So I’ve noticed a lot of comments throughout the months in regards to people going through hard times, and also about all the events taking place in our world today, the fear and uncertainty it’s causing on not only a national level but also a global level. People have asked what our viewpoint is on the illness, and also what we feel about the vaccines… and while I may not be giving the clear answers you are looking for, there are some things I think it would be wise if we would all consider.
There is a saying of J. Micheal that I feel is somewhat relevant here.
“Remember, there are always two sides to every story. Understanding is a three edged sword. Your side, their side and the truth in the middle. Get all the facts before you jump to conclusions.”
So for right now, let’s all stop wielding our hypothetical swords, put aside our differences.... If you are into politics, throw that down too, and let’s step back and try to look at things from a more calm perspective. Because It’s so easy to lump people into a group, especially in today’s world where if someone doesn’t quite agree with a viewpoint they are immediately canceled and thrown under the bus so to speak.
Depending on a person’s viewpoint, our tendency is to class them with a certain group, ideology, etc. and I know for myself I find it’s easier to struggle with anger and hatred in my heart towards a faceless group (because somehow that seems more justifiable) than it is to hate an individual person that you recognize as someone that has struggles, fears, and misgivings just the same as you do.
Some of the greatest atrocities in history have happened when people have been convinced that a certain group (whether it’s race, religion etc.) are evil and subhuman, and once they are convinced of this in their minds they can then dissociate this group from humanity, and this justifies in their minds the terrible acts they commit against other humans.
Don’t be fooled. There is a monster inside all of us, and there is no limit to what it will do if we allow hate into our hearts, because this monster will be convinced that it is fighting for the right cause.
Hitler dehumanized the Jews, and turned almost an entire country anti-Semitic in a short amount of time. When people truly believe that another group is ‘subhuman’, there is no depth too low that humankind can stoop too when controlled by hate.
I’m not condoning being apathetic, we are to stand for what is right… I’m simply throwing out the caution, if we are being fueled by anger, hatred, and heated emotions like we see everywhere today, wisdom will be lacking.
Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry:
for anger resteth in the bosom of fools.
Be ye therefore wise as serpents,
and harmless as doves. Matthew 10:16
Hatred stirreth up strifes:
but love covereth all sins. Proverbs 10:12
The pandemic has literally turned the world upside down and caused major tensions worldwide.
On one side you have people that are terrified of covid and what it could do to them. Fear runs their lives… the fear of sickness, death, and of the nightmare never ending because of the people that don’t take things seriously (like social distancing, masking, vaccines etc.) They view the opposing side as stubborn, ignorant, rebellious, and hatred can easily spring up against this group.
On the other side you have a group that is terrified of the government or the vaccine, or usually both. These people have various viewpoints… maybe believing this was all started to manage the population, to create a one world government, take away freedoms, and control people. Fear runs their lives and they are more worried about the ramifications of lockdowns and mandates then they are of covid itself. Many christians believe the Vaccine is the Mark of the Beast or possibly opening the door to the Mark, which adds yet another fear to the mix. This group tends to view the other side as spineless, apathetic, and unable to think for themselves, and hatred can easily spring up against this group.
So if we could, let’s take a step back, and instead of viewing these two sides as faceless groups with ‘wrong’ viewpoints… let us view them as individuals. People that have feelings just as you and I. They have the desire to be heard and to be understood. They both have fears and uncertainties just in different ways. They are both terrified. They both have the desire to be safe and to live a good life. They are fathers, mothers, sons and daughters. They are parents that want what they feel is best for their children. They are human.
When we can start seeing each other in this light, maybe we can lay down some of our heated emotions and try to think more clearly and not so easily get swept away in the chaos.
If you are a Christian, no matter which side of this thing you fall on… we are told not to live in fear. There is nothing Satan wants more than for people to fear, because fear is torment and he would love nothing better than to steal our peace.
There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts
out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who
fears has not been made perfect in love. 1 John 4:18
We as Christians, are to live a joyful, peace-filled life… not a life run by fear.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4: 6-7
Moving on… in the Christian world, there is so much talk about The Mark of The Beast and end times; diving into Revelation and trying to figure out where in the timeline we currently fall in regards to end times.
