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The Mark of the Beast or the Seal of God?

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SYNOPSIS:  In Revelation, “all” means “all.” All rulers, nations, and inhabitants of the earth that refuse to follow the Lamb render homage to the Beast.

Discussions on the “mark of the Beast” focus on the significance of its number, ‘666.’  This is understandable; Christians wish to understand what this mark is to avoid taking it. Just as important as decoding the number is to understand the implications of taking it and how the book of Revelation contrasts it with the “seal of God” (Revelation 7:1-313:16-18).

The Everlasting Gospel Prepares for the Coming Harvest

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SYNOPSIS:Having contrasted the followers of the Lamb with the men that pay homage to Beast, the book presents the reader with a definitive choice with two very different everlasting consequences - Revelation 14:6-7.
The two preceding paragraphs presented two different groups. First, the “inhabitants of the earth” that render homage to the Beast. Second, the 144,000 saints purchased from the earth who “follow the Lamb wherever he goes.” There is no third category or middle ground between the two (Revelation 13:11-1814:1-5).

The Antichrist - What Kind of Leader?

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SYNOPSIS:Will the Antichrist be a global political leader or the ultimate deceiver sent by the Dragon to destroy the Church of Jesus Christ from within? 
The Antichrist is popularly portrayed as a global political leader, often a militaristic tyrant bent on global domination. Perhaps, in the end, this will prove to be the case.
However, New Testament warnings place far more stress on future deceivers, often ones that originate from within the church. Furthermore, in the book of Revelation, the target of the “war” waged by the Beast on behalf of the Dragon is the church, which is comprised of faithful followers of the Lamb:

The Beast Wars Against the Saints - (Revelation 13:6-10)

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SYNOPSIS:The Beast from the sea now wages war on the followers of the Lamb in obedience to the Dragon – Revelation 13:6-10.
The Beast from the sea is the Dragon’s agent assigned by him to annihilate the saints. For a time, the Beast is given authority over all nations and peoples with which to execute this task. Humanity is divided into two groups:  Men and women who render homage to the Beast and Dragon, the “inhabitants of the earth,” and the men and women who follow the Lamb regardless of where he leads, the “saints,” “them who tabernacle in heaven.” The latter, consequently, suffer persecution and martyrdom.

Unsealing Daniel's Scroll

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SYNOPSIS:The “scroll” that Daniel was commanded to “seal shut” is unsealed and its contents unveiled in the book of Revelation.
At the close of his visions Daniel was commanded by an angel to seal shut the contents of the scroll “until the SEASON of the end.” This did not mean that his visions were not written down or that copies were not available for others to read. The existence of the book of Daniel has preserved for posterity the details of his dreams and visions.
But the interference of the angel’s words was that a proper understanding of his visions would not be forthcoming until a future point or “season.” We should note that Daniel himself did not understand the full import of his visions at pivotal points.
For example, at the end of his dream about four “beasts ascending from the sea,” the prophet remained troubled by what he had seen (“Greatly did my thoughts terrify me, and my bright looks were changed upon me, but the matter—in mine own heart I kept” – Daniel 7:28).
Likewise,…

The Two Witnesses - (Revelation 11:3-14)

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SYNOPSIS:  Having been prepared in the “measuring” of the sanctuary, the Two Witnesses carry out their prophetic witness to the “inhabitants of the earth.”
The church in its mission to prophesy to nations and kings is now represented by the Two Witnesses who engage in their prophetic witness before the “inhabitants of the earth.” Their ministry continues for a period of “twelve hundred and sixty days” or forty-two months until they are slain by the Beast from the Abyss.
(Revelation 11:3-6) – “And I will give unto my two witnesses that they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and sixty days, arrayed in sackcloth. These are the two olive-trees and the two lampstands, which before the Lord of the earth do stand. And, if any one upon them chooseth to inflict injury, fire cometh forth out of their mouth and devoureth their enemies; and, if anyone shall choose upon them to inflict injury, thus, must he be slain. These have authority to shut heaven in order that no rain be moistening in the …