Q. Please explain the relationship between the Rapture and the appearance of the Anti-Christ. I have understood that the Church and the Restrainer must be gone before AC can “appear.” If the End is as near as we believe, AC must be alive in the world now, but we are still here. Therefore, the man is not the AC yet. If AC cannot be revealed until the Restrainer is gone, that seems to imply that the Church will never see the man in his role of AntiChrist. He may be around, stirring in the pot for months or years before he is revealed as the AC, and he becomes the AC only after the Rapture.
A. There really isn’t any relationship between the Church and the anti-Christ. Yes, he’s alive today but we can’t point him out. I think he’ll go public after Ezekiel 38 in fulfillment of Rev. 6:2, but even then the world won’t point to him and say, “There he is.” That won’t happen until 3 1/2 years later when he stands in the Temple and says, “I’m God” (2 Thes. 2:4) and only Tribulation believers will know who he really is.