|Antichrists in the End Time|
|Written by arkwriter|
|Sunday, 06 September 2009 10:39|
Antichrists in the End Time
The only place in the Holy Bible where the word “Antichrist” appears is in the epistles of John the Apostle. Here they are:
“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. They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us.” (1 Jn. 2:18-19)
There are three important truths we can learn from these verses.
A. There are “many antichrists” and not just one as some modern-day eschatologists believe and teach.
B. The “antichrists” have already existed in the First Century.
C. The “antichrists” have left the Christian Church. They were never saved.Who is a liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist who denies the Father and the Son. Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father either; he who acknowledges the Son has the Father also.” (1 Jn. 2:22-23)
The “antichrist” is defined as a “a liar who denies that Jesus is the Christ.” The “antichrist” also “denies the Father and the Son”.
“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 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.” (1 Jn. 4:1-4)
The “spirit of the Antichrist” had already existed in the First Century.
Gnosticism has the spirit of the Antichrist
Gnosticism is a philosophical and religious movement which started in pre-Christian times. The name is derived from the Greek word "gnosis" which literally means "knowledge." However, the English words "Insight" and "enlightenment" capture more of the meaning of "gnosis."
Gnosticism is not factual, intellectual, rational knowledge, such as is involved in mathematics and physics. Rather, Gnosticism thrives on mythology and it involves the relational or experiential knowledge of the supernatural and of the divine or spiritual nature within humans. Ancient Gnosticism is revived in modern time as the New Age Movement. It is a religious cult in the true sense of the word.
Gnostics believe that they have secret knowledge about God and humanity and the rest of the general population is either ignorant or unaware of. Some of their beliefs have infiltrated First Century Christianity.
· Deity They believe in a Supreme God of Truth who is remote from human affairs; he is unknowable and undetectable by human senses. They also believe in other lesser gods and goddesses. They acknowledge YAHWEH, the God of the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament) as the Creator of the earth and its life forms, but He is viewed by Gnostics as fundamentally evil, jealous, rigid, lacking in compassion, and prone to genocide.
· Christ They do not believe the Lord Jesus Christ is the One True God manifested in the flesh. The apostle John has warned the Early Apostolic Church about their false beliefs and labeled them “antichrists” (1 Jn. 2:18-23; 2 Jn. 7). Some Gnostic groups promoted Docetism, the belief that Christ was pure spirit and only had a phantom body; Jesus just appeared to be human to his followers. They reasoned that a true emissary from the Supreme God could not have been overcome by the evil of the world, and to have suffered and died. These beliefs were considered heresy by many non-Gnostic Christians. Some Gnostics believed that Christ's resurrection occurred at Jesus' death on the cross. They defined His resurrection as occurring when His spirit was liberated from his body. Many Gnostics believed that Jesus Christ had both male and female apostles that led the Early Church.
· Salvation The Gnostics seem to have looked upon Jesus Christ as a revealer or liberator, rather than a Savior or Judge. His purpose was to spread knowledge which would free individuals from other gods’ control and allow them to return to their spiritual home with the Supreme God at death. To the Gnostics a person attains salvation by learning secret knowledge of their spiritual essence: a divine spark of light or spirit. They then have the opportunity to escape from the prison of their bodies at death. Their soul can ascend to be reunited with the Supreme God at the time of their death. Gnostics divided humanity into three groups:
A. The spiritual, who would be saved irrespective of their behavior while on earth.
B. The Soulish, who could be saved if they followed the Gnostic path.
C. The carnal who are hopelessly lost
Resurgence of Gnosticism in the End Time
The Gnostic Movement and its literature were essentially wiped out before the end of the 5th century CE by the Catholic Church. Its beliefs are currently experiencing a rebirth throughout the world, triggered in part by the discovery of an ancient Gnostic library at Nag Hammadi, Egypt in the 1940s, and the finding of the Gospel of Judas at El Minya, Egypt, in the 1970s.
April 9, 2006 is the day the traditional Christian churches celebrated Palm Sunday, and also the day of the Lord Jesus Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem. That day was the beginning of the Holy Week. During primetime – 8:00 p.m. (ET) on that evening National Geographic premiered “The Gospel of Judas”. Then again on primetime Tuesday April 11, 2006 National Geographic aired “Unlocking Da Vinci’s Code: The Full Story”. What do these two television programs have in common? Both originated from the same source which is Gnosticism.
