Revelation 12:11 CEV “Our people defeated Satan because of the blood of the Lamb and the message of God. They were willing to give up their lives.”
If I asked, “What did Jesus warn about the most that would mark His return?” many of you would say: Deception. And you would be right. But how many of us are heeding the warning? Our time is the most deceptive in human history!😳 We all get tricked and fooled sometimes. If you think it can’t happen to you you are already deceived. You are under a spell.
Knowledge alone can’t save us from being hoodwinked. Eve quoted God’s command not to eat from the tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil right to the serpent in the Garden. (Genesis 3:2-3) She had knowledge, yet she still ate.😳 She was deceived the Bible says. (1 Timothy 2:14) Adam had this knowledge too. He still ate as well. What will keep us from being tricked by the Devil? Love and Obedience: doing what God says regardless of perceived negative consequences.🤔 (John 14:23-24)
The Devil loves to plant bad assumptions in our heads for obeying God: “If you follow that command too strictly this or that bad thing will happen to you and/or your family, and you won’t be able to get what you want. You must do what you feel and bend the rules a little bit. God understands.” Nope, God does not understand! That’s a lie from hell. Whenever you and I feel like this it’s a trap. It’s a whisper from the Devil. Even if obeying God costs us our physical lives we still have eternal life.😊 Nothing short of that can be all that serious to throw away our relationship with God. The Devil is tricking us if we believe we have to disobey God in order to get what we want. This is a deception.
A certain deception is coming to the whole world that will damn people FOREVER! (2 Thessalonians 2:10-12) This is nothing for lovers of God to fear but we must still be vigilant. Remember, Jesus said that GREAT DECEPTION would mark our time. It behooves us to be extra careful for our enemy walks about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour (through deception).
1 Peter 5:8 KJV “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.”
Parents, is it time to start or continue having certain conversations with our children, to help them remain vigilant? Of course not to scare them, that’s not our intention, but to help them get ready for possible scenarios. Then if these should come about they won’t be so panicked because they were mentally and spiritually prepared. Church, is it time to start or continue to have frank talks with one another about eternal life after physical death; strengthening one another in the faith we have in the resurrection hope?😁 For the same reason as stated above?
Remember how God’s word says we overcome our enemy:
Revelation 12:11 CEV “Our people defeated Satan because of the blood of the Lamb and the message of God. THEY WERE WILLING to give up their lives.”
I strongly encourage you and me not to be afraid or sad. We serve the God who not only sees the beginning to the end, He is the beginning and the end; He is the Alpha and the Omega! We need not worry. Our God is in full control!😁
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Isaiah 8:11-13 NET “Indeed this is what the Lord told me quite forcefully. He warned me not to act like these people: 12 “Do not say, ‘Conspiracy,’ every time these people say the word. Don’t be afraid of what scares them; don’t be terrified. 13 You must RECOGNIZE THE AUTHORITY OF THE LORD OF HEAVEN’S ARMIES. He is the one you must respect; he is the one you must fear.”
What great advice. If you read the context of the above passage (read Isaiah chapter 8) you will see there was impending doom coming on the people. It was sent by God Himself because of their rebellion. Destruction, great fear, darkness, anguish, hunger, etcetera was prophesied to come as a result of their apostasy. And when the people would become hungry and are starving God said they will look up to heaven and curse Him. Not look down on themselves and curse their unfaithfulness and curse their rebellion. (Isaiah 8:21) Sounds familiar?🤔
Revelation 16:8-11 NET “Then the fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and it was permitted to scorch people with fire. Thus people were scorched by the terrible heat, yet THEY BLASPHEMED the name of GOD, WHO HAS RULING AUTHORITY OVER THESE PLAGUES, and they would not repent and give him glory. Then the fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast so that darkness covered his kingdom, and people began to bite their tongues because of their pain. THEY BLASPHEMED THE GOD OF HEAVEN because of their sufferings and because of their sores, but nevertheless THEY STILL REFUSED TO REPENT of their deeds.”
