666 and the Mark of the Beast - Page four
After Constantine, the Roman Catholic Church continued to enforce the keeping of Sunday in Europe for over 1,000 years. Sunday laws were also enforced in England for centuries. Amazingly, this practice was continued in colonial America. I have in my library a book, Dateline Sunday, USA-The Story of Three and a Half Centuries of Sunday-law Battles in America, written by Attorney Warren L. Johns (1967). This book reveals that in spite of the desire of the early American Puritans to get away from everything Catholic, they still maintained the keeping of Sunday and even the enforcement of Sunday laws. In the 1600s, if you lived in Massachusetts, Virginia, or Connecticut, you were required by law to attend church on Sunday. Disobedience was punished by heavy fines, whipping, confinement in a cage, and in some cases, even by death. Thus, colonial Protestant America still followed the example of Constantine and the Catholic Church in the uniting of church and state, and in the enforcement of Sunday laws.
The American Revolution resulted in complete separation from England and in the forming of a new nation. The American Constitution and the Bill of Rights fully established the doctrine of religious freedom. The First Amendment now denies the right of government to enforce religion. The Statue of Liberty at the entrance to New York harbor remains a monument against Rome and against the history of religious persecution in Europe. In the United States, the state is separate from the church, and the church is separate from the state. Both have their place, and both are to remain free. Yet history reveals that Protestant America has never completely cut loose from the City of Seven Hills, from the Vatican itself.
On May 21, 1888, a New Hampshire Christian senator introduced the following bill into the fiftieth Congress, “Be it enacted by the Senate and the House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, that no person, or corporation, or the agent, servant, or the employee of any person or corporation, shall perform or authorize to be performed any secular work . . . on the first day of the week, commonly known as the Lord’s day” (The National Sunday Law, Arguments of Alonzo T. Jones before the United States Senate Committee on Education and Labor at Washington, D.C., December 13, 1888. 1889, p. v.). The purpose of this bill was to produce enforced Sunday keeping nationwide, and this proposed legislation had the support of Christian churches across America who were seeking to inject more religion into an increasingly secular society. Yet the Blair Sunday bill was finally ruled unconstitutional, and it died in committee.
That was over a hundred years ago. Yet the problem of immorality remains; in fact, it is getting worse. Every Christian knows society is in moral trouble, and we struggle for solutions. What does the future hold? Bible prophecy predicts that what happened in Europe leading to the forming of the beast will eventually happen in America leading to the image of the beast. In the fourth century, Rome was disintegrating. Constantine decided that the solution to the problem was to unite the government of Caesar with the Roman Catholic Church and to enforce the keeping of Sunday. Something similar will happen again. During a future crisis, in an hour of desperation, Protestant America will finally conclude that the only solution to the national emergency will be to unite the church with the federal government and to enforce the keeping of Sunday.
Pastor John Hagee, a much-respected Christian television evangelist, recently said, “I believe that in the next two years America will either return to God—or we will be a nation that goes beyond the brink and forever turns away from God. We are in that decision-making process now. It’s time we rise up and Take America Back!” (John Hagee Ministries, Ministry Resource Catalog. Fall issue, 1999-2000, back cover). Pastor Hagee is correct when he says America needs to come back to God, yet (and I trust he would agree) this must be done through the love of Jesus Christ without the use of force.
On May 31, 1998, Pope John Paul II issued a lengthy pastoral letter, Dies Domini (The Day of the Lord), which contained a passionate appeal for the revival of Sunday observance. The pope said the prevailing neglect of Sunday reflects a spiritual crisis inside the Catholic Church and within Christianity in general. Notice his words: “The Lord’s Day has structured the history of the Church through two thousand years: how could we think that it will not continue to shape the future?” Shockingly, the pope then urged world governments to enforce Sunday laws! “In the particular circumstances of our own time, Christians will naturally strive to ensure that civil legislation respects their duty to keep Sunday holy.” Such statements are right in line with this official Vatican position: “Christians should seek recognition of Sundays and the Church’s holy days as legal holidays” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, p. 528. 1994, italics supplied).
This view is shared by Pat Robertson, the founder of the Christian Coalition. In his best-selling book, The New World Order, Pat Robertson (like Pastor Hagee) correctly emphasizes the need for America to come back to God. His book envisions a time when this will occur. But he also writes: “The next obligation that a citizen of God’s world order owes is to himself. ‘Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy,’ is a command for the personal benefit of each citizen. . . . Only when people are permitted to rest from their labors, to meditate on God, to consider His way, to dream of a better world can there be progress and genuine human betterment. . . . Laws in America that mandated a day of rest from incessant commerce have been nullified as a violation of the separation of church and state” (Pat Robertson, The New World Order, p. 236. 1991).
