Antichrist—Another name for the world ruler of the tribulation (1 John 2:22; Mark 13:22). He’s, a.k.a., the ‘little horn’ (Daniel 7:7-8), the ‘desolator’ (Daniel 9:27), the man of sin (2 Thessalonians 2:9), the (First) Beast (Revelation 13:1-8), and the second member of the Satanic trinity (Revelation 12, 13) formed during the tribulation time. The earth-dwellers during the tribulation will need his name or number on their wrist or forehead (a conspicuous place) to conduct business. At the midpoint of the tribulation, he desecrates the Jewish temple when he enters it, enthrones himself in it (2 Thessalonians 2:4), and demands worship as God.
The Antichrist in Daniel’s Visions
An angel sent by God gave Daniel a vision of four successive world empires. The fourth was of an iron kingdom, which history showed was Rome. Out of that historical kingdom, another will appear in the future. Its roots are in that Roman kingdom, and it’ll be a federation of ten nations, represented in the vision as ten horns (horns symbolic of political power)
“After this I saw in the visions at night a fourth beast…. And it was different from all the beasts (empires) that were before it, and it had ten horns…. There came up among them another little horn before whom three of the first horns were plucked up by the roots. And there, in this horn, were eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things” (Daniel 7:7-8).”
The World Ruler
During the seven-year tribulation, the ‘little horn’ is the ‘world ruler’ (Antichrist). He will conquer three nations by force to bring them into his alliance. Though he’s a man, he’s boastful and arrogant, and openly speaks about his eminence.
The Peace Treaty
This Antichrist makes a peace treaty with Israel. That signing marks the beginning of Daniel’s seventieth week (week of seven years), the tribulation. But at the midpoint of the tribulation, he breaks the treaty by entering the temple, stopping the ongoing worship of God, and demanding worship:
“And he shall make a firm covenant with many for one week. But in the middle of the week (after 3.5 years), he shall cause the sacrifice and the offering to cease. And on the wing of abominations shall come one who makes desolate (Antichrist), until the decreed destruction is poured out on the desolator” (Daniel 9:27).
Daniel sees the desolator’s ultimate destruction in his vision, but that isn’t until Jesus returns at the end of the tribulation.
The Antichrist in Jesus’ Olivet Discourse
On His way to the cross, Jesus taught His disciples several lessons about humility and the dangers of pride (Mark 8:34-10:45). In a tone-deaf response, Jesus’ disciples praised the outward beauty of Herod’s temple. Jesus answered by foretelling that the Romans would destroy the temple, not leaving one stone upon another. They knew the temple was prominent in end-time events (Zechariah 6:12-13; Malachi 3:1), so they asked Him:
“Tell us, when will these things happen, and what will be the sign when all these things will be fulfilled?” (Mark 13:4).
Jesus warned them to pay attention because false christs would also be center stage:
“For false christs and false prophets will rise and show signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. But take heed. I have told you all things beforehand” (Mark 13:22-23).
The Antichrist in the Apostle Paul’s Letters
Church Age Believers are Saved from Wrath
Paul wrote letters to the Thessalonians and spent time teaching them about end-time events. They were confused about the timing of the rapture and the tribulation. Paul had taught them the horrors of the tribulation but also that Jesus would rapture them as believers before the week began:
“Wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead—Jesus, who delivered us from the wrath to come” (1 Thessalonians 1:10).
He’s not yet Revealed
But false teachers had come in and told them they had missed the rapture and were in ‘that day” (of tribulation). Paul told them how to know they weren’t in that Day:
“Do not let anyone deceive you in any way. For that Day will not come unless a falling away (the rapture) comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or is worshipped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself as God” (2 Thessalonians 2:3-4).
They’d know who the Antichrist was if they were in the tribulation. Since they didn’t, they weren’t in that time (we can know in the same way).
Paul chides them for their error, saying,
“Do you not remember that I told you these things when I was still with you?”
Paul continues by saying that the Holy Spirit is restraining the ‘mystery of lawlessness.’ The Holy Spirit, who indwells each member of the Church, will go back to heaven along with the Church when Jesus raptures the Church (2 Thessalonians 2:6-7).
“Then the lawless one (Antichrist) will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth, and destroy with the brightness of His presence, even him, whose coming is in accordance with the working of Satan with all power and signs and false wonders” (2 Thessalonians 2:8-9).
God says He’ll “send them (unbelievers) a strong delusion, that they should believe the lie” (2 Thessalonians 2:3-11). The lie is believing in the Antichrist and taking his mark.
The Antichrist in the Revelation
“I stood on the sand of the sea. And I saw a beast rising out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, with ten crowns on his horns, and blasphemous names on his heads. They worshipped the dragon who gave authority to the beast. And they worshipped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast? Who is able to wage war with him?”
