The Messiah

Why We Need A Messiah

When man sinned (Genesis 3) he separated himself from God. God is perfect, Man is not. In order for God and Man to enter into a relationship something needed to change. So God promised to send a sacrifice, a Messiah, to atone for our sins (Genesis 3:15). The sacrifice of the Messiah (which means “Anointed”) would satisfy God and restore the relationship between Creator and Creation (Isaiah 53:10-11).

Let’s learn what the Old Testament predicted concerning the Messiah.

The Messiah Would Be God Himself

“I, even I, am the Lord, and apart from me there is no savior.” (Isaiah 43:11)

Not only this verse, but the entire Old Testament makes it very clear that God alone is the One who saves us from the judgment of sin. He alone is our Savior.

“But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are little among the thousands of Judah, Yet out of you shall come forth to Me the One to be Ruler in Israel, whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting.” (Micah 5:2)

Here we learn the Messiah is an eternal Being.

Behold, the days are coming,” says the LORD, That I will raise to David a Branch of righteousness; A King shall reign and prosper, And execute judgment and righteousness in the earth. In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell safely; Now this is His name by which He will be called: THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS” (Jeremiah 23:5-6)

And here the Messiah is given an exalted title — “The Lord Our Righteousness” — and He executes judgment and righteousness in the earth. These are two things only God can do. “Surely He is God who judges in the earth.” (Psalm 58:11)

“The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” (Psalm 110:1)

“Sit at my right hand” is a term that speaks of equality. But God has said there is no one like Him or beside Him – “there is no other God besides Me, A just God and a Savior; there is none besides Me.” (Isaiah 45:21) So who is this sitting at His right hand? It is Jesus Christ, God the Son as we’ll discover in this next verse.

Who has ascended into heaven, or descended? Who has gathered the wind in His fists? Who has bound the waters in a garment? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is His name, and what is His Son’s name, if you know? (Proverb 30:40)

Here in the middle of the Old Testament we learn that God has a Son.

“I will return again to My place till they acknowledge their offense. Then they will seek My face. In their affliction they will earnestly seek Me.” ( Hosea 5:15)

God’s place is heaven (“Heaven is His throne” the Psalm says). To return to His place He must have first left it.

“Behold, I send My messenger, and he will prepare the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple, Even the Messenger of the covenant, In whom you delight. Behold, He is coming,” Says the LORD of hosts.” (Malachi 3:1)

This verse identifies the Messenger as “the Lord” who visits “His” temple. The Old Testament is certainly clear that only God is to be worshiped.

“Listen to Me, O Jacob, and Israel, My called: I am He, I am the First, I am also the Last. Indeed My hand has laid the foundation of the earth, and My right hand has stretched out the heavens. When I call to them, They stand up together.

Come near to Me, hear this: I have not spoken in secret from the beginning; From the time that it was, I was there. And now the Lord GOD and His Spirit Have sent Me.

Thus says the LORD, your Redeemer, The Holy One of Israel: “I am the LORD your God, Who teaches you to profit, Who leads you by the way you should go.” (Isaiah 48:12,16-17)

These verses are an absolute goldmine of information! Look at what they tell us:

1) The first verse clearly identifies the speaker as God
2) He tells us that God and the Holy Spirit have sent Him (Here is the Trinity in the Old Testament)
3) He tells us that He, God, is the Redeemer and the Holy One of Israel

So from these passages we can conclude that the Messiah is God, the Redeemer, and further more He is a member the Trinity.

The Timeframe Of Messiah’s Coming Was Foretold

So far we’ve learned that God promised to send a Savior, a Messiah to save the world from sin. We also learned that the Messiah would be God Himself. Now let’s look at when the Bible says He would come.

“Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the command to restore and build Jerusalem until Messiah the Prince, there shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks; the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublesome times.

And after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself; and the people of the prince who is to come Shall destroy the city and the sanctuary.” (Daniel 9:25-26)

Now in these verses you have two areas where a timeframe is given:

1) Were told the Messiah would be “cut off, but not for Himself” at the end of 62 weeks. A week equals seven years. The Jewish calendar used a 360-day year so 69 weeks of 360-day years totals 173,880 days. Essentially Gabriel told Daniel that the interval between the commandment to rebuild Jerusalem until the presentation of the Messiah as King would be 173,880 days.

That commandment to restore and build Jerusalem was given by Artaxerxes Longimanus on March 14, 445 BC. (The emphasis in the verse on “the street” and “the wall” was to avoid confusion with other earlier mandates confined to rebuilding the Temple.) After accounting for leap years, 173,880 days from March 14, 445 BC. brings us to April 6, 32 AD. (See the Khouse study http://www.khouse.org/articles/biblestudy/19960301-46.html for greater detail)

2) If you don’t want to accept that we look to the second source. We’re told that He would be cut off before the city and sanctuary is destroyed. This occurred in 70AD.

Then we find this third reference:

“Behold, the days are coming,” says the LORD, That I will raise to David a Branch of righteousness; A King shall reign and prosper, And execute judgment and righteousness in the earth.

In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell safely; Now this is His name by which He will be called: THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS”. (Jeremiah 23:5-6)

After the temple was destroyed in 70AD it became impossible to tell who was from which tribe because the genealogies were stored there. The Messiah had to come before 70AD because after that no one could prove what tribe they were from.

And here is a fourth timeframe reference:

“Behold, I send My messenger, and he will prepare the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple. Even the Messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight. Behold, He is coming,” says the LORD of hosts.” (Malachi 3:1)

This verse says that the messenger will visit His temple suddenly. Again this would have had to have happened before 70AD.

These verses leave us with little doubt that the Messiah had to come before 70 AD. So we know that God was to come before 70 AD. What was He to do once He arrived?

The Messiah Would Be A Sacrifice For Sin

Let’s take a deeper look at the prophecies foretelling the sacrifice the Messiah would make.

“And after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself.” (Daniel 9:26)

“Cut off” literally means to be killed. The Messiah was to be killed, we’re told, but not for Himself. If not for Himself then for whom?

“He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities. The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray. We have turned, every one, to his own way. And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him. He has put Him to grief. When You make His soul an offering for sin. Therefore I will divide Him a portion with the great, and He shall divide the spoil with the strong, because He poured out His soul unto death, and He was numbered with the transgressors, and He bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.” (Isaiah 53:4-6,10,12)

Isaiah 53 is the most famous of the messianic prophecies. It speaks of a suffering Servant who would be a sacrifice for our sins and make peace with God on our behalf. Because it was written about 700 years before Christ, and so clearly describes Him, it’s been heavily attacked. The main argument against it is that this chapter is not referring to the Messiah, but rather the nation Israel. For one to hold this view one must:

1) Ignore the plain reading of the text. Israel is portrayed as sinful whereas the Servant is portrayed as sinless. It makes absolutely no sense if the Servant who redeems is Israel because Israel is the one in need of redemption

2) Ignore the content of the dozen chapters before and several chapters after that again and again and again identify the Servant, the Holy One, the Redeemer and the only Savior as God and God alone

3) Ignore reams of writings from the ancient rabbis who identified the Servant as the Messiah. The fact is that no one had a problem identifying the Servant as the Messiah until Jesus came along and fulfilled these prophecies. After Jesus, people suddenly had a problem with the original interpretation

So, Daniel tells us the Messiah would be killed but not for Himself. Isaiah goes further and tells us that the ones He would die for the sins of Israel — and not only for Israel but for the rest of the world as well.

“Indeed He says, ‘It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved ones of Israel. I will also give You as a light to the Gentiles, that You should be My salvation to the ends of the earth.”‘ (Isaiah 49:6)

The price that the Messiah paid was so great that is sufficient to provide salvation to the whole earth. His salvation is available to all you seek it. It’s simply a matter, like Joshua said, of “choosing who you will serve.” (Joshua 24:15)

The Messiah Would Be Resurrected

Now we’re going to look at the prophecies concerning the resurrection and everlasting reign of the Messiah.

“And they made His grave with the wicked– but with the rich at His death, because He had done no violence, nor was any deceit in His mouth.

Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him. He has put Him to grief. When You make His soul an offering for sin, He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days, And the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in His hand.” (Isaiah 53:9-10)

If we read these two verses carefully we discover that the Messiah will die, yet He shall see His seed and His days shall be prolonged. That can only happen if He is resurrected. Let’s look at another verse.

“For You will not leave my soul in Sheol, nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption.” (Psalm 16:10)

This prophecy tells us that the Holy One will not stay dead. He will not “see corruption”. So there’s no confusion let’s make sure we know who this Holy One is. Isaiah identifies Him several times including in Isaiah 43:3: “For I am the Lord your God, The Holy One of Israel, your Savior.” (Also see Isaiah 1:4; Isaiah 10:20; Isaiah 40:25) This leaves us wondering: If Jesus fulfilled all these other prophecies why hasn’t He established an everlasting kingdom yet?

The Bible clearly lay out two “missions” for the Messiah.

1) He was to die for the sins of the people
2) He was to establish an everlasting kingdom

That he would die for the sins of the people is found in Daniel 9:6:

“And after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself. And the people of the prince who is to come Shall destroy the city and the sanctuary.”

That he would establish an everlasting kingdom of peace is found in Isaiah 9:6:

“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace There will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice.”

These two missions are so clear that many Jews adopted a “two Messiah” theory which says there would be two Messiahs — a Son of Joseph who would be the suffering Messiah and a Son of David who would rule forever.

The problem with this view is that while the Son of David is found throughout Scripture, nowhere is a Son of Joseph found. And because other verses we’ve looked at clearly identify God as the only Savior, the “one Messiah” view is the one that lines up with scripture.

