Adrian Rogers - 666, The Mark of the Beast
Revelation chapter 13 and we're going to begin reading where we left off the last time we were together, and we left off with verse 10, and so now we begin in verse 11. In the first part of Revelation chapter 13 we were talking about the antichrist, the beast, the man of sin that comes up out of the sea, the sea representing nations in turmoil and anguish. And we saw this antichrist, this man of sin, Satan's superman, coming up out of the sea. But now in Revelation 13 verse 11 through 18, "And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth," this may also be translated the land, and many think it refers to the Holy Land.
"And he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them that dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from Heaven on earth in the sight of men. And he deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast, saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live. And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads, And that no man might buy or sell, save," and that means except, "he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast; for it is the number of a man; and his number is six hundred three-score and six".
And you know that is 666. Now Satan's superman, as I've said before, is the antichrist. The prefix, anti, means instead of and it means against. He's going to be against Christ by coming instead of Christ. Now in this chapter we have revealed to the unholy trinity. Now learn this about the devil. The devil has always mimicked God. Satan's burning ambition has always been to be like God. And so, if there is a holy Trinity: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, then there is also an unholy trinity. And in this chapter we're going to find the unholy trinity. The unholy trinity is the dragon, who is literally Satan, the beast, who is the antichrist, and the false prophet.
Now put in your margin Revelation chapter 16 verse 13, and you find these three delineated together where it says, "And I saw three unclean spirits, like frogs, come out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet". Now what we're talking about today is the false prophet. The dragon is anti-God, the Father. The beast is anti-Christ. And the false prophet is the anti-Holy Spirit. Now we're going to be talking about the false prophet, the anti-Holy Spirit. There is coming a man who will be the sinister minister of propaganda for the antichrist. This man will be unusual. He is going to come to unite the world into a common market, into a common government, and into a common faith. And he's going to do this on behalf of the antichrist. There're four things we'll learn today about this false prophet. Number one: He will be a servant of Satan. He will be a servant of Satan.
Look, if you will, in Revelation 13 verses 11 and 12, "And I beheld another beast coming out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon". Now lambs don't have horns, and so you know there's something wrong right here; he has two horns like a lamb. And he might look like a lamb, but he's got dragon breath. He speaks like a dragon. "And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him". Who's the first beast? The antichrist. "And causeth the earth and them that dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed". Now this false prophet, this anti Holy Spirit, is going to be a master of deception, a master of camouflage. He seems to appear as a harmless lamb. But John says, "Look for the horns, smell his breath". He speaks as a dragon. And the dragon, of course, is who? The devil. And what does the devil do? He's the master liar.
Now you talk about all the spin masters we've seen in the last five or eight years on television. This will be the quintessential spin master. He will speak as the dragon. Let me tell you how Jesus described the dragon in John chapter 8 and verse 44 when He was speaking to the unsaved Pharisees. He said, "You are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there's no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own; for he is a liar, and the father of it". Every time you tell a lie you're acting like the devil. The devil is the master liar. And so this lamb that speaks as a dragon will be an incredibly clever liar. Put in your margin Second Thessalonians chapter 2 verse 11, "For this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie," talking about people in The Great Tribulation.
These are people who refuse the truth. "And God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie". Actually, in the Greek it says, "They should believe the lie". What is the lie? I think he's going to have to explain the disappearance of all of us. I believe, perhaps, he will say it was the judgment of God upon us, that God took us out of the way because we were inhibiting world peace. Jesus spoke of the antichrist and the false prophet in these verses in Matthew 24 verse 24, "For there shall arise false christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch that, if it were possible, they should deceive the very elect".
This false prophet will be a master communicator. He will control the media. He will bend and distort the truth, and he will tell such clever lies, and remember this: every good lie has some truth in it. A good lie sounds the most like the truth. This sinister minister of propaganda will sound so sensible, so persuasive. He will tell people just what sinful hearts want to believe and what deceived minds will believe. And also, he is going to be a great executive. He's going to be the CEO of Satan and Sons, Incorporated. And he's going to have this verbal skill. He is going to speak as the devil himself. And he will make you believe that up is down, bad is good, black is white, and he will have all deceivableness of unrighteousness, this false prophet. Put down in your margin Second John chapter 1 and verse 7, John, who wrote the Book of the Revelation, also said, "For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist".
