Sun, Aug 27, 2000

The Mark of the Beast: Revelation 13:16-18

Ministry of Pastor Joe Guglielmo teachings through the Bible, verse by verse for a better understanding of Gods Word.
Text Print read

THE MARK OF THE BEAST

REVELATION 13:16-18

Please turn in your Bibles to Revelation chapter 13, as we continue our study through this fascinating and timely book. And as you are turning there, listen to this story from the San Jose Mercury, dated August 8, 1975. This story speaks of a proposal by Dr. Henry Alderman of the European Common Market Confederacy in Brussels.

"The massive plan involves a digital number system for every human being on earth. A computer would assign each citizen of the world a number that would be invisibly laser tattooed on the forehead or the back of the hand. It would provide a walking credit card system. The number would show up on infra-red scanners and be placed at all check-out counters and places of business. By using this three, six digital unit the entire world can be assigned a working number. An international mark that would do away with all currency or coin instead of credit notes exchanged through a world fixing system. Nobody could buy or sell without this digital marking system on them. One man can have at his finger tips the number of any man on earth. When one of the market leaders was asked what would happen if anyone objected to this system and refused to co-operate, he replied rather pointedly, ‘We would have to use force to make him conform to the requirements.’"

Now 25 years have past since those words were spoken, and, as you will see this morning, we are quickly moving towards a cash-less society and the mark of the beast, which will be the focus of our study this morning in Revelation chapter 13.

So far in our study in Revelation chapter 13 we have been introduced to two different beasts; the Antichrist and the false prophet. And we have seen that the Antichrist will bring intense persecution upon all those who refuse to worship him. Also, there is a so-called "spiritual awakening" as the false prophet leads the world in the worship of this beast. And thus, we see 100% political authority exercised by this coming world dictator- the Antichrist. And we also see 100% ecclesiastical authority exercised by the false prophet or the religious leader of that time.

But the Book of Revelation speaks of more than just a political and religious control over the inhabitants of the world. This world dictator will also exercise 100% economic authority. He will control all that is bought and sold! With that in mind lets read through verses 16-18 of Revelation chapter 13, and then we will go back and expound on these verses and see what the Lord has for us this morning.

REVELATION 13

VERSE 16

Please notice that this mark that is given to the inhabitants of the earth is far reaching. Every race, color, creed, social-economic background will be able to receive this mark, none are excluded. The "small and great" speak of their social status. Those who are world leaders and those who are not will receive this mark. The "rich and the poor" speak of their economic status. That is to say that it does not matter how much money you have or don’t have. All will be able to receive this mark. The "free and the slave" speak of their working class. That is those that are under the bondage of slavery will be able to receive this mark just as easily as the free man!

Now this mark, CHARAGMA in the Greek, speaks of a brand or seal that will be placed upon the persons right hand or forehead. In Deuteronomy chapter 6, God speaks of a mark, in a sense, that the children of Israel were to apply to their lives. We read beginning in verse 4, "Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one! You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to yourchildren, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way,when you lie down, and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, andthey shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of yourhouse and on your gates." Deuteronomy 6:4-9.

God was not telling them to bind the Word of God in a box and strap it to their head or hands. But that is the way they have taken it to mean and we still see many Orthodox Jews today with these boxes called PHYLACTERIES. What God was telling them was that in all they do, He was to be part of their lives, the center of their lives. From their thoughts to their actions God was to be the focus and then that is what would flow from their lives. The same is true for us, from the rising of the sun till its going down the Lord is to be in our thoughts and actions!

But the mark which is taken here in Revelation chapter 13 does not reflect your love for the Lord, but your love for the Antichrist, who is a representative of Satan. Now some today are fearful that they may accidently take this mark and be condemned to hell. Let me say this, it won’t be an accident if you receive this mark. You will know exactly what you are doing. In fact, in the Greek it speaks of each individual giving themselves this mark, it is done willingly.

But for those who do receive this mark, listen to this warning that John gives to us in Revelation 14:9-11. We read "Then a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, ‘If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. And the smoke of theirtorment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship thebeast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name."

Now the purpose of this mark is told to us in verse 17. It is very clear the control that this man will have on those who are upon the earth, total domination of their lives!

