The First Epistle of Paul the Apostle: to the Thessalonians.
Paul and Silvanus and Timotheus, to the Church of the Thessalonians which is in
God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace be unto you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. We
give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers. Remembering without ceasing your work of faith
and labor of love and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ in the sight of God and our Father, knowing brethren beloved
your election or your calling of God.
For our gospel came not unto you in word only but also in power and in the Holy
Spirit and in much assurance as you know what matter of men we were among you for your sake and ye became followers of us
and of the Lord having received the word in much affliction with joy of the Holy Spirit so that you were examples to all that
believe in Macedonia and Achaia. For from you sounded out the word of the Lord not only in Macedonia and Achaia but also in
every place your faith toward God is spread abroad so that we need not speak anything. For they themselves show of us what
manner of entering in we had unto you and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God and to wait for
his son from heaven whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus which delivered us from the wrath to come.
For yourselves, brethren know are entrance in unto you that it was not in vain,
but even after that we had suffered before and were shamefully entreated as you know at Philippi. We were bold in our God
to speak unto you the gospel of God with much contention for our exhortation was not of deceit nor of uncleanness nor in guile
but as we were allowed of God to put in trust with the Gospel even so we speak, not as pleasing men, but as pleasing God which
drives our hearts. For neither at anytime used we flattering words as you know nor a cloak of covetousness for God is witness
nor of men sought we unequal or in neither of you nor yet of others when we might have been burdensome as the apostles of
Christ. But we were gentle among you even as a nurse cherishes her children. So, being affectionately desirous of you, we
were willing to have imparted onto you not the gospel of God only but also our very own souls, our lives, because you were
dear unto us.
For you remember, brethren,
our labor and travail our work. For laboring night and day because we would not be chargeable unto any of you. We preach unto
you the gospel of God. You are witnesses and God also how holy and justly and unblamably we behaved ourselves among you that
believe. As you know how we exhorted and comforted and charged everyone of you as a father doth his children. That you would
walk worthy of God who had clothed you onto his kingdom and glory. For this cause also thank we God without ceasing because
when you receive the word of God which you heard of us, you receive it not as the words of the men, but as it is in truth
the word of God which affectionately works also in you that believe.
For you, brethren became followers of the Church of God which in Judea are in Christ
Jesus for ye also have suffered like things of your own countrymen even as they have of Jews. You Gentiles were persecuted
by your fellow Gentiles even as the Jews in the faith in Judea were persecuted by their fellow Jews. Paul is trying hard here
to introduce himself by speaking of all of his efforts, exhortation and love on their behalf, who
both killed the Lord Jesus, this is Verse 15, and their own prophets and have persecuted
us and they pleased not God and are country to all men, forbidding us to speak to the Gentiles that they might be saved, to
fill up their sins always for the wrath to come upon them to the uttermost, but we brethren being taken from you for a short
time and presence but not in heart.
You are in our minds and hearts. We endeavor the more abundantly to see your face
with a great desire. Wherefore, we would have come onto you, even I Paul once and again, but Satan hinder does. For what is
our hope or joy or crown of rejoicing? Are not even you in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at His coming? For you are
our glory and joy. Paul is saying that the glory of a father is his children, and the glory of a teacher is his students
and the glory of a minister is his congregation. It is the congregation of God and it is the people whom he brings to God
and it is his glory and his joy to see them in the resurrection and in the presence of God. The measure of a minister is not
how large a church he has or how much money or what great buildings he constructs, or what great work he does. The measure
of a minister is the quality of the doctrine he presents and the quality of the people that he has turned toward God, the
quality of their understanding and their learning, and the quality of their relationship with God.
There are many false teachers out there with thousands or even millions of supporters and followers. That means
nothing. What is important is the quality of understanding and learning and the development of students and the congregation.
That is what’s important, and it is the joy of a true minister of God. It is his chief joy to see his students, his
congregates in the resurrection in the presence of the Father. That’s what this is all about. It’s about love.
It’s not about a man saying, “Look at what I’ve done and look what I built.” It’s about a man
saying, “Look at this wonderful people who have learned so much and tried so hard and look how God has blessed them.
