2 Thessalonians 2:9-10
The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. ESV
It’s startling that power, signs and wonders were features of Christ’s ministry during His First Coming and will also characterise the coming of the Antichrist. But that’s as far as any similarities between these two goes.
The first difference is that the false messiah’s activity on earth will be satanically inspired, whereas Jesus’ earthly ministry was Holy Spirit led. Another difference is that the lawless one’s work will be wicked, unlike Jesus’ that was absolutely righteous. Thirdly, the Antichrist’s actions will be typically deceptive, but Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth and the Life.
Beloved, can you see why harbouring any form of sin, lies and trickery in our lives is literally playing into the enemy’s hands? Many good believers today are clueless about the dangers of toying with sin–no matter how “harmless” it may seem. They don’t know that the presence of sin in our hearts attracts the kingdom of darkness like a magnet does iron.
Rejecting Gospel truth invariably exposes us to satanic deception. The antidote to deception, so says our text, is to love the truth. That’s different from merely tolerating God’s word. Rather, it’s about esteeming the words of His mouth more than our necessary food (Job 23:12). Indeed it’s about delighting in God’s law and His will after the inward man (Ps 1:2; 40:8; Rom 7:22).