The Man Of Lawlessness [2]

Saturday 9th November 2019 Prayer Devotion

Scripture Reading:- 2 Thessalonians 2:3-10

Topic:- The Man Of Lawlessness [2]

Text:- 2 Thessalonians 2:10

C. This Man Of Lawlessness Seeks To Make Himself The Central Person Of Worship Beyond Any Other Eeligious Objects Or Personages In His Day:
1. Beyond that, the man of lawlessness exalts himself over the very worship of God Almighty. The lawless one’s efforts to receive worship result in his taking “his seat in the Temple of God.”  with most opting for the Jerusalem Temple as the “Temple of God.” See 1 Corinthians 3:16-17; 6:19; 2 Corinthians 6:16; Ephesians 2:21.
2. However, Paul’s reliance in this context on OT imagery and Jesus’ eschatological instruction implies that “Temple of God” refers to the Jerusalem Temple.
3. This connects well with the lawless one’s action in the Temple—“proclaiming himself to be God.” The man of lawlessness promotes himself in place of God Almighty as the central deity to be worshiped.
4. That still leaves open the question of whether a future physical temple will be in play or if this is prophetically symbolic of some other coming reality.
5. Paul here draws on OT Danielic imagery concerning a ruler opposed to God and his people. The Danielic background is particularly striking in comparison to the man of lawlessness. See Daniel 7:24-27; 8:23-26; 11:20-45.
6. In Daniel of a king who “shall exalt himself and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak astonishing things against the God of gods,” and “shall not pay attention to any other god, for he shall magnify himself above all,” it is this king who sets up the “abomination that makes desolate” in Jerusalem. Other Prophets also speak of rulers calling themselves god. Isaiah 14:12-15; Ezekiel 28:1-10; Daniel 11:31, 36-37.
7. The central interpretive debate in these two verses concerns the identity of this man of lawlessness. In response to this complex question, we should distinguish between what we can know with some certainty and what we can only suspect.

D. Two Key Historical Events Are Known:
1. First, Daniel’s Prophetic imagery points to Antiochus IV of Seleucia, who styled himself Epiphanes (“god manifest”), invaded Jerusalem, despoiled the Temple, commanded the burning of the Scriptures, forbade the covenant rite of circumcision, put to death many faithful Jews, and ultimately instituted pagan sacrifices in the Jerusalem Temple (167 BC).
Remarkably, a major Jewish literary source from the period appeals to Danielic language by labeling the pagan altar Antiochus set up in the Temple as the abomination of desolation (1 Macc. 1:54; 6:7).
The resulting Maccabean revolt eventually led to Jewish priests and kings again being in control in Jerusalem. Yet, nearly two hundred years later, Jesus applies the “abomination of desolation” language to the future, revealing that the Danielic imagery establishes a pattern of opposition to God’s rule preceding the eschatological judgment of God. Paul draws on Jesus’ eschatological instruction by similarly applying this Danielic imagery to events yet to occur. See Matthew 24:15; Mark 13:14.
2. Second, events have already presaged Roman imperial opposition to Jewish worship of God. In particular, the Emperor Gaius Caligula ordered soldiers to erect a cult image of himself in the Jerusalem Temple, despite widespread Jewish opposition (AD 40–41; Josephus, Antiquities 18.261–309.
In God’s providence, however, Gaius died while the image was still en route, so it was never installed. Paul almost certainly knows this history, and it may well be in his mind as he writes. Still, Paul’s argument works only if the man of lawlessness has not yet appeared, since the absence of the lawless one’s arrival proves that the day of the Lord is yet to come. See 2 Thessalonians 2.

Prayer Point:– I Rebuke every form of lawlessness and man of lawlessness that are working against my spiritual life and success henceforth by fire, die, in the name of Jesus Christ.

Have A Blessed Saturday!

Pastor Timothy Ogundele-Jesu

Pastor Timothy Ogundele-Jesu

Pastor Tim Ogundele_Jesu is a Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and an apostle by the grace of God. He has been used by God prominently in the area of salvation, healing, blessing, and especially deliverance.

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