Now what John is saying 2000 years ago there were antichrists on earth, so don't think that there's only one antichrist. There is coming the ultimate antichrist. But there have always been antichrists who deceive. And so, the first thing I want you to learn about this false spirit, this anti Holy Spirit, he will be a servant of Satan. Remember again, it says that he spake as a dragon and he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him. And who gave the first beast power? Well, the devil himself. Now here's the second thing I want you to learn about this anti-Holy Spirit. Not only will he be one who will come as a servant of Satan, but he will be a worker of worship. Now the devil's not against religion. The devil is in religion up to his ears. Now look in Revelation 13 verse 12, "And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed".
Now what does the Holy Spirit of God cause us to do? To worship the Lamb of God. Well, then, what would you expect the anti-spirit to do? Cause people to worship the beast. Now learn this about the devil. The devil, as I've said, is not against religion. The devil's unholy desire has always been to be worshipped since he became the devil. Put these verses in your margin: Isaiah chapter 14, verses 12 through 14. God is speaking directly to Lucifier, and here's what He says, "How art thou fallen from Heaven, O Lucifier, son of the morning! How art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, 'I will ascend into Heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north, I will ascend above the heights of the clouds,'" now notice this next phrase, "'I will be like the Most High.'"
That was the filthy, burning ambition of Satan; to be like the Most High, to be his own god. And he's always wanted to be worshipped. When he tempted the Lord Jesus Christ, he tried to tempt Jesus to worship him. Can you imagine the unmitigated gall and audacity to try to tempt the Son of God to worship him? But put this down in your margin, Luke 4 verses 5 through 8, "And the devil, taking Him up into an high mountain, showed unto Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said unto Him, 'All this power will I give Thee, and the glory of them; for that is delivered unto me.'" And it was. Adam delivered it to Satan. "'And to whomsoever I will give it. If Thou, therefore, wilt worship me, all shall be Thine". "Jesus, bow down and worship me". The gall. I say, the unmitigated gall of Satan to try to tempt the Lord Jesus Christ to worship him. "And Jesus answered, and said unto him, 'Get thee behind Me, Satan; for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord, thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve.'"
So he's going to be a worker of worship. Learn this about the devil. He doesn't want casualties; he wants converts. And as the unholy spirit, the false prophet will cause the world to worship the beast. Now I don't know whether you've realized it or not, but as the apostle John says in First John chapter 4 verse 3, "The spirit of antichrist is already in the world". Have you noticed that we're heading quickly toward a one-world religion? Have you seen that? Notice it says here in Revelation 13:12 that, "He causeth all them which dwell on the earth to worship the first beast". Now, people don't like folks like you. I hate to tell you that. But you're not popular if you belong to a Bible-believing church.
Now we may feel secure here in our little enclave, but, folks, you're looked upon as the enemy. When you say that there's a fixed standard of right and wrong, when you say there's only one way to Heaven and that is by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and Jesus Christ is the only Savior, and all other religions are false, the world will come down on you like a hammer, did you know that? The world says, "Look, you people are trouble makers". And if you will read, there's something very subtle happening in the world today. Conservative, Bible-believing Christians are now being equated with the Taliban. Now here's the way they do it. They say, "All right. These extreme Muslims over here in the Taliban, they are the fundamentalists. So they're fundamentalists; these people are fundamentalists, so they're all the same breed of cats. And so we have to get rid of these fundamentalists".
Notice how they frame the issues. Ah, for example. Women's' rights. Who would be against women's' rights? Death with dignity. Who would be against death with dignity? Sexual freedom. Who would be against sexual freedom? Religious tolerance. Who would be against religious tolerance? Those things sound so good as they frame the issues, but what do they really mean? Women's' rights. Murdering babies, that's what they mean Death with dignity. Eliminating the elderly, that's what they mean. Sexual freedom. They mean perversion, sodomy, all kinds of bizarre and weird aberrations. Religious tolerance. That is, nobody can say there's one way to Heaven. And we're moving that way. Bible-believing Christians have been criticized for A: saying that Islam is a false religion and that Allah is not the true god. There is one God and He is Yahweh, Jehovah, the Triune God of the Bible. I believe that. I don't apologize for saying that. I believe that with all of my heart.
