2 Thessalonians 2:2

To the end that (ei to). One of Paul's favourite idioms for purpose, ei to and the infinitive. Ye be not quickly shaken (mh tacew saleuqhnai uma). First aorist passive infinitive of saleuw, old verb to agitate, to cause to totter like a reed ( Matthew 11:7 ), the earth ( Hebrews 12:26 ). Usual negative mh and accusative of general reference uma with the infinitive. From your mind (apo tou noo). Ablative case of nous, mind, reason, sober sense, "from your witte" (Wyclif), to "keep their heads." Nor yet be troubled (mhde qroeisqai). Old verb qroew, to cry aloud (from qroo, clamour, tumult), to be in a state of nervous excitement (present passive infinitive, as if it were going on), "a continued state of agitation following the definite shock received (saleuqhnai)" (Milligan). Either by spirit (mhte dia pneumato). By ecstatic utterance ( 1 Thessalonians 5:10 ). The nervous fear that the coming was to be at once prohibited by mhde Paul divides into three sources by mhte, mhte, mhte. No individual claim to divine revelation (the gift of prophecy) can justify the statement. Or by word (mhte dia logou). Oral statement of a conversation with Paul (Lightfoot) to this effect as from us. An easy way to set aside Paul's first Epistle by report of a private remark from Paul. Or by epistle as from us (mhte di epistolh w di hmwn). In 1 Thessalonians 4:13-5:3 Paul had plainly said that Jesus would come as a thief in the night and had shown that the dead would not be left out in the rapture. But evidently some one claimed to have a private epistle from Paul which supported the view that Jesus was coming at once, as that the day of the Lord is now present (w oti enesthken h hmera tou kuriou). Perfect active indicative of enisthmi, old verb, to place in, but intransitive in this tense to stand in or at or near. So "is imminent" (Lightfoot). The verb is common in the papyri. In 1 Corinthians 3:22 ; Romans 8:38 we have a contrast between ta enestwta, the things present, and ta mellonta, the things future (to come). The use of w oti may be disparaging here, though that is not true in 2 Corinthians 5:19 . In the Koin it comes in the vernacular to mean simply "that" (Moulton, Proleg., p. 212), but that hardly seems the case in the N.T. (Robertson, Grammar, p. 1033). Here it means "to wit that," though "as that" or "as if" does not miss it much. Certainly it flatly denies that by conversation or by letter he had stated that the second coming was immediately at hand. "It is this misleading assertion that accounts both for the increased discouragement of the faint-hearted to encourage whom Paul writes 2 Corinthians 1:3-2:17 , and for the increased meddlesomeness of the idle brethren to warn whom Paul writes 2 Corinthians 3:1-18 " (Frame). It is enough to give one pause to note Paul's indignation over this use of his name by one of the over-zealous advocates of the view that Christ was coming at once. It is true that Paul was still alive, but, if such a "pious fraud" was so common and easily condoned as some today argue, it is difficult to explain Paul's evident anger. Moreover, Paul's words should make us hesitate to affirm that Paul definitely proclaimed the early return of Jesus. He hoped for it undoubtedly, but he did not specifically proclaim it as so many today assert and accuse him of misleading the early Christians with a false presentation.