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"Amillennialism 101" -- Audio and On-Line Resources
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And the Survey Says . . . The Antichrist Is . . .

antichrist beast wince.jpgIn a recent survey on (h.t. to Paul and Luann), people gave the following answers to the question, "who is the Antichrist?"  Over four hundred people voted.  Here are their answers . . .


•    A Future Man to Be Revealed

52% · 268 votes

 •    The Office of the Pope

24% · 122 votes

 •    An Invisible Yet Known Presance

3% · 18 votes

 •    All of False Religion

10% · 54 votes

 •    The Anti-Christ Has Come and Gone

4% · 21 votes


No answer. Skip this survey, I do not care to vote on this topic.

7% · 35 votes

In my book, The Man of Sin, I attempt to make the case that the church has faced many "antichrists" from the days of the apostles (1 John 2:18, 22; 4:3; 2 John 7).  

I also contend that the beast from the land is imperial Rome (Revelation 13:1-10) and the beast from the sea is the emperor cult in Asia Minor (Revelation 13:11-18) when John was given the vision we now know as the Book of Revelation, about A. D. 95.  The dragon empowers the state and its leader (the false prophet) to turn on all those who confess "Jesus is Lord."  To confess "Jesus is Lord" is to simultaneously confess that "Caesar isn't!" 

John implies that what is represented by the beast (a satanically energized state waging war on the church) will reoccur throughout the course of this age (Revelation 17:9-18), and will finally culminate in a great apostasy and out-pouring of evil at the end of this age (Revelation 20:7-10), when Satan is released from the Abyss, only to go to his final destruction.

Paul's discussion of the "man of sin" (lawlessness) in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12, fits with this as well.  Paul speaks of someone in the church (the temple of God--which I believe is not a reference to the temple in Jerusalem, either in AD 70 or in the future), who proclaims himself God, demands worship, and deceives many through Satanic power.  Paul likewise ties this to a final apostasy (2 Thessalonians 2:3).  While image of a deceiver in the church surely fits with the papacy (which is an antichrist institution), Paul ties the revelation of this particular individual to the time of the end (2:8).  The appearance of the man of sin and the final apostasy are harbingers of the end.

So, how would I vote in the poll?  Because there is a certain sense in which Antichrist is a past, present, and future phenomena, if I could, I'd say "yes" to points 1, 2, and 4, and "no" to point 5, "the Antichrist has come and gone."

Reader Comments (29)

With ALL due respect sir, you made a lot of assumptions on your post. One assumption is that John wrote Revelation in 95 A.D. Hardly beleivable. Nonetheless, an clear-headed response to all the hysteria. I trust that besides many unanswered inconsistencies within Amil, your book will help put to death this dispensational garbage.
June 5, 2006 | Unregistered Commentervox reformata
You've got to love when apparent Preterists make unsubstantiated swipes, coupled with misspellings (beleivable?).

"Unanswered inconsistencies?" Make your case!
June 5, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterKBennett
Calling all Amillenialists:

What is this ? And has this allready happened ?

Rev 18:4-24 And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. (5) For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities. (6) Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double. (7) How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow. (8) Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her. (9) And the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her, shall bewail her, and lament for her, when they shall see the smoke of her burning, (10) Standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighty city! for in one hour is thy judgment come. (11) And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise any more: (12) The merchandise of gold, and silver, and precious stones, and of pearls, and fine linen, and purple, and silk, and scarlet, and all thyine wood, and all manner vessels of ivory, and all manner vessels of most precious wood, and of brass, and iron, and marble, (13) And cinnamon, and odours, and ointments, and frankincense, and wine, and oil, and fine flour, and wheat, and beasts, and sheep, and horses, and chariots, and slaves, and souls of men. (14) And the fruits that thy soul lusted after are departed from thee, and all things which were dainty and goodly are departed from thee, and thou shalt find them no more at all. (15) The merchants of these things, which were made rich by her, shall stand afar off for the fear of her torment, weeping and wailing, (16) And saying, Alas, alas, that great city, that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet, and decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls! (17) For in one hour so great riches is come to nought. And every shipmaster, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as many as trade by sea, stood afar off, (18) And cried when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, What city is like unto this great city! (19) And they cast dust on their heads, and cried, weeping and wailing, saying, Alas, alas, that great city, wherein were made rich all that had ships in the sea by reason of her costliness! for in one hour is she made desolate. (20) Rejoice over her, thou heaven, and ye holy apostles and prophets; for God hath avenged you on her. (21) And a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, Thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found no more at all. (22) And the voice of harpers, and musicians, and of pipers, and trumpeters, shall be heard no more at all in thee; and no craftsman, of whatsoever craft he be, shall be found any more in thee; and the sound of a millstone shall be heard no more at all in thee; (23) And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived. (24) And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth.
June 5, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterClueless
And just because someone hits a wrong key doesn't mean they are clueless...
June 5, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterClueless
Dear Clueless:

