2 Thessalonians 2:2

Dear Friends,

I’m reading a passage from Arethas (Fragm. in Epist. II ad Thess, 661.15): “SUNUPAKOUETAI TAUTA TOIS PROKEIMENOIS· MHDEIS hUMAS EXAPA THSHi hOTI ENESTHKEN hH hHMERA PRIN TAUTA GENHTAI TOTE THN APISTIAN TWN ANQRWPWN hO DIABOLOS EISHGEN”

I wanted to compare it with 2Thes 2,2: “hWS hOTI ENESTHKEN hH hHMERA TOU CRISTOU”

Is ENESTHKEN in both cases a proleptic Perfect ? That means the events are still future.

My other question is the exact meaning of “SUNUPAKOUETAI TAUTA TOIS PROKEIMENOIS” – I can’t handle the semantics and the syntax.

Thank you !

Peter, Germany

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65 thoughts on “2 Thessalonians 2:2

  1. Carl Conrad says:

    Isn’t this simply, in the case of 2 Thess 2:2 a proposition that is being set forth by others (that “the day of Christ is here now”) and that Paul disputes? And in the case of the Arethas, it’s a direct citation of the passage from 2 Thess. The enclosing hOTI should make it clear that this is a citation, I think.

    I think this is simply saying, “This (TAUTA) is consistent with/in accordance with/implicit in (SUNUPAKOUETAI) what has been set forth previously (TOIS PROKEIMENOIS — PROKEIMAI serving as the perfect passive for PROTIQHMI).

    Carl W. Conrad Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

  2. "Peter Streitenberger" says:

    Dear Carl, dear Friends,

    thank you so much for your help, Carl ! That brings me a step in the right direction in understanding this phrase.

    I wrote: That point was my main interest in comparing Arethas and Paul. I found another parallel that brought me to the idea of a prolepic usage of ENESTHKEN at Arethas and Paul (in 2Thes 2,2): Cyrillus wrote (Comm. in XII Prop. min., 1.188.16): “ENESTHKEN hH THS ANTAPODOSEWS hHMERA”. I think the context makes it clear that hHMERA is still future here, as Cyrillus writes (a sentence above): “EGGUS hH DIKH”.

    By the way: Arethas quotes 2Thes 2,3 before he adds the passage I mentioned. “MH TIS hUMAS EXAPATHSHi KATA MHDENA TROPON. hOTI EAN MH ELQHi hH APOSTASIA PRWTON, KAI APOKALUFQHi hO ANQRWPOS THS hAMARTIAS, hO hUIOS THS APWLEIAS.” Maybe this context can give a hint.

    That’s why I’ll think the following translations make sense: – that the day of the Lord is just at hand (ASV) – as if the day of the Lord were at hand (DRA) – as though the day of Christ were at hand (GNV) – as though the daye of Christe were at hande (PNT) – as though the daye of Christ were at honde (TNT) – as that the day of Christ is at hand (WEB)

    So I’m not absolutly sure the rendering “the day of Christ is here now” is right here.

    Thank you for further help ! Yours Peter, Germany

  3. George F Somsel says:

    I would tend to the view that in Re 1.3 that is precisely what is intended.

    Μακάριος ὁ ἀναγινώσκων καὶ οἱ ἀκούοντες τοὺς λόγους τῆς προφητείας καὶ τηροῦντες τὰ ἐν αὐτῇ γεγραμμένα, ὁ γὰρ καιρὸς ἐγγύς.

    MAKARIOS hO ANAGINWSKW KAI hOI AKOUONTES TOUS LOGOUS THS PROFHTEIAS KAI THROUNTES TA EN AUTHi GEGRAMMENA, hO GAR KAIROS EGGUS.

     george gfsomsel

    … search for truth, hear truth, learn truth, love truth, speak the truth, hold the truth, defend the truth till death.

