Will The Antichrist Be A Vessel For Satan's Use Or Will He Make A Deal With The Devil?
With the Irish vote pointing toward a 'yes' vote, preparations for the future are in full swing. Tony Blair is expected to be announced as the first European Union president by the end of this month, but not everyone is thrilled about the choice. In fact, the consensus is he's only getting the job due to a lack of good candidates who have global clout. Only time will tell as to what kind of splash he will make on the international scene.
I have been getting a few questions regarding the Antichrist lately. Many seem to believe that they will be able to identify him by his characteristics before the rapture of the church. Personally, I do not believe the Bible supports that the Antichrist will be identifiable before he is revealed. II Thessalonians 2:3-7 leads one to believe that the falling away must occur first then the Antichrist will be revealed. I believe the falling away to be the rapture of the church, but we will save that argument for another time.
Following the rapture of the church, Satan will choose his Antichrist and false prophet. It's possible that he may have already made his selections and is merely working behind the scenes to position his future world leaders. Does that mean that Satan knows the day he is living in? Not necessarily! He may unknowingly be in the planning stage of his next attempt of taking over the world. But when the rapture takes place, I believe it will take him completely by surprise. When this happens, he will either continue with his plan (if he has selected his rulers) or immediately select his Antichrist and false prophet.
Here's an interesting question. At this time, does the Antichrist know who he is? I don't believe that he does, and certainly, at this very moment, I would doubt seriously that he sees himself as an evil person. Many have been forecast to be the Antichrist, and I can assure you, every single candidate would laugh at the notion of someone actually believing that they could be the future Antichrist. I'm sure for example, Tony Blair has been made aware that some have predicted that he may be the Antichrist. Some predicted that it would be George W. Bush, but the fact that every so-called expert has been miserably wrong is not my point. When the Antichrist rises, and he will, he will be possessed by Satan. From that point on he will be a completely changed man. However unproductive he may have been before that day will pass away and he will immediately become a political, military, and financial superstar, the likes of which the world has never seen. But he will also personify the very depths of deception and evil. But at this time, I believe he is oblivious to his future.
There is no question in my mind that the Antichrist is alive today and in a prominent leadership position. However, at this point, it is unlikely that he possesses any special skills or has any idea on how to bring about peace to the Middle East or the world. But one day soon, this person will be led by Satan and then possessed (Revelation 12:13-17), and it might not necessarily be of his own free will. I'm sure that statement caught the attention of many who are reading this. The fact of the matter is, Satan doesn't have to have permission to possess a vessel that is already his...and that comprises the majority of the world. Many are of the assumption that the Antichrist will make some sort of deal with the devil in order to achieve world fame and power (and he might), but there's simply no biblical proof to support this theory.
Case in point, let's take Judas for example. Jesus, from the beginning, knew that Judas would one day betray Him, but it's very unlikely that Judas knew much, if anything, up until just before the end. Certainly, he was being controlled by Satan (for how long is unknown), but was not possessed until just prior to the Passover (Luke 22:3; John 13:27). Conventional Christian thought is that demon possession usually is a result of dabbling in the occult world, therefore, opening one's self up to possible possession. But the truth of the matter is, Judas was the closest vessel within Jesus' inner circle that Satan could possess and eventually betray Him. Many would say that Judas betrayed Jesus out of greed for money. After all, the Bible is clear that he was a thief who regularly stole from the treasury bag (John 12:6). But I find this fact to speak more about his true heart as to whether he was a real follower of Christ. If this is the case, he would be an obvious choice for Satan to work through in order to complete his plan.
I also find it interesting that he didn't actually betray Jesus until after he was possessed by Satan and was quite remorseful following the betrayal. Here is the Biblical account of the events following Christ's betrayal.
"Then Judas, which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood. And they said, What is that to us? See thou to that. And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself." (Matthew 27:3-5)
It's unknown what may have been the source of Judas' guilt. It could have stemmed from the reaction of the apostles who understandably would have considered him a traitor, or once Satan left his body, he may have come to his senses. I tend to believe the latter. But whatever caused his belated change of heart scripture leads us to believe that he did not repent unto salvation. (Acts 1:25)
Whether or not Judas was simply a vessel Satan conveniently used, and in the end, discarded to meet his purpose is unknown, but it's certainly not out of the realm of possibility. With that thought in mind...It's also not unthinkable that Satan may conveniently choose one of his many world leaders closest to the peace process, mold him, and eventually possess him for the sole purpose of making peace with Israel, breaking the covenant (Daniel 9:27), and in the end, declaring himself to be God.
Will the future Antichrist merely be nothing more than a vessel Satan chooses to possess to meet his purpose or will he be a willing participant hungry for fame and power? Only time will tell as we head closer to the final hour.
Are you ready to meet the Lord? If not, your time is running out!
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