One thing we would caution… no matter what viewpoint you hold of Revelations, is to be careful how much the end times prophecies consume you. It is wise to read Revelation and do our best to understand it… however when debates and viewpoints become so heated that it divides members of God’s body, is that what Jesus wants of us? Is it possible to be so wrapped up in trying to figure out the end times timeline that we forget that our true mission here on this earth is to love others and spread the gospel message? Are we so caught up in trying to figure out what the Mark of the Beast is that we are forgetting the power of the One we serve?
Don’t misunderstand, it is wise to be aware of everything that is happening, to keep our eyes and ears open, to compare world happenings with what the Bible is saying… however, just remember that a person’s viewpoint on revelation isn’t a Salvation Issue. It’s not heresy for one Christian to believe a different viewpoint than another Christian, on what Revelation is trying to tell us. I’m sure some will disagree with me in the comments, however nowhere in the New Testament do you find any teachings to back this. Salvation is in repenting and believing in Jesus, and Jesus simply tells us to be constantly ready and waiting for his return. The gospel message is so simple, yet people like to make it complicated.
It breaks my heart to see the fear in people when it comes to trying to decode this Mark of the Beast in Revelation. I was scrolling through the comments under a video on the subject and read this comment that made me so sad, and I quote…
“I’ve been scared that I took something like the mark of the beast or something by getting covid swabbed.. I pray the swab doesn’t have anything bad on it. I don’t think it’s the mark… like you said but I still question if the swabs are bad. I want God to forgive me for getting swabbed and undo anything it may have caused.”
This breaks my heart. The bondage and fear this poor lady has and I know this mindset is more common among believers than one might think.
My husband and I hold to a different viewpoint of Revelation than many Christians do, which I’ll touch briefly on later… and we both realize that we could be wrong in this viewpoint, however, there is one thing WE KNOW FOR CERTAIN.
The God that we serve, is a God of order and design. His plan for Salvation is perfect and clear. John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
When We repent and believe, we become children of God!
Behold what manner of love the Father hath
bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God! 1 John 3:1
Listen closely to this next verse.
I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. I and the Father are one. John 10:28-30
My friends, there is no power, no person, no thing that can sneak up and take us away from the Father. It is a personal choice. We are the only people that can decide to walk away. No other power on earth can separate us from the love of God. There is no vaccine, no chip, no mark that can be forced upon us, or we take unknowingly that will suddenly separate us from God.
For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels,
nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us
from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Now whether this Mark of the Beast will be a literal mark or something figurative, there are a few things quite clear in these verses.
Revelation 13 speaks of this Mark, and it is tied directly with worship of the beast. This mark and worshiping the beast go hand in hand. So we know that somehow this mark is likely an image of the beast or represents the beast in some way. If we are taking Revelation literally then in Chapter 14 there is an angel that flies over the earth saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receives his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God.
So if and when this time comes, those that know God will recognize the beast. There will be clear warnings from the angel, and this mark will be tied directly in worship to the beast.
I know I kept saying if we take this ‘literally’... the reason being is I believe there is a possibility this is a symbolic picture of events, as these are some of the questions I ask in regards to these verses.
Everyone gets so worried about this Mark of the Beast, (and granted, it also concerns me and we want to be wise and not blind) but seem to disregard all the verses about God’s people having his seal on their foreheads.
And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads. Revelations 9:4
And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father's name written in their foreheads. Revelations 14:1
The second question I would raise, if this is a literal chip, tattoo or such, then it could be forcefully applied to a person. For those concerned about the vaccine, or a microchip (which trust me, I definitely want nothing to do with a chip), but in all honesty, I could be forcefully taken against my will and have these things done to me. We know for a fact, that there is no power on earth that can take our Salvation from us.
