Vincent's Word Studies, by Marvin R. Vincent, , at sacred-texts.com
2 Thessalonians 2:1
By the coming (ὑπὲρ)
More correctly touching. Comp. Rom 9:27; Co2 1:8. Ὑπὲρ never in N.T. in a formula of swearing.
Gathering together (ἐπισυναγωγῆς)
Only here and Heb 10:25. The verb ἐπισυνάγειν is used, as the noun here, of the Lord's gathering together his elect at his coming. See Mat 24:31; Mar 13:27; comp. 2 Macc. 2:7.
2 Thessalonians 2:2
From σάλος the tossing or swell of the sea. See Luk 21:25. Comp. Mat 11:7; Mat 24:29; Act 4:31; Heb 12:26.
In mind (ἀπὸ τοῦ νοὸς)
More correctly, from your mind. Νοῦς signifies the judgment, sober sense. Comp. Co1 14:15, and see on Rom 7:23. They are to "keep their heads" under the temptation to fanatical extravagances concerning the Lord's appearing.
Be troubled (θρεῖσθαι)
From θροός clamor, tumult. The meaning is be unsettled or thrown into confusion.
By spirit (διὰ πνεύματος)
By prophetic utterances of individuals in Christian assemblies, claiming the authority of divine revelations.
By word (διὰ λόγου)
Oral expressions falsely imputed to Paul.
By letter as from us (δἰ ἐπιστολῆς ὡς δἰ ἡμῶν)
Const. as from us with word and letter. The reference is to a letter or letters forged in Paul's name; not to the first Thessalonian Epistle, as misunderstood by the readers.
As that (ὡς ὅτι)
Indicating the contents of such communications.
Is at hand (ἐνέστηκεν)
Better than Rev. is now present. Lightfoot, happily, is imminent.
2 Thessalonians 2:3
Better beguile; since the word means not only making a false impression, but actually leading astray. Except there come a falling away. Before except insert in translation the day shall not come. Such ellipses are common in Paul.
Falling away (ἀποστασία)
Only here and Act 21:21. Comp. lxx, Jos 22:22; Ch2 29:19.
The man of sin - the son of perdition (ὁ ἄνθρωπος τῆς ἀνομίας, ὁ υἱὸς τῆς ἀπωλείας)
See on children of light, Th1 5:5. The phrase man of sin (lawlessness) does not occur elsewhere, either in N.T. or lxx. Son of perdition is found Joh 17:12, olxx: τέκνα ἄπωλείας children of perdition (A.V. transgression), Isa 57:4. The man of sin has been thought to refer to Caligula, Titus, Simon Magus, Nero, the Pope of Rome, Luther, Mahomet, etc.
2 Thessalonians 2:4
That is called God (λεγόμενον θεὸν)
Above the true God and the false gods. The opposer claims divine honors for himself.
That is worshipped (σέβασμα)
An object of adoration, including things as well as persons. Only here and Act 17:23 on which see note under devotions.
Temple of God
According to some, a figure of the Christian Church. Others, the temple of Jerusalem.
Publicly asserting divine dignity. Rev. setting himself forth as God.
2 Thessalonians 2:6
What withholdeth (τὸ κατέχον)
Better restraineth. The verb means to hold fast, as Luk 8:15 : to hold back, as Luk 4:42. See on Rom 1:18. He refers to some power which hinders the revelation of the man of sin or Antichrist.
In his time (ἐν τῷ αὐτοῦ καιρῷ)
Better, in his own season, Not before his appointed season.
2 Thessalonians 2:7
Mystery of iniquity (μυστήριον τῆς ἀνομίας)
Better, of lawlessness. The phrase is unique in N.T. and olxx. Mystery is found in various combinations, as mystery of the kingdom of heaven, Mat 13:11 : of God, Co1 2:1 : of his will, Eph 1:9 : of Christ, Eph 3:4 : of the gospel, Eph 6:19 : of faith, Ti1 3:9 : of godliness, Ti1 3:16 : of the seven stars Rev 1:20 : of the woman, Rev 17:7. A mystery does not lie in the obscurity of a thing, but in its secrecy. It is not in the thing, but envelops it. Applied to a truth, it signifies a truth once hidden but now revealed or to be revealed; a truth which without special revelation would be unknown. It is almost universally found in connection with words signifying publication or revelation. See on Mat 13:11. The mystery of lawlessness is the mass of lawlessness yet hidden, but which is to reveal itself in the person and power of Antichrist. The position of the word is emphatic, emphasizing the concealed character of the evil power.
The sentence is elliptical: "only we must wait," or "only it must work in secret, until he that letteth," etc. For a similar instance see Gal 2:10. The collocation of A.V. is wrong.
The same word as restraineth, Th2 2:6. Let is old English for hinder, prevent. Often in Chaucer.
"May I him lette of that?" (prevent him from it).
Troil. and Cress. ii. 732.
"And bothe in love y-like sore they brente (burned)
That noon or alle hir (their) frendes might hit lette."
