By Hope Bolinger, Crosswalk.com
We're all familiar with the Holy Trinity: Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. But did you know an evil trinity of Satan's own design shows up in the end times? It should come as no surprise to us that Satan steals from God's original work. Satan never creates anything. He only twists what already exists. For instance, let's take a look at sex. God made this as a holy gift to be enjoyed in a monogamous marriage between a consenting husband and wife. But Satan has taken sex and perverted it, twisted it into pornography, sex before marriage, and so many other iterations of sin.
Apply the same principle to the unholy trinity. So who is the unholy trinity—in other words, what three parts make up this evil entity? What are the characteristics of the unholy trinity? And how will we know we've encountered this during the end times?
What Is the Unholy Trinity in the Bible?
Revelation 12 and 13 give us a clear depiction of this entity that shows up in the Last Days. Instead of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, we have, as GotQuestions describes, Satan, the antichrist, and the false prophet.
Let's break down each of these entities and the role they play in the end times.
Satan: We probably know the most about this section of the unholy trinity. Satan, once known as Lucifer, once lived in heaven with the other angels. Pride overtook him, and he managed to recruit one-third of heaven to follow him in his self-worship (Revelation 12:4). God cast out Satan and his demons from heaven. They await an eternal fate in the fiery lake at the end of Revelation. Satan, knowing this, hopes to drag as many people as possible with him to eternal damnation. He started by bringing sin into the world with Adam and Eve (Genesis 3) and will stop at nothing until his reign ends.
Antichrist: We've likely had a Christian tell us they know who the antichrist is. They tend to point to political leaders or leaders who have a significant amount of power. In truth, we probably haven't encountered him or her yet, or at least, they haven't made themselves known to be this figure who wreaks havoc in Revelation. How do we know this? Well someone needs to meet a certain amount of qualifications.
1) He/She needs to have major sway over the populace to the point where they are wooed by/love this figure (Revelation 13:3)
2) This figure needs a monumental amount of power over a one-world government, where they have control over religion, currency, and calendars (Revelation 13:1)
3) This figure needs to bring about a Roman revival and be vehemently anti-God and anti-Christian (Revelation 13:1)
There are many more characteristics, but we have yet to encounter a world leader who meets all of the criteria. Those who exercise discernment and who follow Christ will know when the antichrist steps onto the scene.
False Prophet: There are many "false prophets" today and throughout all time, but this one, in particular, performs "miracles" via demonic powers (Revelation 19:20). The false prophet will be in cahoots with the first beast (antichrist) and will lead many astray. Via the signs and wonders the false prophet performs, he or she will convince many to take on the Mark of the Beast. He or she will use the power of the tongue to sway many from barring themselves from heaven. After all, if someone takes on the Mark of the Beast, they prevent themselves from entering heaven. The false prophet will convince everyone to worship the antichrist.
Now that we have a grasp of each of the members of the unholy trinity, let's talk about their role in the end times.
What Will the Unholy Trinity Do in the End Times?
We've hinted in the above paragraphs about what will take place. The antichrist, via the powers of Satan, will rise to power. And the false prophet will woo others to follow and worship him.
Here is a list of some of the things the unholy trinity will do in the End Times.
- The Prophet will give authority to the Beast, who will be worshipped by all people (Revelation 13)
- The Beast will exercise worldwide power for a short period of time. Most Christians say seven years (Revelation 13)
- The antichrist will wage war against God's saints—persecuting and killing many Christians (Revelation 13)
- The False Prophet will continue to do demonic "miraculous" signs, including healing a fatal wound on the first beast (Revelation 13)
- The False Prophet commands the people to create an idolatrous image of the antichrist to worship it (Revelation 13)
- The Beasts will force all to take on the Mark of the Beast, which is the number 666. Anyone who does not take on the mark will not be allowed to purchase anything from food to homes (Revelation 13)
The unholy trinity will do far more in the End Times. But what's important to know is that their power will not last forever, that God will pour out his wrath to avenge the saints who were persecuted and slain, and that sometime before or after the seven years of Tribulation, God will rescue his saints and step onto the scene.
How Can We Recognize the Unholy Trinity?
To be honest, we will know. At least, if we are in the Word daily, listen to the voice of God often, we will know when a false shepherd enters the flock. As we approach the Last Days, many candidates seem viable for the various parts of the unholy trinity. We may have encountered people who use false, wooing words to get people to fall away from the church and to worship something else. Many world leaders seem like they've vying for the position of the antichrist.
But until the world leader quite literally rules the world, we have a little more time before the antichrist steps onto the scene.
Remember, that before these events can take place, the Gospel needs to be spread to every tribe and nation. Although we're close, we haven't quite reached that goal yet. We also would need to be under a one-world government before we can make a clear distinction about the identity of the antichrist. This means being under one currency, one rule, etc. Although some politicians have made moves to strive toward one currency for the whole world, we haven't gotten there quite yet.
Finally, the antichrist has to be vehemently non-Christian. He makes war against the saints of God, after all. Although many leaders have shown non-Christian ideals and some abhorrence to religion, no one has quite matched the criteria above. They tend to be more subtle with their anger against Christians, rather than outright blasphemous.
Faithful Christians should and will be able to recognize the antichrist and the other members of the unholy trinity in the End Times. Although the final days haven't approached yet, we can prepare ourselves for when they do. Make sure to continuously be watchful and vigilant, for Satan prowls like a roaring lion. Those who do not spend time with the Lord or in the Word could fall prey to his schemes as we begin to reach the events in Revelation.
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Hope Bolinger is an editor at Salem, a multi-published novelist, and a graduate of Taylor University's professional writing program. More than 1,200 of her works have been featured in various publications ranging from Writer's Digest to Keys for Kids. She has worked for various publishing companies, magazines, newspapers, and literary agencies and has edited the work of authors such as Jerry B. Jenkins and Michelle Medlock Adams. Her modern-day Daniel trilogy is out with IlluminateYA. She is also the co-author of the Dear Hero duology, which was published by INtense Publications. And her inspirational adult romance Picture Imperfect releases in November of 2021. Find out more about her at her website.