So the Messiah was to die for the sins of the people and establish everlasting peace. In order for one Messiah to complete these two missions which one would have to be fulfill first? Obviously He’d have to die first because if He died after the kingdom was established it wouldn’t be everlasting. To do this He would have to be resurrected. That’s exactly what we learned above in Psalm 22 and Isaiah 53.

Jesus died for the sins of the people and was resurrected but He didn’t establish this kingdom directly after His resurrection because the Jews had rejected Him (Which is a fulfillment of Isaiah 53:3). Matthew 23: 37-39 explains:

“Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing!

See! Your house is left to you desolate; for I say to you, you shall see Me no more till you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!'”

When will they say “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord”? This will happen at the end of the Great Tribulation. Then the Jewish people will recognize Jesus as Messiah. See Hosea 5:15:

“I will return again to My place till they acknowledge their offense. Then they will seek My face. In their affliction they will earnestly seek Me.”

And when they earnestly seek Him Hosea 6:1-2 says He will return:

“Come, and let us return to the LORD. For He has torn, but He will heal us. He has stricken, but He will bind us up. After two days He will revive us. On the third day He will raise us up, that we may live in His sight.”

At the end of the Great Tribulation, the Jewish people will accept Jesus as Messiah. He will then return and establish His everlasting kingdom of peace where “the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away. Then He who sits on the throne will say, ‘Behold, I make all things new.'” (Revelation 21:3-5)

Who Fulfilled These Prophecies?

In this study we’ve outlined a very broad overview of what the Bible teaches about the Messiah. Though we’ve barely even begun to scratch the surface, without using one verse from the New Testament we’ve learned that the Messiah would:

1) Come before the temple was destroyed in 70AD
2) Be God Himself
3) Die for the sins of the world
4) Be Resurrected
5) Return To Reign Forever

In all of history only Jesus Christ has fulfilled these prophecies. He came before the temple was destroyed (Luke 21:5-6), He is God (John 14:8-9; Colossians 1:15), He died for the sins of the world (John 3:16; 1 Corinthians 15:1-4), He was resurrected (Luke 24:6), and He will return again soon (Revelation 22:20)

Others have come claiming to be the Messiah and they all followed the same pattern — they gained a following, died, lost their following. Jesus is unique in all of history. He gained a following, died, then His following exploded. Why would Jesus gain so many followers after He died? Answer: After Jesus was resurrected His followers realized that He was the promised Messiah. He is the One who died for your sins. Now what do you do with that information?

“Seek the Lord while He may be found, call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts. Let him return to the Lord, and He will have mercy on him and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.” (Isaiah 55:6-7)

Come to Jesus today while He offers forgiveness.

The Great Promise

“In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” – John 14:2-3

In John 14:2-3 we find Jesus making a promise to prepare a place for us and receive us to be with Him. It’s the Bible’s greatest promise!

Let’s look at this promise from Jesus’ perspective. When we do we discover two themes: “Preparation” and “Anticipation”.

Preparation…

“…I go to prepare a place for you.” (John 14:2)

My wife and I are busy preparing a nursery for the baby we’re expecting this July. It’s being decorating with colorful pictures to look at and toys to play with and we’re buying him nice clothes and plenty of diapers so he’ll be happy and comfortable when he arrives. Our goal is to create a place which will be an outward example of our inward love for him.

In the same way, Jesus is busy preparing heaven for us. His goal is for heaven to be an outward example of His inward love for us.

Anticipation…

“…I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” (John 14:3)

Oh, how we long to see our baby! We long to touch his face, to hold him in our arms, to shower him with love as we show him wonderful things.

So it is with Jesus. He longs to hold and shower us with His love. Imagine the great smile on His face as He shows us all the glorious things He’s prepared for those who love Him. We can’t even begin to understand how wonderful it will be (1 Corinthians 2:9).

When we arrive Jesus will shout for joy, “”I am making everything new!” (Revelation 21:5) and we will be introduced to a place where every tear will be wiped away and where the pain and problems of this world won’t even come to mind (Revelation 21:4). It will be a place where the blind will see his beautiful face, the deaf will hear his gentle voice, the lame will dance for joy, and the mute will sing praises to Him (Isaiah 35:5-6).

And we will spend all eternity in His perfect love.

Why Jesus Must Return

by A.W. Pink

Is there any real need for Christ to return? So far as God’s children are concerned only one answer is possible to this question – “yes”.

Christians of every shade of religious belief are agreed that there is an imperative need for our Lord to come back again. As to the precise character of that need, as to the particular urgency of that need, opinions may vary, but concerning the need itself this is universally admitted.

Even post-millennialist (Those who believe Jesus will come back for His Church after the Tribulation) teach that Christ must come back at the end of time to judge the wicked and reward the righteous. But we hope to show that the need for His return is much deeper and much wider than the reason put forth by the post-millennialist.

