Son of Perdition: Revealing the Antichrist
One of the biggest points of interest in studying the end times is the figure known as the Antichrist. He is a man who would imitate our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. But who exactly will the Antichrist be? Modern theologians and others have pointed to different people in different roles– everything from the Catholic Pope to a President of the United States to a Secretary-General of the United Nations. The Bible does not specifically identify the Antichrist, but it lays out the attributes of this man and his role in the Tribulation.
1. The Antichrist will be exceedingly sinful.
In the book of 2 Thessalonians, the apostle Paul gives a description of the man called Antichrist. He begins in verse three: “Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition…”
Paul speaks here of a specific man– a man of sin and the son of perdition. These terms speak of a person who totally rejects the grace, power, and sovereignty of Almighty God.
2. The Antichrist will conquer the world through diplomacy.
In Revelation 6:1, John witnesses the Lamb open the first of the Seal Judgments. John writes: “And I looked, and behold, a white horse. He who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer.”
The man who sits on this white horse has a bow in his hand. Notice, however, that there are no arrows with this bow. This bow cannot be used as a physical weapon without arrows. This tells us that when he conquers the world, he will triumph through diplomacy, not bloodshed. This aspect of his rule will attract the world’s adoration– temporary peace will be one of the tools with which the Antichrist will deceive the world.
3. The Antichrist will have the authority of Satan.
Later, in Revelation 13, John writes: “Now the beast I which I saw was like a leopard, his feet were like the feet of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. The dragon gave him his power, his throne, and great authority.” (Revelation 13:2)
The Antichrist will rule the world with the authority of Satan– his master will be Satan, and he will worship Satan.
4. The Antichrist will be falsely killed and falsely resurrected.
John continues in Revelation 13, “And I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded, and his deadly wound was healed. And all the world marveled and followed the beast.” (Revelation 13:3)
One of the greatest false miracles the Antichrist will perform to sway the world will be a false death and resurrection. Verse 14 indicates that he will be wounded by the sword and will live– it will be a false death. Consquently, it will result in a false resurrection. This will solidify the world’s worship of the beast (Antichrist). There will be those who believe that the Antichrist is savior of the world.
5. The Antichrist will kill anyone who does not worship him.
Speaking of the false prophet who will proclaim the Antichrist, John writes: “He was granted to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed.” (Revelation 13:15)
At the beginning of the Tribulation, the Antichrist will proclaim world peace and religious tolerance. But eventually, after convincing the world that he is a deity, he will execute anyone who does not worship him. This will force believers during the time to go into hiding to avoid detection by the Antichrist.
6. The Antichrist will demand absolute loyalty from the world.
In speaking of the false prophet will speaks for the Antichrist, John writes: “He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, nor the number of his name.” (Revelation 13:16)
This mark, which may be in the form of a tattoo, a brand, or anything as advanced as biochip technology, will be administered to the world. It will be the ultimate sign of loyalty to the Antichrist and to Satan.
7. The Antichrist will breach the temple of God and exalt himself.
Paul continues in 2 Thessalonians 2:4, “who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.”
The Antichrist will exhibit qualities of Satan himself. Satan tried to exalt himself about God, much in the same way that the Antichrist will. He will go so far as to enter the temple of God in Jerusalem and will sit on God’s throne. He will proclaim himself to be God, and the world will believe that he is God.
8. The Antichrist will be destroyed at the appearing of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Paul goes on in 2 Thessalonians 2:8 says, “And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming.”
When Jesus returns at the end of the Tribulation, He will destroy the Antichrist. Revelation 19:20 says this: “Then the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who worked signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image. These two were cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone.”
This is the Antichrist’s fate. For seven years he will rule the world. But at the end, the Lord Jesus Christ, the one true God, will prevail. The Antichrist and the false prophet will be cast into hell, to be tormented forever.