Today's homework assignment is: G. K. Beale, The Book of Revelation, New International Greek Testament Commentary (Eerdmans), pp. 897-925


Dennis E. Johnson, Triumph of the Lamb (P & R), pp. 254-258.

Then you will no longer be so "clueless" about the amillennial view of Revelation 18:4-20.
June 5, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterKim Riddlebarger
There is no question that the book "A Case for Amillennialism" is one of the best out pertaining to the millennium. Amillennialism is as clear as the doctrine of election. I recently bought the book "The Man of Sin" and I realize that the man of sin is not Kim Riddlebarger. I believe he has already been revealed in the Papacy. We can't use the passage, “That Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed” (II Thessalonians 2:3) to prove that he has not yet come; for Peter refers to the swift destruction that will come upon false teachers (II Peter 2:1) even though there were to be centuries between their arrival and Christ’s arrival. To insist that the coming of the Antichrist must be a last of the last days event just prior to Christ’s return is to erroneously presume that is what Paul is implying.
June 5, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterAnthony

Ask a very simple question requiring a one or two word answer and get referred to another book.This is quite a scheme, so you guys writing books all work together ?

No wonder we went through the dark ages, Amil's seem to not be able to read a simple passage and figure it out.

OK - Is there any scripture at all that can be interpreted without another book ?
June 5, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterClueless

By now, most readers of my blog have figured out that I answer questions so as to make a point. Had you asked nicely, "how do amillennarians interpret Revelation 18:4-20?" I would have given you the following link .

If you followed that link, you would find a very simple and non-technical explanation of the passage in which I interpret Scripture with Scripture.

However, since we'd already had a few bouts of late (both here on my blog and in other contexts), I was simply reminding you of what I have already told you repeatedly. You need to figure out just what it is, exactly, that amillennarians actually believe before making "snotty" comments that are not grounded in fact. The very premise of your question indicates that you don't have a clue. So, you still need to do some homework.

If you want a simple and biblical explanation of this text, follow the link.
June 5, 2006 | Registered CommenterKim Riddlebarger
I am reading "The Man of Sin" right now. And I find that it has been very helpful. Thanks Dr. Riddlebarger!
June 6, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterMike Ratliff
We just finished the book. Easy to read and understand. Really enjoyed it. Learned a few more things too. Thanks Kim.
June 6, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterplw
Aw, shucks. You should have warned us that this post was a plot-spoiler for your book.
June 6, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterDavid Gadbois

I'm curious as to why you don't recommend Hendriksen's More Than Conquerors much any more. I have heard you mention about it being "out of date," and I was curious how.

I certainly see the value of Beale's work, but have not been much impressed with Johnson's.

June 6, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterKBennett
Dear Clueless,

Can Revelation be interpreted without going outside the canon?

Is it possible to interpret Revelation without Josephus, or perhaps other uninspired history books?

Want a brief answer? It's the fall of the Whore of Babylon, and no.

Your argument is with Idealism, not with Amillennialism. This passage isn't about the millennium at all, it addresses (to a certain degree) the tribulation (hence the arguments with preterists) and the final judgment.

