Encyclopedia of Psychology and Religion

2014 Edition
| Editors: David A. Leeming


  • Bobbi Dykema Katsanis
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-6086-2_36


Antichrist, at the most basic level of understanding, is simply any opponent of Christ or, more commonly, the ultimate final opponent of Christ. This figure embodies all that is antithetical to Christ, Christ’s teachings, and Christ’s salvific action in the world as Christians understand these concepts. While based in a few rather obscure passages of Christian scripture, the concept of Antichrist and accompanying narratives and descriptions about Antichrist’s identifying characteristics, deeds, and context have developed in a long and rich tradition from the earliest days of Christianity.

Antichrist is mentioned as such only once each in two of the three epistles of John in the Christian New Testament. However, Christian theologians from very early on began associating Antichrist with the Beast described in the scenes of final judgment in the Apocalypse of John (also known as the Book of Revelation), as well as with apocalyptic imagery in the Hebrew Scriptures book of the...

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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate Theological UnionBerkeleyUSA