Where is the Antichrist in the Bible? Many people want to know. Another question that gets asked: Who is the Antichrist?
There’s been an explosion of interest about Antichrist prophecy over the last few years.
World events have been taking place in a way that conforms to ancient Bible prophecies of the End Times in both the Old Testament and the New Testament and the time is coming soon for the revealing of the Antichrist.
These events have been taking place at an increasing rate for decades.
The Antichrist plays a huge role in all of this, but there are many other important characters in End Times events.
We can also discuss some of them.
So where is Antichrist in the Bible?
The Antichrist is mentioned by name in 1 John 2:18 and 1 John 4:3, and in Revelation 13:1 and 16:3 by his nickname “the beast.” He is also referred to as the beast in Daniel 7:7-8, while 2 Thessalonians 2:3 calls him the “man of lawlessness.” Daniel 9:27 calls him “the desolator” and Matthew 24:15 calls him the “abomination of desolation.”
Here’s a chart that shows the names the Bible uses to describe Antichrist:
|1 John 2:18||Antichrist|
|1 John 4:3||Antichrist|
|Matthew 24:15||The abomination of desolation|
|Revelation 13:1||The Beast|
|Revelation 16:3||The Beast|
|Daniel 7:7-8||The Beast|
|2 Thessalonians 2:3||Man of Lawlessness|
|Daniel 9:27||The Desolator|
The Bible tells us about Antichrist in both Old Testament and the New Testament. It gives us many details about him, so he must be pretty important.
Most of the story has already been foretold about who is the Antichrist in the Bible.
Bible scholars have noted the Bible’s extraordinary record of foretelling future events, so students of the Bible take the Antichrist very seriously as a character that will come on the scene of world history just as it says.
Why does the Bible have such an amazing record of foretelling future events?
Because it has always been right.
The Bible foretold many ancient events –including the birth of Jesus Christ. But it has even foretold many contemporary events.
Here is a small sampling of recent events foretold by the Bible:
Israel became a nation on May 14, 1948, miraculously fulfilling the prophecy of Ezekiel 37 written around 570 BC –more than 2500 years before 1948!
Ezekiel 37 prophecies –in 570 BC– the return of Israel to her homeland after an extended absence.
It is to happen at a time when all hope is gone.
This prophecy is amazingly clear and you can read the entire chapter of Ezekiel 37 here.
The city of Jerusalem was added back to Israel in 1967 when Israeli forces captured the city from the Jordanian army during the 6 Day War.
Jerusalem was internationally recognized in 2017 when the United States declared it the eternal capital of Israel by moving the US embassy there.
In 1978, Iran moved from being Israel’s ally to being her adversary. This placed Iran in accord with the prophecy from Ezekiel 38.
So the stage is set for Iran to join with her allies Russia and Turkey –also prophesied in Ezekiel 38- to attack Israel and suffer a devastating and humiliating loss at the hand of God himself.
God taunts Iran, Russia and their allies in Ezekiel 38, warning them of the judgment he is bringing -telling Iran that he will “put a hook in your jaw” (38:4) “against the land of Israel” (v.18).
Then God says:
“With pestilence and bloodshed I will enter into judgment with him, and I will rain upon him and his hordes and the many peoples who are with him torrential rains and hailstones, fire and sulfur.”Ezekiel 38:22, ESV
Why should we believe Ezekiel 38 will happen? Because we’ve already watched Ezekiel 37 unfold over the last 100 years with amazing accuracy.
Top scholars have been watching these relationships for decades.
The recent Abraham accords signed in late 2020 and early 2021 between Israel and many Sunni Arab nations also perfectly aligns with the prophecy of Ezekiel.
Ezekiel gives a list of nations that will be allied for and against Israel. The nations have been aligning with Ezekiel very precisely over the last few years!
The word of the Lord came to me: 2 “Son of man, set your face toward Gog, of the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech[a] and Tubal, and prophesy against him 3 and say, Thus says the Lord God: Behold, I am against you, O Gog, chief prince of Meshech[b] and Tubal. 4 And I will turn you about and put hooks into your jaws, and I will bring you out, and all your army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed in full armor, a great host, all of them with buckler and shield, wielding swords. 5 Persia, Cush, and Put are with them, all of them with shield and helmet; 6 Gomer and all his hordes; Beth-togarmah from the uttermost parts of the north with all his hordes—many peoples are with you.
And it all sets the stage for the emergence of the Antichrist who is prophesied to burst on the scene in the fullness of time.
Where is Antichrist Explained in the Bible
The Antichrist is against everything that Jesus Christ is for.
He is the opposite of Christ. That’s why he’s called the Antichrist.
When he bursts on the scene, he will captivate the world with his poise and diplomatic brilliance -for three-and-a-half years.
He will be bright and engaging –and he will have just the right solution for everything.
He will gain the trust of many of the strongest leaders and his political rise to power will be a real phenomenon.
How do we know? Because he will negotiate a seven-year peace deal with Israel that he will break at the 3-1/2 year mark -exactly halfway through.
That’s why it is called the Great Tribulation.
The Antichrist is allied with his spiritual father Satan and the False Prophet.
Together this unholy trinity mimics the Holy Trinity of God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Now Satan once had another name. It was a beautiful and glorious name.
Satan (Satan means adversary) was God’s brightest, most magnificent and most powerful angel. His name was Lucifer, the Angel of Light.
