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1: Our gathering together to him - In the clouds.
2: Be not shaken in mind - In judgment. Or terrified - As
those easily are who are immoderately fond of knowing future
things. Neither by any pretended revelation from the Spirit,
nor by pretence of any word spoken by me.
3: Unless the falling away - From the pure faith of the
gospel, come first. This began even in the apostolic age.
But the man of sin, the son of perdition - Eminently so called,
is not come yet. However, in many respects, the Pope has an
indisputable claim to those titles. He is, in an emphatical
sense, the man of sin, as he increases all manner of sin above
measure. And he is, too, properly styled, the son of perdition,
as he has caused the death of numberless multitudes, both of his
opposers and followers, destroyed innumerable souls, and will
himself perish everlastingly. He it is that opposeth himself
to the emperor, once his rightful sovereign; and that exalteth
himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped
- Commanding angels, and putting kings under his feet, both of
whom are called gods in scripture; claiming the highest power,
the highest honour; suffering himself, not once only, to be
styled God or vice - god. Indeed no less is implied in his
ordinary title, "Most Holy Lord," or, "Most Holy Father."
So that he sitteth - Enthroned. In the temple of God - Mentioned(Re 11:1).
Declaring himself that he is God - Claiming the prerogatives which
belong to God alone.
6: And now ye know - By what I told you when I was with
you. That which restraineth - The power of the Roman emperors.
When this is taken away, the wicked one will be revealed.
In his time - His appointed season, and not before.
7: He will surely be revealed; for the mystery - The
deep, secret power of iniquity, just opposite to the power
of godliness, already worketh. It began with the love of
honour, and the desire of power; and is completed in the
entire subversion of the gospel of Christ. This mystery of
iniquity is not wholly confined to the Romish church, but
extends itself to others also. It seems to consist of,
The two last branches, together with idolatry and bloodshed,
are the direct consequences of the former; namely, the adding
to the word of God. Already worketh - In the church. Only he
that restraineth - That is, the potentate who successively has
Rome in his power. The emperors, heathen or Christian; the
kings, Goths or Lombards; the Carolingian or German emperors.
- Human inventions added to the written word.
- Mere outside performances put in the room of faith and love.
- Other mediators besides the man Christ Jesus.
8: And then - When every prince and power that restrains
is taken away. Will that wicked one - Emphatically so called,
be revealed. Whom the Lord will soon consume with the spirit
of his mouth - His immediate power. And destroy - With the very
first appearance of his glory.
10: Because they received not the love of the truth
- Therefore God suffered them to fall into that "strong
11: Therefore God shall send them - That is, judicially
permit to come upon them, strong delusion.
12: That they all may be condemned - That is, the
consequence of which will be, that they all will be
condemned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure
in unrighteousness - That is, who believed not the truth,
because they loved sin.
13: God hath from the beginning - Of your hearing the
gospel. Chosen you to salvation - Taken you out of the world,
and placed you in the way to glory.
14: To which - Faith and holiness. He hath called you by
our gospel - That which we preached, accompanied with the power
of his Spirit.
15: Hold - Without adding to, or diminishing from, the
traditions which ye have been taught - The truths which I
have delivered to you. Whether by word or by our epistle
- He preached before he wrote. And he had written concerning
this in his former epistle.