What will be the religious background of the Antichrist?

08/10/2012 16:04

Lamb and Lion Ministries: Dr. David Reagan has recently released his eleventh and latest book titled The Man of Lawlessness: The Antichrist in the Tribulation. I interviewed him about his new book on the Antichrist and asked him his opinion on some very controversial eschatological questions.

What will be the religious background of the Antichrist?

Nathan Jones: What about the Antichrist's religious background? As you know, there is a lot of contention that he will be a Muslim. I get a lot of emails from people who get very angry about this topic.

Dr. Reagan: The Antichrist being a Muslim is something I don't think ever occurred to anybody until recently. People tend to interpret Bible prophecy out of the newspapers, so whatever is popular in the newspaper, well that must be the answer.

Certainly today the Muslims are on the rise. The Muslims are very aggressive around the world, so we now have people saying they think the Antichrist is really going to be a Muslim. We have a fellow by the name of Joel Richardson who has written a book about this possibility. He is the primary advocate of the viewpoint that the Antichrist will be a Muslim.

The first time I heard about this view my immediate reaction was, "That's just crazy, because the Bible says point blank the Antichrist will walk into the rebuilt Temple in Jerusalem, take his seat on the throne there, and declare himself to be God. What Muslim would ever declare himself to be God? Anybody who would do that would be immediately killed by the Muslims. They would not have anything to do with such a claim."

Richardson's theory is, no, the Muslims are going to increase in power and the Antichrist will really be a Muslim leader. He will be the Mahdi, which you know in Muslim theology they believe will come and who will be the Islamic messiah. Richardson believes the Mahdi is the one who is going to be the Antichrist. He will unite all the Muslims of the world behind him and they will be the most powerful force. They will be the ones who will come against the Jews and all that in the end times.

There is a lot of problems with the Muslim Antichrist view. Not only the problem of a Muslim ever declaring himself to be God, but you know as well as I do there are two wars that are indicated most likely before or just at the beginning of the Tribulation — the Psalm 83 War and the war of Ezekiel 38-39. In my opinion, those wars are going to pretty well wipe out the Muslims in the Middle East. The majority of Muslims are in other parts of the world, but in the Middle East there's not going to be much left to lead there. Wouldn't you agree?

Nathan Jones: I don't see how Islam could be a major player during the Tribulation. Once Israel subdues its neighbors in Psalm 83 and then once God supernaturally defeats Iran and Turkey and Russia and Libya and all these major players in the Middle East, how could Islam possible stand? How could a Muslim have faith in Allah anymore when the entire infrastructure of Islam is destroyed? It's far more logical that the Antichrist when he comes will fill the power vacuum in the Middle East and will go on to more than likely annihilate the rest of the Muslims in India, Bangladesh and other national strongholds.

Dr. Reagan: Right! In fact, the indication of the Scriptures is that the Psalm 83 War and the Ezekiel 38-39 War will most likely take place before the Tribulation begins or early into the Tribulation, which would end the current geopolitical and religious structure of Islam as it exists today. There's just not going to be any Muslim power left in the Middle East when the Antichrist is done with them.

There are a lot of other problems with the Islamic Antichrist theory. One problem is that the person who talks the most about the Mahdi is the leader of Iran today, and that's a Shiite nation. The Shiites are at most 20% of the Muslims, really probably closer to 10%. Ninety percent of the Muslims in the world are Sunnis. I cannot believe that some Shiite Mahdi is going to rule all of Islam, because they argue that when he appears the first thing he is going to do is to declare that the Shiite version is the correct version of Islam. Then all of the Sunnis are suddenly going to say, "Oh, great!" and unite behind this guy?

Furthermore, Islamic unification violates the covenant that God gave to Ishmael. In that covenant God said Ishmael and his descendents would always be a people who will not be able to get along with anyone including themselves. The Sunnis and the Shiites are never going to fully unite, as they hate each other with a passion. They are never going to unite behind some Mahdi or whatever.

The whole Islamic Antichrist theory goes against everything we have here in the Bible.

Of course their number one argument now has become that Daniel 9 says that the Antichrist is going to rise out of the people who destroyed the Temple. True, but they argue that most of the Roman soldiers were people from the Middle East.

Nathan Jones: Mercenaries, and all those sorts?

Dr. Reagan: Yes, they claim that those are the true people from the Middle East, so the Antichrist is going to rise out of the Middle East. My argument is that I don't care what they were. I don't care if they were Australian aborigines! It was the Romans who decided to destroy Jerusalem. It was the Romans who gave the order to destroy Jerusalem. It was Roman generals with Roman troops. I don't know how the Bible could be any clearer. It's not going to be the Muslims.

Nathan Jones: Very good! I agree totally 100%.

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