Now, it's amazing how the left is attacking Christians. In an editorial in World Magazine, Gene Veith had said something very interesting. Listen to this, "The left is attacking Christians for two contradictory reasons: both for being too much like Islam and refusing to agree with Islam". Think of that. Listen to it again. "The left is attacking Christians for two contradictory reasons: both for being too much like Islam". I would be attacked today for saying there's only one way to Heaven and that's Jesus Christ. But on the other hand they say that we should agree with these. We all have to get along. To preach the exclusiveness of Jesus Christ today is to be called a hatemonger.
Mikhail Gorbachev. Do you remember him? The former President of the former Soviet Union. He said in a speech, quote, "The victims of the September 11th attack on the United States will not have died in vain if the world leaders use the crisis to create a new world order. These victims will not be in vain if the world reflects and looks at itself in the mirror," Gorbachev told a news conference in Madrid where he was attending a conference. And then, again, he goes on to say, "If we act as we did after September the 11th, uniting efforts of fighting against terrorism, if we maintain the coalition, we will not only prevent a new cold war, but we could get a new world order that is so desirable for all of us". Ah, Gorby, you can leave me out of that. It's desirable to me. But I'm telling you that this antichrist will come. All that they say will sound so believable, so necessary, so logical. Jesus said, "If it were possible, he would deceive the very elect".
Now you hear a lot about the New Age, about the new world leader who's going to come, "To the Christians, he will be the Second Coming of Christ; to the Jews, the Messiah; the Imam Mode to the Muslims; Krishna to the Hindus; and to the Buddhists he will be the fifth Buddha". So they're looking for this man who's going to come, who's just going to blend everything together, homogenize everything, and cause the world to worship the beast with a one-world religion. G.K. Chesterson was correct when he said, "When people cease to believing in the biblical God, they do not start believing in nothing; they start believing in everything".
Now the Muslims are working to lower the standard for Christians so that we want to be more tolerant. And tolerance is a good word, rightly understood. But I want you to listen to a Muslim booklet printed by the Muslim Christian Alliance, called the Muslim Christian Alliance, published in Istanbul, Turkey. And it's working toward an alliance between Muslims and Christians. Here's what it says. Listen to it, "Moreover, the saying of the prophet Mohammad states that in the end of time true, pious, devout Christians will unite with Muslims to put a great fight together against the common threat, atheism. For the time being, true, devout Muslims must unite not only with their co-religionists, colleagues, and fellow brothers, but with true Christians, with true Christian believers by skipping any dispute, since they have to unite urgently against the common enemy".
Now he's saying, "Look Muslims, forget the differences between Christians and Muslims. Let's unite against atheism". But now, at the end of this memo, the same memo, I want you to hear the game plan, the end game plan, and I'm quoting. "Eventually, Christianity will be purified and will get rid of all superstitions and misbeliefs and will unite with the true Islamic religion and will be, in a way, transformed into Islam. And by adopting guidance to the Koran, the Christian community will become a follower of Islam, and Islamic religion will be the leader position. The true religion of Islam will gain great power as a result of that unification".
Do you see what's happening? They say, "Now we'll get Christians and Muslims together to fight against atheism. And then the Islamic faith will take over Christianity and then there will be that true faith. And so, you don't have any longer Christianity or Islam. What you have is Chrislam. That's where we're headed". Now listen. I'm telling you the false prophet will be a servant of Satan. He will be a worker of worship. Now here's the third thing. He will be a master of miracles. He will be a master of miracles.
Beginning now in Revelation 13 verse 13 to 15, "And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from Heaven on the earth in the sight of men. And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast, saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live. And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed". Now learn this. The devil has dark, demonic power to do miracles, and he is going to give that power both to the beast and to the false prophet. Now the Bible calls these miracles lying wonders. They're deceitful in their power and in their purpose.
