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mfowler12
Oct 9th 2008, 03:36 PM
I'm a fairly new person to reading the bible and here recently I've spent some time reading through this board and trying to get a feel for other Christians. I usually read threads that pertain to the rapture. It seems like the rapture is the only thing that I really get excited about when reading or talking about the end times. I'm not sure which side to follow with and starting to think that people picking sides is a ploy of the devil to force us apart and forget the two greatest commands that Jesus told us about while here on this earth.

However, I know that discussion with opposing viewpoints can actually shed light on the facts and on opinions. So, I'm going to go against my opinion of discussing/arguing about the rapture because I would like to get some different point of views.

So, on to the point of my thread. I saw in another post on this forum about 2 Thessalonians 2. Such an interesting chapter that I had never connected with the end times, but after reading it, it appears to be very significant to the discussions. Yet, this is the first I've seen of this mention.

I will quote this entire chapter here (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2%20Thessalonians%202%20;&version=50;51;31;9;49;) of the versions that I read on biblegateway.com.

My question and point for the discussion is verse 6 and 7. What is holding back the man of sin? What is causing our enemy to be held down until it has been taken away? Could it be the Church? The Holy Spirit? What is it?

From my reading, and my opinion, it appears this is talking about some form of rapture of the Church/Holy Spirit. Now, I feel that if people want an understanding of the bible, we are to pray for wisdom and the Spirit within us will give us the answer. I feel that when I read this this morning, it was explained that this is the rapture and the only way that the end will come is by the Church/Holy Spirit being removed from the earth.

Thoughts?

Rookie78
Oct 9th 2008, 03:54 PM
I myself believe that it is indeed the Holy Spirit. What could possibly hold back Satan and his man of lawlessness but something supernatural? The Holy Spirit and HIS work through Christians seems to be the only one that fits the bill.

IBWatching
Oct 9th 2008, 04:32 PM
...My question and point for the discussion is verse 6 and 7. What is holding back the man of sin? What is causing our enemy to be held down until it has been taken away? Could it be the Church? The Holy Spirit? What is it?...

The restrainer is referred to as both "he" and "what". Here's a passage from John that will help:


1 John 4:3 and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the {spirit} of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world. 4 You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.Note the word "them". It includes both the spirit of the antichrist (satan) which was already present in the world and the future Antichrist. The Church overcomes them both via the indwelling of the "He" that is in us, Who is greater than he that is in the world satan). In regards to the Trinity, you seem to have 3 choices here for the "He" (Father, Son,m Holy Spirit). John solves that problem in the context. Both before and after this passage, the issue John is dealing with is the Indwelling of Jesus Christ:


1 John 4:13 By this we know that we abide in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit.Lay these passaages besides 2 Thess 2:6,7 and you should see nothing Paul says there disputes what John said. The restrainer is the Indwelling of Jesus Christ ("he") in the Church ("what").

Rookie78
Oct 9th 2008, 04:43 PM
Whelp, that settles it then. These verses are conclusive proof of a pre-trib rapture! Ha! :P

cwb
Oct 9th 2008, 05:09 PM
Whelp, that settles it then. These verses are conclusive proof of a pre-trib rapture! Ha! :P

yeah, but post-tribbers will use the exact same verses to "prove" post-trib.

IBWatching
Oct 9th 2008, 05:11 PM
Whelp, that settles it then. These verses are conclusive proof of a pre-trib rapture! Ha! :P

Paul was talking about the Day Of The Lord in 2 Thess 2. As the poster above pointed out, you've still got some dots to connect.

Rookie78
Oct 9th 2008, 06:04 PM
Paul was talking about the Day Of The Lord in 2 Thess 2. As the poster above pointed out, you've still got some dots to connect.

Is the day of the Lord the 1000 year reign (7th day of rest)? If so, the antichrist would not be revealed then, he has to be revealed between pre and mid tribulation. Maybe I'm missing something, I'm no Bible scholar.

Forgiven Alaskan
Oct 9th 2008, 06:05 PM
I will now state very matter of factly that those versus referr to polka doted elphants in a circus and you will all believe that it is true. ;)

TexasBeliever
Oct 9th 2008, 10:09 PM
mfowler12:

You might find it very interesting to know, that from my observations as well as personal experience, most people who see the scriptures pointing to a posttrib rapture, came to that conclusion after being pretrib.