Once again… Romans 8:38-39
So no matter which way this will happen, literal or figurative… we as God’s children will not be caught unawares and suddenly find ourselves with a mark that we wanted nothing to do with. We serve a powerful God. He’s bigger than any beast or monster or any such thing, and if we make sure to walk with Him daily and align ourselves with His word, there is nothing we need to fear. NO THING. NO ONE. NO POWER! NO HUMAN! NO BEAST!
Rest in that. Find peace in that.
Another thing that concerns me with those that are so wrapped up in trying to figure out Revelation and where we might be on the timeline of the end times, is this verse in Mathew. 24:36 “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.
There is a blemish on the Christian name, and that is all these so called ‘prophets’ that time and time again predicted the day or year of Jesus return because they were so certain they had Revelation figured out, and time and time again they were proven false. Mathew 24:36 is clear that no man will know the day or the hour.
There are many verses in the Bible that tell that Jesus is going to come like a thief in the night, when people are least expecting Him, and that we should always be ready and watching. Which is why I believe there is a bit of danger to be constantly looking at Revelation and thinking certain things still must come to pass before Jesus can return.
Nolan and I personally believe Revelation is mostly symbolic writings, In the era that Revelation was written, this type of writing, Apocalyptic writing, was quite common and understood to be symbolic imagery, and while we understand that we could be wrong in this viewpoint, we feel it’s what best lines up with the rest of the gospels, and portrays the Jesus of the New Testament and the message given there.
One of our subscribers had previously asked a great question. She said she understands that Anabaptists believe in taking the Bible literally, so why would we take revelation symbolically?
I’d like to first clarify that many Anabaptist do hold to the pre-millennial viewpoint, (which is the viewpoint that we will be raptured before the tribulation and a literal 1000 year reign of Christ on earth) but the original viewpoint of Anabaptists would be the a-millennial view, where we view the millennial as happening right now, and the return of Jesus and the rapture of the Saints will be the end of the millennium.
Back to the subscribers question… no one takes the bible completely literally. There are parts that were not meant to be taken this way, and we need to understand the types of writings. For instance, Psalms is a book of poetry, Song of Solomon a love letter, and there are many pictures and parables in the bible that are illustrations.
Psalm 50:10 says: for every animal of the forest is mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills.
We know that all cattle are the Lord’s… this is poetic writing where 1000 depicts a large number… we know that God doesn’t just own the cattle on the first 1000 hills and then on hill 1001 they are suddenly are no longer His.
In the same way, when revelation talks about 1000 year reign we see this as symbolic to a large amount of time.
Another example Revelation 19:15 "And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations:
We would see this as a picture of the Sword being God’s word. Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
So to me this is a picture of God’s Word and truth coming from Jesus Mouth with which he will judge the nations.
Those are a few examples to answer that question. I’m not going over this trying to convince anyone to change their viewpoint, but simply sharing ours.
Why am I sharing all this? I know we all can easily become anxious and the constant bombardment of terrible news, so called prophetic messages, 1001 conspiracies, has a tendency to eat away at the peace in our hearts. Instead of keeping our eyes on Jesus, we look around at the chaos and unrest in the world and fear of the unknown grips our hearts. I think we women sometimes battle with worry and anxiety more… our mother hearts are worried for our children and what they might face and the list goes on and on. I’ve been there, and I felt that God laid it on my heart to share this in hopes that it can fight some of the fear and anxieties that so easily overtake us.
Be careful what you watch online and I’m talking to myself here. There are many false teachers, false pastors, and false prophets. Don’t you think it’s kind of odd when a person has a youtube channel solely about revelations from God? And they have to consistently make a video every week or a few times a week to keep making money? Doesn’t it seem a bit odd to you that God keeps showing up with new revelations just in time for their next video? I’m not saying it’s not possible, but I’m simply saying to be careful.
The internet has made it possible for everyone that feels inclined to share their opinion, thoughts, truths or deception, to be able to do so, and we soon have more information to siphon through than what was ever intended for our minds to handle. It’s easy to become swayed by someone that has eloquence, an official sounding degree or name, public speaking abilities, leadership qualities or simply good looks, and when we are feeling vulnerable with all the present uncertainties, we are more prone to easily fall to viewpoints and beliefs that may be false because we need some kind of explanation for this chaos.
