A March 1 WorldNetDaily article by Leo Hohmann forwards speculation that the new prime minister of Greece, Alexios Tsipras, is the Antichrist. This is dutifully followed by "prophecy experts" shooting down the idea, as well as such speculation about anyone.
Hohmann kicks things off with WND fave Joel Richardson:
Joel Richardson, author of the best-seller “The Islamic Antichrist” as well as “Mideast Beast” and “When a Jew Rules the World,” is as interested as anyone in the rise of the world figure the Bible calls the antichrist. He’s written two books that deal explicitly with that topic. But, he says, it can become a distraction.
He points to all the misses of the past few decades in which well-known global figures were seen as the embodiment of Satan on earth – Ayatollah Khomeini, President Clinton, Javier Solana and nearly every pope.
President Obama is in his final years in office, but rest assured, Richardson said, this article will be followed by dozens of comments declaring that it would be remiss for any good antichrist speculator to ignore the fact that Obama is indeed the lawless one, the Son of perdition.
You know who helped fuel speculation that Obama is the Antichrist? Joel Richardson.
In 2009, Richardson wrote a WND column headlined "What Obama and the Antichrist have in common." Despite writing that he wanted to "make it very clear that in no way do I believe that President Obama is the Antichrist," Richardson made sure to draw parallels between the two: "Today, throughout the Islamic world, the masses are yearning for and longing for a populist messiah figure known as the Mahdi who, according to their very own prophecies, will employ precisely the same methods as Obama."
Hohmann goes on to quote another WND fave, Carl Gallups:
Stalin, Mussolini, Hitler, various popes, various U.S. presidents, and other powerful world leaders have made the list. And, it is no secret that many Christians claim to see “antichrist spirit” characteristics in any number of current world leaders. Again, their batting average has been abysmal and if these prophecy gurus were baseball players they would not even make it in the minor leagues.
“There can be little doubt that the ‘spirit of antichrist’ continues to grow stronger with the passing years and the continual degradation of the world’s attitude toward the Word of God and Jesus Christ,” Gallups said. “The advice I give to Christians who inquire upon this subject is: carefully discern the times, rightly divide the Word of truth, stay cognizant of the growing spirit of deception and deceit so that we might speak biblical truth and relevance to the decaying culture around us, and keep the main thing – the main thing. Winning souls, equipping the saints, and effectively advancing the Kingdom of Jesus Christ in hearts and lives.”
And who is one of those minor-league prophecy gurus whose batting average has been abysmal in identifying a certain U.S. president with Antichrist tendencies? Carl Gallups.
Under the pseudonym PPSimmons, Gallups made a YouTube video in 2009 -- promoted at WND, of course -- claiming that “the Greek word for ‘lightning’ is ‘astrape’, and the Hebrew equivalent is ‘Baraq,’” and that "If spoken by a Jewish rabbi today, influenced by the poetry of Isaiah, he would say these words in Hebrew ... 'I saw Satan as Baraq Ubamah.'"
As blogger Richard Bartholomew pointed out at the time, Gallups misinterprets the biblical text he's quoting from and mistranslates the Greek into Hebrew.
Curiously, Hohmann never mentioned Richardson's or Gallups' previous adventures in linking Obama to the Antichrist -- or any of the other WND writers who have made similar claims. Just a couple weeks ago, WND's Joe Kovacs presented the claim that "the night Obama was first elected president in November 2008, the three-digit winning lottery number in Illinois, the state in which Obama resided at the time he was running, was 666" as evidence Obama is the Antichrist.
C'mon, WND, don't walk back your Obama derangement now -- own it! That's the only reason people read WND these days, after all!