Is the Holy Spirit the Restrainer?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Tom Butler, Jan 3, 2009.

  1. Tom Butler

    Tom Butler
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    Rather than intrude into the debate in the thread Pre-Trib Rapture: Biblical Truth or Dispensational Fiction, I want to discuss (actually ask some questions) about the Dispy view that the Restrainer in II Thessalonians 2:7 (him who letteth) is the Holy Spirit.

    As I understand it, the Dispy view is that when the rapture occurs, and the church is taken out, the Holy Spirit, who indwells all believers (The "Church) is taken out with it.

    This gives rise to my questions:

    Who is the one who takes the Holy Spirit out of the way? The verse says he who restrains is taken out of the way. To be taken, there as to be a taker. Who takes God the Sovereign, Omnipotent Holy Spirit out of the way? Can't the Holy Spirit take himself out of the way?

    Does the view I have stated mean that the HS is confined to believers? Isn't he everywhere? Certainly he indwells believers today. But don't we also speak of the Holy Spirit being with us? Do we not talk about the Holy Spirit being present in our worship services.

    We, as the Bible does, speak of people being filled with the Holy Spirit, even though he is already in us.

    We even pray for God to pour out the Holy Spirit on (fill in the blank--me, us, our church, our nation, pour out revival on a people.

    Did not Jesus liken the Holy Spirit with the wind, which goes where it wants to?

    Another question: If believers are raptured into the presence of God, and the Son who sits at his right hand, is there a further need for the indwelling at that point?

    I am curious who the Restrainer is. I've seen one view that it is Michael the Archangel; another that it is the church which restains Satan, although it didn't seem to restrain Hitler and Stalin.

    But I'm more interested in the answers to my questions about the Holy Spirit as the Restrainer. There seem to be some inconsistencies and I can't make them fit.
     
    #1 Tom Butler, Jan 3, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 3, 2009
  2. saturneptune

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    No doubt the Holy Spirit does as He wills. Maybe another question can either make things clearer or more confused. When the Holy Spirit came in the Book of Acts, Who brought Him here? To be brought, there has to be a Bringer. Couldn't the Holy Spirit bring Himself?

    Maybe the Holy Spirit has a general presence, and a presence in each individual believer in a personal and unique way.

    He is always in us. We speak of being filled with the Holy Spirit when He makes His presence known to us in a more intense way according to His will.

    If every Christian was pursuing a Holy walk with Jesus to learn something everyday, this would not be necessary. The idea of acting as a local body like a collection of knots on a log for six months to a year, then asking for an instant fix because of apathy and laziness is not a Biblical concept, but is popular today. Have you ever heard of recharging my battery on Wednesday? Why? Our battery should always be at full charge.

    yes

    No
    The Restrainer is the will and purpose of God.

    Give me a break. Can't make it fit. Pleaseeeeeeeeeeeeee. Clever trap but no cigar.

    By the way, on this doctrine, I am still learning. I thought I was a dispy, but now very unsure.
     
  3. Jim1999

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    If you claim ignorance on this passage 2 Thes 2:7ff you will join a great host of Bible expoistors, theologians and me. It is the most difficult passage of Paul's writings, even Peter was baffled (2 Peter 3:16).

    It is the Scofield Reference Bible which profers the Holy Spirit as the Restrainer......Most reliable commentators rather circumvent this passage.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  4. Jim1999

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    By the way, many commentators list the laws of the land as the restrainer..they give their reasons, but I can't write them all at this moment.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  5. Marcia

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    These are just my thoughts on it - not a theological treatise. I posted this on another thread -- the Holy Spirit as the indweller of believers is removed if all believers are removed. Having the Holy Spirit present outside people is different from having the Holy Spirit indwelling people. In other words, if suddenly all believers died at the same time, the Holy Spirit would be present because He's omnipresent, but He would not be present the way He is through believers. There is a difference.

    One passage says Jesus raised himself and another says the Spirit raised him and another says that God raised him. So God can remove the Holy Spirit, but it's the same as the Holy Spirit removing himself.

    No. The passage says that those born of the Spirit are like the wind.
     
  6. Amy.G

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    If we pretend that the 1000 years that Satan is bound is not during the MK, but during the church age (now) :), then the restrainer could be the angel that had the key to the bottomless pit and bound Satan for 1000 years.



    Rev 20:1 And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.
    Rev 20:2 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,
    Rev 20:3 And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.
     
