Because it is said that "he went forth conquering, and to conquer," most students of the Word, if not all, believe the bow mentioned is a weapon. I would like to offer another interpretation. I believe it is the same kind of bow Moses wrote of in Genesis 9:8-17. That bow has always been understood to be a rainbow; a sign from heaven that God had given His word. It is a sign of peace, and God created it to remove fear. About four thousand years later, God would give His Word to offer peace between fallen man and Himself (Jn. 1:1, 14; 3:16). The antichrist conquers by making false peace treaties (Dan. 8:25; 9:27; 11:21, 24; 1 Thes. 5:3).
The antichrist is described in some interesting ways in Daniel 8:23-25, which says,
"And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up. And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people. And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand."
"Understanding dark sentences" could mean the things of the occult, such as spells, incantations, mantras, or curses. "Not by his own power" but acting in the power of Satan (2 Thes. 2:9; Rev. 16:13-14). "He shall cause craft to prosper" sounds like someone who miraculously solves the economic crisis by eliminating unemployment. "By peace shall destroy many" was addressed above. "He shall be broken without hand" is clearly the fulfillment of Daniel 2:34, 44-45; Rev. 19:15).
Notice that the men riding the four horses are called "beasts." "The Beast" is the most oft used name for the antichrist in Revelation. The name appears at least once in twenty-five verses throughout the book. The first is found in Revelation 11:7, which says he "ascendeth out of the bottomless pit." He is described in Revelation 13:2 as empowered by Satan (Rev. 12:9), and being "like unto a leopard" (winged and extremely fast - Dan. 7:6). In verse 13:3, he is the ten-headed beast (Dan. 7:24; Rev. 17:12) having a mortal head wound from which he recovered. Apparently they knew it was Satan that had "healed" him for verse 13:4 says the world worshiped the dragon.
To be continued, Lord willing.