound him a thousand years,
• 3 And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut
him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should
deceive the nations no more, till the thousand
years should be fulfilled: and after that he
must be loosed a little season.
MORE… REVELATION
• Revelation 20:4 … and I saw the souls
of them that were beheaded for the
witness of Jesus, and for the word of God,
and which had not worshipped the beast,
neither his image, neither had received his
mark upon their foreheads, or in their
hands; and they lived and reigned with
Christ a thousand years.
STILL MORE…
• Revelation 20:5-7 5 But the rest of the dead
lived not again until the thousand years were
finished. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed
and holy is he that hath part in the first
resurrection: on such the second death hath no
power, but they shall be priests of God and of
Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand
years. 7 And when the thousand years are
expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
SO… THERE IS THIS PERIOD…
• … still future, that is a thousand years in
duration, during which, Satan will be bound – not
allowed to roam.
• The first resurrection will have taken place at the
beginning of the thousand years. This is why
scholars place the thousand years after, or
starting right at, the second coming of Christ.
Why again, you may ask?
BECAUSE, AS WE READ
• The thousand years begins with the first
resurrection, and it is Christ who performs
this first resurrection, so he has to be
returned as these resurrected people are
going to live and reign with him.
• Where!
• On earth!
SO GOD’S WORD…
• … places Christ’s second coming right at,
on, or just before, the beginning of the
prophesied one thousand year period, this
period being called often the millennial
reign of Christ.
• Graphically it would look like the next
slide.
THE MILLENIUM
Note: My own research confirms a seven day “week” from Adam to the end of time, therefore I firmly support the
seven one-thousand year days from Adam until the end of Christ’s millennial reign which is then followed by a new
heaven and new earth, beginning an eighth day that has no end (eternal), or as some rabbis call it, “a time of not
counting”. This truth of the seven days is demonstrable by some obvious and some not so obvious scriptures,
however, proving that truth is outside the scope of this effort. That said, no harm is done by my illustrations
because whether you support such a doctrine or not, the historical fact that almost two thousand years -- or, 2
days, depending upon your understanding -- have passed since Christ’s ascension and Pentecost until the
present is unarguable. Further, Revelation is clear - as we have seen in our previous verses - that there is a
period up ahead of us, prophetically speaking, of one thousand years in length. Therefore, my illustrations can at
least be helpful in depicting the last two thousand years, and the coming millennium.
PRE… POST… or A… choo!
• There are three prominent views of the
millennium… the thousand year period
that we have been discussing.
• 1. 1st view is “PRE-MILLENIALISM”
• 2. 2nd view is “POST-MILLENIALISM”
• 3. 3rd view is “A-MILLENIALISM”
Note: I will often hyphenate a word, not because spelling requires it, but because I want to make a distinction.
1st VIEW… PRE-MILLENNIALISM
• The premillenialist view is this essentially:
• That the rapture of the church, the judgements
of Revelation, the antichrist, Armageddon, and
the second coming of Christ, must all have
already have occurred, or at least be coincident
with the beginning of the thousand years (the
millennium). And most importantly, that the
thousand years (the millennium) is still future to
us. There is more but I’m just giving the basics.
2nd VIEW… POST-MILLENNIALISM
• The postmillennialist view is essentially
this:
• That the thousand years (the millennium)
has already happened… that the thousand
years began counting two thousand years
ago, and that we are now living in a period
which is post-[past]millennial.
3rd VIEW… A-MILLENNIALISM
• The amillenialist view is this:
• That there is no “literal” thousand year
reign of Christ. That rather, the millennium,
and Revelations’ references to such a
period, are allegorical, and that the church
reigns presently on earth in proxy for
Christ.
FOR OBVIOUS REASONS…
• … I hold to the premillenialist position as it
fits scripture when scripture is viewed in a
literal sense and the prophecies are not
“allegorized” away. History confirms that the
thousand year reign of Christ has not
occurred yet, not to mention that scripture
indicates Satan is bound during this
thousand year period. World conditions
indicate that Satan is still active, not bound.
SO I/WE ARE…
PREMILLENNIALIST
• That is, we believe that the thousand-year
millennium is still future to us, and is a
prophecy yet to be fulfilled.
• That said, we must now deal with a period
commonly called, the Great Tribulation, or
the 70th week of Daniel chapter nine, a
prophetic seven year period which is still
future to us.
THE GREAT TRIBULATION…
• … is a time that will be like no other period in
history.
• Matthew 24:21-22 21 For then shall be great
tribulation, such as was not since the beginning
of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
22 And except those days should be shortened,
there should no flesh be saved: but for the
elect's sake those days shall be shortened.
THE GREAT TRIBULATION…
• … has obviously not occurred yet, but when will
it occur? Since the great tribulation is marked by,
and ends with, judgment… and scholars place
the second coming of Christ at the end of this
seven year period, right before, or right at, the
beginning of the one thousand year millennium
then…
• … the Great Tribulation (believed to be seven
years in duration) ends, just as the millennium,
or final thousand years begins at the 2nd coming.
AND IT LOOKS LIKE THIS
7 YEAR TRIBULATION
• Has it happened yet?
• Matthew 24:21 For then shall be great
tribulation, such as was not since the
beginning of the world to this time, no, nor
ever shall be.
• No!
SO THE TRIBULATION…
• … is future…
• Therefore we are…
• Pre-tribulational a-n-n-n-n-d…
• Pre-millennial
• Both the seven-year Great Tribulation and the
thousand-year millennium are future to us.
NOW, WE NEED TO GO
A LITTLE DEEPER
• Because… though all pre-millennialists agree
that the thousand year millennium is still future
to us, and that Christ's 2nd coming is still future
to us…
• They disagree as to the timing of the gathering
together, variously called the “catching away”, or
rapture. We must have the seven year tribulation
in view as we consider the various rapture
views.
CONCERNING THE RAPTURE
• There are three prominent views, and a
fourth not so prominent but more recent
view (CIRCA 1990), as to when the
rapture will occur.
• Each view has its dogged proponents,
faithful supporters, who will readily point
out how wrong the other views are.
1st A WORD ON THE WORD…
• … “rapture”.
• Before we get all exercised about the use of the
word “rapture”, and its lack of presence in the
bible, I would like to mention a few salient facts.
• Jerome’s translation of the Hebrew and Greek
scriptures into Latin, known as the Vulgate,
occurred following an order from Pope Damasus
I, in 382 AD.
RAPTURE cont’d.
• Jerome translated the following verse from the KJV…
• 1 Thessalonians 4:17 Then we which are alive and
remain shall be caught up together with them in the
clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever
be with the Lord.
• Using the Latin word “rapiemur”, which means a catching
or snatching away. In our verse above, the English
words “caught up” are translated from the Greek word
“harpazo”, which means the same thing, to catch or
snatch away.
JUST A LITTLE MORE ARCANE
INFORMATION ON “RAPTURE”
• Jeromes choice of the Latin “rapiemur” gives me no particular
heartburn as it does mean, as we said, to catch or snatch away.
• Furthermore, “rapiemur” is the indicative passive future plural form.
The present tense, active form in Latin is “rapere”, from which the
word “rapture” is derived. It means to snatch, grab, or carry off.
• (see http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/rapere).