Legend of Good Women, 731.
"What lets but one may enter?"
Two Gentlemen of Verona, iii. 1.
"I'll make a ghost of him that lets me."
Hamlet i. 4.
"The flesh resisteth the work of the Holy Ghost in our hearts, and lets it." - Latimer, Serm.
2 Thessalonians 2:8
Better, slay, as Mat 2:16; Luk 22:2; Act 5:33.
Better, breath. Πνεῦμα, almost always translated spirit, is from πνεῖν to breathe or blow. Frequent in class. in this sense. Comp. Joh 3:8; Heb 1:7. lxx, Psa 147:7; Ep. of Jer. 61. Philo says "the spirit of God signifies, in one sense, the air, the third element; and it is used in this sense in the beginning of Genesis... for air, being light, is born up, and uses water as its basis. In the other sense it is the pure wisdom in which every wise man participates" (De Gigantibus, 5). See on Rom 8:4.
Shall destroy (καταργήσει)
See on cumbereth, Luk 13:7 and see on make without effect, Rom 3:3.
With the brightness (τῇ ἐπιφανείᾳ)
See on Ti1 6:14. Rev., correctly, manifestation. See lxx, Est 5:1; Amo 5:22; 2 Macc. 2:21; 3 Macc. 2:9. In class. (but late) of deities appearing to a worshipper (Plut. Themistocles, 30): of the sudden appearance of an enemy (Polyb. i. 54, 2): of a manifestation of Providence (Diod. Sic. i. 15): of the heathen gods assuming shape and appearing in order to work mischief (Just. Mart. Apol. i. 5). In N.T. of the parousia. See Ti1 6:14; Ti2 1:10; Ti2 4:1, Ti2 4:8; Tit 2:13. In Ti2 1:10, of Christ's historical manifestation. So ἐπιφαίνω, Tit 2:11; Tit 3:4. Only here in Paul.
Or presence, which is the original meaning. In N.T. with a few exceptions, of the second coming of Christ. The combination manifestation of his presence (only here) appears to emphasize the resistless power of the Son of man, not (as Lightfoot) his splendor and glory. The mere appearing of his presence suffices to destroy his adversary.
2 Thessalonians 2:9
After the working of Satan
The sense is that the coming of Antichrist proclaims itself to be according to the working of Satan by means of power, signs, etc. Ενέργεια Po. power in exercise, used only of superhuman power. See Col 1:29; Col 2:12.
Signs and lying wonders (σημείοις καὶ τέρασιν ψεύδους)
Lit. signs and wonders of a lie. Of a lie characterizes the three words, power, signs, wonders. All bear the stamp of fraud. For signs and wonders see on Mat 24:24, and see on mighty works, Mat 11:20.
2 Thessalonians 2:10
Deceivableness of unrighteousness (ἀπάτῃ ἀδικίας)
Better deceit of unrighteousness; which is characteristic of unrighteousness and is employed by it.
2 Thessalonians 2:11
Strong delusion (ἐνέργειαν πλάνης)
Rev., literally and correctly, a working of error. See on working Th2 2:9. The phrase is unique in N.T. It means an active power of misleading. For πλάνη error which shows itself in action, see on Th1 2:3.
A lie (τῷ ψεύδει)
Properly, the lie. The article gives the generic sense, falsehood in all its forms. Comp. Joh 8:44; Rom 1:25; Eph 4:25. Comp. the contrast of truth and unrighteousness in Th2 2:12. All wrongdoing has an element of falsity.
2 Thessalonians 2:12
Might be damned (κριθῶσιν)
More correctly, judged. See on damnation, Ti1 5:12.
2 Thessalonians 2:13
Hath chosen (εἵλατο)
The only case in N.T. in which this word is used of God's election. lxx, Deu 26:18, of God's choosing Israel to be his peculiar people. Comp. Phi 1:22; Heb 11:25.
From the beginning (ἀπ' ἀρχῆς)
Not elsewhere in Paul. His usual expressions are πρὸ τῶν αἰώνων before the ages (Co1 2:7): πρὸ καταβολῆς κόσμου before the foundation of the world (Eph 1:4): ἀπὸ τῶν αἰώνων from the ages (Eph 3:9). Before eternal times (πρὸ χρόνων αἰωνίων) is found Ti2 1:9; Tit 1:2.
2 Thessalonians 2:14
See on Th1 1:5.
2 Thessalonians 2:15
See on Co1 11:2. Not emphasizing a distinction between written and oral tradition. Tradition, in the scriptural sense, may be either written or oral. It implies on the part of a teacher that he is not expressing his own ideas, but is delivering or handing over (παραδίδωμι) a message received from some one else. See Co1 11:23. The prominent idea of παράδοσις is therefore that of an authority external to the teacher. Comp. by word nor by letter, Th2 2:2.
2 Thessalonians 2:16
Through grace (ἐν χάριτι)
Better, in grace, as the element of God's gift. Const. with hath given, not with hath loved and hath given.