VERSE 17

What John is speaking of is a cash-less society where nothing will be bought or sold without a number. Everyone will have their own personal ID number by which they will be able to make their transactions. Now when John wrote this they were some 1850 years maybe even 1900 years before man would have the technology to do these things. Today we have the technology!

In the world we are living in there are problems with money being stolen from people, stores, there is money laundering schemes that cost millions of dollars for some nations, millions more dollars are lost through stolen credit cards. Children are being kidnaped. People become lost in remote areas. Soldiers are in trouble. People are having life-threatening illnesses and unable to contact emergency help. There is the misuse of firearms. And I think you get the idea, there is a problem today that many are trying to solve, and they feel they may have the solution. What is that solution?

The solution is a microchip implanted under the skin. Several years ago the Washington Times pointed out "The only reason the computer chip capable of such information is on a card is it may not be publicly acceptable at present to implant the chip under the skin, at least in the United States." Folks, that is quickly changing and people are accepting these things much more readily than years ago, and we now have the technology to do the things that John spoke of in Revelation chapter 13. In fact, as I started to study where the technology is today, it blew me away! And I think you too will be amazed at how far we have come and what we are able to do.

On May 13, 1997 a patent was granted for a "personal tracking and recovery system," and on December 10, 1999 Applied Digital Solutions acquired the patent rights to this technology and the name of this digital transceiver is "Digital Angel." Now what are some of the applications of this device? Listen carefully?

1. IT CAN BE USED TO MONITOR PATIENTS VITAL SIGNS AND ANALYZE THEM.

2. IT CAN BE IMPLANTED IN CATTLE AND OTHER LIVE STOCK TO TRACK THE HEALTH AND LOCATION OF THESE ANIMALS.

3. IT CAN BE USED TO TRACK PEOPLE THAT HAVE BEEN KIDNAPED.

4. IT CAN BE USED TO TRACK SOLDIERS AND MONITOR THEIR VITAL SIGNS AND IT CAN GIVE CRUCIAL INFORMATION TO THE MILITARY LEADERS.

5. IT CAN BE USED TO MONITOR PEOPLE WHO ARE ON PAROL, UNDER HOUSE ARREST, AND-SO-ON.

6. IT CAN BE USED IN THE ACCESSING OF FIREARMS IN THAT ONLY THE OWNER OF THE GUN WOULD BE ABLE TO FIRE THE WEAPON, IT WOULDN’T FIRE IF YOU DIDN’T HAVE THE RIGHT IDENTIFICATION.

7. AND IT IS ONLY A SHORT STEP UNTIL THIS IS USED FOR THE BUYING AND SELLING OF THINGS, LIKE YOU WOULD USE A CREDIT CARD.

Interestingly enough, "When implanted in the body, the device is powered electromagnetically through the movement of muscles, and it can be either activated by the wearer or by the monitoring facility." I think we call that "BIG BROTHER!"

Maybe some of you have seen that commercial where this young man walks into the store with this trench coat on, and he just looks like a trouble maker. And all of sudden he starts grabbing things from the shelves and placing them inside his coat. Like I said, a trouble maker. And people are watching him, and as he begins to leave the store he catches the eye of the security guard, and you think he has had it now. And as he is leaving the store, he grabs a newspaper and just walks out. He didn’t pay for anything!

Well, all of a sudden the security guard is on the move, and he begins to go after this young man. And as the security guard leaves the store he grabs a piece of paper, and as he reaches this young man he says something to the effect, "Sir, you forgot your receipt!" You see, he was either carrying a chip or a card that automatically debited his account and as he walked out the door of the store all the items he placed in his coat were charged to him! We have come a long way since John wrote these words!

Now Applied Digital Systems, ADS, has received complaints from some Christians who are concerned and believe this implant could be the fulfillment of Biblical prophecy, that it is the mark of the beast. Now I am not saying it is the mark of the beast but I do believe it is a foreshadow of what is to come!

