Can you imagine a world in which you would never lose your car keys or wallet? Or have them stolen?
Can you imagine a world in which you would never have to stand in line at the grocery store? Or the airline ticket counter? Or TSA?
Can you imagine a world in which you would never have to worry about having your identity stolen when shopping online? Or your credit cards accessed by hackers?
Can you imagine a world in which you would never have to worry about filling out tax forms? Or keeping track of receipts?
Can you imagine a world in which you would never have to worry about your grandmother falling and not being able to summon help? Or a heart attack or a stroke dropping you before you could call 911?
You don’t have to imagine.
That world is here.
All of these things are now possible, or will soon be possible, because of the microchip.
And the incredible convenience and safety the microchip promises will be possible because of The System.
The System will link all of the services and protections the citizens of the world could ever want or need and automatically provide them to the bearer of the microchip.
For a world that worships at the altar of “convenience,” The System will be the ultimate servant.
For a world that is rapidly descending into fear, The System will be the ultimate protector.
And that is how the Antichrist and the False Prophet will get billions of people to take the Mark of the Beast.
It will promise the convenience and safety we all crave.
Does that sound like the plot line for a science-fantasy movie coming soon to your local theater? Well, it’s not.
The technology to accomplish everything I have just described is already available. Granted, much of it is in the rudimentary stages, but we all know from experience that once a technology is invented, its perfection and utilization often follows at blinding speed.
What’s more, the Bible prophets predicted that in the final days of this Age of Grace, knowledge (technology) would increase exponentially in both breadth and speed.
For the Mark of the Beast System to work as it must, it will require a cashless world and participation by most of its people.
Daily, the governments of the world call for the abolition of physical cash as the world’s currency. They are joined by corporations, banks, intellectuals, terrorism experts, drug trafficking experts, organized crime prosecutors, and even public health officials.
And that time is closer than you may think. Today, the world’s monetary structure is no longer based on gold, silver, or even boxes of paper bills stashed in the vaults of banks or national treasuries. The zeroes and ones of computer code already serve as the world’s true currency.
Do you doubt that people will willingly accept a microchip implanted in their hand to receive the conveniences and safety The System will provide?
Last week in Wisconsin, a small firm offered to implant a microchip in the hand of any employee who chose to accept it. The payoff? The employee would no longer need an ID card to enter the building, a password to access the computer system, or cash or credit card to purchase items from the company break room.
None of those activities sound too taxing or inconvenient, do they? Yet almost half of the 85 employees chose to have the chip implanted in their bodies in return for the basic and very limited “convenience” it offered.
How can they refuse when the Mark of the Beast System offers lavish, almost unlimited, convenience and safety?
The Bible says they won’t.
Also on this week’s program, I’ll discuss what Plato called in 488 BC, “the ship of state.”
Right now, the United States Ship of State is leaking — badly.
Not since the infamous “White House Plumbers” has the nation faced as critical an internal threat as it does right now because of the incessant, criminal leaking of sensitive information by individuals across our national government.
This is not the work of patriots, but traitors. The U.S. government is at war with itself. And that makes the world more dangerous for everyone.
Finally, this week I want to tell you about what I believe is the first and worst of the doctrine of demons: Legalism.
In Hebrew, the word for “Satan” means “Adversary.” In his role as “god of this age,” Satan conducts a relentless, well-planned strategy to blind men’s minds to the truth about God and how to know Him.
One of his most effective tools is “legalism.” That is, seeking to live for God by the principle of Law. It is the dent in your armor at which Satan will chip away until he has a hole big enough to drive a truck through.
Satan knows that a personal faith-walk with God is based upon the principle of “grace” instead of “law.” So his goal is to slowly lead even mature believers into a sense that what was begun in faith must be perfected by the flesh. To trade “grace” for “law.”
He constantly seeks to keep unbelievers away from “grace.” For those who have already come to Christ, he seeks to erase “grace” from your thoughts and beliefs. Satan is perfectly happy with the believer striving to live by the “law.”
Don’t fall prey to the deceptions of the Adversary. Trust your salvation to the only one who can actually save you — Jesus.
Faith is perhaps the most central element in the Christian life because it is the means by which we enter into salvation. But that’s only the beginning. From then onward, our faith–or lack of it–shapes our lives and determines what happens to us when the winds of adversity blow. Some Christians never lose their footing even in hurricane-force winds, but others are toppled by the slightest gust. To understand why this is true, we need to examine the source of our faith.
Inherited faith: If you grew up in a Christian home, you probably adopted some of the beliefs of your parents. This kind of godly foundation is a wonderful gift from the Lord, but eventually, each person must assume responsibility for his own beliefs.
Textbook faith: The Bible is the ultimate guide for establishing our beliefs. But that’s not the only source of influence. Books, preachers, teachers, and friends all impact our convictions. Our theology may in fact be sound, but faith is merely mental acceptance until it’s put to the test.
Proven Faith: Only when we trust the Lord through the fires of adversity will we have faith that can stand. It is no longer based on what others have told us or what we’ve accepted as true but on our firsthand experience of His faithfulness.
To evaluate your faith, consider how you react to adversity. Do you cling to the Lord or get angry at Him? Is your attitude one of rejoicing because He’s making you more like His Son, or are you bitter? No one can escape adversity, but those with proven faith will benefit from it.
God is always at work in our lives. Even during seasons of adversity, He wants to accomplish something powerful and good. How should this knowledge affect our response? Today’s passage teaches us to choose to rejoice during difficult times. This doesn’t mean we have to be happy about the hardship itself. Instead, joy comes from drawing close to the Lord and believing steadfastly that through His redemptive power, He is growing and preparing us. If your usual response to trials is anxiety, anger, or depression, the idea of having joy in the midst of a negative situation might not seem logical. However, if you look beneath the surface, you will discover that this biblical directive makes sense for several reasons.
Often, our natural reaction to pain is to run in the opposite direction, and as fast as possible. However, God wants to teach us endurance–much like a long-distance runner builds up strength in training–so that we can fully benefit from what He is doing in our hearts. He uses trials as a refining fire to purify us like gold and bring us to greater spiritual maturity. As we realize that we are actually being made more complete through our adversities, we’ll begin to face challenging times with confidence that He always has our best interest in mind.
While a worldly viewpoint sees hope and joy in the midst of dark times as naïve, a spiritual perspective discerns that we’re really progressing on a journey toward life at its fullest. We can be filled with supernatural joy, knowing that the Lord is making us into world-changing spiritual warriors.