I saw an article on the Christian Newswire site where there has been some comparison between the John McCain ad about the celebrity power of Barack Obama and the Anti-Christ character in the Left Behind series. Here is an excerpt from the article (found here):
(Tim) LaHaye and (Jerry) Jenkins (authors of the Left Behind series) take a literal interpretation of prophecies found in the Book of Revelation. They believe the antichrist will surface on the world stage at some point, but neither see Obama in that role. "I've gotten a lot of questions the last few weeks asking if Obama is the antichrist," says novelist Jenkins. "I tell everyone that I don't think the antichrist will come out of politics, especially American politics."
"I can see by the language he uses why people think he could be the antichrist," adds LaHaye, "but from my reading of scripture, he doesn't meet the criteria. There is no indication in the Bible that the antichrist will be an American."
There are so many things wrong with the above statements. First off, to Mr. LaHaye, of course there is no indication in the Bible that the antichrist will be an American, there is NO mention whatsoever of America in the Bible! What would a mention of
Second, nowhere in the New Testament is the term antichrist used to describe a literal singular human being. The book of 1 John 2.18 describes, “antichrist is coming, even now many antichrist have arisen; from this we know that it is the last hour.” He later goes on to describe this antichrist as one who denies that Jesus is the Christ (messiah)? “This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son.” No mention of a singular world figure who will usher in a final conflict of the world armies at Armeggedon. The antichrist is an attitude that denies that Jesus is the messiah or savior. The fact that it is not just a final “end times” person is implied in that the author (writing in the first century) says that there were already many antichrists in the world at the time. Anyone who denies that Jesus is the Christ (messiah) is antichrist.
In 2 John 7, the writer there adds a new dimension to our understanding of antichrist: “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.” Thus, if you deny that Jesus is the messiah and/or deny that Jesus came in the flesh (but only appeared to be human but was actually a spirit), you may be antichrist. If you are a deceiver of any kind when it comes to the person and work of Christ, you may be the antichrist.
Now, if we want to talk about “the man of lawlessness” (2 Thessalonians 2.1-12) or “the beast coming out of the sea” or in Revelation 13.1-10 or the “beast coming up out of the earth” in Revelation 13.11-18 (the one associated with the number 666), then that is a different story. However, before we search the headlines and campaign promises, realize that every generation for the last two thousand years has attempted to identify the beast or the man of lawlessness in their own time. Every pope since the Reformation has been identified as the beast, as has infamous world figures such as Adolf Hitler. Even American president Ronald
So, tread lightly when trying to identify the beast or the man of lawlessness and realize (like the writer of 1 and 2 John) that the spirit of the antichrist has been with us for two thousand years.