Dr. Peter Zhou, chief scientist for the development of the implant and president of Digital Angel.Net,inc, which is a subsidiary of ADS, said this in regards to those who are objecting to this implant:

"I am a Christian, but I don’t think [that argument] makes sense. The purpose of the device is to save your life and improve the quality of life. There’s no connection to the Bible. There are different interpretations of the Bible. My interpretation is, anything to improve the quality of life is from God. The Bible says, ‘I am the God of living people.’ We not only live, we live well." He continues on to say in regards to opposition of this device, "A few years ago there may have been resistance, but not anymore...People are getting used to having implants. New century, new trend." By the end of this year they will have a prototype of the dime-sized implant!

It gets even more interesting. Professor Kevin Warwick, the Director of Cybernetics at the University of Reading in the United Kingdom, became the first human to host a microchip back on August 24, 1998. The article states "And so, for a little better than a week, doors that normally require smart cards swung open for the professor. A system of electronic nodes tracked his movements throughout the building. Lights blinked on when he entered the room. ‘Hello, professor Warwick,’ his PC announced when Warwick crossed the threshold of his office, before casually mentioning how many E-mail messages he has received. It is also reported that Warwick used the device to run a bath and chill his wine."

Very shortly the professor will conduct a follow-up experiment with a new implant that will send signals back and forth between his nervous system and a computer. He said "When I waggle my left index finger, it will send a corresponding signal via the implant to the computer, where it will be recorded and stored. Next, we can transmit this signal to the implant, hoping to generate an action similar to the original. I will consider the test a fantastic success if we can record a movement, then reproduce it when we send the signals back to the arm...Will we evolve into a cyborg community? Linking people via chip implants to super intelligent machines seems a natural progression - creating, in effect, superhuman’s."

He goes on to say "And I’m amazed by results from a team at Emory University in Atlanta, which to great international interest has implanted a transmitting device into the brain of a stroke patient. After the motor neurons were linked to silicon, the patient was able to move a cursor on a computer monitor just by thinking about it. That means thought signals were directly transmitted to a computer and used to operate it, albeit in a rudimentary way. The Emory team is looking to gradually extend the range of controls carried out."

Also, "Linking up this way could allow for computer intelligence to be hooked more directly into the brain, allowing humans immediate access to the Internet, enabling phenomenal math capabilities and computer memory...I can envision a future when we send signals so that we don’t have to speak...In the future, we won’t need to code thoughts into language - we will uniformly send symbols and ideas and concepts without speaking...Linking people via chip implants directly to those machines seems a natural progression, a potential way of harnessing machine intelligence by, essentially, creating superhuman’s. Otherwise, we’re doomed to a future in which intelligent machines rule and humans become second class citizens."

Listen to this article on artificial intelligence from Wired News, September 1, 2000. It says "...McKinstry, a computer scientist and an artificial intelligence expert, has embarked on a groundbreaking artificial intelligence project that aims to leverage the mind power of millions of Web surfers to teach a computer to approximate human thought. The computer is called GAC, which stands for General Artificial Consciousness. McKinstry’s aim is no less than to create an artificially conscious being - a computer that can independently think human thoughts. GAC (pronounced ‘jack’), went online a month ago at McKinstry’s Mindpixel Digital Mind Modeling Project website and is just an infant. But the computer will learn to act human in the same manner that a human baby learns, McKinstry said, by examining the world around it. GAC’s world is the World Wide Web. The more people who talk to the baby at his website, the faster GAC will learn about the world, and the sooner he’ll be able to achieve consciousness..." I don’t know about you, but that just blows me away when I think of what he is doing and then read in Revelation chapter 13 how the image of the beast comes to life - the technology is here!

And if that doesn’t give you willies then this article from the Washington Post, August 31, 2000 will. It is on self replicating robots! It says:

"Scientists in the burgeoning field of artificial life have reached a major milestone, creating a computerized system that automatically creates, evolves, improves and finally builds a variety of simple mobile creatures without any significant human intervention. The ‘robotic life forms’ that sprang into being at Brandeis University are a few inches long, comprise a dozen or two-dozen plastic parts and have rudimentary nervous systems made of wire. They do only one trick - crudely shoving themselves, inchworm-like, along a horizontal surface using miniature motors. By the standards of even the cheapest automated toys, that may not seem like much. But the creatures described in today’s issue of the journal Nature were not constructed, planned, designed or even imagined by people. Every step - except for a couple of trivial hardware connections -was done by computer. Their advent, Brandeis researchers Jordan B. Pollack and Hod Lipson say, marks ‘the first time robots have been robotically designed and robotically fabricated.’ In effect, their existence tests the ability of man-made systems to mimic one of the most fundamental processes in nature: evolution through classic Darwinian, survival-of-the-fittest selection..."