Suppose Christ never returns–then what? The present order of things cannot continue indefinitely; such a thought is unthinkable. No one is satisfied with present conditions. Even those who despise the teachings of God’s Word hope for a better day, a Golden Age, an era of blessedness, such as this earth has never yet witnessed. And pre- millennialist (Those who believe Jesus will come back for His Church before the Tribulation) believe that this Golden Age can be ushered in by nothing short of the personal return of Christ Himself. Here then are a few reasons why we believe the Redeemer (Jesus Christ) must come back again.

CHRIST’S RETURN IS NECESSARY BECAUSE OF OLD TESTAMENT PROPHECY…
It is very apparent to any one who has read thoughtfully through the Old Testament that the First Advent (Jesus first coming) of our Lord did not exhaust the burden and scope of the numerous predictions which had been made concerning Him.

Many of the things foretold of Israel’s Messiah were not accomplished during the days when He dwelt among men. Many of the promises found in God’s Word connected with the Person of Christ, still await their ratification. While it is true that the First Advent of the Lord Jesus literally and remarkable fulfilled many of the Old Testament prophecies concerning Him, yet, it is also true that many others were not then fulfilled. To several of these we shall now call our readers attention.

“And I will put enmity between you (the “serpent”) and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; it shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel” – Genesis 3:15

Genesis 3:15 is not a single prophecy but a compound one and at least seven separate predictions are included in it. Let’s look a little more closely:

The woman is to have a seed: as we know, this pointed forward to our Lord’s humanity.
He was to be peculiarly the woman’s “seed,” not the man’s, hence we read, “When the fullness of time was come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman” (Galations 4:4).

The woman’s “Seed” was to bruise the Serpent: in other words, Satan was to be His particular antagonist.
He was to bruise the Serpent’s head.

He Himself was to be bruised in the “heel” by the Serpent; and hence it is written, He was “bruised for our iniquities” (Isaiah 53:5)

There was to be “enmity” between the Serpent and the one who gave birth to the “Seed,” namely Israel (Revelation 12:1-6). And then, after making mention of the enmity between the Serpent and the woman, we read,

“And between thy seed–the Serpent’s “seed,” i.e., the Son of Perdition–and her “Seed.” In other words, this age long “enmity” was to head up in a conflict between the Antichrist and the true Christ.
For this study it is sufficient to single out the fourth and fifth of the above items, which, in their historical order, have been reversed.

“Thou shalt bruise His heel.” That old Serpent the Devil was to be permitted to attack the wound the only vulnerable part of our Lord’s person–His humanity, here intimated by the word “heel.” This portion of prophecy was fulfilled when Jesus was crucified. No sooner was the Lord Jesus born in Bethlehem of Judea than the “Dragon” (Satan) sought to encompass His destruction (Revelation 12:4). Immediately following His baptism, which was the inauguration of His public ministry, He was tempted or “tried” by the Devil for forty days (Mark 1:13). On the eve of His crucifixion our Lord expressly declared, “This is your hour, and the Power of Darkness: (Luke 22:53). Thus was Satan allowed to bruise the “heel” of the woman’s Seed.

But we also read, “It shall bruise your head,” that is, Christ shall bruise Satan’s “head.” The head is the seat and source of power, and in the Scripture we are now considering is placed in sharp antithesis with the “heel” of the woman’s Seed. Stripped of its prophetic symbolism, it can only mean that Christ is to depose Satan and reduce him to a state of impotency. This interpretation is fully confirmed in Revelation 20 where we learn that a day is coming when the Devil shall be bound and cast into the Bottomless Pit to remain there securely confined throughout the Millennial Era. What we now desire to emphasize is, that, this part of the prophecy was not fulfilled when our Lord was upon earth before, and has not yet been fulfilled. Therefore, if this prophecy is be realized our Lord must return to this earth and deprive the Devil of his power, for He alone is competent for such a task. Again; we read in Isaiah 9:6-7

“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever.”

Here again we meet with a prophecy which has already received a partial fulfillment, but which has not yet been completely realized. Unto Israel a Child was “born,” unto Israel a Son was “given;” but, during the days of His First Advent the “government” for He is not yet seated upon His own “throne: (Revelation 3:21). Notice that, above, it is repeated “of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end.” His “government” and “peace” are inseparably connected. The latter part of this prophecy therefore looks forward to the time of His Second Advent (Christ’s Second Coming), for “When the Son of Man shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then shall He sit upon the throne of His glory” (Matthew 25:31). Then will it be that He shall inaugurate a Reign of Peace, for then it shall be (and not till then) that “He shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plough-shares, and their spears into pruning-hooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more” (Micah 4:3). Thus we see that the declarations of the Prophetic Word require and necessitate the personal return of Christ to this earth, for only then will they be literally and completely fulfilled. Many other Old Testament predictions could be cited to the same effect, but we’ll look at only one more.