    – Jan Hus

  4. Carl Conrad says:

    Isn’t this simply, in the case of 2 Thess 2:2 a proposition that is being set forth by others (that “the day of Christ is here now”) and that Paul disputes? And in the case of the Arethas, it’s a direct citation of the passage from 2 Thess. The enclosing hOTI should make it clear that this is a citation, I think.

    I think this is simply saying, “This (TAUTA) is consistent with/in accordance with/implicit in (SUNUPAKOUETAI) what has been set forth previously (TOIS PROKEIMENOIS — PROKEIMAI serving as the perfect passive for PROTIQHMI).

    Carl W. Conrad Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

  5. "Peter Streitenberger" says:

    Dear Carl, dear Friends,

    thank you so much for your help, Carl ! That brings me a step in the right direction in understanding this phrase.

    I wrote: That point was my main interest in comparing Arethas and Paul. I found another parallel that brought me to the idea of a prolepic usage of ENESTHKEN at Arethas and Paul (in 2Thes 2,2): Cyrillus wrote (Comm. in XII Prop. min., 1.188.16): “ENESTHKEN hH THS ANTAPODOSEWS hHMERA”. I think the context makes it clear that hHMERA is still future here, as Cyrillus writes (a sentence above): “EGGUS hH DIKH”.

    By the way: Arethas quotes 2Thes 2,3 before he adds the passage I mentioned. “MH TIS hUMAS EXAPATHSHi KATA MHDENA TROPON. hOTI EAN MH ELQHi hH APOSTASIA PRWTON, KAI APOKALUFQHi hO ANQRWPOS THS hAMARTIAS, hO hUIOS THS APWLEIAS.” Maybe this context can give a hint.

    That’s why I’ll think the following translations make sense: – that the day of the Lord is just at hand (ASV) – as if the day of the Lord were at hand (DRA) – as though the day of Christ were at hand (GNV) – as though the daye of Christe were at hande (PNT) – as though the daye of Christ were at honde (TNT) – as that the day of Christ is at hand (WEB)

    So I’m not absolutly sure the rendering “the day of Christ is here now” is right here.

    Thank you for further help ! Yours Peter, Germany

  6. George F Somsel says:

    I would tend to the view that in Re 1.3 that is precisely what is intended.

    Μακάριος ὁ ἀναγινώσκων καὶ οἱ ἀκούοντες τοὺς λόγους τῆς προφητείας καὶ τηροῦντες τὰ ἐν αὐτῇ γεγραμμένα, ὁ γὰρ καιρὸς ἐγγύς.

    MAKARIOS hO ANAGINWSKW KAI hOI AKOUONTES TOUS LOGOUS THS PROFHTEIAS KAI THROUNTES TA EN AUTHi GEGRAMMENA, hO GAR KAIROS EGGUS.

     george gfsomsel

    … search for truth, hear truth, learn truth, love truth, speak the truth, hold the truth, defend the truth till death.

    – Jan Hus

  7. Troy Day says:

    Link Hudson I dont know if your quoted extended till 2:22 but here is another all time favorite one of Ricky Grimsley The text as read in the original following the CHURCH in 2Thes clearly shows the CHURCH as the restrainer No other super wonder person is mentioned – certainly not Michael, Jackie, Perry or Terry How can ANYone read this text the way it flows in 2 Thes 2 and even begin to suggest that anyone else BUT the church is the Restrainer mentioned and meant by PAUL?

  8. Link Hudson says:

    Troy, Do you realize how weak that argument is. Why are the pre-trib arguments so weak? Paul says you now who he is who restrains him. So you read your pre-trib theory– which you can’t show from any passage of scripture– into the text, and then treat that as proof. This is circular reasoning.

    Pre-tribbers claim to believe in literal interpretation, but the theory is based on making allegorical interpretations of apocalyptic literature…or just reading the theory into a passage where there is no evidence for it. Other arguments are weak like arguing for a pre-trib rapture from ‘not appointed unto wrath’. God demonstrated HIs ability to pour out His judgments on those who needed them and to protect his people in Egypt, and why would the tribulational saints be ‘appointed unto wrath’ if we aren’t? The only attempt at exegesis I can recall regarding the rapture that isn’t allegorical is to interpret the apostasia as the rapture, which seems a rather bizaar interpretation that again, begs the question.

