Sunday, 15 March 2009 00:00

Watch Out for the Spirit of Anti-Christ

I John 2:18-25 (ESV)

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. 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. But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge. I write to you, not because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and because no lie is of the truth. 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. No one who denies the Son has the Father. Whoever confesses the Son has the Father also. Le what you heard form the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you too will abide in the Son and in the Father. And this is the promise that he made to us—eternal life.

In the verses preceding our text John warns that anyone who loves the world or the things in the world does not possess the love of the Father. He continues in our text to show that it is impossible to know God and have a spirit of anti-Christ, denying that Christ is God.

  1. It is the anti-Christ spirit that should be more of a concern than the anti-Christ.
    The anti-Christ has become a popular doctrine—that one will rise up to oppose Christ. Interestingly, only John writes specifically about "anti-Christ," but he never limits anti-Christ to a single enemy of Jesus. Many anti-Christs had already come (v.18). Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son (I John 2:22). What does this verse mean?
    1. Anyone who denies the nature of Christ is anti-Christ.
      They specifically deny His deity, that he is the perfect righteous man who lived as God in the flesh, died for sin, rose form the dead and now rules the universe. "For in Jesus Christ the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily" (Colossians 2:9).
    2. Anyone who denies the nature of Christ doesn't know God.
      The old proverb "all roads lead to Rome" does not apply to all religions. They nature of the Christian message is exclusive. There's only one way to know God. "I am the way, the truth and the life; no one comes to the Father but by me" (John 14:6).
  2. The vital truth of Christianity revolves around the person of Jesus.
    He who confesses the Son has the Father (I John 2:23). This is true Christian doctrine.
    1. Confess that Jesus is the Son of God.
      Jesus asked Simon Peter, "Who do you say that I am? Peter answered him: You are the Christ, the Son of the living God" (Matthew 16:16). Jesus said, "Upon this rock I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail."
    2. Confess that Jesus is Lord.
      "One day every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord" (Philippians 2:11). To be delivered from coming judgment is to acknowledge Him as Lord now.
    3. Confess that Jesus is the Messiah (the Christ, or the anointed one).
      In the Old Testament blood and oil, cleansing and anointing were used in the Tabernacle. The anointing of Christ (the Messiah) refers to His fulfillment of Old Testament sacrifices. "Who is the liar but one who denies that Jesus is the Christ?" (I John 2:22).
  3. Confess Christ to the end of your days and enjoy the re-creation of the world.
    "Let what you heard form the beginning abide in you... then you will abide" (v.24).

    "Therefore everyone who confesses Me before men, I will also confess him before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven" (Matthew 10:32-33).

    "Whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels" (Mark 8:38).

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