• Sounds like “rapture” to me. But you know what, if you want to call it
the rapture, the gathering together, the great snatch, the catching
up, or even the abduction of the church, I’m not going to get all
twisted, as long as you understand the significance of the event and
no one is harmed or misled by your choice of words.
• Okay, enough of this digression within a digression. Let’s get back to
understanding the four views of the tribulation.
THE FOUR VIEWS
• The four views as to when the rapture
occurs, in relation to the seven-year Great
Tribulation are:
•
•
•
•
1.
2.
3.
4.
The pre-tribulation rapture
The mid-tribulation rapture
The post-tribulation rapture
The pre-wrath rapture
1st THE PRE-TRIBULATION
RAPTURE…
• … and it looks like this…
NOTE: Pre-tribulation rapture beliefs vary somewhat as to whether the rapture happens some unknown period of
time prior to the start of the seven year tribulation, or whether it happens right at the start of the seven years and
may even trigger the start of the seven year tribulation. Point is, all agree that the rapture precedes the Great
Tribulation and these folks would therefore be pre-tribulational in their view.
A WORD ABOUT IMMINENCY
• I was always told that the reason that I could
never be successful in discovering the timing for
the rapture of the church was because of
something called the doctrine of “immanency”.
• The doctrine known as “immanency” essentially
rests on the belief that Christ could have
returned at any time in church history from the
next day after Pentecost up to, and including,
our present moment.
THE PRE-TRIBULATION
RAPTURE with a twist
The doctrine of immanency represents that the
rapture could have occurred any time from
Pentecost until the present, and anytime in the
future, prior to the Great Tribulation.
MORE ON IMMINENCY
• I found, in my research, that the doctrine of immanency
is a contrivance. It exists no where in scripture clearly
stated but rather, is assembled through inference.
• There is no such word in the bible, nor words to that
effect.
• In the interest of not taking our current subject, the
Thessalonians fear, to far afield, I am not going to deal
with immanency here. Suffice to say that careful
examination will demonstrate the fallacy of the doctrine
of immanency. ‘Nuff said.
• (If you have questions on immanency… ask me)
NOW… THE MID-TRIBULATION
RAPTURE
• We have covered the 1st position, pre-tribulation, now
here is the 2nd. Mid-tribulation rapture. This view has the
rapture occurring half way through the seven years.
THE POST-TRIBULATION
RAPTURE
• The 3rd view, post-tribulationalism, has the rapture
occurring simultaneously with the 2nd coming. And
following the seven years when they end.
THE REDHEADED STEPCHILD
• 4th view, the pre-wrath rapture… why?
• Revelation 15:1 And I saw another sign in
heaven, great and marvellous, seven angels
having the seven last plagues; for in them is
filled up the wrath of God.
• Revelation 16:1 And I heard a great voice out
of the temple saying to the seven angels, Go
your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath
of God upon the earth.
SO WHY PRE-WRATH?
• Romans 5:9 Much more then, being now
justified by his blood, we shall be saved from
wrath through him.
• 1 Thessalonians 1:10 And to wait for his Son
from heaven, whom he raised from the dead,
even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath
to come.
• 1 Thessalonians 5:9 For God hath not
appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation
by our Lord Jesus Christ,
SO WHEN IS THE PRE-WRATH
RAPTURE?
The pre-wrath position is a view that sees the church
being raptured at a time that precedes the 2nd coming of
Christ by some months. That period of a few months is
the period where God’s wrath via the bowls and vials are
poured out upon the earth. The pre-wrath view envisions
that the “wrath to come” that we have been saved from is
God’s wrath, and God’s wrath is not poured out until the
final months of the seven year tribulation. Any wrath prior
to that is Satan’s wrath.
A side note: The seven year period commonly called
Daniel’s 70th week and the Great Tribulation needs a
slight correction in our understanding. While Daniel’s 70th
week is in fact seven years in length, the Great
Tribulation itself is the final, or last, three and one half
years of that seven year period. See next slide.
THE GREAT TRIBULATION IS
NOT SEVEN YEARS
Briefly, it goes like this: Dan 9:27 has the Abomination of
Desolation taking place in the “midst” of the final 70th week,
i.e., the final seven years still future to us. The Abomination
of Desolation is described by Paul in 2 Thess. 2:4 as being
the “man of sin” sitting in the temple. Jesus said in Matthew
24:15 that the Abomination of Desolation spoken of by
Daniel, standing in the temple, would be the trigger event
which starts the “The Great Tribulation”, as it is called, for
Jesus says when this abomination happens, he says in
verse 21 “For then shall be great tribulation”. So simply put,
THE tribulation does not begin until the man of sin enters the
temple and proclaims himself God, and that does not
happen Daniel says until the middle of the final seven years,
therefore, only the final three and one half years comprise
the Great Tribulation, not the whole seven.
The Great Tribulation
THAT’S THE BASICS OF THE
VARIOUS RAPTURE BELIEFS
• Now that you have somewhat of a mind
picture of the possible scenarios for the
rapture, let’s get back to 2 Thessalonians
2: 1-8, and Paul’s reason for writing this
section.
• The next slide is a repeat of an earlier
slide so that we may get back on track
with our intended subject.
DEFINITELY TWO ITEMS
• 1. “the coming of our Lord Jesus
Christ,”
• 2. “our gathering together unto him,”
• 2 Thessalonians 2:1 Now we beseech
you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord
Jesus Christ, and by our gathering
together unto him, [the second “by” is implied]
First question is…
• … are these two phrases two aspects of
one event? Or, are they two distinct
events? The answer lies in performing our
due diligence in the scriptures with respect
to research. The kind of thing that kings
do.
• The answer is set in concrete, but more on
that in a moment. For now, let’s look at our
next verse.
Paul beseeches by Christ’s coming
and the rapture…
• …that they quit getting all shook up.
• 2 Thessalonians 2:2 That ye be not
soon shaken in mind, or be troubled,
neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter
as from us, as that the day of Christ is at
hand.
MOST SCHOLARS AGREE…
• …that the NASB has the best and most accurate
translation for this verse as it reads…
• NASB 2 Thessalonians 2:2 that you may not
be quickly shaken from your composure or be
disturbed either by a spirit or a message or a
letter as if from us, to the effect that the day of
the Lord has come.
• The Thessalonians thought the day of the lord
was currently going on, NOT that it was just
about to start. They thought they were in it!
BACK TO THE KJV
• 2 Thessalonians 2:2 That ye be not
soon shaken in mind, or be troubled,
neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter
as from us, as that the day of Christ is at
hand [DAY OF THE LORD HAS COME].
• Whenever there is error in my thinking I
find these two conditions in varying
degrees – “shaken in mind” and “troubled”.
SHAKEN IN MIND
• 4531 saleu,w saleuo {sal-yoo'-o}
• Meaning: 1) a motion produced by winds,
storms, waves, etc 1a) to agitate or shake 1b) to
cause to totter 1c) to shake thoroughly, of a
measure filled by shaking its contents together
2) to shake down, overthrow 2a) to cast down
from one's (secure and happy) state 2b) to
move, agitate the mind, to disturb one
• To be “shaken in mind” is a momentary state.