I am fascinated by this even though I think their conclusion is wrong, this is not proof of evolution. Think about it. Evolution says that life came from non-life, a chance happening without a designer and without a builder. Now if the people at Brandeis University want to say that one day they walked into their lab and this robot was built by random chance happenings and it began to produce other robots, why are we funding them, let chance happening do its work. But the reality is they spent much money, much intelligence as they designed this and they built it. But again, the technology is amazing!

The technology for the mark of the beast is already present in the world today and it is only getting more sophisticated. The world is just waiting for this world leader to come on the scene, solving the worlds economic, political, and ecological problems and he will then institute this mark and without it you will not be able to buy or sell. The time is moving quickly by folks!

VERSE 18

There are volumes of books and articles written about this man and specifically his number, 666. Some have said that is was Kennedy, Kissinger, Ronald Wilson Regan, Nero, Caligula, Mussolini, Hitler, Stalin and the list can go on and on. And that list will continue to grow and change but for me, God says "Here is wisdom." Knowledge is information and wisdom is application. Today people have lots of information but when it comes to application, they fall far short. I think people spend to much time trying to figure out who this man is. Frankly, I don’t care about this man, because I don’t believe we will be here when he is revealed, so why go looking for him? For me, I want to know Jesus more deeply and so I will look to Him and keep my eyes focused upward for His return! And I don’t think we can know this person’s name. You see, unless you have the name in Hebrew or Greek, you are not going to be able to figure it out!

I think what the Lord does want us to know is that this beast is an imperfect man - 666! Numbers do play a role in the Bible. The number 12 speaks of human government. The number 13 speaks of Satan. The number 8 speaks of new beginnings, Jesus. The number 7 speaks of completeness or perfection. And of course the number 6 speaks of man, incomplete!

And I think the triple six speaks of this, that no matter how many 6's are placed after this man, he still falls short of 7, and perfection! He is just a man! Think of it this way, this evil trinity, 666, doesn’t compare to the Holy Trinity, 777, it will always fall short and will fail!

This numbering system that John is speaking of is called GAMATRIA, which is the study of the numerical value of words. Our English does not use this system but Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic use this numbering system with its letters. For example, in the Greek we have Alpha, Beta, Gamma, and Delta, or 1, 2, 3, 4. Every Greek letter has a numeric equivalent so that you can add up the total or numeric value of a word.

But for us to try and calculate the number of this man, I believe, is fruitless. The key is God’s wisdom verses man’s. You will know this man by his fruit, but again he is an imperfect man, 666! And don’t waste your time looking for him, for Paul said in II Thessalonians 2:7,

"For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do sountil He is taken out of the way." You see, the restrainer is the Holy Spirit working in the life of a believer. Once we have been raptured unto the Lord that restraining force is removed and then the Antichrist will be revealed. For me, I am looking for Jesus Christ!

Man will never bring peace in this land nor will he be able to rebel against God forever. There is coming a day when those who are marked by God will live and reign with Him upon the earth and then true peace and righteousness will fill the land. And those that receive the mark of the beast will be identifying themselves with the Antichrist and they are marked for judgment. The choice is yours whose mark you want to receive.

I want to leave you with these words from Paul in Romans chapter 13, words for you to meditate upon. He said beginning in verse 11, "And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts." Romans 13:11-14.

Today is the day of salvation, don’t put it off! Get right with God through Jesus Christ, ask Him to be your Lord and Savior, and you will receive His mark in your life. For those of you who know the Lord and your walk is shaky, WAKE-UP! Fill yourself with the Lord and you will not have any room for the flesh to manifest itself in your life!

Don’t let the things you have heard this morning scare you, for if you know the Lord they should encourage you, they do me, for the Lord has told us these things will come to pass. And they should encourage us to forge ahead in the work that is before us, don’t give up and keep your eyes upon Jesus, look up for your redemption is drawing near!

Audio download
Powered by: Preachitsuite