The Man of Sin and the Mystery of Iniquity

Note:  The author of this article is unknown.  I regret not being able to give him or her the credit due for such an outstanding discussion.

(Scriptures quoted throughout this article are from the King James Version. The name of the Creator YHWH pronounced by most scholars as Yahweh, and the name of the true Messiah, Y’Shua have both been restored. The titles Messiah and Elohim have been restored from the improper “Christ”, “Lord” and “God”)

There has been much speculation as to who or what the “man of sin” of the second chapter of II Thessalonians could be.  Also the same holds for who or what the “anti-messiah” might be.  It should be understood by the reader that “anti” doesn’t just mean “opposed to”, but also includes the idea of “in place of” hence, a “substitute messiah”.

This article will not attempt to absolutely determine the answers to those and similar questions. It will instead show scriptural evidence which when combined with basic observation of many current doctrinal teachings lead one to a possible conclusion which may be shocking or offensive to some.  The intent of the author is neither to shock nor offend.

Truth is not always what you want it to be, in fact it probably is rarely what the average person “wants” it to be.  It can be observed that most people “want” the bible to say that salvation in this age comes cheap and easy.  In other words, they would prefer to think that there will no or little personal cost and no or little effort on their part needed.

A few scriptures here should quickly dispel this notion.

  Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. Philippians 2:12

 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. Jude 1:3

  Then said Y’Shua unto his disciples, If any will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his staff and follow me. Matthew 16:24

  Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent. Revelation 2:5

 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only. James 2:24

 So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.  Luke 14:33

 Study to show thyself approved unto YHWH, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2Timothy 2:15

 So with these few writings we see that there is a cost involved for those who wish to be in the first (the better) resurrection.  There are many other scriptures proving this point of course, but these shall suffice for now.  In essence the cost is EVERYTHING! Don’t believe it?  Look again at what is attributed to being said by the very Master Himself… “whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.”  You must be willing to forsake your family, your church, your friends, your old belief system, your material possessions, your standing in society, and your career.  Abraham proved his faith by BEING WILLING to sacrifice his very son!  YHWH allowed HIS VERY SON to be sacrificed!  Why should you not be willing to sacrifice?  I usually do not like to belabor a point but this one must be stressed before you can understand the significance of the premise of this writing.  I only ask the reader to BE WILLING TO FORSAKE your previous notions taught to you in your whole lifetime, in order to open your eyes and ears spiritually to what the Set-Apart Spirit wants to communicate to you.  If your mind is already made up and you are steadfast in what you believe, you might not leave any room for the Spirit to teach you!

  Ok, on with the passage in question relating to the revealing of the “man of sin”. Let’s read it along with some commentary.  Some of the commentary is of the author and some will be with other bible passages. 

2 Thessalonians 2:1-12

2:1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Master Y’Shua the Messiah, and by our gathering together unto him,

2:2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of the Messiah is at hand.

Verse 1 is a clear reference to what nominal Christianity calls “the rapture”.  We are told not to worry about it coming before two other things happen first. 

2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;

The falling away has been happening since the end of the first century when paganistic ideas began to be merged with the teachings of Messiah combining to form an abomination which was later solidified by Constantine and those who followed him as political/religious leaders.  The “man of sin” is now being revealed for what he is.

2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called elohim, or that is worshipped; so that he as elohim sitteth in the temple of elohim, shewing himself that he is elohim.

There are two things to note in verse 4.  This man of sin will oppose and exalt himself above all that is worshipped including the true Elohim, YHWH.  Secondly he will do this in the temple of Elohim.  Let’s take the second point first.  Most Christians believe this is proof that a third temple has to be built on the temple mount in Jerusalem before the Messiah can return.  Possibly this will take place but it doesn’t necessarily have to be.  The reason is that our bodies are now also referred to as “the temple”.

But he spake of the temple of his body. John 2:21

What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit which is in you, which ye have of YHWH, and ye are not your own? 1 Corinthians 6:19

Could it be that this “man of sin” exalts himself as being higher than YHWH in the hearts and minds of men?  Well let’s just see.  It is very apparent that many men and women already have an image in their mind of one they presume to be co-equal to YHWH himself.  Some even go as far as to say that this man-god they worship is indeed ALL POWERFUL, even above the heavenly Father.  Some say he IS the heavenly Father. 

2:5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?

2:6 And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.

2:7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.

The King James Version renders verse 7 as you see it above.  Many other translations more accurately translate “mystery of iniquity” as “mystery of lawlessness” and others better yet translate it as “secret of lawlessness”.  The key word for this study is LAWLESSNESS!

[A side issue in verse 7 is who the “he” is.  Many Christian denominations teach that “he” is “the Holy Spirit” or the Set-Apart Spirit of YHWH although there is nothing elsewhere in scripture to back this up.  This author believes that the “he” is the arch angel Michael. 

