"Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him (The Rapture), 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 Christ is at hand (The Second Coming). 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 Tribulation); who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God (the abomination of desolation). Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things? And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only He (the Holy Spirit) who now letteth will let, until He be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming: even him (the antichrist), whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders" (2 Thes. 2:1-9).
As I mentioned earlier, the Apostle Paul wrote to reassure the Thessalonicans that they had not missed the event about which he wrote in his first epistle (1 Thes. 4:13 - 5:11). He had written that the Rapture of the Church would happen prior to "the great and the terrible day of the LORD" (Joel 2:31). If they believed that the next event to take place was Christ's Second Coming, they obviously had misunderstood. The sequence of events would be: 1. The Rapture (Jn. 14:1-6; 1 Cor. 15:50-54; 1 Thes. 4:13-18; 2 Thes. 2:1; Rev. 4; etc.); 2. The Tribulation during which the antichrist would be revealed (Dan. 9:27; Matt. 24:15; 2 Thes. 2:3-8; Rev. 13:1-8; etc.); 3. The Second Coming of Christ, or the "day of the LORD" (Dan. 2:34-35, 44; Joel 2:31; Matt. 24:29-31; Acts 1:11; 1 Thes. 1:10; 5:2; etc.).
The 2 Thessalonians 2:1-9 quote above also tells us a great deal about the antichrist.
**He is the "man of sin," and he is the "son of perdition" (v. 3).
**He is "anti" in that he opposes, he exalts himself above God, and he sits in the temple claiming to be God (v. 4).
**He is being restrained and his identity is hidden (v. 6).
**At the appointed time, he will be revealed, and Christ will destroy him when He returns (v. 8).
**He gets his power from Satan (v. 9).
Tomorrow, if He allows, I would like to look at the antichrist as he is revealed in the Book of Revelation.