Monday, June 4, 2012

Second Thessalonians

Second Thessalonians.  The Holy Bible.  New King James Version.  Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982.

Paul’s second letter to the church at Thessalonica continues the themes of the first, especially topics related to the second coming of Christ.  When Christ comes again, it will be with judgment.  Those who do not know God will be destroyed.  Those who know Him will live with Him and glorify Him forever.

It is tempting to say He will destroy the wicked.  However, all of us are wicked.  We’ve all sinned. Some know God.  They have faith in Christ.  God rescues these people, gives them a new life and transforms their character.  It is good to remember that if there is any good is us, it is the work of God, and if we have any real hope, it is in the mercy of God.

Paul also teaches about the antichrist in this book, though use the terms “man of sin,” “son of perdition” and “lawless” one.  This person will claim to be divine and call people to worship him.  He will deceive people with displays of power.  People who do not know God will believe him.

These teachings aren’t intended to scare Christians or make them obsess about end times.  God is in control of when and how Jesus Christ will return and His judgment on the world.

Instead, we should live gratefully because we are saved.  We should hold tight to the truth we received and not let ourselves be deceived by all kinds of teachers who want to draw followers to themselves instead of glorifying God.  We should work productively, live peaceably, and do good works until Christ returns or as long as we live.  We honor God who loves us, our rescuer, with such a life of gratitude and trust.

Paul also wrote