172.MARK OF THE BEAST
According to the Scriptures, the "mark of the beast" is received on the right hand or forehead. With modern technology, it is very possible that this mark may be directly linked with a computer chip. But regardless if it is or isn't, everyone who is living immediately before the return of Christ will be forced to take this mark in order to buy or sell anything:
"He also forced everyone, small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on his right hand or on his forehead so that no one could buy or sell unless he had the mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of his name. This calls for wisdom. If anyone has insight, let him calculate the number of the beast, for it
is man's number. His number is 666" (Rev. 13:16-18).
But this mark, which will be universally issued around the entire world, MUST NOT be received under any circumstances, even by Christians! Scripture goes on to say:
"A third angel followed them and said in a loud voice: 'If ANYONE worships the beast and his image and receives his mark on the forehead or on the hand, he, too, will drink of the wine of God's fury, which has been poured full strength into the cup of his wrath. He will be tormented with burning sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment rises for ever and ever. There is no rest day or night for those who worship the beast and his image, or for anyone who receives the mark of his name. This calls for patient endurance on the part of THE SAINTS who obey God's commandments and remain faithful to Jesus' " (Rev. 14:9-12).
As the mark will definitely be issued one day, as Scripture declares, the eternal destiny for all who receive that mark will also be in accordance with Scripture! Do not be deceived about this. If you are a Christian, you MUST NOT take this mark or you, too, will miss the kingdom of God and suffer eternal torment over this single act of disobedience, according to Scripture! If the popular teaching of eternal security (also known as the perseverance of the saints) was true, Rev. 14:9-12 would be an impossibility! So don't be deceived by the teaching of eternal security. You must endure to the end to be saved (Matt. 10:22; Heb. 3:14; Rev. 2:10,11).
The people who make the eternal mistake of receiving the mark and worshiping the beast and/or his image will be deceived by accompanying miraculous signs and wonders:
"But the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who had performed the miraculous signs on his behalf. With these signs he had deluded those who had received the mark of the beast and worshiped his image. The two of them were thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur" (Rev. 19:20).
"And he performed great and miraculous signs, even causing fire to come down from heaven to earth in full view of men. Because of the signs he was given power to do on behalf of the first beast, he deceived the inhabitants of the earth. He ordered them to set up an image in honor of the beast who was wounded by the sword and yet lived. He was given power to give breath to the image of the first beast, so that it could speak and cause all who refused to worship the image to be killed" (Rev 13:13-15).
"The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeitmiracles, signs and wonders, and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness" (2 Thess. 2:9-12).
Those who refuse to receive the mark of the beast and worship his image are referred to in the following passage. These are the same ones who obey God's commandments and remain faithful to Jesus:
"I saw thrones on which were seated those who had been given authority to judge. And I saw the souls of those who had beenbeheaded because of their testimony for Jesus and because of the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or his image and had not received his mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years. (The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended.) This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy are those who have part in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with him for a thousand years" (Rev. 20:4-6).
Please notice, the "first resurrection" will not occur until the mark of the beast is made available! The first resurrection is for those who have done good and will rise to live, as opposed to those who have done evil and will rise to be condemned (Jn. 5:29). YOU WILL NOT ESCAPE A PERSONAL DECISION REGARDING THE MARK OF THE BEAST THROUGH A PRE-TRIBULATION RAPTURE. Regarding "that day" or "our being gathered to him" (2 Thess. 2:1), the Bible says:
"Don't let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction" (2 Thess. 2:3).
Those who remain faithful to the Lord Jesus will refuse this mark, but will be beheaded as a result. This same fate for the God fearing,who endure to the end, is also mentioned in the following passage with another possibility for "the saints":
"He was given power to make war against THE SAINTS and to conquer them. And he was given authority over every tribe, people, language and nation. All inhabitants of the earth will worship the beast -- all whose names have not been written in the book of life belonging to the Lamb that was slain from the creation of the world. He who has an ear, let him hear. If anyone is to go into captivity, into captivity he will go. If anyone is to be killed with the sword, with the sword he will be killed. This calls for patient endurance and faithfulness on the part of THE SAINTS" (Rev. 13:7-10).
Dear reader, if you die in the Lord as a consequence of refusing the mark of the beast, please realize that you will immediately be in the presence of the Lord in "Paradise" (Lk. 23:43). Do you know what heaven is like?
Regarding physical death for a Christian, Paul wrote:
"We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord" (2 Cor. 5:8).
"For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which isbetter by far" (Phil. 1:21,23).
REGARDLESS WHAT HAPPENS, DO NOT TAKE THE MARK! There will be many who will accept it at this time. Great pressure will be on you also to conform to their example. Miracles from satanic power will deceive many into taking the mark. YOU MUST REMAIN TRUE TO GOD, EVEN IF YOU GET BEHEADED OR GO INTO CAPTIVITY AS A CONSEQUENCE. YOUR ETERNAL DESTINY HANGS IN THE BALANCE with this single act, if we are the last generation. Pass this vital information on to other people with whom you are acquainted. If we are the last generation, this could be the most important message they will ever learn. It may make the difference in where they will spend all of eternity.
"They overcame him [the devil] by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death" (Rev. 12:11). "Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell" (Matt. 10:28).