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Originally published in "The Lord's Coming Herald & Wesleyan Bible Prophecy Advocate," July 2009

Have You Already Taken The Mark Of The Beast?

Of course not, are you crazy? In fact, I hope to never have to take it, because I'm going up in the Rapture before our society ever comes to that!

Wait a minute! Let's sort through a few things here a bit, if we may.

First, the Bible does not teach the modern dispensational premillennial pre-tribulation rapture theory, so we might be well-served to think again about that aspect of our gospel paradigm.

Second, what exactly, is "the mark of the beast," anyway?

In order to understand the mark of the beast, we obviously have to identify who, or what, the "beast" is first, right? This awareness brings us to the need for an accurate interpretation of Revelation chapter thirteen. (Please see previous recent editions of this paper and other relevant material posted online for a discussion of the meaning of Revelation chapter thirteen.)

The "beast' here is the Roman empire, and not one single individual called "the Antichrist," a term, by the way, that is never once mentioned in the Book of Revelation itself. The "beast" is not a man, it is an empire. To take the mark of the beast simply means to be conformed to the image of the pagan Roman empire.

Christianity is a theocratic religion in which the Lamb is now reigning King of kings and Lord of lords. True Christians have placed themselves under the Lordship of Jesus Christ and have the "mark" of His Spirit upon them (Eph. 1:13; II Tim. 2:19; Rev. 7:4ff.; 14:1ff.).

The number six stands for man, and is one short of the number of perfection, seven, which stands for God. The number six used three times, as in 666, stands for commitment to complete humanism. And that's what pagan empire is--a full commitment to man-centered humanism.

So what really dominates your life, human empire concerns, or the Kingdom of God?

Related Article Links

Steps Toward Understanding The Mark Of The Beast?
Revelation Chapter 13 Explained