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The Mark of the Beast and the Seal of God

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This paper was a response to someone who asked about the mark of the beast. But she didn’t ask about the seal of God. Many don’t consider that subject, because they think the seal of God is surely theirs, yet they don’t even know what it is. But when they learn what the seal of God is, they’ll know what the mark of the beast is.

When Moses was forty, it was in his heart to help his people, Israel. But in his own strength, he failed and had to flee for his life. For forty years he was in a wilderness, both physical and spiritual.

Then God appeared to him and sent him to Egypt to deliver Israel. When Moses got there, he was countered by Pharaoh’s magicians. They were able to copy the first miracles God enabled Moses to do. They had power. Why? Because they had the mark of the beast, but Moses overcame because he had the seal of God.

The seal of God is the death sentence. It is the crucifying factor in one’s life. It is the only sure mark of distinction between good and evil, between children of God and the inhabiters of the earth, between those who are God’s and those who are not.

Both light and darkness can do great works. Both perform miracles, call fire down from heaven, and do wonders (Job 1:16; 2 Thessalonians 2:9-10; Revelation 13:13-14). But the power of darkness is limited. Moses prevailed over the magicians of Pharaoh’s court, because he had the power of God. How did he receive that power? He died.

His ambitions had been wiped out beyond hope. The work he tried to do in his own strength had failed long ago. Yet, though his power was sown in corruption, it was raised in incorruption; it was sown in weakness and defeat, and raised in power and victory (1 Corinthians 15:42-43, 53-55). It was the work of God in Moses, just as was the crucifixion, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, as had been signified by Jonah who also “died,” was “buried,” and after three days, was “brought to life.” Death and resurrection is the sign of the Son of man, the sign of true life; it is the seal of God.

The apostle Paul said he determined to know nothing but Christ crucified (1 Corinthians 2:2). He knew the secret of God, because he had the seal of God on his forehead. He had the death sentence on himself (Romans 6:4,10-11; 2 Corinthians 1:9). That is the seal of God. That is the mark of a true servant of the Lord. It is the mark of a saint in maturity. It is Christ formed in us (Galatians 4:19).

As grain sown in the ground sprouts and grows, producing more grain, so in the fullness of time, we are resurrected in power and glory with Christ to serve Him in His chosen work (Galatians 2:20). When God applies the seal to us, the world and the carnal mind see it as failure, falsehood, defeat, and humiliation. Christ was killed – He was humiliated and that, publicly. But the crucifixion was the very way of victory; His death was the judgment and salvation of the world.

So it is for all those who are His. They must all suffer death publicly, obediently, quietly, and humbly, and they must be patient for the sure and coming resurrection. As with the Head, so with the Body and each member thereof. Otherwise, we are not His.

As members of the Body of Christ, we have no choice but to die. But knowing the truth helps us through our wilderness, through our death, through the receipt of the seal of God on our foreheads, which is a painful experience. It would be far easier to be literally branded on the forehead with an intensely hot iron.

Once death has come upon the soul called by God to be His, there is nothing more that can hurt him or be done to him. No longer does he care what others may think or do. He is a dead man.

“Him who overcomes I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he will go out no more. And I will write upon him the Name of My God, and the Name of the City of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of Heaven from My God, and My New Name” (Revelation 3:12 MKJV).

He recognizes that there is no power but of God. He knows that no matter how powerful the enemy may be, he has nothing to fear. And it doesn’t matter if the enemy prevails for a time. He knows that all is in God’s hands.

Ephesians 2:4-7 MKJV
(4) But God, Who is rich in mercy, for His great love with which He loved us
(5) (even when we were dead in sins) has made us alive together with Christ (by grace you are saved),
(6) and has raised us up together and made us sit together in the heavenlies in Christ Jesus,
(7) so that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.

Though the flesh still agonizes and frets and fears (Romans 7:18), the inner man has come to a peace and a stillness that prevails.

Moses was a brash and energetic man at forty. He was self-confident. He thought to deliver the children of Israel in his own strength. From his mother’s womb, it was in his heart to redeem Israel. Little did he know at the time that he was only seed grain and not harvest grain. Little did he know that he had still to be planted, humiliated, and broken. Little did he know he was relying on bestial power, the power of the man of sin, the first Adam, who has been under the power and domain of the subtle beast, the serpent of Eden.

We see that the seal of God is the death sentence that breaks one. So what is the mark of the beast? It is the exaltation of the flesh, the puffing up of a man, making him bold and brash, enabling him to copy the works of God as did Jannes and Jambres. It is the pride and energy of the flesh that all these evangelists and preachers have on TV and radio, claiming to be serving God.

Whom do they deceive? Only the undead. They deceive those who have chosen to live, those who have shrunk away from denying themselves and taking up the cross to follow the Lord. They deceive those who also have accepted the mark of the beast, which empowers them to do things that please men.

“They are blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch” (Matthew 15:14 MKJV).

