2 Thessalonians 2:6

And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.

Holding Back the Divine

The intersection of divine intervention, human agency, and biological instincts presents a fascinating topic that finds a unique intersection in 2 Thessalonians 2:6, “And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.” This passage, rich in eschatological significance, invites us to explore the concept of divine withholding – the deliberate act of God to conceal knowledge or delay revelations, even from His chosen prophets, until the appointed time. This exploration leads us to understand how our biological responses, such as fear and the fight-or-flight mechanism, are intricately woven into the fulfilment of divine prophecy and God’s sovereign plan.

Divine Withholding in Biblical Narratives

The Bible presents numerous instances where God withholds information or delays revealing His plan to His prophets and chosen people, underscoring the principle that God reveals knowledge in His time for His purposes. For instance, in Daniel 12:4, the angel instructs Daniel to “shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end.” This act of sealing knowledge illustrates that certain divine revelations are reserved for specific times within God’s redemptive timeline.

Similarly, in Acts 1:7, Jesus tells His disciples, “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority.” This statement emphasizes that the knowledge of God’s timetable is reserved for God alone, and it is not for humans to ascertain the full scope of divine plans prematurely.

Human Agency and Biological Responses

The human biological response to fear and the fight-or-flight mechanism is a fascinating lens through which we can understand our interactions with the divine and the world around us. This innate response system, involving our endocrine system and hormones like dopamine, prepares our bodies to face threats or challenges. It is deterministic in a sense, guiding our actions when confronted with obstacles.

From a theological perspective, one could argue that God, in His omniscience, has designed these biological systems not only for our survival but as a means through which He can direct human actions and decisions within the grand narrative of His sovereign plan. Just as God can withhold knowledge until the appointed time, He can also utilize our biological responses to guide the unfolding of prophetic events.

The Antichrist and Divine Orchestration

The concept of “what withholdeth” in 2 Thessalonians 2:6 can be seen as part of a divine orchestration, where God controls the timing and the revelation of the Antichrist’s emergence. The idea that the Antichrist’s actions and the global circumstances that trigger these actions are all within God’s control is intriguing. It suggests that everything from the beginning of creation has been set in motion according to God’s plan, including the rise of the Antichrist.

This perspective posits that our nervous system responses, directed by God, play a role in the fulfillment of prophecy. Just as God withholds knowledge until the right time, He also orchestrates the biological and environmental conditions that will lead to the necessary actions by individuals in the prophetic timeline, including the Antichrist. This does not negate human agency but rather integrates it into the broader divine purpose, where even our most instinctual reactions can serve the unfolding of God’s plan.


In 2 Thessalonians 2:6, we find a profound intersection of divine withholding, human agency, and biological instinct. This passage challenges us to consider how God’s sovereignty over knowledge, time, and human actions interplays with our understanding of prophecy and divine will. It invites us to trust in God’s timing, recognizing that He has orchestrated all things – from our most basic biological responses to the grand narrative of history – to fulfill His ultimate purpose. As we navigate our journey, we do so with the understanding that our lives are part of a much larger divine plan, meticulously laid out from the start of creation.