And this is how it happened: we were bothered by people having so many different takes on the subject and knew only one was right. Or we just weren't convinced that all the pieces fit in a pretrib scenario. Or we had only been exposed to pretrib because that was the "mainstream" thought in all the book stores. Or a combination of all.
So we started digging into the scriptures with a finetooth comb all over again.
As I stated in another thread, I banished every preconceived thought I ever had and every book or statement I ever read on any theory, and went directly to the statements of Jesus in the gosples and in Revelation (which is the Revelation of Jesus Christ that He gave to John)
Then on paper I made two columns and wrote down exactly what He said and what He DIDN'T say. By the time I was finished I was no longer in a state of confusion.

jeffweeder
Oct 9th 2008, 10:57 PM
Good Morning

2thess 2:1

Now we request you, brethren, with regard to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him,

This would be the rapture, as its the time he gathers us to himself.

2thess 2:3

Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy[Or falling away from the faith] comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction,

So the day of our gathering will not happen until the apostasy and the man of sin is revealed..


2thess 2:6-8

And you know what restrains him now, so that in his time he will be revealed.
7 For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only he who now restrains will do so until he is taken out of the way.
8 Then that lawless one will be revealed whom the Lord will slay with the breath of His mouth and bring to an end by the appearance of His coming

The restrainer cannot be the Holy Spirit or the Church because we are gathered to him at his coming--see v 1. To say it is would contradict the above verses and see us gathered before the man o sin is revealed.


When Jesus comes he destroys the man of sin, and when he comes he gathers us.

So who is the restrainer?
At the time this was written Rome was ruling.
We know from Dan 7 that out of rome (4th beast) ten horns would rise and after that the little boasting horn would be revealed.
So rome would have to be out of the way for the rest of that prophecy to be fulfilled.

Maybe this is why Paul is so vague as to the identity of the restrainer.
To say publically that Rome would fall would have been dangerous thing to do back then.

God bless

BroRog
Oct 10th 2008, 01:35 AM
I'm a fairly new person to reading the bible and here recently I've spent some time reading through this board and trying to get a feel for other Christians. I usually read threads that pertain to the rapture. It seems like the rapture is the only thing that I really get excited about when reading or talking about the end times. I'm not sure which side to follow with and starting to think that people picking sides is a ploy of the devil to force us apart and forget the two greatest commands that Jesus told us about while here on this earth.

However, I know that discussion with opposing viewpoints can actually shed light on the facts and on opinions. So, I'm going to go against my opinion of discussing/arguing about the rapture because I would like to get some different point of views.

So, on to the point of my thread. I saw in another post on this forum about 2 Thessalonians 2. Such an interesting chapter that I had never connected with the end times, but after reading it, it appears to be very significant to the discussions. Yet, this is the first I've seen of this mention.

I will quote this entire chapter here (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2%20Thessalonians%202%20;&version=50;51;31;9;49;) of the versions that I read on biblegateway.com.

My question and point for the discussion is verse 6 and 7. What is holding back the man of sin? What is causing our enemy to be held down until it has been taken away? Could it be the Church? The Holy Spirit? What is it?

From my reading, and my opinion, it appears this is talking about some form of rapture of the Church/Holy Spirit. Now, I feel that if people want an understanding of the bible, we are to pray for wisdom and the Spirit within us will give us the answer. I feel that when I read this this morning, it was explained that this is the rapture and the only way that the end will come is by the Church/Holy Spirit being removed from the earth.

Thoughts?

To discover the identity of the restrainer, all we have to do is create a dosser on the man of sin, and think about who will be able to keep the man of sin from accomplishing his goals and thwart his instruments and methods.

Dosser: man of sin.

Arises during a time of apostasy.
____Apostasy: the formal abandonment or renunciation of one's religion

Alias: son of destruction, man of lawlessness

Exalts himself above every so-called God or object of worship.
____Possible corollary: the formal renunciation of ALL religion.

Claims divinity for himself.

He comes in accord with Satan's activity, using false signs and wonders, and all deception.

He comes at a time when the world is ripe for deception because those who are being deceived do not love the truth and they are deluded.

What conditions must be met in order for the man of sin to arise?