TROUBLED
• 2360 throeo {thro-eh'-o}
• Meaning: 1) to cry aloud, make a noise by
outcry 1a) in the NT, to trouble, frighten 1b) to be
troubled in mind, to be frightened, alarmed
• Origin: from threomai {to wail};; v
• To be “troubled” in mind is more ongoing. The
initial shock of an event may be over, but we
have a continuing affect when we are “troubled”.
PAUL LOVINGLY BESEECHES…
• … the Thessalonians to not be shaken or
troubled, no matter the source of information, be
it spirit, word [as in prophecy], or letter, that the
Day of the Lord had begun.
• What is Paul going to use to get rid of their
“shaken, troubled,” minds? The truth! Error in
our thinking results in doubt, and doubt leads to
worry and fear, and fear results in our inability to
be at peace. Instead, we may find ourselves in
the conditions the Thessalonians experienced –
being shaken and troubled.
WHAT IS THE ANSWER TO
ERROR -- RIGHT DOCTRINE!
• So Paul set about correcting their doctrine,
which subsequently corrects their thinking.
• 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man
deceive you by any means: for that day
shall not come, except there come a falling
away first, and that man of sin be
revealed, the son of perdition;
PAUL STRESSES
• 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man deceive you
by any means…
• What were the means that had been used to
deceive them? One, or some, combination of the
following.
• 2 Thessalonians 2:2 That ye be not soon
shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit,
nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that
the day of Christ is at hand.
NOW! THE MEAT OF THE
MATTER
• 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man
deceive you by any means: for that day
shall not come, except there come a
falling away first, and that man of sin be
revealed, the son of perdition;
• Please notice the words… “that day shall
not come”
HOW IMPORTANT IS THAT
STATEMENT?
• “that day shall not come”
• That statement is HUGE, for it goes directly to
the Thessalonians problem! They were deceived
into thinking the “Day of the Lord” HAD come!
• No other statement is this section goes right to
the problem like, “that day shall not come”.
• Again, it’s HUGE! But wait! There is a problem!
PAUL’S HUGE STATEMENT…
• …the singular phrase that directly refutes the
Thessalonians error… is…gulp!
• IN ITALICS! IT’S ITALICIZED! [KJV of course]
• “that day shall not come”
• Italicized words are added by the translators!
ITALICIZED WORDS ARE…
• … NOT part of the God-breathed word but are
ADDED by the translators. Supplied, if, in their
opinion, the words are needed to make sense in
English.
• Am I to believe that the most direct refutation of
the Thessalonians' error -- concerning what they
believed to be the now occurring, “Day of the
Lord”, -- was not even made by God, but was a
translational addition as demonstrated by the
italicized words, “that day shall not come”?
HMMM – LET’S SEE
• The words, “that day shall not come”, are
not in any Greek MS. They have definitely
been added by the translators.
• I looked at 25 different Bible translations.
Of those 25, 21 of them all had the words
“that day shall not come”, or words to that
effect, added to verse 3. Four did not.
LET’S REMOVE THE
ITALICIZED WORDS
• First with the italicized words…
• KJV 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man deceive
you by any means: for that day shall not come,
except there come a falling away first, and that
man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
• Then without…
• KJV 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man deceive
you by any means: … for except there come a
falling away first, and that man of sin be
revealed, the son of perdition…
DO YOU SEE IT? THERE’S
SOMETHING MISSING!
• 2 Thessalonians 2:3-6 3 Let no man deceive you by
any means: for that day shall not come, except there
come a falling away first, and that man of sin be
revealed, the son of perdition; 4 Who opposeth and
exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is
worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of
God, shewing himself that he is God. 5 Remember ye
not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these
things? 6 And now ye know what withholdeth that he
might be revealed in his time.
• I’m not referring to the fact that the words are literally
missing because I removed them, but rather, something
is missing in the sense of the verses without those
italicized words. Reread the above if you need to.
LET’S LOOK AT THE FOUR
BIBLES THAT OMIT THE WORDS
• The Basic Bible in English
• BBE 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Give no belief to
false words: because there will first be a falling
away from the faith, and the revelation of the
man of sin, the son of destruction, [first before
what? This translation needs to end this verse
with: “before the day of the Lord come.”]
• Notice the bold words. They changed the
grammer in order to make it work without the
italicized words. They changed those bold words
from the KJV, et al, where it says, “except there
come a falling away first” - KJV.
THE DOUAY-RHEIMS
AMERICAN EDITION
• DRA 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man
deceive you by any means: for unless
there come a revolt first, and the man of
sin be revealed, the son of perdition…
• Notice how you are left hanging at the end
of the verse. You sense something is
missing but you do not know what.
Now – the NAB
• NAB 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no one
deceive you in any way. For unless the
apostasy comes first and the lawless one
is revealed, the one doomed to perdition,
• Again, we are left dangling as if we are
being set up to be told “something” but the
“something” is never revealed.
NOW THE FOURTH – YOUNG’S
LITERAL TRANSLATION
• YLT 2 Thessalonians 2:3 let not any one
deceive you in any manner, because -- if
the falling away may not come first, and
the man of sin be revealed -- the son of
the destruction,
• And here, for a fourth time, we are left
hanging, waiting for something we cannot
exactly identify.
BUT THE YLT IS CLEVER
• They, at least recognize they have missed
something in the sense of their translation.
• So what do they do? They fix it by adding
some italicized words two verses down!
They add these words… “the day doth not
come”.
• But where do they add them? Next verse!
LET’S LOOK
• YLT 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4 3 let not any
one deceive you in any manner, because - if the falling away may not come first, and
the man of sin be revealed -- the son of
the destruction, 4 who is opposing and is
raising himself up above all called God or
worshipped, so that he in the sanctuary of
God as God hath sat down, shewing
himself off that he is God -- the day doth
not come.
AND HOW DID THE KJV PUT IT
• 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man
deceive you by any means: for that day
shall not come, except there come a falling
away first, and that man of sin be
revealed, the son of perdition;
• So let’s tally up. We have 21 translations
that add the words “that day shall not
come”, or words to that affect.
THEN WE HAVE A TRANSLATION
• The BBE [Basic Bible in English] which
does not include the italicized words but
DOES change both the tense and voice to
cover for not adding the italicized words
[which is ineffective].
• In other words, they changed the word of
God so they would not have to add the
italicized words IMHO.
THEN WE HAVE TWO…
• … translations, the DRA and the NAB,
neither of which make grammatical
changes to hide the missing sense, nor do
they add the italicized words, but rather,
they simply leave us wondering what is
missing.
• Then there is the YLT, which adds the
italicized words in the next verse.
SO WHAT’S THE SCORE
• Twentyone translations who include in verse 3 the
words, “that day shall not come”.
• One, the BBE, that changes the grammar so you don’t
sense something is missing.
• Two translations, the DRA and NAB, who do not supply
the italicized words but are honest enough to leave you
with a sense that something is missing.
• And lastly, the YLT, which ends up adding the words at
the end of the next verse.
THE EVIDENCE IS…
• … overwhelming. The words, “that day
shall not come” should be added, and are
properly supplied by the translators.
• Well now wait a minute! If they BELONG
THERE, but were not PUT THERE,
originally, by God, then that means that
they were INTENTIONALLY left out by
God! WHY? Why would he do that?
ELLIPSIS
• A legitimate figure of speech.
• E.W. Bullinger, in his work, “Figures of
Speech used in the Bible”, says
specifically that the words, “that day shall
not come”, in verse 3, are a particular kind
of the figure, “Ellipsis”, whereby a whole
clause is intentionally omitted.
