June 03 2022
Today, Friday June 03
The Mark of the Beast
“He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.”
We need to remember that the chapters in Revelation 10-14, are describing events that take place in the middle of the Tribulation. Here in chapter 13, we have already talked about the “beast that comes up out of the sea” (13:1), who is also called the Antichrist. And another “beast that comes up out the earth”, who is also called the “false prophet.” (13:11)
The false prophet's mission will be to use all the means available to him from the Antichrist to cause the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast. He will lead the worldwide cult of Antichrist worship. The first way he does this is to make an image of the first beast and place it in the temple in Jerusalem and then cause it to come to life and speak. This of course captures the attention of the world, and the false prophet makes them worship the Antichrist.
To be sure that everyone complies with his demand, he also does something else. Not content to control people through religious deceit, the false prophet will institute strong economic measures as well. Everybody (except believers; Rev. 20:4) will be required to receive a special mark in order to buy or sell; but the only way to get that mark is to submit to "the beast" and worship him.
During the time that the Apostle John was writing this book, the world was ruled by Roman Emperors, also called Caesar. Caesar claimed to be a god and demanded that everyone worship him. Everyone was required to say, “Caesar is Lord” to prove their allegiance or worship of the Roman Emperor. Most people simply complied with the demand because they already worship dozens of other gods. But true Christians would not say this because they worshiped only one God and instead, they would say that “Jesus is Lord.” If they continued to do this, they would be put to death or exiled like John was.
This special mark is the name or number of "the beast"—the mystical 666. In the ancient world, the letters of the alphabet were used for numbers, both in Greek and Hebrew; and Bible students have been attempting for years to unravel the mystery of this name and number. If you work at it hard enough, almost any name will fit!
Since man was created on the sixth day, six is the number of man. Creation was made for man and likewise has the number six stamped on it: twenty-four hours to a day (4 x 6), twelve months to a year (2 x 6). Seven is the number of perfection and fullness, but six is the "human number," just short of perfection.
Despite all man's imaginative calculations, we must confess that no one knows the meaning of this number and name. No doubt believers on earth at that time will understand it clearly. The "satanic trinity" cannot claim the number seven; it must settle for 666.
This much is sure: in recent years, we have seen a worldwide increase in the use of numbers for identification. In the United States, a person's Social Security number is indispensable. In fact, numbers are more important to computers than names! Today with the use of credit cards, that can even now be inserted as a computer chip into a person’s forehand, and even more recently, the talk of everyone having a Covid Vaccine Passport, it is easy to see how all this is an advance warning of what will happen on earth when "the beast" is in control.
Even today, an antichristian system pervades our world, and true believers must not be a part of it (1 John 2:15-17). We must shun false worship (1 Cor. 10:14-22), that we may be found faithful to the Lord in these last days! (2 Tim. 3)