Part #02 of “The Mystery of Iniquity”
“Biblical prophecy is the key to understanding and coming to grips with what is going on in the world today.”
Prophecy written in the Bible thousands of years ago concerning Christ’s first advent, was fulfilled to every jot and tittle.
And this both testifies and validates the Authoritative Inerrancy and Accuracy of the Bible, as being God’s Word.
There is no other book like it on the planet!
That’s why we can trust the Bible regarding events prophetically foretold thousands of years ago.
Not just concerning our present day, but what’s to follow too.
We are speaking about current events leading to what is seriously coming very shortly.
And so none of us can ever make the claim that we did not know.
The Bible categorically tells us we’ll be “without excuse” [Romans 1:20].
Remember the message of the Bible is both one of ‘great infallible hope, and also one of great warning’ too.
And if we choose to lay hold of ‘this blessed revealed hope’ by faith…..
…….it would completely deliver us from the unprecedented catastrophic revealed results of the warning to come.
For God has categorically made the way out for every single one of us without exception.
And we can freely take it and embrace it unconditionally with no strings attached.
A Word About Prophecy
Since we are talking about prophecy, we’d like to give you a word of warning about prophecy.
There is no valid prophecy in this ‘Age of Grace’ that many claim to have.
Contained in between the two covers of the Bible, is all the prophecy there is, that’s it.
Anything else out of it is nothing short of deception.
There are several ministers of prophecy or ‘prophetic ministries’ out there today, claiming to have heard from heaven.
They claim to have a special revelation or a word of prophecy from God.
Unfortunately, Christendom for the most part, has become rampant with this kind of deception.
And people are naïve enough to flock towards them, falling for the trap, because they want to know their personal future and fortunes foretold.
They have lost their peace and hope, resulting in frustration, apart from losing their precious hard earned money.
‘Believers’ are called to “live by faith” [Romans 1:17].
For “without faith”, which is simply taking God at His Word, “it is impossible to please Him” [Hebrews 11:6].
But All Is Not Lost
However, all is not lost, but far from it.
If you are one of them, just get back to the truth, especially that which is revealed through the Apostle Paul.
Because what Paul pens down is relevant for us in ‘Age of Grace’, that we live in today.
There is nothing missing, it’s complete, as Paul says so in [Colossians 1:25].
“Whereof I am made a minister”, he says.
“….according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil (complete) the word of God;”
Whatever may be going on out there, the truth of God’s Word in the Bible, ‘NEVER CHANGES’.
Prophecy For Israel
We will do well to remember that Biblical prophecy was predominantly for the nation of Israel.
It began with a promise made to Abraham in [Genesis 12:1-3].
This was then followed up by the major and minor Jewish prophets in the Old Testament.
That prophetic office ‘DOES NOT’ exist today and never will too.
Everything that was spoken of by the prophets of old, was for the nation of Israel, and ‘NOT’ for the Church.
The Church, the ‘Body of Christ’ was always shielded and well insulated from prophecy.
The Church was a part of God’s ‘Mystery programme’, kept secret and hidden, till revealed only to the Apostle Paul.
Paul the Apostle, who writes by ‘direct revelation’ from the Ascended Lord says so.
This secret programme of God was……..
“According to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began” [Romans 16:25].
Now that’s as plain and clear as daylight.
We’ve got to go by what the Scriptures say, and not by what men make up and speak.
Never forget that!
To Prophesy Today
To prophesy today simply means to speak out what God has ‘already revealed’ through ‘HIS’ Word, in the Bible.
We don’t get to add to that or claim something different.
Even in the New Testament, yes, God did give the early Church the prophetic ministry.
But what was their role?
That’s the question which has gone totally out of hand.
The early Church had no written New Testament Word with the epistles of Paul, like we have today.
Paul did not start writing his epistles till about 15-16 years after he started his preaching ministry in about 40 A.D.
So how would the ‘Body of Christ’ Churches that had been established, be spiritually fed with the Word of God?
