Is the Antichrist a Muslim?

Is the Antichrist a Muslim? – By Britt Gillette –

http://www.raptureready.com/featured/gillette/bg67.html

 
This is one of the questions I’m asked most often – especially in recent years.
 
For centuries, the overwhelming majority of those who have studied bible prophecy have claimed the Antichrist will come from a revived Roman Empire headquartered in Western Europe. But recent events in the Middle East, such as the rise of ISIS, have led some people to question that claim. They say the Antichrist will be a Muslim headquartered in the Middle East. Could this be true? Let’s examine what the Bible says.
 
The Muslim Antichrist Belief
 
Those who believe the Muslim Antichrist vary in the reasons for their belief. But the two most common reasons I encounter are these:
 
1) Similarities between Islamic and Christian end time prophecies, and 
 
2) A belief the Bible says the Antichrist will come from the eastern rather than the western wing of the ancient Roman Empire.
 
So let’s take a look at these.
 
Islamic End Time Prophecies – The Koran does not contain end time prophecies, but the Hadith does. The Hadith is a collection of Muhammad’s teachings. Muslims generally believe these are valuable teachings, but not direct revelations from Allah. According to the Hadith, a ruler known as the Madhi will emerge in the last days. Muslims believe this man will rule the world for seven years and rid the earth of all evil prior to the Day of Judgment. What’s more, they say Jesus will return to earth and support the Madhi’s rule during this time.
 
Does any of this sound familiar? It should. After all, the Bible’s end time prophecies predict the rise of an Antichrist who will rule the earth for seven years just prior to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. And during the Tribulation, the Antichrist will be aided by a false prophet. When you study the texts side-by-side, it appears the Muslim Messiah and the Christian Antichrist are one and the same. At least, that’s the claim made by many believers in the Muslim Antichrist theory.
 
But there’s a big problem with this line of thinking. It gives the same divine authority to both the Bible and the Hadith, and that’s a big mistake. The Hadith is not divinely inspired. Its “prophecies” resemble the Bible’s because many of Muhammad’s ideas came from Judaism and Christianity – two of the major religions of his time.
 
Only the Bible has a flawless track record when it comes to fulfilled prophecy. The Hadith doesn’t. Therefore, I have no reason to believe the Hadith is divinely inspired. And if it’s not divinely inspired, why should I rely on it for insight into future fulfillment of bible prophecy?
 
The Eastern Wing of the Ancient Roman Empire – Much better arguments for a Muslim Antichrist are made by those who base their beliefs on the Bible-the Word of God. According to the Bible, the Antichrist will come from a revived version of the Roman Empire (Daniel 2, Revelation 17). Many supporters of the Muslim Antichrist theory believe the Bible says the Antichrist will come from a revived form of the eastern rather than the western wing of the ancient Roman Empire.
 
The eastern and western portions of the Roman Empire formed in A.D. 285. In that year, the Emperor Diocletian divided the empire into two parts – one governed in Rome (West) and the other governed in Constantinople (East). When Rome fell to invaders in A.D. 487, the power seat of the ancient Roman Empire shifted eastward to Constantinople (in modern day Turkey).
 
Many supporters of the Muslim Antichrist theory believe it’s this eastern portion of the Roman Empire that will re-emerge in the end times. They point to chapters 8 and 11 in the Book of Daniel, which foretell the rise of both the Antichrist and the tyrannical rule of the Assyrian king, Antiochus Epiphanes. Citing these passages, they make a case for an Antichrist of Assyrian descent.
 
What the Bible Says About the Antichrist
 
Despite these claims, here’s what the Bible says about the Antichrist:
 
1) He will sign a peace treaty with Israel – The Tribulation will begin when the Antichrist signs a peace treaty with Israel (Daniel 9:27). This will be a treaty placing the national security of Israel in the Antichrist’s hands. Is it realistic to think Israel will make such a pact with a Muslim leader?
 
2) He will proclaim himself to be God – The Bible says the Antichrist will enter the Temple in Jerusalem at the mid-point of the Tribulation and declare himself to be God (2 Thessalonians 2:3-4). He will demand worship. Such a claim would go against the teachings of the Koran, which says “there is no god but Allah” (Sura 9:129). While it’s possible the Antichrist will only identify with the Muslim faith and not be a strict adherent, it’s unlikely a true Muslim would claim to be God.
 
