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THEOLOGY > Future > The End of the Age > The Antichrist > Demise of Antichrist       


Antichrist will arise and will dominate international events for a specific time, but his demise is predicted and after a determined time will take place. His final judgment is discussed in Daniel, II Thessalonians, and the Revelation.

His reign will be brief. John says: “He was given authority to continue for forty-two months” (Rev. 13:5), a time period that is mention in at least three different ways in the Revelation:

1. forty-two months (11:2; 13:5);

2. 1,260 days (11:3; 12:6; 30 days to a month equal forty-two months or 1,260 days);

3. a time, times, and half a time (12:14; this period is equal to forty-two months or 1,260 days).

Each of the above time references are associated with Daniel’s seventieth week (9:27; each week is equal to seven yrs., half of which would be forty-two months, 1,260 days, or a time, and times, and half a time).  Many futurists, or Premillennialists, equate this final week of Daniel with the Great Tribulation and with the Antichrist: “He [the Antichrist] shall confirm a covenant with many for one week” (9:27). If this interpretation is accepted, then these passages combine to specify the relatively brief period of Antichrist’s influence.

From the instant he appears his days are numbered. He emerges and increases until he has  universal power and total rule over the nations; he controls commerce, and even requires worship of himself. But in a sense all of this is empty and false, because even as he ascends to prominence his demise is determined.

His reign will suddenly end. Just as quickly as his star rises, just that quickly it sets. His domination is brief and his end is swift. In connection with the Antichrist and the seventy weeks, Daniel speaks of “the consummation which is determined” (9:27 in the NKJV; or “the decreed end” in the ESV). The end of the age and the end of the Antichrist will suddenly come; it is determined, it is decreed.

In another passage Daniel appears to go beyond the near term historical process to the end-time developments relating to the Antichrist: “He shall prosper till the wrath has been accomplished” (11:36). In other words, the rule of Antichrist is brief and it is limited; he shall prosper “till.” And then the end will suddenly come.

His reign will end supernaturally. Paul states: “And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming” (II Thess. 2:8). God will bring him to an end.

For one who becomes so dominant, the manner of his end reveals the true nature and extent of his power in comparison to the God he defies and blasphemes; he will be consumed by “breath” and destroyed by “brightness.” But it is the breath of Christ and the brightness of the returning Lord, the One who is King of Kings and Lord of Lords (Rev. 19:16), the One “who is coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matt. 24:30).

In his end the Antichrist is shown to have no power, and his authority is revealed to be fragile and weak. The one who impressed the multitudes so that they exclaimed: “Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?” (Rev. 13:4) will be without defense against the Lord and His army. He will be simply and supernaturally captured and cast into the lake of fire. John was given a revelation of the miraculous conclusion of Antichrist’s rule:

And I saw the beast, the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army. Then the beast was captured and with him the false prophet . . . these two were cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone (Rev. 19:19-20).

The words of Gabriel are succinct and clear: “He shall be broken without human hands” (Dan. 8:25; while many see this as a reference to Antiochus Epiphanes, some equate the passage with the Antichrist).

A designation of Antichrist is “the son of perdition” (II Thess. 2:3; ESV has “destruction”); even in this designation is a statement of his coming ruin. The designation revels his destiny. His destruction will not be of his own doing—it will be the doing of God. It is God who has labeled him “the son of perdition.”

His demise will be eternal. John writes: “The devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever” (Rev. 20:10). His dominion will be consumed and taken away; it will be destroyed forever (Dan. 7:26).

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