10/18 2 Thessalonians 2:3

3 Let no one deceive you in any way. For that day will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction . . .

Some of the believers thought that the return of Christ had already taken place. This troubled them greatly, for that would mean they had not sufficiently trusted Jesus to be their Savior. They thought they might have not been born again.

Paul told them that whoever brought this idea to them was a deceiver. Several things had to take place before the return of the Lord. The first sign is the rebellion. It is a time when many of those who claim to believe will reject the truth of the gospel and plunge into a life of sin. Jesus said the love of many will grow cold (Matthew 24:12). While we are currently seeing evidence of this time in the Western world, the third world is experiencing an awakening.

The second sign is the revealing of the Antichrist. Paul calls him "the son of destruction" because of his lawlessness and his opposition to anything good. Paul goes on to explain that this will be a time when the Antichrist declares himself to be God and sits in the temple of God in Jerusalem. Paul assumes the believers will understand what is happening when it comes to pass (1 Thessalonians 5:4).

While it is true that believers expected Jesus' return to be soon, they knew certain signs that preceded His coming had not yet taken place. We should live expecting Jesus' return, but we should also be watching for these two signs that Paul taught would precede the Second Coming.

Consider: The important thing is to be ready by trusting Jesus fully each day and growing in the knowledge of His Word.