3) He will worship a god of fortresses – The Bible says the Antichrist “will worship a god of fortresses, a god unknown to his forefathers” (Daniel 11:38) This suggests the Antichrist will be an idolater who worships a new idol. Not Allah. Not Baal. But a god unknown to previous generations.
 
4) He will come from the Italian peninsula – The book of Daniel says the Antichrist will come from among the people who destroy the Temple. History clearly reveals who that was. In A.D. 70, Titus and the Roman legions marched into Jerusalem to put down a Jewish insurrection. In doing so, they destroyed the Temple and enslaved the Jewish people, taking them away in chains to the farthest corners of the empire.
 
This means the Antichrist will come from Rome. Supporters of the Muslim Antichrist theory reject this idea. They claim the Roman legions were composed of Syrians and local people who identify today as Muslims (Daniel 9:26). However, this just isn’t true. Titus and the legions he commanded were composed of Italians and Roman citizens acting under the full authority of Rome. Regardless, the seat of power that conquered Jerusalem was located in Rome, not Assyria. So the Bible is crystal clear in regard to where the Antichrist will come from. He will come from Rome.
 
Now, could he be a Roman citizen of Assyrian heritage? Possibly. But remember, the rule of the Assyrian king Antiochus Epiphanes (a forerunner of the Antichrist) is one of the reasons some believe the Antichrist will be of Assyrian descent. Yet Antiochus Epiphanes was Greek, not Assyrian. So if the idea of a Muslim Antichrist is built on the Daniel 11 description of Antiochus Epiphanes as an Assyrian, that claim is built on faulty ground.
 
What’s the Truth?
 
So with all these conflicting viewpoints, what’s the truth? The answer should be clear. The Bible is the truth. You can count on the Word of God and the fulfillment of all bible prophecy. What you can’t count on is any particular human interpretation of bible prophecy prior to its fulfillment.
 
To illustrate, let’s examine some past fulfilled prophecies. This will show just how difficult it can be to understand specific prophetic details ahead of time. 
 
Before the first coming of Jesus, some scriptural teachers claimed the Messiah would come from Bethlehem (John 7:42) while others said “no prophet comes from Galilee” (John 7:52). Of course, we know from hindsight, the Messiah came from Bethlehem (Micah 5:2), came out of Egypt (Hosea 11:1), and Galilee was filled with glory (Isaiah 9:1). Prior to Jesus of Nazareth, it was difficult to see how one man could fulfill all of these prophecies. Yet it happened – just as the Bible foretold.
 
Oftentimes, we show a tendency to read news headlines into the Bible rather than taking the Bible for what it says. The rise of Islam in recent years only increases the speculation of an Islamic Antichrist. But until he arrives on the world scene, no one can know for sure every characteristic of the Antichrist. Perhaps he will be an Italian Muslim from Syria. But perhaps not. We just don’t have enough information to know.
 
Nevertheless, we can be absolutely sure bible prophecy will be fulfilled to the last letter. In the meantime, a literal interpretation of scripture indicates the Antichrist will come from the Italian peninsula, not the Middle East. And the Bible’s statements that the Antichrist will establish a peace treaty with Israel (Daniel 9:27), proclaim himself to be God in the  Temple (2 Thessalonians 2:3-4), and worship a god of fortresses unknown to his forefathers (Daniel 11:38) strongly indicates the Antichrist will NOT be a Muslim. Any claim that he must be, rather than he might be, is not from the Bible, but from men.
 
Britt Gillette is author of the free ebook  Coming to Jesus: One Man’s Search for Truth and Life Purpose as well as  Signs of the Second Coming: 11 Reasons Jesus Will Return in Our Lifetime. He’s also the founder of  End Times Bible Prophecy.

 

Has God Left America’s House of Prayer?

Has God Left America’s House of Prayer? – By Daymond Duck – http://www.raptureready.com/featured/duck/dd151.html

Greek experts say the English word “apostasy” means to withdraw, stand away from, fall away from, or depart from the faith. Bible prophecy experts say departing from the faith is a sign that the end of the Church Age has arrived. They base this on something Paul said:

“Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils” (1 Tim. 4:1).