Again, I remind you of the Scripture there in Second Thessalonians, the second chapter, the ninth verse, "Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan, with all power and signs and lying wonders". I hope you are wise enough to know what you see with your eyes may not necessarily be true. The devil's going to have a number of tricks in his bag. He's going to have devilish magic and he will have supernatural power. For example, there's the celestial fire. Look in Revelation 13 verse 13. And it says that he has power to, "He maketh fire come down from Heaven on the earth in the sight of men". Well, what did Elijah do? Elijah called down fire from Heaven.
Second Kings 1 verse 10, "And Elijah answered and said unto the captain of fifty, 'If I be a man of God, then let fire come down from Heaven, and consume thee and thy fifty.' And there came down fire from Heaven, and consumed him and his fifty". And then there's going to be the image. Well, what is the image going to be? Again, look in Revelation 13 verses 14 and 15 of this same chapter. "And he deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast, saying unto them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by the sword, and did live. And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed".
What is this? I don't know. It may be the ultimate computer that is wedded to the television set in a form of virtual reality. I don't know. These things that seemed so far-fetched a long time ago don't seem far-fetched today. So if he is going to be a master of miracles, how are we going to be able to tell what is right or what is wrong? May I give you three simple, little tests? As you see these miracle workers, and there will be more and more of them in the last days. And the spirit of antichrist is already in the world. And the apostle John said in First John chapter 4 and verse 1, "Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try," or test, "the spirits whether they be of God".
First of all, you ask yourself does this person confess that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh, this socalled miracle worker? If he doesn't confess that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh, he is not of God; it is the spirit of antichrist. Put down Second John chapter 1 verse 7 that tells you that. Number two: Does the message, prophecy, or sign, or miracle, does it glorify Jesus Christ? Jesus said of the Holy Spirit in John chapter 16 verses 13 and following, "Howbeit, when the Spirit of truth is come, he will guide you into all truth; for he shall not speak of himself, but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak; and he shall show you things to come. He shall glorify Me".
Now if a man claims to be a preacher and he doesn't glorify Jesus, you can put it down big, plain, and straight; he's not filled with the Holy Spirit. The ministry of the Holy Spirit is to glorify Christ. Now, again, and here's the third test. You ask yourself does the person performing the sign or giving the prophecy teach anything that violates the clear teachings of the Word of God? I'm going to read an extended passage of Scripture to you, but I want you to listen carefully. Deuteronomy chapter 13, beginning in verse 1 through to verse 5, "If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, And the sign or wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, 'Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them,' Thou shalt not harken unto the words of that prophet".
That is, if a man does a miracle but then leads you away from what you know to be the truth, don't listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams. "For the Lord your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul". God will allow these false miracle workers to come, according to this Scripture, to test you. "Ye shall walk after the Lord your God, and fear Him, and keep His commandments, and obey His voice, and ye shall serve Him, and cleave unto Him. And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death, because he hath spoken to turn you away from the Lord your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the Lord thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee".
Now that Scripture says even if you see a miracle with your own eyes, if it doesn't line up with the Word of God, reject it. Now here's the fourth and final thing about this false prophet I want you to learn today. He is going to be a controller of commerce. He's going to be a controller of commerce. Begin in Revelation 13 verse 16 to 18, "And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads, And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast; for it is the number of a man; and his number is six hundred three-score and six".
Now this anti-Holy Spirit is going to turn the world into a vast concentration camp with all of the inmates numbered, and everyone will have to receive a mark if they're going to have any commerce. It will be the brand of hell. Now, again, when we believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, we're sealed by the Spirit. If we are in the tribulation when the false holy spirit is here, we will not be sealed with the spirit; we'll be branded by the beast. Now the number is the number of a man. I've already told you six is the number of a man. Man's created on the sixth day. Seven is perfection. Man is sinful. He's not a seven. He's a six. You have 666, three sixes, that is man pretending to be God. That's the mark of the beast.
