Saturday, February 18, 2012

Beware the Mark of the Beast: What Is It?

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.
Revelation 13:16-17

What is it?  A comment to a friend brought a new teaching about the mark to light last evening, so I thought I would address it.  Like many things pertaining to the last days, it seems that the enemy is working diligently to confuse and distort the truth.  Whether it is the rapture, the 2nd coming of Yeshua, the mark of the beast, or a whole host of other eschatological ideas, many are teaching information that deviates from the word.  Why?  My guess is that the enemy is sending disinformation to hide the true meanings in order to deceive the masses.

The word translated "mark" in the text above is only found once in the Greek New Testament.  It is the word charagma.  By definition, it is something that is physical; however, it is also evidence of a spiritual decision.  Blue Letter Bible outlines the meaning as such:

1)  a stamp, an imprinted mark a) of the mark stamped on the forehead or the right hand as the badge of the followers of the Antichrist b) the mark branded upon horses

2)  2) thing carved, sculpture, graven work, a) of idolatrous images. 
It   It is apparent that these definitions portray and clearly imply a physical, visible, tangible, and discernible mark of some sort that will be found on, in, or both on and in the body of those following after rebellion.

There seems to be a host of sites and teachers who are claiming that the mark is just thought.  They propagate that the mark is simply an act of rebellion, disobedience to God, the acceptance of deception, or the act of rejecting Christ while choosing the Antichrist.  To support their teachings, they are trying to take numerous verses from the Old Testament and link them to this particular verse in Revelation.  One such verse is Deuteronomy 6:8 which states, "And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes." Most of these claim that the Jewish people simply accepted the LORD and then they were spiritually marked by the LORD as God's children.  While that is true (God has a spiritual mark, the blood of Jesus on the heart of His children), they still have a problem with the very word "sign" that they are using to support their theory.   

The word that is translated as "sign" is the Hebrew word 'owth.  Like the Greek word charagma, this word denotes something physical, something that can be seen. Note its definition also from Blue Letter Bible:  

1) a sign, signal  a) a distinguishing mark b) banner  c) remembrance d) miraculous sign e) omen f) warning
2) token, ensign, standard, miracle, proof

Now, how did the people of Torah interpret this and keep this law?  By wearing phylacteries, portions of scripture placed in boxes or strips of leather or paper which were bound to the right hand and/or forehead.  This is a practice that is still followed today!  They have made a choice to follow GOD wholeheartedly, and the phylacteries are a visible and material means of showing their devotion.  Even Jesus would have worn these and He rebuked those who wore excessively large ones to gain attention as hypocrites in Matthew 23:5.

Modern Jewish Man Wearing Phylacteries on the Right Hand and Forehead

In its context, the mark of the beast is used as a means of total control.  Without it, you cannot buy nor sell.  This requires some sort of item to be in place that will assure the local grocer that you have sworn allegiance to the Antichrist and that you are eligible to make purchases.  Now use common sense!  How can the butcher, baker, or candlestick maker see rebellion, lies, disobedience, or deception.  If this interpretation that the mark is simply a concept is true then Christians should not be able to go to market today as they have sworn allegiance to Christ and rejected the Antichrist spirit that is already in the world.  All ages would have had the mark present, and it would not be specific to the last 3.5 Jewish lunar years of the Tribulation.  It just doesn't make good sense now does it?

This is why many believe that the mark is not only the rejection of God, but that there is also a physical component attached to it which one can detect.  It is for this reason that many consider the mark to be some sort of technological invention such as an insertable microchip or a computer readable tattoo.  It fits with the text in that we can clearly see that this technology is around us today.  Furthermore, it is specific to this generation and not something that could be found in the entire church age as the above false notion would imply.  

The fact that we do see this sort of ability to control all commerce through some sort of technology is another clear warning that the End of this Age is upon us.  We will explore more about the mark another day, but I want to address you.  If you have not yet prayed to Christ and asked to be covered by His blood in the full pardon of your sin, do it today!  Truly, Jesus Christ is Soon2Come!  

Mark of the Beast Technology?


  1. ...good read, Pastor Notter.

  2. It is actually worn on the left hand (according to what I've read and even according to the picture (our right, his left).
    Thank you for this! God bless