"After this I kept looking in the night visions, and behold, a fourth beast, dreadful and terrifying and extremely strong; and it had large iron teeth. It devoured and crushed and trampled down the remainder with its feet; and it was different from all the beasts that were before it, and it had ten horns. While I was contemplating the horns, behold, another horn, a little one, came up among them, and three of the first horns were pulled out by the roots before it; and behold, this horn possessed eyes like the eyes of a man and a mouth uttering great boasts." (Daniel 7:7-8)
This "little horn" is none other than the one the Bible calls the "Antichrist" who many of believe will soon enter the world stage. Scripture tells us that he comes out of the revived Roman empire, the last world-wide empire. The decline of the Roman empire occurred over an estimated period of 320 years which many historians believe finally culminated around 476 A.D. when Romulas Augustus, the last Emperor of the Western Roman Empire was deposed by Odoacer, a Germanic chieftain.
The fact is that, although it declined, the Roman Empire never actually "fell" like all of the other world-wide empires that proceeded it. The Bible indicates that this old Roman Empire will someday be revived and will once again dominate the world politically, economically and militarily under the direction and control of the Antichrist. This revived kingdom will apparently begin as a ten nation confederacy (ten horns). The Antichrist will swiftly and systematically uproot and reconstruct this ten nation confederacy into his personal kingdom that will, for a short time, completely dominate the world.
The name "Antichrist" means one who is opposed to or is a substitute for Christ Jesus. Jesus Christ is, of course, our only Savior and the only rightful King of Kings and Lord of Lords. But the Antichrist will present himself as the savior and king of the world, and will even demand the world's worship. He will indeed have "amouth uttering great boasts". During his short reign on earth, the Antichrist will perform some very amazing, powerful and convincing works, seemingly saving the world's economy and bringing world peace and prosperity. Of course, he will eventually be revealed as only an evil, hypocritical counterfeit of the true Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
If, as many believe, the end of this age is near, then the Antichrist is alive somewhere on earth today. But neither he or anyone else on earth know his infamous destiny yet. He is described as a "little horn", probably an insignificant government official somewhere in Europe who will one day rapidly rise to his position of world dominance. He will undoubtedly be a charismatic personally, brilliant and a very talented man who will be possessed by Satan himself.
These are very exciting times for us Christians as we literally watch history unfold in our time and look forward to the rapture of the Church and the second coming of our Lord; "So you too, when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door." (Matthew 24:34). But even as we wait expectantly for our Lord, we need continue to trust and obey Him, doing those things He has commanded; "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." (Matthew 28:19-20) Maranatha!