Mark of the Beast: Part 1 - Preparation
Mark of the Beast Pt. I
Hello again friends. As suggested by the title, this Hub begins a study into the ‘Mark of the Beast.’ As many of you may already know, this ‘Mark of the Beast’ is terminology for a symbolic indication of a ‘Beast’ power which is prophesized in the Bible to persecute God’s people during the climax of earth’s history. Please pray for God’s guidance as we study into this urgent subject.
And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.
It is crucial to note how this passage links the ‘Mark of the Beast’ to worship of the ‘Beast.’ Also, we should note that there are three different characteristics to distinguish the Beast; there is the “mark” (of authority), the “name”, and the “number of his name.” According to this passage, we must have either the mark of the beast, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name, in order to be able to buy or sell. What should become clear is that the mark of the beast is not the same as the number of his name.
Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.
Although we can see that the number 666 is clearly associated with the beast power of Bible prophecy, the verses we looked at above, in context, should make it obvious that 666 is not the mark of the beast, but rather it is one of the clues God has given us to help identify this beast. Yes, I am referring to gematria, in which every letter of the alphabet has a corresponding number. Summing these numbers gives a numeric value to a word or name. Notice the text says to “count” the number of the beast.
A quick search online shows results of this 666 gematria as being the names of both famous and infamous world leaders throughout history, as well as popular names in the media today. What does this mean? Are the names listed in these results somehow linked to the Antichrist? What if the sum of your name, or someone you know, equals 666? Friends, we can be thankful that this is only one of the clues provided in the Bible in regards to the identity of the Beast power.
Before we continue, please consider this. Although it might be argued by some that 666 must be applied to one man's name, let us consider the following verse to show that 666 may apply to something else:
And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.
The same Greek word translated as “name” in Revelation 13:17-18 (onoma: G3686), is also used in the above verse, so clearly the word can also apply to a title, and not just one man's name. Remember, we are told that it takes a certain understanding and wisdom to discern just how this number is actually applied.
Friends, we want to avoid receiving the mark of the beast, and thereby avoid worshipping anything other than the one true God of the Bible. However, in order for us to recognize this ‘mark’, we must first identify the beast for which it signifies, for, as will be shown, this beast of Bible prophecy represents the Antichrist and this mark is the mark of his authority. One of the Bible’s strongest prohibitions is against this mark:
And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:
To begin this study, we will to the book of Daniel. Why would we focus on a Book of the Bible from the Old Testament when we are studying a prophecy from the last Book of the New Testament? It is because of the structure of Greek and Hebrew literature as well as the way the Bible was put together. You see, the Book of Revelation actually introduces very little that is new, but rather expands on ideas or symbols that have already been used elsewhere in the Bible. You must use the rest of the Bible to decipher much of Revelation, in this case the Book of Daniel.
That’s because the beast of Revelation 13 is parallel to the “little-horn” power of Daniel 7. I may write a Hub explaining how that works, but many scholars agree and there are many studies online showing this as well. In the meantime, please carefully read Revelation 13:1-2, 3-8, and 17-18; and then compare to Daniel 7:2-8, 21 and 24-25.
After you have read the above verses, consider the following:
- The beasts in both Revelation 13 and Daniel 7 arise out of the sea (Rev. 13:1, cf. Dan. 7:3)
- Both of these texts refer to a leopard, a bear and a lion, and while Daniel describes the fourth beast as “dreadful and terrible,” Revelation, expanding on this, tells us it’s “the dragon” (Rev. 13:2, cf. Dan. 7:4-7)
- In Revelation, the focus is on the beast with “seven heads”, in Daniel, the four beasts have a total of 7 heads (Rev. 13:1 cf. Dan. 7:4-7)
- Both beasts have ten horns (Rev. 13:1 cf. Dan. 7:7)
When we compare the beast and the little-horn, we see that they both:
- Rule for the same period of time (Rev. 13:5, cf. Dan. 7:75)
- Have a notable leader (Rev. 13:18, cf. Dan. 7:8)
- Do the same things (Rev. 13:5-6, cf. Dan. 7:8, 20, 25; Rev. 13:2, cf. Dan. 7:21)
It is amazing how clear things become when we begin to understand basic principles of Bible prophecy. Please carefully review Revelation chapter 13 and Daniel chapter 7 before continuing to Part 2 of this study.
When you feel comfortable with the information provided in this study, Click Here to continue.
Thank-you for reading.
Many thanks to Amazing Facts Ministry and Bible Universe for the incredible supply of resources, and Donald Earnest Mansell.