The Gospel of Judas
The word “Gospel” which means Good News is completely misplaced in its connection with Judas. The so-called “Gospel of Judas” is actually a perverted gospel (Gal. 1:6-9) because there is no Savior, no atonement, no remission of sin and no redemption, and it ends with his betrayal of the Lord Jesus Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane. There is no mention of the Crucifixion, Burial and the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ that provides salvation for Christians and eternal life in heaven. The “Gospel of Judas” is nothing but a myth at best and more accurately, it is a distortion of the truths that are recorded in the New Testament. It is nothing but a big lie that is fabricated by the father of lies – the devil (Jn. 8:44; Rev. 12:9).
The “Gospel of Judas”, written in the ancient Coptic script in the Third or Fourth Century, is believed by its promoters to be the translation of an original Greek text belonging to an early Christian sect sometime before AD 180. No Greek manuscripts have ever been found. It is highly questionable that Judas Iscariot, the apostle who betrayed the Lord Jesus Christ, had ever written any document at all. In fact none of the twelve apostles, who have been following their Master closely for about three and half years, have ever written any document before the Crucifixion. The Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, John and the Acts of the Apostles were written several years after the Lord Jesus Christ had ascended to heaven.
In the “Gospel of Judas” he described his conversations with the Lord Jesus Christ just days before the Crucifixion. For obvious reasons Judas could not have written such a document because it is documented by the Gospel writers that Judas had committed suicide not too long after his betrayal of Jesus Christ (Mt. 27:3-5; Acts 1:15-18). It is more than likely the “Gospel of Judas” was written in the Coptic script by someone from the Gnostic sect, and for sure, it is inspired by the evil and lying spirit of the devil to confuse the Christian Church in Egypt.
The “Gospel of Judas” does not claim that the other disciples were in agreement with its content. On the contrary its message is that the disciples have not learned the true gospel, which Jesus taught only to Judas Iscariot, which this part of the “gospel” exemplifies:
"Knowing that Judas was reflecting upon something that was exalted, Jesus said to him: Step away from the others [the disciples] and I shall tell you the mysteries of the kingdom. It is possible for you to reach it, but you will grieve a great deal. For someone else will replace you, in order that the twelve [disciples] may again come to completion with their god."
Did the Lord Jesus Christ specially chose Judas Iscariot to tell him exclusively “the mysteries of the kingdom.”? Absolutely not! Matthew wrote: “And the disciples came and said to Him, ‘Why do You speak to them in parables?’ He answered and said to them, ‘Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given.” (Mt. 13:10-11). Acts of the Apostles recorded after the Lord’s resurrection “He presented Himself alive after His sufferingby many infallible proofs, being seen by them during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.” (Acts 1:3) The Lord Jesus Christ had openly declared the Kingdom of God to all His disciples and never exclusively to only one of them. The claim of the “Gospel of Judas” that Jesus had given the “mysteries of the kingdom” only to Judas Iscariot is typical of Gnostic theology and literature.
There are two key passages in the “Gospel of Judas” that Jesus compares Judas with the other disciples. One states: "You will exceed all of them. For you will sacrifice the man that clothes me." Jesus also indicates that Judas will be despised by the other disciples. "You will be cursed by the other generations — and you will come to rule over them." The Lord Jesus Christ could not have made such statements because of two principal reasons.
1. The Lord Jesus Christ had taught His disciples they should not compete against one another for positions in order to rule over others (Lk. 22:24-26).
2. The statements would conflict with what are recorded in the canonical Gospels (Mt. 26:20-25).
20 When evening had come, He sat down with the twelve.
21 Now as they were eating, He said, "Assuredly, I say to you, one of you will betray Me."
22 And they were exceedingly sorrowful, and each of them began to say to Him, "Lord, is it I?"
23 He answered and said, "He who dipped his hand with Me in the dish will betray Me.
24 The Son of Man indeed goes just as it is written of Him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been good for that man if he had not been born."
25 Then Judas, who was betraying Him, answered and said, "Rabbi, is it I?" He said to him, "You have said it."
The apostle John had written a more sinister description of Judas (Jn. 13:21-30).