And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book. Daniel 12:1

According to Strong’s Hebrew # 05975, the word for “stand up” is `amad {aw-mad'} and one of the renderings is:  to stand still, stop (moving or doing), cease

In other words, Michael will be out of the way as he stands still for the intended purposes of YHWH.  As mentioned above, this is a side issue to the study we are doing here.  It is only brought up to show that there can be more than one way to view “New Testament” writings and the best way is when you let scripture (Torah, Prophets and Writings) interpret them.]

Back to the main issue here, it becomes clear that the “man of sin” is connected with the “secret of lawlessness”.  What is lawlessness?  Is it not sin?  Or is it even worse than sin?  What could be worse than sin?  The promotion of sin by saying that “the law is done away with” or in other words denying the very thing that defines sin, this might be considered worse. 

Whoever commits sin trangresses also the law, for sin is the transgression of the law.       1 John 3:4

According to the Apostle John, breaking the law is sin.  But is that the same as lawlessness?  NO.  Lawlessness means “without law”.  It means that you don’t even recognize that there is a law.  The greek word which is translated in the KJV as “iniquity” is anomia.  It is Strong’s #458.  Here is what Strong’s says it means:

1) the condition of without law
1a) because ignorant of it
1b) because of violating it
2) contempt and violation of law, iniquity, wickedness

The last definition is probably the most accurate definition when you look at the context of this whole chapter in II Thessalonians: CONTEMPT AND VIOLATION OF THE LAW.

On the other hand, one who BELIEVES IN KEEPING THE LAW may still transgress it on occasion and follow that transgression up with repentance.  ONE WHO IS WITHOUT LAW OR IS IN CONTEMPT OF THE LAW SEES NO NEED TO REPENT! Therein is the difference and it is a BIG difference.

The “man of sin” sits in the temple, which is the body.  His image is there in the hearts and minds of men.  This “man” is representative of a state of lawlessness and is connected with the “secret of lawlessness”. 

A large portion of the population of the world worships as “God”, one called “Jesus” in the English language and called by many other names in other languages and cultures.  When that name is spoken, there is usually associated with it an image of a painting by Leonardo DaVinci or some other artist.  If you are honest with yourself, you know what that image looks like.  It is man with long hair and a beard usually looking up into heaven and might even have his hands together as in prayer. 

Most of the numerous divisions of what is called christianity worldwide claim that this “man/god” called “Jesus” died on a “cross” and in so doing, did away with the law.  They believe that as long as they have faith in this “man/god”, they need not worry about any old antiquated and cumbersome “law” that was only meant for “jews”.  They are in a state of being without law.  They are in fact, LAWLESS.  The secret of lawlessness, the mystery of iniquity now is exposed.  The “man” who represents this state of lawlessness in many people’s minds is none other than “Jesus Christ”. This seems to be the case even in the light of the fact that the bibles they use have quotations by the Messiah (who is purported to be “Jesus”) stating that he did not come to abolish the law and also that there are consequences for teaching others to violate even the least of the commands!

2:8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom Y’Shua shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:

The word “wicked” which is capitalized in the KJV is Strong’s # 459 anomos which if you have been reading you recognize as being almost the same word as Strong’s # 458 anomia that is translated above.  Indeed it is rendered by Strong’s as:

 1) destitute of (the Mosaic) law
1a) of the Gentiles
2) departing from the law, a violator of the law, lawless, wicked

Y’Shua will ultimately reveal and destroy this lawless anti-messiah. 

It is the speculation of this author that the “man of sin” might be physically manifested in our time.  He may even command that a physical temple be constructed on the temple mount in Jerusalem.  Or just walk onto the temple mount and make a proclamation that he is “God” and tell the world that as long as everybody worships him, there is no other law to fulfill because it was “nailed to the cross”.  The law was never nailed to a cross.  What WAS nailed was nailed to a stake and that was the accumulated penalties for the transgressions of the law (or sins).   This person will twist other writings and teachings including the very sayings of the true Master Y’Shua in order to deceive the world.

2:9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,

This “man of sin” who represents “lawlessness” will have miraculous powers.  Already we have plenty of churches that claim to do great miracles, signs and wonders.  Many try to prove to their congregations that because they perform miracles they must be genuine followers of the Messiah.  If only the members of the churches would read these words of Y’Shua and start to ask some hard questions of their teachers and pastors…alas, if only!

But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas.  Matthew 12:39

For there shall arise false messiahs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. Matthew 24:24

A large percentage of the world follows “christianity” which has the name of “Jesus” as the name of their “Christ” and their “Lord”.  It has been observed by this author that many of these worshippers of “Jesus” hate the name of Y’Shua.  They may claim that it is the same person, yet they hate the name of Y’Shua even when they find out through the obvious linguistic evidences that there is no way the true Messiah’s name could start with the letter “J”.  They insist on worshipping the name of “Jesus” and hate the name of Y’Shua.  There are a few who do wake up as this author did, and repent of calling on an obviously false name.  Just a few.  A remnant perhaps?

Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake. And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. Matthew 24:9-12

There is that word again. ANOMIA. The KJV translators insisted on rendering it as  “iniquity” because if they properly translated it as LAWLESSNESS, they might be viewed as “Judaizers”.  HEAVEN FORBID!

