By Ed. F. Sanders
In 2 Thess 2:1-5 Paul teaches that the Second Coming and Rapture are not pretribulational and imminent (can happen at any moment) as is popularly taught, but occurs at the Day Of The Lord which is posttribulational!
Discussion:Paul's teaching about the Second Coming of Christ and the Rapture in 2 Th 2:1-5 is sometimes used by dispensationalists to support their imminent pretribulational Rapture theory. A close look at the passage reveals that it teaches the exact opposite.
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; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshiped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.
2:1 "Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming (1) of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together (2) unto him"
Comment: Paul states his subject: he is talking about the Coming of Christ (Greek –parousia) and our gathering together to Him – the Rapture.
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(3) is "at hand"(4)
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(5), the son of perdition….."
Comment: The Coming of Christ and the Rapture will not happen until the Antichrist is revealed, i.e. after the tribulation! (see Mt 24: 3- 22 where Jesus is teaching the same sequence of events that Paul taught!)
2:5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?
readers that he has told
them this before! Like us many of his 1st century readers are sometimes
Notes on the translation:
(1) Coming: παρουσία - parousia;
(2) Gathering together, (ἐπισυναγωγῆς, from: ἐπισυνάγω - episunago)
Of Christ: The
KJV and NKJV translate "Day Of Christ". The NKJV footnote on 2:2 says "NU-Text reads
Lord". The ESV, HCSB, NASB, NIV, and Amplified Bible translate "Day
of The Lord". JFB Commentary "the oldest NT manuscripts have Day Of The Lord". Even
pretribulational standard Scofield Reference Bible footnote on
verse references Isa 2:12 "the day of the LORD of hosts".
(4) At hand: eνίστημι - enistemi;
(5) Revealed: apokalupto - apocalupto;