When is the coming of the Lord to take place? Give us some relevant current day signs and what is the great falling away that will occur as described in 2Thess 2:3. "Let no one deceive you by any means; for [that Day will not come] unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition."
Paul’s first letter to Timothy 4:1 expressed some of the reasons for the apostasy. “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils.”
Pre-Tribulation saints will believe that the falling away will occur before the catching away of the Church. The bible also teaches a rapture at mid-Tribulation and just before the end of Tribulation, all of which allows Paul to write in first Thessalonians 3:13 that we will be blameless “at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.”
Many believe that the falling away is expected before the Church was no longer present. As saints we have many activities in heaven during the Tribulation period and “all His saints” were to accompany Jesus at the second coming back to earth.
Many use a rapture belief before Tribulation with the scripture in 1Thessalonians 5:9. “For God has not appointed us to incur His wrath — He did not select us to condemn us — but that we might obtain His salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, the Messiah.”
When is this apostasy and when is the falling away? Historically, the Bible illustrated a life cycle through which God saved his people and caused them to prosper. With an easy life style and salvation they slumbered into sin.
Prosperity in the great Kingdoms of David and Solomon brought a life of ease. Israel slumbered into sin until God punished them through the hand of a Babylonian King that we call Iraq, today. As we look at the great wealth and the life of ease in much of the world people see little need to concern themselves with God.
Who is the man of sin, the lawless one or the antichrist? One of the first descriptions of the anti-Christ is given in Daniel 7:21-25 when this lawless man comes to power to war. The anti-Christ is referred to as a beast with a horn.
Why reference him as a horn? Every animal that carries a rack of horns uses his head as a weapon. Thus, the horn in verse 20 rose to defeat three other horns of power and God recorded that as Daniel watched. The anti-Christ “horn” was waging war against God's holy people and was defeating them, until the Ancient One — the Most High — came and judged in favor of His holy people.”
In verse 25 the anti-Christ will defy the Most High and oppress the holy people of the Most High. He will try to change their sacred festivals and laws, and they will be placed under his control for three and one-half years. This same description is given in Revelation 13 as he controls the world during the last three and one-half years of Tribulation.
Who is this man of sin? He may be alive, today, but will not be revealed until tribulation begins. Second Thessalonians 2 states that the anti-Christ will cause a great rebellion. He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped.
He will set himself up in God's temple and proclaim himself to be God. The anti-Christ will show all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders with every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing.
In that day and that time God will send a powerful delusion to believe the lie and all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness. However, Romans 10:9 says, that if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”
Revelation 21:27 states that nothing impure will ever enter heaven, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life.
"The question for you today is quite specific: "Is your name in the Lamb's Book of Life?"
N. Brad Carter is a bible class teacher on WMER (1390 AM) Radio. Email him at email@example.com.