RFID and the Mark of the Beast


barcode mark

In the early 80’s I bought two books by Mary Stewart Relfe that dealt with the coming 666 “mark of the beast” endtime money system and allied technologies, such as bar codes.

Bar codes, you see, had a start/middle/stop signal for the reader that was also, coincidentally, the signal for the number 6. So, three sixes.

That has never stopped me using products with a barcode. Now, if you ask me do I think barcodes will eventually be part of the antichrist deception of the endtimes, my answer would problably be yes. But still today I have no worries about the barcodes on everything in my fridge; I think nothing of it.

Mary Stewart Relfe “When Your Money Fails” 1981 and “The New Money System 666” 1982

Mary Relfe Money System bookAlthough having some thought-provoking information, the books often missed the mark.

Relfe claimed that the Antichrist would appear in 1984 and he would be Anwar El Sadat. Except that he was assassinated in 1981. (Oops)

She said that the hash (#) and asterisk (*) symbols on phones (this was before the day of mobile phones) were introduced to link people electronically to the banking computer. Also that fibre-optics would be fitted with mind-altering rays via your TV; and satellites could melt stray dogs and eventually also those who refused to worship the antichrist. She thought George Orwell was a prophet and based her 1984 prediction upon his book “1984”.

Reviewed as: “Some good information but much paranoia” – and that could be a metaphor for 2020 as well as 1980.

How Far Have We Come

Mary Relfe’s book was ahead of its time. Today bar codes are on everything we buy. Whether or not they will ultimately be incorporated into the Beast Empire before Jesus returns, I don’t know. Nobody can know for sure. But I do know they are not the Mark of the Beast for me today.

Bank Cards

Around the same time as the barcode scare, there was equal alarm in certain Christian circles about credit cards. They made transactions digital and contributed to the coming cashless society. After credit cards came contactless cards. Now just one tap on a machine and the transaction is complete.

Friends of mine refused to have any kind of card, whether a credit or a debit card, and steadfastly held to the belief that owning a bank card was tantamount to worship of the devil.

The World Wide Web

Then after the rise of the Internet, some linked the term WWW to the number 666, since the letter W in Hebrew had the numerical value of six.

It’s a bit of a stretch to get from the World-Wide-Web to the Mark of the Beast but nonetheless there were, and are, Christians who will not use the internet for that reason.

The Implantable Chip

Even more ominous (and something I covered in detail in the 90’s) was the arrival of the RFID chip.

This little identity chip, that is now almost universal in identifying and tracing animals, has undergone continuous refinement, and in recent years had been used in trials in humans.

The implantable ID chip comes the closest yet to the eventual “mark” in having the ability to merge all the former electronic systems into one personal ID – thus answering the question raised by John’s statement in the Book of Revelation, as to how the Mark of the Beast could curtail people’s buying and selling.

Implanting microchips in employees is proving to be convenient for both employers and employees. Data can be stored in chips that are readable by near field communication technology. But the jury is still out, whether this wouldn’t invade individual privacy.

We are used to biometric scanners, heart transplants, cosmetic implants and other scientific, medical and technological advances. For years we have tagged migratory birds and pet animals. A microchip implanted in the body is a technological advance that makes life faster, easier and simpler. Opening front doors, car doors, logging into computers, answering phones, making payments, diagnosing medical information, all these seem to be healthy advances to life and living.

RFID chip and syringe

Precursors, Not the Mark

How many of these ongoing bits of technology put Christians in danger of inadvertently accepting the Mark of the Beast?

The answer is NONE, as yet, for the simple reason that none are associated with the Antichrist nor the coming empire of the Beast. There is no way anyone can accidentally worship the devil through a computer chip, and by the time such a device becomes viable for universal implantation specifically as allegiance to the Antichrist, the Church will have been removed, we believe.

Barcodes are Benign

There are two flaws in claiming that barcodes are the Mark of the Beast, One, they are placed on products not hands and foreheads: “if any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand“.

Secondly, according to the scriptures, receiving the mark will be done with the full knowledge that you would be serving or worshiping the Beast and his coming Kingdom.

