Life in Truth or Death in Deception?
2 Thessalonians 2:9-15
Let Gratitude for Life Propel You to Persevere in Truth
Published February 6th, 2020; Updated February 6th, 2020
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Main Point Summary
Main Point Summary
Persevere forward and hold truth close to the mind and heart, because the only alternative to your election is deception.
2 Thessalonians 2:9-15
The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan
The coming of the anti-Christ will be a work of Satan,
r with all power and false signs and wonders,
signified by miracles that are rooted in lies,
and with all wicked deception for s those who are perishing,
along with deception itself-- specifically designated for those who have not been born of imperishable seed,
because they refused to love the truth
and they were not born of imperishable seed because they refused to love the truth of Christ Himself from the heart
and so be saved.
and be saved as a result of that love.
Therefore t God sends them a strong delusion,
So, because the unregenerate refused to love what is true, God causes them to stray further into their self-deception,
so that they may believe u what is false,
and God sends them further into self-deception to ensure that they put their faith in a lie,
in order that all may be condemned
and God does all of this so that He may judge the unrighteous
v who did not believe the truth
who did not have faith in Christ
but w had pleasure in unrighteousness.
but instead approved and enjoyed everything aside from Him.
But x we ought always to give thanks to God for you, y brothers beloved by the Lord,
On the other hand, we must always graciously thank our good, good Father for all of you brothers and sisters who have been first loved of Him,
because God chose you z as the firstfruits 1 a to be saved,
having this gratitude because it is God who chose you from the beginning of time to be saved from our utterly hopeless self-deception,
b through sanctification by the Spirit
granting us this salvation by means of two things: 1. the Spirit's work and indwelling within us,
and belief in the truth.
and 2. our belief in what is objectively true.
To this he called you
This is the salvation that God has called you to
through c our gospel,
by means of the gospel of truth,
a so that you may obtain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
and He ultimately called you so that you would fulfill our purpose of lifting the Lord Jesus high in eternal praise.
So then, brothers, d stand firm
Therefore, because God has called us to life through truth and not death through deception, let the children of God do two things: 1. Persevere forward in the way you are heading,
and hold to e the traditions
and 2. hold truth close to the mind and heart,
that you were taught by us,
that is, the truth that we ourselves taught you,
either f by our spoken word or by f our letter.
either through personal preaching and teaching or through our letters.
You are not deceived, so cling (verb in Greek means "to use strength, to retain or obtain) to truth. The wonderful gift of freedom allows us to cling to truth and not deception-- praise God He doesn't let us falter in deception. Truth is the most precious gift there is, so cling to it.
We love because He first loved us.
God is seeking those who worship Him in Spirit and in truth (John 4:24).
God's choosing you happens through two means: sanctification and belief. Sanctification happens through the Spirit, and belief must be according to truth. These words shine forth in Jesus' teaching in John 6. For, it is there that we find Jesus tell us that, "It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life" (John 6:63). So, the Spirit is the One Who takes us by the hand through salvation (sanctification), but this only happens through the Word of God, which is truth (John 17:17). And earlier in John 6, Jesus said, "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him... It is written in the Prophets, 'And they will all be taught by God' Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me," (John 6:44-45). The picture being presented is one of divine education, by which our minds are renewed day by day through the words of God. The effectual education of the Father (marked by saturation in Truth and a Spirit-provided willingness to learn, unlearn, and relearn) saves our souls. For, knowing God is eternal life itself (John 17:3).
Meditations: Head How should I think differently about God/myself/others because of this? Well, there is a lot for me to think about myself in this. I know that my salvation is directly connected to my perseverance in the Truth of God's Words. Therefore, my Bible study is not definitely not just a "Christian activity," but it is the very power by which I "bear fruits in keeping with repentance." And I must keep with repentance. Therefore, I must keep my thinking saturated in the Words of God as my mind is renewed day by day. As for our Father, my goodness, what a salvation we have been given in this Word. What Truths we have the privilege to hold in our heads, hearts, and hands. Which, in turn makes me jealous for the nations to know these truths. God's Word is His means of grace to the world, mostly clearly demonstrated through the life and ministry of Jesus, making the gospel message the power unto salvation for the nations. It is God's Words that He desires the nations to hear. What doctrines are taught in this passage? Certainly election, once more. I don't know how much clearer it can get than, "God chose you... to be saved," and yet people will still dance around this verse. God grant us the same patience You had with us in our gradual embrace of Truth. And allow us to seek the joy that comes with thanksgiving at the salvation of a soul. For it is truly a miracle. Also, it's wonderful that Paul goes into the "how" of election here as well, for this is certainly, "working out your salvation with fear and trembling." For, it literally cannot happen apart from dependence on God's Words and works. Heart How should I feel differently about God/myself/etc. because of this passage of Scripture? My heart is addressed directly in this passage, and Jesus Himself is the Surgeon, working to both comfort my heart and establish it them through His Word and my obedience to that Word. Therefore, let me read His Word as a love letter, carefully pouring over the language therein, seeing how my Savior has given Himself for me, and how He seeks me in every page. Also, what pride shall I take in my salvation? It is God's choice. I did not choose to be saved. I couldn't choose to be saved. Praise God that He saved me, despite my countless wanderings... Father, grant me a deeper love for you through a deeper grasp of this amazing grace. What emotions are expressed in this passage? I would say love. The love of God to us. Such is the language of comforting the heart (which both Jesus and the Father have a part in accomplishing). We may be afflicted by the world, but the Word is after our eternal comfort. Therefore, let us look to the Word for our comfort. What other substantial comforts does God provide? Do I read the Word like I believe it is a primary source of comfort? What emotions does this passage exhort me to feel? It certainly prompts affections for Christ, of which I could never have enough of... It is my continual prayer that God would make me love Him more.
Disclaimer: The opinions and conclusions expressed on this page are those of the author and may or may not accord with the positions of Biblearc or Bethlehem College & Seminary.