Evidence: False Christs & False Prophets appear
Jesus predicted that prior to his return that many false Christs and false religions would emerge.
His disciples came to him privately and said, “Tell us, when will all this happen? What sign will signal your return and the end of the world?“ (Matthew 24:3) “Many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and will deceive many… For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform signs and miracles to deceive the elect–if that were possible.”(Mark 13:6, 21) “and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people.”(Matt 24:11)
In our lifetime, several people have emerged identifying themselves to the masses as God, Jesus, or a reincarnation of Jesus. While not always reported in the news for their claims, these leaders have often brought about the tragic and violent end of their followers (Waco, Jonestown, and Heavensgate).
There were 21 public religious figures in the 20th century that claimed to be Jesus (Source: Wikipedia).
Some of the more famous individuals to recently claim deity were David Koresh, Jim Jones, and Marshall Applewhite. Each of these men made headlines for bringing about the violent & tragic end to their followers.
- David Koresh, one of the more famous to claim he was God. Koresh was the leader of the “Branch Davidian” cult in Waco Texas who repeatedly claimed he was the reincarnation of Jesus. His religious sect stockpiled food & weapons. When ATF agents arrived at the compound, Koresh’s followers opened fire killing 4 and wounding 16 agents. (Source: Time “David Koresh - Cult of Death“)
- Following a 51-day siege, a gunfight & fire broke out at the religious compound killing several of the members including Koresh. Many members stated that Koresh refused to allow certain members to leave.
- Jim Jones claimed to be “the reincarnation of Jesus” or “Father Divine” (Cults: Faith, Healing and Coercion, Galanter)
- Thirty years ago, 909 Americans were led to their death by the Rev. Jim Jones in a mass murder-suicide pact in a South American jungle, shortly after Jones’ gunmen killed a visiting U.S. congressman and four others at a nearby airstrip. (Source: CNN)
Two of the more famous people claiming to be a re-incarnation of Jesus Christ today are:
Sung Myung Moon
- Famous Korean leader claiming to be God
- Leader of the “Unification church
Jose Luis de Jesus Miranda
- A Miami pastor that claims he is God. (Source: CNN)
Jesus also predicted that “false prophets” would lead many astray. A literal translation of this word in Greek refers to false religion.
- New Age teachings & philosophies have become prevalent throughout our society in the latter half of the 20th century
- Satanism & the Occult are growing (Source: London Telegraph)
“The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.” (1 Timothy 4:1)
Our society has witnessed a rapid rise of new age thinking, mysticism, cults, and various new forms of religion that have sprung up exponentially since the social revolution began in the 1960s.
- Hollywood movements such as Scientology and Kabbalah have been made known by famous movie stars and recording artists.
- Polygamist sects have made headlines for tax evasion and maintaining upwards of 75 wives (Source: NPR)
We don’t hear about “false Christs” as much in the headlines as we might about earthquakes, tsunamis, or war. Unless the followers of a false Christ meet a tragic end such as Waco, Jonestown, or Heavensgate, they are often overlooked. The evidence remains though that they do exist and that those making such claims have increased in number in the last 50 years. There has been a tremendous growth in cults, new-age philosophy, mysticism, and satanism in recent years. The Bible states that in the last days, many false prophets (Matt 24:24) and teachers (2 Timothy 4:3) would appear and lead many astray. Jesus stated that this would occur just prior to his coming and incidentally, much of this trend has occurred in conjunction with the other signs mentioned on this website.