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Apocalypse soon

The Mark of the Beast

"And 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, 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. 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."
Revelation 13:16-18

MARK= from Greek "CHARAGMA," meaning "a stamp," "an impression," "something etched."

One question that I have often asked myself is this:
What will be the spark that will get the world into the "Mark of the Beast" mode? What is the MARK of the BEAST?

Revelation 13:16-18 must be one of the most quoted verses from the Bible, and probably one of the most misquoted and misunderstood ones, the stuff of legends. It describes a specific action which will be put into effect at a specific point of time. This much is clear. As of the time and of the action per se, well, let's see where we are.

What the verse is basically saying is that at some point in time, someone will put into effect a system of personal identification, without which, anybody who will not subscribe to it, will be cut off from any and all commercial transactions: he would not be able to buy food, services and other items, neither could he sell his production, whatever that may be.
It does not take a university degree to understand that this will involve a highly computerized and therefore controlled system: no other way or mechanism, would be possible to enforce it, at least at this time. And at this time, for the first time of the recorded history of man, such a system is not only possible, but it is actually being implemented, albeit unconsciously by its proponents.

Certainly, such a novel and revolutionary system will have to look invitingly needed and useful to its takers and while the procedures and technologies for its implementation constitute the outward aspect of the Mark, we must look principally to what really lies behind this project, the spiritual aspect of this event.
When this Mark will be forced on the world population, there will be different responses to it. It is clear that some of those who will take the Mark, will somewhat understand the meaning of their action. Some others will take it because, having repeatedly refused the Gospel, will be unable to distinguish the pit they are falling into, and still others, for fear of starvation and persecution. Indeed, when the time will fully arrive, people will have only two choices: take the Mark or die, (apart from those who will go in hiding, a desperate illusion, at best, but not too unprobable, in many respects).

At that time, however, taking the Mark will be the worst possible choice, since, while it will allow life on earth it will exclude its taker from Eternal Life, and that without remission.

The opportunities of implementing the Mark are and will be many. Be it from a world-wide financial crash, the aftermath of a new world war or to some other global event that will shake the present financial, commercial and otherwise fundamental institutions of the present world, one thing is certain: this universal system will be implemented, it's just a question of time.

Technology-wise, the Mark could be put into effect quite fast. Important scientific discoveries have been pushing "security" (control) technology to incredible peaks, and what is needed at most is a general standardization of the various systems which are already in use. There are so many systems already at work that Mr. Antichrist will have only the embarassment of the choice.

On March 2, 1999 a patent was granted to what could well be the very precursor of the MARK:

Method for verifying human identity during electronic sale transactions

A method is presented for facilitating sales transactions by electronic media. A bar code or a design is tattooed on an individual. Before the sales transaction can be consummated, the tattoo is scanned with a scanner. Characteristics about the scanned tattoo are compared to characteristics about other tattoos stored on a computer database in order to verify the identity of the buyer. Once verified, the seller may be authorized to debit the buyer's electronic bank account in order to consummate the transaction. The seller's electronic bank account may be similarly updated.

It seems almost incredible that we are seeing the fulfillment of the prophecy right before our eyes. You can read all about it in the US PATENT AND TRADEMARK OFFICE site.

But there is much more happening in the High Tech world we live in. Just read the following article, courtesy of the MSNBC news network (Nov 99)

Is Big Brother spying on you?
Watch Ike Seaman's Special Report   http://www.msnbc.com/ Imagine your government being able to listen in on every call you make, check every fax you send and find out about your ATM and credit card transactions. Stop imagining. It is not a movie...it’s real. Big Brother– the U.S. government– may be secretly spying on you. It may sound far-fetched, but it is true. A super-secret hi-tech surveillance system has been in place for years to monitor communications world wide. It is operated by five countries– the U.S., England, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Now former spies and others are coming forward to warn that this system may be being used to listen to you.
From thousands of miles in space, satellites are monitoring every form of communication in the world. They are zeroing in on your phone calls, e-mails, faxes, etc. So who is controlling this super secret surveillance system?... Government spy agencies.
“This is a giant vacuum cleaner that’s capable of sweeping up essentially all telecommunications,” said Barry Steinhardt of the American Civil Liberties Union.

It’s worse than that. It’s also capable of intercepting all your ATM charges, credit card transactions, anything that is communicated electronically,” added former spy Mike Frost. Messages are intercepted by a system that looks like something out of a spy novel.
Twenty satellites circle the globe transmitting communications from businesses, government, and people like you. The messages are intercepted by a system that sounds like something from a spy novel.

It is called ECHELON– a vast worldwide network of eavesdropping stations such as the one in Sabena Seca, Puerto Rico, which was originally built to spy on Cold War enemies.

It is controlled by the  National Security Agency in Fort Meade, Maryland and is bigger than the FBI and CIA combined. Many Americans first heard about the NSA’S awesome eavesdropping capability in the movie “Enemy of the State.” In it Gene Hackman warns Will Smith: “The National Security Agency conducts worldwide surveillance: Fax, phones, satellite communications.”
A growing number of critics charge this potential to invade your privacy is targeting Americans.

“To say that Big Brother is listening is somewhat of an understatement given the magnitude of what appears to be going on here,” said Rep. Bob Barr, a Republican from Georgia.
NSA computers scan millions of messages listening for keywords trying to find terrorists, drug dealers and threats to national security. Experts estimate ECHELON also spies on as much as 90 percent of Internet communications.
Privacy experts such as Wayne Madsen, a former NSA analyst, say if information gathered by high-tech computers such as these are mis-used, innocent people can easily get caught in ECHELON’s web.

