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 Vol. 7, No. 12 

December 2005

Since You Asked

~ Page 20 ~

Image Names may be included at the discretion of the Editor unless querists request their names be withheld. Please check our Archive for the answer to your question before submitting it; there are over 1,000 articles in the Archive addressing numerous biblical topics. Submit a Question to GGO.

Apostasy from Primitive Christianity

By Louis Rushmore

Image Second Thessalonians 2:3-10 addresses an apostasy from primitive Christianity. Other New Testament passages likewise speak of an apostasy from primitive Christianity (Acts 20:29-30; 1 Timothy 4:1-3; 2 Timothy 3:1-9; 4:3-4; 2 Peter 2:1-2). As indicated in the forgoing Scripture references as well as others (2 Corinthians 11:14-15; 1 John 4:1), many false teachers will be erring Christians or at least appear to be servants of God when they are not. However, 2 Thessalonians 2:3-10 has peaked interest respecting whether a particular person or persons are meant in that context, namely is it a reference to the Roman Catholic Pope.

The following URL includes some information respecting 2 Thessalonians 2:3-10.

http://www.gospelgazette.com/gazette/2001/apr/page18.htm

Below, please note further observations regarding the passage of 2 Thessalonians 2:3-10.

The primary application of the passage about apostasy pertains to the generation in which the Epistle of 2 Thessalonians was written--the first century. We know this because 2 Thessalonians 2:7 notes that the apostasy under discussion was already underway. Catholicism, with its Catholic pope, was yet hundreds of years in the future from when 2 Thessalonians 2:3-10 was penned. In addition, application of the passage to any specific historical person (as many diverse opinions have done throughout the centuries) meets the same objection, namely that the apostasy mentioned was already budding. Application of the passage to any particular person is highly subjective and not defensible (i.e., verifiable) by the Bible itself.

The 2 Thessalonians 2:3-10 passage may refer to an apostasy before the destruction of Jerusalem, and compare to Jesus' statement in Matthew 24:4-12, 23-24. The Book of Hebrews also attempted to prevent a widespread Jewish apostasy from Christianity.Image

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