The Antichrist is a deceiver and I personally believe he is n the world “right now!” The term “Antichrist” is used four times by John in the Books of 1 John and 2 John. The real person has thirty-eight titles and names that he is given in Scripture: Little horn, beast, man of sin, lawless one and more.
Antichrist and Anti mean two things: It means to oppose and it means to replace. This is exactly what the Antichrist desires to do in the world today; oppose the work of Jesus Christ and to replace Jesus Christ in our lives.
He also has a two-fold strategy: how he attacks us and how he attacks the world. The first part of his strategy is an outpouring of spiritual deception to incite the world to rebel against God. This is happening right now. It is an end-times apostasy from the truth and an outpouring of deception.
The Book of 1 Thessalonians mentions Jesus’ return in every chapter but unfortunately when the church of Thessalonica received this first letter many were convinced Jesus had already come. They thought they had been left behind and the tribulation had started. So Paul wrote 2 Thessalonians three or four weeks after the letter of 1 Thessalonians.
So in this next text, we are going to read where Paul is trying to comfort them and let them know Jesus had not returned:
2 Thessalonians 2:1 – Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, (Verse 2) not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come.
(Verse 3) Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, (Verse 4) who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.
(Verse 5) Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things? (Verse 6) And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time. (Verse 7) For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way (The Holy Spirit).
(Verse 8) And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. (Verse 9) The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders,
(Verse 10) and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. (Verse 11) And for this reason, God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, (Verse 12) that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
What we are seeing today is a moral freefall! In the last twenty years, everything has changed! We also see a total mass rebellion against God and against the morality of God.
We see in verse seven that the rapture takes place because it says that the “lawless one” will be revealed when He, the Holy Spirit, is taken away. So to answer the question of “Who is the Antichrist,” Christians will not know because we won’t be here. Oh yes, we already see his spirit in the world today doing a tremendous amount of damage, but what actually takes place during his reign on earth we won’t know.
Timeline of End-Time Events
Number one: A growing rejection of God’s Word and rebellion to biblical morality. This has already happened. Number two: The spreading of the gospel by the Chruch as the Holy Spirit in the church restrains the work of Satan in the world.
Have you ever in your life-time heard of people that name themselves another gender other than the one they were born with? The assault on biblical morality has blown up in the last twenty or thirty years. People are putting “unknown” in the space on a birth certificate under gender. The parents are saying they want their child to name their gender. This is literally insane and they know it. Parents should be godly guides, not agents of cofusion!
You cannot reason with these people who think like this. We can pray for them is all. They have listened to the devil for too long and believe his lies. And they will continue to do so unless something wakes them up.
Now for the third thing that is going to happen at the end-timeline: The rapture of the Church in an instant of time. Here is Jesus’ description of the rapture:
Luke 17:26 – “And as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man: (Vere 27) “They ate, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all. (Verse 28) “Likewise as it was also in the days of Lot: They ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built;
(Verse 29) “but on the day that Lot went out of Sodom, it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all. (Verse 30) “Even so will it be in the day when the Son of Man is revealed. (Verse 31) In that day, he who is on the housetop, and his goods are in the house, let him not come down to take them away. And likewise, the one who is n the field, let him not turn back.
(Verse 32) “Remember Lot’s wife. (Verse 33) “Whoever seeks to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it. (Verse 34) “I tell you, in that night there will be two men in one bed: the one will be taken and the other will be left.
(Verse 35) “Two women will be grinding together; the one will be taken and the other left. (Verse 36) “Two men will be in the field: the one will be taken and the other left.”
(Verse 37) And they answered and said to Him, “Where, Lord?” So He said to them, “Whenever the body is, there the eagles will be gathered together.”
Just as it was in the days of Noah and Lot, so it shall be when Jesus returns. There are people who don’t give any of this any thought. Every day is “business as usual.”
But for those of you who think believers are going to go through the seven years of tribulation: It will not be a time of getting married and giving in marriage: as Jesus just told us in Luke, that all happened before it starts. Those seven years are destruction, plagues, and over half of the population dies.
The true believers will not be here – read the Bible! If we read and know God’s word, no one could ever believe that God’s people have to live through seven years of hell on earth.
1 Thessalonians 1:10 – and to wait for His Son from heaven whom He raised from the dead, even Jesus who “delivers us from the wrath to come.” Plain as day, right there – believers are gone!
1 Thessalonians 5:9 – For God did not appoint us to wrath but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, (Verse 10) who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with Him.
Luke 21:36 – “Watch therefore and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.”
Jesus is telling us to pray that we might escape these things to come. If it wasn’t achievable, why then would Jesus tell us to pray? Jesus also tells us to comfort one another with these words. How could you comfort someone by telling them they are going to go through the Great Tribulation? You can’t!
Revelation 6:15 – And the kings of the earth, the great men, the rich men, the commanders, the might men, every slave and every free man, hid themselves in caves and in the rocks of the mountains, (Verse 16) and said to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! (Verse 17) “For the great day of His wrath has come, and who is able to stand?”
So what is the “wrath of the Lamb?” For over two thousand years, Jesus has been offering His forgiveness and grace, and for over two thousand years He has been mocked, spit on in the face, cursed, abused, rejected and yet has given more grace. The Lamb of God who took away the sins of the world has been nothing but loving ever since He died and rose again!
But on the day that the Church is raptured, it all changes. The Lamb who is the king of glory will pour out His wrath on this earth and the people will know its Him! The Bible says they will seek death, but will not find it.
The Bible also says that the rapture will happen in a “twinkling of an eye.” That’s not enough time to repent! When the disciples asked, “Where, ” Jesus told them the body will be where the eagles are – “caught up in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air!” Jesus knows who belongs to Him. If a person doesn’t know Christ and they are living during the rapture, they will go through that horrible last seven years on this earth.
Now after the rapture, the fourth thing that is going to happen: The Antichrist is revealed to the world and they worship him. The last seven years are broken into two halves. The first three and one-half years are the rise of the Antichrist and then the “abomination of desolation” takes place. What that means is there is a rebuilt temple on the temple mount in Israel, according to Daniel, Matthew, 2 Thessalonians2, and according to Revelation 13. The Antichrist enters that temple and proclaims himself God. That begins the last three and one-half years which is called “The Great Tribulation!
However, there will be people getting saved during this tribulation period but the beast is given the power to overcome them (Revelation 13:7)
And the fifth thing that is going to happen: The Second Coming of Christ! The rapture took place before all this and the world doesn’t see it but feels the effects afterward. There will be billions here one second and gone the next and no one that is left will know what happened to them.
At the end of the tribulation, according to Revelation 19, we return with Jesus, after the marriage supper of the Lamb which is taking place in heaven, and we will have a “ring-side-seat when Jesus defeats the beast and the false prophet. Then Jesus sets up His one-thousand-year reign.
How close do you think we are to this right now? Here are a few things that are taking place right now: There is an outpouring of spiritual deception to incite the world to rebel against God and His word. There also is a major seduction of God’s people to adapt to the culture we live in.
Proverbs 10:22 – The blessing of the Lord makes one rich, and He adds no sorrow with it.
1 Timothy 6:10 – For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrow.
No matter how much someone has, they should stay humble and never stop trusting and leaning on our Perfect Father!