GOD, IN OMITTING…
• …the words, “that day shall not come”,
intentionally makes them a figure of
speech… and what is the purpose of a
figure of speech?
• TO GRAB OUR ATTENTION!
• IT IS GOD’S WAY OF SAYING, HEY!
HEY!! HEY!! HEY!!
• PAY ATTENTION!!!
• THAT DAY SHALL NOT COME!
• THAT DAY SHALL NOT COME!
• THAT DAY SHALL NOT COME!
WHAT WERE THE
THESSALONIANS AFRAID OF?
• They were afraid that…
• … THAT DAY … HAD COME!
• So God attacks their error with…
• THAT DAY… SHALL NOT COME
EXCEPT
• That day shall not come… EXCEPT!
• 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man
deceive you by any means: for that day
shall not come, except there come a
falling away first, and that man of sin
be revealed, the son of perdition;
SO NOW WE SEE…
• Before the “Day of the Lord” begins, some things
have to occur first. In fact, just by way of
information, a bunch of things have to happen
first, before the “Day of the Lord” can arrive. For
example…
• Joel 2:30-31 30 And I will shew wonders in the
heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and
pillars of smoke. 31 The sun shall be turned into
darkness, and the moon into blood, before the
great and the terrible day of the LORD come.
ANYTHING ELSE - YEAH
• Malachi 4:5-6 5 Behold, I will send you Elijah
the prophet before the coming of the great and
dreadful day of the LORD: 6 And he shall turn
the heart of the fathers to the children, and the
heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come
and smite the earth with a curse.
• Yup! Elijah is coming before the DAY OF THE
LORD.
ANYTHING ELSE – WELL… YEAH
• Isaiah 13:9-13 9 Behold, the day of the LORD cometh,
cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land
desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of
it. 10 For the stars of heaven and the constellations
thereof shall not give their light: the sun shall be
darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not
cause her light to shine. 11 And I will punish the world
for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will
cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay
low the haughtiness of the terrible. 12 I will make a man
more precious than fine gold; even a man than the
golden wedge of Ophir. 13 Therefore I will shake the
heavens, and the earth shall remove out of her place, in
the wrath of the LORD of hosts, and in the day of his
fierce anger. [THE DAY OF THE LORD]
ANY MORE – YEAH, SOME
• Revelation 6:12-17 12 And I beheld when he had
opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great
earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of
hair, and the moon became as blood; 13 And the stars
of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth
her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind.
14 And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled
together; and every mountain and island were moved out
of their places. 15 And the kings of the earth, and the
great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and
the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free
man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the
mountains; 16 And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall
on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the
throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: 17 For the
great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able
to stand?
THE BEGINNING OF THE…
• … “day of the Lord” will be marked by
tremendous signs in the heavens and on
the earth, so the arrival of the “day of the
Lord” will be evident – no guessing
needed.
• And let’s remember in the verses we just
read that we learned that the “day of the
Lord” is also the “day of His wrath”.
AND YOU MAY RECALL
• Romans 5:9 Much more then, being now
justified by his blood, we shall be saved from
wrath through him.
• 1 Thessalonians 1:10 And to wait for his Son
from heaven, whom he raised from the dead,
even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath
to come.
• 1 Thessalonians 5:9 For God hath not
appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation
by our Lord Jesus Christ,
SO AT THE VERY LEAST WE CAN
SEE A PRE-WRATH RAPTURE
BUT WAIT!
• We are also supposed to see something else
before the “day of the Lord”.
• 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man
deceive you by any means: for that day
shall not come, except there come a
falling away first, and that man of sin be
revealed, the son of perdition;
PAUL SAYS THAT…
• … before the “day of the Lord”, two things
must happen in succession. What are the
two things?
• 1. a falling away first
• … and
• 2. that man of sin be revealed
WHICH HAPPENS FIRST?
• The “falling away”, or the revealing of the
“man of sin”?
• No question about it! The “falling away”
happens first.
• How do I know that? I’m glad you asked.
2 THESSALONIANS 2:3 SAYS…
• … “except there come a falling away first…”
• That word “first” is the Greek word, “proton”, and
it means…
• 4412 proton {pro'-ton}
• Meaning: 1) first in time or place 1a) in any
succession of things or persons 2) first in rank
2a) influence, honour 2b) chief 2c) principal 3)
first, at the first
THESE TWO EVENTS…
• … the “falling away”, and the revealing of
the “man of sin” may be separated by
some period of time or they may occur the
one right after the other, but one thing is
certain, the “falling away” happens first in
the sequence.
• Now that brings us to a very controversial
issue, namely, what exactly is the “falling
away”?
APOSTASIA
• The three English words, “a falling away”,
are translated from the one Greek word,
“apostasia” in 2nd Thessalonians 2:3.
• Finding out exactly what God meant to
convey when he used this word is crucial
to the whole reason for writing 2nd
Thessalonians 2, 1-8, and, as we might
expect, anything that is crucial to our
understanding something will find a great
deal of devilish mischief surrounding it.
BUT LET’S WADE IN
• There are three views expounded with
regard to the meaning of “apostasia”, as it
is used in 2nd Thessalonians 2:3, and let’s
remember that it is translated, “a falling
away”. The views are as follows in no
particular order.
• 1. That before the “man of sin” is revealed
there will be “a falling away” of Christians.
THE SECOND VIEW IS…
• 2. That the falling away is that which
occurs as a result of a future rebellion by
Lucifer which then issues in the unveiling
of his “son of perdition”, the antichrist.
• 3. The third view is that “a falling away” is
a poor rendering of “apostasia”, and that
the word would be better rendered
“departure”, meaning that some sort of
“departure” must occur before the “son of
perdition” is revealed.
MY VIEW PRIOR TO THIS
STUDY…
• … has been that “apostasia” should be
translated, “the departure”.
• However, for the purposes of this study I
set aside my view and let the evidence
speak.
• I have no personal preference and desire
to simply ascertain what God said.
I WILL PROVIDE THE
EVIDENCE…
• … and you decide for yourselves.
• Before we examine the evidence I want to
warn you of one thing. The belief, of
various theologians, as to the correct
translation of “apostasia”, is often clouded
by the orthodoxy of various parties, and
their predisposition, or opposition, to a pretribulation rapture, or any rapture that is
separate from the 2nd coming of Christ.
NOT TO WORRY THOUGH
• God has so written His word that if we will
search for the hidden gems, that we as
kings are entitled to do, and are equipped
to do, then we will discover the wonderful
ways in which God has written his word so
as to negate His interpretation from being
prejudiced by a particular denomination,
theological school, or translators orthodoxy.
A CAVEAT ON DEFINITONS
• The usage of a word may be distinct and
unrelated to the actual definition of a word. For
example, we all know what the word “bad”
means, however, there is a usage in our culture
where “bad” means “good”, e.g., “That chick is
bad!”.
• Generally speaking, a word is not defined by its
usage, but by it’s definition. The “meaning” of a
word may change over time by virtue of the way
in which a culture uses the word, but its
definition, generally speaking, will not change.
Please remember this.
APOSTASIA – “A FALLING AWAY”
• The argument for translating “apostasia” as “a
falling away”, seems to have solid scholarship
behind it.
