Soon, the Church will be raptured out of here and the world we leave behind will be given the modern-day name of Antichrist
The “last time” that John mentions has been going on for nearly 2,000 years now, and amazingly, it is getting ready to come to it’s final, prophetical conclusion. The Church Age, or the Age of Grace, is about to be done, and it will see it’s climax in an event called the Pretribulation Rapture of the Church. This event will usher in what the prophet Jeremiah saw and called to be the Time of Jacob’s Trouble.
“Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.” 1 John 2:18 (KJV)
The Pretribulation Rapture of the Church is not the same event as the Second Coming of Jesus Christ for reasons previously mentioned here. The Apostle Paul, in 2 Thessalonians, gives us two very important clues on the timing of the Rapture, and, about the identity of the Antichrist.
The two things that must precede the Pretrib Rapture of the Church
“Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.” 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4 (KJV)
Now, before we go any further, make sure that you are checking these references using the Authorized Version King James 1611 Holy Bible. Because if you aren’t, you will not be able to make these connections. Nearly all the modern Bibles remove words and verses, thereby changing the meanings and rendering a proper conclusion impossible. I will show you exactly what I mean at the end of this teaching.
So look at what the Holy Spirit through Paul is saying here, two things need to happen right before the Rapture of the Church. One, there has to be a great falling away from the truth. You can check that off the list as that is happening right now. False teachers abound like never before, Bible doctrine is no longer preached, and the Church service has become indistinguishable from your average night at the club. Christianity has become a Laodicean “churchianity” and the sheep are dying from malnutrition. The second thing Paul mentions is that the man of sin, the Antichrist, must be revealed. Paul says that whoever he is, he is the son of perdition. Find him, and you find the Antichrist.
“Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;” Titus 2:13 (KJV)
As Christians, we are commanded to wait and look for the Glorious Appearing of the Lord Jesus Christ in the clouds to rapture us up and out of here, and so we do. No where in Scripture does it command Christians to look for the Antichrist. But God, in His amazing mercy towards us, wants us to have as much information as possible as we battle the world, the flesh and the Devil. We are not ignorant of the Enemy’s devices, and knowing Scripture prepares us for battle. So using Paul’s clues, let’s take a ride through the Bible and see about this son of perdition.
“While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.” John 17:12 (KJV)
No surprise that our search leads us back to John, Paul and John are tag-team prophecy warriors who back each other up, and here we seeing Jesus talking about the son of perdition. It is the same son of perdition that Paul referenced, none other than Judas Iscariot, the Betrayer. But there’s more….
“Jesus answered, He it is, to whom I shall give a sop, when I have dipped it. And when he had dipped the sop, he gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon.” John 13:26 (KJV)
Here we have Judas in the act of betrayal, and it is a stunning example of why we only use the King James Bible. Jesus is talking about handing a “sop” to someone, and then dipping it in a dish. Anyone who has ever spent time with Italian people who can cook know exactly what a sop is. My friend Andy’s mom used to make what Italians call “gravy”, or spaghetti sauce, and it would simmer on the stove for hours. When it was close to done, we would take a fresh piece of Italian bread and dip it in the pot, and we would “sop it up”. Delicious! Now do you see what a sop is? It is a piece of bread for dipping in sauce or olive oil. The NIV renders the sop of John 13:26 as “bread”, and in doing so, throws one of the biggest prophecy clues right out the window. Yes, a sop is a piece of bread – BUT – it is much more than that. Bread is just bread , but a sop is a clue.
S = Son | O = Of | P = Perdition. Bam! After 23 years of knowing this and teaching this to people it still sends chills down my spine. God is so good.
Now do you see why we say God has preserved His word in the KJV? But there’s more, we are not done yet.
“That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place.” Acts 1:25 (KJV)
When Judas killed himself after the world’s greatest betrayal, he didn’t simply go to Hell, not at all. He went to his own, very special holding area that we see mentioned in Acts 1:25. One reason for this special place is because God is not done with him just yet. In the Time of Jacob’s Trouble, Judas is going to come back as the Antichrist. Why? Because Paul already told you he would in 2 Thessalonians, remember? “and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;“. In fact, lots of people make a reappearance. Moses and Elijah come back as the Two Witnesses, Judas comes back as the Antichrist, and of course, Jesus comes back as Himself. Yay!
That’s My King, Do You Know Him?
“He’s enduringly strong. He’s entirely sincere. He’s eternally steadfast. He’s immortally graceful. He’s imperially powerful. He’s impartially merciful. That’s my King. He’s God’s Son. He’s the sinner’s saviour. He’s the centerpiece of civilization. He stands alone in Himself. He’s honest. He’s unique. He’s unparalleled. He’s unprecedented. He’s supreme. He’s pre-eminent. He’s the grandest idea in literature. He’s the highest personality in philosophy. He’s the supreme problem in higher criticism. He’s the fundamental doctrine of historic theology. He’s the carnal necessity of spiritual religion. That’s my King.” SM Lockridge Detroit, 1976
Now we are right back where we started, having compared Scripture with Scripture, and have let the Bible tell us who the identity of Antichrist is. Judas Iscariot. Do we need to know his modern-day name in 2015? No, not at all. Christians are not told to look for the Antichrist, knowing his name today wouldn’t do us much good anyway. Soon, the Church will be raptured out of here and the world we leave behind will be given the modern-day name of Antichrist, yes, but they will not have the understanding of prophecy that you and I have. The Bible declares that unsaved, non-born again people cannot receive God’s word:
“But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” 1 Corinthians 2:14 (KJV)
Yes, people in the Tribulation will have the Antichrist’s 21st Century name – BUT – they will not have his connection to Judas Iscariot, and because of that will worship him as the Messiah. Ugh, what a stinking mess that will be. Aren’t you glad you are going to miss all that because you are saved, born again, Blood washed and headed to Heaven?
I sure am!
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16 (KJV)