“Behold, the days come, says the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth. In His days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely: and this is His name whereby He shall be called, the Lord our Righteousness.” (Jeremiah 23:5-7)

First notice that unto David (Israel) God promised to raise up a King who should reign and prosper. Without a doubt this prophecy refers to our Lord Jesus Christ who was born “King of the Jews” (Matthew 2:2), for it was uttered shortly after the Jews were carried down into Babylon, since which they have had no human King. It needs no argument to prove that the terms of this prophecy were certainly not fulfilled at the time of our Lord’s First Advent, for then, the Jews would not own Him, but demanded His death, and when Pilate inquired of them, “Shall I crucify your King?” (John 19:15), the leaders of the nation answered, “We have no king but Caesar.”

Furthermore, this prophecy was not fulfilled when our Lord took His seat at the right hand of the Majesty on high, for note, it says that Israel’s King shall “execute judgment and justice in the earth,” not “from the heavens.” Again; we observe that it declares, “In His days Judah (the two tribes) shall be saved, and Israel (the ten tribes) shall dwell safely” which certainly did not come to pass during the days of our Lord’s humiliation. No, this prophecy, like scores of other Messianic predictions recorded in the Old Testament, looks forward to the time of our Lord’s Second Coming to the earth, which is imperative if the terms of this prophecy are to be realized.

Even so, come Lord Jesus! (Revelation 22:20)

Old Testament Types of Antichrist

by A.W. Pink

(NOTE: This study is an edited version from A.W. Pink’s book “Antichrist”)

“In the volume of the book it is written of Me” (Heb. 10:7), said the Lord Jesus. Christ is the key to the Scriptures — “Search the Scriptures they are they which testify of Me,” are His words; and the Scriptures to which He had reference were not the four Gospels, for they were not then written, but the writings of Moses and the prophets. The Old Testament Scriptures, then, are something more than a compilation of historical narratives, something more than the record of a system of social and religious legislation, or a code of ethics.

The Old Testament Scriptures are, fundamentally, a stage on which we’re shown, in vivid symbolism, stupendous events of the future. The events recorded in the Old Testament were actual occurrences, yet were they also types. (A type is an example or illustration that points to a person or an event). Throughout the Old Testament dispensations God caused to be shadowed forth things which must yet come to pass.

This is in full accord with a basic law in the economy of God. Nothing is brought to maturity at once. As it is in the natural world, so it is in the spiritual: there is first the blade, then the ear, and then the full corn in the ear. So there is first the shadow, and then the substance; the type, and then the antitype.

“Whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning” (Rom. 15:4). Israel’s tabernacle was “a figure for the time then present” (Heb. 9:8, 9), as well as the example and “shadow of heavenly things” (Heb. 8:5).

Concerning the history of Abraham, his wives and his children, the apostle was inspired to write “which things are an allegory” (Gal. 4:24). These and other passages which might be quoted witness plainly to the typical meaning of portions of the Old Testament.

Many of God’s servants have written at length upon the Passover, the brazen serpent, the Tabernacle, etc., as well as upon the many ways in which such men as Abel, Noah, Isaac, Moses, David, etc. prefigured the Savior. But strange to say, very little seems to have been written upon those who prefigure the Antichrist.

So far as we are aware practically nothing has been given out concerning the many Bible characters of ill fame, who foreshadowed that coming one, that occupies such a prominent place in the prophetic scriptures. A wide field is here opened for study, and we take pleasure in now submitting to the careful perusal of the reader the results of our own imperfect researches, hoping that it may lead others to make a more complete examination of the subject for themselves.

Besides the plain and literal sense of Scripture, there is also a mystical sense, hidden beneath the surface and which can only be discovered as we, in dependence on the Holy Spirit, diligently compare scripture with scripture. In pursuing the latter we need not only to proceed with due caution, but in “fear and trembling,” lest we devise mysteries of our own imagination, and thus pervert to one use what belongs to another. The principle which will safeguard us is to thoroughly acquaint ourselves with the antitypes.

Let nothing be regarded as a type unless we are sure there is an exact correspondence with the antitype. This will preserve us from erroneously supposing that any person who is clearly a type of either Christ or the Antichrist is so in every detail of his life.

Thus Moses was plainly a type of Christ as our Mediator, and in many other respects too, but in his failures and in other details of his personal history he was not a type of Christ. So, too, with those who foreshadowed the Antichrist: not everything recorded of them prefigured the character or deeds of the Man of Sin.

We shall now look at six Bible characters, each of which strikingly typified the Antichrist.

CAIN…

It is indeed solemn to discover that the very first man born into this world prefigured the Man of Sin. He did so in a least seven respects.

– First, we may observe that in 1 John 3:12 we are told “Cain was of that Wicked One,” (the Devil). Of none other is this particular expression used. The Antichrist will also, in a special sense, be “of that Wicked one,” for the Devil is said to be his father (John 8:44).

