Who is the Antichrist?
Who is the Antichrist?
From the days of the first Christians to today's believers, this question has fascinated millions through the centuries.
And rightly so, the Antichrist is an intriguing figure.
Some say he doesn't exist, that there's no scriptural evidence. While others describe him as the human incarnation of Satan.
So who is the Antichrist? Is he a real figure? Is he alive today? And if so, how will the world recognize him?
Fortunately, the Bible provides us with answers to all these questions and more.
The Antichrist in the Bible
Who is the Antichrist according to the Bible?
While some people claim the Bible never refers to an individual as the "Antichrist," but rather the existence of "a spirit of Antichrist," a complete picture of this infamous man emerges from a thorough reading of the scriptures.
In fact, the Antichrist is referenced throughout the Bible as a man of many names...
As the above verses and many others attest, the Antichrist is a very real person.
During the final seven year period before the Glorious Appearing of Jesus Christ, the Antichrist will achieve unprecedented global power:
The reach and power of the Antichrist will extend to the farthest corners of the earth. In fact, his dominion will be so extensive, not a single person will be able to buy or sell without his permission:
The Antichrist will use his position of authority to persecute Christians and Jews:
Not only will the Antichrist assault God's holy people, but he'll even dare to raise his hand against Jesus Christ:
This final act of rebellion will be the Antichrist's ultimate undoing.
Characteristics of the Antichrist
Any attempt to answer the question, "Who is the Antichrist?" requires an in-depth examination of the man's characteristics as outlined in the bible. By studying these characteristics, those who are alive on earth during the end times will be able to recognize the Antichrist.
Here are just a few of his characteristics:
Nationality / Race
According to the bible, the Antichrist will come from among a distinct race of people:
The armies that destroyed the city and the Temple in A.D. 70 were Roman armies. This means the Antichrist will arise from among the Roman and/or Italian people.
Whether or not he's of Italian ethnicity is a subject of ongoing debate. But regardless, the bible is clear. The Antichrist will come from among the people who destroyed the Temple.
Arrogance / Hubris
The Antichrist will also be a man of unrivaled arrogance:
He will believe his great boasts, thinking himself to be greater than God Himself:
Powered by Satan
In addition, the Antichrist will be a man of unprecedented power, not of his own accord, but because he is backed by Satan:
Because of the power given to him by Satan, the Antichrist will be able to deceive many people with false signs and miracles:
Unfortunately, these deceived people will follow the Antichrist, believing his power to be that of God and not Satan. Nevertheless, the bible reveals that the Antichrist derives his power from Lucifer:
Worships a God of Fortresses
The Antichrist will also worship a god his forefathers never knew - a brand new god of fortresses:
To understand who the Antichrist is, we need to understand that he's a man of unrivaled arrogance and inflated self-worth, who believes himself to be greater than anyone else who has ever lived.
He's also an idolater who worships "a god of fortresses," which in all likelihood represents his enormous military power.
Speculations About Who is the Antichrist
So now that we know who the Antichrist is, can we identify him today?
According to Paul, the Antichrist will not be known until there is a great rebellion in which the Antichrist enters the Temple of God in Jerusalem and exalts himself above every object of worship:
Since that event (the abomination of desolation) has yet to happen, we can say with confidence that the man of lawlessness has not yet been revealed, and we can not identify the Antichrist today.
Nevertheless, that's never stopped people from speculating about the Antichrist's identity.
Here's a list, by no means exhaustive, of people throughout history who have been rumored to be the Antichrist:
Most of these people can be definitely be ruled out as the Antichrist since they lived long ago and have since died. The remaining candidates are all but certain to prove undeserving of the ominous title given Paul's statement in regard to when the man of lawlessness will be revealed.
However, this list does serve a valuable purpose. It vividly illustrates the pitfalls associated with singling someone out as the Antichrist before the appointed time.
Is the Antichrist Alive Today?
When studying the biblical prophecies of the Antichrist, many inevitably ask the question, "Is the Antichrist alive today?"
The best answer is, "we don't know for sure."
However, given the lateness of the hour, it's highly probable the Antichrist is alive today.
As Paul stated, we will only know for sure when the Antichrist enters the Temple and commits the abomination of desolation:
This can not happen until the Jewish Temple is rebuilt in Jerusalem, and in all probability, this will happen soon.
Less than a century ago, Israel did not exist.
Then, one day in 1948, Israel became a nation.
Less than twenty years later, Israel regained control over Jerusalem.
In due time, Israel will rebuild the Temple in that same City.
How can I be so sure? Because God's Word demands it.
And since Jesus stated that the generation which witnesses these things will not pass before His Glorious Appearing, in all likelihood, the Antichrist is alive today.
Why Does It Matter?
Why bother asking "who is the Antichrist?"
One reason is because the appearance of the Antichrist precedes the Glorious Appearing of Jesus Christ and the establishment of God's Millennial Kingdom. And the rapture precedes all of these events.
Being watchful in regard to these events lends an element of urgency to God's Word.
If we live each day as though Christ can return at any moment, then we are inspired to live Godly lives:
While a Christian's primary focus should always be Jesus Christ, the study of the Antichrist and end times bible prophecy in general serves a valuable purpose. Those who believe Christ can come for His church at any moment remain alert and prepared, prompting them to holy living on a daily basis.
As Paul reveals, a special crown awaits those who eagerly await Christ's return:
So who is the Antichrist?
The Antichrist is a man of unrivaled arrogance who will ascend to the pinnacle of wordly power in the end times. He will boast of his greatness, place himself above God, and persecute God's people.
Ultimately, he will rally a godless world to wage war against Jesus Christ Himself:
However, the gathering at Armageddon marks the end for the Antichrist and his allies:
When the Antichrist comes to Armageddon, he will face the wrath of Jesus Christ. Christ will strip the Antichrist of all power and completely destroy his godless world government:
In the end, despite his acquisition of power undreamed of by dictators past, the destiny of the Antichrist is the eternal lake of fire:
Ultimately, it's nowhere near as important to ask "Who is the Antichrist?" as it is to ask "Who is Jesus Christ?"
Because it doesn't do any good to know the answer to the former if you don't know the answer to the latter. If you want to avoid sharing in the Antichrist's eternal punishment, make sure you develop and cultivate your relationship with the Lord of lords, Jesus Christ.
Britt Gillette is the founder of End Times Bible Prophecy and the author of Coming To Jesus and Signs Of The Second Coming. Receive his book 7 Signs of the End Times for FREE when you sign up for his monthly newsletter.
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