2 Thessalonians 2
Paul wanted to reassure the Christians that Jesus has not already returned, as some were teaching, because Satan is still at work. Who or what is the “man of lawlessness” is not clear but don’t miss an important point that Paul is telling these Christians! They were struggling now with persecution and suffering but Paul is telling them it is going to get worse before it gets better! In fact, referring back to the first chapter – things will not truly get better until Jesus returns and Satan is cast into the lake of burning fire (hell). Who is the “man of lawlessness?” Well that is a good question and no one truly has the answer. Let me suggest my understanding of the “lawlessness one,” whatever it is worth. The lawlessness one is not one figure in history – but all those like the antichrist who oppose Christ and His children. The language in this text reminds one of Daniel and in the future were emperors like Nero, Domitian both whom claim to be deity and persecuted the Christians. In the third century A.D. Thessalonica was selected to oversee a Roman temple, and under Decius (ruled A.D. 249-251), who was infamous for his persecution of Christians. Please don’t miss the point in our reading! Things were going to get ruff to be a Christians and many might have to suffer for their faith – but stand firm to the end and you will win!