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Friday, August 10, 2012

Deception By False Christs

by John MacArthur
“For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will mislead many.” – Matthew 24:5
            Jesus here warns those living during the end times that the numbers of and deceptive influences by false Christs will greatly increase then. (There were false messiahs before Jesus’ day, and there have occasionally been others since, including in our day, but the number of false teachers with their widespread deceptions will proliferate in the end as never before.)  The deception of those days will grow and intensify so greatly because the Holy Spirit will withdraw His restraining power (see 2 Thess. 2:7).  The world’s systems and institutions will begin to self-destruct, suffering will become unbearable, sin will reach its maximum potential, and vulnerable people will desperately seek answers concerning the calamities (cf. 2 Tim. 3:13; 2 Peter 2:1-3).
            The foremost of the deceivers will be the Antichrist.  As Jesus Christ was righteousness incarnate, the Antichrist will be evil incarnate (see Dan. 8:23; 11:36).  The New Testament calls him the man of lawlessness, son destruction, and the Beast (2 Thess. 2:3; Rev. 11:7; 13:1-10).  With assistance from other deceivers, he will point the world toward peace but a peace that’s merely false and temporary (cf. 1 Thess. 5:3).
Ask Yourself:
            What are the primary causes for our culture’s inability to determine truth from error?  Why are false teachers and false gospels gaining such traction today, even in the guise of churches and ministries that claim to be Christian?  How can we most effectively disciple our children and others to keep from being overcome and misled by untrue doctrine? gty.org
John MacArthur
July 12 - Daily Readings from the Life of Christ – Volume 3

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