“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)
When the apostle John wrote Revelation around AD 95, he probably had no idea how all the things he wrote about would happen. He just wrote as the Holy Spirit directed him, and he knew these things would happen. So it was with Old Testament prophets who wrote of Jesus’ future death and resurrection:
“Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.” (1 Peter 1:10-11)
The “he” in our opening verse is the Antichrist, also known as “the beast.” During what the Bible calls the Tribulation, he’ll force people under threat of death to worship him and to take his mark. Of course, doing so will mean eternal damnation: “…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…And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever” (Revelation 14:9, 10, 11). Then during the Tribulation, people will have to choose either to receive Jesus as Saviour, refuse the Antichrist’s mark, and be killed or take the mark and be condemned to hell for ever.
Before the Tribulation there will be an event often called the Rapture, when all who have received Jesus as Saviour will be taken away to be with Him: “…We [born-again people] shall not all sleep [die], but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye” (1 Corinthians 15:51-52).
Don’t believe it? Here’s food for thought: nowadays you can put a credit card into a scanner so it reads a chip. Couldn’t a chip also be put into your hand or forehead? Here’s more: Jesus said, “But as the days of Noe [Noah] were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (Matthew 24:37). In Noah’s time, “The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence” (Genesis 6:11). The Lord also said, “Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot” (Luke 17:28). In Lot’s time, “…the men of Sodom were wicked and sinners before the LORD exceedingly” (Genesis 13:13). Same-sex intimacy was epidemic in Lot’s time. Don’t the “days of Noah and Lot” sound like today, with out-of-control crime and violence, as well as governments, businesses, the media, and even churches trying to be “gay-friendly?”
You may think, “Well, if all this happens and I miss the Rapture, I’ll accept Jesus and be killed during the Tribulation.” Please think again. 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12 talks of those who “received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” If you’ve heard the gospel and how to receive Jesus as Saviour but won’t do it now, God will send a delusion in the Tribulation that you’ll believe and you won’t receive Him then, either.
It’s tough enough being a cop nowadays when the anti-police sentiment is so toxic. You definitely don’t want to be a cop during the Tribulation.
Please click “Helpful Links” on the top menu and then “How Do I Go to Heaven?” on the dropdown menu to see how to receive Jesus as Saviour.
Brian Miller 6/20/2017
Cleveland Baptist Church | 4431 Tiedeman Road, Brooklyn, Ohio 44144 | 216.671.2822