Prophecy Series-Message #5

by Gary "Gabe" Hulin

The Antichrist - Who is He?

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse

Who is this Antichrist?

Who is this coming world ruler who will use every manner of lying deceit, craft, and the powers of Satan to gain a stranglehold on the affairs of this world? Who is this man portrayed in God's Word as an oratorical master politician, ruthless, treacherous, bloody, and who comes upon the world scene deceitfully with "Peace" for the Middle East.

The sure word of God reveals that Russia will, in the latter days, this generation, come upon Israel after they are established in their own nation — at a time when peace seems to, at last, be possible for the Jews who have endured thousands of years of persecution. The results of the coming Mideast war could very well set the stage for the Antichrist. He is no doubt on the world scene now, and may not even be aware that Satan will be entering his body and mind for the purpose of putting this world under Satan's total subjection.

We should realize here that the Antichrist will not be revealed to the world in general until after the rapture of true Christians, that is, until the time when Christ returns to remove his church from the earth. This should not be confused with his second Advent which occurs at the end of the tribulation. The "rapture" occurs prior to the terrible days of tribulation upon earth brought about by both the actions of the Antichrist himself and as the result of God's wrath upon unbelieving man. This is important, because as evil as the world is now it will continue to worsen even as the Holy Spirit, who resides in the lives of Christians, is no longer on the earth to restrain the influence of Satan. The Holy Spirit is referred to by the Apostle Paul as the "Restrainer" of sin in these verses: "And you know what is restraining him [the Antichrist] so that he [the Antichrist] may be revealed in his time. For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He[the Holy Spirit] who now restrains will do so until He [the Holy Spirit] is out of the way [the rapture]. And then shall the lawless one be revealed,..." (2 Thess. 2:6-8)

This tells us that the Holy Spirit, who resides in the lives of believers has restrained Satan from being able to run unhindered in this world. Granted, he is everywhere, pulling at us from every direction, tempting and confusing us; however, the Word of Christians, with the power given them by the Holy Spirit is able, for the time being, to keep him from totally deceiving the world — that is until the Holy Spirit is removed at the rapture. God's Wisdom is revealed in all of his Word whether it is instruction on how to live our lives righteously, the gospel of the good news that Christ is in us, or his revelation concerning prophecy. As I have mentioned before, God has provided us a general framework of the events of the end time for our use in understanding. The attached chart is intended to help understand relationships between the various events important to our studies. The Word in Daniel relates to God's wisdom when it says "None of the wicked shall understand but the wise shall understand" (Daniel 12:10)

We should keep in mind that those who study his word and ask for understanding may well be able to recognize the Antichrist on the world scene before the rapture occurs, because God has described in great detail this "man of sin". He exhorts us to "study and watch" the events of the end time.

Character of the Antichrist

Let's first begin to see the character of this Antichrist. God's Word reveals that he will be a great negotiator, capable of influencing people of power. He will be an electrifying speaker, much like Hitler in that respect. Hitler was a type of Antichrist himself who was capable of influencing millions of people to take out their frustrations upon the Jewish people. The Antichrist no doubt will be much more infamous than Hitler. The Antichrist will be, perhaps, the most gifted man ever known from the world's point of view. Add to this the power and great authority of Satan and you may just begin to picture his abilities. The following verses from scripture reveal much of his character:

"...a King of bold countenance, one who understands riddles shall arise... (Dan. 8:23)

This denotes a shrewdness and intelligence that demands attention and skill in intrigues. "...and he shall think to change times and the law""... (Dan. 7:25)"Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any God; for he shall magnify himself above all."

The Antichrist will place himself above all other people, and claim deity. He will not regard the God of his Jewish fathers, nor the Messiah (Christ), of whom it was the great desire of Jewish women to give birth to him.

His Appearance

In appearance the Antichrist is described as one "whose look is more stout than his fellows"(Dan. 7:20) He is also referred to as the "king of fierce countenance".(Dan. 8:23) With his grand use of speech and his acts and words he will attract multitudes of adoring worshiping followers (Rev. 13:2-4) Daniel 7:24 reveals him as a military genius. Revelation 13:4 describes him as the end time "beast":

"Men worshiped the dragon (Satan), for he had given his authority to the beast, (Antichrist) and then worshiped the beast, saying "who is like the beast, who can make war with it?"

Politics of the Antichrist

The Antichrist will be a crafty politician of unusual wiliness: "By his cunning he shall make deceit prosper under his hand, and in his own mind he shall magnify himself." (Dan. 8:25)

The Ultimate Goal of the Antichrist

The Antichrist is revaled as a person who seeks to not only be the world's dictator, for he has a far more sinister plan: He will exalt himself as God. Daniel gives us further insight into his plans of declaring deity:

"And the king shall do according to his will: he shall exalt himself and magnify himself above every God, and shall speak astonishing things against the God of Gods...he shall give no heed to the God of his fathers...He shall not give heed to any other God, for he shall magnify himself above all. He shall honor the God of forces (Satan) instead of these; a God of whom his fathers did not know shall he honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. He shall deal with the strongest fortresses with the help of a foreign God. (Dan. 11:36-39).

The Antichrist is further described as "the man of lawlessness", and "the son of perdition" (2 Thess. 2:3).

