The Katechon Restrainer: Who is He?
One of the most baffling problems in the New Testament and in eschatology is the identity of the “restrainer” in 2 Thessalonians 2:6–7. Verse 6 has the neuter participle τὸ κατέχον (“what restrains”) and verse 7 has the masculine participle ὁ κατέχων (“he who restrains”). More than a dozen views have been proposed.-Powell, C. E. (1997). The Identity of the “Restrainer” in 2 Thessalonians 2:6–7. Bibliotheca Sacra, 154, 320.
Unfortunately for us, the author does not explain many aspects of the knowledge he shared with the Thessalonians. For that reason v. 6 remains quite opaque to us as observers of their conversation. To what is Paul referring to when he speaks of that which is holding him back and the one who now holds it back (v. 7)? This Gordian knot has been nearly impossible to cut!-Green, G. L. (2002). The Letters to the Thessalonians (p. 314). Grand Rapids, MI; Leicester, England: W.B. Eerdmans Pub.; Apollos.
Like a Bible riddle (Judges 14:11-14), “the mind capable of logical inference (i.e., wisdom)” is required to solve it (Rev. 13:18; 17:9). The key to identifying the Restrainer is identifying the “mystery of lawlessness” it restrains, that was “already at work” (2 Thess. 2:7) inspiring rebellion against God’s truth among the Thessalonians, via “spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us.” (2 Thess. 2:1-2 NKJ)
Spiritism had inspired so much false prophecy Thessalonians were beginning to “despise” all prophecy (1 Thess. 5:20). The apostle John saw the same events occur in congregations he pastored. So many “antichrists” rose up it reminded John of the end time “hour” during which the Antichrist arrives:
Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour.
19 They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us. (1 Jn. 2:18-19 NKJ)
The “mystery of lawlessness” is the opposite of the “mystery of godliness” (1 Tim. 3:16), “sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth” (2 Thess. 2:13 NKJ).
Therefore, the “mystery” or “secret power” inspiring heresy and apostasy is spiritism.
God “sends” the deluding “energy of spiritism”(2 Thess. 2:11) when He “takes out of their way the decree” (cp. Col. 2:14) that has prevented Satan and his angels from fully manifesting themselves on the earth.
Symbolically, the Star fell (4098 πίπτω) from heaven (Rev. 9:1) when God removed the restraint keeping it aloft. This resulted in its free-fall to the earth, releasing spiritism in two distinct events:
Demons held captive in the abyss are released:
1 And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit.
2 And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit.
3 And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth: and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power. (Rev. 9:1-3 KJV)
[That these locusts are demons is implied by their vagueness, being “ghostly” John can only describe what they “look like” Rev. 9:7-10 and by their king being Satan, “Destruction” Rev. 9:11 cp 2 Thess. 2:3 “son of destruction (684 ἀπώλεια)”; Job 26:6; 28:22 LXX.]
The Angel Michael casts Satan and his angels (Nephilim) out of heaven and woe to the earth for they appear visibly to creation as they did in the Days of Noah.
7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,
8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.
9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
10 And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.
11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.
12 Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time. (Rev. 12:7-12 KJV)
When the decree of God restraining spiritism is lifted, the end time manifestation is just as it was in the Days of Noah (Luke 17:26 cp. Mat. 24:29, 37).
Therefore, the Katechon is God the Holy Spirit. Only He could restrain the reappearance of the Nephilim on the earth, and release the demonic captives in the Abyss.
Context confirms this, the “secret power of lawlessness” is opposite of the “secret power of godliness”, God the Holy Spirit inspiring Sanctification in God’s Holy Word of Truth:
But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth, (2 Thess. 2:13 NKJ)
Notice how Paul contrasted those inspired by spiritism who did not love the truth, and those inspired by the genuine Holy Spirit who are sanctified by the Holy Spirit via God’s Word of truth (John 17:17). They are in juxtaposition, polar opposites opposed to each other:
9 The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders,
10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
11 And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie,
12 that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
13 But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth,
14 to which He called you by our gospel, for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. (2 Thess. 2:9-14 NKJ)
In the end time many who believed themselves “Christian prophets” will hail the miracle working Adonikam as “The Christ”. Then when the “Elohiym” [Nephilim Fallen Ones] arrive at mid-week, the charismatic “Man who condones Sin” morphs into the Big Mouth Beast, the Son of Perdition Antichrist, and the false prophets follow to their everlasting destruction.
On judgment Day these will beg Christ for Mercy claiming they knew Him:
22 “Many will say to Me in that day,`Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’
23 “And then I will declare to them,`I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’ (Matt. 7:22-23 NKJ)
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