DATE: 51 AD
Not long after his first letter to the church at Thessalonica, Paul sent another. This one addressed a new situation. Somehow there had been misunderstanding, or misrepresentation (2:2), of Paul’s teaching concerning the coming of the Day of the Lord (1 Thess. 5:1-11) and some thought that they had missed the Rapture and judgments had begun. Thinking the end of the world was at hand, some had stopped working and were causing problems (2 Thess 3:6, 11). Paul wrote to correct their misunderstanding and to reprimand those who weren’t working.
This book gives a clear picture of the man of sin (2 Thess 2:1-12), which should be compared with other passages that tell of the Antichrist (Dan. 9:27; Matt. 24:15; Rev. 11:7; 13:1-10).
OUTLINE OF 2 THESSALONIANS
I. Salutation, 1:1-2
II. Thanksgiving and Encouragement in Persecution, 1:3-12
III. Correction Concerning the Day of the Lord, 2:1-17
A. Its Relation to the Present, 2:1-2
B. Its Relation to the Apostasy, 2:3a
C. Its Relation to the Man of Lawlessness, 2:3b-4
D. Its Relation to the Restrainer, 2:5-9
E. Its Relation to Unbelievers, 2:10-12
F. Its Relation to Believers, 2:13-17
IV. Exhortations to Prayer and Discipline, 3:1-15
A. Paul’s Confidence, 3:1-5
B. Paul’s Commands, 3:6-15
V. Concluding Benediction and Greeting, 3:16-18
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