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1 Thessalonians 5, 2 Thessalonians 1-3, 1 Timothy 1
"5:2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night" 1 Thessalonians 5:2 KJV), and other verses elsewhere, have been misread to mean that there is a "rapture," an erroneous doctrine that is merely a misunderstanding of the first resurrection (see The Raptures). Christ will seem to come suddenly only because people who die do not sense the passage of time until the day of Christ's return; from the perspective of the dead, they seem to go instantly from death to resurrection, even though years, or many centuries, may have passed (see Could Christ Return Tonight?).
"5:1 But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. 5:2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. 5:3 For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as Travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.
Paul ends his letter with some final instructions and a piece of advice that all Christians should live by: "5:21 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good" (1 Thessalonians 5:21 KJV).
"5:12 And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you; 5:13 And to esteem them very highly in love for their work's sake. And be at peace among yourselves. 5:14 Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men [see Christian Living]. 5:15 See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men.
2 Thessalonians Chapter 1
As with the first, Paul's second epistle to the church at Thessalonica was probably written from Corinth. The second epistle was written a few months, not more than a year, later and goes into greater detail about the time of Christ's return - including a great apostasy led by a "man of sin": "2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; 2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God" (2 Thessalonians 2:3-4 KJV).
"1:1 Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheos, unto the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: 1:2 Grace unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
2 Thessalonians Chapter 2
The "man of lawlessness" will be manifested by one of two men, whose positions of power have already existed for centuries (see Emperors and Popes, Emperor and The Little Big Horn). What is Christ going to do to those two men when He comes? "19:19 And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army [see War With The Lamb]. 19:20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone" (Revelation 19:19-20 KJV).
"2:1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him [see Spiritual and Physical Gatherings], 2:2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition [see Sons Of Perdition In Prophecy]; 2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God [see The Spirit of Antichrist].
Throughout all of time, regardless of the severity of Trials and Tribulations (see also No Pain, No Gain), Christ's people are to remain Bulwarks Of The Truth, to not merely "hold the line," but to advance it regardless of the strength of the opposition: "4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you" (James 4:7 KJV).
"2:13 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning [see How Old Is God? and Christ The Creator] chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit [see Sanctify and The Cure For The Carnal Mind] and belief of the truth: 2:14 Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ [see To Meet The Lord In The Air]. 2:15 Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.
2 Thessalonians Chapter 3
Paul concludes his second epistle to the Thessalonian Christians (and to you, if you read the Bible) with request for prayer, warnings and encouragements, with, as always, "3:5 And the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting for Christ" (2 Thessalonians 3:5 KJV).
"3:1 Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may have free course, and be glorified, even as it is with you: 3:2 And that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men: for all men have not faith [see The Warning About Grievous Wolves]. 3:3 But the Lord is faithful, who shall stablish you, and keep you from evil. 3:4 And we have confidence in the Lord touching you, that ye both do and will do the things which we command you. 3:5 And the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God [see A Pure Heart], and into the patient waiting for Christ." (2 Thessalonians 3:1-5 KJV)
Paul warned against idleness, keeping in mind that The Fourth Commandment (see How To Be A True Christian - Lesson 4) also commands God's people to work for six days, just as The Lord worked (see Christ The Creator) for six days before He rested i.e. "20:8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 20:9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: 20:10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: 20:11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it" (Exodus 20:8-11 KJV).
"3:6 Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly [see Reprobate], and not after the tradition which he received of us. 3:7 For yourselves know how ye ought to follow us: for we behaved not ourselves disorderly among you; 3:8 Neither did we eat any man's bread for nought; but wrought with labour and travail night and day, that we might not be chargeable to any of you: 3:9 Not because we have not power, but to make ourselves an ensample unto you to follow us. 3:10 For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.
Paul's final Salutations:
"3:16 Now the Lord of peace himself give you peace always by all means. The Lord be with you all. 3:17 The salutation of Paul with mine own hand, which is the token in every epistle: so I write. 3:18 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen." (2 Thessalonians 3:16-18 KJV)
1 Timothy Chapter 1
Timothy, from the Greek Timotheos, was a young man who grew to become one of the apostle Paul's closest and most trusted associates - and eventually an evangelist and apostle in his own right. Timothy is mentioned (either as Timothy or Timotheos) prominently in Acts, Romans, Hebrews, first and second Corinthians, first and second Thessalonians, Philippians, Colossians, Philemon. As well, two of Paul's epistles are addressed to Timothy himself, including this one.
"1:1 Paul, an Apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God our Saviour, and Lord Jesus Christ, which is our hope; 1:2 Unto Timothy, my own son in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord." (1 Timothy 1:1-2 KJV)
The danger from false teachers has always existed, even in the time of Paul, who frequently saw his efforts spoiled by those who perverted the Truth, "1:7 Desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm" (1 Timothy 1:7 KJV). Why did it happen? Usually because they ignored the Word of God and taught their own self-serving, and self-rightous, philosophy. Christ starkly warned what is going to happen to those who do that (see I Did It My Way).
"1:3 As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine, 1:4 Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do. 1:5 Now the end of the commandment is charity out of A Pure Heart, and of a good Conscience [see also Compassion], and of faith unfeigned: 1:6 From which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling; 1:7 Desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm.
Paul's own example of being a Christian persecutor before he became a Christian apostle shows why we are to "love our enemies" - they might, after their eyes are opened (see The Cure For The Carnal Mind and When Their Eyes Were Opened), turn out to be fine Christians. "1:12 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry; 1:13 Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief" (1 Timothy 1:12-13 KJV).
"1:12 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry; 1:13 Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief [see On The Road To Damascus]. 1:14 And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.
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