That is the joy of a minister and that truly is the joy of every parent. The desire of any parent is to see his children grow
up to become greater than he was and the desire of any minister should be to have his congregates all mature and grow to the
point that they become greater than he is.
As Moses said to Joshua, “Forbid them not to prophecy for I would that all
God’s people were prophets”. A true minister of God, a true man humble before God has that same desire
in his heart. He would, he wants that all God’s people should be prophets; that all God’s people should be close
to God and growing and overcoming to become people, men and women of renown in the history of the works of the family of God
for you are our glory and our joy. Wherefore, when we could no longer forebear, we thought it
good to be left at Athens alone and send Timotheus our brother and minister of God, and our fellow labor in the gospel of
Christ. to establish you and to comfort you concerning your faith that no man should be moved by these afflictions for yourselves
know that we are appointed thereunto. So, when Paul could not make it to visit Thessalonica and visit these people,
he sent Timothy to visit them to encourage them because they were afflicted.
Verse 4 of Chapter 3: For truly when we were with you, we told you before that we
should suffer tribulation even as it came to pass and you know. For this cause when I could no longer restrain myself or forebear,
I sent to know your faith, thus by some means the tempter had tempted you and our labor be in vain, but now when Timotheus
came from you unto us, returned to us, and brought us good tidings of your faith and charity
and that ye have good remembrance of us always, desiring greatly to see us as we also desire to see you. So, Paul’s
heart was lifted up and Timothy came back with the good news that the Thessalonians were filled with charity and faith and
good works and remembered Paul fondly and desired greatly to see him. Therefore, brethren we
were comforted over you in all our affliction and distress by your faith: for now we live, if ye stand fast in the Lord.
For what things can we render to God again for you, for all the joy wherewith we
joy for your sakes before our God; night and day praying exceedingly that we might see your face and might perfect that which
is lacking in your faith? Now God himself and our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ direct
our way unto you, and the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another and toward all men even as we do
toward you. To the end, he may establish your hearts, unblameable in holiness before God even our Father, at the coming of
our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.
Furthermore, then, we beseech you brethren
and exhort you by the Lord Jesus that as you have received of us how you ought to walk or how you ought to live and
behave and to please God so you would abound more and more. You would learn and grow more
and more, for ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus, for this is the will of
God even your sanctification, that you should abstain from fornication: that every one of you should know how to possess his
vessel in sanctification and honor; not in the lust of concupiscence, or evil thinking and evil imaginations. Even as the Gentiles which know not God: that no man go beyond and defraud his brother in any matter:
because as the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified. If you defraud your brother,
God will reward you for your evil deed for God has not called us onto uncleanness but onto holiness.
He therefore that despiseth; despiseth not a man, but despiseth God; who hath also
given unto us his Holy Spirit. If you despise another man to the point where you are taking advantage of Him, you are
despising the Holy Spirit in that man. You are despising your brother. You are despising a son of your Father the great God,
and you are despising someone who has been atoned for by Jesus Christ and who is loved by Christ and loved by the Father.
Do you honestly think that the Father and Christ like that attitude? I have four children who are all in their 20’s
now. The oldest is 30 years old. And whenever one of them started abusing one of the others, I didn’t like it. It offended
me. It offended me first because I felt sorry for the one being abused and hurt, and second because I felt sorry for the abuser
knowing that he would grow up to be a bully and an abuser and would meet his match someday, and get his face pushed down.
So, to protect the one being abused and to teach the abuser the way of life which will lead to his future peace,
I would take that one aside and I would attempt to explain and teach him the way of life, the way to peace and harmony and
the way to avoid conflict. And that is what Paul did to the Thessalonians and to everyone he preached to. He taught them the
way of life which is God’s commandments which show us how to avoid conflict and they lead to life. And God is the same
way. He is not going to tolerate one of his children abusing the other children. He will correct the abuser and eventually
if the abuser will not be corrected, he will be rejected from the body of Christ, the household of faith. We are not to abuse
one another or take advantage of one another or defraud one another and we are certainly not to look down at each other for
any reason whatsoever: because of poverty, because of wealth, because of race, no, no, no. We are all children of our Father
and there is no race and there is no Greek or Jew or any such thing with Him.