    Can we deal with what Paul does clearly state in the passages in question. Paul speaks of the ‘revelation’ of Jesus from heaven in his epistles. He speaks of the ‘coming’ of Christ also. In II Thessalonians 1, he speaks of the ‘revelation’ of Christ. Chapter 2 continues the dialogue and refers to Jesus ‘coming.’

    Do believe these two are the same thing?

    In I Corinthians 15, the dead are made alive ‘at his coming.’ This chapter is about the resurrection. Paul addresses those who argue that there is no resurrection of the dead, argues that if that were the case Christ is not risen, and ye are dead in your sins. But Christ is risen. He is the firstfruits, the dead will rise, and he goes into detail on the transformation of the bodies of those who do not die.

    The resurrection occurs at Christ’s coming in I Corinthians 15. In II Thessalonians 1, when Jesus comes, the church is here and receives rest at His coming. But at His coming, Jesus executes vengence on them that believe not. It does not say He lets them have some peace with the beast for a little while.

    Why doesn’t it say that if the pre-trib rapture verse is true?

  9. Troy Day says:

    So which argument is weak?
    but which argument is weak – why instead of calling the argument weak you dismantle it like I did yours from 2 Thes 1 without just calling it weak without presenting any support of Scripture against it
    As a matter of fact as I red your last 40 responses all they say is

    this argument is weak
    this argument is too long
    this argument is this or that
    but in fact you present no argument or counter argument at all 🙂
    It is a very funny passive aggressive way of avoidance especially when one figures out you lack a full eschatological plan and kind of cherry pick verses out of context which is #sad actually

    1. Link Hudson says:

      Troy Day are you being disingenuous?

      The passage you referred to does not say who the restrainer is. It does not say it is the church and a sizeable number of pretribbers say the restrainer is the Holy Spirit.

      The fact that youcan read a pretrib into a passage that does not offer any evidence for it is weak. Btw if a link cobtains relavent info could you cut and paste relevant and if necessary, explain the relevance.

    2. Troy Day says:

      in all honesty I have never heard Link Hudson agree or state that the restrainer is anyone else but the antiChrist which is the classical baptist interpretation I dont think he will agree to it being Michael or anyone else I know I dont The SHE argument is easily refuted – no where the church is called SHE not but it is called body of christ Your interpretation of SHE seems to claim Christ the male head has church female body – very transgender of you Ricky Grimsley What’s next Holy Ghost is not a person? 🙂

    3. Link Hudson says:

      I’m not sure about that. But I don’t see a compulsion to have to name the restrainer as justification for throwing away the plain sense of the text in chapters 1 and 2 and eisegeting pretrib into the passage.

      Generally Pentecostal pretribbers I have encountered say the Holy Spirit is the restrainer.

    4. Troy Day says:

      Link Hudson your last sentence is falls. It seems the pentecostals you have encountered were just baptists. No real Pentecostal believe the Holy Spirit stops operating at any time, age or dispensation. If the Holy Ghost be taken no one cannot be saved under the Tribulation Even Ricky Grimsley dont believe that The explain around way is Michael, which I think is quite wacky but some people believe that Oh Well

    5. Link Hudson says:

      Why would Paul say that the day of Christ (associated with our gathering to Christ in the passage) would not come until the man of sin had been revealed if the church had to be gathered to Christ before the man of sin had to be revealed?

      Let’s look at it in II Thessalonians 2
      1 Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him, we ask you, brothers, 2 not to be quickly shaken in mind or alarmed, either by a spirit or a spoken word, or a letter seeming to be from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come. (ESV)

      Why would anyone NOT interpret the ‘day of the Lord’ here to refer to the coming of the Lord in verse 1 unless he had been pre-programmed with pre-trib circular logic? Why isn’t this the say ‘day’ of chapter 1? A day in which the church is here when Jesus gets back.

