Thursday, March 2, 2006

Mark of the Beast

http://www.wired.com/news/technology/0,70308-0.html

I've heard this before. People claiming RFID is the mark of the beast and the sign of the end times.

First, a little background. Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags are sweeping the world and revolutionizing the way information is accessed. Believe it or not, we're only a few years away from the grocery store where you just push your cart out and the RFID tags in each item are automatically logged and your account is charged. Only a few years from real-time inventory tracking and always knowing where products are within the store. They will replace bar codes and magnetic stripes very soon.

However, there are several companies, including VeriChip, that are rapidly working on human-implantable RFID chips. Here's the kicker. They say that the best place for these chips to be placed on the human body is either on the back of the hand or on the forehead. And the chips would be used for purchasing, also mentioned in Revelation.

Obviously, this is causing quite a stir in the religious community. People are writing books, giving talks and making websites shouting against RFID because it's the prophesied mark of the beast.

I don't buy it. First of all, Revelation says that the beast will force the mark upon everyone, so I'm sure it's possible that when the beast shows up he may use RFID for his mark, but the tags themselves are not evil. Also, there's the point made at the end of the article that this isn't the first time people have cried out against marking technology.

It's really easy to get caught up in end times thinking. Just reading the passage in revelation kind of gives me a chill. But the Bible also says that the Son himself doesn't know when the time will come. So do we have any business trying to interpret everything as a sign?

I personally don't plan on avoiding RFID just because of this. When the government mandates that everyone receive a chip on their foreheads, then I'll worry.

2 comments:

  1. Shelsy11:39 AM

    Alright, well, I agree that it's pointless for us to sit around worrying and arguing about when Jesus is coming back, b/c it doesn't really matter. But I also think it's naive of us to think that just b/c we don't know the time that we shouldn't still be expecting it and looking for signs.

    2 Thess. 2:8-10 says:

    8And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming. 9The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders, 10and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.

    His coming WILL be preceded by signs and wonders and the purpose of those signs and wonders is to deceive the perishing. The lost will be lured by these things into believing something that is false.

    So, for argument's sake, what harm would it do us to keep a wary eye on things like this radio thing? Especially when the Bible clearly says that the beast will use marks in their hands and foreheads to be used for the purposes of buying and selling. And considering that the world is slowly moving toward a universal currency (Europe's already gotten started with the Euro..) it's very possible that in our lifetime we could see this chip thing become universal. Paper money would become obsolete...

    Not that we should really be worrying about all this, but it seems to me to be quite a coincidence. And I don't believe in coincidences... ;-)

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  2. Wow! Long post there Shelsy! Anyway I personally think that it's not a big deal. I mean where else are you going to put the tags? Your foot? Besides even if it is the Mark, what does it matter? If you are truely a child of God then nothing you inadvertently do is going to change that. And I think RFID is really cool to boot. :-)

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