He’s One of Satan’s Recruits
In Revelation, we’re introduced to Satan’s recruits. Since he’s unable to defeat God’s people (Revelation 12:15-16), he enlists the help of two men called “Beasts” (Revelation 13). He creates an unholy trinity to imitate the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
• Satan imitates the Father.
• The First Beast (Antichrist), the Son. and
• The Second Beast (a.k.a., the False Prophet), the Holy Spirit.
From a short-term perspective, they accomplish several goals:
• Satan and the Beast receive worship from earth dwellers (13:3-4). Receiving worship is one of Satan’s primary goals. He even sought it from Jesus during Jesus’ temptation (Matthew 4:8-9).
• They verbally assault heaven itself: “He opened his mouth to … blaspheme His (God’s) name and His tabernacle and those who dwell in heaven” (13:6).
• The Antichrist made war against and conquered the saints (13:7).
• God allowed him to rule over every tribe, people, language, and nation for forty-two months (from the midpoint of the tribulation until Jesus returns).
• All who live on the earth will worship Antichrist, everyone whose name has not been written since the foundation of the world in the book of Life belonging to the Lamb who was killed (13:6-8).
How Believers Conquer
So, knowing Antichrist’s authority, what does God expect from His people (Rev 13:10)?
God assures His believers that He will avenge the evils persecutors commit against them. He even asks His people not to resist:
“He who is to be taken captive, into captivity he shall go; he who kills with the sword, with the sword he must be killed.”
This is part of conquering, as Peter found out when Jesus was arrested:
“Then Jesus said to him, “Put your sword back in its place. For all those who take up the sword will perish by the sword” (Matthew 26:52).
The Beast rising out of the sea is the first Beast. In Bible imagery, anything ‘rising out of the sea’ was a threat. We met him in 12:3-4 where he also had seven heads, ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads, according to Daniel 7:7-8.
“The ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise; and another shall rise after them, and he shall be different from the first, and he shall subdue three kings” (Daniel 7:24).
The Connection with Daniel’s Vision
John, the author of Revelation, ensures we connect this Beast (Antichrist) with the Beast in Daniel’s vision (Daniel 7:1-8):
“The beast which I saw was like a leopard … a bear, and … a lion. The dragon gave him his power and his throne and great authority” (Revelation 13:2).
His Fatal Wound
Then John witnessed something new:
“I saw one of his (Antichrist’s) heads as if it was mortally wounded, but his deadly wound was healed, and the whole world marveled and followed the beast” (Revelation 13:2-3).
What dies and revives? A person? A nation? John doesn’t tell us.
In the Old Testament, people sometimes asked, “Who is like Yahweh” (e.g., Exodus 15:11). Here, the deluded earth dwellers ask, “Who is like The Beast,” showing they think he’s God. The Beast also claims, for himself, that he is god (the messiah).
Who is like Him?
Ironically, the name Michael means “Who is like God,” and he’s the angel who defeats Satan and casts him out of heaven. When the vision has earth dwellers asking, “Who is able to wage war with him?” implying the answer is “no one.” God begs to differ.
It was granted to him to wage war with the saints and to overcome them (13:7). God allows Antichrist, empowered by Satan, to persecute His people for the rest of the tribulation. Sometimes God protects His people from the effects of His judgments, but not always. Even during this Church Age, when God’s wrath isn’t poured out, believers in Jesus die from persecution.
His Helper: The Second Beast
“He exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence and causes the earth and those who dwell on it to worship the first beast” (Revelation 13:12).
He’s the enforcer. In hockey, he’d be the fighter who protects the star player. In Britain, he’d be the head of the Queen’s guard.
The False Prophet gives life to the image of Antichrist, so it speaks, and he slays those who don’t worship the image (13:14-15).
The Number of the Beast
“Here is a call for wisdom: Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast. It is the number of a man. His number is six hundred and sixty-six” (Revelation 13:18).
• Circa 539 BC, Daniel prophesied about Antiochus 4, who would desecrate the temple in 167 BC, and he is a type of the future desolator during Daniel’s 70th week.
• Both Antiochus and Antichrist boast remarkable things, including that they are god himself.
• The Antichrist is the world ruler of the tribulation.
• In His Olivet Discourse, Jesus warned that false messiahs will be prominent in the end times.
• The Apostle Paul taught that:
1. The restrainer (the Holy Spirit) is blocking the appearance of the Antichrist.
2. Believers aren’t in the tribulation and haven’t missed the rapture if the Antichrist’s identity is unknown.
3. Satan will empower the Antichrist.
• The Beast in Revelation is the same person Daniel saw in his visions.
• One of his ‘heads’ will receive a mortal wound yet revive.
• He will demand that earth dwellers worship him and receive his mark.
• He will persecute and overcome the saints.
• The Second Beast, the False Prophet, is the Antichrist’s enforcer.
You can be saved from all of this by believing in the Name of Jesus. Please watch the video on this page fro more about this GREAT NEWS FOR YOU!