Sermon Prepared by James McCullen
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ANTICHRIST (Singular) AND ANTICHRISTS (Plural)
1 JN. 2:18-27

18 Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have arisen; from this we know that it is the last hour.    19 They went out from us, but they were not {really} of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but {they went out,} in order that it might be shown that they all are not of us.     20 But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you all know.    21 I have not written to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it, and because no lie is of the truth.    22 Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son.    23 Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father; the one who confesses the Son has the Father also.    24 As for you, let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father.    25 And this is the promise which He Himself made to us: eternal life.    26 These things I have written to you concerning those who are trying to deceive you.    27 And as for you, the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you have no need for anyone to teach you; but as His anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you abide in Him.   (NAS)
 

INTRODUCTION
I heard Dr. Walter Martin tell of a machine built to detect counterfeit money. He said the machine was not acquainted with the many varieties of counterfeits but it simply knew the real thing. Jesus is the real Christ but there are counterfeits. Today we will look at the Antichrist and Antichrists.

There are several views related to the second coming of Christ. All of them are named with reference to their convictions concerning the thousand year reign of Christ. Since one thousand is a millennium the positions are called Pre Millennial, Post Millennial, and A-Millennial.

I am most comfortable with the Pre Millennial position. Some very respected scholars have opposing interpretations of these events. Hershel Hobbs is an A-Millennialist, while W.A. Criswell is a strong Pre- Millennialist. R. G. Lee said he was such a determined Pre-Millinnelialist when the doctor asked him to open his mouth and say ah; he just couldn't do it.

No liberal is a Pre- Millennialist.  No Pre- Millennialist is a liberal. This does not mean all A-Millennialist are liberals. It is just an interesting observation. The most evangelistic ministers and ministries are Pre-Millennial. To me those facts are persuasive. But we should always leave room for another person to interpret scripture and these matters should not be a test for fellowship.

1 John 2:18 (NASB) Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that Antichrist is coming, even now many Antichrist have arisen; from this we know that it is the last hour.

1 John 2:22 (NASB) Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the Antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son.

1 John 4:3 (NASB) and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; and this is the spirit of the Antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world.

2 John 1:7 (NASB) For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the Antichrist.
 
 

SATAN TRIES TO COUNTERFEIT ALL OF THE ACTS OF GOD. HE WILL IMITATE JESUS IN SEVERAL WAYS.

1.    GOD IS TRIUNE; SATAN HAS A TRINITY.
 

2.    JESUS IS CALLED BY DIFFERENT NAMES; ANTI-CHRIST; HAS SEVERAL NAMES.
 

3.    JESUS DID MANY MIRACLES; ANTI-CHRIST; WILL PERFORM MANY WONDERS.
 

4.    JESUS MINISTERED FOR 3+ YEARS; ANTI-CHRIST WILL BE PROMINENT 3 1/2 YEARS
 

5.    JESUS DIED AND AROSE, ANTICHRIST DIES AND SATAN RESURRECTS HIM.
 
 

I.     THREE POINTS RELATED TO THE "ANTICHRIST" (Singular). v 18 a 


{18} Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that Antichrist is coming,

A.    ANTICHRIST WILL BE A . . DROP OUT.    Revelation 13:3

{3} And <I saw> one of his heads as if it had been slain, and his fatal wound was healed. And the whole earth was amazed <and followed> after the beast;

Revelation 17:8
"The beast that you saw was and is not, and is about to come up out of the abyss and to go to destruction. And those who dwell on the earth will wonder, whose name has not been written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they see the beast, that he was and is not and will come.
 

B. ANTICHRIST WILL BE One Who . . DENIES.    Revelation 13:4-5

{4} and they worshiped the dragon, because he gave his authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, "Who is like the beast, and who is able to wage war with him?"    {5} And there was given  to him a mouth speaking arrogant words and blasphemies; and authority to act for forty-two months was given to him.
 

C. ANTICHRIST WILL BE A . . DECEIVER.    Revelation 13:6-9
{6} And he opened his mouth in blasphemies against God, to blaspheme His name and His tabernacle, <that is>, those who dwell in heaven.     {7} And it was given to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them; and authority over every tribe and people and tongue and nation was given to him.
{8} And all who dwell on the earth will worship him, <everyone> whose name has not been written from the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who has been slain.    {9} If anyone has an ear, let him hear.
 

