Two reasons why we should learn about the Antichrist
So, who is the Antichrist?
The term ‘Antichrist’ originates from the Greek word ‘Antichristos’ which means: ‘opposite of Christ’ or ‘instead of Christ’.
The Antichrist figure is one of the most known figures in religious circles and the same figure has also been subject to many discussions, books, documentaries and movies. As a matter of fact, many unbelievers are aware of the existence of a figure called the Antichrist.
However, in spite of the wide awareness on the figure of the Antichrist, many people still don’t believe in the concept of the Antichrist. In some circles , the Antichrist would be given equal consideration to Santa Claus. There are even certain church goers who don’t believe that the Antichrist is a figure worth discussing.
In view to respond to the above question, this is what the Bible says:
The Antichrist will be a person and a leader
-The Antichrist will be a man. It will not be a woman. According 2 Thessalonians 2:3, the Antichrist is or will be a man. In the mentioned Bible verse , he is described as the man of lawlessness. It will not be a demon or an alien, it will be a male human being.
What will be the characteristics of the Antichrist?
-He will come with signs and wonders. As the Bible states in 2 Thessalonians 2:9-10:
"The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie."
-He will oppose everything that is called God and He will proclaim himself to be God.
As 2 Thessalonians 2:4 states: “ He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.
It is then logical that he will require worship from the world.
Is it important to know about the Antichrist?
I heard many Christians claim that it is a useless task to learn about the antichrist because Christians will be out of this world by the time he appears. I totally disagree with that view for two reasons:
Firstly, encouraging people to ignore teachings related to the Antichrist is total selfishness. If the Antichrist was a figure to ignore, then the apostles and ancient teachers of the church would not have bothered to write or teach about him. Though they have not seen the Antichrist, they teached about him and warned us about him. A person who encourages Christians to ignore teachings about the Antichrist is a selfish person. Even if some of us will not see the Antichrist (because of a death preceding his arrival), we still have to prepare the next generations by warning them about the antichrist.
Secondly, the Bible never said that the rapture will occur before the arrival of the Antichrist. In 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4, Paul wrote:
‘Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers and sisters, not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by the teaching allegedly from us—whether by a prophecy or by word of mouth or by letter—asserting that the day of the Lord has already come.Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction. He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.’
The above passage clearly states that the rapture will come after the arrival of the Antichrist. If the Apostles and ancient leaders of the church did not recognize the importance of learning about the Antichrist, then they would have left any subjects related to the Antichrist out of the Bible. Yet, they left the subject in the Bible because they knew that a generation of Christians would end up facing the Antichrist. The early church teachers wanted us to be ready spiritually, mentally and physically when the Antichrist arrives.
Learning about the Antichrist gives us an opportunity to be ready and strengthen our faith before his arrival. Unfortunately many Christians will be caught by surprise because they would have been taught that the rapture would come before the Antichrist.
The Apostle Paul encourages us to remain aware of the devil’s schemes so that he will not outwit us (ref. 2 Corinthians 2:11). The antichrist will be a scheme or a device of Satan. By acting unaware and ignorant of the devil’ schemes and devices, certain Christians will set themselves up to be outwitted by Satan.
Therefore, let us remain aware.