(Read Part 12)

Antichrist—Third Temple Period
The Antichrist will become the dominant person during the seven-year tribulation period. The Bible provides a plethora of prophetic information regarding the Antichrist’s political, economic and religious advancements during this third temple period. We will examine this distinctly dispensational issue over the next several articles.

The word “Antichrist” is made up of two words: “anti,” meaning “against” or “opposed to;” and “Christ,” meaning “anointed” or “Messiah.” “Antichrist” simply means one opposed to Christ. Scripture uses the word “antichrist” in four different passages. Three are in 1 John and one is in 2 John.[1] The New King James Version capitalizes the word “Antichrist” in 1 John 2:18 and 1 John 4:13, as the translators made a doctrinal conclusion that “Antichrist” refers to the future eschatological literal person called “the Antichrist.”

1 John 2:18

Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour.

1 John 4:2-3

By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world.

The translators of the NKJV did not capitalize the word “antichrist” in 1 John 2:22 and 2 John 7, as the word refers in a general sense to those who deny the deity and reality of the Lord Jesus Christ. Referring back to 1 John 2:18, the translators did not capitalize the word “antichrists” as the one-time usage of the plural form also refers, in a generalized sense, to all those who preach a false gospel—denying that Jesus Christ is God’s Son.

1 John 2:22

Who is a liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist who denies the Father and the Son.

2 John 7

For many deceivers have gone out into the world who do not confess Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.

The challenge for the Bible student is to discover the full theological meaning behind the reality of the eschatological “Antichrist.” This requires the use of a topical study method, more commonly called systematic theology. The major doctrines of Scripture each possess a formal name such as anthropology, the study of man; angelology, the study of angels; Bibliology, the study of the Bible; Christology, the study of Christ; demonology, the study of demons; ecclesiology, the study of the church; hamartiology, the study of sin, pneumatology, the study of the Holy Spirit; Satanology, the study of Satan; soteriology, the study of salvation, and theology proper, the study of God. Eschatology is the specific theological discipline that thoroughly examines the study of the future by extracting pertinent material from all 66 books of the Bible. A thorough study of the “Antichrist,” a future prophetic literal person, mandates an examination of all of the prophetic Scriptures.

Introduction to the Antichrist
Dr. Ed Hindson provides an excellent introductory summary regarding the Antichrist.

Biblical prophecies clearly predict the rise of the Antichrist in the end times and more that 100 passages of Scripture describe the Antichrist’s origin, nationality, character, career and global conquest. The term Antichrist may be applied both to an individual and to the system he represents.[2]

Much speculation has taken place over the years attempting to identify the literal eschatological Antichrist. You may have heard certain prophecy teachers actually name a person they thought was the Antichrist. The next article will examine the origin of the Antichrist as stated in Scripture. The one thing guaranteed is that the Bible does not provide the name of the person who will become the literal Antichrist. Therefore, as we examine this distinctly dispensational doctrine of the Antichrist during the future third temple period, remember Christian, that we will not be on earth when the Antichrist is revealed. The next event on God’s calendar is the pre-tribulation rapture of the church age saints (1 Thess. 4:13-18).  Jesus Christ will remove all Christians from the earth before the first act of the Antichrist takes place, when he confirms a seven-year covenant with Israel and begins the ticking of the clock on the seven-year tribulation period (cf. Dan. 9:27).

Here we stand; we cannot, and must not, be moved from this distinctive dispensational doctrine.

(Read Part 14)

Dr. Richard Schmidt is the founder of Prophecy Focus Ministries, having previously served as a pastor and church planter. His love for the prophetic Scriptures resulted in writing a doctoral dissertation on a dispensational perspective on the mystery church age existing between the 69th and 70th weeks of Daniel. Dr. Schmidt offers seminars on a variety of prophetic topics to local churches and conferences. We are very excited to involve him as a contributing author to Dispensational Publishing House.

Copyright © 2016 by Dr. Richard Schmidt. Used by permission of the author.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®.
Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

[1] J. Randall Price, “Antichrist,” in Dictionary of Premillennial Theology, ed. by Mal Couch (Grand Rapids. MI: Kregel, 1996), p. 43.

[2] Ed Hindson, “Antichrist,” in The Popular Encyclopedia of Bible Prophecy, ed. by Tim LaHaye and Ed Hindson (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 2004), p. 23.