“Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition,” (2 Thessalonians 2:3, emphasis mine). I heard read an interesting study saying that the word apostasy, meaning heresy and often translated as falling away or departure from the faith is a bad translation. The Greek word apostasia means departure, as in physically leaving a place. Nowhere in any ancient Greek text is the word apostasia used in the sense of heresy. It always means departure. Also, elsewhere in the New Testament the word is used only in the sense of departure.
In light of the true meaning of the word, 2 Thessalonians 2:3 should read: “Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the departure comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition,” (emphasis mine). The departure is when we leave earth—the Rapture.
The Rapture makes sense of verse 7, which says: “For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the One who now holds it back will continue to do so till He is taken out of the way.” Right now the Holy Spirit present on earth in the bodies of Christians is what is restraining evil from having full reign. When we are raptured away, evil will run rampant in the earth unrestrained. That’s when the antichrist will be revealed.
Here’s a link to read in more depth about the mis-translation of the word apostasia and the pre-tribulation rapture: The Rapture in 2 Thessalonians 2:3. And of course, you should read that whole passage to understand everything in context. In fact, go ahead and read the whole book of 2nd Thessalonians. It’s short. Read both books of Thessalonians. I’ll wait here until you get back. ☺
I’ve been visiting missionaries, Suki and Dave, in Tuscany, and together we visited a couple of churches. Last night I received a prophetic word. The prophet said that I have a strong character—said twice. And that I am at a crossroads where I need to make a decision, that I already know the right choice. Suki was also given a prophetic word that encouraged her.
It’s true, I was presented with an interesting choice—one that I didn’t tell anyone about. Potentially, the choice could make me a nice little profit, but I felt that it wasn’t the right choice. So I prayed about it. I didn’t get an answer per se, but just continued to feel that chasing the money wasn’t what God wanted me to do. This prophetic word confirmed what I had already felt.
This morning Suki told me that she had a word for me, Isaiah 45:1-3, which says: “This is what the Lord says to his anointed, to [Alisa—she inserted my name in place of Cyrus], whose right hand I take hold of to subdue nations before [her] and to strip kings of their armor, to open doors before [her] so that gates will not be shut: I will go before you and will level the mountains; I will break down gates of bronze and cut through bars of iron. I will give you hidden treasures, riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the Lord, the God of Israel, who summons you by name.” Amen! Hallelujah! This is not the first time I’ve received a word like this, but I never get tired of hearing about hidden treasures, the full inheritance, the table full of whatever I want (all of which have been prophesied over me). I know that God loves me and that He provides everything I could ever want or need.
Suki went on to say that as she was praying for me, the Lord showed her that my life has been a very solitary one, despite the fact that I’m a cheerful, friendly person. She didn’t have any way of knowing that about my past life (having only known me for a year), but she’s exactly right. Even during my marriage I was alone much of the time.
And my present life is very solitary. There are a lot of people who come and go, and I come and go, visiting missionaries all over Europe. But I am mostly alone, traveling from place to place. I don’t often write about loneliness because to be perfectly honest, I don’t often feel lonely. There is a big difference between being alone and being lonely. Although I am often alone, I rarely feel lonely. Plus, there are worse things than being lonely—and an unhappy marriage is one of them. But loneliness is something that most people fear, so they think that maybe I am unhappy when they realize how alone I am. I think this is what Suki thought when God revealed to her about my solitary life. I assured her that I am alone a lot, but very content, and living a very full life in the midst of solitude. I don’t know if I convinced her, but it’s the truth.
I have a ring that is twisted into a Mobius strip with Jeremiah 29:11 inscribed on it: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you, and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” I wear this ring on the finger where a wedding ring goes. It’s not that I hate men—not at all!—but I just don’t know how I would ever fit one into my life and ministry. I know that it’s easy to say no to the man I’ve never met, but to be honest, I now consider myself married to Jesus. I am anxiously waiting for the day when He comes to catch me up into the air for our wedding feast in Heaven. So if a man meets me and sees the ring on my finger, it tells the story: I’m already spoken for. And I keep myself busy, doing the work He has given me to do until that day comes—alone, but not lonely. God is good!