Ministry Leader: Is this Whole Antichrist Thing Being Blown Out of Proportion?

(Charisma Media archives)
It is a big topic in the Bible, right? The whole book of Revelation talks about the Antichrist and the terrifying things he is going to do to the church at the end of the age.

But wait. Would you believe me if I told you the word "antichrist" does not appear even once in the book of Revelation?

How do I know that? I have the free Bible software e-Sword downloaded to my computer, and I can do a search of any word I want to. So, I put the word "antichrist" in the search bar, hit "search" and presto, no occurrences of the word "antichrist" anywhere in the book of Revelation.

I wonder how that is possible since I have been taught that the entire book is about his destructive ways. So, what is Revelation really about? Surprisingly, Revelation 1:1 (NKJV) tells us exactly what the focus of the book is: "The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants—things which must shortly take place. And He sent and signified it by His angel."

OK, that is crystal clear. This book reveals Jesus Christ—not the Antichrist—and it does it through symbolic language. So, I need to go to the Old Testament to discover what these symbols meant there, then apply them through the revelation of the Holy Spirit to discover the message of the glory of Christ as He overcomes sin in our lives (our beastly nature) and makes us victorious in Him.

Well, that may be true, but what about the rest of the Bible? That talks a lot about the Antichrist, right?

Every Verse in the Bible with "antichrist"

Since it is so simple to do a word search for antichrist using e-Sword, I did it and below is every verse in the Bible that has the word "antichrist" in it. Read them carefully and prayerfully, and jot down what you discover about the Antichrist:

  1. "Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have appeared; from this we know that it is the last hour" (1 John 2:18)
  2. "Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son" (1 John 2:22)
  3. "Every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the spirit of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world" (1 John 4:3)
  4. "For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the Antichrist" (2 John 1:7)

There are only four verses in the entire Bible with the word "antichrist" in them. Yet I have been taught to live in fear and terror of the coming Antichrist. Totally unbelievable.

So, what do the four verses of Scripture teach us about the Antichrist?

  1. There were many antichrists around when John wrote his letters to the church.
  2. The spirit of the Antichrist is in those who do not acknowledge that Jesus is God's Son and He came to earth in the flesh.

Well, that is also crystal clear. Everyone who refuses to believe that Jesus is God's Son and that He offered salvation to the world through His death and Resurrection contains the spirit of the Antichrist. That means there are quite a few people who are antichrists running around today. Some "pastors" would even fall into this category. Yikes.

This is totally different than what I find in the multitude of books about the Antichrist. They teach me to fear the coming Antichrist. But remember, it is satan who wants us to fear.

God teaches us to have faith and believe that He is Almighty God who is watching over us as our shepherd and provider and sustainer, and He is working all things out for good for us (Rom. 8:28).

What I am Going to Do

Since the Bible has so little to say about the Antichrist, and the Bible clearly says that God's government is continually increasing, I am going to believe that and get excited about that and join God's team in bringing that forth in my world.

"There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace, On the throne of David and over his kingdom, To establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness From then on and forevermore. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will accomplish this" (Isa. 9:7).

Not that I haven't tried fear in the past. I have, and I find it disgusting. I especially can't stand it when non-believers have a brighter view of the future than I do as a Christian. That is so upside-down I just want to scream. Stop it, church. Stop feeding on fear and believing for evil to overtake the world!

I am not going to leave it to non-believers and new-agers to believe for an increase of peace while I believe for an increase in evil. I repent for living in fear and false theology and overlaying the Bible with the doctrines of men so that I would even think the whole book of Revelation was about the Antichrist when it clearly states it is the revealing of the risen Christ.

From this point on I am going to read the Bible under the illumination of the Holy Spirit (Luke 24:32), and walk in the light as a world-changer who is active in discipling all nations (Matt. 28:18-20).

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Mark Virkler, Ph.D., has authored more than 50 books in the areas of hearing God's voice and spiritual growth. He is the founder of Communion With God Ministries and Christian Leadership University, where the voice of God is at the center of every learning experience. Mark has taught on developing intimacy with God and spiritual healing for 30-plus years on six continents. The message has been translated into over 40 languages and he has helped to establish more than 250 church-centered Bible schools around the world.

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