The religious have their reward; they live; they flourish; they laugh… for now. In all these things they display the mark of the beast. They speak with power and are accepted of the world. They are permitted to give and receive among themselves, to buy and sell. The beast has granted them that privilege with his mark. And Jesus said:

“But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation. Woe to you who are full now, for you shall be hungry. Woe to you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep. Woe to you, when all people speak well of you, for so their fathers did to the false prophets” (Luke 6:24-26 ESV).

In all these things, when they think they are proving to be God’s, they are proving and demonstrating to those who have eyes to see that they are the beast’s. And they receive power to do great things in the Name of Jesus Christ:

2 Corinthians 11:13-15 MKJV
(13) For such ones are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.
(14) Did not even Satan marvelously transform himself into an angel of light?
(15) Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves as ministers of righteousness, whose end shall be according to their works.

They are impudent, presumptuous, proud, haughty, fat-eyed, full-bellied, self-satisfied, lovers of themselves, covetous, boasters, blasphemous, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, false accusers, unruly in their lusts, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God, ever learning and never coming to a knowledge of the truth (the Lord Jesus Christ), having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof. From such, turn away! (2 Timothy 3:1-5)

These always resist the truth, even as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith. But they shall proceed no further for, it is written, their folly shall be manifest unto all men. Evil men shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived (2 Timothy 3:8-9, 13).

That is the lot of all those who profess Christ, but who have nothing to do with Him.

The Mark of the Beast Is the Mark on Cain

Genesis 4:8-15 ESV
(8) Cain spoke to Abel his brother. And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel and killed him.
(9) Then the LORD said to Cain, “Where is Abel your brother?” He said, “I do not know; am I my brother’s keeper?”
(10) And the LORD said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood is crying to me from the ground.
(11) And now you are cursed from the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand.
(12) When you work the ground, it shall no longer yield to you its strength. You shall be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth.”
(13) Cain said to the LORD, “My punishment is greater than I can bear.
(14) Behold, you have driven me today away from the ground, and from your face I shall be hidden. I shall be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.”
(15) Then the LORD said to him, “Not so! If anyone kills Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold.” And the LORD put a mark on Cain, lest any who found him should attack him.

What is that mark God put on Cain?

Brother John tells us this of Cain: “We should not be like Cain, who was of the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own deeds were evil and his brother’s righteous” (1 John 3:12 ESV).

Who is the evil one? Is it not the subtle beast God created in Eden, who seduced Eve? In refusing God’s counsel of repentance, sin took over and Cain became servant to the evil one. But God put a mark on Cain. That mark is the love people put on, act out, pretend and presume to have in religious circles in the Name of God, affecting piety.

With false love is power, great power. It is impressive: It moves and motivates, flatters, comforts, pampers, bribes, and cajoles. It wins one to its practitioner’s point of view with its gentle, caring influence.

Where did Cain get the power and influence to build a city (a gathering of people) after leaving the presence of the Lord?

“Then Cain went away from the presence of the LORD and settled in the land of Nod, east of Eden. Cain knew his wife, and she conceived and bore Enoch. When he built a city, he called the name of the city after the name of his son, Enoch” (Genesis 4:16-17 ESV).

Cain built his city with his loving and especially friendly smiles, kisses, soft words, favors, hugs, caresses, and handshakes. You wouldn’t expect that from a murderer, would you? Cain became expert in public relations, in diplomacy, in uniting people. He went out and gathered together people in unity with… his love. And that was his protection from those who might try to punish him or do him harm.

Are all those things Cain does wrong in themselves? Not at all! We are encouraged to be friendly, and by nature, saints are. We’re encouraged to give holy kisses, to embrace, bear one another’s burdens, give, encourage, be kind and gentle, to help one another in any way we’re given to help. The difference with those who are the Lord’s is they worship Him in spirit and truth, and they speak the truth, at the cost of being received of men, if necessary – and it always is, for men hate to hear the truth. So what we’re talking about is the counterfeit versus the real, that which is real versus that which appears to be real.

With that counterfeit love, Cain had great power with men. With this mark, he was able to imitate the true love and worship of the children of God and thus have security from them. Indeed, he would be popular with people.

Thus, Jude wrote of those with the mark of the beast:

“These are blemishes in your love feasts, as they feast with you without fear, looking after themselves; waterless clouds, swept along by winds; fruitless trees in late autumn, twice dead, uprooted; wild waves of the sea, casting up the foam of their own shame; wandering stars, for whom the gloom of utter darkness has been reserved forever” (Jude 1:12-13 ESV).

Would God cause Cain to be a counterfeit Christian? Why not?

God sends delusion:

2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 ESV
(9) The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders,
(10) and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.
(11) Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false,
(12) in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

And lying spirits:

1 Kings 22:19-23 ESV
(19) And Micaiah said, “Therefore hear the word of the LORD: I saw the LORD sitting on His throne, and all the host of heaven standing beside Him on His right hand and on His left;
(20) and the LORD said, ‘Who will entice Ahab, that he may go up and fall at Ramoth-gilead?’ And one said one thing, and another said another.
(21) Then a spirit came forward and stood before the LORD, saying, ‘I will entice him.’
(22) And the LORD said to him, ‘By what means?’ And he said, ‘I will go out, and will be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets.’ And He said, ‘You are to entice him, and you shall succeed; go out and do so.’
(23) Now therefore behold, the LORD has put a lying spirit in the mouth of all these your prophets; the LORD has declared disaster for you.”