Do you realize what you just read? Pat Robertson is envisioning an America that has returned to God. As part of this new world order, he also sees an America that is keeping the Sabbath, yet by the Sabbath, he really means Sunday. He then looks back to the days of colonial America when Sunday was enforced by law. He wants to see this again. He says what is stopping Sunday laws from being enforced is the separation of church and state, which, he has concluded, is really a doctrine of the liberal left. This is a mistake. The founding fathers separated government and religion as a reaction to the Church of Rome and in favour of inalienable rights. As we have already seen, the Catholic Church is against the separation of church and state and is in favour of Sunday laws. When Protestants attack the separation of church and state and at the same time seek for Sunday laws, “They know not what they do.” They are really lining up with the Roman Catholic Church and are preparing the way for the image of the beast and for the enforcement of his mark.
In the blazing light of Bible prophecy, these developments are more chilling than the scariest horror movie. I am not questioning anyone’s sincerity or deciding people’s destinies, yet the truth must be spoken. Truth Left Behind may never become as “wildly popular” as Left Behind, and it probably won’t receive a host of positive reviews from Christian leaders nationwide. Nor will its contents be viewed as altogether politically correct. But, like Martin Luther, I have my orders, and they come from above. How many people accepted the preaching of Noah? How many boarded the ark? I am writing this book because the Spirit of God is compelling me and because Christians must be warned. Lucifer himself is hiding underneath many of Christianity’s most popular trends. In fact, the enemy has recently spoke directly from heaven in support of Sunday observance. Have you heard of the apparitions of Mary? They are definitely increasing. We should have no doubt they really come from Satan. Notice these words from a Catholic author who has compiled an entire book about these appearances: “One evening our Lady appeared to a local farmer, Michael O’Donnel. She told him, ‘Preserve Sunday for prayer’ ” (The Thunder of Justice, by Ted and Maureen Flynn, MaxKol Communications, Inc., 1993, p. 30).
“Those who fail to learn the lessons of history are condemned to repeat its mistakes.” It already happened in Europe. The Roman Empire was falling apart, so Constantine decided to unite the government of Caesar with the Roman Catholic Church and to enforce the keeping of Sunday. This helped form the beast, and it will happen again in America. Our country is now sinking in the quicksand of sin, and immorality is raging out of control. Like the approaching footsteps of a midnight thief, the final crisis is coming. In a soon-coming dramatic hour of desperation, prophecy predicts America will reject over two hundred years of freedom. Sincere, and yet misguided Christians will take the reins of government. The appropriate separation of government and religion will disappear as Protestant America forms an image of the Roman Catholic Church. In a final attempt to bring America back to God, Sunday observance will once again be enforced by law. Yet this time, unlike the past, the enforcement will be universal. Protestants, Catholics, and even the apparitions of Mary, will all be united in this. The reasons will sound good; the movement will look Christian, and it will seem like our only hope. Yet deep in the midst of these turbulent waters will be Satan himself. He will have finally pulled off his ultimate masterpiece of delusion. He will have led Christians, in the name of the Lamb, to enforce the mark of the beast. Those who refuse to cooperate will not be able to buy or sell. And this is not an issue that some fictitious Tribulation Force will have to deal with. No. It will apply to you and me.
“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). Notice carefully that people will get either the mark, the name, or the number. This doesn’t mean the government will someday say, “Take your pick. Do you want the mark, the name, or the number?”—as is taught in The Mark—The Beast Rules The World (p. 86). Not a chance. We are dealing here with deep spiritual issues. Sunday is the “mark” of Rome’s authority. And just like “the name” of God refers to His character (Exodus 34:5-7), even so does “the name of the beast” refer to his character. The beast “thinks” it’s OK to change God’s law (Daniel 7:25). Those who think like this during the closing seconds of time will be sharing in the character of the beast. They will have his name on their foreheads, instead of the name of the heavenly Father (Revelation 14:1).
What about that mysterious “number of his name . . . 666” (Revelation 13:17, 18)? Consider this: What day was man created? On the sixth day. What day did God rest? On the seventh day (Genesis 1:26; 2:1-3). What number is God’s number all throughout Revelation? Seven! The book of Revelation talks about seven churches (1:20), seven lampstands (1:20), seven stars (1:20), seven seals (5:1), seven trumpets (8:2), and finally seven last plagues (15:1), which will be emptied on those who get the number 666! Revelation says that 666 is man’s number (Revelation 13:18), representing man trying to take the place of God. Seven is God’s number, representing complete submission to Jesus Christ, our Creator. In fact, Jesus is represented in Revelation as a Lamb with “seven horns and seven eyes” (5:6), therefore the number seven is also Jesus Christ’s special number. Those who keep the Sabbath reveal to the whole universe that they have entirely surrendered pride and self to the love of Jesus Christ, the Maker of all life, and to the full power of His Cross. By God’s grace, they overcome where Lucifer failed. This is the core issue.