1. The world must be in a state of apostasy.
2. The world must be ripe and ready to accept the word of a deceiver.
3. The world will be in a spiritual state characterized by a wish to take pleasure in wickedness rather than face the truth.

What are the goals of the restrainer?

The restrainer must keep the world from falling into apostasy.
The restrainer must promote the truth and keep the world from falling into spiritual darkness.
The restrainer must be able to convict the world of sin, and reason with a world willing to bow to the truth.

Who has been assigned tasks with these goals?

Verse 13 gives us a clue.

But we should always give thanks to God for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God has chosen you from the beginning for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and faith in the truth.

Jesus explicitly makes the Holy Spirit, in concert with the Apostles responsible for meeting these goals.

When the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, that is the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify about Me, and you will testify also, because you have been with Me from the beginning.

. . .

But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you. And He, when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment; concerning sin, because they do not believe in Me; and concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father and you no longer see Me; and concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged. John 15:26-27, 16:7-11

The Holy Spirit is keeping the man of lawlessness from appearing due to his influence in the world concerning sin, judgment, and righteousness. Once the Holy Spirit steps aside, wickedness and deception will have free reign.

Ethnikos
Oct 10th 2008, 02:49 AM
My question and point for the discussion is verse 6 and 7. What is holding back the man of sin? What is causing our enemy to be held down until it has been taken away? Could it be the Church? The Holy Spirit? What is it?

Paul was talking about the Jews being kicked out of Rome by Claudius, back in 49 AD. He said that was how the Antichrist was removed, back in his day. So it was the power of Rome that kept the Jews down, who are against Christ.
Oct of this year is when it is revealed that the Vatican is now under the rule of the Jews (who should be called Zionists, in today's terminology). Evidence is the Directive to the Bishops, to take effect immediately, the cessation of the speaking of the Hebrew name of God (YAHWEH) from being done in church. It had been used in certain songs or whatever, regularly in the Mass.
So the Zionists (Antichrist) is in power right now because they gained power over Rome, through control of the banks and using financial coercion. So now the long time enemy has the upper hand to destroy the Christian religion.
This might sound funny but read the Jamieson-Faust-Brown Bible Commentary and tell me if you come up with a different conclusion. This was published in the 1870's and back then, no one would have ever believed that Israel would ever be a nation again, so they did not know how to explain it.

Literalist-Luke
Oct 10th 2008, 03:58 AM
Paul was talking about the Jews being kicked out of Rome by Claudius, back in 49 bc. He said that was how the Antichrist was removed, back in his day. So it was the power of Rome that kept the Jews down, who are against Christ.
Oct of this year is when it is revealed that the Vatican is now under the rule of the Jews (who should be called Zionists, in today's terminology). Evidence is the Directive to the Bishops, to take effect immediately, the cessation of the speaking of the Hebrew name of God (YAHWEH) from being done in church. It had been used in certain songs or whatever, regularly in the Mass.
So the Zionists (Antichrist) is in power right now because they gained power over Rome, through control of the banks and using financial coercion. So now the long time enemy has the upper hand to destroy the Christian religion.
This might sound funny but read the Jamieson-Faust-Brown Bible Commentary and tell me if you come up with a different conclusion. This was published in the 1870's and back then, no one would have ever believed that Israel would ever be a nation again, so they did not know how to explain it.Is this post actually supposed to be taken seriously? Do I hear a "Heil Hitler" in there somewhere?

Ethnikos
Oct 10th 2008, 04:21 AM
Is this post actually supposed to be taken seriously? Do I hear a "Heil Hitler" in there somewhere?
Apparently, back in 1870, they did not have the PC police to go around calling people Nazi's for talking about Jews. Now days everyone is afraid to step on any toes for fear of offending anyone. How else does the Antichrist come to power? If you criticize him, you get beat down by the Koolaide drinking mob.

third hero
Oct 10th 2008, 05:17 AM
My question and point for the discussion is verse 6 and 7. What is holding back the man of sin? What is causing our enemy to be held down until it has been taken away? Could it be the Church? The Holy Spirit? What is it?

In my opinion, the restrainer is the "Hand of God". Here is my evidence. From the 1st century onward, the evil one has been attempting to create his representative. We have countless examples of failed world conquerers. Every single one of them met an early end, before they could conquer the world. Every one of them were thwarted by God.