Through God’s spirit we can learn to love one another, and indeed you can do it But
as teaching brotherly love, you need not that I write to you, for you yourselves are taught of God to love one another. And
indeed you do it toward all the brethren which are in all Macedonia, but we beseech you
brethren that you increase more and more in your love and that you study to be quiet and
to do your own business and to work with your own hands as we commanded you that you may walk honestly toward them that are
without and that you may have lack of nothing.
He is saying here that; we encourage you to work for your living and not be a burden to others so that those
who are outside of faith can look and say, “These are honest, hardworking people, good people,” and also so that
you will not lack anything that you need because you will be earning a decent living. But I would
not have you to be ignorant brethren concerning them which are asleep or that are now dead that you sorrow not even as those
which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus, will
God bring with Him. Jesus Christ was the pioneer of our salvation. He went through death
for us and he was raised to life as a pioneer so that we could see and know and understand that it can be done. It has been
done and therefore we can have faith that it will happen to us if we are faithful to God and keep his commandments.
For this, we say unto you by the word of the Lord that we which are alive and remain
until the coming of the Lord shall not prevent or perceive those which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from
heaven with a shout and with the voice of the archangel and with the trump of God and the dead in Christ shall rise first.
That is the Lord Jesus Christ himself shall come to gather up His bride and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the
Lord Jesus Christ in the air and so shall we ever be with the Lord, wherefore comfort one another with these words.
Going further on this subject, we have a very good article on the subject of the wedding feast and the marriage
of the Lamb at our website and it would be a good idea to read through that which is what Paul is referring to here in the
first book of Thessalonians. And we see that this book of Thessalonians is about encouraging the brethren to continue in their
love for one another and in their love for God and in keeping the commandments of God and is encouraging them by offering
them and reminding them of the hope of the resurrection.
Now in chapter 5: But of the times and seasons, brethren you have no need that I write to you. You don’t need me to tell
you about the times and the seasons for yourselves know perfectly well that the day of the Lord
or the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ so comes as a thief in the night, that is, it comes unexpectedly and suddenly.
Verse 3: For when they shall say peace and safety, then sudden destruction comes
upon them as travail upon a woman with child and they shall not escape. At TheShiningLight website, I have quoted this
verse over and over, perhaps a dozen or more times because this is critical and very important. When they shall declare peace
and safety, sudden destruction shall come as a thief in the night. Suddenly; by surprise, unexpectedly: they will think that
they have achieved peace, and bang, it will collapse into conflict and destruction.
For a long time, it has been taught in the Church of God and in protestant religions that the tribulation is
a period of time of three and a half years, but the 70th week of the 70-Week Prophecy: the full week is explained by saying that the false prophet will make a seven-year treaty with the Jews, and for three and
a half years, they will have their daily sacrifice and then the sacrifice will be stopped and the City of Jerusalem occupied.
Once again: they will state that the 70th week of Daniel’s 70 weeks’ prophecy represents a seven-year
period in which the false prophet makes a treaty with the Jews and they begin a daily sacrifice, which they carry out for
three and a half years; after which that sacrifice is stopped and the tribulation begins with the occupation of Jerusalem
that lasts for three and a half years.
We know, brethren, that this cannot be true. It cannot be true because Paul tells us
so. He says that when they shall declare peace and safety, sudden destruction shall come upon them; not three and
a half years later, but when they make the declaration. When you see a false prophet going to Jerusalem and he has power to
do miracles and he goes up on the holy place and he makes a declaration; or a declaration is made by the parties concerned
that a peace agreement has been reached and he goes up there. He visits that holy place Then know and understand that the
tribulation will break out suddenly, immediately, instantly, almost perhaps within minutes or hours. As Jesus said in Matthew
24, flee for your life. Don’t even stop to get your coat. When you see the abomination, go to the holy place. So,
we know that there will not be three and a half years of peace during which sacrifices will be offered. This is not true.