• Of those who believe that this “falling away” is
people, and not some special demonic event,
there is debate over whether believers in the
church are pictured as “falling away” [from their
belief in God], or whether a general “falling
away” of the whole world’s population is in view.
THE CHURCH, THE WORLD, OR
LUCIFERIC, WHICH IS IT?
• No matter who you believe the falling away
speaks of [above], one thing is clear.
• This event is not just “a falling away”, but it is
“the falling away”, for the Greek supplies the
definite article “the”, which is interesting
because…
• In Greek grammar the article is assumed
anyway. So by God supplying the definite article
God is making a clear statement.
It is “THE Apostasia”
• God makes it clear that this is a singular,
one-time event. Not all translations
translate the Greek article “the” that God
intentionally placed to show the emphasis
on this being a singular event.
• That is unfortunate, and it is poor
translation. Whether it is “the falling away”
or “the departure”, the “the” belongs there.
HOW “THE APOSTASIA” IS
TRANSLATED IN 34 VERSIONS
• ASV, NKJ, & YLT – “the falling away”; BBE,
K21, KJG, KJV, PNT, RWB & WEB [Webster
Bible] – “a falling away”; AMP, CSB, DBY, MSG,
NAB, NAS, NAU, WEY – “the apostasy”; DRA –
“a revolt”; ESV, NET, NIB, NIV, NRS, RSV – “the
rebellion”; MRD – “a defection”; NJB – “the
Great Revolt”; NLT – “a great rebellion”; CEV –
“people will rebel”; GNT – “the final rebellion”;
NCV – “the turning away” NLV – “people turn
away”; GNV, TNT, - “a departing”; WEB [World
English Bible] – “the departure”.
THE LEXICON ON “APOSTASIA”
• My bible software allows me to hold my
mouse cursor over a word or group of
words and see the Strong’s Concordance
Lexical definition of the word. The results.
A GENEVA BIBLE NOTE
• Notes: Geneva Bible Notes:
• (1) The apostle foretells that before the
coming of the Lord, there will be a throne
set up completely contrary to Christ's
glory, in which that wicked man will sit, and
transfer all things that appertain to God to
himself: and many will fall away from God
to him.
THIS GENEVA BIBLE NOTE…
• … is very revealing. Why? Let’s look at the
pertinent parts one more time.
• (1) The apostle foretells that before the coming
of the Lord, (1) there will be a throne set up
completely contrary to Christ's glory, in
which that wicked man will sit, and (2)
transfer all things that appertain to God to
himself: and many will fall away from God to
him.
PUT SIMPLER
• 1. He sits on his throne [in Jerusalem, in
the rebuilt temple]
• 2. He receives worship intended for God
and causes many to “fall away” from God
and worship him.
• ANYBODY SEE A PROBLEM HERE!
SEQUENCE, SEQUENCE
• 1. Sits on throne
• 2. Causes many to “fall away”
• 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man
deceive you by any means: for that day
shall not come, except there come a
falling away first, and that man of sin be
revealed, the son of perdition;
THE APOSTASIA HAPPENS
FIRST, THEN HE SITS
• 2 Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man deceive you
by any means: 1: for that day shall not come,
except there come a falling away first, and
that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
• 2 Thessalonians 2:4 Who opposeth and
exalteth himself above all that is called God, or
that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in
the temple of God, shewing himself that he is
God.
WHATEVER THE APOSTASIA IS…
• … it is FIRST, before the revealing of the man of
sin, who is revealed when he sits in God’s
temple, claiming God’s worship.
• Remember an earlier slide on the word “first” in
the phrase, “except there come a falling away
first”?
• The word “first” is “proton”, the first in a
succession!
THAT MISTAKE MAKES ME A
LITTLE SUSPICIOUS…
• … but never mind, let’s continue to
examine the case for “apostasia” being
translated “falling away”.
• You probably do not remember the fact
that the Strong’s definition for “apostasia”
mentioned that “apostasia” appears one
other time in the New Testament in Acts
21:21 where it is translated, “forsake”.
ACTS 21:21
• Acts 21:21 And they are informed of thee, that
thou teachest all the Jews which are among the
Gentiles to forsake Moses, saying that they
ought not to circumcise their children, neither to
walk after the customs.
• The word above, “forsake”, is translated from the
Greek word, “apostasia”. The same word
translated “a falling away” in 2nd Thessalonians
2:3
THE CASE FOR “A FALLING
AWAY” IS LOOKING STRONG
• In all cases, any argument made by scholars,
teachers, and believers, for translating
“apostasia” as “a falling away”, or “a rebellion”,
or, “apostasy”, all reference the only other use of
“apostasia” in Acts 21:21 where it is used to
describe “forsaking” Moses, indicating a
religious “falling away” from Moses.
• They also use the definitions provided in the
Lexicons as well as verses in the LXX.
THE LXX – THE SEPTUAGINT
• The Septuagint is a Greek translation of the
Hebrew Old Testament produced around 282
BC. Hebrew scholars who also knew Greek
were invited to Alexandria Egypt to produce the
LXX.
• The LXX has a few references (a half dozen or
so) where Hebrew bible verses speak of
rebellion against God or religion, and in these
verses, the Greek word, “apostasia” is used.
A COUPLE OF EXAMPLES
• LXE Joshua 22:22 God even God is the Lord,
and God even God himself knows, and Israel he
shall know; if we have transgressed before the
Lord by apostasy, let him not deliver us this day.
• LXE 2 Chronicles 29:19 and all the vessels
which king Achaz polluted in his reign, in his
apostasy, we have prepared and purified:
behold, they are before the altar of the Lord.
SO OUT OF 35 BIBLES…
• … why would even three bibles choose to
translate “apostasia” as “depart”, or
“departure”? The evidence for “a falling
away”, or, “apostasy”, or “a rebellion”,
seems overwhelming!
• The answer to that question is very
interesting, and vital to your life. Yes, vital!
WHAT DO WE HAVE?
• 1. We have the LXX Greek bible using
“apostasia” to translate Hebrew words meaning
rebellion against God.
• 2. We have the only other verse in the New
Testament which we can look at using the “prior
usage” rule, Acts 21:21, where “apostasia” is
translated as “forsake”, as in a religious
forsaking of Moses.
• 3. We have the Strong’s definition of
“apostasia” as “a falling away”, “defection”,
“apostasy”.
EVERYONE BUILDS THEIR CASE
ON THOSE THREE THINGS,…
• … which are not unsound! So what made
me question?
• After all, I have settled on the meaning of
other words with far less research. I would
simply look at Strong’s and move on.
• But! In those various cases, I was not
detecting the putrid aroma of… gasp…
A CONSPIRACY!
• What exactly was bothering me? Was it that I
had some personal predilection causing me to
want to see “a falling away” translated as the
“the departure”. NO!
• First, that would not be honest, and I have not
approached the word of God dishonestly in
many years.
• Was it my desire to see a rapture verse that
showed us leaving before most of the bad stuff?
NO! TO ALL OF THESE!
THEN WHAT?
• It was a nnggghhh! A what? A nnggghhh!
• What the hell is a nnggghhh? I’m glad you
asked:<(0)
• A nnggghhh is a thing I get in my spirit
when something stinks but I have no idea
why. When that happens, I just pray,
continue to read, and do my due diligence.
