2 Thessalonians, chapter 2
1 We ask you, brothers, with regard to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our assembling with him,
2 not to be shaken out of your minds suddenly, or to be alarmed either by a “spirit,” or by an oral statement, or by a letter allegedly from us to the effect that the day of the Lord is at hand.
3 Let no one deceive you in any way. For unless the apostasy comes first and the lawless one is revealed, the one doomed to perdition,
4 who opposes and exalts himself above every so-called god and object of worship, so as to seat himself in the temple of God, claiming that he is a god -
5 do you not recall that while I was still with you I told you these things?
6 And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his time.
7 For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work. But the one who restrains is to do so only for the present, until he is removed from the scene.
8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord (Jesus) will kill with the breath of his mouth and render powerless by the manifestation of his coming,
9 the one whose coming springs from the power of Satan in every mighty deed and in signs and wonders that lie,
10 and in every wicked deceit for those who are perishing because they have not accepted the love of truth so that they may be saved.
11 Therefore, God is sending them a deceiving power so that they may believe the lie,
12 that all who have not believed the truth but have approved wrongdoing may be condemned.
13 But we ought to give thanks to God for you always, brothers loved by the Lord, because God chose you as the firstfruits for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in truth.
14 To this end he has (also) called you through our gospel to possess the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Basically, Mormons take verse 7 and go, “Oh, so the apostasy is already at hand!” Yet that’s not what Paul is saying. In the first verse, Paul addresses an issue among the Thessalonians, namely, that a false prophet has come among them spreading lies about the imminent Second Coming. He reminds them what he instructed them about an apostosy and Antichrist proceeding the Second Coming, as indicated in the fifth verse, and goes through the instruction again: how a great apostasy must proceed the Antichrist, how the Antichrist will deceive many and spread wickedness, how God will permit wicked men to worship the Antichrist, how when Christ comes He will defeat the Antichrist, and that Christ calls everyone to share in His glory. He reassures the Thessalonians that the apostosy has not yet come, that the mystery of wickedness is not the apostasy, and so the Second Coming isn’t imminent as they were tricked to believed. In verse fifteen, after telling them that they are called to share in Jesus’ glory, he tells them to hold fast to what the Apostles taught them so that they can have a share in the coming glory.