What do we sometimes miss about the Antichrist?

In "God's Word for Today" Steve Oliver writes:

We are given a significant amount of information about Antichrist in this passage. He is a powerful world ruler, deriving his authority from Satan, the ruler of this world. The “name of blasphemy” (13:1) points to an ingrained contempt for the things of God, and in keeping with this, his words are full of blasphemy. His mimicry of Christ, seen in seeming resurrection, is not surprising since this beast is attempting to take the place of God himself. What is surprising is that Antichrist can “make war with the saints, and . . . overcome them.” Throughout history, persecution has resulted in the spread of the gospel and widespread conversions; but here the persecution by Antichrist is more or less successful in stamping out Christianity. In the midst of this description of nearly limitless power and blasphemy, it is easy to miss a minor but crucial part of the description: Antichrist is merely a pawn in the ongoing war of Satan against God. He is permitted to have authority and to persecute the saints. But ultimately, God is in control even in these terrible circumstances, and Antichrist can do no more than God allows.

Source: Christ, the Triumphant Lord: Adult Teacher's Insights, page 52.

2016-07-29T09:00:00+00:00July 29th, 2016|Categories: Lesson Highlights|Tags: |0 Comments

Who is the Antichrist?

In "God's Word for Today" Steve Oliver writes:

Antichrist is a much-studied and much-debated topic. There are some schools of thought that see him as only symbolic of human rebellion against God, and others who view Antichrist as a movement or religion rather than a per-son. Among those who think he is an individual, some peo-ple speculate wildly in their search for this future world ruler. Six-six-six becomes the key to a secret code, which will enable them to identify him before he is revealed. Others equate his mark with some element of culture, such as VISA® credit cards or Monster Energy® drinks.
One of the effects of this search for Antichrist can be that we lose sight of the most important things about him — his evil and his futile rebellion against God. Rather than trying to figure out how quickly this prophesied individual will appear, we need to understand his character and guard against emulating that.

Discussion: How can we avoid "missing the forest for the trees" as we study Revelation (and even other scripture passages)?
Source: Christ, the Triumphant Lord: Adult Teacher's Insights, page 51.

2016-07-28T09:00:00+00:00July 28th, 2016|Categories: Lesson Highlights|Tags: |0 Comments

The Character of Antichrist Depicted

“And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practice, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people” (v. 24).

“God is my Fuehrer!”
These words sprang from the lips of Martin Niemöller, pastor of one of the largest churches in Berlin when Adolf Hitler was chancellor of Germany.  Well loved, articulate, and a faithful pastor, his congregation included many soldiers, government officials, and individuals of all kinds.  However, when Pastor Niemöller stood up to Hitler by refusing to proclaim him as the head of the Christian church, he became a marked man.  This statement finally resulted in his confinement to a concentration camp until the end of World War II.
We must remember that the spirit of an antichrist will always be exposed.  Truly, his character will be revealed.  In the last days another Antichrist, a world leader, will come who proclaims himself to be both Lord and Saviour.   He will deceive many, yet he too shall fall when the King of Kings returns! (James Baker)

And though this world, with devils filled, should threaten to undo us,

We will not fear, for God hath willed His truth to triumph through us:

The Prince of Darkness grim, we tremble not for him;

His rage we can endure, for lo, his doom is sure,

One little word shall fell him.
(Martin Luther; Public Doman)

*Are we strong enough to stand and say, “God is my Fuehrer”?*
This devotional is the Monday, July 25, 2016 entry of Opening the Word.

Image Credit: "Martin Niemöller (1952).jpg" by J.D. Noske / Anefo
from Nationaal Archief (CC BY-SA 3.0 NL). Image resized, cropped.

2016-07-27T09:00:00+00:00July 27th, 2016|Categories: Opening the Word|Tags: |0 Comments

The Rule of Antichrist

Lesson 9 - July 31, 2016
Focus Text: Revelation 13:4-18
Central Truth: The Bible foretells a period of great tribulation when a world dictator will rule the earth.
Objective: By the end of this lesson my students should be able to explain the Bible's teaching concerning the Antichrist. 
Lesson Outline:

  1. Empowered by Satan (Revelation 13:1-7)
  2. Worshipped by the World (Revelation 13:8-15)
  3. Identified by a Mark (Revelation 13:16-18)
2016-07-25T09:00:00+00:00July 25th, 2016|Categories: Weekly Lesson Summaries|Tags: |0 Comments


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