God has a timeline and a plan in which He will have no one and nothing stop from happening as He sees fit. Jesus implies this in Acts 1:7. The fact that every would-be conquerer was defeated in one way or another for the last 2000 years proves it for me.

Moreover, if the Holy Spirit is removed, then no one can be saved during the Great Tribulation, since the Holy Spirit is the power that frees man from the grips of the evil one. If the Holy Spirit leaves, then mankind is not going to undergo a tribulation, they will suffer their damnation, as surely the Lord would destroy this entire planet, if the Holy Spirit left it. Without the Holy Spirit, no one could be saved.


And since the Holy Spirit is necessary to save souls during the Great Tribulation, the church, the temples of the Holy Spirit, must still be on earth as well, spreading the Gospel and losing their heads for the sake of Lord Jesus.

Therefore, the only one who can restrain the evil one is God, and since God's protection has always in the OT been known as "the Hand of God", then I can only conclude that this "Hand of God", otherwise known as the protection of God, is the restrainer that holds back the schemes of the Evil one.

Literalist-Luke
Oct 10th 2008, 05:26 AM
Apparently, back in 1870, they did not have the PC police to go around calling people Nazi's for talking about Jews. Now days everyone is afraid to step on any toes for fear of offending anyone. How else does the Antichrist come to power? If you criticize him, you get beat down by the Koolaide drinking mob.Oh, I see, you're in the Jewish Antichrist/Jerusalem=Babylon crowd. No use continuing with this then. :no:

Just so you know, I have no greater love for Jews than I do for anybody else. Just from a purely Biblical standpoint, your interpretation is simply incorrect, all feelings regarding Jews aside. I'm sure you'll disagree with that, however, and you have the right to continue being wrong, and I don't wish to derail this thread, nor do I feel like getting into the umpteenth "Who is Babylon" discussion around here in the last few months, so my work is done here.

Actually, I do have one question for you: How do you feel about the Islamic desire for Jewish genocide? Do you agree with Ahmadinajhad (or whatever his name is) that Israel should be "wiped off the map"? From your standpoint, that would spare the world from having to endure the Antichrist, wouldn't it?

Ethnikos
Oct 10th 2008, 05:58 AM
Oh, I see, you're in the Jewish Antichrist/Jerusalem=Babylon crowd. No use continuing with this then. :no:

I have no idea what that is. I am not the biggest expert on eschatology. I have been using that one commentary because it goes into the Greek and explains how the original language was being used. I looked up those verses that the OP was concerned about. They had this interesting historical comment about the, current to his time, removal of the Antichrist. I believe in the apotalismatic principle of interpretation of apocalyptic prophetic type writings. So, you end up with a dual understanding of them. There is something happening close to the prediction and then another fulfillment, later. If the original removal of the mystery of wickedness was the Jews being kicked out, it would seem logical to think that when that thing that was the hindrance goes away, the full manifestation of the wickedness that was previously hidden, would be an outgrowth of the same thing. This seems to me to be what the commentary is saying.
I am not a follower of any particular school of thought concerning the Antichrist, just looking at a concept that was popular among mainstream evangelical Protestants, back in the eighteenth century. If I am not understanding what the commentary is saying you can check it out and see what you think.

"Who is Babylon" I do not think it is one particular place but is global.

How do you feel about the Islamic desire for Jewish genocide?
Not a good thing and there is no simple solution, people need to get it together and stop but I do not expect to see it happening.

...that would spare the world from having to endure the Antichrist, wouldn't it? No and I do not think the Antichrist is Israel or Jewish people. I am talking about Zionists and not the kind who are devout religious people living in Israel. I am talking about people living in the UK, EU and USA who are not particularly nice people but have a lot of money.