– Second, Cain was a religious hypocrite. This is seen in the fact that at first he posed as a worshipper of God, but the emptiness of his pretensions were quickly evidenced; for, when the Lord refused his offering, Cain was “very wroth” (Gen. 4:5). As such he clearly prefigured that one who will first claim to be the Christ, only to stand forth later as His denier (1 John 2:22).

– Third, Cain occupied the position of ruler. Said the Lord to him, “Unto to thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him,” that is, over Abel (Gen. 4:7). Such, too, will be the position filled by the Antichrist — he shall be a Ruler over men (Rev 13:3).

– Fourth, in murdering his brother Abel, Cain foreshadowed the wicked martyrdom of the Tribulation saints by the Son of Perdition.

– Fifth, Cain was a liar. After the murder of Abel, when the Lord asked Cain, “Where is Abel thy brother?” he answered, “I know not” (Gen. 4:9). In like manner deceit and falsehood will characterize him who is appropriately named “the Lie” (2 Thess. 2:11).

– Sixth, God’s judgment descended upon Cain. So far as we know from the Scripture record, no human eye witnessed the dastardly murder of Abel, and doubtless Cain deemed himself secure from any penal consequences. But if so, he reckoned without God. The Lord announced to him, “Thy brother’s blood crieth unto Me from the ground,” and then He declared, “And now art thou cursed from the earth” (Gen. 4:10). So, too, in his reckless conceit, the Antichrist will imagine that he can defy God and slay His people. But his blasphemous delusions will be quickly dispelled.

– Seventh, Cain was made to exclaim, “My punishment is greater than I can bear” (Gen. 4:13). Such indeed will be the awful portion meted out to the Antichrist — he shall be “cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone” (Rev. 19:20)

LAMECH…

“And Lamech said unto his wives: Adah and Zillah, hear my voice; Ye wives of Lamech, hearken unto my speech: For I have slain a man for wounding me, and a young man for bruising me. If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, Truly Lamech seventy and seven fold” (Gen. 4:23, 24).

The record of this man’s life is exceedingly brief, but from the little that is recorded about him we may discover at least seven parallelisms between him and the Antichrist.

– First, the meaning of his name. Lamech signifies “powerful.” This was an appropriate name for one who foreshadowed the Man of Sin who, as the Head of the United States of the World, will be powerful governmentally. He will also be mighty in his person, for we are told that the Dragon shall give power unto him (Rev. 13:4).

– Second, in the fact that Lamech was a descendant of Cain (Gen. 4:17-19), not Seth, we see that he sprang from the evil line.

– Third, he was the seventh from fallen Adam, as though to intimate that the cycle of depravity was completed in him. So the Antichrist will be not only the culmination of satanic craft and power, but as well, the climax of human wickedness — the Man of Sin.

– Fourth, the first thing predicted of Lamech is his “lawlessness.” “Lamech took unto him two wives” (Gen. 4:19). As such he violated the marriage law and disobeyed the command of God (Gen. 2:24). Clearly, then, he foreshadowed the “Lawless One” (2 Thess. 2:8).

– Fifth, like Cain before him, Lamech was a murderer. His confession is, “I have slain a man for wounding me, and a young man for bruising me” (Gen. 4:23). In this, too, he foreshadowed the Man of blood and of violence.

– Sixth, he was filled with pride. This comes out in two details. First, he says to his wives, “Hear my voice; Ye wives of Lamech, hearken unto my speech” (Gen. 4:23). Second, in his arrogant self-importance — “If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, truly LAMECH seventy and seven fold” (Gen. 4:24). This appears to mean that Lamech had slain a man for wounding him, and mad with passion, he jeered ironically at God’s dealings with Cain.

– Seventh, in the fact that the very next thing recorded after the brief notice of Lamech is the birth of Seth (the one from whom, according to the flesh, Christ descended) who set aside the line of Cain — for on his birth Eve exclaimed, “God hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel whom Cain slew” (Gen. 4:25) — thus we have a beautiful foreshadowing of the millennial reign of the Lord Jesus following the overthrow of the Antichrist.

NIMROD…

This personal type of the Antichrist is deeply interesting and remarkable full in its details. His exploits are recorded in Gen. 10 and 11, and it is most significant that his person and history are there introduced at the point immediately preceding God’s call of Abraham from among the Gentiles and His bringing him into the promised land. Thus history repeats itself. Just before God again gathers Abraham’s descendants from out of the lands of the Gentiles there will arise one who will fill out the picture here typically outlined by Nimrod. Let us examine the details of this type.

– First, the meaning of his name is most suggestive. Nimrod signifies “The Rebel.” A fit designation was this for a man that foreshadowed the Lawless One, who shall oppose and exalt himself above all that is called God (2 Thess. 2:4), and who shall “stand up against the Prince of princes” (Dan. 8:25).

– Second, we are told that he was a son of Cush — “And Cush begat Nimrod” (Gen. 10:8), and Cush was a son of Ham, who was cursed by Noah. Nimrod, then, was not a descendant of Shem, from whom Christ sprang, nor of Japheth; but he came from Ham. It is remarkable that these men who typified the Antichrist came from the evil line.

