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‘… That Where I Am There You May Be Also’ – It Means More Than We Think

03/30/2011 32 comments

By ICA

John 14:1-3, “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”

Many of us have often assumed that when Jesus spoke of the “Father’s house” in John 14 He was referring to Heaven and was referring to the rapture of the Church when He promised that we would be received unto Him. As such, many have understood the text to infer that, as believers in Christ, we would all be whisked away to Heaven to live in a “mansion just over the hilltop” before the world is tossed into the abyss of a seven-year tribulation just prior to “Daniel’s 70th week.” But is this what Jesus was referring to when He says “My Father’s house”? And was Jesus telling us that He would take us to Heaven when He promised to come again to receive us unto Himself? Let’s take a moment to explore the text and compare Scripture with Scripture to determine if this is the picture that the Word of God paints for us, or if the Word paints a different picture for us altogether. In the end, I believe we may see that there is much more to these three verses than many of us have often assumed. Read more…

The Mark of the Beast – What Your Church May Not Be Telling You

03/22/2011 532 comments

By ICA

Revelation 13:16-17, “He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.”

A literal and physical mark, or something else?The most popular view today regarding the Mark of the Beast in Revelation 13 is that it is a literal mark physically placed in the forehead or right hand of those who worship Antichrist. Many teachers of Biblical eschatology will even refer to modern 21st century technology and point to some type of tattoo or implantable microchip under the skin when attempting to explain the mark.  But why?  What is in the text that leads many to believe that this mark must be physical when, after all, virtually every one of us would agree that while the book of Revelation speaks about the dragon, the Beast, the “Whore of Babylon” or the mark of Christ upon the elect etc. that these descriptions are not referring to a literal dragon, a literal animal, a literal prostitute or a literal seal of Christ? This is obviously figurative language pointing to something completely different.  On the other hand, so to speak, is there anything from Scripture to indicate for us that this mark need not be a physical mark at all, but could instead be something else entirely?

After careful consideration, I believe that the Mark of the Beast is very likely a spiritual mark just as the mark of Christ upon the elect is spiritual.  Since many will resist the suggestion that a figurative Beast will also have a figurative mark, despite the fact that there is nothing in the text stating that the Mark of the Beast must be physical, it is important to rightly divide the Word of God and study, from the whole of Scripture, the significance of the hand and head and how it often relates to man’s condition in the Biblical text. Read more…

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