  7. Jim1999

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    In keeping with the whole thought of interpreting the book of Revelation, we must see the binding of Satan as being God fully controlling Satan. This is how the church is able to function. The binding is a relative binding and not seclusionism. John is just affirming God's control in Rev 20, 1-4, if I remember correctly.

    This is the only place a millennium is mentioned and one must be careful about numbers. 1000 is a long number and may not be a literal 1000 years,,,,,,just a long time, leading up to the return of Christ, a general resurrection and judgement, including Satan.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  8. Palatka51

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    Just as Jesus gave permission for Judas to do what he had to do so does the Holy Spirit give permission for Satan to bring in the Great Tribulation.

    Just as God had created the Earth He had to give nature permission to destroy the world with water. The Creator removed Himself for creation to bring chaos.

    God let creation wreck havoc on the Earth.

    Jesus let Judas set up His betrayal.

    The Holy Spirit will let Satan try His Church that is lukewarm and very worldly.

    Each of the God head stepped aside (removes themselves from interference) as Satan works. Neither is totally removed but are observing. Much the same occurred with God's permission for Satan to inflict Job. He removed the hedge of protection. When the work is finished God always put an end to the Satanic activity.

    He told Noah to leave the ark.

    He set Job's life back in order.

    He raised Jesus from the dead.

    He will resurrect His Church and meet Him in the air as He returns to put a stop to Satan's final work.
     
    #8 Palatka51, Jan 3, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 3, 2009
  9. Amy.G

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    Which means that Satan is being restrained (or bound) like Rev 20 says.
     
  10. Jim1999

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    As I said earlier, if the great expositors of all time are reluctant when it comes to this passage, who am I but a peasant in interpretation. I shall leave definitive ideas to others.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  11. Amy.G

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    I agree Jim, but it's an interesting topic. (As long as we behave ourselves. :))
     
  12. Jim1999

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    Agree, Amy, but you won't hear many sermons on that text, except from some dispensationalists with their Scofield Reference Bible open.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  13. Marcia

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    You know, there are Dispensationalists who do not use a Scofield Bible!
     
  14. Jim1999

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    I did specify those with their Scofield Bible open. I have been around the block a few times.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  15. Tom Butler

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    lI have a dispy relative who uses the Ryrie Study Bible. He doesn't use his Schofield any more--he wore it to tatters.
     
  16. Palatka51

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    That restraint is during the 1000 year kingdom reign. Satan is not restrained at this time. He is being held back, as it were. Much like it was with Job. Satan was free to come and go but hindered by God's protection of Job. Until God basically said, ok, just don't kill him.
     
  17. Amy.G

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    What is the difference between being restrained and being held back? Sounds like the same thing to me. If Satan wasn't being restrained, the gospel would have been stopped 2000 years ago.
     
  18. Tom Butler

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    My take on John 3:8 is that the "thou" which cannot hear the sound of the wind or tell where it comes from, is likened to one who is born of the Spirit. We who are born of the Spirit will remember that suddenly it was there. We didn't hear it coming, we don't know where it came from. Regeneration is a sovereign act of the Holy Spirit.

    Thanks for your take on the indwelling Spirit and the omnipresence of the Spirit. I'm still listening.
     
  19. Palatka51

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    Restrained is being unable to influence any human events. Paul tells us that he is as a roaming lion seeking whom he might devour. That is not being restrained but selective of the unprotected.
     
  20. Allan

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    Uh... No. Satan is not bound at present.

    Notice what the scripture in Rev 20:3 states about this binding and what it accomplishes.
    That doesn't square with Amil.
    Here we have satan no longer upon the earth but has been removed from it.
    The fact that he is no longer here allows for the 'nations' to no longer be decieved.
    That is until the 1000 years should be fulfilled. This word fulfilled (in the Greek - teleĊ) literally means to be completed or to come to an end. This timing is not (as some incorrectly presume) figuritive but a specific amount of years.

    Now here are some questions.
    1. Are the nations still being decieved?

    2. If they are - does this not establish that Satan is still amoungst us.

    3. And according to the verse you quoted - doesn't this mean Satan is not bound as is presumed by some?


    Please note that this binding of Satan has a specific effect and purpose. That the 'nations' will no longer be decieved.
    Yet we find Paul telling believers:
     
    #20 Allan, Jan 3, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 3, 2009

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