God told His faithful prophet Isaiah not to fear what everyone else was fearing, and not to call a conspiracy all that they called a conspiracy. Only fear God Isaiah was told, and it’s what we’re being told today. There are so many conspiracy theories out there about what’s going on. Some of the information is true, but it is, “GOD, WHO HAS RULING AUTHORITY OVER THESE PLAGUES,” not the Illuminati, or any secret society. (Ecclesiastes 7:13-14 Isaiah 45:7)
Death, doom, darkness, anguish, great fear, mourning, fire, and famine has been prophesied throughout scripture to come upon the wealthiest parts of the world in the last days. (Revelation 18:8-11) Why? For the same reason it happened in Isaiah’s day: mankind’s great rebellion against God. You don’t keep giving the middle finger day after day year after year to The Creator Of Heaven And Earth and expect nothing to happen.🤔
You and I dear church need to FEAR GOD AND GIVE HIM GLORY! And fear nothing else! Acknowledge, “GOD, WHO HAS RULING AUTHORITY OVER THESE PLAGUES.” Recognize the time of the end we are living in, it was foretold long ago. (Matthew chapter 24, Mark chapter 13, Luke chapter 21) Now it is here!😊
Luke 21:28 NET “But when these things begin to happen, stand up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”😃
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Proverbs 2:14 KJV “Who REJOICE TO DO EVIL, and delight in the frowardness of the wicked.”
Proverbs 6:14 KJV “Frowardness is in his heart, he DEVISETH MISCHIEF CONTINUALLY; he soweth discord.”
Cunning is the talent of the weak, lazy, froward person. Do not underestimate them just because you can easily see through them. They are ALWAYS plotting evil ALL THE TIME. They are always planning someone’s downfall, especially the righteous. They use artful evil tricks because they are weak and lazy; they have no other power. I’ve met people with noticeable physical and mental disabilities who were the most wicked people ever! Oh how they know how to play the victim role; the, “feel sorry for me,” game in front of others. They grated folks while nobody was looking hoping to get a retaliatory response so that when others did look they would say, ‘Why is he/she picking on that weaker person?’🤔
The perverse, weak, lazy person has no real power which is why they must solicit the services of others in their attacks. They may be weak and lazy but they have experience at mischief and deceiving others. DO NOT underestimate them. And .…..
When you and I retaliate in anger at the wicked oddly enough they look to be in the right. We’re the ones whose hot anger is on display. No, no one saw what he/she did or said to you first. All they see is us throwing a tantrum. This makes the wicked person rejoice inside. Sometimes they’ll even look at us with an evil smirk once they’ve gotten us all riled up; “Mission accomplished, all too easy,” is what they say to themselves. But we don’t have to play and lose at that game. Remember, the person who responds in anger loses:
James 1:20 NIV “Because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.”
Proverbs 15:1 NIV “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”
Ephesians 6:12 KJV “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”👽
THE UNSEEN ENEMY
One of the first steps to dealing with any problem is being able to see the problem. You and I aren’t simply dealing with wicked human beings here. We are battling evil, wicked, unseen spirit forces!👽 These are the main reason why we should never underestimate our enemies. The people are merely puppets of these unseen evil forces. Once we recognize this sleight of hand it becomes easier to deal with contentious people, because we are aware of what’s going on. The Bible says, ‘The discretion of a man makes him slow to anger.’ (Proverbs 19:11)
We may even find ourselves praying for our human foes as Jesus commands us to. Then our reactions to the goading of our enemies becomes totally different, totally opposite of what they were expecting: WRATH! In fact our foes become bewildered and blown away by the fact that their voodoo isn’t working on us; they can’t make us mad.😡 This brings praise to God as our mild tempered conduct witnesses to them and others. It shows them and others that God’s power is way more powerful than their wicked influences. Some figure out exactly why their witchcraft isn’t working on us: JESUS!😊
Matthew 5:43-48 NET “You have heard that it was said, ‘ Love your neighbor ’ and ‘hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, LOVE YOUR ENEMY and PRAY FOR THOSE WHO PERSECUTE YOU, so that you may BE LIKE YOUR FATHER IN HEAVEN, since he causes the sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Even the tax collectors do the same, don’t they? And if you only greet your brothers, what more do you do? Even the Gentiles do the same, don’t they? So then, be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”😊
It is demons who are behind wicked, annoying human beings. It is mainly they who are trying to get us to NOT, ‘BE LIKE OUR FATHER IN HEAVEN.’ See the trick?👽 If they can use human puppets and get us to hold grudges, live in anger, unforgiveness, wrath, hatred, etcetera, they win! (Matthew 6:14-15) They have successfully gotten us to throw away our own souls. Let’s be smart. Let’s ‘BE LIKE OUR FATHER IN HEAVEN.’ Let’s have mercy on people who have been taken captive by the devil, hoping that God will grant them repentance and salvation. (2 Timothy 2:25-26) The reward is oh so great.😊
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Philippians 3:20 NLT “But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are EAGERLY WAITING FOR HIM to return as our Savior.”