Furthermore, this is an old protestant explanation which has been around for a long time and the book of Daniel
and the prophets were sealed until the end. Therefore, this cannot be true because of that. Paul tells us; when they shall
say peace and safety, then sudden, immediate trial, tribulation, destruction will come; immediately at the time that this
peace and safety is declared. There will not be three and a half years of peace. There will not be any lengthy period of peace.
It will not even be weeks of peace. There will be immediate destruction, immediate, and sudden, and it will come with a declaration
that peace and security or safety has been achieved. This is very, very, very important brethren to understand the prophecies
This particular prophecy and this 70th week prophecy are vital to your physical well-being and future.
And I will tell you that the only way that you can understand these things is to seek the Lord your God with all your heart,
wholeheartedly, with absolute commitment and seek to keep all of His commandments with all of your might; and that involves
keeping the Sabbath as He commanded the Sabbath to be kept. And we have some good articles on the Sabbath: and no, it is not
right to buy and sell on the Sabbath. It is wrong to be a partaker of other men’s sins. It is wrong to participate with
other people in their sins and it is wrong to go out to restaurants or grocers or any place else and buy on the Sabbath day.
If you do that, your sin will separate you from God and you will not have a good understanding of these things because God’s
spirit will not strive with you and will not force you to go where you refuse to follow. It will simply leave you alone. You
are quenching the Holy Spirit of God by breaking the commandments regarding Sabbath day. And that will lead you: your lack
of respect, if you have such a lack of respect, will lead you away from God, and you will fall into all of these errors; such
as this error regarding the 70 weeks’ prophecy. There will not be a period of peace, only a declaration of peace.
I almost never claim to say anything in the name of the Lord. Well, we have it here right in the Holy Scripture.
Paul writes: When they shall peace and safety; when a declaration of peace and safety
or security is made, sudden destruction will come. That is the word of the Lord, but ye brethren are not in darkness that is you
Thessalonians who are full of love for God and for each other. You are known by your love. You love God. You love his commandments.
You seek to please God and you are not in darkness that, that day should overtake you as a thief.
You are all the children of light and the children of the day. You are not of the night and are not of the darkness.
Therefore, let us not sleep as others do, but let us watch and be sober.
And those people who are filled with love for God who care enough about God to try and please him, who care about
the things of God, who care about pleasing God and keeping his commandments and doing what He says because they love their
Father. Those who are filled with such love and such faithfulness are not the children of darkness and they are not the children
of the night. They are the children of the light and of the day, and they shall see these things coming and they shall know
what is happening and understand what is happening and they shall be prepared for it. Even as it was that those who were seeking
the Lord with all their hearts recognized Him when He came the first time. Even so, it is those who are seeking God with all
their hearts, seeking the coming of the Lord with all their hearts; who will understand and see these things happening at
For they that sleep, sleep in the night, and they that are drunkards are drunken
in the night. But let us who are of the day, let us be sober that is levelheaded, even minded, putting on the breastplate of faith and love. Let us be filled with the love of God and faith in the promises
of God and in the word of God in the Holy Scriptures; let us not go and see what Nostradamus said or the I Ching or the Maya.
Let’s go and see what Almighty God had written in His word. Let us put on the breastplate of faith and love with the
things of God and faith in the word of God and for an helmet the hope of salvation. That
is, the hope of deliverance from the darkness that fills this world for God has not appointed
us to wrath or to destruction or correction, but he has appointed us who are filled with his love and who are willing
to please Him. He has appointed us to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ who died for
us, that whether we are awake or sleep, whether we are living or dead, we should live
together with Him when He comes.
Wherefore, comfort yourselves together and edify one another even as also you do.
I know you’re doing this. Please continue doing it. Comfort one another. Encourage one another. Help one another and
we beseech you brethren to know them which labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you. That is, look around
and see who is teaching the things of God and respect those people, not because they’re great people but respect what
they are trying to do and respect God’s word, and yes, by all means, check up on what they are saying and find out whether
they are really teaching God’s word or not and hold them up to the standard of Holy Scripture but respect them for what
they are trying to do.
