Is this a Protestant thing or a Catholic thing?
The only people I hear complaining about the
Anti-Christ are Protestants. Is this a popular topic
among Catholics?

I am an Ex-Protestant gone Catholic, and I tend to be the only one
making reference to the Anti-Christ and feeling awkward about it when
everyone looks at me funny when I say it.

So…am I missing something here?

In spite of Luther’s hyperbole against the Pope, I think most Lutherans understand the term “anti-Christ” to be more of a state of being or status - and not a specific individual such as depicted in the “Left Behind” series.

The priest at my parish has mentioned the Anti-Christ a few time during the homilies. Other than that, I don’t recall anyone else who has mentioned it. I am also a former Protestant. Don’t feel awkward about saying it.:smiley:

The writers of the Letters of John and Revelation use it.

Some US Futurists hold that sometime prior to the expected return of Jesus, there will be a period of “great tribulation” during which the Antichrist, indwelt and controlled by Satan, will attempt to win supporters with false peace, supernatural signs. He will silence all that defy him by refusing to “receive his mark” on their right hands or forehead. This “mark” will be required to legally partake in the end-time economic system. Some Futurists believe that the Antichrist will be assassinated half way through the Tribulation, being revived and indwelt by Satan. The Antichrist will continue on for three and a half years following this “deadly wound”.

You should not feel awkwark because there is nothing odd about it. I have heard priests and catechetical leaders discuss it and as Catholics we should not assume or pretend it is a Protestant thing because it is not.

Revelation of John 17:8
The beast that you saw was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.

There are some who think this may refer ro Alexander thw Great. The story goes that as Alexander approached Jerusalem, the High Priest came out to meet him. He said “look here, you are mentioned in our scriptures” -

Daniel 7:6:
After this I beheld, and lo another, like a leopard, which had upon the back of it four wings of a fowl; the beast had also four heads; and dominion was given to it.

They say that it corresponds to this verse -

Revelations 13:2 And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.

They say that he is to come back from hell so that all people know that he was, he died, and he returned, thus proving he has incredible power. IF it is Alexander, then that makes some sense because we have statues of him and people will be able to tell he at least looks like the statues and busts of a famous leader. It is also known that Alexander was a TYRANT.

I am also an ex-Protestant, turned Catholic. This is not just a “Protestant thing”, however, it has been my experience that Protestants spend more time on this subject. In my Protestant days, we studied and speculated about the book of Revelation and the anti-Christ. We saw Revelation as strictly a future prophesy. As Dr. Scott Hahn points out, Revelation could very well be a historical picture of life during Roman rule and a future prophesy and a picture of the Mass (all at the same time!). Revelation is very cryptic and this leads some to speculation on numbers and the anti-Christ. I get more from Revelation when I concentrate on the message, not getting caught up in the hype of “who is it”.

Revelation can be useful when studied, but I see no benefit in turning it into a witch hunt.

During my RCIA, the priest compared the “anti-Christ hunting”, done by some Protestants and the “apparitions of the BVM” that are hunted by some Catholics. His point was that the time could be better spent in study or prayer or acts of charity than to be spent in search of shadows.

So, it isn’t just a Protestant thing.

Like you I’m an ex-Protestant gone Catholic, and I notice pretty much the same thing. Unless I’m in the wrong circles, Catholics don’t seem to talk about the anti-Christ or end times much. Nor do they say much about Protestants, whereas (some) Protestants are quick to condemn Catholicism, and keep pointing to what they see as “signs” of the end-times, anti-Christ etc.

I’m afraid I still have quasi-Protestant views on the topic, and one of my personal crank beliefs is that I think the anti-Christ is around today, in the sense of a particular person. I realise there are different ways of looking at the term, but that’s my opinion.

However in Catholic circles, I don’t say much about it, other than to a select few that I know very well. And I don’t think they take much notice when I do.

It appears to be one of those cultural differences between Catholics and Protestants.

