With COVID-19, mask mandates, compulsory vaccinations, some are speculating that we could be entering the era of the Mark of the Beast and the (always) “rapture of the church.” Revelation 13 is not about vaccinations. For those who claim to interpret the Bible literally, we would be seeing the number 666 everywhere. I’d be willing to wager that there are some prophecy pundits right now who are trying to link 666 with the vaccine. There is this: https://bit.ly/3k4oTtE
I wrote “Buying and Selling and the Mark of the Beast” in response to a sermon that David Jeremiah preached:
In a recent sermon, Pastor David Jeremiah called the COVID-19 pandemic “the most apocalyptic thing that has ever happened to us.” Really? Not the black plague that killed 30 to 60 percent of Europe’s population, two world wars, (Some 75 million people died in World War II, including about 20 million military personnel and 40 million civilians, many of whom died from deliberate genocide, massacres, mass-bombings, disease, and starvation.) the economic crisis of the Great Depression, the Dustbowl of the 1930s, or the Spanish Flu that killed 50 million people at a time when the world population was less than two billion?
We do not need a particular Bible prophecy to tell us what our government is doing regarding the original COVID-19 and subsequent actions are overreach, tyranny, totalitarianism, and despotism. We can add Critical Race Theory, the Green New Deal, government education (indoctrination), the LGBTQ+ forced agenda, the further rise of creeping socialism, the transgender movement, Planned Parenthood, abortion and the selling of aborted baby body parts, and so much more. These are real and tyrannical and totalitarian.
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Some of you will understand what I’m about to say: these are prime indicators of the failed worldview that has arisen to attack “the LORD and His anointed” (Ps. 2:2c). This is the way it’s always been. Sad to say, much of the responsibility resides with Christians who believe that engaging the world with God’s Word is outside the bounds of what we should be doing this side of eternity. If Psalm 2 is not true, then nothing is true. But it is true: “He who sits in the heavens laughs / The Lord scoffs at them” (2:4).
What’s happening in Afghanistan at this very moment is a picture of the abject failure of those who believe that military might is the mechanism of change. Twenty years of wasted lives and wealth? For what? My greatest sorrow is for parents and other loved ones who received news over the past 20 years about the deaths and injuries of those who served in Afghanistan. It’s happened too many times with the same results. When will we learn?
At the moment, many Christians are opposing CRT. That’s good, but a greater evil is the way our nation uses the military in an attempt to fix what cannot be fixed through force. What’s been used internationally is used domestically by Congress and our courts to force compliance to moral evil. Thousands of people have been de-platformed for holding contrary views, but bakers must still bake cakes for homosexuals and people who claim to be “transgender.”
When evil raises its head, too many Christians turn to the last book of the Bible for a way to exonerate their decision to be AWOL from what God has called us to do. More than 25 years ago, prophecy writer Tim LaHaye wrote that Christians should “avoid speculations that go beyond the intent of Scripture, and not make them mean more than is indicated.” LaHaye believed that we are living “within the ‘season,’ or generation” of Christ’s return. He stated “that, while we cannot say dogmatically that Jesus will return in our generation, we can say that our generation has more legitimate reasons for believing it than any previous generation…. [T]he coming of Christ could be at hand… This is the first generation to see the possible fulfillment of that end-time prophecy… Our generation has more reason to believe His coming could be during our lifetime than any other generation before us.” For just one response, see my book Left Behind: Separating Fact From Fiction.
We’ve been hearing such prognostications for nearly two millennia. Once again, Abraham Kuyper’s comment continues to ring true:
Right here is the sore spot… In any successful attack on freedom the state can only be an accomplice. The chief culprit is the citizen who forgets his duty, wastes away his strength in the sleep of sin and sensual pleasure, and so loses the power of his own initiative.
And I will add, that in the face of evil Christians claim that their guaranteed hope is to be rescued by an eschatological event that’s always on the horizon. We can take numerous actions now to turn back the tide of tyranny and totalitarianism while we still have some freedom. If we are unwilling to do these things in the green season, I can assure you they will not be available in the dry. There’s enough history to prove the point.
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 Tim LaHaye, “Twelve Reasons Why This Could be The Terminal Generation,” When the Trumpet Sounds, eds. Thomas Ice and Timothy Demy (Eugene, OR: Harvest House, 1995), 429.
 LaHaye, “Twelve Reasons Why This Could be The Terminal Generation,” 443.
 LaHaye, “Twelve Reasons Why This Could be The Terminal Generation,” 429, 436, 442, 443.
 Abraham Kuyper, “Sphere Sovereignty,” in Abraham Kuyper: A Centennial Reader, 473.