And we beseech you brethren, to know them which labor among you and are over you
in the Lord and admonish you and to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake and be at peace among yourselves.
That is, there should not be strife among you. You should be peaceable. Now we exhort you brethren.
Warn them that are unruly, comfort the feeble minded, support the weak, be patient toward all, see that none renders evil
for evil unto anyone but ever follow that which is good both among yourselves and to all people. Rejoice evermore and pray
without ceasing and everything give thanks for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. Quench not the Spirit
and we quench the Spirit by not following where it leads and by refusing to keep God’s commandments and by being willing
to compromise with God’s commandments and compromise with God’s word and by letting anyone or anything come between
us and God. All these things quench the Spirit. And if the Spirit be quenched sooner or later, it is going to go out, the
last flickering embers are going to go out and it is not going to be there anymore. Despise not
prophesyings or inspired speaking and prove all things hold fast that which is good.
As I just said a few moments ago, prove all things, hold the words of all people up to the standard of God’s
word absolutely and abstain from all appearance of evil. Again regarding the Sabbath, abstain
from the appearance of evil and the very God of peace sanctify you wholly and I pray God our whole spirit and soul and body
be preserved blameless until the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. And that is your whole spirit, your body and your
very being should be preserved blameless. That is what Paul is asking for or desiring that we should be preserved in both
body and spirit, blameless until the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
is He that calls you who will also do it. The one who calls you will perform His purpose and fulfill His promises.
Brethren, pray for us. With all the brethren and with a holy kiss, I charge you by the Lord that
this epistle be read unto all the Holy brethren. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you, Amen.
In His letters to the Thessalonians, Paul is trying to encourage people who are basically faithful, loving, caring,
commandment keeping, citizens of the kingdom of God; its future citizens. They are subject to their heavenly Father, and we
who are subject to our heavenly Father; who love and care for him with all our hearts and are dedicated to Him and are willing
to please him by keeping his commandments: are the citizens of the Kingdom of God!
These letters to the Thessalonians are also written directly to us. We are
the children of the day and of the light; if we truly love God and keep all of his commandments.
We are going to go on now into the second letter
to the Thessalonians which is going to give us some more understanding of the end times.
Paul, Silvanus and Timotheus
unto the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, grace unto you and peace from God our Father
and the Lord Jesus Christ. We are bound to thank God always for you brethren, as it is meet or suitable because that your faith grows exceedingly and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth.
Your love for one another is growing and abounding, and your faith is also growing and abounding. We are giving thanks to
God for this so that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith
in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure. And it is almost going without saying that God’s people
will endure persecutions and trials in this world.
Verse 5, which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God for
which you will also suffer. Paul says it is a token of the righteousness of God that God will reward you and you will
be worthy of his kingdom because you have suffered so much for that kingdom. Seeing it is a righteous
thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you. Those who trouble you or persecute you now will
have their time and God will correct them and trouble them. And to you, who are troubled, rest
with us when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire taking vengeance on them
that know not God and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ that obey not the commandments of God.
The gospel of Jesus Christ is that we should keep the commandments of God, and in doing so, we shall enter into
God’s kingdom. Jesus Christ came to be the sacrifice, to atone for our sins; for sins repented of, for sins turned away
from. If we continue then in sin, we make a mockery of his sacrifice and we are not counted under that sacrifice. Only if
we turn from sin to build a new life in godliness will we then be worthy to enter God’s kingdom. We cannot build again
that which has been destroyed and paid for. You must build a new life in godliness and we do that through the power of God’s
spirit by keeping God’s commandments.