21 When Jesus had said these things, He was troubled in spirit, and testified and said, "Most assuredly, I say to you, one of you will betray Me."
22 Then the disciples looked at one another, perplexed about whom He spoke.
23 Now there was leaning on Jesus' bosom one of His disciples, whom Jesus loved.
24 Simon Peter therefore motioned to him to ask who it was of whom He spoke.
25 Then, leaning back on Jesus' breast, he said to Him, "Lord, who is it?"
26 Jesus answered, "It is he to whom I shall give a piece of bread when I have dipped it." And having dipped the bread, He gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon.
27 Now after the piece of bread, Satan entered him. Then Jesus said to him, "What you do, do quickly."
28 But no one at the table knew for what reason He said this to him.
29 For some thought, because Judas had the money box, that Jesus had said to him, "Buy those things we need for the feast," or that he should give something to the poor.
30 Having received the piece of bread, he then went out immediately. And it was night.
The “Gospel of Judas” ends abruptly. "They [the arresting party] approached Judas and said to him: 'What are you doing here? You are Jesus' disciple.' Judas answered them as they wished. And he received some money and handed him over to them."
Here is the true story of how Judas Iscariot’s life came to an end (Mt. 27:3-10).
3 Then Judas, His betrayer, seeing that He had been condemned, was remorseful and brought back the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders,
4 saying, "I have sinned by betraying innocent blood." And they said, "What is that to us? You see to it!"
5 Then he threw down the pieces of silver in the temple and departed, and went and hanged himself.
6 But the chief priests took the silver pieces and said, "It is not lawful to put them into the treasury, because they are the price of blood."
7 And they consulted together and bought with them the potter's field, to bury strangers in.
8 Therefore that field has been called the Field of Blood to this day.
9 Then was fulfilled what was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet, saying, "And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the value of Him who was priced, whom they of the children of Israel priced,
10 and gave them for the potter's field, as the LORD directed me."
The bishop of Lyons, Irenaeus, described the “Gospel of Judas” in some detail in 180 AD and denounced it as heretical. Irenaeus was an aggressive advocate of there being only four authoritative gospels – Matthew, Mark, Luke and John – reflecting the consensus of the Early Church.
Although the promoters of the “Gospel of Judas” have attempted to authenticate the Coptic manuscript by stating the fact that Scientists at the University of Arizona's Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (AMS) lab in Tucson, Ariz., have radiocarbon dated it to be between A.D. 220 and A.D. 340, it is still questionable whether or not Judas Iscariot had actually written it himself. There is overwhelming and compelling evidence that he did not because he could not have possibly written it. The “Gospel of Judas” is definitely a document of deception that was fabricated by the heretical sect of Gnostics long after Judas the betrayer of the Lord Jesus Christ had committed suicide.
What is The Da Vinci Code?The Da Vinci Code is a novel by Dan Brown that has held one of the top two or three places on best-seller lists since its publication with more than 4.5 million copies sold.
In Brown's novel, the "Da Vinci code" refers to cryptic messages supposedly incorporated by Leonardo Da Vinci into his artwork. According to the novel, Leonardo was a member of an ancient secret society called the "Priory of Sion" dedicated to preserving the "truths" that Jesus designated Mary Magdalene as His successor, that His message was about the celebration of the "sacred feminine," that Jesus and Mary Magdalene were married and had children and that the Holy Grail of legend and lore is really Mary Magdalene, the "sacred feminine," the vessel who carried Jesus' children.
Who was Mary Magdalene according to the Scriptures?
Mary Magdalene is mentioned 12 times in the Gospels. She was healed of demon possession by Jesus (Lk. 8:2), was present at the Crucifixion (Mt. 27:55-56), and the tomb (Mt. 27:61; Mk. 16:1-8), and was the first disciple to see the Risen Jesus Christ (Mk. 16:9; Jn. 20:11-18), announced the Good News to the other disciples (Jn. 20:1-2).
Who was Mary Magdalene according to Dan Brown?
Brown says Mary Magdalene was of royal blood, of the tribe of Benjamin, and the wife of Jesus Christ. According to Brown, after the crucifixion, Mary, pregnant with Jesus' child, moved to France and became the root of the Merovingian royal family.