Then… I began…to notice things
• Things like the Geneva Bible note we read
that had the sequence of events
backwards, that is, they had the AntiChrist
being revealed as God, and then the
“falling away”. Nothing conclusive in itself,
but enough for me to say, “why were they
backwards”.
• Then there is the subject. Yes, the subject.
REMEMBER THE SLIDE WHERE
WE SAW THAT THE SUBJECT…
• … was 2 Thessalonians 2:1
• Now we beseech you, brethren, by the
coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and
by our gathering together unto him,
• 1. “the coming of our Lord Jesus
Christ,”
• 2. “our gathering together unto him,”
THE SUBJECT, THE STANDARD
BY WHICH TRUTH and ERROR…
• … must be measured. Everything in this
section of 2nd Thessalonians must comport
with the announced subject of and be
measured by…
• 1. “the coming of our Lord Jesus
Christ,”
• 2. “our gathering together unto
him,[rapture]”
DID I FIND THAT TO BE THE
CASE? NO! HOW SO!
• I’m glad you asked! Remember, we measure by…
• 1.
• 2.
“the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ,”
“our gathering together unto him,”
• However, when I read verse 3 and following, it raised a
flag for me. Why?
• First of all, notice in verse 1 that the order of the phrases
are reversed. Jesus does not come, and then we are
gathered! We are gathered to him, and then we come
back with him at his 2nd coming!
THE REVERSAL OF THIS ORDER
GRABBED MY ATTENTION
• You see, the Day of the Lord is
synonymous in scripture with the 2nd
coming of Christ. If you are talking about
the 2nd coming you are talking about the
Day of the Lord. If you are talking about
the day of the Lord you are talking about
the 2nd coming.
• I saw the reversal in the subject…
AND THEN I SAW THE
REVERSAL AGAIN… IN VERSE 3
• 2 Thessalonians 2:3 … for that day shall not
come, except there come a falling away first,
• “For that day shall not come”! What day? The
Day of the Lord, that is, Christ’s coming!
• The Day of the Lord/Christ’s coming is placed in
sequence in the verse before the “apostasia”, or
“a falling away”. The order they are mentioned is
in reverse order from their actual occurrence.
SO NOW I SEE A PATTERN
• In 2nd Thessalonians 2:1, the subject…
• 1. “the [2nd] coming of Christ,”
• 2. “our gathering together [rapture],”
• And in 2nd Thessalonians 2:3
• 1. “that day [the 2nd coming] shall not
come,”
• 2. “our gathering together,”
WHAT!!
ARE YOU NUTS?
• I do not see what you see! I’ll grant you
that the italicized phrase in verse 3, “that
day shall not come”, is a reference to the
Day of the Lord, the day of Christ’s 2nd
coming but BUT BUT!
• I see no words after that, or even in the
next words, “except there come a falling
away first” that remotely relate to “our
gathering together”, instead we have, “a
falling away”.
EXACTLY! EXACTLY!
• We have a subject introduced in verse (1) which
is “Christ’s coming [Day of the Lord]” and then
“our gathering [rapture]”. It’s even introduced in
REVERSE order with respect to sequence.
• Then, in verse (3) we the same reverse order,
“Christ’s coming [Day of the Lord]” and then “our
gathering [rapture]”? NO! That’s; not what we
see! We see, instead, “Christ’s coming [Day of
the Lord]” and then what? “[A] falling away”?
LET’S SEE, OKAY, APPLE/APPLE,
then APPLE/BANANA?
• Day of the Lord [APPLE] then gathering
together/rapture [APPLE] in 2nd Thess 2:1, but in 2nd
Thess 2:3 we see
• Day of the Lord [APPLE] then “falling away”
[BANANA]? 2 Thess 2:3
• I’m expecting everything Paul introduces to comport with
God’s benchmark, the subject introduced in verse (1).
• “A falling away” was NOT introduced in 2nd Thess 2:1 as
the subject. So why is it there in verse 2:3?
MORE SUSPICIOUS NOW…
• … but do not have nearly enough authority to
overturn the great body of evidence supporting
“a falling away” as a translation. But I am getting
more suspicious. Why?
• Because I have done too much research into
God’s word, and seen the incredible harmony
and symmetry in the structure of His word to be
comfortable with “apostasia” as “a falling away”.
WE GO DEEPER
• The word “apostasia” itself is a compound
of two Greek words, “apo”, meaning “from”
and “istemi”, meaning “stand”. So in it’s
literal sense, it is a standing away from,
and would be defined as “away from”, or
“departure”.
• So where does a “falling away” come
from? Good question. Let’s look at the
Lexicons
BDAG Lexicon
Sounds like a falling away to me…
THAYER’S LEXICON
NOTICE THIS
COMMENT!
AHA! THE FIRST
RAY OF LIGHT!
LIDDELL-SCOTT LEXICON
See it! This… is a “late form” of this! So let’s look at the earlier form.
• Notice the words “late form of” and the
slight difference in the words. Also notice
this Lexicon provides the definition of
“defection”. A much more general term and
more accurate, I would say.
LIDDELL-SCOTT LEXICON
• The “earlier”, original form.
LITERAL DEFINITION
FIGURATIVE USAGE
by Thucicides
LITERAL USAGE
LITERAL USAGE
by Euripides
by Plato
A-HA!!!!!!!!
• So we see on the previous slide that the Liddell-Scott
Lexicon informs us that the word, “apostasia”, in its older,
original form, has, as its literal definition, “a standing
away from”.
• However, in use, this Lexicon shows us in example #1
[previous slide] that the Greek Historian, Thucidides, c.
460 – c. 400 BC, used the word “apostasia” in his
writings in a figurative way to represent defection or
revolt.
• Euripides [example #2], the Greek Playwright, c. 480 – c.
406 BC, used “apostasia” in its literal sense as departure
from.
• Finally, Plato, c. 427 – c. 347 BC used the word in its
literal sense of distance or interval, that is, separation.
SUMMING UP THIS PORTION
• The literal definition of “apostasia” in its older,
original form, is “a standing away from”, or
“departure from”, which results in, “distance”, or
“interval”. That fact is inescapable.
• Next, that the word “apostasia” in its older,
original form, may be used to depict a literal
“standing away from”, a “departure”, a
“separation”, a “distance”, or an “interval”… and
finally, that it may be used in a secondary way in
a figurative sense to depict revolt or defection.
GORDAN LEWIS
• Gordon Lewis explains how the verb, from which
the noun apostasia is derived, supports the
basic meaning of “departure” in the following:
Henry George Liddell and Henry Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon,
Revised with a Supplement [1968] by Sir Henry Stuart Jones and
Roderick McKenzie (Oxford, Eng.: Oxford University Press, 1940),
p. 218.
• “The verb may mean to remove spatially. There
is little reason then to deny that the noun can
mean such a spatial removal or departure. Since
the noun is used only one other time in the New
Testament of apostasy from Moses (Acts 21:21),
we can hardly conclude that its Biblical meaning
is necessarily determined.”
GORDAN LEWIS – CONT’D.
• The verb is used fifteen times in the New
Testament. Of these fifteen, only three
have anything to do with a departure from
the faith (Luke 8;13; 1 Tim. 4:1; Heb 3:12).