      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, 4 who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God. {ESV}

      What day will not happen unless the apostasy first occurs? What day will not happen unless the man of lawlessness is revealed? The day described in verses 1-2 in the same chapter. Jesus already predicted the love of many waxing cold and the rise of false prophets as occurring BEFORE the coming of the Son of Man in Matthew 24.

      Suppose you lived before pre-trib was basically invented and really knew the passages of scripture here. Is there any way someone could convince you of a pre-trib scenario based on what Paul wrote here? Isn’t the logic so convoluted? Where is the justification in Christian for Jesus sort-of coming back and then going back up?

      Paul uses ‘His coming’ to describe the event when the ‘dead are made alive.’ The rapture occurs right after the dead in Christ rise in I Thessalonians.

  10. Troy Day says:

    Link Hudson Rico Hero Ricky Grimsley again pls make note of the Greek Paul uses and its English translation proper

    The departure in 2Thes is the the Greek noun, apostasia It is used only twice in the New Testament in 2 THESSALONIANS 2:3 and in Acts 21:21 where it states that an accusation was made against Paul that he was “teaching all the Jews who are among the Gentiles to forsake [apostasia lit. to depart from] Moses.”

    The word is used in verb form a total of 15 times in the New Testament, and only three of these have anything to do with a departure from the faith (Luke 8:13, 1 Timothy 4:1, andHebrews 3:12). In other settings, the word is used for departing from inquity (2 Timothy 2:19), departing from ungodly men (1 Timothy 6:5), departing from the temple (Luke 2:27), departing from the body (2 Corinthians 12:8), and departing from persons (Acts 12:10 andLuke 4:13).

    This insight about the use and meaning of the word was certainly compelling, but the argument most convicting comes the first seven English translations of the Bible rendered the noun, apostasia, as either “departure” or “departing.” They were as follows:
    1. The Wycliffe Bible (1384)
    2. The Tyndale Bible (1526)
    3. The Coverdale Bible (1535)
    4. The Cranmer Bible (1539)
    5. The Great Bible (1540)
    6. The Beeches Bible (1576)
    7. The Geneva Bible (1608)
    The Bible used by the Western world from 400 AD to the 1500s — Jerome’s Latin translation known as “The Vulgate” — rendered apostasia with the Latin word, discessio, which means “departure.”

    The first translation of the word to mean apostasy in an English Bible did not occur until 1611 when the King James Version was issued. So, why did the King James translators introduce a completely new rendering of the word as “falling away”? The best guess is that they were taking a stab at the false teachings of Catholicism.
    Also quite important for us is the fact that Paul used a definite article with the word apostasia. Since the Greek language does not need an article to make the noun definite, it becomes clear that with the usage of the article, reference is being made to something in particular. In 2 Thessalonians 2:3 the word apostasia is prefaced by the definite article which means that Paul is pointing to
    a particular type of departure clearly known to the Thessalonian church.

    In light of this grammatical point, it is observed that the use of the definite article would support the notion that Paul spoke of a clear, discernable notion. And that notion he had already identified in verse 1 when he stated that he was writing about “our gathering together to Him [Jesus].
    This interpretation also corresponds to the point that Paul makes in verses 6 and 7 where he states that the man of lawlessness will not come until what “restrains” him “is taken out of the way.”

    1. Troy Day says:

      I showed you 7 already – pls read before you post

      1. The Wycliffe Bible (1384)
      2. The Tyndale Bible (1526)
      3. The Coverdale Bible (1535)
      4. The Cranmer Bible (1539)
      5. The Great Bible (1540)
      6. The Beeches Bible (1576)
      7. The Geneva Bible (1608)

    2. Link Hudson says:

      Troy Day how the word was translated in previous English translations yas little or nothing to do with what it means unless we think those translations were inspired. Ice used two names for the same teanslation and double counted when he made that argument. I don’t know of any Tyndale onlyists.

    3. Link Hudson says:

      When used as a verb isn’t it generally clear whete one departs from and where too? The use of the definite article fits well with the ‘apostasy’ understanding of it.

