Here Come the Antichrists! 041912
1 John 2 warns us that in the last hour, many antichrists will come to us.
It may be difficult to tell the antichrists from the disciples. When I was a very young and stupid man, I was hitchhiking in California and got picked up by a man who was a very angry and upsetting Christian. His name was Jim Jones, who later led to a mass suicide of followers by drinking Kool-Aid poisoned with arsenic. His was a sad story, I think, but in retrospect, was he a disciple or an antichrist?
We all often meet and talk to disciples who are very angry and very upset. Upset with politics and politicians, economies and economists, etc. I worry about disciples who are so angry and hateful. I remember that Jesus went to the cross and died without a single angry or hateful word.
I don’t even know how long an hour is in God’s time. Are we near the end? Maybe we’ve been near the end for thousands of years, and plagued by antichrists since Jesus ascended to his father.
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1 John 2:18-25
1Answer me when I call, O God of my right! You gave me room when I was in distress. Be gracious to me, and hear my prayer.
2How long, you people, shall my honor suffer shame? How long will you love vain words, and seek after lies? Selah
3But know that the Lord has set apart the faithful for himself; the Lord hears when I call to him.
4When you are disturbed, do not sin; ponder it on your beds, and be silent. Selah
5Offer right sacrifices, and put your trust in the Lord.
6There are many who say, “O that we might see some good! Let the light of your face shine on us, O Lord!”
7You have put gladness in my heart more than when their grain and wine abound.
8I will both lie down and sleep in peace; for you alone, O Lord, make me lie down in safety.
9In the first year of Darius son of Ahasuerus, by birth a Mede, who became king over the realm of the Chaldeans— 2in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, perceived in the books the number of years that, according to the word of the Lord to the prophet Jeremiah, must be fulfilled for the devastation of Jerusalem, namely, seventy years. 3Then I turned to the Lord God, to seek an answer by prayer and supplication with fasting and sackcloth and ashes.
4I prayed to the Lord my God and made confession, saying, “Ah, Lord, great and awesome God, keeping covenant and steadfast love with those who love you and keep your commandments, 5we have sinned and done wrong, acted wickedly and rebelled, turning aside from your commandments and ordinances. 6We have not listened to your servants the prophets, who spoke in your name to our kings, our princes, and our ancestors, and to all the people of the land. 7“Righteousness is on your side, O Lord, but open shame, as at this day, falls on us, the people of Judah, the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and all Israel, those who are near and those who are far away, in all the lands to which you have driven them, because of the treachery that they have committed against you. 8Open shame, O Lord, falls on us, our kings, our officials, and our ancestors, because we have sinned against you. 9To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness, for we have rebelled against him, 10and have not obeyed the voice of the Lord our God by following his laws, which he set before us by his servants the prophets. 11“All Israel has transgressed your law and turned aside, refusing to obey your voice. So the curse and the oath written in the law of Moses, the servant of God, have been poured out upon us, because we have sinned against you. 12He has confirmed his words, which he spoke against us and against our rulers, by bringing upon us a calamity so great that what has been done against Jerusalem has never before been done under the whole heaven. 13Just as it is written in the law of Moses, all this calamity has come upon us. We did not entreat the favor of the Lord our God, turning from our iniquities and reflecting on his fidelity. 14So the Lord kept watch over this calamity until he brought it upon us. Indeed, the Lord our God is right in all that he has done; for we have disobeyed his voice. 15“And now, O Lord our God, who brought your people out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand and made your name renowned even to this day—we have sinned, we have done wickedly. 16O Lord, in view of all your righteous acts, let your anger and wrath, we pray, turn away from your city Jerusalem, your holy mountain; because of our sins and the iniquities of our ancestors, Jerusalem and your people have become a disgrace among all our neighbors. 17Now therefore, O our God, listen to the prayer of your servant and to his supplication, and for your own sake, Lord, let your face shine upon your desolated sanctuary. 18Incline your ear, O my God, and hear. Open your eyes and look at our desolation and the city that bears your name. We do not present our supplication before you on the ground of our righteousness, but on the ground of your great mercies. 19O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive; O Lord, listen and act and do not delay! For your own sake, O my God, because your city and your people bear your name!”
1 John 2:18-25
18Children, it is the last hour! As you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. From this we know that it is the last hour. 19They went out from us, but they did not belong to us; for if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us. But by going out they made it plain that none of them belongs to us.
20But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and all of you have knowledge. 21I write to you, not because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and you know that no lie comes from the truth. 22Who 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. 23No one who denies the Son has the Father; everyone who confesses the Son has the Father also. 24Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you will abide in the Son and in the Father. 25And this is what he has promised us, eternal life.
The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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