Where in the Bible are we told to intently look for antichrists, or the antichrist? Nowhere. Where are we told in the Bible to eagerly await and look for the real Jesus Christ and His return? Multiple places in scripture. Many Christians seem to be fascinated with who, “The Antichrist,” is. They appear to be looking for this guy way more than they are seeking the real true Christ. What good is it if I know who antichrist is and I don’t know the real Christ?
Many feel their intense search for, “The Antichrist,” is justified because if they can figure out who this antichrist is they will have a better understanding of when Jesus will return. Hence they view seeking antichrist’s identity as synonymous with the return of Jesus Christ. But Jesus tells us plainly how to understand when he will return. (Read Matthew chapter 24 Mark chapter 13 and Luke chapter 21)
Again, if I don’t know and understand who the real Jesus Christ is through an intimate, personal relationship with Him, what good is it to know who the Antichrist is? I will still be judged and condemned with the rest of the world.😰 I find it very interesting that the phrase, “The Antichrist,” is being inserted in many passages of scripture where it does not appear. And this is being done by many well known and well meaning Bible teachers. These same teachers will say that we should not go beyond what is written, or put any man’s word above the written word of Almighty God as stated in 1 Corinthians 4:6.
1 Corinthins 4:6 KJV “And these things, brethren, I have in a figure transferred to myself and to Apollos for your sakes; that ye might learn in us NOT TO THINK OF MEN ABOVE THAT WHICH IS WRITTEN, that no one of you be puffed up for one against another.”
The scripture clearly says that we should, “not think of men [any human being] above that which is written.” Let us obey God and not human personalities. We are told in the Bible to TEST EVERYTHING, no matter who says it. (1 Thessalonians 5:21 Acts 17:11) As we are all growing in our relationship with God and our knowledge of Him it shouldn’t surprise us that the best of us get it wrong sometimes. Job, the most righteous man in all the earth was taught a few lessons by a much younger lad named Elihu. The older prophet Samuel when he went to the house of Jesse to anoint the Lord’s next king over Israel thought that it was one of David’s brothers because of how good looking he was. But God told Samuel he wasn’t the one the Lord chose. Aaron, Moses’ brother and fellow servant of God literally made a golden calf; an idol, for the people to worship. Oh how we all do sin and fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23) So don’t let it be a huge surprise if we or anyone of us need a few tweaks when it comes to our doctrine.😊
As established we need to know Jesus Christ intimately way more than anything else. Then we won’t get the mark of the beast, or worship His image, or worship antichrist, etcetera. More importantly we won’t miss out on the return of the real Christ.
Hebrews 12:2 NLT “We do this by KEEPING OUR EYES ON JESUS [not antichrist], the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.”
NOW WHO IS ANTICHRIST?
The Bible tells us plainly who and what antichrist is: Here are the only 4 places in the Bible where the word antichrist is ever used. Read them, study them, and study the surrounding contexts of scripture. And remember 1 Corinthians 4:6, “NOT TO THINK OF MEN ABOVE THAT WHICH IS WRITTEN.”
1 1 John 2:18 KJV “Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, EVEN NOW THERE ARE MANY ANTICHRISTS; whereby we know that it is the last time.”
My friends that was written about 2000 years ago. And God said, “EVEN NOW there are MANY ANTICHRISTS,” not just one. Antichrists (with an “S” on the end meaning more than one) have been around for a while.🤔
2 1 John 2:22 KJV “Who is a liar but HE THAT DENIETH THAT JESUS IS THE CHRIST? HE IS ANTICHRIST, that denieth the Father and the Son.”
God clearly says anyone who denies that Jesus is the Christ; the Messiah, the Savior of the world, that person is antichrist! WOW!😳 There’s a whole lot of antichrists running around, aren’t there? Not just one. We interact with antichrists everyday; at work, at school, etcetera. Some of us even live with antichrists. But do not fear.
3 1 John 4:3 KJV “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.”
Here God says that antichrist is a SPIRIT.😳 A spirit that says Jesus Christ; the Messiah, the savior of the world did not come. Isn’t this spirit in so many folks today? Some say he was just a great prophet and not the Messiah. Others say Jesus is just a fairy tale. And others deny Him in other ways. All these have THE SPIRIT OF ANTICHRIST and are antichrists the Bible says.
4 2 John 1:7 KJV “For MANY DECEIVERS are entered into the world, WHO CONFESS NOT THAT JESUS CHRIST IS COME in the flesh. THIS IS A DECEIVER AND AN ANTICHRIST.”
Do you see who antichrist is? So why are so many so focused on just one guy who’s supposed to arrive on the scene? One reason is because many Bible teachers are inserting the phrase, “The Antichrist,” in passages of scripture where God never put it.
