The Bible predicts a miraculous event commonly referred to as the rapture. “We who are.. .alive.. .will be caught up.. .to meet the Lord in the air,” 1 Thessalonians 4:17. However, this catching away of God’s people does not shield us from the many anti-Jesus deceptions present in the world today.
Scripture predicts a world government headed by a man called Antichrist. Before this evil person arrives on earth, “Many antichrists [will] come. This is how we know it is the last hour,” 1 John 2:18. Let’s consider Jesus’ warnings regarding deceptions advanced by the spirit of antichrist:
“Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many,” Matthew 24:4-5.
“At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false Christ’s and false prophets
will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect—if that were possible. See, I have told you ahead of time. So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the desert,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it,” Matthew 24:23-26.
We must learn to identify the spirit of antichrist who currently stalks planet earth!
First Declaration Made by the Spirit of Antichrist: The Bible Isn’t God’s Word
Every person and every group controlled by the spirit of antichrist claims that the Bible is merely a book written by humans. This assertion isn’t surprising. In Genesis 3 the supreme deceiver attacked the validity of God’s Word. “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”
First, Satan insinuated doubt about God’s Words: “Did God really say?” Second, Satan distorted God’s Word: “You must not eat from any tree in the garden.” God actually said to Adam, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil,” Genesis 2:16-17.
Genesis 3 exposes the pattern the spirit of antichrist always uses—deny the Bible is God’s Word and distort it. What does the Bible say about itself?
“The tablets were the work of God; the writing was the writing of God, engraved on the tablets” (Exodus 32:16 ).
“I wrote for them the many things of my law” (Hosea 8:12).
“Jesus replied.. .These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me” (John 14:23-24).
“Every Scripture is God-breathed—given by his inspiration” (2 Timothy 3:16 Amplified).
“These are the true words of God” (Revelation 19:9).
“He who was seated on the throne said…these words are trustworthy and true” (Revelation 21:5).
God handpicked various men who served as his co-laborers in recording Scripture. “Understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit,” 2 Peter 1:20-21.
In summary, Scripture is the reliable Word of the Creator of the Universe. There is no writing from either ancient or present times remotely equivalent to Scripture. Therefore, everyone who declares their word equals Scripture is of the spirit of antichrist. Everyone who changes the meaning of Scripture is under the control of the spirit of antichrist. Scripture means what it says and says what it means.
Second Declaration Made by the Spirit of Antichrist: Jesus is not God in a Human Body
Verses in 1st and 2nd John clearly expose another deceptive teaching of the spirit of antichrist.
“This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. The spirit of the antichrist…even now is already in the world” (1 John 4:2-3).
“Many deceivers, who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh, have gone out into the world. Any such person is the deceiver and the antichrist” (2 John 1:7).
Jesus’ humanity is absolutely essential to God’s plan for creation. In the man Christ Jesus, heavenly Father exalted a human to lordship over all things. When we repent of our sins and submit to Jesus’ lordship, we participate in Jesus’ exaltation. “God…seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus,” Ephesians 2:6. The Spirit of antichrist hates this because our enthronement dethrones him!
The spirit of antichrist always alleges that Scripture is not God’s Word and Jesus isn’t God’s Son. Each teaching depends on the other. If Scripture is invalid, then Jesus’ claims to deity are untrue. Conversely, if Jesus’ words are unreliable, then Scripture is undependable. Every human is free to determine truth. Basically this teaching goes back to Satan’s lie in Genesis 3:5, “You will be like God.”
Satan desires equality with God. In reality, he regards equality as superiority to God. In the same way, the spirit of antichrist seeks to elevate its teachings above Scripture. This so-called superior teaching downgrades Jesus to a mere mortal like every other human. For example, a Hindu can easily fit Jesus into his pantheon of innumerable gods; Jesus is just a good teacher who lived about 2,000 years ago.
During these days of rampant deception, we trust “him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and great joy,” Jude 24.
Be greatly encouraged,
Pastor James Fields