When the Mark of the Beast is finally enforced by law around the world, the Good Shepherd will call His sheep. During that fateful crisis, there will be sincere Catholics and Protestants everywhere who have never understood the real issues. The Spirit of the Almighty will talk to their hearts. The three angels’ messages will be heard from the pulpit, in print, on the radio, on television, on the World Wide Web, and via satellite. People will have a chance to learn what is truth. Jesus Christ will be lifted up, His cross will be seen, and actual cause of His death will be more deeply understood by Christians. Why did Jesus die? The Bible says, “Christ died for our sins” (1 Corinthians 15:3). What is sin? “Sin is the transgression of the law” (1 John 3:4). Simply put the pieces together. Jesus Christ died because human beings have broken the Ten Commandments, including the forgotten one, which says, “Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exodus 20:8). Therefore our Jesus Christ, our Creator, also died because we broke His Sabbath!
During the crisis surrounding the Mark of the Beast, it will be understood that Jesus is the Saviour of the world and the Maker of all life. The Sabbath will be presented as a special day, which uniquely reveals Jesus Christ and His love for His own lost world. He is the Lord of the Sabbath (Matthew 12:8). People will then be brought face to face with the core issue that will ultimately decide their destiny. Will they worship Jesus Christ, the Creator, and keep the commandments of God? Or will they worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark? Humanity will have reached its final crossroads. Heaven’s clock will have struck the midnight moment. The last hour of decision will have come. During those closing seconds, the seventh-day Sabbath will represent allegiance to Jesus Christ, the Maker of all life, while Sunday will represent allegiance to Rome.
Jesus said, “If you love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15). The heart of the issue is love for Jesus Christ. Out of sincere appreciation for His grace and for the magnitude of His sacrifice for the sins of the whole world, Christ’s true followers will fully take their stand on the Lord’s side, no matter what the cost. The three angels’ messages are clear: Those who accept the gospel, embrace the Lamb, worship the Creator, and keep the commandments, will not receive the Mark of the Beast. This is what the Bible says! The third angel describes God’s final apocalyptic people in this way: “Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus” (Revelation 14:12).
During planet Earth’s last crisis, when the Mark of the Beast is globally enforced by law, after a person truly sees the core issue and then chooses to believe in Rome’s Sunday instead of the Bible Sabbath of Jesus Christ—then and only then, will God Almighty look into the inner recesses of his or her mind, and consider that person to have the mark in the forehead. Those who don’t believe in Sunday keeping, yet who go along with it because of intense social and economic pressure to conform, will receive the mark in their right hand. Those who reject the use of force, who follow the Lamb, keeping the Sabbath no matter what the cost, will be revealing their supreme loyalty to the great Creator of heaven and earth. They have the name of God in their foreheads.
After everyone has made his final choice, the hinges of heaven’s door will close forever. Jesus Christ will then make this final, tremendous announcement: “He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still. And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give to every man according as his work shall be” (Revelation 22:11, 12). A mysterious voice will thunder from the heavenly temple, commanding the seven angels: “Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth. And the first went, and poured out his vial upon the earth; and there fell a noisome and grievous sore upon the men which had the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image” (Revelation 16:1, 2). These seven last plagues will totally desolate planet Earth. But as the Lord protected the Israelites in Egypt during the falling of the ten plagues (Exodus 8:22, 23; 9:6, 26; 10:21-23), even so will he fully protect His trusting and obedient children who have His holy name in their foreheads.
“He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee. Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked. Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation; There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling” (Psalm 91:4-10).
At the conclusion of the seven last plagues, at the end of “the time of trouble such as never was,” God’s loyal people shall look up with wonder and see the coming of the King. “Then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other” (Matthew 24:30, 31). Contrary to the fictitious account of Left Behind, this is when the Rapture takes place!
Jesus Christ, the Babe of Bethlehem, the carpenter’s Son, the Good Shepherd, the Lamb of God, the King of kings, the Lord of the Sabbath, and the Maker of all life, the One who loves us and died for us, will soon return to take His children home. Oh friend, will we be “caught up” on that great day? Will we follow the Bible or tradition? True Protestantism or Jesuit futurism? The Creator or the beast? Will we be marked in our minds or will we have the name of God in our foreheads? The choice is up to us. It is up to you. “If any man have an ear, let him hear” (Revelation 13:9).
Please select what is the mark of the beast to discover the real origins of that mysterious number 666 or see mark of the beast for more information with enlightening comparison tables and additional information on this topic. See also who is the Antichrist.
Watch excellent Prophecy Seminars online
If you have a reasonably fast internet connection and would like to watch an online Prophecy Seminar that reveals who the little horn of Daniel 7 and the Beast of Revelation 13 is that changed the Sabbath to Sunday, you will find Revelation Reveals the Antichrist very enlightening. You may want to start about 17.5 minutes in to bypass singing items etc. You can also watch Histories Greatest Hoax on the truth about the Sabbath and ideally should be watched first. There is also an episode covering 666 and the mark of the beast. To watch more from this Prophecy Seminar you will find the prophecy code menu here. Be prepared to discover many mind blowing, lost Bible truths.