Mark of the Beast

Q. Where Are the Scriptures About the Mark of the Beast?

A. “Verses 9-12.  The third of the three final messages follows as a direct result of the first two and present the full and final revelation of Jesus Christ, His perfect justice and mercy.  When this message has polarized humanity, opportunity for salvation will close, the plagues of God’s wrath will fall (Revelation 16), and Jesus will then come again to take His people back with Him to heaven.

The third angel presents a startling message, one designed to arouse men to the decisive issues at stake in the final conflict between Christ and Satan.  It presents the most fearful warning ever sounded before mankind.  The imagery it uses is based on Revelation 13.  Whoever worships the beast (the papal system) and his image (the end-time union of church and state in America) and receives the beast’s mark (the sign of his ecclesiastical authority – Sunday) while understandingly rejecting the Sabbath (the seal of God’s authority) must ‘drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture.’

So important is this warning that nearly the whole next section of the Book of Revelation is devoted to explaining it.  According to Revelation 15:1, God will send His wrath upon those who support the beast.  This will be in the form of seven great devastating plagues that will come unmixed with mercy, for those who reject the three angels’ messages will clearly align themselves against Jesus Christ, so that He will no longer be able to cover them with His mercy.

The third angel ends his message with the words:  ‘Here is the patience of the saints:  here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.”

In these few words the third angel summarized the everlasting gospel in the light of judgment.  The ‘saints,’ or holy ones, in the final crisis will be those who have placed their complete faith in (as the original Greek may read) Jesus and His perfect righteousness.  In response to their patient endurance He will send the fullness of His Holy Spirit to finish the work of grace in their lives and seal His law in their hearts (see James 5:7; Hosea 6:3; Hebrews 8:10-12).  Thus God will seal His people through the third angel’s message.

Those who receive this message in its fullness will overcome the beast and his image, and Christ will deliver them from the murderous intentions of Satan (see Revelation 15:2; 12:17).

The final verses of Revelation 14 present two harvest, that of the wheat (verses 14-16) an that of the ‘vine of the earth’ (verses 17-20).  The prophet Joel, who saw a similar scene, declared, ‘Put ye in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe: come, get you down; for the press is full, the fats overflow; for their wickedness is great’ (Joel 3:13).

Quote from Seventh-day Adventist Commentary on Revelation 13:16

“Mark. Gr. charagma, ‘an impress,’ ‘ a stamp,’ ‘a mark.’  This is evidently some badge of loyalty to the beast, some special feature that denotes that the one displaying such a mark worships the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed (v. 8).  Adventist interpreters understand this mark to be no a literal brand but some sign of allegiance that identifies the bearer as loyal to the power represented by the beast.  The controversy at that time will center on the law of God, and particularly on the fourth command.  Hence Sunday observance will constitute such a sign, but not until the time when the beast’s power will be revived and Sunday observance in place of Sabbath observance becomes law.  Adventist hold that simultaneously the third angel’s message will warn against the reception of the mark (ch. 14:9-11).  This message, swelling into a loud cry (ch. 18:1-4), will enlighten men as to the issues involved.  When the issues are thus clearly before them, and men nevertheless choose to support an institution of the beast, observing it and disobeying God’s Sabbath command, they thereby show their allegiance to the beast power and receive the mark.

Right hand … foreheads.  This mark being in the hand or in the forehead may indicate that no only one’s labor (the hand) but also one’s belief is affected.  The phrase may also designate two classes – those who submit to the decrees of the beast merely from expediency and those who so do from personal conviction.”

Quoted from THESE TIMES  (A Special Issue) – The Amazing Prophecies of Daniel and Revelation  (page 48)

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