Enemies of Christ
14 December 2018
GraceNotes – A Journey of Discovery
Scripture: 1 John 2:18-21 (Click link for scripture in Bible Gateway)
18 Dear children, the end of this age is near! You have heard that Antichrist is arising, and in fact, many enemies of Christ have already appeared, and this is how we know that we are living in the closing hour of this age. 19 For even though they were once a part of us, they withdrew from us because they were never really of our number. For if they had truly belonged to us they would have continued with us. By leaving our community of believers they made it obvious that they never really belonged to us. 20 But the Holy One has anointed you and you all know the truth. 21 So I’m writing you not because you don’t know the truth, but because you do know it, and no lie belongs to the truth. (1 John 2:18-21 TPT)
The Antichrist! All of my Christian life I’ve heard about The Antichrist. Much energy went into attempts to identify The Antichrist in the 20th Century. Some top candidates for the position were: The Pope of the Roman Catholic Church, Hitler, and Stalin. In a hotly contested presidential race in the USA, fundamentalist Christians often declared the presidential candidate of the opposite party to be The Antichrist. In fact, most anyone the fundamentalist Christians didn’t like was fair game. This sport of “exposing the Antichrist” seems to be great fun, but in reality is pretty much a waste of time and energy. Generations of candidates for the position of The Antichrist have come and gone, dead and buried, passed from the scene.
The real point isn’t to try to identify “The Antichrist.” The point is that anyone or anything that opposes the Lord Jesus Christ is anti (against) Christ. John is clear that most of the antichrists were people who had been part of the church who had begun to embrace false doctrines and had become false teachers, leading others astray from the truth. There were many forms of false teachings in those early days. There was no Bible yet and many forms of twisted teaching about Christ popped up along with a whole range of ideas opposing the simple truth that Jesus Christ was the Son of God, come to earth in flesh, was crucified, buried, rose again, ascended to the Father, and sent his Holy Spirit to guide us into truth.
John didn’t know he was writing “The Bible” when he wrote his Gospel and letters to establish truth, correct error, and warn the antichrists, but he was passionate in his love for Jesus, the Way, the Truth, and the Life. More on this tomorrow.
Father, Please protect us from error and lead us into all truth. For the Kingdom’s sake.