History reveals many antichrists
History reveals many antichrists and in our first study we saw that there were four main historical characters that all teach us something about the final Antichrist to come. We know from the character of these four men what the final Antichrist will be like. He will be a flatterer and deceiver, a politician, a great military leader with a global army surpassing anything in history. We also know that he will invade Jerusalem, persecute the saints and desecrate the temple mount in Jerusalem ushering in the ‘Time of Jacob’s Trouble’ that will last for three and a half years and culminate in the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. History itself also reveals many other antichrists and whenever you see someone wanting to be deified in some way or to be worshipped you have an antichrist. In fact the meaning of the word “antichrist” has a double meaning in the Greek language of the New Testament. Firstly it means, “Against Christ” and secondly, “in place of Christ.” The word “Christ” means “the anointed one.” In other words the Antichrist will be against Christ, seek to replace Christ and have a false anointing. He will in fact hate Christ and do everything in his power to stamp out Biblical Christianity and Judaism.
Today in the professing Christian Church there are countless numbers of so called “prophets” and “apostles” who have a false anointing. The word “Christ” means “Messiah” “anointed” or “the anointed one.” False Christs are those with a false anointing. They may have spiritual power but its source is Satan and not God’s. If Satan masquerades as an angel of light then his servants also masquerade as servants of light. As scripture says; “For such men are false apostles, deceitful workers, masquerading as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, if his servants masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their actions.” (2 Corinthians 11:13-15)
The Antichrist will be one who will proclaim himself to be God and like Judas Iscariot he will be personally indwelt by Satan himself. Both Judas and the man of sin are called “the son of perdition.” Of course Judas also teaches us about the character of the Antichrist to come. There have been other characters in history that have all been antichrists and we will look at some of them now. In one-way or another they all sought deification and the worship of men.
Many false Messiahs.
In the Jewish encyclopaedia there are over forty men listed who have come to the Jewish nation proclaiming themselves to Israel’s Messiah. One famous man we have already mentioned in our previous study was Bar-Kochba (120-132AD) who with the support of the Rabbis and the majority of the Jewish nation led a revolt against Rome. The revolt failed and the Romans massacred multitudes of Jewish people and sacked Jerusalem itself. Today in Israel the current thinking of many Jewish people is that the Messiah will give them back the temple. Of course they are still waiting for their Messiah even though He has already come. Today there is a movement among the Torah minded Jewish people in Israel to rebuild the Temple. They are called, “The Temple Mount Faithful Movement.” Their intention is to establish the temple sacrifices again according to the Law of Moses. It may well be that the Jewish people will rebuild the temple under the banner of a peace agreement with the nations. Isaiah mentions this covenant of peace but calls it “a covenant of death.” This peace treaty would be unique in that it would even allow the Jewish people to rebuild the temple or at least to inaugurate the temple sacrifices again on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.
The day will come when Israel will have recovered from war and the Jews from many nations will have once more settled in the Land and are at peace. Israel will become a land of unwalled villages, a peaceful and unsuspecting people living without walls gates and bars. At that time when they are living this way they will suddenly be attacked. This is seen in Ezekiel chapters 38-39 when the armies of Gog from the Land of Magog suddenly attack Israel without warning. When the peace accord Israel has made with nations is broken and Israel abandoned the Antichrist will come bringing with him the final abomination of desolation thus desecrating the Temple Mount.
Aiding and abetting the Antichrist
Of course we have seen the European Union with the support of the United States under the previous Obama Administration, the United Nations and Russia who tried to establish a middle-east peace and enforce the “Two-State” solution from Hell. The time will come when Israel will actually enter a time of peace. Possibly we will see a manifestation of Psalm 83 describing a war between Israel and its immediate Muslim neighbours resulting in a complete victory for Israel. This victory in itself could lead to Israel becoming economically and militarily very powerful among the nations. At this time they would be able to enter into a time of peace with the nations. Even though the Jewish nation wins the Psalm 83 war they will not have defeated Islam itself. Islam will rise again and those nations that make the final attack on Israel will all be Islamic ones. However, there will be other nations with them as well. The Islamic nations are actually listed in Ezekiel chapter 38. Islam’s agenda is to see a global empire ruled over by a supreme “Caliph” or “‘Mahdi.” Right now Erdogan of Turkey is the most likely candidate for the revived Caliphate of the Turkish Ottoman Empire. Ultimately a man will stand on the temple mount to proclaim himself God and look out all who do not submit to his rule! Islam itself means “Submission.”