“But,” you may object, “isn’t it a beast that causes all to receive the mark?” Yes, as ordained from above.

“Then Pilate said to Him, ‘Do You not speak to me? Do You not know that I have authority to crucify You, and I have authority to release You?’ Jesus answered, ‘You could have no authority against Me unless it were given to you from above’” (John 19:10-11 MKJV).

As God commissioned the spirit to go forth lying and deceiving Ahab by false prophets, and as God gave Satan direction to torment Job (Job 1 and 2), so the beast was granted from above to place a mark on all he would.

Revelation 13:4-8 ESV
(4) And they worshiped the dragon, for he had given his authority to the beast, and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast, and who can fight against it?”
(5) And the beast was given a mouth uttering haughty and blasphemous words, and it was allowed to exercise authority for forty-two months.
(6) It opened its mouth to utter blasphemies against God, blaspheming His Name and His dwelling, that is, those who dwell in heaven.
(7) Also it was allowed to make war on the saints and to conquer them. And authority was given it over every tribe and people and language and nation,
(8) and all who dwell on earth will worship it, everyone whose name has not been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb that was slain.

Revelation 13:11-17 ESV
(11) Then I saw another beast rising out of the earth. It had two horns like a lamb and it spoke like a dragon.
(12) It exercises all the authority of the first beast in its presence, and makes the earth and its inhabitants worship the first beast, whose mortal wound was healed.
(13) It performs great signs, even making fire come down from heaven to earth in front of people,
(14) and by the signs that it is allowed to work in the presence of the beast it deceives those who dwell on earth, telling them to make an image for the beast that was wounded by the sword and yet lived.
(15) And it was allowed to give breath to the image of the beast, so that the image of the beast might even speak and might cause those who would not worship the image of the beast to be slain.
(16) Also it causes all, both small and great, both rich and poor, both free and slave, to be marked on the right hand or the forehead,
(17) so that no one can buy or sell unless he has the mark, that is, the name of the beast or the number of its name.

And what a lovely, powerful mark it is! It is strong delusion, so strong that even the elect might be deceived:

“For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect” (Matthew 24:24 ESV).

The mark of the beast is that mark upon Cain (read False Love – The Mark of Cain). It is the counterfeit love and carnal power to impress, inspire, influence, and motivate mankind to do one’s bidding.

Cain was protected and, at the same time, given to practise the reign and power of the usurper of all mankind. God established this ability and commission with Cain not just for Cain’s sake, but for the saints’ sakes. The battle is set in array, with the forces of good and evil locked in conflict to the death with one another. Cain’s seed was established to be in opposition to the saints of God. But praise God, we have already been granted the victory through Jesus Christ our Lord!

The exercise of faith in this battle would develop the saints to maturity, their full potential as sons of God. Upon overcoming within, the sons of God would be manifest to conquer the enemy on behalf of the rest of mankind, to redeem and bring, in the fullness of ages, all men into the Kingdom of their Father and Redeemer.

The sons of the evil one have retained their lives in order to serve themselves and their own kind, receiving the mark from their mentors and forbearers, by the authority of God. This is the mark and power of Satan, the evil one, the serpent, the subtle beast, the destroyer, the dragon, the one who has had authority throughout the ages to exercise dominion over the sons of men, even the sons of God. To break this power and dominion, man must die. It’s the only way. Fire must be fought with fire. Death must be dealt a death blow, the first death countered by the second. To be reunited with the Father, we must die with the Son, for only by the Son, the One and Only Mediator among men, can we be redeemed and restored to Eden and fellowship with God.

There is no life but by death in Christ. There is nothing but death and Hell for us if we choose to live and prevail in our works. We may have worldly success, praise of men, and other earthly benefits, but we won’t have the power, favor, and glory of God.

Paul’s life was different from those of the sons of Satan. His was one of afflictions, persecutions, proper manner of life, faith, longsuffering, charity, and patience. And he says that all who live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution (2 Timothy 3:10-12).

To the sinner, black is white, and white is black; light is darkness, and darkness is light. While to the saint, right is might, to the man of the world, might is right. To the carnal man, the seal of God appears as the mark of the beast, and the mark of the beast appears as the seal of God.

As Paul said:

“For we are to God a sweet savor of Christ, in those being saved, and in those being lost; to the one we are the savor of death to death, and to the other we are the savor of life to life. And who is sufficient for these things?” (2 Corinthians 2:15-16 MKJV)

In other words, who can know or understand these things?

“And He said, Go, Daniel! For the words are closed up and sealed until the end-time. Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried. But the wicked shall do wickedly. And none of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand” (Daniel 12:9-10 MKJV).

Victor Hafichuk

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