– Third, we are told that Nimrod “began to be a mighty one in the earth” (Gen. 10:8). Four times over is this term “mighty” connected with this one who prefigured him “whose coming is after the working of Satan, with all power and signs and lying wonders” (2 Thess. 2:9). But observe that it is first said, “He began to be mighty,” which seems to suggest the idea that he struggled for the pre-eminence and obtained it by mere force of will.

How this corresponds with the fact that the Man of Sin first appears as “the little horn” and by force of conquest attains to the position of King of kings needs only to be pointed out. It is also significant that the Hebrew word for “mighty” in Gen. 10:9 is “gibbor” which is translated several times “Chief” and “Chieftain.”

– Fourth, it is also added, “Nimrod the mighty hunter before the Lord” which means that he pushed his designs in brazen defiance of his Maker. The words “mighty hunter before the Lord” are found twice in Gen. 10:9. This repetition in so short a narrative is highly significant. If we compare the expression with a similar one in Gen. 6:11, — “The earth also (in the days of Noah) was corrupt before God” — the impression conveyed is that this “Rebel” pursued his impious designs in open defiance of the Almighty. The contents of Gen. 11 abundantly confirm this interpretation. In like manner, of the Antichrist it is written, “And the King shall do according to his will, and he shall exalt himself and magnify himself above every god (ruler), and shall speak marvelous things against the God of gods” (Dan. 11:36).

– Fifth, Nimrod was a “Man of Blood.” In 1 Chron. 1:10 — “And Cush begat Nimrod; he began to be mighty upon the earth.” The Chaldea paraphrase of this verse says, “Cush begat Nimrod who began to prevail in wickedness for he slew innocent blood and rebelled against Jehovah.” This, coupled with the expression “a mighty Hunter before the Lord,” suggests that he relentlessly sought out and slew God’s people. As such, he accurately portrayed the bloody and deceitful Man (Psa. 5:6), the violent Man (Psa. 140:1).

– Sixth, Nimrod was a King — “the beginning of his kingdom was Babel” (Gen. 10:10. Thus he was King of Babylon, which is also one of the many titles of the Antichrist (Isa. 14:4). In the verses which follow in Gen. 10 we read, “He went out into Assyria and built Ninevah, and the city Rehoboth, and Calah,” etc. (Gen. 10:11). From these statements it is evident that Nimrod’s ambition was to establish a world empire.

– Seventh, mark his inordinate desire for fame. His consuming desire was to make for himself a name. Here again the antitype marvelously corresponds with the type, for the Man of Sin is expressly denominated “King over all the children of pride” (Job 41:34).

What is recorded in Gen. 10 about Nimrod supplies the key to the first half of Gen. 11 which tells of the building of the Tower of Babel. Gen. 10:10 informs us that the beginning of Nimrod’s kingdom was Babel. In the language of that day Babel meant “the gate of God,” but afterwards, because of the judgment which the Lord there inflicted, it came to mean “Confusion.” That at the time Nimrod founded Babel this word signified “the gate (the figure of official position) of God,” intimates that he not only organized an imperial government over which he presided as king, but that he also instituted a new and idolatrous system of worship. If the type be perfect, and we are fully assured it is so, then, as the Lawless One will yet do, Nimrod demanded and received Divine honors. In all probability, it was at this point that idolatry was introduced.

Nimrod is not directly mentioned in Gen. 11, but from the statements made about him in chap. 10 there cannot be any doubt that he was the “Chief” and “King” who organized and headed the movement and rebellion there described: “And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth” (11:4). Here we behold a most blatant defiance of God, a deliberate refusal to obey His commands given through Noah — “Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth” (9:1).

But they said, “Let us make us a name lest we be scattered upon the face of the whole earth.” As we have seen, Nimrod’s ambition was to establish a world-empire. To accomplish this, at least two things were necessary: First, a center, a great headquarters; and second, a motive for the inspiration and encouragement of his followers. The former was furnished in the city of Babylon: the latter was to be supplied in the “let us make us a name.” It was inordinate desire for fame. The idea of the Tower (considered in the light of its setting) seems that of strength, a stronghold, rather than eminence.

To sum up, in Nimrod and his schemes we behold Satan’s initial attempt to raise up an universal ruler of men. In his inordinate desire for fame, in the mighty power that he wielded, in his ruthless and brutal methods, in his blatant defiance of the Creator, in his founding of the kingdom of Babel, in his assuming to himself Divine honors, in the fact that the Holy Spirit has placed the record of these things just before the inspired account of God’s bringing Abraham into Canaan — pointing forward to the re-gathering of Israel in Palestine, immediately after the overthrows of the Lawless One — and finally, in the Divine destruction of his kingdom — described in the words, “Let Us go down and there confound their language” (Gen. 11:7), which so marvelously pictures the descent of Christ from heaven to vanquish His impious rival — we cannot fail to see that we have a wonderfully complete typical picture of the person, the work, and the destruction of the Antichrist.