“THE ANTICHRIST” IS THIS PHRASE SCRIPTURALLY CORRECT?
God tells us again in 2 John 1:7 that antichrists are deceivers who deny the coming of Jesus Christ; the Messiah, the true Savior of the world. ANYONE who denies Jesus “THIS IS A DECEIVER AND AN ANTICHRIST,” 2 John 1:7 says. Did you notice that scripture uses the phrase, “AN ANTICHRIST,” and not, “THE ANTICHRIST?” Did you also notice that NOWHERE in the only 4 places in the Bible where the word, “Antichrist,” appears do you see the phrase, “THE ANTICHRIST,” meaning only one? Instead you saw written in God’s word that there are MANY ANTICHRIST DECEIVERS. You also saw that antichrist is a SPIRIT. And, “THAT SPIRIT OF ANTICHRIST,” has already been in the world for a long time.
REMEMBER WE SOMETIMES GET IT TWISTED
In 2 Thessalonians chapter 2 we see, “AN ANTICHRIST,” that God calls The Man Of Sin, The Son Of Perdition, The Lawless One, or The Man Of Lawlessness. But nowhere in that passage is he called, “THE ANTICHRIST.” That would contradict everything else the Bible says about antichrists. Isn’t it better to stick to what is written in God’s word and call a thing what He calls it? Some will say I’m playing semantics here. I will say adding words and phrases in the Bible where they do not appear is very dangerous! It changes the whole meaning of what is written. It causes confusion in the body of Christ.
If great servants of God like Job, Aaron, the prophet Samuel, and many others needed tweaking in their beliefs and doctrine are we so proud to think we never will? I know, some are thinking, “There’s a Bible teacher I really like who constantly uses the phrase THE ANTICHRIST where it’s not specifically written in scripture but it’s not that bad, is it?” I have quite a few Bible teachers I’ve enjoyed listening to as well who insert the phrase where it’s not written in scripture too. All I can do is encourage you and myself to obey WHAT IS WRITTEN. 1 Corinthians 4:6 says, “NOT TO THINK OF MEN ABOVE THAT WHICH IS WRITTEN.” (KJV)
THEY ARE ANTICHRISTS
The rider on the white horse in Revelation chapter 6, the beast in Revelation chapter 13, the beasts in the book of Daniel and so on are all referred to as, “THE ANTICHRIST,” by many. Again, that phrase cannot be found anywhere in the entire Bible. I understand why many insert the phrase in certain Bible passages, because these guys (the beast the son of perdition and the rider on the white horse) are all indeed vicious antichrists! We’ve just become so accustomed to using the phrase when speaking about them. We’ve heard many we respect do it. But let’s be honest; the Bible never called them, “THE ANTICHRIST,” meaning the only one. They are one of many, even if they are bigger antichrists than others.
As earlier stated, some of us work with, go to school with, even share the same house with antichrists everyday. And these things are necessary. But some of us have even befriended antichrists unnecessarily. (1 Corinthians 15:33) Sadly many Christians wouldn’t know an antichrist if he/she bit them because they have been so deceived into looking for one main character to arrive on the scene.😳 “That spirit of antichrist,” is indeed deceiving and conquering many (Revelation 6:1-2) including Christians. False teaching is largely to blame for this. Do you see why it is so important to stick to exactly what is written?🤔
Let us stick to what is written please on this matter and all issues. The beast in the book of Revelation chapter 13 is called, The Beast. The son of perdition in 2 Thessalonians chapter 2 is called, The Son Of Perdition. The lawless one is called, The Lawless One. The beasts in the book of Daniel are called Beasts. The rider on the white horse in Revelation chapter 6 is called The Rider On The White Horse. These are all antichrists! Yes they are! But NOT THE ONLY ONE. Never in scripture do we see these two words, “THE ANTICHRIST,” joined together when talking about them.
THE MOST IMPORTANT THING
More importantly let us remember what binds us all together as God’s children. It is not who knows and can explain certain doctrines better than others, or who has the most knowledge, etcetera. What joins us all together is Jesus Christ Himself. We are all members of His body called to love one another which transcends all knowledge and all wisdom.😄
Ephesians 4:16 NIV “From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.”
1 Corinthians 13:1-3 RSV “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.”
John 13:35 KJV “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”
Colossians 3:12-14 GNT “You are the people of God; he loved you and chose you for his own. So then, you must clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Be tolerant with one another and forgive one another whenever any of you has a complaint against someone else. You must forgive one another just as the Lord has forgiven you. And to all these qualities add love, which binds all things together in perfect unity.”
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