Literalist-Luke
Oct 10th 2008, 06:07 AM
I have no idea what that is. I am not the biggest expert on eschatology. I have been using that one commentary because it goes into the Greek and explains how the original language was being used. I looked up those verses that the OP was concerned about. They had this interesting historical comment about the, current to his time, removal of the Antichrist. I believe in the apotalismatic principle of interpretation of apocalyptic prophetic type writings. So, you end up with a dual understanding of them. There is something happening close to the prediction and then another fulfillment, later. If the original removal of the mystery of wickedness was the Jews being kicked out, it would seem logical to think that when that thing that was the hindrance goes away, the full manifestation of the wickedness that was previously hidden, would be an outgrowth of the same thing. This seems to me to be what the commentary is saying.
I am not a follower of any particular school of thought concerning the Antichrist, just looking at a concept that was popular among mainstream evangelical Protestants, back in the eighteenth century. If I am not understanding what the commentary is saying you can check it out and see what you think.OK, thanks for clarifying that. There was a big discussion here a month or so ago where the idea was being put forth that the Babylon of Revelation is actually Jerusalem and the Antichrist is going to be Jewish and that the Jews be would attacking the entire world, or something like that. For a moment there, your post seemed like I had stumbled across another one of those people. Please accept my apologies for misunderstanding you in that way.

To get to what you were talking about, there was a large school of thought in the late 19th Century that believed the Jews were attempting to take over the world. I'm not accusing you of subscribing to Anti-Semitism, but Hitler and the people who went along with his "Final Solution" were among those who bought into that sort of thing.

I can assure you that the Jews are most certainly not in control of the Vatican. Considering that the Vatican has a well-documented history of attempting to obliterate the Jews from the European continent (even to the point of bankrolling Hitler and sending battalions of Jesuit priests into battle with the Wehrmacht), it seems safe to assume that their intended victims are not the ones giving the orders.

Consider this: Go to Revelation 12, look at the woman with the sun, moon, and 12 stars. Then go and read about Joseph's dream in Genesis 37:9-10, compare the symbols between the two passages, and then tell us who you think the woman is that is fleeing into the desert, under God's protection.

And again, please accept my apologies for misunderstanding you. :(

Ethnikos
Oct 10th 2008, 07:17 AM
...look at the woman with the sun, moon, and 12 stars. ...tell us who you think the woman is that is fleeing into the desert, under God's protection.
...accept my apologies...
Don't worry about me, I do not get offended by anything like that. I never read anything in this part of the forum until today. I got interested because all of a sudden there are so many people in this section. People must be worried about the NewWorldOrder being openly advocated on TV, the last two days.
I would have to think the woman is symbolic of the Kingdom of God in general, including the Old Testament believers and the New Testament believers. It is not just the 12 stars but the eagle's wings are reminiscent of the Exodus of Israel from Egypt. Interestingly, the Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary makes the connection between the eagle wings with Rome. I would have to say it makes more sense than what some people think today who connect it to the USA.

Literalist-Luke
Oct 10th 2008, 02:57 PM
I would have to think the woman is symbolic of the Kingdom of God in general, including the Old Testament believers and the New Testament believers. It is not just the 12 stars but the eagle's wings are reminiscent of the Exodus of Israel from Egypt. Interestingly, the Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary makes the connection between the eagle wings with Rome. I would have to say it makes more sense than what some people think today who connect it to the USA.Considering that Jacob tells us himself in Genesis 37 that the sun, moon, and stars are representative of himself and his family, that seems pretty clear that they are, by extension, representative of the nation of Israel. And we see that nation of Israel consistently portrayed throughout the Old Testament prophets as the (unfaithful) bride of God the Father. So when we see the woman in Revelation 12 clothed with the very same symbols as we saw in Genesis 37, it's a very natural assumption that here we have the nation of Israel being attacked by Satan and pursued into the desert.

Ethnikos
Oct 10th 2008, 08:52 PM
...we see the woman in Revelation 12 clothed with the very same symbols as we saw in Genesis 37...
I do not see a direct connection between the symbolism of the two things, (Genisis 37 and Revelation 12).

RevLogos
Oct 10th 2008, 08:57 PM
My question and point for the discussion is verse 6 and 7. What is holding back the man of sin? What is causing our enemy to be held down until it has been taken away? Could it be the Church? The Holy Spirit? What is it?

Thoughts?

Here are a few thoughts to chew on; a possibility I have been considering.

What was the world like before the Flood?
Gen 6:1 And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them,
Gen 6:2 That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose.
Gen 6:4 There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.
Gen 6:5 And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
Horrible isnít it? Not only rampant evil, but something more. These verses suggest something evil had invaded the gene pool.

Satan had gone too far. So what does God do? God destroys everything, save for 8 people.

It has been said that the earth is the kingdom of Satan, our kingdom is not of this earth. Ever stop to wonder what Satan thought of God destroying his kingdom?