Now, we are headed toward a cashless society, whether you believe in Bible prophecy or not. If you can read, if you can simply read, you know that we're headed toward a cashless society. And it's going to seem so reasonable, so necessary, so simple, and so efficient. People will receive some encoded mark and they will be able to buy and sell, and it's going to be fast. There'll be no cheating. There'll be no books to balance. And this technology is already on hand and already being used. Listen to this. "Digital Angel represents the first ever combination of advanced bio-sensor technology and web-enabled wireless telecommunications linked to global positioning systems, GPS, by utilizing advanced bio-sensor capabilities, Digital Angel will be able to monitor key body functions, such as temperature and pulse, and transmit that data, along with accurate location information, to a ground station or monitoring facility. Applied digital solutions is exploring a wide range of potential applications for Digital Angel, including monitoring the location and medical condition of at-risk patients".
That is, that your doctor can go to a screen and tell exactly where you are, what your heart rate is, what your temperature is, or whatever. "Locating lost or missing individuals". A missing child, we know exactly where that child is. "Locating mission or, missing or stolen household pets, monitoring the location of certain parolees". If you're paroled, they'll know exactly where you are. "Managing livestock and other farm-related animals. Pinpointing the location of valuable, stolen properties. Managing the commodities supply chain. Preventing the unauthorized use of firearms". That's interesting, isn't it? "And providing a tamper proof means of identification for enhanced e-commerce security. And another thing is the veri-chip, which has been approved now by the FDA. It's a computer chip. It, they can put it in under your skin with a syringe that's smaller than an insulin syringe and monitor wherever you are, whatever you do".
Now I wish I had more time to talk to you about that. And maybe we'll spend some more time. But all clichés don't make a lot of sense, but one I've read that really is so powerful; the more machines act like men, the more men will act like machines. Now this is coming, folks. And this antiholy spirit is going to be a servant of Satan. He is going to be a worker of worship. He's going to be a master of miracles. And he's going to be a controller of commerce.
Here's something interesting. With this I'll close. If you were to take just our English alphabet and let the first letter, the first letter equal 6. So A represents 6. And then just add 6 more, so the next letter, B, represents 12; C represents 18, and so forth, all the way through, and number all the letters in our alphabet in increments of 6. And then spell out the word computer. C would be 18; O would be 90; M would be 78; P would be 96; U would be 126; T would be 120; E would be 30; and R would be 108. Now if you add up all those numbers, they come out to 666. Who figures this stuff out? How can people come up with this stuff? I'm not trying to say that's what it is. But is it not interesting, this world that we live in. Folks, listen to me. What we see happening today sounds, in some ways, like a fairy tale, but it is not. What we see happening today, everything is fitting into the sockets of prophecy, and that tells me that Jesus Christ is at the door.
Would you stand with your heads bowed? Just stand right now with your heads bowed. Would you begin to pray for those who may not know the Lord Jesus Christ! Would you just pray, "Lord, if this person is not saved, or that person is not saved, Holy Spirit of God, speak to that person". And, precious friend, if today you're without the Lord Jesus Christ, I want you to be saved. And God wants to save you. And the sand of time is running out. Even if Jesus were not to come for 150 years, you're only a heartbeat away from hell if you don't know the Lord Jesus. But God wants to save you, and He loves you. Jesus Christ died on the cross and paid your sin debt with His blood on the cross. Your sins have been paid for. That does you no good. It only increases your judgment unless you repent of your sin and trust Christ. Would you like to do that? Would you pray a prayer like this:
Dear God, I know that You love me. I know that You want to save me. Jesus, You died to save me and promised to save me if I would trust You. I do trust You. Right now with all of my heart I receive You into my life. Come into my life. Forgive my sin. Cleanse me. Save me, Lord Jesus.
Did you ask Him? Why not ask Him? "Save me, Lord Jesus". Be sincere. "Save me, Lord Jesus". Did you ask Him? Then thank Him for doing it. Say:
Thank You, Lord Jesus, for saving me. I don't look for a sign. I don't ask for a feeling. I stand on Your Word. You cannot lie. Now, Lord Jesus, give me the courage today to make it publish. In Your name I pray. Amen.