Credit Cards

While being a precursor to the “cashless society” that Christians rightly fear, bank cards, whether credit or debit, don’t present any more danger than cash in terms of the devil’s mark.

Pat Robertson said this in his book ‘Answers to 200 of Life’s Most Probing Questions‘ [1984]:

It would not be too difficult, technologically, to move from the smart card to a microchip implanted in the hand. This could be read by a laser-type device that would in turn be connected to a master computer. This could lead to a time when there would be no need for cash or checks: Everything would be done by computer.

However, since he wrote this hardly anything has changed in the use of credit card system to warrant a wholesale panic about the coming Mark of the Beast. There are the obvious dangers of overspending, surveillance and government control, as well as the move away from banknotes and coins, but not such as to fulfill John’s prophecy.

The Internet

I don’t know that anyone today fears that the internet is leading us to the Mark of the Beast, although there are concerns about its use, and its abuse. Like other forms of technology, like the computer itself, the internet can be a tool for good as well as evil.

Once more, it is my belief that the interconnectedness of the entire world through phones and computers will eventually become a useful part of the devil’s system in the last days – which is probably why he inspired its invention and universal approval. One could say the same of many other inventions – TV, broadband, 3D, virtual reality, and much more – but at this present time we are still able to exercise godly wisdom and caution so as to use technology for good purposes.

  • Are all these technologies open to abuse? YES.
  • Do they impinge on our desire for anonymity? YES.
  • Might they eventually be incorporated into the ‘mark of the beast’? Quite Possibly

BUT the question for evangelical Christians today is not, does the technology exist, but at what point will it be used to mark worshippers of the Beast on the right hand or forehead as a sign of their allegiance.

The Mark of the Beast

The sequence of events that leads up to the mark being offered, or forced, on the world’s population is quite distinct in Revelation.

Anything that happens before those events is a precursor only, a sign of things to come but not the actual mark.

We see from Revelation that six seals must be opened, with increasing disaster and chaos for the world, before the herald of a cataclysmic event (beginning in Seal Six but finalised with the seven trumpets sequence) in which a “great mountain” is cast into the sea. [I believe that ‘great mountain’ is satan and his troop of fallen angels being cast out of their current residence – see more fully in Revelation 12:9].

However, BEFORE that time, not only are 144000 from the tribes of Israel sealed to God for safekeeping, but the “great multitude gathered from all nations” suddenly appears before the throne.

Multitudes before the throne

It is only AFTER this awesome shaking and destruction that the Beast appears on earth, the Dragon gives him authority, and the False Prophet comes to coordinate worship of the Beast whose name is 666.

We Have Gone Before the Mark is Introduced

Now it becomes obvious from reading Revelation that no genuine Christian can “take the mark” today, because (as I believe) they will have been taken out of the “great tribulation” that is happening on the earth. (See Revelation Chapter 7). The mark does not exist until that day, when the Beast arises from “the sea” and demands worship.

Whether or not the Beast and his workers will utilise existing technology, having refined it for their own purposes, is a moot point for us today.

Almost certainly they will. However, believing that such technology can damn you to hell right here and now, just for using it, (as some have said) is unsupportable from scripture.

It is rather like saying, my gas stove could kill you. Yes, it could if you used it incorrectly, but that won’t stop me from using the gas stove for genuine and good purposes.

But unto you I say, and unto the rest in Thyatira, as many as have not this doctrine, and which have not known the depths of Satan, as they speak; I will put upon you none other burden. But that which ye have already hold fast till I come. And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations… [Rev 2:24-26]

11 thoughts on “RFID and the Mark of the Beast

  1. The forehead is the same as the frontal lobe where our decisions are made and the hand will then perform what we decides. This is a mark which we not wait for to come because if we not obey the Father we automatically has this ‘mark of disobedience’ in our foreheads and we will automatically carry out the deeds which belongs to that mark. “Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision (in the frontal lobe) for the day of the (obedience or disobedience to the) LORD is near in the valley of decision. Joshua3:14
    [Edited for length: Admin]

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  2. Thank you for this article, I found it very enlightening. Can you tell me why you are no longer pre trib? I have followed you for many years but I may have missed that particular post.

