Antichristianism a term that conveniently designates, in a collective manner, the various forms of hostility which Christianity has met with at different times. It is equivalent to "the spirit of Antichrist" (τὸ τοῦ Α᾿ντιχρίστου) in the apostolic age (1Jo 4:3). — SEE ANTICHRIST. Indeed it exhibited itself against the true religion in the persecutions which the Jews underwent from Antiochus Epiphanes (q.v.), and may be traced in the history of the protosaint Abel (q.v.). It was this that Enoch (q.v.) and Noah denounced in their preaching (Jude 1:14; 2Pe 2:5-7); that "vexed the righteous soul" of Lot; and that, in fine, has broken forth in all ages as the expression of the world's malignity against the good (comp. Joh 15:18-21; 2Ti 3:12). Since the days of persecution it has been confined chiefly to intellectual modes of opposition, and has received the names of Infidelity, Deism, Rationalism, etc. SEE APOLOGETICS. The Scriptures, however, appear to point to a time when the Antichristian elements shall again array themselves in forms of palpable violence. SEE GOG. For "the carnal mind" (τὸ φρόνημα τῆς σαρκός, native will) is no less than ever opposed (ἔχθρα) to the divine economy and purposes (Ro 8:7). It is the same "mystery of iniquity" already foreseen by Paul as then "working" to successive developments (2Th 2:7); "that ἀνομία in the hearts and lives, in the speeches and writiigs of men, which only awaits the removal of the hindering power to issue in that concentrated manifestation of ὁ ἄνομος, which shall usher in the times of the end" (Alford, Gr. Test. prol. to vol. 3, p. 68). A stream of Antichristian sentiment and conduct pervades the whole history of the world. The power of evil which we see at work calls forth Antichristian formations, now in one shape, now in another; and so, according to the prophets, it will be until the final triumph of the kingdom of Christ (Olshausen, Commentary, 5,321 sq., Am. ed.). SEE MYSTERY OF INIQUITY; SEE INFIDELITY.

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