Even though the Jewish encyclopaedia lists over forty false Messiah’s it seems right now that Israel’s leaders will do anything or receive anyone to feel secure even if it means selling out to the devil himself so to speak! However, it also needs to be said that in Israel today there are faithful Jewish people who love the Torah and want to see the Judaism of Moses take its centrality once again in Israel. Already there is a large movement among religious Jews to see the temple rebuilt and the sacrificial system re-instated according to the Law of Moses as taught in the Bible. Yet the tragedy of this is that any sacrifices offered on the Temple Mount to atone for Israel’s sin will in reality be an abomination as it was for almost 40 years after Jesus had died and risen again. In 70 AD the Romans finally put an end to the sacrificial system thus fulfilling the prophecies of Daniel and the Lord Jesus Himself. The Judaism practiced today is not the Judaism of the Torah or that which was given by Moses. As we have already mentioned what happened in 70AD will happen again at the end of this present age.
A stern faced king, a master of intrigue
If the Antichrist at first seeks to embrace the Jewish people then most of the Jewish nation including its leaders will go along with his agenda however, like Antiochus he will show his true colours, vent his anger on the Jewish people and desecrate the Temple Mount. Antiochus did this and so will the Antichrist! Daniel records these events; “In the latter part of their reign, when rebels have become completely wicked, a stern-faced king, a master of intrigue, will arise. He will become very strong, but not by his own power. He will cause astounding devastation and will succeed in whatever he does. He will destroy the mighty men and the holy people. He will cause deceit to prosper, and he will consider himself superior. When they feel secure, he will destroy many and take his stand against the Prince of princes. Yet he will be destroyed, but not by human power.” (Dan 8:23-25) In its past historical fulfilment this referred to Antiochus, however, in its ultimate prophetic fulfilment it is a reference to the Antichrist who will come in the character of Antiochus.
A ‘time leap’
When you look at Daniel chapter 11:1-35 we see the historical reference to Antiochus but from Verse 36 onwards we see that Daniel does a “time leap.” He begins speaking about Antiochus but in verse 36 telescopes into the future to speak about the Antichrist himself. When the peace agreement with Israel is broken by the nations that have forged it then the Antichrist will come on “the wings of abomination” to desecrate the temple Mount, and unleash a persecution against the Jewish nation unparalleled in the history of the world. At that time global chaos and upheaval will intensify and accelerate to the point where the Lord Jesus will have to come back to save the entire globe from total annihilation!
2. The Pagan Roman Emperors.
There were ten major historical persecutions by the Roman emperors against the Christians. Three of these were very severe. Nero (64-67AD) During his persecution Nero had Christians burned to death on fiery crosses to light up his garden parties while he had others thrown alive to wild beasts in the arena. During his persecution both Peter and Paul were martyred. Domitian (95-96AD) this persecution was short but extremely severe and it is estimated that over 40,000 Christians were tortured and killed. During this persecution the apostle John was banished to the Roman penal colony on the Island of Patmos. Trajan (98AD) Ignatius, next in line as the chief Bishop after Peter himself was thrown to the lions and before he died he said, “I am the wheat of Christ: I am going to be ground with the teeth of wild beasts, that I may be found pure bread.”
3. The Roman Catholic Popes. (1232-1820)
Early in the fourth century “Pagan” Rome became “Religious” Rome. When the Roman General Constantine became Emperor of Rome he made Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire. Christianity became the religion of the state. At that point spiritual corruption infiltrated the Christian Church as pagan ceremonies and festivals were “Christianised” Easter and Christmas being two of the more prominent ones. What emerged were the Roman Catholic Church and the beginning of the last great apostasy. Constantine himself made his capital in Constantinople (in modern Turkey) creating the eastern leg of the Roman Empire while he left the bishops of the Church in Rome to control the western leg of the empire. In time the Barbarian Hordes overran the Western Empire. The Eastern leg of the empire called Byzantium with its capital in Constantinople lasted for at least another thousand years until it fell to Islam.
Because of the influence of the Popes in Rome they actually came to replace the Roman Emperors even though they retained the titles and honour of the “Supreme Pontiff” or the “Pontifices Maximus,” both titles that had been given to the pagan emperors. Many of the Popes actually took the insignia or the coat of Arms held by the Roman Emperors. Today in the Vatican many of the Popes have the pagan coat of arms engraved on their coffins. During the time of Constantine Rome became the “Babylon” of the western world lasting for well over 600 years or more. During this time many more pagan ideologies, symbols and practices of the mystery religions of Ancient Babylon were “Christianised” and brought into the worship and liturgy of the Church. However, the Popes of Rome continued the persecution of Bible believing Christians begun under the pagan emperors. This is a historical fact. The inquisition started around 1232 AD and continued virtually unabated in Europe until around 1820. For over 600 years the Roman Catholic Church persecuted two kinds of people. They were Bible believing Christians and Jews. You can read about these terrible persecutions in “Foxes book of Martyrs” and “The Martyrs Mirror” both well-documented books. Today in many third world countries the Roman Catholic Church still persecutes Bible believing Christians. An organization that has documented these persecutions is the “The Voice of the Martyrs.”
Today there is an antichrist in the Church who calls himself the “Vicar of Christ” or the one who stands in the place of Christ on earth. He is called, “Vicarious Christos” in Latin but in Greek it reads “Anti Christos” or “antichrist.” Every pope sits in the seat of the Antichrist. You see it really does not matter what the Bible really says but only what the Pope tells you it says. The proclamations of the Popes and the dogmas of the Church override and contradict the plain teaching of scripture. Of course the main error in Roman Catholicism is the doctrine of the Mass, which is nothing more than “spiritual cannibalism.” If the Church of Rome had its way in the world today it would do the same thing to Born again Bible believing Christians and Jews that it did historically during the years of the Inquisition. Jeremiah said that “Babylon cannot be healed” and neither can the Church of Rome. Once they have declared doctrine it cannot be changed! By the way Islam is the same way. Once the basic doctrines of Islam were established they could not be changed either!
The first century born again Bible believers associated “Babylon” with ancient Rome and the Antichrist and they were right when they identified the pagan emperors collectively as all “antichrists.” The reformers associated “Babylon” with the Church of Rome and the Popes with the Antichrist and they were also right when they identified the Popes collectively as all “antichrists.” Ultimately one will come who will actually establish the final empire modelled on the ancient empire of Babylon itself with a ruler unsurpassed in history for cruelty and oppression. His empire will, for a short time, dominate the entire Middle-Eastern Region and many other nations as well. His empire will geographically spread out to the same boundaries as those of Ancient Assyria, Babylon, Persia, Greece and the Eastern leg of the Roman Empire. Many countries in Europe will become Islamic nations.
Babylon will arise again
Babylon will rise again and another ‘Nimrod’ will appear to build his global empire in the face of God. Like Nimrod the Antichrist will be a rebel of the worst kind and have a kingdom whose ruthlessness will surpass the ruthlessness of Ancient Babylon. I am persuaded by scripture that Rome and the European Union will not be the final player on the world’s stage but only a part of the whole end time scenario. In fact Europe is already being “invaded” by Islam through immigration. Furthermore with all of its wrong doctrines and dogmas the Roman Catholic Church publically at least does not deny the Father and Son relationship in the Godhead however the religion of Islam does and John tells us that whoever denies the Father and Son relationship in the Godhead is the Antichrist!
4. Adolph Hitler.
Adolph Hitler was brought up as a Lutheran and the liturgical practices of the Church were reflected in the way the Nazi parades were held with banners flying in the wind. Actually Adolph Hitler had been baptised into the Lutheran Church and he understood the power of religious fervour and devotion. He was a master manipulator and used his oratory to win the German nation over to his way of thinking. He promised prosperity and sovereignty to the people if they would only follow his agenda for a new global order. He installed into the German people a form of arrogance, pride and superiority over other nations and minority races. He spoke words that inspired others yet his words were filled with hate and violence and oppression and especially with his outright condemnation of the Jewish race. In reality he was a vicious and cruel ruler but was so charismatic that the people followed him anyway. Humanly speaking he was a small rather insignificant man yet he had a supernatural power that inspired the nations of the world to go to war. In fact he had to be a demon-possessed man to do what he did.
A master of deception
The German people could not see his true character but an opportunity for them to become the superior race on earth. He ruthlessly eliminated anyone who opposed him and exterminated over six million Jewish people. Ironically the Roman Catholic Church supported him in his ambition for national German pride and for his hate campaign against the Jews. There are photographs of Bishops actually wearing the Nazi uniform. Also the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem at that time also supported him in his hate of the Jewish people. For centuries the Roman Catholic Church had persecuted Bible Believing Christians and Jews. Some Christians spoke out against Hitler but were silenced, imprisoned or murdered. Most of the German Churches remained silent and said nothing. There is no doubt that the source of Hitler’s Charisma was a demon spirit.
The spirit of Antichrist
The spirit of antichrist had been at work in the German Church through the theological institutions of the early thirties when they started to deliberately teach against the established foundational Biblical truths taught in the Bible. Their apostasy opened the way for Adolph Hitler. The last great apostasy already will ultimately open the way for the Antichrist. It really started when the Emperor Constantine came to power. By making Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire he allowed Pagan festivals, symbols and practices to be repackaged as it were in a form of Institutional Christianity which is still with us today in many churches around the world. The Antichrist will do what Adolph Hitler did. In the end he will go to war with the whole world and at that time have the largest army ever assembled. Nations from the West will attack him and even the kings of the East will come against him. (Daniel 11:38-44) Ultimately he will lead the armies of the nations against Jerusalem and there in the Valley of Jehoshaphat he and his armies will come to a fiery end! (Zechariah 14:12-13)
5. Joseph Stalin.
This despot systematically persecuted Christians and murdered millions of Russians. He was extremely vicious and cruel and exterminated everyone who got in his way or opposed him. The Antichrist’s empire will be a “wild beast.” (Revelation 13:1-10) Stalin set himself up as a god to be worshipped and adored and like Adolph Hitler could enchant and hypnotise the Russian people also leading them to war. His words inspired the Russian people but were filled with violence and hate. He was another antichrist. In fact what he did surpassed what Adolph Hitler did although with the death of around 6 million Jews Hitler was the worst.
6. Saddam Hussein.
Saddam had been the fierce and cruel ruler of Iraq (Ancient Babylon) and a madman who dwelt near the Euphrates River, who sought to be deified and who was determined to exterminate the Jewish nation. Haman in the Bible was the same way. He was a mad man who dwelt near the Euphrates River who sought to elevate himself and destroy the Jewish people. The same spirit or principality that moved Hamman to destroy Israel is the same principality of spirit that drove Saddam to do the same thing. In the first gulf war Saddam surrendered to the Coalition forces on the exact same day of the Jewish calendar that Hamman was defeated and hanged hundreds of years before. Of course he too like all dictators came to his end.
The Antichrist to come
All of these historical characters and others not mentioned all teach us different yet similar characteristics about the final Antichrist to come. He will be a master of deception, a charismatic and hypnotic leader, a politician, financier, vicious and cruel and a wild beast. This man will make the holocaust pale into significance when he unleashes his fury against the Jewish nation and Bible believing Christians. He will proclaim himself to be God and exterminate everyone who will not worship him and follow his agenda. He will control the politics, the economy and have one religion only with himself as the supreme god. He will extend his dominion over many nations both in the Middle-east and the west. He will be both a Middle-eastern and a western potentate.
7. The Final Antichrist will be connected to Religion.
(Daniel 11:36-39) “The king will do as he pleases. He will exalt and magnify himself above every god and will say unheard-of things against the God of gods. He will be successful until the time of wrath is completed, for what has been determined must take place. He will show no regard for the gods of his fathers or for the one desired by women, nor will he regard any god, but will exalt himself above them all. Instead of them, he will honour a god of fortresses; a god unknown to his fathers he will honour with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. He will attack the mightiest fortresses with the help of a foreign god and will greatly honour those who acknowledge him. He will make them rulers over many people and will distribute the land at a price.”
(2 Thessalonians 2:4) “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.”