It says in Verse 8, a flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God and that obey not the gospel of
our Lord Jesus Christ and who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence
of the Lord and from the glory of His power when He shall come to be glorified in his saints and to be admired in all them
that believe [because our testimony among you was believed] in that day because you believe what we said. You believe
the gospel that we preach. You believe the Holy Scriptures. You shall be one with Christ in that day. Wherefore, also we pray always for you that our God would count you worthy of this calling and fulfill all
the good pleasure of his goodness and the work of faith with power: that the name of our Lord
Jesus Christ maybe glorified in you and ye in him according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
That is, the eternal Jesus Christ, who is eternal; will be glorified in you because you have kept His commandments
and you have kept the Father’s commandments. He has atoned for you. He will then present you to his Father as a part
of his new bride, and Christ will be glorified in you. That is, His glory in you, has helped you to overcome and he has saved
you and atoned for your sin. He has strengthened you and empowered you to overcome through the power of his Spirit. That is
his glory. You are his glory because he has saved you and when you are saved and change into spirit you have become a living
testament to His glory.
If he dwells in you, then his glory is in you!
Now, we beseech you brethren by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and by our gathering
together into him that ye be not soon shaken in mind or be troubled either by a spirit or by word nor by letters from us as
of the day of Christ is at hand that no man deceive you by any means for that day shall not come except there come a falling
away first, which has already happened. The so-called Church of God is split into [many different] groups and very,
very few people within those groups are dedicated to the Father and his commandments anymore. They are dedicated to their
groups, or their leaders, or their cause, but they are not dedicated to their God. If they were dedicated to their God, they
would be obeying him and keeping his commandments.
Let no man deceive you by any means for that day shall not come except there comes a
falling away first and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition, so he is talking here about a man who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God or that is worshipped.
He says, “I have the authority to bind and
lose God’s Word, to decide for myself what people should do; and I have the authority to decide for the people which
of the commandments they should keep and which they do not have to keep. I have total authority over the people and I have
total authority over God’s word to decide for myself in my own opinion what is right and what is wrong.”
That is called the Primacy of Peter. That is the doctrine or the belief that a man as the head of the church
can decide for himself what is right or wrong and can bind and lose whatever he wants. He has exulted himself above God. He
has exulted himself above all that is called God so that he sits in judgment of the Word of God and decides for himself what
to do; and decides for himself what is right and what is wrong. In the eyes of God, this man is an abomination; and that goes
by extension, to be applied to any man who adopts the Primacy of Peter. I don’t care whether his name is the Pope or
whether his name is Herbert W. Armstrong. If they adopt this doctrine; until they repent, they have exulted themselves above
God; and they are an abomination to God. They need to repent quickly and the people need to recognize this damnable heresy
for what it is. That it exults men above God and therefore; it is the most extreme execration imaginable. Who opposes and exults himself above all that is God or that is worshipped; so that he as God sits in the temple
of God. That is, he has the appearance of being God, sitting in the temple [church] of God, showing
himself that he is God.
This is the Final False Prophet; that great deceiver who sits at the head of a deceived church [claiming that they are God’s
church] and declaring that he has the ultimate moral authority over all things [including God’s Word].
Now, what is a God? What did Satan say to the woman in the garden? When you decide for yourself whether to take
this or not, when you begin to decide right and wrong for yourself, you shall be a God. You shall be as gods. You shall be
a God unto yourself. And this man by deciding for himself, what is right and wrong becomes a god unto himself and shows himself
[claims by his actions] that he is God because he is the decider of right and wrong. He is the final and ultimate moral authority
for the people. He has set himself up to be the moral authority for the people in place of God. Remember
you not that when I was yet with you, I told you these things and now you know what withholds that he might be revealed in
his time. It is the power of God that has held back this person and held back this ultimate deception, but an ultimate
deceiver is still coming.
Until now, many have come claiming the Primacy of Peter and claiming to be some great person, but there is going
to be an ultimate deceiver, an ultimate final false prophet, and the climax of all false prophets who have gone before. And
now you know what withholds and it is the plan of God and the power of God to fulfill his plan which is holding this man back
until the appointed time. For the mystery of iniquity thus already work. Only he who now lets,
or restrains, will [continue to] restrain until he be taken out of the way. This final mystery of iniquity will be restrained
and will not be allowed to come until the appointed time and then shall that wicked one be revealed
whom the eternal or the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming.