There is something in us humans that thrive on bad news, horror stories, conspiracies, etc. The media knows that Bad News sells, and this is why the news can get so depressing, because it seems it’s all that is ever on the news… and that is because it’s what makes people stop and read and thus generates more revenue for the media.
If it wasn’t for the news, I would hardly know covid ever happened in our town. People carry on with their lives as normal, few talk about it, few stores require masks, and people are friendly and kind, generally. Yet when watching the news, we get all the bad information from every part of the globe, and it’s information overload… and quickly we can become depressed and burdened down.
So again, let’s be Be careful how much media we consume. Make sure we are walking closely with Jesus, and prioritize our relationship with Him. Let’s Stop agonizing and worrying about Revelation timelines etc. and whether or not we got the Mark of the Beast somehow unknowingly.
Nevertheless the solid foundation of God stands,
having this seal: “The Lord knows those who are His,” and,
“Let everyone who names the name of
Christ depart from iniquity.” 2 Timothy 2:19
We are living in the last days… all the things Jesus spoke of that will happen in the end times continue to get worse and worse as time goes on. More unrest, more natural disasters, More hatred. We need to live every day as if this is the day Jesus will be returning to judge the world.
Therefore, stay awake, for you do not know on
what day your Lord is coming. Matthew 24:42
In Luke 19, Jesus gives the parable of the nobleman that went to a far country and told his 10 servants to “occupy till I come”. This is what Jesus wants us to do. He wants us to keep doing His work, to continue living our lives and staying busy until he returns. Sometimes it’s easy to get the feeling, “Why continue working and planning ahead if the end is near?” but that is not what we are to do. We are to labor in the vineyard until the Master returns. Living as He called us, too and watching daily for His return.
One of the biggest things our world is lacking right now, is Love. Fear is prevailing and in a selfie generation where everyone thinks of only themselves, love is becoming more and more of a rarity and people are lonely. Let’s make it our mission to show God’s love to a dark and hopeless world. Take time for others. slow down when shopping, (we sometimes underestimate what eye contact and a smile can do to brighten someone’s day) put your phone away and give someone your full attention. Listen without judgement. Show them you care. Give a helping hand. Tell them that Jesus can bring peace like they’ve never experienced before, and heal their hearts. Pray for them. Love them as Jesus loved.
Instead of focusing on all the possible conspiracies (whether true or false) that are raging about us, the possibilities of another world war, the fear of dying from covid, the fear of tyrannical governments, let’s lift our eyes to the giver of Peace and ask Him who we can bless today. Who can I love today, Lord? Is there a burden on someone’s heart that I can help lift? Is there someone searching for truth that is open to hearing about You? Who can I touch today? And when we shift our focus from ourselves to others, not only will the fear dissipate, but we can change the world slowly, one person at a time.
If you are watching this and don’t know Jesus personally, I invite you from the bottom of my heart to believe, reach out to Him in faith and He will answer. The devil’s time is short, and he knows it… and when this old world comes to an end, the most awful thing a human could ever experience is to be separated from God and experience the judgment on evil…
The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise,
as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with
you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
2 Peter 3:9
God loved the world so much that He made a way for sinful mankind to be able to stand in the presence of a righteous God, and that is through His pure and perfect son, who was willing to take the weight of the world’s sins, on his shoulders, and take our punishment for us so we can stand before holy God. All we need to do is to repent and turn from our sins, believe in Jesus and we will be saved. Praise God!
I want to end this with encouraging verses, and I hope you have a blessed day, and can overcome the wicked one and his desire to control you with fear.
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear,
but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous.
Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God
will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow
will worry about itself. Each day has enough
trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:34
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified
because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you;
he will never leave you nor forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6
“'For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you. Do not be afraid, for I myself will help you,' declares the Lord, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.” ~ Isaiah 41:13-14
“Fear of man will prove to be a snare,
but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe.” ~ Proverbs 29:25
“I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me.
He freed me from all my fears.” ~ Psalm 34:4
Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed
for I am your God: I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.