This man will be a political leader with a strong religious bent and one who has the sole purpose to be worshipped as God and who will ultimately set himself up on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem and proclaim himself to be God incarnate in the flesh! This has been Satan’s agenda down through the centuries to be worshipped as God and he has tried many times to do this through men, yet God, in His sovereignty, has restrained Satan from doing this. For a very brief period of time right at the end of this present age God’s retraining hand will be removed and Satan will achieve his goal, namely to be worshipped as God Himself. According to the prophetic revelations of Isaiah and Ezekiel this has always been Satan’s agenda from the Garden of Eden. As Isaiah wrote; “You said in your heart, “I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.” (Isaiah14:12-14)
Ezekiel the prophet also wrote; “The word of the LORD came to me: “Son of man, take up a lament concerning the king of Tyre and say to him: ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: “ ‘You were the model of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone adorned you: ruby, topaz and emerald, chrysolite, onyx and jasper, sapphire, turquoise and beryl. Your settings and mountings were made of gold; on the day you were created they were prepared. You were anointed as a guardian cherub, for so I ordained you. You were on the holy mount of God; you walked among the fiery stones. You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created till wickedness was found in you.” (Ezekiel 28:11-15)
Counterfeit miracles, Signs and wonders
Of course Satan’s final manifestation of himself in the Antichrist will be preceded by all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders. The Apostle Paul told us this when he said; “The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders.” (2 Thessalonians 2:9) Today when you see the signs and wonders gospel, the faith prosperity heresies, the Purpose Driven marketing strategies, Kingdom now, Replacement theology, Ecumenism and Interfaith associations and Post-Modernism you can see that the apostasy is well underway. In these last days even the elect will be in danger of deception. The Lord Jesus Himself said; “For false Christs’ and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect if that were possible.” (Matthew 24:24)
Today the western world especially all of the nations associated with Christianity are part of “Mystery Babylon” Not only are the European nations traditionally associated with Christianity spiritually and morally corrupt but so is most of Western Evangelical Christianity in America and Great Britain with their long Biblical and Godly tradition. However, Islam is arising in the earth and has already invaded Europe and Great Britain and is rapidly infiltrating America and Australia. It would seem by proven evidence that in Obama America a Muslim President in the Whitehouse who associated with Radical Islamist Organizations such as the Muslim Brotherhood, a global Islamic movement committed to Global Sharia Law and the establishment of Islam as the only religious and political power.
Islam, an ideology
The final Antichrist will have a “religion” of sorts which in reality will be a socio-economic and Militarily based empire committed to Global domination that will diametrically oppose “the people of the book” i.e., to say the Christians and the Jews. All false religions have their roots in the Babylon of Nimrod. We are told in the Book of Revelation that the Antichrist’s beast empire will destroy all false religion and this will include Mecca. The Bible teaches us that Babylon is a city in the desert by the Sea and that its destruction is heard at the Red Sea. The only city that fits this description is Mecca. Historically Babylon was never destroyed. Its destruction is yet to happen. When it does happen all of the false religions of the world will also be decimated and eliminated. To the majority of fundamental Jihad minded Muslims Mecca is the prostitute that rides the beast empire of Islam. Iran has made no secret of the fact that it wants to nuke Mecca. The Antichrist will have to destroy all religion to enable himself to be worshipped as God. He will have no rivals. The false global system of Christendom will also be in his cross sights when he comes to power. All false religion is personified in Mecca as Allah goes way back past the time of Mohammad. Islam’s roots are found in the Babylon of Nimrod. All false religions including apostate Christendom are all part of Babylon the Great the Mother of Harlots and of the abominations of the earth. Indeed “the woman, the mother of harlots” will seek to “ride the beast” but in the end the beast will devour her and burn her with fire! (Revelation 17:3-5, 16-18)
Institutionalized Christendom will become ‘toast’
The Institution of Western Christianity as we know it now will almost cease to exist once Antichrist sets himself up to be worshipped in Israel and also in Christendom, however, there will be a faithful remnant of Jewish people and Bible believers who will not go with the Antichrist and multitudes of them will be purified and refined through persecution that they may obtain a better resurrection! In the end those who have remained faithful to Christ will ultimately reign with Him on the earth as a Kingdom of Priests and together with Him they will have great authority to rule! This was the Lord Jesus’ express promise to all who remain faithful to Him. Even though it was made to a specific Church it applies to every believer in every age. As He said; “To him who overcomes and does My will to the end, I will give authority over the nations to rule them with an iron sceptre and to dash them to pieces like pottery!” (Revelation 2:26-27)