A Jewish and First-Century Context
I hesitate to even write on the Mark of the Beast with all of the carrying on about the COVID-19 vaccine. Yet, I feel that I must do so now as there is so much out there that is simply error, lack of understanding, ignorance, or just plain untruth. We need to take a look at the context of the book of Revelation and particularly chapter thirteen.
The Book of Revelation was written by the Apostle John on the island of Patmos, where he was living in exile. Jesus appeared to Him and told him to write what he saw. Jesus tells us plainly in the opening verses that the Book of Revelation that it is a revelation or revealing of Him. Yes, there may be strange creatures, a lamb with seven heads: slain, Beasts, plagues, bowls of judgment, horses released, a city compared to a bride, and many unusual things, but this book is all about Jesus.
With that in mind, remember it was written near the end of the first century where the Roman empire was already persecuting and killing Christians in large numbers. It helps to understand the context of something and why and when it was written. Since Revelation is prophetic, it is often misunderstood. You have to put it with the other one hundred and forty or so chapters about the End-times to get an understanding.
Marks Mean Property
Marking the body is an ancient technique used to identify personal property, such as a slave or a brand on cattle. In addition, the Amalekites used to mark their bodies to show their dedication to their gods. Women who were involved in prostitution or who were sex slaves also had marks to identify them as such. Marking the body, whether through piercing, tattooing, or scarring the flesh were used in every society throughout history.
The Native Americans marked their bodies for war, religious ceremonies, and other special needs. Likewise, African slaves were marked in various manners, often to identify who they belonged to. Hitler had numbers marked on the bodies of Jewish people during WWII. Today we find gangs have a unique mark, often a tattoo that means they belong to a particular gang.
Every one of these serves to demonstrate that the recipient of the mark was someone’s property or a devotee to a religious cult, tribe, gang, or other similar groups. Regardless of the purpose or the recipient, there was always someone on the other end of the mark, whether enemies, a slave master, a pimp, gang leader, cult or other religious leaders or even an organization. Even in modern warfare, armed service members often get a tattoo as an identifying mark, sort of a rite of passage.
Binding The Law On Their Bodies
Deuteronomy 6:4-8 “Hear O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all of your heart and with all of your soul and with all of your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.”
You may recognize verse four as the Shema that every Hebrew child can recite at an early age signaling their recognition of the one true God, YHVH. Then we find the greatest commandment, loving God with all of our being. The Jews were told repeatedly to teach their children the statutes, laws, ordinances, and commands of God. Moses went further to say to them to bind them to their bodies but notice where.
The first place was between the eyes, near the seat of thought, memory, and where learning is located, the head. Between the eyes indicates that they were to meditate on it day and night. The second place was the ‘hand.’ The original Hebrew just said hand. We use the hands to work and perform duties such as writing down God’s Holy Word.
Today you can find religious Jews wearing a tallit and the phylacteries as they are known on their forehead and left hand. No one knows why the left hand is used, but that has been the case for three thousand years. The wearing of the phylacteries or symbols of the law is an outward symbol of their devotion to YHVH, Adonai, or God and His laws, statutes, and ordinances. They are making a statement saying that they belong to God and He is near through His Word.
The Sealed of God
Revelation chapter seven lists those sealed in their foreheads as 144,000 from each of the twelve tribes of Israel. In chapter nine, we see the angels being told to only harm those not sealed with God’s seal in their forehead. We see this introduced at the beginning of chapter seven.
We see in the latter half of chapter seven those who came off victorious from the Great Tribulation from every tribe standing around the throne and worshipping the Lamb of God. So now we have those with God’s seal in their foreheads and those tribulation martyred saints worshipping around the throne of God. The Bible also speaks about another seal, and that is the Holy Spirit. When we first come to believe, we are sealed with the Holy Spirit. (Ephesians 1:13 ESV)
Other verses that speak of the Holy Spirit as a seal for believers include 2 Corinthians 1:21-22, Ephesians 4:30, 2 Corinthians 5:5, and Revelation 22:4, which says they will see His face and His name will be on their foreheads.
Worship of The AntiChrist: His Mark His Property
I will not belabor this work by reciting Revelation chapter thirteen. You can read it, and you need to after this. I just want to focus on a few key ingredients. First, the Beast has a mark that he requires everyone to have to buy and other essential goods and services. Without it, you go hungry. Second, this Beast is part of the AntiChrist unholy trinity with the false prophet as the third member.
To tie it all together, we saw that the Jews had a ‘mark’ or bound the law to the left hand and the forehead, the saints of God are sealed by the Holy Spirit, and the Jewish witnesses are sealed in their forehead. This sealing indicates we belong to the one true God and that we have pledged to worship Him alone and no other ‘god,’ not even a Beast with a number of a man.
Thus the AntiChrist will seek to lure people of every status into making an eternal pact with a bowl of lentils like Esau and Jacob. But this is not about a blessing, but one’s eternal soul. Therefore, by taking this mark, you cannot be sealed by God, and you have decided who you want to serve.
One Final Key From Daniel’s Friends
There have been many ‘Anti-Christ’ figures throughout history, and each one demanded worship of all of those with whom they held influence. The book of Daniel highlights one of the famous empire builders who ruled over many nations. His name was Nebuchadnezzar, and he built a statue demanding that when the people heard the music, they should bow to the statue and worship.
Daniel’s three friends Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, as they were called in Hebrew, refused to bow to the statue when the music played. You know the story of how they were thrown in a fiery furnace, and Jesus appeared and walked among them. They came out unscathed by the fire and smoke because they were obedient and served God first.
The lesson is that the AntiChrist, Beast, and false prophet will demand worship of every tribe, tongue, nation, people, and language on the earth. They will require them to be marked, so they know who is devoted to them. Those who refuse to face a death sentence where they will either starve, suffer, be tormented, or ultimately martyred.
I think that makes it pretty clear. You will be sealed and marked by God or the Antichrist ruler and his Babylonian system. Where do you stand? Will you bow and worship the statue? Will you sell out to Satan and his kingdom? That is what it is all about, not a vaccine, or chip. These are just means to an end. A dry run to see what they can get away with.
The kingdoms of this world will fall, but before they do they will make one last effort to rule and take as many to hell with them! Who’s mark or seal do you have?