I thought I'd revive an old topic that we've not discussed in quite some time. I couldn't find the original Thread I started months ago, that contained my 666 post. Brother Richard, if you locate that Thread, please feel free to shut this one down, and move the discussion to that Thread.
On with the discussion!
666? Mark of the Beast? Chip implants? Gamatria? Which is it? Who of us within our day has understanding? Who of us attended many seminars, taken classes, or researched the web so much, and so long, that we've discovered the meaning of the Beast's Mark? The answer should be no one. Well if no one, then how could anyone understand what is meant by the Mark of the Beast? Better yet, why shouldn't we just listen to God's word for what it says, and await the day for when the Anti-Christ will come, and establish his mandated mark? In other words, why not take it literally?
Why not???? The answer is because taking the mark literal is NOT scriptural.
I was reading an article written by Ken Davies, and I find a very interesting article discussing the Mark. Here's the link:
Let's first read the passage in question:
Taking this literal is not wise, for a few strong reasons. For one, those of you who might feel compelled to take the mark literal, may as well take the Beast literal. If John says that this mark is literal (such as a chip implant), then the Beast must be literal as well. Let us then look for the Clash of the Titan where the Cragon rises from the sea, and we'll need to find the head of Medusa so as to get the seven headed beast to stare into the ugliness of Medusa, thereby causing the Beast to turn into a huge pillar of stone. This is called fantasy folks.Revelation 13:
16 He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, 17 and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. 18 Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.
The primary reason I believe the Mark is a figurative expression is perhaps the strongest support for my position. The Bible doesn't teach us that this mark is literal. How so? If you don't understand Jewish literature, you will never understand their traditional figures. Let us use an example of the mark being applied to someone's forehead.
Friends? Was the Ezekiel shown a vision of a man holding an ink pen literally marking everyone who was to be spared? Of course not! Yet that is exactly how modern day Futurist's treat Revelation. There were two marks in John's Revelation of Jesus. One was the mark, or seal of those who were being spared from the destruction and Tribulation. The other mark was of the Beast; that is, those who would be spared temporarily by the Beast's Kingdom, but later destroyed by the "coming" of Christ.Ezekiel 9:3-6
3 Now the glory of the God of Israel had gone up from the cherub, where it had been, to the threshold of the temple. And He called to the man clothed with linen, who had the writer’s inkhorn at his side; 4 and the LORD said to him, “Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and cry over all the abominations that are done within it.” 5 To the others He said in my hearing, “Go after him through the city and kill; do not let your eye spare, nor have any pity. 6 Utterly slay old and young men, maidens and little children and women; but do not come near anyone on whom is the mark; and begin at My sanctuary.” So they began with the elders who were before the temple.......
A simple comparison shows that the mark being applied to the forehead shows that their conscious (or mind) was set on the things of God. In short, these are the faithful. The anti-type, or the opposite, is the mark of the beast, whether on the forehead (consciously), or on the right hand (greeting hand, or working hand).
What is the message? You are either on God's side, or the Beasts (Satan). Now think of the message, and let us determine if such an interpretation fits in the first century? The Roman Empire persecuted Saints by the thousands in the first three centuries. In fact, at what time in Roman History did they not persecute Christians? [Note: I'm not referring to the Spanish Inquisition by the RCC; I'm referring to the Roman Empire as it was in the first century]
The last important fact is how Ezekiel's vision parallels with John's Revelation. Both events spoke of the destruction of the temple and city of Jerusalem. Ezekiel was shown that those who mourned and lamented for the corruption of the temple were spared. But those who took pride in its condition were marked for destruction. The same for John's Revelation. Those who were "marked" for salvation (deliverance) from the coming destruction were given time to leave. Those who took pride in the temple and its condition were marked for judgment of God's wrath [first century Jews who rejected Christ and loved the temple markets for profit]. Did all of this happen?
YOU BET IT DID! In 70AD, just as Christ explained to the Apostles.
Do you believe now? Great! If not, then what's holding you back?