THE SECOND EPISTLE OF ST. PAUL TO THE THESSALONIANS
The Second Letter of St. Paul to the Thessalonians is preceded by First Thessalonians, and followed by his First Letter to Timothy in the New Testament of the Bible.
Second Thessalonians is important because of its apocalyptic nature, for it describes the events that will take place before the Parousia, the Second Coming of the Lord.
Acts 17:1 describes St. Paul arriving in Thessalonica in the course of his second apostolic journey (49-52 AD), after leaving Philippi. Thessalonica was an important port in Macedonia on the Aegean Sea (and still exists today as Salonika). He stayed in the house of Jason and was quite successful in converting many Jews there to Christianity. But jealousy arose, and he had to leave Thessalonica in a hurry (Acts 17:5-9). This occasioned St. Paul's First Letter to the Thessalonians, to continue instruction to his new converts to Christianity.
The timing and purpose of the Second Letter to the Thessalonians is not as clear. Chapter 2:1-12 reveals valuable information on the "son of perdition" or "the lawless one," referred to in the Gospel of John 17:12 and the Book of Revelation, as well as describe events that must take place before the Parousia. 2:14 is a key reference for the Tradition of the Church. Chapter 3 describes the importance of the work ethic.
The following Scripture is from the Douay-Rheims Bible, now in the public domain. The Douay-Rheims Bible was the standard English Bible for Catholics for over 300 years, and still remains in use today. The Douay-Rheims Bible was the first approved English translation of St. Jerome's Latin Vulgate Bible. The Old Testament translation was completed at the English College of Douai, France in 1609, and the New Testament at the English College of Rheims, France in 1582. The Douay-Rheims Bible was revised by Bishop Challoner in England from 1749 to 1752. The Haydock Douay-Rheims Bible of 1814 was the one upon which President John F. Kennedy took the oath of office on January 20, 1961 to become the 35th President of the United States.
THE SECOND LETTER OF ST. PAUL TO THE THESSALONIANS
1 Paul, and Sylvanus, and Timothy, to the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Grace unto you, and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
3 We are bound to give thanks always to God for you, brethren, as it is fitting, because your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you towards each other, aboundeth: 4 So that we ourselves also glory in you in the churches of God, for your patience and faith, and in all your persecutions and tribulations, which you endure,
5 For an example of the just judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which also you suffer.
6 Seeing it is a just thing with God to repay tribulation to them that trouble you: 7 And to you who are troubled, rest with us when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven, with the angels of his power: 8 In a flame of fire, giving vengeance to them who know not God, and who obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 Who shall suffer eternal punishment in destruction, from the face of the Lord, and from the glory of his power: 10 When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be made wonderful in all them who have believed; because our testimony was believed upon you in that day.
11 Wherefore also we pray always for you; that our God would make you worthy of his vocation, and fulfill all the good pleasure of his goodness and the work of faith in power; 12 That the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God, and of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Our Lord Jesus Christ and the son of perdition
1 And we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and of our gathering together unto him: 2 That you be not easily moved from your sense, nor be terrified, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by epistle, as sent from us, as if the day of the Lord were at hand.
3 Let no man deceive you by any means, for unless there come a revolt first, and the man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition, 4 Who opposeth, and is lifted up above all that is called God, or that is worshipped, so that he sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself as if he were God. 5 Remember you not, that when I was yet with you, I told you these things?
6 And now you know what withholdeth, that he may be revealed in his time. 7 For the mystery of iniquity already worketh; only that he who now holdeth, do hold, until he be taken out of the way. 8 And then that wicked one shall be revealed whom the Lord Jesus shall kill with the spirit of his mouth; and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming, him, 9 Whose coming is according to the working of Satan, in all power, and signs, and lying wonders, 10 And in all seduction of iniquity to them that perish; because they receive not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. Therefore God shall send them the operation of error, to believe lying:
11 That all may be judged who have not believed the truth, but have consented to iniquity.
Stand with the Lord
12 But we ought to give thanks to God always for you, brethren, beloved of God, for that God hath chosen you firstfruits unto salvation, in sanctification of the spirit, and faith of the truth: 13 Whereunto also he hath called you by our gospel, unto the purchasing of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
14 Therefore, brethren, stand fast; and hold the traditions
which you have learned, whether by word, or by our epistle.
15 Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God and our Father, who hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation, and good hope in grace,
16 Exhort your hearts, and confirm you in every good work and word.
Request for Prayers
1 For the rest, brethren, pray for us, that the word of God may run, and may be glorified, even as among you; 2 And that we may be delivered from importunate and evil men; for all men have not faith. 3 But God is faithful, who will strengthen and keep you from evil. 4 And we have confidence concerning you in the Lord, that the things which we command, you both do, and will do. 5 And the Lord direct your hearts, in the charity of God, and the patience of Christ.
6 And we charge you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw yourselves from every brother walking disorderly, and not according to the tradition which they have received of us.
7 For yourselves know how you ought to imitate us:
for we were not disorderly among you;
8 Neither did we eat any man's bread for nothing,
but in labour and in toil we worked night and day,
lest we should be chargeable to any of you.
9 Not as if we had not power:
but that we might give ourselves a pattern unto you, to imitate us.
10 For also when we were with you, this we declared to you:
that, if any man will not work, neither let him eat.
11 For we have heard there are some among you who walk disorderly, working not at all, but curiously meddling. 12 Now we charge them that are such, and beseech them by the Lord Jesus Christ, that, working with silence, they would eat their own bread. 13 But you, brethren, be not weary in well doing. 14 And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and do not keep company with him, that he may be ashamed: 15 Yet do not esteem him as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother.
16 Now the Lord of peace himself give you everlasting peace in every place. The Lord be with you all.
17 The salutation of Paul with my own hand;
which is the sign in every epistle. So I write.
18 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.