God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might
- 2 Thessalonians 2:11-12
Second Thessalonians for Skeptics
Although this epistle (1:1, 3:17) claims to have been written by Paul,
many scholars think it was a later forgery . If Paul did write it, though, he completely
changed his mind
(since writing 1 Thessalonians) about the timing of Christ's return. The day of the Lord is no longer at hand. In fact,
it's nowhere near. Many things must happen first: there will be a great "falling away," a "man of sin" will be revealed, and
Satan will show off his power by doing all kinds of signs and wonders. (2:2-9)
Every skeptic should know one passage from Second Thessalonians: 2:11-12. ("God shall send them strong delusion, that they should
believe a lie: That they all might be damned.")
Here are the highlights.
- "Jesus ... in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God ... who shall be punished with everlasting destruction."
- "Be not soon shaken in mind ... by letter as from us."
What letter is being referred to here? Is it 1 Thessalonians? If so, then should Christians not read it to avoid being "shaken in mind?"
- Jesus will "consume" the wicked "with the spirit of his mouth." 2:8
- Satan, not God, is all-powerful. 2:9
- "God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned." 2:11-12
- "God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation." 2:13
- Those who disagree with the views expressed in this epistle are to be shunned. 3:6, 14
- Those who will not or cannot work should starve to death. 3:10