Luca Signorelli. The Deeds of the Antichrist (1499-1504). Signorelli portrays the devil counseling the Antichrist. With an American Presidential election coming around the corner, I wonder who so-called “prophecy experts” might pick as the one and only Antichrist in our day?
So, who exactly is “the” antichrist?
Back in high school, I knew someone who was convinced that President Jimmy Carter was the antichrist. Carter was a very convincing orator in the 1970s, connecting extremely well with voters frustrated with the then current political situation. Carter even said that he was a “born again” Christian. But by negotiating a peace treaty in the Middle East between Israel and her enemies, was Carter fulfilling the prophecy of Daniel 9:27, the antichrist who would “confirm the covenant with many?”
Okay, let us fast-forward some 35 plus years. He may not have been the best President we have ever had…. but the antichrist?
A lot of people speculate on who this antichrist might be. From military dictators to American presidents, the list of possible candidates seems about as endless as the human imagination (some folks even vote for their favorite picks). Most people get their information about the antichrist from books, movies, late-night cable TV, neighbors and friends.
But how many people know what the Bible actually teaches about the antichrist? You might be surprised to discover that a lot of popular ideas about antichrist owe more to overly fertile imaginations than the clear teaching of Scripture.
From across the pond….
Next week, the UK will hold a referendum on whether or not to leave the European Union. In this discussion, what fascinates me is that some Christians across the pond are concerned that the European Union is fulfilling the role of a “revived Roman empire,” as a sign of the End Times. For example, some prophecy people look upon the Euro currency as displaying a woman riding upon a wild beast, just as it is taught in Revelation 17:3.
Just a word of caution: It might be helpful to be a little bit cautious about prophecy claims that look to the newspapers for signs of fulfillment. Below is a three and a half minute video from British pastor and author Andrew Wilson, making his case for why the European Union (EU) does not line up with what you find in Revelation.1
Interestingly, this may not be much of a surprise to some people! It is important to note that there is a growing, new movement among some Christians, that Europe is not to play such a role in God’s prophetic timetable. Instead, folks like Joel Richardson are teaching that the Islamic Middle East will play that role instead.2
1. I blogged about this topic before when the last Left Behind movie came out. ↩
2. Joel Richardson is interviewed extensively in Covenant and Controversy, a film about Israel and Christian Zionism that I highlighted in a recent blog post.↩