2 Thessalonians 2:7 - το γαρ μυστηριον ηδη ενεργειται της ανομιας μονον ο κατεχων αρτι εως εκ μεσου γενηται
https://bit.ly/3hotJlJ Greek Interlinear
Ultimately regardless of what it is, God’s Holy Spirit will be involved. Even if it is something else, the Holy Spirit will be the likely influencer for God the Father to give it such power and also to pull it back. There may be autonomy to something else given. But even if it were given autonomy, it would have “no power” without the Spirits influence no doubt.
In the Greek, as expressed in some versions too, there is no “He” in 2:6 or 7. And “one” in English has a few meanings. It can mean single. That one. Or it can indicate an entity or person as sanctified or separated out for a purpose. He is “the one.” In that sentence it does not mean 1, but chosen. Or it could read: “…only there is one [entity, presence. thing. something, protector] restraining .
Were the two witnesses around during Paul’s time? I think they were:
11 Then I said to him, “What are these two olive trees on the right of the lampstand and on its left?” 12 And I responded the second time and said to him, “What are the two olive [f]branches which are beside the two golden pipes, which empty the golden oil from themselves?” 13 So he answered me, saying, “Do you not know what these are?” And I said, “No, my lord.” 14 Then he said, “These are the two [g]anointed ones, who are standing by the Lord of the whole earth.”
4 These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of the earth.
You know what is cool about that (4:11 / 11:4)? Besides being a mirror image it implies the two witnesses were stationed 500 years before Paul…and certainly still there at the time of Paul.
I know this not a certain answer, that the two witnesses are the restrainer. But beyond the NIV when we start to look at actual conceptual meanings behind the words used (which is what translations do), we see that a case can be made for the two witnesses. At least as candidates.
To arrive at the Holy Spirit because He is the only one existing at the time of Paul is a good reason. But He’s not the only one. On that note, Michael was too. I don’t think it is Michael. But I don’t think Daniel 12:1 disproves it though. In some ways…that is “your commentary,” no?
Just some things to think about. Those that wrote commentaries many thought they were doing the same as you suggest (many of them). They can’t all be correct though. Would love your further take when you have a chance brother. Blessings.
PS–Got Questions.org agrees with your take. At least part of it. To me it is not so clear that “one” specifies “a” person. But it is something masculine. I could see it work for the two witnesses…this would require deeper Greek text discovery for accuracy…at least that would be helpful here. But what could be going on too is that in 2:6 = 2 witnesses and in 2:7 perhaps it is the Holy Spirit as “sponsor of them.” Like i said, ultimately it will be His power one way or another.
Not sure if you consider it as Got Questions does as the church. In that, are they not doing the same thing I suggest here? But if it is the church…then who is the “man of lawlessness” being revealed to? The world won’t know who he is until he demands worship. Not when he is making a deal with Israel. The only way that would mean “reveal” is if the church is still here for that. I am pretrib rapture…but i’m good with hanging out that long at least that long