The essence of the Gospel is that the eternal Son of God became a man, paid for our sins with His blood, was crucified, buried, resurrected and is now seated as the glorified King of Kings at the right hand of the Father. As in the days of ancient greek theater, where actors hid their faces behind the iconic masks of tragedy and comedy, I believe there are two primary masks behind which the enemy hides himself today.
The spirit of anti-Christ paradoxically and simultaneously manifests with both the face of radical secularism and the face of radical religion! Since it offers no moral foundation and denies the existence of absolute truths, secularism always produces a society prone to perversion and debauchery in which every man feels free to live for his own pleasure according to his own personal perception of reality.
This is why the scriptures give many dire warnings regarding the godless world in which we live. Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. Thankfully, a message of hope still emerges from the darkness.
But you were washed , but you were sanctified , but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.
Take human sexuality and marriage for example. By blurring gender lines, as society is so militantly doing today, the spirit of anti-Christ is simply attempting to deface the image of God. The enemy is not just trying to rob couples their opportunity to experience personal marital bliss. See Ephesians As important as it is for Christians to vote and involve themselves in the democratic process, for example, politics will never be the answer.
Even President John Adams said back in , "We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other. Our priority should be to get people right with God instead of just trying to get them to vote right.
It is our responsibility to hold fast to Him and allow his light to shine forth. Jesus truly is the answer for the world today! If the spirit of the anti Christ's primary purpose is to oppose the person of Jesus-Christ, it should be obvious that Church's, primary purpose is to proclaim Him!
Attorney General William Barr recenly addressed an audience at Notre Dame regarding the attacks of secularists upon our society. Secular forces and their allies have marshaled all the forces of mass communication, popular culture, the entertainment industry, and academia, in an unremitting assault on religion and traditional values. For most people of faith, both of these statements sound good and, in many ways, are true! Jesus was born into one of the most religious societies that has ever existed.
Dead religion can never replace a living relationship with the living Christ!
Religious lies are especially dangerous because, on the surface, they look so much like the truth. At the end of the day, the bottom line still comes back to Jesus Christ!
A religious person, without a genuine relationship with Christ is no better off than the atheist or agnostic without Christ. This time the stage was set for an open denial of the existence of God, for wholesale persecutions, and for the carefully planned murder by starvation of literally millions of peasants hostile to the new regime.
- How Millions Have Been Deceived;
- Who Were The Antichrists?.
- Who is the Antichrist??
The devil was not slow to realise, however, that even this could not destroy the religious feelings of the people. Accordingly, Communists embarked upon a policy of infiltration and dialectical argument dialogue. Communist agents were hand- picked and trained for the priesthood in Crimea and elsewhere; Catholic papers and journals were taken over and the Communists assumed an air of respectability in their relationships with Christians.
This is the stage reached in , and its success appears obvious.
However, appearances are deceptive, and this also will fail, and the Communists will revert to a policy of bloody destructions. This will be the fourth great attempt by the devil; it will not be confined to Russia as in , it will be world-wide. But it will fail also. That is why, having realised that atheistic Materialism was still powerless to destroy the Kingdom of Christ, the devil shall try yet a different scheme: he will raise Antichrist, not in order to deny the existence of God, but in order to be adored as God Himself.
For if the hearts of men cannot do without the notion of God, let us tell them that I am God. Such will be the purpose of the devil through Antichrist, and the Fathers of the Church tell us that it is so. Irenaeus "This accursed one is sent by the devil in order to lead men into error. Hildegard - private prophecy. He will win the support of many with gifts and money. He will sell himself to the devil and thereafter will have no guardian angel or conscience. Jerome "Dan, Moses said, is a lion's whelp; and in naming the tribe of Dan he declared clearly the tribe from which Antichrist is destined to spring.
Hippolytus "Dan shall Judge his people like another tribe in Israel. Let Dan be a snake in the way, a serpent in the path, that biteth the horse's heels that the rider may fall backwards. Hippolytus The Last Judgment will be preceded by the imposter Antichrist, who will try to deceive men in four ways: By a false exposition of Scripture, wherein he will try to prove that he is the Messiah promised by the Law.
By working miracles. By inflicting punishments.
Who Were The Antichrists? | Ronald Peters
Anselm "Antichrist will rule the world from Jerusalem, which he will make into a magnificent city. Anselm "For when he is come, and of his own accord concentrates in his own person the apostasy, and accomplishes whatever he shall do according to his own will and choice, sitting also in the Temple of God so that his dupes may adore him as the Christ Irenaeus "Antichrist will exceed in malice, perversity, lust, wickedness, impiety, and ruthlessness and barbarity all men that have ever disgraced human nature.
Hence St. Through his great power, deceit and malice he shall succeed in decoying or forcing to his worship two thirds of mankind; the remaining third part of men will continue true to the faith and worship of Jesus Christ most steadfastly.
But in his satanic rage and fury, Antichrist will persecute these brave and devout Christians during three years and a half, and torture them with such an extremity of barbarity, with all the old and newly invented instruments of pain, as to exceed all past persecutors of the Church combined.
