Do you have the Mark of the Beast? Does anyone??
No, you don't and they don't!! And here's why:



First, the events related to the "mark of the beast" in the book of Revelation took place 2,000 years ago during the lifetime of the disciples. John (the author of Revelation) clearly tells his first century readers about "things which must shortly come to pass" (Rev. 1:1) and says "the time is at hand" (Rev. 1:3) for these events. You either have to distort the clear meaning of words to make these verses refer to some time future to us or you have to believe that John was mistaken or lying about what he said. (And if you want to distort what John wrote by quoting 2 Peter 3:8,9: "one day is with the Lord as a thousand years,..." visit the page titled "Fuzzy Math" for a Biblical refutation of this ungrammatical, unreasonable and immoral method of interpreting Holy Scripture.)

Second, even if it did somehow refer to something in our future, it is not Biblical to make "the mark" refer to one of a number of fanciful novelties such as bar codes, implants or tattoos. The following is from "Days of Vengeance" by David Chilton and presents a BIBLICAL interpretation of the mark. (Sorry it's not as "exciting" as the "Left Behind" fiction...but it IS Biblical.)

"In Rev. 7, 9, 14 and 22, St. John sees God’s people sealed on their foreheads with His name; and in Rev. 13 he writes of the worshipers of the Beast, who are designated on their right hands and foreheads with his mark. Many fanciful interpretations have been made regarding these marks — ranging from tattoos and amusement-park validations to credit cards and Social Security numbers – and all without the slightest notice of the clear Biblical allusions.

But what would the first readers of these passages have thought? The symbols would have made them think immediately of several Biblical references: the “mark” of sweat on Adam’s forehead, signifying God’s Curse on his disobedience (Gen. 3 :19); the forehead of the High Priest, marked with gold letters proclaiming that he was now HOLY TO THE LORD (Ex. 28:36); Deuteronomy 6:6-8 and Ezekiel 9:4-6, in which the servants of God are “marked” on the hand and forehead with the law of God, and thus receive blessing and protection in His name. The followers of the Beast, on the other hand, receive his mark of ownership: submission to ungodly, statist, antichristian law. The mark in Revelation is not meant to be taken literally. It is an allusion to an Old Testament symbol that spoke of a man’s total obedience to God, and it stands as a warning that our god – whether it be the true God or the self-deified State – demands complete obedience to his lordship.

The meaning of a symbol is not whatever we choose to make it; nor did St. John create the images of the Book of Revelation out of his own imagination. He presents Christ to his readers as a Lion and a Lamb, not because he thinks those are pretty pictures, but because of the connotations of lions and lambs already established in the Bible.

The Book of Revelation thus tells us from the outset that its standard of interpretation is the Bible itself. The book is crammed with allusions to the Old Testament. Merrill Tenney says: “It is filled with references to events and characters of the Old Testament, and a great deal of its phraseology is taken directly from the Old Testament books. Oddly enough, there is not one direct citation in Revelation from the Old Testament with a statement that it is quoted from a given passage; but a count of the significant allusions which are traceable both by verbal resemblance and by contextual connection to the Hebrew canon number three hundred and forty-eight. Of these approximately ninety-five are repeated, so that the actual number of different Old Testament passages that are mentioned are nearly two hundred and fifty, or an average of more than ten for each chapter in Revelation."

Tenney’s count of 348 clear Old Testament references breaks down as follows: 57 from the Pentateuch, 235 from the Prophets, and 56 more from the historical and poetical books. Tenney admits that his figures are conservative; one might even say hidebound. Nevertheless, even using his figures, it is obvious that the Book of Revelation depends on the Old Testament much more than does any other New Testament book.

This fact alone should warn us that we cannot begin to fathom its meaning apart from a solid grasp of the Bible as a whole. The early churches had such an understanding. The Gospel had been preached first to the Jews and Gentile proselytes; often churches had been formed by worshipers at synagogues, and this was true even of the churches of Asia Minor (Acts 2:9; 13:14; 14:1; 16:4; 17:1-4, 10-12, 17; 18:4, 8, 19, 24-28; 19:1-10, 17). Moreover, it is clear from Galatians 2:9 that the Apostle John’s ministry was to Jews in particular. Therefore, the first readers of the Revelation were steeped in the Old Testament to a degree that most of us today are not.

The symbolism of the Revelation is saturated with Biblical allusions which were commonly understood by the early Church. Even in those rare congregations that did not have some Hebrew members, the Scriptures used in teaching and worship were primarily from the Old Testament. The early Christians possessed the authoritative and infallible key to the meaning of St. John’s prophecies. Our modern failure to appreciate this crucial fact is the main cause of our inability to understand what he was talking about."


 
 

Click on a topic for some BIBLICAL viewpoints! You must have courage to believe the truth! Submit a question for a preterist answer.
Biblical Superiority
of Preterism
Everything Jesus Said About the Rapture
5 Errors of Premillennialists
Antichrist
Revealed!!
Definitions and Advocates
What Difference Does It Make?

HOT!! Jesus' Timeline of "Last Days"
Bibliography
Books you otta read!

HOT!! A Night With the Family --A "must" read!!
Daniel's 70 Weeks
Future or Fulfilled?
Matthew 24
Future or Fulfilled?
Scriptures give
actual timing of
Second Coming!!

Mark of the Beast
Do You Have It?

When does "soon" = "later"?
When does "quickly" = "slowly"?
When does "at hand" = "future"?
2 Peter 3:8,9
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