Once we're on the same page using correct terms, then we can have a sane discussion.
June 6, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterKBennett

Put your guns away, Beale isn't the best out there. Instead of shooting "rhetoric pejoratives" you should make at least ONE valid argument. BTW, this isn't a forum, detail is out of the question. I can only give simple statements, unlike your simplistic or what you call "brief answers". Now that, is UNBELEIVALE. Turn to the right page.
June 6, 2006 | Unregistered Commentervox reformata
Dear Vox,

Huh? What are you talking about?

I have no argument to make. I have not claimed that Beale is "the best."
I am responding to your shot (AD95, "Amill inconsistencies").

Please support. (UNBELEIVALE? - sigh)
June 6, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterKBennett

I've been keeping an eye on this discussion. I'm still waiting to see just one example of any "unanswered inconsistencies" in the Amil position from you.

KBennett asked you to "make your case!" My sentiments exactly.

Just curious.
June 6, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterBrianR
OK Kbennet,

Since we are defining terms what is the "Whore of Babylon" ? Is it a real thing or a spiritual thing ? If it is spiritual then why list the commodities and mention those that dwell in luxury - Sounds pretty much like the Western world we live in today. And could NEVER be more applicable than today (right along with 2Ti 3:4 that describes the last days).

And I am really new to all these Ism's you guys so fondly mention. So please excuse my ignorance, I do have the Josephus book but have seen no need to use it for Eschatological issues because I don't see a need for it.

Please instruct me on the definition of the "Whore of Babylon" and has the Whore collapsed or not ?

And who are the folks that comprise the Armies in Heaven that return with Christ in the next chapter ?

And Mr. Riddlebarger I find your sterotyping and labelling mechanisms you commonly use very offensive, Want to prove your point ? Try talking TO people instead of talking AT people. I had no clue what you even meant by the significance of this day, I haven't heard any "Dispensationalist" radio shows dedicate two entire shows on it like your friend Mr. Wilken has, So who is REALLY preoccupied with it ?
June 6, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterClueless
Kbennet - OK sorry for the mixup, you answered the question.

What I am trying to discern is:

Does the AMIL view believe in a literal period (7 years or otherwise - forget Daniel 9) of climactic chaos (including a massive population die-off) that precedes the return of Christ ? I have had discussion after discussion about this and cannot seem to get a clear answer from any Amil person I have listened to or read.

I am not trying to prove/disprove anyone here, I am just trying to get a straight answer on this.

Is destruction coming ? Or do we live in a state of consumeristic bliss until the return of Christ ? Are the Horsemen, Bowls, Seals and Trumpets "symbolic" through the ages also ?
June 6, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterClueless

I appreciate the thoughtful questions.

The whore of babylon is both a spiritual thing and a real thing. It is the spiritual depravity of the marketplace, which can be seen in every generation since the Ascension. Therefore, it was seen in first century Rome, but it also can be seen in today's West. You are perceptive to notice it.

Bravo on not using Josephus, I had incorrectly assumed you were preteristic. I apologize.

Those that comprise the "armies of heaven" in the following chapter are Christ and his angels. It is a picture of the final judgment, which we Amillennialists claim reappears seven times throughout Revelation.

Again, thanks for the questions!
June 6, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterKBennett

Let me be very careful to talk to you, not at you.

Go here! Read this!

Then, after reading these expositions of the biblical passages mentioned above, if you have questions, email me privately, and I'll try to answer them.

But as of now, you are done. All further ranting about climate change and population die-off will be deleted.

I will answer you one last time . . .

Will there be cosmic signs accompanying the Lord's return? Yes!

Will there be population die-offs? John speaks of judgments occuring throughout the course of this present evil age which kill one-quarter and then one-third of the world's population respectively. John teaches these judgments intensify before the end.

By the way . . . Vox . . . Beale is the best commentary on Revelation! Johnson is close behind and the best popular exposition. Bauckham's studies are excellent as well.

OK . . . Enough!!!!
June 6, 2006 | Registered CommenterKim Riddlebarger

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