What does the Scriptures state concerning antichrist? What is mere speculation concerning antichrist? Theories of what antichrist is supposed to do.
1. Appear during the final seven years of the Christian era.
2. Rule for 3 ½ years as a one who brings peace.
3. After 3 ½ year of peace; he will rule for 3 ½ years as a corrupt evil leader.
4. He will help the Jewish people to rebuild the temple in Jerusalem.
5. He will reinstate the Mosaic sacrificial system in the temple.
6. He will destroy the temple in the last 3 ½ years of his corrupt reign.
7. He will stop the temple sacrifices in Jerusalem in the middle of the 7 years.
8. He will cause everyone to worship him as God.
9. He will betray the Jewish people turning from them.
10. He will begin the battle of Armageddon.
11. He will persecute the “saints” during a seven year tribulation
12. He will be Satan in human form.
13. Miscellaneous other legends including 666.
None of the ideas which I have listed above can be directly supported from Scripture. Most of those ideas came from a misinterpretation of Daniel’s seventieth week as a seven year tribulation period.
There are only four actual verses in Scripture which speak directly of antichrist.
I John 2:18-19 “Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that antichrist is coming even now many antichrists have appeared; from this we know that it is the last hour. (19) They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, so that it would be shown that they all are not of us.” (NASB)
I John 2:22-23 “Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son. (23) Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father; the one who confesses the Son has the Father also.”(NASB)
I John 4:2-3 “By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, (3) and ever spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the spirit of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world.” (NASB)
2 John 7 “For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the antichrist.” (NASB)
I John 2:22 and 2 John 7: The definite article (te) appears in the Greek text and is translated in the NASB. Consequently, this is “THE” (te) antichrist. The New American Standard is a little clearer than the King James Version. In the NASB, the definite article (te) is translated “THE”. All those persons who deny Jesus are not merely “an” antichrist but are “THE” antichrist!
Furthermore, “you have heard” is not a declaration of a fact.
Who is THE (te) antichrist?
It is the last hour (John is making this declaration of HIS time.) You have heard that antichrist is coming (addressed to the believers in John’s time.) Even now (John’s time) many antichrists have appeared. They went out from us (John’s time). John used the plural pronoun “they” five times in I John 2:19
1. They went out from us, but
2. they were not really of us;
3. for if they had been of us,
4. they would have remained with us;
5. but they went out, so that it would be shown that
6. they all are not of us.
A. Antichrist is the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ.
B. The one who denies the Son does not have the Father.
C. Consequently, antichrist denies the Father and the Son.
D. Every “spirit” that does not confess Jesus is not from God and is antichrist.
E. Every "spirit" who does not confess Jesus is the spirit of antichrist.
F. You have heard that antichrist is coming but is already in the world.
G. Hence the "spirit" of antichrist existed in John’s time!
H. Many deceivers have gone out into the world.
I. Those deceivers who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh are THE deceivers and THE antichrist.
THE antichrist is anyone who denies that Jesus has come in the flesh and is the Christ.
I John 2:18 and I John 4:3 both declare ‘you have heard’. The Holy Spirit speaking through the Apostle John does not state that a specific antichrist is coming. He is declaring that “You have heard” that one is coming! Nor is the Holy Spirit declaring that “the antichrist” is coming in the future! Actually, he is using the same figure of speech, “You have heard,” to deny it.
Consequently, He is declaring, “Church you have a false doctrine. Anyone who denies that Jesus is the Christ or that He has come in the flesh is THE antichrist." Hence, “The antichrist” is already in the world during John’s time!
Pseudo-prophets utilizing numerology of Greek and Roman calendars have attempted to decode “666” found in Revelation 13:14. They announce a pope, potentate, king, conqueror or guru as “The antichrist.” The Christian’s battle is a spiritual battle! Satan is a spirit and is fighting spiritual warfare for the souls of men and women. Revelation 18:8-13.
Satan’s real officers are: Nero, Kant, Hume, Spinoza, Freud, Darwin, Voltaire, Paine, Jung, Sagan, Moon and the adherents to the New Age are antichrist. The Bible speaks of “the antichrist” because God sees each person individually. Every person who rejects God’s son Jesus and turning from him is “the” person who has rejected Jesus. Consequently, he or she is “the antichrist.”