On March 16, 2013, I was interviewed by Jan Markell, Founder and President of Olive Tree Ministries. Jan has written eight major books with prominent Christian publishing houses. She has produced a dozen DVDs, some featured on Sky Angel. At one time she traveled full time across America as a speaker. Since 2000, Jan has been broadcasting her nationally syndicated "Understanding the Times" radio program over the airwaves and Internet. It is a great source of news and commentary-driven information.
Jan and I spent the one hour radio program discussing the characteristics and heritage of the Antichrist, called The Man of Lawlessness, and the False Prophet. We remind people that the catastrophic calamities happening today are setting the stage for the Tribulation when all this mystery unfolds.
Jan Markell: Concerning the Antichrist's heritage, David, you believe he will be a Gentile? That comes heavily out of a verse in Revelation 13 about the beast coming out of the sea, right? How do you conclude therefore that the Antichrist will likely be a Gentile, not a Jew, nor a Muslim, but a Gentile?
Dr. Reagan: The verse in Revelation 13 that you just described is a good reference. This passage talks about the Beast coming out of the sea. The sea is used as a symbol in prophecy for the foreign nations of the world. The reference to land is usually a reference to Israel and a Jew.
The real key prophecy is the one over in Daniel 9 where it says that the Antichrist will rise out of the people who destroyed the Temple. The people who destroyed the Temple in 70 AD were the Romans. Therefore, the Antichrist will be a person of Roman heritage who will come out of Europe, as stated in Daniel 9:26.
Jan Markell: Do not believe that the Antichrist already knows his role? If he is alive today, and I think it might be a good guess that he is alive today, do you feel he does or does not know his role even as we speak? Or, is the conscious realization of his destiny going to have to happen at a later time?
Dr. Reagan: Jan, you raise two issues there, so let me speak about both of them for just a moment. First of all, you mentioned several times that you think that he is probably alive today. I think so, too. But, he has always been alive in a sense. Satan knows Bible prophecy, but he doesn't know the timing of it. Satan has always had an Antichrist candidate in the wings. There has always been someone alive at any point in history that could be Satan's candidate to be the Antichrist. The moment that God makes his move, Satan would then make his counter move and he would have his candidate ready. He has a candidate ready today. But, I don't think that candidate has the slightest idea that he is really the candidate to be the Antichrist, but I think Satan still has that candidate.
Jan Markell: I totally agree with you, David. I've said that many, many times. We can look back on history and see that there were obviously some very likely candidates, particularly in recent history. Even really going all the way, way, way back. Even during Roman times, the people were very, very evil people.
Jan Markell: The Antichrist goes by many names in the Bible: the Beast, the Man of Lawlessness, the Son of Perdition, and all sorts of other names in the Bible. The Antichrist also has a partner whom he hangs out with, and the Bible identifies him as the False Prophet. David, do you believe the False Prophet will have a Jewish heritage, and if so, how come?
Dr. Reagan: There is a strong possibility that the False Prophet will be Jewish, because in Revelation 13 it talks about the rise of the Antichrist as the beast coming up out of the sea, which is used in Bible prophecy as a euphemism for the nations. It says further down in the chapter in verse 11 about another beast coming up, but this one comes up out of the earth, or out of the land, with the original word there translated either way. Usually when there is a reference to the earth or the land in this kind of context, it is referring to Israel. So, there is a strong possibility that the False Prophet might be a person who has a Jewish Heritage.
There is likely not going to be a religious leader for the Antichrist during the first half of the Tribulation. The indication in Scripture is that during the first half of the Tribulation the Antichrist is probably going to take some religious world leader who is already on the scene, and he will rally the world behind him to basically form a world religion that will be a confederation of many different religions. This particular individual will have been already on the world scene.
The other indication in Scripture is that the Antichrist will become fed up with this one-world religious person, possibly because he begins to tell the Antichrist what to do. The Antichrist will turn on this man, this Harlot or Mystery Babylon, and gets rid of him. He then puts in his place this right hand guy called the False Prophet who then begins to organize really a whole new system of worship that is focused just on the Antichrist. The False Prophet is sort of the John the Baptist of the Antichrist; promoting him and getting people to worship him. I think initially the Antichrist is going to select some already known world leader and religion to head up the first church that he has during the first 3 1/2 years.
Jan Markell: We have seen a lot of religious-related events occur in 2013, especially concerning the focus on the Pope of Catholicism. We have seen Pope Benedict XVI step down. He is one of the few Pope's in the last 2,000 years who didn't die in office, which is usually the case. There has often been the case made that a Pope could fit a role of the False Prophet. Do you believe that is a possibility?
Dr. Reagan: It is a possibility. I wouldn't say for certain that is the case, but it certainly could be a possibility. There are after all Christians who are Jews, we call them Messianic Jews, and even among the leaders of the Catholic Church there are those who have a Jewish background. So, that could very well be. I'm not going to say for certain that is the situation, but it could be.
People have been saying that Pope Francis I is the last Pope and that he definitely will be the Antichrist, or at least he is going to be the False Prophet. I don't think that he will be the Antichrist. Whether he is the last Pope or not is another question. He certainly could be, because the signs of the times point to the soon return of Jesus. They indicate that He is at the very gates of Heaven waiting for His Father to tell Him to step out onto a cloud.
I certainly don't believe Francis is the last Pope based upon the Malachy prophecies, the Irish Saint from back in the 1100's. I think that whole thing is a fraud. The so-called prophecies are on the level with Nostradamus' prophecies. They are just so obtuse that nobody can understand what they mean until after the fact. In fact, they are kind of funny. They are kind of little one-liners that say, "The next Pope will have something to do with a rose." And then, Malachy believers will look up to see what Pope that was, and they discover that that Pope's mother liked roses, so that is a fulfillment of the prophecy. Just silliness, really!
In the fourth segment of Jan Markell's interview of Dr. David Reagan about his book The Man of Lawlessness: The Antichrist in the Tribulation, they will address why there is such a famine of teaching God's prophetic word.