Through Holy Spirit-gifted men, who could prophesy, that is, speak forth God’s Word, the same as revealed to the Apostle Paul.
That makes perfect sense, doesn’t it?
Paul Says It Clearly
That is why Paul, speaking of the God’s ‘Mystery Programme’ clearly says in [Ephesians 3:5]:
“Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men”, because it was kept secret.
“…as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;”
These are the same prophets and apostles 👆🏾 that the Apostle Paul mentions in [Ephesians 4:11-12].
The Ascended Christ gave the early Church some apostles and prophets, along with some evangelists, pastors and teachers.
And here is the reason and purpose why: 👇🏾
“For the perfecting (or maturing and spiritual growth) of the saints”, (referred to as believers).
And also, “for the work of the ministry, for the edifying (building up) of the body of Christ:”
That’s plain simple language!
They were not gifted to foretell the future or anything else.
And then, as that revealed word came into print, that New Testament office of prophecy and apostles started to faded away.
Today, we can have that printed Word in our hands and every home, and even on our mobile phones.
So, what now remains from that list in [Ephesians 4:11], are the evangelists, the pastors and the teachers.
“Take heed” and “do not be deceived”, are warnings that both Jesus Christ and the Apostle Paul give us today.
Facebook and YouTube are full of so-called prophets and apostles, so watch your back!
‘Stick close’ to the Apostle Paul and you won’t get “carried away by every wind of doctrine”.
[Ephesians 4:14] clearly says it all, and it doesn’t get clearer than that.
Take 👆🏾 a good careful look at it for yourselves!
The Mystery Of Iniquity
‘The Mystery Of Iniquity’ is what this series is about, and we’ve taken some time to get here.
Saying that, we do always take the time to make folks aware of the rampant deception that is out there.
The Apostle Paul, in what’s to follow, comes as close to prophecy, as he does in any portion of his writings.
Here, in [2 Thessalonians 2:7], Paul the Apostle makes a telling statement.
“For the mystery of iniquity doth already work:”, he says.
In the previous article, we mentioned that this ‘mystery of iniquity’ is powerfully and quietly operating behind the scenes.
Paul then goes on to say, “only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.”
Now that may look a bit of confusing language to some of us.
So let’s look to pick it up in the statements that Paul makes, preceding this verse.
The Seven-Year Period
In the Epistle of 2 Thessalonians Chapter 2, Paul is introducing us to this seven-year period of time.
This is the same seven years which Jesus in [Matthew 24] calls, the “time of Tribulation”.
Paul writes to the Thessalonians believers, who had gotten to the place with all the persecution and pressure that they were under.
They were afraid that the Rapture had taken place, and they had missed it.
So, Paul had to quickly come back and reassure them that they hadn’t missed the Rapture.
That, yes, things were going to get tough, but that wasn’t their situation.
They, by no means, had missed the Rapture.
So, Paul encourages and assures them in [2 Thessalonians 2:1-2]:
“Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto Him.”
“Our gathering together unto Him”, is speaking of the Rapture.
These little bunch of words sets the Rapture completely apart from Christ’s second Coming.
At the second Coming, ‘Christ won’t be gathering people unto Himself’.
But here Paul is referring to the ‘Act of Christ’, where He’s going to gather ‘His Own’ unto Himself.
And that’s the Rapture of the Church, that universal assembly of believers who have placed their faith in the Gospel.
Paul Exhorts The Believers
And so Paul exhorts the believers by telling them:
“That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled”
In other words, Paul is setting their mind at ease that they hadn’t missed the Rapture.
“Nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.”
And now he’s going to give them points to look for, so that they’ll know that they haven’t missed it.
This categorically applies to every single one of us today without exception, who have trusted God’s ‘Gospel of Grace’.
How that, “Jesus Christ died for our sins, was buried and rose again, according to the Scriptures” [1 Corinthians 15:1-4].
The Day Of Christ
“Neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that day of Christ is at hand.”
Let’s stop and define this 👆🏾.
The ‘Day of Christ’ is referring to that out-calling of the Church, the Rapture.
