Chapter 19: 2 Thessalonians 1:1–2:3

New Testament Video Guide, (2001), 18–19


Purpose

To encourage students to listen to the Lord’s authorized servants to understand the doctrine of the Second Coming.

Before the Video

Scripture Activity

Many of the Thessalonian Saints misunderstood Paul’s teachings in his first letter to them concerning the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Read 1 Thessalonians 4:13–17 and ask students how these verses might have been misunderstood. Explain that many of the Thessalonian Saints quit working and became idle because they thought the Second Coming was going to take place very soon. Because of this misunderstanding Paul sent a second letter to the Thessalonians. Read 2 Thessalonians 1 with your students and have them find what Paul wrote to correct misunderstandings about the Second Coming. Have them also find what he wrote to comfort those Saints who were being persecuted because of their belief in Jesus Christ.

Scripture Insight

Read 2 Thessalonians 2:1–3 with your students and help them understand the following points Paul made about the Second Coming:

  • “Be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled” (v. 2): Do not be concerned about the false things you hear. Tell students that the Joseph Smith Translation reads, “. . . or be troubled by letter, except ye receive it from us” (italics added). Paul encouraged the Saints to listen only to those who had authority.

  • “Let no man deceive you” (v. 3): There are those who teach false doctrines about the Second Coming.

  • “Except there come a falling away first” (v. 3): There would be an Apostasy from the true Church before the Second Coming.

Using the Video

The Second Coming 4:51

Activity

Explain to your students that they will hear three modern-day case studies regarding the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Ask them to be ready to explain how they would handle each situation.

Case Study 1

A boy in your seminary class has expressed concern with the things he has heard about the Second Coming and the end of the world. He wants to know if there is enough time left for him to plan on a mission and a college education. He is worried that he will not have the opportunity to marry and have children. Ask students to briefly explain what they would say to this boy.

Show Segment 1

Segment 1 (1:22) is an excerpt from a talk given by Elder Boyd K. Packer (in Conference Report, Apr. 1989, 72; or Ensign, May 1989, 59).

Discussion

Help students understand that there is time to prepare for a long life, and that feelings of fear do not come from God. Be careful that students do not misinterpret Elder Packer’s remarks and think that they do not need to prepare for the Second Coming now.

Case Study 2

A friend tells you she attended a fireside where the speaker told about a dream he had concerning the Second Coming. In the dream he was told to teach the Saints things they must do in order to be ready for the Lord when He comes again. Your friend does not know if she should do what this man said or not. Ask students to briefly explain what they might say to this girl.

Show Segment 2

Segment 2 (1:54) is an excerpt from a talk given by Elder Boyd K. Packer (in Conference Report, Sep.–Oct. 1989, 17; or Ensign, Nov. 1989, 14–15).

Discussion

Help students understand the following principles:

  1. 1.

    Unless individuals are set apart to a presiding office in the Church, they will not receive revelations concerning what others should do.

  2. 2.

    The process of sustaining Church leaders helps us know who has been called and given authority to serve and teach.

  3. 3.

    Unusual spiritual experiences should be kept to oneself and not regarded as a call to direct others.

Case Study 3

Your sister comes home concerned about what she heard her Sunday School teacher say. Her teacher said that the signs of the Second Coming were almost all fulfilled and that great catastrophes were coming. The teacher also said that if Church members do not get their food storage now it will be too late. What would you say to your frightened sister?

Show Segment 3

Segment 3 (1:35) is an excerpt from a talk given by Elder Neal A. Maxwell (in Conference Report, Apr. 1988, 6–8; or Ensign, May 1988, 7–9).

Discussion

Help students understand the following points:

  1. 1.

    Not all of the signs of the Second Coming have been fulfilled.

  2. 2.

    Church members should watch for signs of the Second Coming but should not become preoccupied with them.

  3. 3.

    We should quietly and righteously go about our lives.