      From other passages, we know that in the end the love of many will growcold. We know that Paul predicted a departing from the faith following doctrines of demons.

      In terms of the plain sense of the text the gathering unto Christ is likely a reference to the rapture. It makes sense to understand the day of Christ to refer to the return of Christ and yhe rapture. If ‘the departing’ must occur before the rapture, then it cannot be the rapture.

      In Matthew 24 the love of many wax cold and the tribulation occur before the sign of the Son of Man coming and the gathering of the elect. Notice the clouds in this passage and in the I Thess. rapture passage.

      There is no pretrib rapture event described. Near the end of the book, we see Jesus on a white horse. The we read about the “first resurrection”. Paul teaches the resurrection of the dead in Christ immediately preceded the rapture.

      I cannot find any passage that shows the rapture occurring before the tribulation. If there is, please show me. There needs to be some kind of justification, Biblicallt, for retranslatingnthe text of II Thess.2. If you cannot show pretrib in any other passage that lays out the chronology (without just assumming it) then why argue for this interprtation?

    4. Troy Day says:

      1. The Wycliffe Bible (1384)
      2. The Tyndale Bible (1526)
      3. The Coverdale Bible (1535)
      4. The Cranmer Bible (1539)
      5. The Great Bible (1540)
      6. The Beeches Bible (1576)
      7. The Geneva Bible (1608)
      all give us their plain sense of interpretation
      Are you smarter than
      1. The Wycliffe Bible (1384)
      2. The Tyndale Bible (1526)
      3. The Coverdale Bible (1535)
      4. The Cranmer Bible (1539)
      5. The Great Bible (1540)
      6. The Beeches Bible (1576)
      7. The Geneva Bible (1608)
      ??? I dont think so

    5. Link Hudson says:

      Troy Day I am not saying ‘departing’ is a bad translation. Use of that word in translation does not change the meaning of the passage.

      It is just silly to argue what a first century Greek passage means based on how it was translated over 1000 years later. Don’t you see the problem with the logic?

      You know, since the first century was BEFORE the 14th century.

    6. Troy Day says:

      So now the English of Wycliffe, Tyndale and Coverdale are silly and not good enough for you 🙂 Got it! Like I told you some times ago if you dont accept the Bible there’s nothing you can be told anymore

      What about Clement of Rome and the rest of the church fathers who wrote about pe-trib rapture Would you say they were wrong too so you can make yourself right?

      Clement of Rome 68 or 97 AD
      In Clement’s Epistles to the Corinthians: “Let us take (for instance) Enoch…Noah…and the Lord saved by him the animals which, with one accord, entered into the ark. On account of his hospitality and godliness, Lot was saved out of Sodore when all the country round was punished by means of fire and brimstone, the Lord thus making it manifest that He does not forsake those that hope in Him.”

      Ephraem the Syrian (4th century AD) of the Byzantine Church wrote about the Lord’s return as being imminent in his sermon “On the Last Times, the Antichrist, and the End of the World.” He stated, “All saints and elect of God are gathered, prior to the tribulation that is to come, and are taken to the Lord lest they see the confusion that is to overwhelm the world because of our sins.” Pseudo-Ephraem claims that his sermon was written by Ephraem of Nisibis (306 A.D.—373 A.D), considered to be the greatest figure in the history of the Syrian church.”

      The Shepherd of Hermas (95-150)
      “You have escaped from the great tribulation on account of your faith, and because you did not doubt in the presence of such a beast. Go, therefore, and tell the elect of the Lord His mighty deeds, and say to them that this beast is a type of the great tribulation that is coming. If then ye prepare yourselves, and repent with all your heart, and turn to the Lord, it will be possible for you to escape it, if your heart be pure and spotless, and ye spend the rest of the days of your life serving the Lord blamelessly.”