ILLUSTRATION
We could hardly believe the advertisement. It comes from Holt Renfrew and it focuses on a "Future Perfect Micro-Targeted Skin Gel" that promises to give your skin what it needs -- luminosity. The ad reads: "The past forgiven. The present improved. The Future Perfect." It used to be Gospel preachers who made this claim for the old-fashioned Gospel. It assures us of God's forgiveness for the past. It vastly improves our present. And it guarantees a perfect future.
 
 

II.    THREE POINTS RELATED TO THE  "ANTICHRISTS."(Plural)  v 18-25


A.    ANTICHRISTS ARE . . DROP OUTS.
{18} Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that Antichrist is coming, even now many Antichrist have arisen; from this we know that it is the last hour.   {19} They went out from us, but they were not <really> of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but <they went out>,in order that it might be shown that they all are not of us.

        1. DROP OUTS INDICATING THE LAST HOUR. v 18
        2. DROP OUTS INDICATING THE LOST HEART. v 19

Illustration
Clem the cat came home after eight years of being who knows where. A homeowner in Bancroft, Wisconsin, said he heard a cat meowing on the front porch. When he opened the door, a big, long-haired, gray male cat walked in, checked things out, began purring, and then jumped up on his favorite chair. Family members couldn't believe their eyes. But when they compared the cat to pictures taken eight years earlier, they could only conclude that Clem the cat had come home. What remarkable homing instincts God has given to some animals! On a spiritual level, why is it that the backslidden child of God seems to have less? Why do we in our rebellion show less sense than the animals?
 

B. ANTICHRISTS ARE ONES WHO . . DENY.
{20} But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you all know.    {21} I have not written to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it, and because no lie is of the truth.
{22} Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the Antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son.    {23} Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father; the one who confesses the Son has the Father also.    {24} As for you, let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father.    {25} And this is the promise which He Himself made to us: eternal life.

        1. DENYING GOD'S REVELATION. v 20-22 Matt.16:16-17
        2. DENYING GOD'S RESIDENCE. v 23-25 a
        3. DENYING GOD'S REWARD. v 25 b

ILLUSTRATION
Four high school boys were late to their morning classes one day. They entered the classroom and solemnly told their teacher they were detained due to a flat tire. The sympathetic teacher smiled and told them it was too bad they were late because they had missed a test that morning. But she was willing to let them make it up. She gave them each a piece of paper and a pencil and sent them to four corners of the room. Then she told them they would pass if they could answer just one question:

Which tire was flat??? -- Paul Harvey
 

C. ANTICHRISTS ARE . . DECEIVERS.    v 26 - 27

{26} These things I have written to you concerning those who are trying to deceive you.   {27} And as for you, the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you have no need for anyone to teach you; but as His anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you abide in Him.

        1. TRYING TO DECEIVE INSPITE OF GOD'S ABIDING ANOINTING. v 27 a
        2. TRYING TO DECEIVE INSPITE OF GOD'S TEACHING ANOINTING. v 27 b

ILLUSTRATION
Recently we had J.R.Duncan preach for us. He is soon to be a missionary in Germany. A few have said "why let such a good pastor go to Germany. I will answer it is due to the call of God and our world need.

Listen to these startling facts.
Did you know that there are more registered fortune-tellers than pastors in Germany? People who worship Satan pray specifically that he would destroy the marriages of pastors.

We need to stop the deception of the Antichrist wherever we can. We need to stand in the face of opposition and speak a word for Christ. Jesus Christ is Lord of Lords and King of Kings. He is the real thing. We invite you to make a commitment to Him today.
 

PERSEVERANCE OF THE SAINTS.

Revelation 13:10
If anyone <is destined> for captivity, to captivity he goes; if anyone kills with the sword, with the sword he must be killed. Here is the [perseverance] and the faith of the saints.

Revelation 14:12
Here is the [perseverance] of the saints who keep the commandments of God and their faith in Jesus.
 
 

CONCLUSION:

I. THREE POINTS RELATED TO THE ANTICHRIST (Singular). v 18 a

A. ANTICHRIST WILL BE A DROP OUT.

B. ANTICHRIST WILL BE A DENIER

C. ANTICHRIST WILL BE A DECEIVER
 

II. THREE POINTS RELATED TO THE ANTICHRISTS (Plural).

A. ANTICHRISTS ARE DROP OUTS.

B. ANTICHRISTS ARE DENIERS

C. ANTICHRISTS ARE DECEIVERS