THE MAN OF LAWLESSNESS.
I don’t often comment on how arduous or easy my daily biblical readings are, but Paul’s letters are beginning to blend together. 2 Thessalonians marks the eighth time Paul has jotted his ideas down on parchment and sent it off. They all begin with a formal introduction and a plea for prayer. Then, Paul rambles off some stuff the subject has done well and some stuff the subject could do better. Finally, there is usually one or two things unique to itself – some time spent on a topic that the other letters omit. 1 Thessalonians, as we saw yesterday, gave us a personal look at sexual immorality. Philippians taught us about imitating Christ’s love.
So what does 2 Thessalonians have in store for us?
“Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the Man of Lawlessness is revealed…”
2 Thessalonians 2:3a (NIV)
The Man of what now? The Man of “LAWLESSNESS?” (or as a nifty NIV footnote says, “Sometime called the Man of Sin”) Tell me more now please.
“He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.” (2:4)
So we have this guy in the shadows coming to take on God – to overtake His temple and His followers? I don’t remember learning about THIS guy!
“…The lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming.” (2:8b)
God is going to…
There will be overthrown…
Oh wait a minute. This is just starting to sound like Satan talk. Is this “Man of Lawlessness” just euphemism for Satan?
“The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works…” (2:9a)
Wait! They are two separate guys! I think I know what that means…
We are getting close to the end of the Bible here, so some apocalyptic prophesizing will begin to drip its way in. And I am honestly just so excited. I think Revelation was the first book of the Bible that I actually read in its entirety, mostly for its fever-dream imagery and prophetic destruction. Who doesn’t get the urge to flip to the last page, just to see how it all ends?
This entry is nothing more than unbridled excitement and joy. We’re a month away from the end people. I needed a gut punch of energy to get me through the sometimes repetitive letters.
And this certainly has done the trick. Some good stuff is coming folks. Hang on.