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THEOLOGY > Future > The End of the Age > The Antichrist > Titles and Designations     


Titles and designations of the Antichrist are found in five books of the Bible, both in the Old and New Testaments. The titles and designations will be listed in the order of their appearance in the Canon and will be accompanied by brief comments:

“there was another horn, a little horn” (Dan. 7:8) – if this is a reference to Antichrist, then  it is the first reference in Scripture to him; the little horn arises within the ten horns that were on Daniel’s fourth beast, the beast that was dreadful and terrible; the little horn had eyes like a man and spoke great words against the Most High; additionally, he persecuted the saints, sought to change the law and seasons; in the end his kingdom was taken away from him and given to the saints.

“a little horn (Dan. 8:9) – while many see this as a reference to Antiochus Epiphanes, some equate the passage with the Antichrist, especially the last verses of the chapter; this little horn is part of Daniel’s vision of a ram from the east and a goat from the west; the little horn arises from one of the four horns that replace the large horn of the goat; Gabriel informs Daniel that the vision is for “the time of the end” (vs. 17, 18, 23); the little horn will destroy the saints and be against the Prince of princes; finally he will be broken without human hands.

“the prince who is to come” (Dan. 9:26) – this designation is used in the passage dealing with the seventy weeks; it announces that Messiah will be cut off, but not for Himself (obviously a reference to the crucifixion); after that the city (Jerusalem) and the sanctuary (Temple) will be destroyed “by the people of the prince who is to come” (an indication of the origin of the end-time Antichrist); additionally, the prince will make a covenant for one week (seven years).

“the king of the north” (Dan. 11:29-12:3) – while many see this as a reference to Antiochus Epiphanes, some equate the passage with the Antichrist, especially the last verses of the chapter; the king will exalt himself and speak blasphemies against the God of gods; at that time there shall be a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation (reminds of the Great Tribulation Jesus predicted in the Olivet Discourse).

“the Abomination of Desolation” (Matt. 24:15; see: Dan. 9:27; 11:31) – designation comes from Jesus in the Olivet Discourse; while some relate this passage exclusively to A.D. 70 and the Romans, others affirm that the deed of the Romans is a harbinger of the end-time deed of the Antichrist; Jesus connects the Abomination of Desolation with the Great Tribulation that will take place just before He returns; for this reason futurists project the reference to the end-time and connect it with the Antichrist.

“the man of lawlessness” (II Thess. 2:3 in the ESV; NKJV has “man of sin”) – the choice of either “lawlessness” (anomias) or “sin” (amartias) is dependent on the choice of manuscript evidence and is a minor consideration compared to the larger teaching regarding the character of the Antichrist; whether “lawlessness” or “sin” the result is still an evil person; Paul informed the Thessalonians that before the Lord returns and His followers are gathered to Him two events must take place: the Apostasy (rebellion or falling away) and the Antichrist must appear; but then the Antichrist will be destroyed by the Lord’s coming.

“the son of perdition” (II Thess. 2:3) – “perdition” is the Gr. word, apoleia, which speaks of “ruin” or “destruction”; in numerous passages eternal destruction is meant by this word (Matt. 7:13; Rom. 9:22; Phil. 1:28; I Tim. 6:19; II Pet. 2:1); in this designation, therefore, the destiny of the Antichrist is indicated.

“Antichrist” (I Jo. 2:18, 22; 4:3; II Jo. 7) – only in John’s writings is this well known designation used; “Antichrist” is composed of two words: “anti” and “Christ,” so the basic  concept is “against,” “over against,” or “opposed to”; therefore, the Antichrist is opposed to Christ, or sets himself against Christ; he is the opponent of Christ; according to John many antichrists will precede the final Antichrist; even in John’s day the spirit of antichrist was already at work, that spirit which will facilitate an environment, intellectually and morally, that will make possible the Antichrist.

“the beast” (Rev. 11:7, 12-17; 13:1-4; 19:19-20) – the designation used by John in the Revelation; John writes of his appearance, his deeds, and his demise; the beast is energized by Satan, arises to world dominance, blasphemes God and demands to be worshiped; without his mark no one will be able to buy or sell; many saints will be martyred; his reign will be brief and will suddenly and eternally end.

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