About Jesus    Steve Sweetman

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Time Line To The End

Eschatology is a big subject that few of us understand. I don’t claim to have great understanding about the subject concerning the end of this age and the return of Jesus. What I can do is to simply point out some Scriptures that needs no or little interpretation. This is what I will do in this article. From Paul’s 2 letters to the Thessalonians I will state what he says. He does not tell us the whole story, but he does say certain things about the end of this age. Here they are.

Before Jesus comes back, certain things will happen. – 2 Thess. 2:1

The rebellion will occur (an apparent special time of rebellion) – 2 Thess. 2:3

The rebellion is led by the lawless man – 2Thess. 2:3

The lawless man will oppose God and exalt himself over everything that is called God. – 2 Thess.2:4 What he does will be in accordance with the work of satan. He will perform many signs and wonders that will deceive those who are perishing. He will promote every sort of evil imaginable. – 2 Thess. 2:9-10

Yet before the lawless man appears in the world, the secret power of lawlessness is already at work. That is to say, sin and satan are presently working in the lives of men and women today. – 2 Thess. 2:7

While this secret power of lawlessness is at work, and before the man of lawlessness appears in the world, some someone is holding these evil powers back from fully exhibiting their strength and power.  2 Thess. 2:6-7

At some point the one holding back the lawless man and the power of lawlessness will be taken out of their way, permitting the lawless man to appear in the world to do what he wants to do, and that is to deceive.
– 2Thess. 2:7

God Himself will send a powerful delusion to those who are perishing, so that they will believe the lie of the lawless man. That is to say, God helps those who are perishing to give themselves over to the lawless man and the work of satan, resulting in their condemnation.
– 2 Thess. 2:11

At some point beyond this, Jesus will return. His return will be a complete surprise to those who are perishing. It will be as a thief in the night. – 1 Thess.5:2 This should not be a surprise to the believer who should be watching and praying for this day as Jesus said. – 1 Thess. 5:4, Mark 13:35-36

When Jesus returns to earth, it will be with a loud command, with the voice of the arch angel, and with a trumpet call. The dead in Christ will rise first to meet Jesus and the angels with Him. – 1 Thess. 4:15-16, 1 Thess. 4:14, 2 Thess. 1:7.

Then those who are alive in Christ will rise to meet Jesus, the angels, and previously dead saints in the air. – 1 Thess. 4:17

Jesus will then return to earth in blazing fire with His powerful angels, and the saints.
- 2 Thess. 1:7

At that time Jesus will punish those who do not know God and who do not obey the truth of the gospel with an everlasting destruction, that is, they will be continually in the process of destruction yet at the same time never finally destroyed. – 2 Thess. 1:8

Also, at this time, Jesus will destroy the lawless man by His very appearance and the breathe, or spirit of His mouth. – 2Thess. 2:8

At that day, when Jesus returns, and begins the punishment of those who are perishing, the destruction of the lawless man and satan, Jesus will be glorified in His people and marveled at by all those who have trusted in Him for their very lives. – 2 Thess. 1:10

This is the time line of events at the end of the age as described by Paul in his first and second letter to the Thessalonians. This is a clear time line that needs no interpretation. Paul does not speak symbolically as you see in the book of Revelation. Therefore what he says is simply factual. I have only repeated to you the facts as Paul has set them forth.

By Paul’s own admission there is more to the story than this. (2 Thess. 2:5) He spoke to the Thessalonians in person about all of these things. He only reminded them of a few things in his 2 letters. O how I wish he would have elaborated more in his letters.


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