There is one place in the Bible where God and Satan actually discuss what Satan can and cannot do. So letís fast forward to Job:
Job 1:6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them.
Job 1:7 And the LORD said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.
What have we here? The Lord, and Satan having a discussion. Then a challenge is issued and look carefully at what God does. God allows Satan to do things that he would not otherwise do:
Job 1:12 And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD.
God does not give Satan power to do things to Job, but God does give Satan permission. This happens again:
Job 2:5 But extend your hand and strike his bone and his flesh, and he will no doubt curse you to your face!"
Job 2:6 So the LORD said to Satan, "All right, he is in your power; only preserve his life."
See whatís happening here?

Consider the possibility that the restrainer is actually an agreement between Satan and the Lord. Satan will restrain his actions and in return the Lord will not again destroy the earth. God allows Satan to deceive but not physically hurt people. Satan agrees not to do the things he had done before the flood.

And so the war between good and evil continues. When the restraint is lifted, what is actually happening is Satan is succumbing to his own failings. Satan is not winning; he canít win. The world is in a perpetual stalemate between good and evil. Satan becomes impatient. Satan makes a decision to violate his own agreement with God.

The first part of the tribulations, including the rise of the beast, are not the wrath of God but are the wrath of Satan. It is only after Satan exceeds his bounds and violates the rules that God returns to take care of business. In violating these rules, Satan essentially concedes defeat. The war between good and evil is over, with God the victor.

One of the problems I have had with the notion that God, or the Holy Spirit, is the restrainer, is that it must be God making the decision to give Satan more power by removing that restraint. I do not see why God would do this. How does that give victory? This theory that the restrainer is Satan himself puts the responsibility entirely back on Satan.

mfowler12
Oct 10th 2008, 09:17 PM
Nice post. That idea provokes a lot of thinking.

Let's continue, biblically of course, not sheer opinion, with how the end times, spoken in the OT and NT goes along with this idea.

How do you see things playing out based on the restrainer being removed. Is that prior to any form of rapture? (Remember that at the beginning of 2 Thess 2 that Paul is talking about being gathered up with the Lord). Do the trumpets, seals, and vials start then? Maybe just God's specific wrath (vials)?

mfowler12
Oct 10th 2008, 09:20 PM
The Holy Spirit is keeping the man of lawlessness from appearing due to his influence in the world concerning sin, judgment, and righteousness. Once the Holy Spirit steps aside, wickedness and deception will have free reign.

Very good post. Do you think that the Holy Spirit being removed would be a rapture of the Church?

mfowler12
Oct 10th 2008, 09:21 PM
Lay these passaages besides 2 Thess 2:6,7 and you should see nothing Paul says there disputes what John said. The restrainer is the Indwelling of Jesus Christ ("he") in the Church ("what").

I'm not sure I understand. You are saying that the "restrainer" is both the Messiah and His church?

BroRog
Oct 10th 2008, 09:28 PM
I wonder if there is an OT reference to Israel awaiting the Messiah as with birth pangs? I thought so, maybe I imagined it.

BroRog
Oct 10th 2008, 09:35 PM
Very good post. Do you think that the Holy Spirit being removed would be a rapture of the Church?

I don't think it's necessarily so. It could be. Or maybe not.

My current theory is that "The Apostasy" is a Gentile falling away from religion. I think the Holy Spirit will still be at work during that time. In my view, the Holy Spirit isn't literally "removed" from the earth. He just steps aside to no longer offer any resistance to the superstition and darkness prevalent then.

The way I see it, God has demonstrated his willingness to wait for people to repent. But he has to put an end to it sometime. There has to be a judgment day -- a final chapter in history.

Partaker of Christ
Oct 10th 2008, 09:44 PM
In my opinion, the restrainer is the "Hand of God". Here is my evidence. From the 1st century onward, the evil one has been attempting to create his representative. We have countless examples of failed world conquerers. Every single one of them met an early end, before they could conquer the world. Every one of them were thwarted by God.

God has a timeline and a plan in which He will have no one and nothing stop from happening as He sees fit. Jesus implies this in Acts 1:7. The fact that every would-be conquerer was defeated in one way or another for the last 2000 years proves it for me.

