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The Daily Word of Righteousness
If You Love Me . . ., #18
He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God's temple, proclaiming himself to be God. (II Thessalonians 2:4)
Antichrist first will establish himself in the hearts of people, including many believers in Christ, so that the individual becomes a law unto himself. Then the Man of Lawlessness will take his place in the rebuilt temple in Jerusalem, sitting between the wings of the cherubim of glory, proclaiming himself to be the true and living God. This is the end result of the current teaching of humanism, of the rights of the individual to choose his or her own path.
Don't you remember that when I was with you I used to tell you these things? And now you know what is holding him back, so that he may be revealed at the proper time. (II Thessalonians 2:5,6)
The prominent person who will be the final Antichrist has not been revealed as yet. It is possible that a president of the United States will portray that which will be true of Antichrist. Our president will make a profession of Christianity and attend a Christian church, claiming to be "saved by grace." Yet his words and actions will often be lacking in integrity.
He will be the product of the prevailing Christian doctrine that has been so heavily infiltrated by humanism, Gnosticism, antinomianism, and dispensationalism. His voice will be Jacob's but the hands will be the hands of Esau.
Our president will not lay down his life, take up his cross, and follow the Master. Yet he will conceive of himself as a Christian. He will gather Christian leaders in a State Department building and discuss with them various world problems.
This is how Antichrist will operate. He will be a lawless man who seeks the cooperation of the Christian churches. He will flatter the church leaders, and they will join with him in his programs. They will cooperate because they are walking in blindness.
The president will welcome all efforts of the churches to promote humanistic ideals, to feed the hungry, to clothe naked. The moment the churches begin to stress righteousness, holiness, stern obedience to God, that we must lay down our life and follow Jesus, that the Kingdom of God is coming to the earth and Jesus will rule, then he and all who are like him will seek to undermine the Lord's influence.
We shall see this take place in the days to come.
For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way. (II Thessalonians 2:7)
Lawlessness is a "secret power." It is not an obvious sin like adultery, drunkenness, or murder. Lawlessness works in the realm of deception. Christian people do not recognize their self-will as being sin, yet self-will and rebellion are the greatest sins of all.
No doubt these same individuals who sometimes are ready to break the rules of their church, school, or place of employment would not fellowship with a believer who was an adulterer, drunkard, or murderer. Yet they do not see that they themselves are lawless persons. Lawlessness is a secret power that presents itself as wholesome individuality and a desirable freedom to choose one's way. We of today admire the person who is "in control."
All such self-guidance is Antichrist.
To be continued.