I came across an excellent article that teaches the end times from the perspective of the ancient Church. Along with the book Ultimate Things, the Orthodox position is clear.
...some Orthodox elders have strongly advised against even looking at the face of the Antichrist, lest you get seduced by his charm.
“The Jews will rejoice and give honor to the reign of the antichrist more than anyone else. And he, under pretense of preference, and being industrious with them, will designate for them all a place and the temple.” [St. Ephraim]
This mark—whatever it proves to be—we Orthodox Christians view as a serious denial of Christ. We must not accept it. Accepting it will be a rejection of one’s Holy Chrismation and a rejection of God.
The False Prophet will try to coerce all humanity to accept the Antichrist’s “chrismation”—the mark of the Beast—by arranging life so that in the new global government’s one-world economy, no one will be able to buy or sell without that mark. Those who do not take the mark face economic disaster, famine and starvation.
The difficulties of that final era of tribulation will not be limited to the persecution of Christians, but will come “upon every soul,” as St. Ephraim notes. Indeed, all men—all flesh—will suffer greatly at that time as the very earth, sea and sun will rebel against the Devil and his false “Christ”.
People will be hungry, even those who took the mark of the beast in order to gain access to food in stores.
Today’s sermon is about the Antichrist, as I continue my sermon series on the Orthodox Christian perspective on the awaited Second Coming of our Lord and God and Savior Jesus Christ. The purpose of this sermon is to provide a Patristic understanding of the Scriptures on this timely and important...