Moreover, if the Holy Spirit is removed, then no one can be saved during the Great Tribulation, since the Holy Spirit is the power that frees man from the grips of the evil one. If the Holy Spirit leaves, then mankind is not going to undergo a tribulation, they will suffer their damnation, as surely the Lord would destroy this entire planet, if the Holy Spirit left it. Without the Holy Spirit, no one could be saved.


And since the Holy Spirit is necessary to save souls during the Great Tribulation, the church, the temples of the Holy Spirit, must still be on earth as well, spreading the Gospel and losing their heads for the sake of Lord Jesus.

Therefore, the only one who can restrain the evil one is God, and since God's protection has always in the OT been known as "the Hand of God", then I can only conclude that this "Hand of God", otherwise known as the protection of God, is the restrainer that holds back the schemes of the Evil one.

This what I thought, but at the day of Pentecost, the Spirit was poured out on 'all' flesh. Before that He came upon individuals.
In Revelation 7:3, it is said that they [the angels] are given to put a seal on the foreheads of the servants.

So what I am wondering is; could the act of restraining be, the Spirit being poured out on 'all flesh'.
This would perhaps allow for great delusion, and a falling away.

Literalist-Luke
Oct 11th 2008, 01:04 AM
I do not see a direct connection between the symbolism of the two things, (Genisis 37 and Revelation 12).Both passages have a sun, both passages have a moon, and both passages have twelve stars (including Joseph in Genesis 37). If Genesis 37 does not provide the explanation for Revelation 12, then please show me where in the Bible we can get anything about what Revelation 12 means that won't be random guesswork and useless personal opinion.

quiet dove
Oct 11th 2008, 01:42 AM
One of the problems I have had with the notion that God, or the Holy Spirit, is the restrainer, is that it must be God making the decision to give Satan more power by removing that restraint. I do not see why God would do this. How does that give victory? This theory that the restrainer is Satan himself puts the responsibility entirely back on Satan.

I didn't quote the whole post but it was an interesting thought, however, in Thess we are told that the lawlessness is already at work, that would be Satan, but then that the Restrainer "is taken out of the way", how would that apply to your thoughts. So how can the lawlessness at work be "taken out of the way" so that the lawlessness can run amuck and "the" lawless one be revealed.

Ethnikos
Oct 11th 2008, 02:51 AM
Both passages have a sun, both passages have a moon, and both passages have twelve stars (including Joseph in Genesis 37). If Genesis 37 does not provide the explanation for Revelation 12, then please show me where in the Bible we can get anything about what Revelation 12 means that won't be random guesswork and useless personal opinion.Genesis does not explain Revelation in this instance. In today's terminology, you would say the symbols are a brand.
You have to go to the New Testament to find the direct correlations needed to actually explain the vision of the woman.
Like I said earlier, the woman does not represent Israel. It is a universal embodiment, for the purpose of this illustration concerning the war of the beast against God's elect, of the Church.
http://i222.photobucket.com/albums/dd56/jmdewey60/velazquez-immaculate-conception.jpg

wesand24
Oct 14th 2008, 11:12 PM
A "universal embodiment" did not give birth to JESUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

vinsight4u8
Oct 14th 2008, 11:27 PM
The restraner?

Read Daniel 10:21.


2 Thess. 2 is where Paul refers the church to recall what he had taught them when he was with them.

Paul had taught them about the man that wil exalt himself - that Daniel had also prophesied about.
So check Daniel 10:21 and Daniel 11:36.
If people would recall - remember what Paul had preached to them about -they they would know who the restrainer is.

Ethnikos
Oct 15th 2008, 01:50 AM
A "universal embodiment" did not give birth to JESUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1
Don't you think if it meant Jesus, it would just say so? Obviously the woman is not Mary and the child is not Christ. The "Great Wonder in Heaven" is apparently a message constructed in symbolism that combines elements of the stories of Joseph, Israel, Jesus and the Church, all in one picture. So, you can not just pick out one and say, "it is this one". There is a bigger picture here that spans all of history, about the war of Satan against God's chosen.

11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.