False prophets are everywhere. They are deceived and they deceive multitudes with their teaching of “Jesus” and LAWLESSNESS.  A false messiah with a false evangel.  We see the results of it all around us.  The love of many grows cold. 

Perhaps soon the persecution will start of those who call on the names YHWH (Yahweh) and Y’Shua.  Perhaps it will be like the Inquisition whereby men will kill believers, thinking they are doing the service of Elohim (who they call “God”).

They shall put you out of the synagogues (congregations or assemblies): yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth Elohim service. John 16:2

They are very deceived and act as the enemy of the called out ones of YHWH.  

2:10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.

They received not the love of the truth. Here is the root problem.  One must LOVE THE TRUTH and diligently seek it.  What is the truth?  There are several definitions even though a lot of people can’t quite put their finger on it.

Here are some scriptural definitions of “the truth”:

All the paths of YHWH are mercy and truth unto such as keep his covenant and his testimonies. Psalm 25:10

Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and thy law is the truth. Psalm 119:142

Thou art near, O YHWH; and all thy commandments are truth. Psalm 119:151

The preacher sought to find out acceptable words: and that which was written was upright, even words of truth. Ecclesiastes 12:10

The law of truth was in his mouth, and iniquity was not found in his lips: he walked with me in peace and equity, and did turn many away from iniquity. Malachi 2:6

Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth. John 17:17

This is by no means an exhaustive study of what truth is.  Certainly the word “truth” is mentioned in scripture in other contexts, but ultimately it comes down to this: YHWH’s word is truth.  Contained in His word is the Torah, also known as “the teachings, “the instructions”,  “the commandments”, and “the law”.

So what happens to one who does not have a love for the truth?

2:11 And for this cause YHWH shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:

2:12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

  This is a very stern warning wouldn’t you say?

  Many “christians” are taught by their pastors, (prophets, teachers, etc.), that the commandments are completely nullified.  Still others are taught that they weren’t totally nullified, but some of them were such as the keeping of the Sabbath Day.  Some are taught that the Sabbath day was changed somehow from the seventh day to the first day of the week.  Even then, those same people don’t even keep that day as a day of rest.  They leave church and go straight to meet at some restaurant with other members of their congregations and cause others to work for them.  Then they go home and mow the yard, or run down to the mall, or perhaps play a game of softball with their buddies. 

 Enjoying the pleasures of this world while practicing lawlessness is not well spoken of in this passage.  The warning should be crystal clear, however it most likely will not be to the vast majority of people who live in our current age. 

  Please don’t misunderstand; it is not my intention to judge these people.  I am only pointing out facts and presenting a possible scenario of things to come.  I have not been given the duty to judge anyone and until I have been given that job, I’ll leave it to Y’Shua.  Furthermore, it has not been shown to me that I am some sort of “prophet” who predicts things.  

 This author only seeks to inform his fellow man that he may be on the wrong course and headed for deeper rebellion and thereafter ultimately, destruction in the Lake of Fire.   Some who read this may be very sincere people and who are basically good people.  Nevertheless they are deceived into thinking the commandments of Yah are invalidated.  It is hoped that this message will awake some of you out of your slumber.  Others who read this may already know Y’Shua and already are followers of the Torah, yet have friends and family members who are held in bondage to the false teachings of lawlessness. 

  And then there are the “middle-of-the-roaders” who sometimes use the true names/titles and sometimes use the false names/titles.  Some say it really doesn’t matter as long as “he” knows what you mean.  There is basically two spirits at work here.  One is true and one is false.  One cannot attempt to call on the true by using the names of the false.  You must make up your mind… is “Jesus” the Messiah, or is Y’Shua?  How long will you be of two opinions?  You cannot serve two masters.  You will eventually end up hating one and loving the other.  Don’t be lukewarm on this very important issue! 

 I am come in my Father's name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive. John 5:43

 Receive the one who comes in the name of the Father, YHWH.  Reject whoever comes in another name! Make a conscious choice to study and learn who the real Messiah is and what His real message of good news is (the good news in part is that the majority of people will finally learn the truth someday and have a true chance to repent and walk in eternal life and that it will probably only be a minority who will refuse to repent after hearing the truth and who end up dying eternally in the Lake of Fire). 

 You may not agree with some of the speculations presented here, but at least if any of it does come to pass you will be better prepared to show others what is going on.  Remember that Y’Shua said the deception would be so strong as to deceive even the very elect if it were possible.  Is it possible to deceive the elect?  I don’t know.  I do know that it is best to be on guard at all times.

  Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: II Peter 1:10

 There must be a reason that verse was given to the elect!

 Only the Spirit of YHWH can draw a man and convict a man of sin. Maybe He will use some of these writings to do so.  It could be that some of what is speculated could actually come to pass.  One day perhaps a man will make a bold appearance as described above, coming with incredible signs and miracles and exalt himself above all that is called Elohim.  And perhaps someone who has read this study will come to their senses and repent in this age and reveal to others just what the “mystery of iniquity” is.