The word is used for departing from
iniquity (2 Tim. 2:19), from ungodly men(1
Tim. 6:5), from the temple (Luke 2:27),
from the body (2 Cor. 12:8), and from
persons (Acts 12:10; Luke 4:13).
• Gordon R. Lewis, " Biblical Evidence for Pretribulationism,"
Bibliotheca Sacra (vol. 125, no. 499; July 1968), p. 218.
MORE EVIDENCE
• " It is with full assurance of proper
exegetical study and with complete
confidence in the original languages,"
concludes Daniel Davey, " that the word
meaning of apostasia is defined as
departure." Daniel K. Davey, " The ' Apostesia' of II
Thessalonians 2:3," Th.M. thesis, Detroit Baptist Theological
Seminary, May 1982, p. 27.
Paul Lee Tan adds the following:
• What precisely does Paul mean when he says
that "the falling away" (2:3) must come before
the tribulation? The definite article " the" denotes
that this will be a definite event, an event distinct
from the appearance of the Man of Sin. The
Greek word for "falling away" , taken by itself,
does not mean religious apostasy or defection.
Neither does the word mean " to fall," as the
Greeks have another word for that. [pipto, I fall;
TDI] The best translation of the word is "to
depart." The apostle Paul refers here to a
definite event which he calls "the departure," and
which will occur just before the start of the
tribulation. This is the rapture of the church.
EARLY TRANSLATIONS
• The first seven English translations of apostasia
all rendered the noun as either "departure" or "
departing." They are as follows: Wycliffe Bible
(1384); Tyndale Bible (1526); Coverdale Bible
(1535); Cranmer Bible (1539); Breeches Bible
(1576); Beza Bible (1583); Geneva Bible
(1608).[5] This supports the notion that the word
truly means "departure." In fact, Jerome' s Latin
translation known as the Vulgate, from around
the time of A.D. 400, renders apostasia with the
" word discessio, meaning ' departure.' " [6] Why
was the King James Version the first to depart
from the established translation of "departure" ?
E. SCHULYER ENGLISH ASKS
THE QUESTION…
• Again, how would the Thessalonians -- or
Christians in any century since -- be
qualified to recognize the apostasy when it
should come, assuming, simply for the
sake of this inquiry, that the Church might
be on earth when it does come? There
has been apostasy from God, rebellion
against Him, since time began.
PROFESSOR J.S. MALAN WRITES…
• The Greek word apostasia means departure,
withdrawal or separation. A spiritual and moral
falling away can be read into this word only as
a secondary meaning, deduced from its basic
reference to the departure of the truth.
Apostasia is derived from the particle apo which
means off or away [from something near], in
various senses of place, time or relation. It
denotes separation, departure, or the
cessation [of a relationship]. The verb correlate
of apostasia is aphistemi which, according to
Strong’s Concordance, means to depart,
withdraw, draw (fall) away, remove.
PROF. MALAN CONCLUDES…
• … the word “apostasia” is best translated, and,
has as its meaning, “depart”, departure”,
“departing”.
• This “departing” is in a literal physical sense,
and may be used in a secondary figurative
sense, such as departing from the faith.
• But which is it in verse three, for I have heard
the witnesses. I am satisfied that “a falling away”
is at best, an unfaithful translation. KJ: I AGREE
STRUCTURE, STRUCTURE
HOW I IDENTIFY IT
• First, to reveal structure, I simplify. No parenthesis.
• 2 Thessalonians 2:3-8 3 Let no man deceive you by
any means: for that day shall not come, except there
come a falling away first, and that man of sin be
revealed, (the son of perdition; 4 Who opposeth and
exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is
worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of
God, shewing himself that he is God.) 5 Remember ye
not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these
things? 6 And now ye know what withholdeth that he
might be revealed in his time. 7 For the mystery of
iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will
let, until he be taken out of the way. 8 And then shall that
Wicked be revealed, (whom the Lord shall consume with
the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the
brightness of his coming.) [parenthesis mine.]
NEXT, VERSE NUMBERINGS
Let no man deceive you by any means: for that
day shall not come, except there come a falling
away first, and that man of sin be revealed,
Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you,
I told you these things? And now ye know what
withholdeth that he might be revealed in his
time. For the mystery of iniquity doth already
work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be
taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked
be revealed, [I remove the verse numberings.]
NEXT, I COLOR IDENTICAL OR
SIMILAR STATEMENTS
Let no man deceive you by any means: for that
day shall not come, except there come a falling
away first, and that man of sin be revealed,
Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you,
I told you these things? And now ye know what
withholdeth that he might be revealed in his
time. For the mystery of iniquity doth already
work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be
taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked
be revealed,
THEN I COLOR WHAT PRECEEDS
THE IDENTICAL STATEMENTS
Let no man deceive you by any means: for that
day shall not come, except there come a falling
away first, and that man of sin be revealed,
Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you,
I told you these things? And now ye know what
withholdeth that he might be revealed in his
time. For the mystery of iniquity doth already
work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be
taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked
be revealed,
THEN ORGANIZATION BY
COLOR USING RETURN KEYS
Let no man deceive you by any means: for that
day shall not come, except
there come a falling away first,
and that man of sin be revealed,
Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you,
told you these things?
And now ye know what withholdeth
that he might be revealed in his time.
For the mystery of iniquity doth already work:
only he who now hinders will hinder, until he be
taken out of the [midst].
And then shall that Wicked be revealed,
THEN TABS
Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day
shall not come, except
NOTICE!
there come a falling away first,
and that man of sin be revealed,
Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you,
told you these things?
And now ye know what hinders, [katecho neuter]
that he might be revealed in his time.
For the mystery of iniquity doth already work:
only he who now hinders [katecho, masculine] will
hinder, until he be taken out of the [midst].
And then shall that Wicked be revealed,
KATECHO - HINDER
Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day
shall not come, except
there come a falling away first,
and that man of sin be revealed,
Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, told
you these things?
And now ye know what hinders, [katecho neuter]
that he might be revealed in his time.
For the mystery of iniquity doth already work:
only he who now hinders [katecho, masculine] will
hinder, until he be taken out of the [midst].
And then shall that Wicked be revealed,
KATECHO - HINDER
• 2 Thessalonians 2:6 And now ye know what
withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.
• 2722 katecho {kat-ekh'-o}
• Meaning: 1) to hold back, detain, retain 1a) from going
away 1b) to restrain, hinder (the course or progress of)
1b1) that which hinders, Antichrist from making his
appearance 1b2) to check a ship's headway i.e. to hold
or head the ship 1c) to hold fast, keep secure, keep firm
possession of 2) to get possession of, take 2b) to
possess
IT HINDERS – HE HINDERS
Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day
shall not come, except
there come a falling away first,
and that man of sin be revealed,
Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you,
Here “hinders” is neuter because it
speaks of an event that hinders.
told you these things?
And now ye know what hinders, [katecho neuter]
that he might be revealed in his time.
For the mystery of iniquity doth
already work:
Here “hinders” is masculine and has a “he” in view
only he who now hinders [katecho, masculine] will
hinder, until he be taken out of the [midst].
And then shall that Wicked be revealed,
WE HAVE A DIFFICULT VERSE
When I have a difficult verse I sometimes put it in Excel and place each KJV word in its own cell with its
corresponding Greek word below it. I then list every word the lexicons have as a possible translation, no
matter the context. I next eliminate the obviously incorrect and inapplicable until I arrive at the word that the
context, grammar, and God’s interpretation of His own word, permit.