Whereas the ‘Day of The Lord’, as mentioned in [2 Peter 3:10], which is the Day of God, is different.
It’s that period of time, which includes the Tribulation, Christ’s Second Coming to earth, and the setting up of the Kingdom.
That’s all referred to as the ‘Day of The Lord’.
But, the ‘Day of Christ’ is that time when Christ will call the ‘Body of Christ’ unto Himself.
Let No Man Deceive You
“Let no man deceive you by any means”, Paul is strongly making them aware in [ 2 Thessalonians 2:3]
“For that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first”, he says.
“That day”, speaks of the ‘day of Christ’, the calling-out of the Body of Christ.
But something else first has to take place, before that happens.
There has to be, “a falling away first”.
Now, that ‘falling away’, in the original Greek is ‘apostasia’, from which we get the word, ‘apostasy’.
Unfortunately, many people, including Christians and churchgoing members, do not know what apostasy is.
‘Apostasy’ is that turning away from the revealed truth of the Word of God.
And that is exactly where we are today!
Christendom, for the most part, has apostatized.
They have turned their backs on the basic truths of Scripture.
And this is why all the false teachings are having such a free run in several main-line denominations within Christendom.
There are theologians and pastors and preachers who are denying the Virgin birth of Christ.
They are denying the literal, physical, visible Resurrection of Christ Jesus.
They have turned their backs on the revealed truth of the Word of God.
And this is taking place according to what Paul told Timothy, his son in the faith, in [Timothy 4:1].
“In the latter times some shall depart from the faith”, Paul tells Timothy.
Those who shall“depart from the faith”, obviously refers to seemingly professing Christians.
These professing Christians, who have not really heart-embraced the truth of the Gospel, shall turn their back on it.
And this is taking place at this very day and time, so we’re in it, shocking as it may sound.
So here’s the thing:
What does that tell us?
We could be expecting the ‘Day of Christ’ at any time because the apostasy has now come about.
So, after this ‘falling away’, Paul tells us:
“And that man of sin (shall) be revealed, the son of perdition;”
This ‘man of sin’ referred to as ‘the son of perdition’, is speaking of the anti-Christ.
A Departure In Between
Now we know from Scripture, that in between this ‘falling away’ (departure from the faith), and the ‘man of sin revealed’…….
…..there must be another kind of ‘departure’ too.
So we might say that within [2 Thessalonians 2:3], we have three events or things happening.
There’s not only the ‘apostasia’, a substantial ‘falling away’ of Christendom.
Those who have turned and are turning, their backs on the truth of the Word of God.
But also the ‘departure’ of the ‘believer’ himself.
All true believers in Paul’s ‘Gospel of Grace’ [1 Corinthians 15:1-4], are also going to ‘depart’ too, but not from “the faith”.
Rather, they will be taken ‘out of the way’, ‘Raptured out’.
ONLY THEN, the “man of sin”, the anti Christ shall be revealed.
No Personal Opinions
None of these are our personal opinions in any way,
Even in Daniel’s (the Old Testament prophet) vision, this is what the angel told him in [Daniel 10:21]:
“I will shew thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth:”
And that’s what it’s all about, “what the Scriptures say”, and not what any man says.
SO, long as there is even one single believer on the planet…..
…….that ‘man of sin’, the ‘anti-Christ’, CANNOT be revealed.
(This is further confirmed in the succeeding verse in [2 Thessalonians 2:7], which we will explain in the next article.)
So, the moment these two events takes place:
The apostatized “falling away” and the “departure” of the Church, the ‘Body of Christ’.
Then, the anti-Christ is revealed and comes on to the scene.
And that throws ‘out of the window’, all speculations and theorizing going on today, as to who the anti-Christ will be.
That will not happen, and cannot happen, until the Church, the ‘Body of Christ’ is first ‘taken off’ the scene.
CLICK [HERE] for the next Part #03 of “THE MYSTERY OF INIQUITY”
(Please note, all that is written in the orange colour, are connecting links, so do refer to them. You will find them to be very useful.)