When he rebelled against God, he brought the ultimate darkness.
So Antichrist is like his spiritual father. He appears at first as a bright man, but soon his true character is revealed since he is clearly allied with the forces of darkness.
And he will lie like his father Satan who is the Father of Lies. –John 8:44, ESV
The false prophet will support Antichrist. He will be his right-hand man –his spokesman –his press secretary.
Do you want to study the Antichrist in the context of other End Times events? Bible scholar, pastor and teacher John MacArthur wrote “Revelation, the Christian’s Ultimate Victory.” I’m studying it with my church home group right now, and I’m amazed at how clear Revelation is after reading MacArthur’s book. You can take a look at this powerful book/study guide on Amazon by clicking here.
Mark Hitchcock is another very reputable End Times scholar. I’m using his “101 Answers to Questions About the Book of Revelation” (Amazon link) as a companion to MacArthur’s book in our Bible study, and I just love how he organizes the material so well.
Where is the Antichrist from?
The passages above from the book of Daniel tell us Antichrist will be linked in some way to the ancient Roman Empire even though it occurs in modern times.
He will appear like a little horn growing out of 10 horns. (Daniel 7:8) In the Bible, a horn is a sign of power and strength.
Many other commentators have opined about the European Union becoming ready to host the Antichrist as its leader.
And there are many good things that support this view.
But a mostly-forgotten part of the old Roman Empire is the Eastern half.
What westerners think of as the Roman Empire is mostly what we call Western Europe. But the Empire split into two pieces just as Daniel said.
The Eastern capital was Constantinople.
Today we call it Istanbul, Turkey. So it is possible for Antichrist to rise from this area as well -including areas as far east as Syria and Iraq.
Antichrist will appear as a great world leader for a short time. But once he consolidates his power, he will show his true colors.
He will reveal that he is truly brutal, ruthless, and lawless. This is why his nickname –the beast- fits him so well.
God even mocks the Antichrist by giving him his own special number.
Maybe you’ve heard of it. It’s the number 666. You can read here how God mocks him with this number.
You can read more about what God thinks of the Antichrist here.
His rise -and his exploits- will reveal Antichrist’s supernatural origin. He will exercise powers that are definitely not normal.
But what’s worse is this: The Antichrist doesn’t just want to be equal to God. He wants to destroy God and everything about God.
This arrogance will bring his downfall. For him, when Jesus Christ arrives on the scene, it will be the Handwriting on the Wall.
Let’s go a little deeper.
Though the Antichrist is not mentioned the same way in other places in the Bible as we see in Revelation and John, he is still very much there and we can learn so much about him.
Every field of endeavor has clear parts that everybody can see.
And it also has more subtle points that aren’t so obvious.
This is true of everything from art and science to your favorite sport. NFL football, for instance.
There will always be some things –some nuances- that few folks will ever notice.
And so it is with Antichrist. We saw earlier in 2 Thessalonians 2:3 that he is a man of lawlessness.
We also read that there are signposts of the end times:
But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. 2 For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, 4 treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.
We pick up hints from these descriptions of the Beast from these and other Antichrist verses.
And based on the above quote from 2 Timothy we see Antichrist will have plenty of company. Many people in that age will be allied with him.
Then we find that there are other men of lawlessness in both the New Testament and the Old Testament.
Bible scholars have studied these ancient despots for centuries and have spent plenty of time connecting the dots.
Many ancient rulers were despotic like the Antichrist. So are many modern rulers.
Here are a few names of ancient and modern rulers who were despotic enough to be like Antichrist:
Almost all the Roman Emperors, especially Nero, Titus, Caligula and Diocletian.
Mao Tse Tung
Studies of these remarkable despots give us greater insight into Antichrist synonyms such as the beast, man of perdition, and lawless one.
Bible scholars have studied these little antichrists for many years. Their studies give us a blueprint of Antichrist’s character.
We know he will be authoritarian and totalitarian. He will be intolerant of any viewpoint but his own.
For him, equality with God is never enough. He must display to the world that he is superior to God.
The very name “Antichrist” means he must take the place of God. But in the end, the true God still wins.
Antichrist will get his seven years of torment over the earth, but Jesus Christ will return as eternal victor and destroy Antichrist with the breath of his mouth.
But the Bible tells us Antichrist will also have a level of spiritual darkness far beyond anything we saw from the despotic rulers of the past.
Here are 10 ways to recognize the Antichrist:
1) He claims to be God and is worshipped
2) He will blaspheme God
3) He will display miraculous powers
4) He will come back from the dead to life
5) He will rule in total authority
6) He will control the world economy
7) He will desecrate the temple
8) He will attempt to destroy Israel
9) He will order all of earth’s armies to fight against Jesus Christ
10) At the end of the age he will be thrown into the Lake of Fire along with the False Prophet
11) And here’s the eleventh (bonus) way to recognize Antichrist: His number is 666 -and you can learn the Hidden Meaning of 666 that’s been hiding in plain view all along!
(List Adapted from Harvest Bible Chapel)
Where is Antichrist Now?
We will not know where Antichrist is until he bursts on the scene.
But based on studies of the despots listed above, we know that Satan has been preparing potential Antichrists for generations.
Satan must always have a candidate Antichrist ready to go because he doesn’t know the Father’s timing.
And we ourselves do not know the day or the hour. But because of the faithfulness of the Bible we do know the season.