The end of the world and the judgment are described just as a natural completion of the past events. That is why the visionary draws one single apocalyptic picture for several events, which can be set apart by a space of centuries, but are very close in their essence.
http://www.orthodoxphotos.com/readings/kingdom/militant.shtml

Literalist-Luke
Oct 15th 2008, 02:16 AM
Genesis does not explain Revelation in this instance. In today's terminology, you would say the symbols are a brand.
You have to go to the New Testament to find the direct correlations needed to actually explain the vision of the woman.
Like I said earlier, the woman does not represent Israel. It is a universal embodiment, for the purpose of this illustration concerning the war of the beast against God's elect, of the Church.Are you a Catholic?

Literalist-Luke
Oct 15th 2008, 02:18 AM
Don't you think if it meant Jesus, it would just say so? Obviously the woman is not Mary and the child is not Christ. The "Great Wonder in Heaven" is apparently a message constructed in symbolism that combines elements of the stories of Joseph, Israel, Jesus and the Church, all in one picture. So, you can not just pick out one and say, "it is this one". There is a bigger picture here that spans all of history, about the war of Satan against God's chosen.
[LEFT]11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.

OK, let's cut to the chase. I have stated exactly who I think the woman is (Israel) and given specific reasons why. Maybe I'm reading your posts too fast, but it appears to me that you're saying something along the lines of "we can't really know who this woman is" (which is horse hockey). Please specify who the woman is and your objective, empirical reasons for reaching that conclusion. Then we can talk.

Ethnikos
Oct 15th 2008, 02:52 AM
Please specify who the woman is and your objective, empirical reasons for reaching that conclusion.
It is not a person but a vision. The symbols are not a particular thing, but a combination of events. My evidence is the Book of Revelation and this is how the whole book describes things. There is a style to the book and to take one symbol out of its context of being part of a larger lesson, and give it a particular meaning, in and of itself, goes against the style.

Maz
Oct 15th 2008, 02:56 AM
I'm a fairly new person to reading the bible and here recently I've spent some time reading through this board and trying to get a feel for other Christians. I usually read threads that pertain to the rapture. It seems like the rapture is the only thing that I really get excited about when reading or talking about the end times. I'm not sure which side to follow with and starting to think that people picking sides is a ploy of the devil to force us apart and forget the two greatest commands that Jesus told us about while here on this earth.

However, I know that discussion with opposing viewpoints can actually shed light on the facts and on opinions. So, I'm going to go against my opinion of discussing/arguing about the rapture because I would like to get some different point of views.

So, on to the point of my thread. I saw in another post on this forum about 2 Thessalonians 2. Such an interesting chapter that I had never connected with the end times, but after reading it, it appears to be very significant to the discussions. Yet, this is the first I've seen of this mention.

I will quote this entire chapter here (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2%20Thessalonians%202%20;&version=50;51;31;9;49;) of the versions that I read on biblegateway.com.

My question and point for the discussion is verse 6 and 7. What is holding back the man of sin? What is causing our enemy to be held down until it has been taken away? Could it be the Church? The Holy Spirit? What is it?

From my reading, and my opinion, it appears this is talking about some form of rapture of the Church/Holy Spirit. Now, I feel that if people want an understanding of the bible, we are to pray for wisdom and the Spirit within us will give us the answer. I feel that when I read this this morning, it was explained that this is the rapture and the only way that the end will come is by the Church/Holy Spirit being removed from the earth.

Thoughts?
Everybody is trying to figure out the rapture thing. In my simple faith I respond to a pre trib rapture. Because the word says 1Th 5:9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, 1Th 5:10 Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him. 1Th 5:11 Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.

The wrath we are not appointed to is God's wrath. Seeing as the tribulation is God's wrath upon earth and men of the world it seems logical to expect to be delivered from that place and time. It further says...Mar 13:20 And except that the Lord had shortened those days, no flesh should be saved: but for the elect's sake, whom he hath chosen, he hath shortened the days. But who are the "elect" in question? Jesus came to the Jews...He was referring to the Jews...for the nation of Israel must needs go into the tribulation..Jesus never preached to a gentile to my knowledge..He revealed the mysteries of the faith for Paul to promulgate ...Israel they rejected His first advent. The days are shortened for their sakes...

The thing is the rapture can be discussed from every angle and that is only my angle.

wesand24
Oct 15th 2008, 04:00 AM
Israel is often depicted as a women in the Bible (Ex. Hosea) God is here talking about His protection of Israel (Ex.-Exodus 19:4) Christ the male Child descended from Hebrew roots (Lineage of David, tribe of Judah) thus the woman interpretted as Israel.