final clause in 2 thess 2:6

From: Paul Dixon - Ladd Hill Bible Church (
Date: Thu Jun 06 1996 - 11:34:14 EDT

The typical interpretation of the telic or final clause in 2 Thess 2:6
(eis to ...) relates the clause back to the more distant to katechon
(what restrains). The subsequent meaning becomes something like this:
you know what now restrains him so that he may be revealed in his own
time, that is, you know what is restraining the man of lawlessness from
being revealed before his time.

This interpretation ignores the fact that normally a telic or final
clause refers back to its nearest antecedent, which in this case is not
to katechon, but oidate (you know). If we relate it to its nearest
antecedent, then the meaning changes drastically: and what restrains (or
holds sway) you know so that he may be revealed in his time. The idea
then becomes a fortiori, i.e., their present knowledge of what was
restraining - that is, the mystery of lawlessness (v. 7) - was the
guarantee that when the epitome of lawlessness was revealed (the man of
lawlessness) then they would certainly know him.

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