Sunday, March 3, 2013


In last Wednesday’s lesson on 1 John 4, Pastor made a statement that had me questioning what I thought I knew – “The word antichrist is not found in the book of Revelation.” Go ahead, do your own search, I’ll be here when you get back.

Finished? You found that John is the only biblical author that did use the word, in 1 and 2 John, but not in Revelation? Certainly not capitalized as Antichrist, either. He first says:

Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time. (1 John 2:18)

It was not revealed to John when the last time would be, any more than it has been revealed to anyone – only our Father knows:

But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. (Matthew 24:36)

John gives three more verses explaining what an antichrist is:

Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son. (1 John 2:22)

Next is the verse that was part of our lesson:

And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world. (1 John 4:3)

The first part of that chapter tells us how we can know:

Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: (1 John 4:1-2)

There are huge steps in those two verses.

To believe in spirits is beyond many people. They are firmly rooted in a physical world defined by specific laws that can be seen, measured and have been tested for accuracy. A statement of belief not based on empirical evidence is considered without foundation – and the spiritual world is immeasurable.

Accepting Jesus as an historical figure, then gleaning desired attributes from His words is fairly easy. To categorically state that He is Christ, the Messiah, is much more difficult and must be done at a level of spiritual acceptance. A huge distance to span, with many detractors – many antichrists – at work to deny Jesus. Yet, the Bible tells us that is necessary.

John repeats what Christ commanded:

And now I beseech thee, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment unto thee, but that which we had from the beginning, that we love one another. (2 John 1:5)

Not new at all, and from Jesus’ teachings for all:

Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. (Matthew 22:37-40)

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