Editor's Note: Pastor Roger Barrier's "Ask Roger" column regularly appears at Preach It, Teach It. Every week at Crosswalk, Dr. Barrier puts nearly 40 years of experience in the pastorate to work answering questions of doctrine or practice for laypeople, or giving advice on church leadership issues. Email him your questions at roger@preachitteachit.org.

Dear Roger,

Is Obama the Antichrist?

Sincerely,

Several questioners during the last several months, including some of the same people who once asked me, "Is Bill Clinton the Antichrist?"

Dear Questioners,

Is President Obama the Antichrist? No, I think not. According to how I read the Scriptures, the Antichrist will rise up out of the ashes of the old Roman Empire, subduing three nations and forcing the others to join in a coalition that moves to destroy Israel—leading up to the Battle of Armageddon (Daniel 7-9Ezekiel 38; Revelation 13:2-316:16-21  and 17:9-18). While there is some question as to his heritage, the Antichrist will most likely be a Jew. Obama fails to qualify on several accounts including: he is not European and not a Jew. He is not, nor apparently will he ever be the leader of one or more of the nations in Europe.

Before we go further, let's remember that Paul distinctly tells us to pray for our governmental leaders. Paul's reasoning is that those who rule over us need all the help they can get. The easier and better governmental leaders are able to do their jobs, the better off we all will be (Romans 13:1-7). We need to pray for President Obama—not vilify him just because his political leanings might be different from ours.

To put things in perspective, my most intensive prayer for our President is that he lead!

Remember, the Constitution is structured to keep the minority from being over run by the majority. Stubbornly refusing to compromise is the abdication of true leadership.

It's unfortunate that many rumors attempt to tie Obama to the Antichrist. Some are really nasty. One rumor has it that the Antichrist will be a man of Muslim/Arab descent, in his 40s, and will rule for 42 months (close to the length of a U.S. presidency). President Obama declares a Christian faith and emphatically denies he is a Muslim—and he is not of Arab descent. The "42 months" idea occurs in numerous prophetical passages, but there is absolutely nothing to connect the 42 months with the 4-year (48 months) first-term of a U.S. President. Rumors and wild speculation only distract us from perhaps identifying the real Antichrist.

Now, let's continue. The Antichrist will be a man indwelt by Satan himself (Revelation 12:7-9). The indwelling of the Antichrist apparently occurs three-and-a-half years after the Antichrist engineers a peace treaty between the coalition of European nations and Israel. Israel will dwell safe and secure for three and one-half years (Ezekiel 38:10-1114-16  and Daniel 9:27) until shortly after the Antichrist is Satan indwelt. Then, all Hell breaks out on the earth. The Antichrist will slaughter a pig and set up a graven image of himself on the altar of a rebuilt temple in Jerusalem (Daniel 9:24-27). Jesus verified this image as the Abomination of Desolation which initiates the greatest slaughter of Jews in history. Jesus's advice for the inhabitants of Israel at this time is to "get out of town" as soon as possible. I'm using The Message paraphrase Bible below to give Jesus's teaching a more contemporary rendering: