Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour (1 John 2:18).
Does John think all Christians are ‘little children’? Well, if he did, he wouldn’t be far off. I’m convinced most of the church has never grown up, but in this case, I believe John is simply using the most inclusive title in order to speak a severe warning to everyone.
“The last hour.” To equate an hour to a millennium makes it easier to talk about. The world, when John wrote this letter, had already lived four millennium, or four hours. Knowing there were only two more hours to live, John could easily refer to the time as the last hour. In comparison to eternity, two thousand years is no more than two hours.
“Many antichrists have come.” From what I’ve read of Herod the Great, he could certainly be classified as an antichrist. Anyone who exalts himself to be higher than heaven, higher than God, is an antichrist. I can think of quite a few that have ruled in my lifetime, such as Hitler, to name one. Anyone who makes decisions about life and death that are not ordained by the Commandment of God is taking on godlike attributes that he or she is not qualified to assume and is therefore operating under the spirit of antichrist.
John is warning us that because of the spirit of antichrist, things are going to get darker and darker, but that the light will get brighter and brighter. Make sure you are able to discern which is which and follow the True Light of Jesus Christ.