Interesting. I have never heard that one, but one thing that take on AntiChrist is forgetting are all the other instances of ‘antichrists’, specifically, the in the book of Daniel (c.8) and Ezekiel, but also the other prophetic books.

I stopped speculating on all this “who is it?” stuff decades ago when I adopted more of a historicist/idealist view of Revelation. I do NOT see it as referring to some future “tribulation” but to the entire history of Christ’s Church on earth and a drawing back of the curtain to show us what is behind all that goes on in the history of the Church.

I think some Catholics believe the book of Revelations was referring to Nero as the anti-Christ.

Most Catholics are not concerned with the anti Christ because it does not matter much when the anti Christ appears. We need to be ready for our own demise regardless of when we are called.

It may be a real bummer IF the anti-Christ were to reveal himself in the next year or two, but he hasn’t shown up for 2000 years, why would this day and age be so much different. He may not show up for another 10,000 years or 100,000 years in which case we would have all gotten into a frenzy for no reason.

Some folks are saying we are moving into a new age. I’m not sure what this means. IF it means the time for revelations is at hand, then that would be quite ominous. Jesus tells us to look for signs like a women at birth… are wars, earth quakes and natural disasters becoming more and more frequent ???

IF they are, then watch out !

Well, perusing Wikipedia’s list of ongoing military conflicts, one sees no recent explosion in the number and intensity of wars on a global level. The online encyclopedia does not seem to have a corresponding article on earthquakes and natural disasters, but to the best of my knowledge there have been only a handful of notable such incidents in the past few years, among them the 2011 earthquake-tsunami in Japan and the 2010 earthquake in Haiti.

Well, perusing Wikipedia’s list of continuing armed conflicts, one sees no recent explosion in the number and intensity of wars on a global level. The online encyclopedia does not seem to have a corresponding article on earthquakes and natural disasters, but to the best of my knowledge there have been only a handful of notable such incidents in the past few years, among them the 2011 earthquake-tsunami in Japan and the 2010 earthquake in Haiti.

Doesn’t “Christ” mean messiah? If so then the OT is talking about false messiahs.

I think “Christ” means messiah, so anti-Christ should mean messiah who comes prior to the real messiah.

It was difficult to know last night (in my part of the world) whether a post actually went through after it was submitted–CAF was clearly experiencing technical difficulties.

If a moderator is reading, please delete my first post in this thread and fix the link to the Wikipedia article on Japan’s 2011 tsunami-earthquake in the second post to this.

I ashamedly used to believe in an antichrist as portrayed in the *Left Behind *series. :blush: The antichrist in the book of Revelation is Ceaser Nero, you can easily google how the numerical value of his name is 666. In Greek I believe, it’s 616. Many early commentators have both changed the numerical value of this passage AND commented of its application to Ceaser Nero. You’ll find many other figures across the internet that people have tried to apply this title to. However, it’s safe to say that it was Ceasar Nero, anything else is just trying to make the foot fit the glass shoe. Nero started a fire in 100 AD and used the Christians as a scape-goat. The Emperor of Rome was also considered “god-incarnate”; which would be completely blasphemous in the Jewish tradition, and implicate him as an antichrist in Christian tradition. Around the time of his father’s death a commet appeared in the sky that Emperor Nero interpreted as the proclamation of his deity, whereas the Christian writers re-interpreted it to mean that God is this humble Jew born into poverty, not a rutheless, powerful and prideful ruler. You can find allusions to many of these features in the apochryphal language of Revelation. You can almost see a complete contrast and rivalry to the theology of the Christians and the theology of Pagan Rome.


Nero was the farthest from an Anti-Christ as one could come.

The Anti-Christ WILL be against everything Christ, but disguise and deception is necessary.

Well a first century Christian writer would consider it disguise and deception to rule over the Roman Empire claiming to be God-incarnate and using the Christian community as a scape-goat for the fire *that he *started. -.-

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