Antichrists Come from Your Church
1 John 2:18–20 (KJV 1900) 18 Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time. 19 They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us. 20 But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things.
They went “out from us” [of fellowship], “not of us” [belonging to Christ], “of us” [belonging to Christ], “not all of us” [not one of those in question was saved]
John identifies the antichrists [with a small a] as originating in the church. The devil is attacking the church from within, planting the unsaved like tares, who incubate in the assembly and are spawned upon the world trained to deceive the elect and to pervert good morals by the corruption of the truth.
Acts 20:29–30 (KJV 1900) 29 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.
Within the church are antichrists in training, who are studying the Christian and the church.
This is the reason why a softening of the gospel and a diminishing of honest and fearless bible teaching is a great disservice to believers and to the community at large. FAST teaching [Frequent, Accurate, Systematic Teaching], would result in the expulsion of these antichrists into the world where they could be exposed not merely as disgruntled Christians, but as antichrists. Paul originally kept these men and women out of Ephesus with his teaching and John had to preach them out of this church again when he ministered there.
John says that the departure of these persons from the church provided the opportunity for them to be manifest [NT: 5319] as antichrists.
Manifest: [NT5319] “to make manifest or visible or known what has been hidden or unknown, to manifest, whether by words, or deeds, or in any other way.” [Strong]
1 Corinthians 11:19 (KJV 1900) 19 For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you.
Once those operating in the spirit of antichrist are separated from the church, the true saints discover that these persons are dangerous, and the excluded persons themselves, having been branded as heretics, now have the opportunity to be truly saved. Unfortunately, much of today’s preaching and teaching is creating a comfortable cocoon, a vacation condo for false teachers and antichrists who await their time to advance to bigger and greater things for the devil-after they have destroyed your church, of course.
The Christian’s Built-In Antichrist Detector
1 John 2:20–22 (KJV 1900) 20 But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things. 21 I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth. 22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.
John takes the time to say a couple of things about mature disciples:
Mature disciples do not permanently depart from sound churches. This may be the reason for the Baptist letter that is given to believers who must transfer to another church for legitimate reasons. The churches realize that such a believer will try to unite with another body in their new location and the former Pastor wanted to tell the new Pastor that this believer was not a heretic and could be welcomed into the new local church.
Secondly, mature believers are able to take advantage of the doctrine that is in their souls to avoid being tricked by antichrists. There is for all believers an anointing that warns them about false teaching. This anointing is the indwelling Holy Spirit. Now this verse and v27 do not mean that you do not need to be taught by sound teachers, the anointing, or the indwelling Holy Spirit brings to your remembrance that which you were taught by these sound teachers. When John said you have not need of anyone to teach you, he was saying that you do not need any false prophets/antichrists to teach you.
1 John 2:27 (KJV 1900) 27 But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.
Ephesians 4:11–12 (KJV 1900) 11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
John says that the Holy Spirit is able to bring to the minds of believers’ biblical truth at the proper time. John told them in this epistle that: “21 I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth.” 1 John 2:21
How did they know it? It did not seep miraculously into their minds; they were taught it. Consequently, there is no reason for them not to be able to tell the difference between a lie and the truth.
John 14:26 (KJV 1900) 26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
You cannot discern the difference between a satanic lie and the truth if you have never sat under sound teaching. A properly taught believer will know when he is hearing heresy, even if he cannot always quote chapter and verse to disprove it. The lack of systematic sound teaching in churches is the reason that antichrists have been so successful.
The Christian is Anointed for a Spiritual Purpose
There is an interesting play on words in the Greek of this passage of 1 John 2.20-22. The Christ is Christos [G: 5547], which means the Anointed, the believer has a chrisma [G:5545] or an anointing and the Antichrist is antichristos [G:500] and he has an anointing by a demonic spirit.
Christ is a high priest according to Melchizedek [Heb 5.6]; the believer is a part of that eternal royal priesthood [1 Pet 2.5, 9] and the Antichrist will one day stand in the Holy Place imitating Christ [2 Th 2.3-4].
All believers in the church age are members of Christ’s body, through the ministry of the baptism of the Holy Spirit [1 Cor 6.15; 12.13a]. As members of Christ, we have the highest possible spiritual position and spiritual potential in this life and in the life to come. Those who believe the gospel are also made temples of God by the indwelling of the third Person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit [1 Cor 3.16]. Because of the indwelling and filling of the Spirit, members of the body of Christ have access to unlimited spiritual power to live and to minister as God requires [Eph 3.20; Php 2.13; 4.13; Col 1.29; Jn 15.7].
The Christian student of biblical prophecy should discover a renewed motivation for the successful pursuit of his Christian discipleship for the duration of his life. In so doing, he will find that this pursuit requires a re-commitment to winning the spiritual warfare within his own geography and his own historical context. This is key: the plan of God is advanced by the successful execution of each Christian life.
We fight the spiritual warfare through spiritual transformation [Rom 12.1; 1 Pet 1.16-17] that qualifies us for use in spiritual ministry. In other words, we win the spiritual warfare through the achievement of personal holiness, which in turn sanctifies us for divine service. We ourselves are changed to obedient disciples, then we minister according to the gifts provided us by God.
The question is not are we in the war, the question is are we engaged in the battle and on whose side? Every living person is involved in the spiritual conflict between the devil and the Lord as either a combatant or a casualty. You are either consciously representing the interests of Christ or the Antichrist, or you are an unconscious pawn. Pawns may be unbelievers or believers who will not submit themselves to the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ. All pawns become assets of Satan and his plan to establish a New World Order and install his son, the Antichrist as the god of this earth.
[Adapted from the manuscript “The Antichrist and the New World Order,” Richard. G. Walker Sr.© 2020]