“If you were to say I’m reading a book about the Kennedy assassination right now, the assassination is a key word. It would trigger the ECHELON database,” Madsen, a former NSA analyst, said. “These are innocent conversations that are being analyzed by intelligence operatives.”
According to Frost, one man was a suspect because an analyst said he repeatedly talked about “bombing. “He wasn’t saying “bombing.” It was an undertaker talking about embalming and this poor guy, we had him listed as a possible terrorist,” said Frost, who was a spy for 19 years. He was trained to use ECHELON for Canada’s secret spy agency, a NSA partner.
“They can invade your privacy and mine at will,” Frost continued.

Frost is the first insider to ever talk about the secret eavesdropping system and NBC 6 is the first American television station or network to tell his story. He showed NBC 6 Senior Correspondent Ike Seamans an ECHELON base in Ottawa, Canada which he says can violate anyone’s privacy.
“It’s being geared toward individuals rather than the enemy. We are now looking at citizens of our own country.”

Abdeen Jabara says he was not a threat when he led protests against U.S. Middle East policy. But when he sued the government for invasion of privacy– and won– in 1994, he learned the NSA spied on him.
“For all I know, the NSA still has this material. They have an enormous amount of material that they maintain in computers as a result of this surveillance that has gone on against Americans for many years and I’m just one of them,” said civil rights activist Abdeen Jabara. The NSA spy base in Menwith Hill, England is the largest in the world. Outside the spy base, using a home satdish aimed at a communications satellite, protesters discovered how easy it is to eavesdrop... on you.

The NSA refuses to confirm or deny anything. James Bamford first revealed the extent of NSA’s spying in the book “The Puzzle Palace.”
“The NSA is like a black hole. Everything goes in but nothing comes out,” Bamford said. “Yes, they eavesdrop on foreign countries but that is what their job is. The question is– Will the system be turned on the U.S. population? And that’s the big danger.”
“Big Brother can invade your privacy at will anytime he wants to and you will never know it. And it’s really scary,” Frost warned, “If this isn’t checked in the near future, it’s going to to become a very serious problem.”

Slowly but surely, we are advancing into the Mark of the Beast time. All the scoffers at the Bible and at Christianity in general, will soon experience upon their own skin (literally) what it means to ignore the Word of God. The various prophecies related to the Mark were made two millennia ago, and they are now finding their fulfillment. Why did it take so long? For one thing, God does not measure time as we do. He is Eternal, He is ALWAYS. But we can and should be grateful of the time we have been allowed, both personally and for reaching out to others. We will incessantly warn all, both Christians and others of what is coming up. We are not asking to be believed just because we say it. We invite people to be intelligent, to examine what the Scriptures say, and to compare that with what is happening. Case in point, just read this article and wander!

New technology getting under some people's skin
 By Jon E. Dougherty
© 1999 WorldNet

Daily.com Researchers say the technology is currently available to implant biometric devices in human beings, which can be monitored by government satellites and utilized by private industry. In fact some developers are currently attempting to bring the technology to the public and private sector. Though not yet generally available to the public, trials of sub-skin implants have been underway for nearly a year.
For instance, The London Times reported in October 1998, "... Film stars and the children of millionaires are among 45 people, including several Britons, who have been approached and fitted with the chips (called the Sky Eye) in secret tests." Critics, however, are worried about the increased support such devices are receiving because of the inherent risk to individual privacy.
They contend that several governments, including the U.S., possess the ability to monitor such devices and, as a consequence, the people who have them -- even though they may not be wanted for a crime, listed as a missing person, or considered dangerous in any way.
A recent study of microchip implantation technology, written by Elaine M. Ramish for the Franklin Pierce Law Center, examined at length the ethical issue of privacy, which engulfs every debate surrounding implanted biometric devices. The study provided details about current research and development as well as marketing plans developers are likely to use to "sell" the idea to a generally skeptical American public and U.S. Congress... (abridged)

And more of the same...

December 20, 1999
By Richard Stenger CNN Interactive Writer Washington (CNN

A Palm Beach, Florida-based telecommunications company has developed a miniature digital monitoring device that can be implanted in people, intended to assist in locating missing children or for monitoring the heart rate of at-risk patients. But electronic freedom activists are concerned about exploitation of the technology, which would use global positioning system (GPS) technology to track implantees. 
"It sounds dreadful. That's about as bad as it gets," Marc Rotenberg, director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center in Washington, said Monday. Applied Digital Solutions announced last week it had acquired patent rights to develop the unique transceiver, which would be powered by muscle movements of implantees. 
The company plans to complete a working prototype by the end of 2000.  Planted inconspicuously just under the skin, the implantable transceiver sends and receives data and can be continuously tracked by GPS technology.  The company expects applications in the fields of law enforcement, security and medicine.

According to ADS, a company with an Internet and e-commerce focus, the devise could track lost hikers, abducted children and "military, diplomatic and other essential government personnel." It can also identify individuals for e-business security and check certain biological functions and alert a monitoring facility if it detects a medical emergency.  "We believe its potential for improving individual and e-business security and enhancing the quality of life for millions of people is virtually limitless," said ADS Chairman and CEO Richard Sullivan in a statement.