So, we know that this was not
some man who is now dead. It is not Joseph Tkatch or Herbert Armstrong or anybody else who was the final false prophet. Even
though these people did believe in the Primacy of Peter and did exalt themselves above God, they were not the final false
prophet; because they are not alive now and the final false prophet will be destroyed by the brightness of the coming of Christ.
Even him who’s whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and
lying wonders and will all deceivableness of unrighteousness and them that perish because they receive not the love of the
truth that they might be saved.
A certain person has been preaching that Joseph Tkatch was the final false
prophet. Well, is Joseph Tkatch Sr. alive now? Has Christ come yet and did Joseph Tkatch do all manner of miracles and signs
and lying wonders? I think not. It is clear he did not and he is not alive and he was not destroyed by Christ at Christ’s
coming. Therefore, what is being taught about him is utterly false. It is not true. He did go astray. He did deceive others,
but he is no different than any other false teacher. He is not and was not the man of sin, the final false prophet.
And for this cause, God shall send the people them
strong delusion that they should believe a lie. It is because they received not the love of the truth that they might
be saved. Because they don’t love the truth, they will believe a lie. That they all might
be dammed who believed not the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
People who go running after false teachers and false religions because
they don’t love the word of God are going to be deceived, and in so doing, they will eventually be damned if they don’t
repent. God sees and God knows those who run to his Word; and those who run to the teachings and prophecies of
the heathen! Verse 12 of Chapter 2. But we are bound to give thanks always
to God for you brethren, beloved of the Lord because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification
of the spirit and belief of the truth, whereunto he called you by our gospel to obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
That is, you shall be glorified in the resurrection as Christ was glorified when he was resurrected. Therefore,
brethren stand fast and hold the traditions which you have been taught whether by word or our epistle.
Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself
and God even our Father which have loved us and have given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace.
That is, we have hope because of his forgiveness. Comfort your hearts and establish you. Paul prays that the Father will comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work.
Finally, brethren pray for us that the word of the Lord have free course and be
glorified even as it is with you. Pray that our preaching of the word may bear much fruit even as it did with you and that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men for all men have not faith. But the
Lord is faithful who shall establish you and keep you from evil and we have confidence in the Lord touching you that you both
do and will do the things which we command you and to keep you from evil does not necessarily mean that you won’t
have troubles. It means it will keep you from doing evil. Keep you away from being seduced
Verse 5: And the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the patient
waiting for Christ. Now we command you brethren in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ that you withdraw yourselves from every
brother that walks disorderly and not after the tradition which you received of us. For yourselves know how ye ought to follow
us for we behave not ourselves disorderly among you, neither did we eat any man’s bread for nothing, but wrought with
labor and travail night and day, that we might not be chargeable to any of you. Not because we have not power, but to make
ourselves an example unto you to follow us.
Paul had the power and the right to accept gifts from the people. He chose rather to support himself as an
example for the people and that is a very good thing. It is too bad that so many who have enriched themselves on the backs
of the poor brethren would be unwilling to follow such an example. For even when we were with
you, this we commanded you that if any would not work, neither should he eat. For we hear that there are some which walk among
you disorderly working not at all but are busy bodies. Now then there are such we command and exhort by our Lord Jesus Christ
that with quietness they work and eat their own bread, but ye brethren be not weary and well doing, and if any men obey not
our word by this epistle, note that man and have no company with them that he may be ashamed. Notice Paul is not saying
if someone is doing something wrong, the minister has to have a secret court and pass judgment without getting the facts.
No, he says; have you seen someone going astray [who is adamant and unrepentant]? Then note that man; and the
brethren everyone together; is to deal with the situation [with ministerial; guidance, but certainly not in secret] It is
not something which is to be done in secret. It is something which needs to be done by the whole congregation; yet count this person who is rejected, not an enemy but admonish him like a brother.
Now the Lord of peace himself, give you peace always by all means, the Lord be with you
all. This salutation of Paul with my own hand which is the token in every epistle so I write. The grace of our Lord Jesus
Christ be with you all, amen.
James David Malm
James David Malm