Paul describes the Holy Spirit in one occasion as “The Restrainer.” He is speaking specifically about the end times when the Restrainer will be taken away to allow lawlessness to pervade society and give rise to the Antichrist (the lawless one).
7For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way.
2 Thessalonians 2:7
As with so many things in scripture, there will be a literal fulfillment to what Paul prophesied, but as he also says, the secret power of lawlessness was already at work then. As with the Antichrist, there will be one big bad guy at the end of the age, but there have been and will be many more to come before he is revealed. The Holy Spirit has been removed temporarily and in part from many societies throughout history.
What we are witnessing here in America this week is the secret power of lawlessness at work, where the Restrainer has been ever so slightly removed. It is no coincidence in the spiritual world what has happened this week. We watched as our FBI director claimed on TV that a presidential candidate clearly broke federal law, but wouldn’t be prosecuted because “it wasn’t her intent.” That was clearly not how the law was written or intended to be construed and the message was clear. This woman was untouchable. The law didn’t apply.
This same lawlessness has spilled over into our streets with needless bloodshed and despicable violence. Two black men killed at the hands of cops in two different places sparked outrage nationwide which resulted in five cops being slaughtered last night in Dallas as fed up black men take retribution into their own hands.
I cannot blame any black person in this nation for their outrage. Since Ferguson, it has been clear that black men and women want vindication for what they know has been going on behind the scenes, mostly unreported, for years. Their disappointment that systemic abuse of power wasn’t righted in one specific case continues to bleed into the streets, quite literally.
We cannot separate the lawlessness that happens in the halls of power from what takes place in the streets of our nation, and we must not mistake the origin of both, for they are the same. The secret power of lawlessness is at work in our nation, and the Restrainer is being removed.
We stand at a critical hour today. Will we run to the Holy Spirit and ask for His immediate return and reign over our nation, or will we ask that we have more time to fix things on our own in the way we see fit?
This is the hour for the church to pray. This is a divine moment for God’s people to respond and seek the One who restrains lawlessness. Will you pray? Will you mobilize your church? Your Sunday School? Your home group? Your coworkers?
The Lord showed me many years ago that this will continue to get worse if we don’t pray. I believe we can seek Him for a reversal of course through prayer, but as with Abram and Sodom, what will that number be? Will God relent for 10 believers praying? 100? 10,000?
I don’t know the answer, but I do know that if we mobilize to pray, we can change the destiny that America is currently headed toward.
Will you pray for America with your church tomorrow?