GINOMAI – AN INTERESTING
WORD
• 2 Thessalonians 2:7 For the mystery of iniquity doth
already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be
taken out of the [midst]. (“he be taken” is ginomai)
• “Ginomai” is an interesting Greek word. It appears some
419 times in the new Testament and some 300+ of those
times it’s usage is “being” but it has some interesting
infrequent usages like, “saltiness”, “fulfilled”, “vanished”,
“married”, etc. Insert these and say the verse above, as
in, “until he be [vanished] out of the [midst]”, or, try this:
“until he be [married] out of the [midst]”.
• Interesting, but, it’s okay, we don’t need to do that.
APOSTASIA – THE DEPARTURE
Let no man deceive you by any means:
for that day
Here is the proper translation of
“apostasia” based upon its definition.
shall not come, except
there come THE DEPARTURE first,
and that man of sin be revealed,
Remember ye not, that, when ISowas
yet with you, told
the “what” that “hinders” is “the departure”.
you these things?
It must happen first “proton”.
And now ye know what hinders, [katecho neuter]
that he might be revealed in his time.
“he” who now “hinders” is you and I.
For the mystery of iniquity dothThealready
work:
only he who now hinders [katecho, masculine] will
hinder, until he be taken out of the [midst].
And then shall that Wicked be revealed,
THE “he who now hinders” is a “he”
IN WHAT SENSE?
• The sense this example provides… “Todays American has no concept
of the freedom he loses when he trades liberty for peace and safety.
• He who? Which American?
• Answer: In the example above a single American is representative of
all Americans. What applies to one American applies to all. One is put
for the many. The same sense is seen in “he who now hinders”.
• What is in view is really the church, but it is the church as it is
individually represented by each member during his or her lifetime. It
cannot mean the whole church as only a portion of the church is alive
at any one time to serve as a hindrance to the unveiling of the “son of
perdition”.
ONE MORE THING
• 2 Thessalonians 2:3-5 3 Let no man deceive
you by any means: for that day shall not come,
except there come a falling away first, and that
man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; 4
Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all
that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that
he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing
himself that he is God. 5 Remember ye not,
that, when I was yet with you, I told you these
things?
PAUL IS REFERRING TO…
• … his first letter, 1st Thessalonians. What
things had he told them? Well, how about,
in virtually every chapter he told them
something about the Day of the Lord, or
the 2nd coming, or the rapture.
• How bout the fact that NOT EVEN ONCE
did Paul mention “a falling away”, or “a
rebellion”.
BUT LOOK WHAT
HE DID TELL THEM
• 1 Thessalonians 4:16, 17 16 For the
Lord himself shall descend from heaven
with a shout, with the voice of the
archangel, and with the trump of God: and
the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then
we which are alive and remain shall be
caught up together with them in the
clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so
shall we ever be with the Lord.
LOOK AT VERSE 5 AGAIN
Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not
come, except
there come THE DEPARTURE first,
and that man of sin be revealed,
5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, told you
these things?
And now ye know what hinders,
that he might be revealed in his time.
For the mystery of iniquity doth already work:
only he who now hinders will hinder, until he be taken
out of the [midst].
And then shall that Wicked be revealed,
“Remember ye not when I was yet
with you I told you these things?”
• What things? These things in part…that…
• “we which are alive and remain shall be caught
up together with them” [the dead in Christ]
• “Caught up together” of 1st Thess. 4:17 equals
“our gathering together” of 2nd Thess 2:1, which
equals “the departure” of 2nd Thess 2:3, which
equals the “[being] taken out of the [midst]” of
2nd Thess 2:7.
IN ADDITION
• I would like to point out that the “falling away” crowd are
fond of stating that every reference to the word
“apostasia” in scripture is both negative and about
religious rebellion.
• I wholeheartedly disagree! The LXX scriptures appealed
to wherein “apostasia” appears are figurative uses of the
literal definition, “a standing away from”. As for Acts
21:21 where “apostasia” is translated “forsake”, that is
hardly a negative usage. After all, Paul was teaching the
saved Jews that they were no longer under the law, but
under grace! Forsaking Moses [law covenant] was a
good thing!
DON’T BELIEVE IN RAPTURE
• Another thing I noticed was that those who opted
for “a falling away” seem to be largely those who
are against a pretribulational rapture view.
Hardly determinative, but interesting.
• There is the additional evidence that I have
provided this fellowship before from E.W.
Bullinger’s work using Euclidian geometry to
demonstrate the meaning of Greek prepositions,
such as the prefix to “apostasia”, “apo” meaning
from.
NOW WE HAVE
APPLE/APPLE APPLE/APPLE
• In 2nd Thessalonians 2:1, the subject…
• 1. “the [2nd] coming of Christ,”
• 2. “our gathering together [rapture],”
• And in 2nd Thessalonians 2:3
• 1. “that day [day of the Lord, the 2nd
coming] shall not come,”
• 2. “the departure,” [the rapture]
FINALLY, CONSIDER THIS
•
•
•
•
•
The Thessalonians were afraid that the “day of the Lord” had begun. Now, did they
know that the “son of perdition” would “be revealed”? Yes! They thought Ceaser was
him!
Now-w-w-w stay with me! Think! If “apostasia” meant “a falling away”, then why would
the Thessalonians now be afraid? After all, they thought Caesar was the “wicked
one”, therefore they would have no problem with understanding that Caesar coming
to power had been preceded by an apostasy that permitted his revealing as the
“wicked one”, and therefore they would be expecting the “day of the Lord”, and
subsequently, the 2nd coming -- a good thing! They would finally be with the Lord!
How exciting!
HOWEVER! If “apostasia” meant “THE DEPARTURE”, then they would be very
alarmed! Why! Because “the departure”, (as one of those things that Paul referred to
when he said, “remember ye not when I was yet with you I told you these things”)
would first take the “dead in Christ”, then all remaining alive believers!
SO-o-o-o! Since the “apostasia” and the revealing of the “son of perdition” were to
precede the “day of the Lord”, and they believed (due to an evil report) that they were
already in the “day of the Lord”, it meant that they had missed “the departure”, the
rapture! And what would that mean if you were not “taken” at the gathering?
Simply put… if “apostasia” meant “a falling away”, then the Thessalonians would not
have been afraid, even if they were in “the day of the Lord” because they would have
been thoroughly thrilled, as you or I would, to know that the 2nd coming was right
around the corner. But if “apostasia” meant “the departure”, then that meant they
were lost, had missed the gathering, in which case, I’d have been very afraid too!
TO SUM UP
Let’s be fair to the Thessalonians. We have the advantage of reading and
understanding 2 Thessalonians 2:1-8 after the fact. Remember, these verses
were written to address and correct their fear. They did not have these verses
until they were written. What they did have were the words of Paul that he
referred to when he said…
2 Thessalonians 2:5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told
you these things?
They were expecting to be “caught up” before the day of the Lord. Not
witnesses to some tragic “falling away”. There are other verses which speak of
falling away, but not 2 Thessalonians 2:3. It speaks of our departure, one of the
things Paul had told them about in 1st Thessalonians 4:17 when he discussed
our being “caught up”, snatched, ahhhhh… raptured.
THE END
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