      Victorinus (Well known by 270 and died in 303 A.D.)
      His commentary notes in Revelation 6:14 indicate a pretrib reference: “‘And the heaven withdrew as a scroll that is rolled up.’ For the heaven to be rolled away, that is, that the Church shall be taken away. ‘And every mountain and the islands removed from their places’ intimate that in the last persecution all men departed from their places; that is, that the good will be removed, seeking to avoid persecution.”

      http://www.pentecostaltheology.com/the-ancient-church-fathers-believed-in-pre-trib-rapture/

    7. Link Hudson says:

      Troy Day Troy Day, no it is silly to say a translation from 1300 proves what a first century Greek text means. It is dishonest for you to say I called Tyndale, etc. silly. You have a doctorate. Your arguments should make more sense than that. If you write something foolish, we can see it. Do you consider the posters here to be idiots?

      Those quotes you gave– Hermas’ comment is not pretrib. If the church is in the presence of the beast, that is not pre-trib. Victorinus–many pretribbers also believe in the destruction of the earth to be replaced with the new heaven and the new earth at the end of the millenium. There is not enough context there to argue for pretrib. The only one that fits with pre-trib is Ephraem the Syrian. With all the people who have lived and wrote, someone is bound to get a little confused with the order in a passage like Matthew 24, a writer or scribe or someone.

      The real issue is what the Bible teaches. I have given you plenty of scriptures that present a problem for pre-trib.

      Jesus in Matthew 24 puts the sign of the coming of the Son of Man and the gathering of the elect AFTER the tribulation of those days.Paul refers to the coming of Christ and our gathering until him also in II Thessalonians 2:1. Do you care to comment on that?

      I know pre-tribbers have some ways of trying to deal with the difficulties. You linked to a page that contained several arguments, including trying to stretch the parousia out to a long period of time. I assume that is what you are referring to, since you did not say which aspect of the page you believed in.

      My question is, what is the motivation for having to make these passages work with pre-trib? It is a plain sense reading to say the ‘departing’ or ‘apostasy’ occurs after the coming of Christ and our gathering unto him in II Thessalonians 2. What is the motivation for having to interpret the passage different from the plain sense of it? Why must we interpret difficult passages for pre-trib around pre-trib in the first place?

      My point is, there are plenty of verses, when taken in a plain sense reading together, indicate that the saints are resurrected at or immediately after the coming of Christ. Where are the scriptures that lay out a pre-trib timeline? Where is the scripture that teaches pretrib that serves as the justification for working so hard to make scriptures fit with pre-trib.

    1. Troy Day says:

      you and Ricky Grimsley should learn how to mark yourself safe after a storm Maybe FB should offer you a special option to mark yourself safe after the Rapture Hey The Babylon Bee how about an article on marking yourself safe after the Rapture? I know I will not need to use it How about you Rico Hero Gary Micheal Epping A.J. Bible ???

    2. Troy Day I know. Some say the restrainer is Michael, others say it is the church or the Holy Spirit. But maybe the restrainer is an event! Who exactly is the restrainer and what is being restrained? Verse 1 seems to say that what is being restrained is ‘the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him.’ And then verse 3 seems to say that the restrainer is a ‘falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed.” Or maybe I am being too literal.

    3. Troy Day says:

      No argument there but I do see the Greek in 2:2 anticipating a person to be a restrainer or in the case of the Church an institution perhaps? Either way the 2 events are in a need for a doer in order to get them done #GetErDoneLord

    4. Rico Hero says:

      The “lawlessness is already at work” (2 Thess 2:7 NKJV) in Paul’s time were the apostate church leaders preaching ” as if from us, as though the day of [a]Christ had come.(v2). In this case , it was Paul restraining the lawlessness from these apostates from spreading. The true church is always the one restraining lawlessness. Imagine if the church is taken out of the way! Lawlessness will run riot. To the point when the anti christ sets up the abomination of desolation and claims to be God.

    5. Troy Day Do you realize that if the ‘the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him’ is being restrained by the revelation of the ‘man of sin,’ then the rapture can not happen until after the start of the Great Tribulation. Food for thought.

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