He will oblige all his followers to bear impressed upon their foreheads or right hands the mark of the Beast and will starve to death all those who refuse to receive it. Cyril of Jerusalem "And the churches, too will wail with a mighty lamentation, because neither oblation nor incense is attended to, nor a service acceptable to God; but the sanctuaries of the churches will become like a garden-watcher's hut, and the Holy Body and Blood of Christ will not be shown in those days.
The public service of God shall be extinguished, psalmody shall cease, the reading of Scripture shall not be heard; but for men there shall be darkness and lamentation on lamentation, and woe on woe. At that time silver and gold shall be cast out in the streets, and none shall gather them; but all things shall be held an offence. For all shall be eager to escape and to hide and they shall not be able anywhere to find shelter from the woes of the Enemy; but as they carry his mark about them, they shall be readily recognised and declared to be his. There shall be fear outside, and trembling inside both by night and by day.
In the streets and in the houses there the dead shall lie; in the streets and in the houses there shall hunger and thirst be; in the streets there shall be tumults, and in the houses lamentations. And beauty of countenance shall be withered, for their forms shall be like those of the dead; and the beauty of women shall fade, and the desire of all men shall vanish.
But in spite of all this, not even then will the merciful and benignant God leave the race of men without some comfort; He will shorten even those days to the period of three years and a half, and He will curtail those times on account of the remnant of those who hide in the mountains and caves, that the phalanx of all those saints fail not utterly.
But these days shall run their course rapidly; and the kingdom of the Deceiver and Antichrist shall be promptly removed. And then, finally, in the twinkling of an eye shall the fashion of this world pass away, and the power of men shall be brought to naught, and all visible things shall be destroyed.
Coming to Grips with the Antichrist's New Age Roots
Hippolytus "By means of the events which shall occur in the time of Antichrist it is shown that he, being an apostate and a robber, is anxious to be adored as God; and that although a mere slave, he wishes to be proclaimed as a king. For he being endued with all the power of the devil, shall come, not as a righteous king, not as a legitimate king obedient to God but as an impious, unjust, and lawless one; as an iniquitous and murderous apostate; as a robber, concentrating in himself a satanic apostasy, and setting aside idols to persuade men that he himself is God.
Irenaeus "But he who reads this passage, even half asleep, cannot fail to see that the kingdom of the Antichrist shall fiercely, though for a short time, assail the Church before the Last Judgment of God has introduced the eternal reign of saints. For it is patent from the context that the time, times, and half a time, means a year, and two years, and half a year, that is to say, three years and a half.
Sometimes in Scripture the same thing is indicated by months. For though the word times seems to be used here in Latin in an indefinite manner, that is so only because the Latins have no dual, as the Greeks have, and as the Hebrews also are said to have. Times, therefore, is used for two times. It is a familiar theme in the conversations and hearts of the faithful, that in the last days before the Judgment, the Jews shall believe in the true Christ, that is, our Christ, thanks to this great and admirable prophet Elias who shall expound the Law to them.
For not without reason do we hope that before the coming of our Judge and Saviour Elias shall come, because we have good reason to believe that he is now alive; for as Scripture most distinctly informs us, he was taken up from this earth in a chariot of fire. When therefore, he is come, he shall give a spiritual explanation of the Law which the Jews at present understand carnally Augustine "During the three and a half years of Antichrist's reign God will send Henoch and Elias to help the Christians.
Benedict Note. But this is not a resurrection, for their bodies were changed and taken to heaven without going through death. John Chrysostom "Antichrist will heal the sick, raise the dead, restore sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf, speech to the dumb, raises storms and calms them, re-names mountains, make trees blossom and wither at a word, re-build the temple of Jerusalem, and make Jerusalem the capital city of the world with the vast wealth of hidden treasures.
Antichrist cannot work genuine miracles; he cannot give life back to the dead. But he can raise again those who appear to be dead according to human knowledge and experience, but are yet not really dead. He can also re-animate dead bodies by the power of Satan so as to make them appear alive.
As for his healing powers and his dominion over the elements and plants, this is not at all impossible for there is much more in the way of psychic powers of the natural order than is generally accepted. He will possess all these thanks to his master, the devil.
To us, of course such wonders appear to be miraculous but they are not so in the strict theological sense. Note that R. Maurus did not say "resurrect the dead", but "raise the dead", which is vastly different since the word resurrect, despite its etymological limitations, is generally understood as meaning "bring to life again", whilst the word raise need not imply this.
See also par. Patrick "Seven years before the Last Day the sea shall submerge Ireland in one inundation. Columbkille "The sea will come over Ireland seven years before the day of judgment. Nennius "The sea shall overwhelm Ireland seven years before the judgment. Maeltamhlacht, 7th century Note. This prophecy, which was made five centuries before the English began to subdue Ireland, is given here merely to confirm that ours are the Last Times, for Ireland is now an independent nation even though the Northern part is still under English control. At the end of this time Ireland will be delivered and the English in turn must suffer severe chastisements.
Ireland, however will be instrumental in bringing back the English to the unity of the Faith. Patrick, 12th century Note.