Today I want to talk about 2nd Thessalonians chapter 2 verse 7 which I've often been shown by those who believe in the pre-trib rapture, and this is a verse that they believe is very clear evidence that the rapture comes before the tribulation. Let me read it for you and you can be the judge. The Bible says in 2nd Thessalonians chapter 2 verse 7, "For the mystery of iniquity doth already work, only he who now letteth will let until he be taken out of the way, and then shall that wicked be revealed whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming." Well there you have it folks, crystal clear right? I mean that verse just teaches a pre-trib rapture, I don't understand how you don't see it viewer.
Well actually I'm just kidding, I don't see it either because it's not there. The Bible says "he who now letteth will let until he be taken out of the way." It's a pretty vague verse for these pre tribbers to be resting their entire doctrine upon. Now, you say "Pastor Anderson, how do they even get a pre-trib rapture out of that verse?" Well, it's easy. They get it from Scofield's notes. In the Scofield reference Bible he "explains" that "he who now letteth is the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit has to be taken out of the way before the antichrist can be revealed, and since the Holy Spirit lives inside believers, that means believers have to be taken from this earth, in order for the Holy Spirit to be removed, then the antichrist can be revealed. And so the Holy Spirit is restraining the antichrist, and so believers have to be removed." Now look, let me explain to you why this is completely unbiblical, and blasphemous and false doctrine.
First of all, the Holy Spirit is God. You cannot just take God out of the way, He's God, He's everywhere! The Bible says that if we ascend into heaven, He's there, if we make our bed in hell, He's there, if we go down to the depths of the sea, the Bible says the Spirit of God is there. The Spirit of God is everywhere, the Spirit of God IS God. Now, you can't take Him out of the way, He's God. And so to say "well believers are going to be taken, because the Holy Spirit has got to be taken", that's a BIG, big stretch, and it's also blasphemous, to say you're going to take God out of the way, and it's also just not in the verse at all, there's no mention of the Holy Spirit. And that's what leads me to my next point. You know the pronoun "he" there, is taking the place of a noun, pronouns take the place of a noun. And every pronoun has what's called an "antecedent", a word that comes before it to tell us what that pronoun is. You see, if you just start using the word "he" with someone and you haven't told them who you're talking about, you're going to confuse whoever you're talking to.
First, you mention the person's name. I might say, "I have a friend named Dave, HE is a computer programmer." But I'm not just going to walk up to someone and say "He is a computer programmer.", unless I'm pointing to that person, or I've mentioned them previously, which is known as the antecedent. Well, here is the problem. The Holy Spirit is never mentioned in 1st Thessalonians 1 or 1st Thessalonians 2 up to this point, there's been no mention of the Holy Spirit. So, how can we just assume that the word "he" is referring to the Holy Spirit, when the Holy Spirit has not been mentioned in the passage whatsoever! Now, the man of sin has been mentioned, and that's actually who the "he" is referring to, the "he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way", it's talking about the man of sin being killed, because he receives a deadly wound and if you remember, his deadly wound is healed.
But the Bible says he is wounded to death, and in Revelation 17 it says that he ascends out of the bottomless pit. And of course that's a whole other sermon, and I've preached on that and explained that many times. But the bottom line is, the Holy Spirit is not mentioned, the man of sin is. And so the "he", in verse 7, cannot be referring to the Holy Spirit because He is not mentioned, number 1, and number 2, the Holy Spirit can't be taken out of the way because He is God. Man can be taken out of the way, but God can't. And so, this is a very, very weak proof of a pre-trib rapture, in fact, it's no proof at all. But these are the kind of things that pre-tribbers have to use, because there's little scripture that they can even twist to support their doctrine. This is the best they can do folks. 2nd Thessalonians 2. Here's the best they can do for a clear scripture. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work, only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way." Of course those that believe in a Post-trib rapture have crystal clear scriptures in Mathew 24, Mark 13, Luke 17, Luke 21, and on and on and on.
Main Scripture/s 2 Thessalonians 2:7
FAITHFUL WORD BAPTIST CHURCH
2707 W Southern Ave, Suite #105 Tempe, AZ 85282
Phone: (602) 456-1049, E-mail:email@example.com
Pastor Steven Anderson of Faithful Word Baptist Church