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    • If I understand correctly, Tricia is not post-trib but PreWrath. There is a difference, but many people are unaware of it. The rapture is post-tribulational in the sense that it occurs AFTER the tribulation, but that is not the same as saying one believes in postribulationalism, which is an eschatological system. Postribulationalism is broadly correct in that it places the Rapture after the tribulation, but as a system there are problems with it. PreWrath solves all of these.

      I myself was pretrib at one time. I left as my knowledge of context, hermeneutics and rightly handling the Word of truth grew. I could not sustain a belief based upon what I began to see were unfounded assumptions, eisegesis, circular arguments and blatant disregard for context. Many pretribbers are leaving pretrib now for the exact same reasons.

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    • Hi, My explanation of how my classic pre-seven-year rapture beliefs changed was posted to my website (years before I had this blog). Reading through it today, I would say some of what I concluded at that time has been further refined, but it would take too long to explain it here. I don’t believe the Church will stay on earth until the coming of the Lord (post-trib, as it’s called) but nor do I subscribe to the dispensationalist view that has every Christian removed from the earth before ANY of the signs of the end.
      My own journey away from pre-trib is described here: http://www.birthpangs.org/articles/biblical/nailing-colours.html

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  3. I would concur. In brief, this whole confusion arose with J.N. Darby’s teachings. Pretrib Rapture Theory in particular muddies the waters by conflating the Day of the LORD, the Great Tribulation and the 70th Week as if they were the exact same thing.This is simply not sustainable exegetically. Pretribbers also confuse matters immensely by trying to force ALL of the 70th Week of Daniel to be God’s outpoured eschatological wrath on the ungodly. This simply WRONG, but this is why there is so much confusion. It can be clearly seen in Matt. 24 that Antichrist’s “great tribulation” against Christians begins at the mid-point of the 70th Week after he sets up the abomination of desolation in the holy place: this is also depicted in Rev. 11-13 as his war against the saints and in Dan. 7. The day of the LORD (aka the day of vengeance of our God) only begins at the 7th Seal. Clearly at the 5th Seal the martyrs in heaven under the altar are unaware that any vengeance or judgment for their shed blood has been meted out. In the 6th Seal we see that the day of the LORD is imminent, as men go into hiding to escape the wrath about to be poured out. The 7th Seal contains the 7 trumpets which are actually the first stages of the wrath. Remaining living believers appear in heaven between the 6th and 7th Seal. I am only putting this very, very briefly. Incidentally a truly excellent book on this subject is Alan Kurschner’s “Antichrist Before the Day of the Lord”. It’s the best book on PreWrath out there.

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    • Thanks for that. I agree in essence but my terminology would place “tribulation” differently, as not being the wrath of God nor the reign of the antichrist. I had to alter my belief on that from seeing the use of the word in bible texts. As you say, the waters were very muddied by dispensationalism, and I don’t think many of us have come completely out of it as to our use of certain words. I wish we could all just go back and start again! 🙂

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    • I’m not sure I understand your question. It’s true I am no longer pre-trib but that doesn’t mean I am POST trib. OOH, I think I see the confusion. I mentioned that the great multitude seen suddenly in Heaven had come out of “the great tribulation of those days” as the angel told John. My post here wasn’t the place to go into a long explanation of that, but I don’t believe the tribulation that both Jesus and John mentioned is the same as the supposed “seven years/last week of Daniel”.

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      • Thank you, Tricia. I am post trib and I guess I assumed that when you changed your view you became a post tribber. Sorry to assume that!

        Do you believe the 70 weeks have been fulfilled?

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      • Basically, no. But bible prophecy is many-layered. In one sense the Daniel prophecy was fulfilled in the Lord’s first coming and the destruction of Jerusalem, but in a wider sense it has still to be fulfilled. However, the bible never specifies a time scale for the events of the end, apart from designating three and a half years for the reign of the Beast.

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      • If the 70th Week has been fulfilled, then Jesus has returned in glory and set up His millennial kingdom and no one has noticed. I would regard that as problematic.

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