Summary: What does the antichrist spirit look like and how should we respond so that we are not led astray?
Text: 1 John 2:18-29
Title: How to spot an Antichrist
We are living in the period of time falling between the first and second coming of Jesus Christ. And if it was the last hour 2000 years ago then this may just be the final seconds before the second coming of Jesus Christ.
And if you know your Bible you know that the second coming of Christ is also the time of the coming of the Antichrist.
Even now many antichrists have come to preach against Christ, rival Christ or preach another Christ in order to try “to lead us astray.” (v26)
So who are the antichrists and what are we to do to prevent them leading us astray?
Who the antichrists are can be determined by examining the following relationships…
1.The antichrists relationship to Christ (v22-23)
2.The antichrists relationship to the church (19)
3.The antichrists relationship to the truth (v20)
4.The antichrists relationship to salvation (v25)
5.The antichrists relationship to right conduct (v29)
1. By far the biggest clue to identifying who are antichrists is by their relationship to Christ. (v22-23)
“Who is the liar? It is the man who denies that Jesus is the Christ. Such a man is the antichrist – he denies the Father and the Son. No one who denies the Son has the Father; whoever acknowledges the Son has the Father also.”
a. An antichrist by definition is someone who denies that Jesus is …equal to the Father
b. Where in these verses do we get the doctrine that Jesus is equal to the Father?
I see Jesus is the Christ. I see Jesus is the Son but I don’t see how it says that Jesus is equal to the Father.
c. The term “Son” is a term that John understood to mean “equal to the Father.” (See John 5:17-18)
“Jesus said to them, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too, am working.” For this reason the Jews tried all the harder to kill him; not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.”
d. Another place we see equality between the Father and the Son found is in the statements “No one who denies the Son has the Father; whoever acknowledges the Son has the Father also.”
Interpretation: Denying the Son is equal to denying the Father and acknowledging the Son is equal to acknowledging the Father.
e. John believed that Jesus was equal to the Father. (John 1:1)
“In the beginning was the word (Jesus) and the word was with God and the word was God.”
f. Therefore all non-Christian religions by definition fall into the category of antichrists because they deny that Jesus is equal to the Father.
But some so called “Christian” religions such as the Mormons, Jehovah Witnesses and the Unitarians also all deny that Jesus is equal to the Father.
2. The next clue to identifying who are antichrists is by their relationship to the church (v19)
“They went out from us, but they did not really belong to us. For if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us; but their going showed that none of them belonged to us.”
An antichrist is not going to belong or remain in a church that preaches Christ is equal to the Father. Preaching Jesus is equal to the Father offends them. They would rather belong in churches that preach a different Jesus or say nothing about Jesus. For example churches that leave out preaching on the blood of Jesus, the cross of Jesus, the worship of Jesus , the divinity of Jesus or the claims of Jesus such as being the only way, truth and life are controlled by an antichrist spirit.
Belonging to a Bible- believing church identifies a person as a genuine believer. The antichrists always have an easier time of making converts of those who don’t belong or remain in a church that preaches the true gospel of Jesus Christ.
3. Another clue to identifying who are antichrists is by their relationship to the truth. (v20)
“But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and all of you know the truth. I do not write to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it and because no lie comes from the truth.”
Who do the antichrists go looking for? They go looking for those that don’t know the truth. If you don’t know what is the truth then you also don’t know what is or is not a lie.
We have an anointing from the Holy One to know the truth. In other words we are made qualified by the Holy Spirit to know the truth. The ministry of the Holy Spirit is to lead us into the truth. The Holy Spirit will also bear witness to the truth.