There are four verses in the Bible that use the word ‘antichrist’. The Liddell-Scott-Jones (LSJ) Greek lexicon says that ‘anti’ can mean ‘opposing / against’ or ‘instead of’, so ‘antichrist’ means ‘opposing Christ’ or ‘instead of Christ’ (i.e. something trying to take the place of Christ). We’ll list the verses that refer to ‘antichrist’ below and give a short comment on each:

1 John 2:18-19
{18} Children, it is the last hour, and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. Therefore we know that it is the last hour. {19} They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us.

There is not just one antichrist, there are ‘many antichrists’; we don’t have to wait for the antichrist to come – they are already in the world and have been since John’s day. They are related to Christians (they ‘went out from us’ – v19).

1 John 2:22
Who is the liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, he who denies the Father and the Son.

If someone denies the father / son relationship between God and Jesus then they are an antichrist. The antichrist is also linked to a denial that Jesus is the Christ. Christ means ‘anointed one’, and it is a reference to Jesus being the king and the priest who was promised in the Old Testament (the Old Testament word for ‘Christ’ is ‘Messiah’): John 1:40-41,45,47,49.

1 John 4:1-3
{1} Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. {2} By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, {3} and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already.

This says again that the antichrist is already in the world and has been since John’s day (v3). The antichrists are described as ‘false prophets’, which shows that antichrists are claiming to be Christians but are not really. ‘Spirit’ in v3 refers to the false prophets and their false teachings (v1). The spirit — the teaching — of the antichrist says that Jesus is not sent by God (v3). The teaching of the antichrist also says that Jesus has not ‘come in the flesh’ – i.e. it says that Jesus was not really a human.

2 John 1:17
For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not confess the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh. Such a one is the deceiver and the antichrist.

An antichrist is a deceiver, and there are many of them in the world (and have been since John’s day). An antichrist is someone who does not confess that Jesus was really a human (‘in the flesh’).

This is the evidence about ‘antichrists’. There are lots of antichrists; they are already in the world (it’s not something still future); they claim to be Christians but are false, teaching that Jesus was not really a human, and that he wasn’t really God’s son.

As there are already antichrists in the world, it would be a good idea to see if we can identify who they are so that we can avoid them. So, who fits the description of the antichrists?

Sadly, as 1 John 2:19 & 4:1 say, we are looking for people who claim to be Christians but are actually teaching false things. It may come as a shock to hear, but the doctrine of the Trinity (and related doctrines that say Jesus preexisted before his birth), although it claims to be a Christian teaching, fits the description of the teaching of the antichrist: the Trinitarian idea that Jesus is God removes Jesus from being a real human (the Bible states that Jesus was — and still is — a man (1 Tim. 2:5); God is not a human, though: Num. 23:19); and by making the Father and his son both “coeternal” and “coequal” it denys the literal father / son relationship between God and Jesus.

The sadness of this is that millions of people have been deceived (2 John 1:17) by this ‘spirit of the antichirst’.

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