Book of 2 Thessalonians

From Journey the Word

In this second letter to the church at Thessalonica, Paul writes again about the Second Coming of Christ, but tries to comfort them that the Lord has not returned yet. He also instructs them to live disciplined lives. Jesus instructed the apostles to go forth and make disciples; therefore, Paul was intent on correction and discipline to make their relationship with God stronger.

Paul starts the letter thanking God before encouraging them not to worry in their persecutions, but to be patient during trials. This is in hopes that the name of the Lord be glorified in them according to the grace of God and of Jesus Christ. Next, Paul begins talking about the day of the Lord, that is, the Second Coming of Christ. Paul gave assurance to the Thessalonians that the Lord is returning and that they would be caught up in the air with Him, when he wrote to them in the first letter. The event of the Lord s coming would deliver the believers from the coming wrath of God upon the earth.

Now, false teachers began pointing out that the Lord already returned, which put the Thessalonian people in fear that they had been left behind, and that God's wrath was coming soon upon the earth. Then, Paul talks about the wicked (the antichrist in common belief) being revealed when the Restrainer (the Holy Spirit) is taken away. The Holy Spirit is within believers and restrains the forces of evil from taking over the earth completely, but when Jesus returns and gets His people, that would mean the Restrainer is removed from the earth also - thus clearing the way for the Wic*ed to be revealed.

Paul assures that the wicked will be destroyed by God's wrath, and that God shall punish those that wort< unrighteousness. Next, Paul encourages the people to hold fast to their beliefs they have been taught, to comfort their hearts, and establish themselves in every good word and work. ln the last chapter, Paul tells the people to pray for people, that they would be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men. He hopes that the Lord keeps them from evil, and then the Lord direct their hearts into the love of God, and wait patiently for Christ's return. He then warns against being around disorderly, lazy men. Also, that they should work quietly, eating their own bread.

Paul finishes the letter wishing upon them peace. This is in hopes that they do indeed have peace after all of the hype about the Lord's coming. Sadly, Paul could not come unto them; therefore, all of what Paul says in his letters is taken literally. ln addition, the false teachers wanted to bring up hype that the Lord already returned, which did not help them have much peace. Therefore, what they received from Paul calmed them down. Adding to that, it seems that they probably read the letter before the congregation -which may have made the false teachers angry. Seems Paul had a continual problem with false teachers, and the adversity ensued even more in transition from the first letter to the second letter.

Paul requested their prayers so that the ministry would be successful, and those people would be safe who were employed in the ministry. This shows that even being imprisoned did not stop Paul from desiring the Lord's work to continue. For Paul did not blame the Lord for his imprisonment, but rather blamed the persecutors for the trouble. Paul knew and attempted to teach others about the grace and sufficiency of Christ and also how God loves each of us and is not out to punish us (not even through His Law).