The Spirit of Antichrist and the One World Philosophy

The antichrist will be revealed to the world after the rapture of the church. However, he may be recognized by those who study God's Word prior to that. He is described as intelligent, crafty, deceitful, and powerful both physically and militarily with a strong personal magnetism and appeal. He will have Satan's authority to back him up. It should be fairly easy to see that the world is nearly ready to accept him. This "Spirit of Antichrist" concerns conditions and movements in the world which will pave the way for his world dominion. The acceptance of humanism as THE world view is indeed the philosophy behind his rise to power politically. Humanism is most instrumental in preconditioning mankind to accept him. Humanism invades the minds of people thru television, music, our school systems, newspapers, entertainment and virtually every aspect of our society. (Please refer to Message #10 A New World Order in a New Age)

There are other forces at work which confuse and distort and war against the plan of God. These movements seek to bring in damnable heresies which distort right and wrong, cause confusion and lead many to despair, and, thus, cause many to become vulnerable to Satan's attacks. One such movement is false religion and the occult.

The False Religious System

The Antichrist will use the "False Prophet" and religious deception (Please refer to Message #8 Mystery Babylon - The Mother of Harlots) to gain power over those remaining on earth after the rapture of the church (Rev. 13:11-17). This false prophet will have power to do miracles in the sight of the Antichrist. In the Book of Revelation, John describes the false prophet as "a second beast":

"Then I saw another beast which came up out of the earth. It had two horns, like a lambs horns, and it spoke like a dragon (Satan). It uses the vast authority of the first beast (the Antichrist) in it's presence. It forced the earth and all that live on it to worship the first beast,...this second beast performed great miracles; it made fire come down to earth in the sight of everyone. And it deceived all the people living on earth by means of the miracles which he was allowed to perform in the presence of the first beast."

The Second Beast of Revelation

This should be a warning to us that not all miracles are from God. Just as some phychics and seers may have some sort of power, beware the power that is behind them! The false prophet, capable of doing miracles in the presence of the Antichrist, will also be the head of the end-time false religious system. False religions prepare the way for the antichrist by it's adherence to two major forms of anti-christianity:
1) Paganism and Idolatry. These can readily be turned into the worship of the beast. Idols can be in the form of anything you put in the place of God-, one's car, one's stereo, or one's job, for example. Idolatry is the result of our materialistic worship.
2) Apostasy and Heresy. Apostasy prepares people to accept the Antichrist by denying faith in Christ and taking away from the Truth of God's Word. Heresy, on the other hand, corrupt's God's Word by adding to it. Both Apostasy and Heresy is becoming more and more prevalent even among traditionally biblically sound churches. This is that end-time church forming which John spoke of in Revelation. (Please refer to Message #8 Mystery Babylon - The Mother of Harlots)

These religious "errors" help to foster that "Spirit of Antichrist" that precedes his appearing on the world scene. The World Council of Churches pushes it's agenda to combine all "religions" into one world religion. This is no doubt the forming of the one world religious system spoken of by John in Revelation Chapter 17. This system will aide the rise of the Antichrist. The false prophet will head this religious system and will direct it's followers and their political power to the Antichrist. The false prophet will also be responsible for all people receiving the "Mark of the Beast" in their right hand or in their forehead so that "no one can buy nor sell unless he has the mark..." (Rev. 13:7). This is a result of the economic power the antichrist assumes in the last 3 ½ years of the time of this age.

The Word of God explains that many "antichrists" will appear before the antichrist appears: "For many deceivers are entered into the world, that confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist." (2 John 7)

The Political Alignment of Nations

Another force preparing the world for the Antichrist is the power behind the political alignment of the nations. (Please refer to Message #6 Daniel's Vision of the Rise and Fall of the Great World Empires)

God has revealed in considerable detail the rise and fall of the great empires, through his prophet Daniel, from Babylon to Rome and Rome again. The last world empire spoken of in Daniel's Vision focuses on the 10 nation confederacy at the end time over which the Antichrist will assume power. Many believe that this is the now forming European Union, the revised Roman Empire of the last days. The Antichrist is described in Daniel Chapter 7 as "the little horn", which will arise from among them. This litlle horn will actually be an eleventh nation to arise from among them in this same area. The Antichrist will use it's military might to subdue three of the original ten nations and begin his rise to political power. The time of the end of this age draws near.

Shortly the "Rapture" will occur leaving on this earth only those who have not accepted Christ to face the abuse of the Antichrist and the wrath of God on an ungodly world during the seven years of Tribulation. This tribulation period is not where we will want to be, for it is a period such as there has never before been like it.

There are many movements that are preparing the way for the antichrist. The immorality and injustice that encompasses many lives around us surely must set the stage for his soon appearance to "answer the world's problems". For the first time in history, a worldwide movement with all the diabolical characteristics of the predicted Antichrist government has appeared on the earth. It is open and frankly anti-christian in all it's message. It's politics and economics are those of the great "beast" of the prophecies of scripture. Yet, Despite this, life goes on as usual, and a great many people are hardened to the truth and unbelieving even in the very face of it.

The only way of avoiding this darkest of man's days on earth is to accept Jesus Christ as your Savior. You should consider it now. The rapture of the church is imminent. Any day could be the last as we know it.

The Fate of Antichrist

We know the fate of Antichrist and the False Prophet as revealed in Thess. 2:8. It will be swift and final by the divine power of God: "And the Lord Jesus will slay him by the breath of His mouth and destroy him by the brightness of His coming." (Thess. 2:8)"And I saw the beast (Antichrist) and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against Him (Christ) that sat upon the horse, and against His army (saints). And the beast was taken and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast and them that worshiped his image. These were both cast into the lake of fire burning with brimstone."(Rev. 19:19-20)

The Antichrist will be cast into the lake of fire along with the false prophet

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ghulin@comcast.net
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