PHARAOH…

We have in mind the Pharaoh of the book of Exodus. His history and character are described at much greater length than the other personal types of the Antichrist which have been before us, and therefore more parallelisms are to be found here. We shall aim to be suggestive rather than exhaustive.

– First, Pharaoh was king of Egypt which, in Scripture, is the lasting symbol of the world. In like manner, the one whom he so strikingly prefigured will be Head of the world-kingdom.

– Second, the Pharaoh of Exodus came from Assyria (Isa. 52:4); so also will the Antichrist first rise in that land.

– Third, Ex. 1 presents him to our view as the merciless persecutor of the Hebrews, embittering their lives by hard bondage.

– Fourth, he is next seen as the one who sought to cut off Israel from being a nation, giving orders that all the male children should be slain in infancy.

– Fifth, he blatantly defied God. When Moses and Aaron appeared before him and said, “Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Let My people go, that they may hold a feast unto Me in the wilderness,” his arrogant reply was, “Who is the Lord, that I should obey His voice to let Israel go?” (Ex. 5:1, 2).

– Sixth, God’s two witnesses performed miracles before Pharaoh (Ex. 7:10); so, too, will God’s two witnesses in the Tribulation period work miracles before the Beast (Rev. 11:6, 7).

– Seventh, Pharaoh had magical resources at his disposal (Ex. 7:11), as the Antichrist will have at his (2 Thess. 2:9).

– Eighth, Pharaoh made fair promises to the Hebrews, only to break them (Ex. 8:8, 15). In this, too, he foreshadowed the Antichrist in his perfidy and treachery toward Israel.

– Ninth, he met with a drastic end at the hands of God (Psa. 136:15).

– Tenth, he was overthrown at the time that Israel started out for the promised land: so Antichrist will be cast into the Lake of Fire just before Israel enters into everlasting possession of their promised inheritance.

In all of these ten respects (and in others which the student may search out for himself) Pharaoh was a striking and accurate type of the Antichrist.

GOLIATH…

– First, his name means “Soothsayer” which at once connects him with the powers of evil.

– Second, he was a giant, and thus, like Saul, prefigured the Super-man.

– Third, he was the enemy of Israel.

– Fourth, his consuming egotism was displayed in his blatant challenge, “I defy the armies of Israel” (1 Sam. 17:10).

– Fifth, the mysterious number 666 (the number of the Antichrist) is connected with Goliath. Note the three sixes. (a) He was six cubits high (1 Sam. 17:4). (b) Six pieces of armor are enumerated — helmet, coat of mail, greaves, target, staff, and shield (1 Sam. 17:5[ndash ]7). (c) His spear’s head weighed six hundred shekels of iron (1 Sam. 17:7).

– Sixth, he was slain by the sword (see 1 Sam. 17:51).

– Seventh, he was slain by David — type of Christ. In each of these respects he foreshadowed the Antichrist.

ABSALOM…

– First, the meaning of his name is very significant. “Absalom” means “father of peace.” A careful reading of his history reveals the fact that, again and again, he posed as a man of peace, while war was in his heart. So the Antichrist will pose as the promised Prince of peace, and for a time it will appear that he has actually ushered in the Millennium. But ere long his violent and bloody character will be revealed.

– Second, Absalom was the son of David, and therefore a Jew. but Absalom was a son of David by Maacah, the daughter of the Gentile king of Jeshur (2 Sam. 3:3). So, too, will the Antichrist be a veritable king among men.

– Third, Absalom was a man of blood (2 Sam. 13, etc.).

– Fourth, Absalom sought to obtain the kingdom by flatteries (2 Sam. 15:2-6); cf Dan. 11:21, 23.

– Fifth, he cloaked his rebellion by a pretense of religion (read 2 Sam. 15:7, 8).

– Sixth, he was the immediate cause of the faithful followers of David being driven from Jerusalem into the wilderness (2 Sam. 15:14-16).

– Seventh, he reared up a pillar unto himself (2 Sam. 18:18), which clearly foreshadowed the image which the Antichrist will cause to be set up unto himself.

– Eighth, he met with a violent end (2 Sam. 18:14).

There are quite a number of others who foreshadowed the Antichrist in one or more of the outstanding features of his character and career. For instance, there is Balak who, accompanied by Baalam the prophet sought to curse and destroy Israel — a striking foreshadowing of the Beast with his ally the False Prophet. There is Adoni-zedek, mentioned in Joshua 10, and who headed a federation of ten kings; it is remarkable that his name signifies “lord of righteousness” which is what the Antichrist will claim to be as he comes forth on the white horse (Rev. 6).

Almost every prominent feature of the Antichrist’s person and career was foreshadowed by some Old Testament character. The subject is intensely interesting, and we trust that many of our readers will be encouraged to pursue it further for themselves.