Sunday, December 2, 2018

The Antichrist

Ever since the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ people down through the ages have wondered who this Antichrist might be. The following refers to the signs of the times and the end of the age: 

Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of your coming, and of the end of the age?” And Jesus answered and said to them: “Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. 
“Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another. Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. But he who endures to the end shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come. (Matthew 24: 3-14)

Jesus made it clear to the apostles that there would be many antichrists. Here John says, "Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour. They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us. 
(1John 2:18-19) 

John is referring to false teachers preaching heresy that abound in every society but he also alludes to a specific person as Antichrist which has left believers open to a lot of curiosity and speculation as to who this individual might be and exactly when they will appear.

History has already shown us one type of the last days antichrist in the person of Antiochus Epiphanes, a Greek tyrant of the 2nd century B.C. He was a vicious enemy of the Jewish people, outlawing Judaism and desecrating the sacred temple with pig blood and setting up idols to be worshipped while considering himself Deus Ad Dominum.
However Jesus made the timing quite clear when he said, "Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake." Jesus is referring to The Great Tribulation of the church and of all believers. Here it is referred to again to John on the Isle of Patmos where he was given a look at events that were yet to come.

When He opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held. And they cried with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, until You judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” Then a white robe was given to each of them; and it was said to them that they should rest a little while longer, until both the number of their fellow servants and their brethren, who would be killed as they were, was completed.
(Revelation 6:9-11)

Recent news indicates that the murder of Christians and Jews has increased exponentially over the last few years with the advent of the "Arab 
Spring." The predominantly Islamic nations have been raging against those they refer to as "The People Of The Book," referring to those who believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, specifically Jews and Christians. 

By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world. (1John 4:2-3) 

Rather than wonder who is the antichrist we need to consider what is the antichrist and recognize that these verses indicate antichrist is a spirit which is manifested in human beings who deny God and His Christ. The god of the Islamic world is a demonic entity of darkness, hatred, death, that disavows the One True God and His son Jesus Christ, whereas the God of Christians and Jews is a God of light, love and life. Here we have clearly identified the Antichrist of the last days that precede the second coming of Jesus Christ. We can conclude that antichrist is an attitude emanating from an evil spirit.

"After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, saying, "Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!" All the angels stood around the throne and the elders and the four living creatures, and fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, saying, "Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom, thanksgiving and honor and power and might, be to our God forever and ever Amen." Then one of the elders answered, saying to me, “Who are these arrayed in white robes, and where did they come from?” and I said to him, “Sir, you know.” So he said to me, “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. (Revelation 7:9-14)

There are teachers who insist that believers won't suffer in spite of these scripture verses, and that they will be miraculously raptured out of the way, however this is inconsistent with bible history. One need only ask themselves if believers today are somehow special and more deserving of escaping the sufferings of early Christians who were sawn in two, burned at the stake, eaten by lions, crucified and murdered in droves as they have been down through the ages for their faith.

God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers through the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us through His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world (Hebrews 1:1-2) 
Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image" (Genesis 1:26)

Time to consider where you stand, with God or the Antichrist? Ask Jesus (Yeshua) who is Co-Creator of the universe with the father to come into your life as Lord and Savior.

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