He also says Jesus intended for Mary to be the head of His Church (celebrating the sacred feminine, remember) but that Peter wrested power from her, suppressed evidence of Jesus' real intentions and set into motion a 2,000-year conspiracy to demonize Mary Magdalene.
An Assault on the Divinity of the Lord Jesus Christ
Much attention has been given to The Da Vinci Code’s claim that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene. But an even more audacious claim of the novel is that the divinity of Jesus was first raised and established at the Council of Nicaea in A.D. 325, and that prior to that time, no one—not even Jesus’ followers—believed Jesus was anything more than a “mortal prophet” and great man. The fact that this has caused hardly a ripple among fans of the novel indicates a revealing (and hardly surprising) lack of knowledge about early Church history and belief.
The Lord Jesus Christ is the One True God
Here are clear and indisputable biblical evidences to prove that the Lord Jesus Christ is the One True God manifested in the flesh.
Isaiah 9:6 is one of the most powerful prophecies that the One True God would manifest Himself in the flesh:
"For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government willl be upon His shoulder: And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."
The terms “Child” and “Son” refer to the Incarnation or manifestation of the “Mighty God" and the “Everlasting Father."
Isaiah also prophesied that the Messiah would be called “Immanuel”, that is, “God with us” (Isa. 7:14 Mt. 1:22-23).
Micah 5:2 proves that the Messiah is God. "But you, Bethlehem Ephratah . . . yet out of you shall come forth to Me the One to be ruler in Israel, Whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting."
Thus the Old Testament clearly states that the Messiah and Savior who is to come would be the One True God Himself.
The Holy Spirit has inspired the apostle John to write:
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." (Jn 1:1)
"And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth." (Jn. 1:14)
The "Word" is "Logos" [ Greek ] , a conception or idea. God had in the very beginning of time conceived the idea of man's redemption through His becoming man. The idea materialized when "the Word became flesh and dwelt among us". The Lord Jesus Christ is God coming in the form of man. This is the greatest mystery of all time.
“And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the Spirit, Seen by angels, Preached among the Gentiles, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.” (1 Tim. 3:16)
Here again the apostle Paul concurred with the apostle John that Jesus is God who "was manifested in the flesh". The test of true discipleship is the acceptance that "Jesus Christ has come in the flesh" (1 Jn. 4:2-3). The apostles had warned the Christians in their days about those who preached "another Jesus whom we have not preached.” (2 Cor. 11:4). One thing we need to remember is that the apostles knew the Lord Jesus Christ more intimately than anyone else in another century (1 Jn. 1:1-2). They were eye-witnesses to all the works of the Lord Jesus, who not only claimed to be God but was prepared to make a stand for His claims (Jn. 5:17-29, 10:33).
After His resurrection the Lord Jesus appeared to His disciples. (Jn. 20:19-20) The apostle Thomas was not present at the first appearance, so he had doubts about the risen Christ. When the Lord Jesus appeared to them again, "then He said to Thomas, Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it in My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.' And Thomas answered and said to Him, 'My Lord and my God!' Jesus said to him, 'Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed"' (Jn. 20:24-29). If the apostles who had seen the risen Christ could accept Him as their one and only Lord and God, then we can receive much more blessings when we also accept Him as our Lord and God.
The Holy Bible recorded in many places the Lord Jesus was worshiped as God. We find the wise men worshiped Jesus as a child (Mt. 2:11). The leper worshiped Jesus (Mt. 8:2). The ruler bowed and worshiped Him (Mt. 9:18). The believer who was blind worshiped Him (Jn. 9:38). The women worshiped Him (Mt. 15:25); Mary Magdalene worshiped Him (Mt. 28:9); the disciples worshiped Him (Mt. 28:17).The Greek word for worship is proskeneo which is the same word used for worship of Yahweh God. It is rendered 16 times to Jesus Christ as a beneficent superior; at least 24 times to God or to Jesus as God. "The root idea of bodily prostration is much less prominent than in the Old Testament. It is always translated "worship." (International Standard Bible Encylopaedia) In Matthew 4:10 the Lord Jesus Christ said to Satan `You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve.' He certainly was not telling him to do reverence only but also to serve Him.
May God bless you
This research article is a presentation of Paul Wong
to the ARK Forum on April 15, 2006
It is published on this Website on September 6, 2009
|Last Updated on Monday, 11 April 2016 15:48|