Apostasy is as old as the church, but professing believers who teach heresies will be a major problem in the organized church when the Rapture is near.

In 1893, the U.S. Congress gave a charter to the Episcopal Church to build a cathedral in Washington, DC. That Cathedral quickly became the location of religious services of national significance. The funerals of several U.S. presidents, senators and congressmen have been held there.

That Cathedral also became known as America’s “National House of Prayer.” Monthly prayer meetings have been held there including prayer for our nation during WW II. Special prayer services have been held there including a prayer service for our nation following the 9/11/2001 terrorist attack on the United States.

On Nov. 14, 2014, a Muslim prayer service was held at America’s “National House of Prayer.” Many prayer carpets were spread in the sanctuary; hundreds of Muslims turned their back on the cross; hundreds bowed toward Mecca and said, “There is only one god, he begets not (doesn’t have a Son) and I bear witness that Muhammad is His only servant and Apostle” (Jesus is not God’s Servant and there are not Twelve Apostles).

Christians believe John was an apostle. He wrote five books of the Bible including these words:

“Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son” (1 Jn. 2:22).

The apostle John also said:

“Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God:And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is thatspirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world” (1 Jn. 4:2-3).

The Muslim denial that God has a Son is a lie and nothing less than the spirit of Antichrist in America’s “National House of Prayer.” It is a doctrine of the devil that was organized and promoted by church leaders who have departed from the faith. It is no wonder that the Episcopal Church has lost more than 40 percent of its members since the middle 1960s.

I have presented this as an example of a church falling away from the faith to the group of Bible prophecy lovers that I have the honor of meeting with each week. I wrote this article to share their responses with those who read this.

One very perceptive lady said, “This tells you the temperature of that church.” She was referring to the fact that Jesus told the church at Laodicea:

“I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth” (Rev. 3:15-16).

The church officials that put that service together are a perfect example of people that would say, “I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing” (Rev. 3:17); people that know not that they are wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked; people that know not that they are spiritually poor; people that know not that their nakedness must be covered with the righteousness of God’s living Son; people that are blind to the fact that He is the only way to be saved and worshipping Allah condemns multitudes to hell.

One very perceptive man said, “It reminds me that President Obama said, ‘We (the people of the U.S.) are no longer a Christian nation.'”

He is right. America has fundamentally changed and clergy like those wretched, miserable leaders at the Episcopal Church in Washington, DC are a major contributing factor. Clergy that should be defending the faith have been seduced by evil spirits (1 Tim. 4:1). They call Jesus Lord, claim to preach in His name and claim to do many wonderful things like this odious event, but Jesus doesn’t know them (Matt.7:22-23).

Another very perceptive lady said, “It is obvious that before those church officials invited the Muslims to blaspheme God He had already left our National Cathedral.”

She is right. God will not share America’s “House of Prayer” with Allah. Here is fundamental change we can believe in: Either Allah goes or God goes and it is quite possible that God has already left. It is quite possible that future prayers in that defiled place will not be answered.

During the service a woman shouted out, “Leave our churches alone.” She was escorted out of the church shouting, “Why can’t you worship in your mosque?”

Church officials thought it was okay to allow Muslims to blaspheme Jehovah during that service in America’s “House of Prayer,” but it was not okay for a Christian to stand up for the faith at that time. Can those church officials honestly claim that they were sharing the gospel with their Muslim guests?

No one can deny that we should have order in the church and everything should be done for the glory of God. But worshipping Allah wasn’t done for the glory of God. And the problem wasn’t the woman who shouted out.

The problem was the religious church leaders who foolishly scheduled a service and allowed a Muslim imam to come into the church and say that “God has no son, that Jesus Christ cannot be his son, and there is no god like Allah.”

If those church leaders don’t condemn the heresy that occurred in that church, their hearts are not right with God and they are a part of the spirit of antichrist that prevailed there.

Oh, I know they said they were trying to promote tolerance among faiths. But that was only to appear godly and to try to justify their decision to ignore the Scriptures and compromise the faith. Paul spoke about this:

“This know also, that in the last days . . . . people will have a form of godliness” (2 Tim. 3:1-6). It is easy to understand why Jesus will spew out the lukewarm.

Prophecy Plus Ministries

Daymond & Rachel Duck

daymond.duck@yahoo.com