Chang's mark of the beast is no big deal? Well, according to the tone of the characters in
Desecration, it certainly is not terribly important, or even terrible for that matter. The authors went to great lengths to persuade the reader that a Christian having the mark of the beast is nothing to get excited about.
On page 8 of
Desecration, Dr. Tsion Ben Judah received an email from Chang with the message, "I am despairing for my life." Now this is quite normal considering that Chang has the mark of the beast, and he knows what the Bible teaches is the fate of any who have it.
Tsion responds, "I am here, young brother. I know you must feel very much alone, but do not despair. The Lord is with you. He will give his angels charge over you. You have much to do as the point man for all the various activities of the Tribulation Force around the world. Yes, it is probably too much to ask of one so young, in years and in the faith, but we all must do what we have to. Tell me how I can encourage and help you so you can return to the task."
was fully aware that Chang had the mark of the beast (and had written about the consequences of being marked with the beast's mark on his internet website) but the authors had this character misunderstand the intent of Chang's desperate note! Tsion was
presented as being under the impression that Chang's worry was that he could not handle his assignment in the Tribulation Force.
Chang responded, "I want to kill myself."
Again, Tsion is portrayed as misunderstanding Chang's desperate statement, thus lessening the importance of Chang's very real peril in the minds of the readers. "Chang! Unless you have purposely jeopardized our mission, you need feel no such remorse. If you have made a mistake, reveal it so we can all adapt." Even after Chang made the statement, "I want to kill myself" Tsion, the intelligent Bible scholar and spiritual giant, still had no idea this had anything to do with Chang having the mark of the beast. This is absurd, but the authors are using Tsion's clueless state about the reason for Chang's distress to lessen the importance of Chang (in the readers' minds) being marked with Satan's mark.
Tsion continued to emphasize Chang's physical task: "But you have satellites to manipulate and monitor. You have records to keep in order, in case the enemy checks the various aliases and operations. We are nearly at zero hour, so do not lose heart. You can do this."
Chang responded about his his assignment and as a closing statement said, "I could end my life right now and not affect the Tribulation Force."
Tsion, again, had no idea what could possibly be causing such anguish in the heart of his "marked-with-the-beast" Christian brother: "Stop this talk, Chang! We need you. You must stay in position and adjust the databases depending upon what we encounter. Now, quickly, please, what is the problem?"
Three times so far
the authors de-emphasized the seriousness and gravity of a Christian having the mark of the beast!
Now it is David's (and Others') Turn To Play Down the Importance of Chang Being Marked With Satan's Mark!
On page 19 of
Desecration, we read, "David set his machine on the seat and stood outside, leaning in. The others stretched, then gathered to hear him read Tsion's copy of his back-and-forth with Chang."
"That does not sound so good," Abdullah said. "What to do?"
"I'd take a tone with that boy," Mac said.
"Just what I was thinking," David said.
So now we have three more Christian characters who are minimizing Chang's biblically correct fears about being marked with the beast's mark. The reader is seeing the characters agreeing that Chang needs to be rebuked because he is not sticking to temporal things and is instead focusing upon the evil mark of Satan in his body.
David wrote to Chang:
"You've got time to interrupt Dr. Ben Judah but not to check in with your immediate superior?"
Stop right here for a moment. This is yet another opportunity for the authors' to attach little importance to Chang's situation of being yoked to Antichrist through the mark of the beast. It was right for Chang to contact Dr. Ben-Judah first because he is considered to be the most godly and spiritual man in the Tribulation Force. The authors' portrayal of David being angry about this (and considers Chang's desperate email to Tsion an "interruption") in is one more way to dismiss the seriousness of Chang's predicament in the readers' minds.
I will continue to quote David: "You think this is a game, Chang?"
The authors are again endeavoring to persuade the reader that Chang's spiritual dilemma is really no dilemma at all, and that Chang's grief and suicidal feelings about having the mark that will put him in smoke and torment forever are merely childish games.
"What happened to the smart-aleck know-it-all who was going to handle all this in his sleep? Nobody begrudges you your second thoughts and spiritual angst, but you had better come to grips that you accepted this assignment."
Well, now we have David conceding that yes, perhaps Chang has the right to some second thoughts about whether having the mark would be advantageous, but since Chang accepted the assignment of working for the Tribulation Force, he had better stay focused on his assignment, which pertains to the physical survival of the group and stop this foolish preoccupation with his spiritual state of his soul.
David continued: "Bottom line, Chang, is that you don't have time for this right now."
What? Here is another time the authors are working hard through David's character to urge the reader to believe a Christian that is marked with the mark of Antichrist is insignificant in importance.
"Doing harm to yourself because you can't figure out why God might have let something happen would be the most royally selfish act you could conjure up." Now the reader is led to believe God let "something happen" (a Christian having the mark of the beast) and that because Chang is in mourning and godly fear, that this is the most selfish thing Chang could possibly do. The authors used the propaganda device of repetition to get across the LIE that the Christian character, Chang, should dismiss the fact that he has the mark of the beast, and just get on with life!
Next the story goes on to have David remind Chang of his responsibilities on the job. Now that the authors have worked hard through the character of David to convince the reader that a Christian having the mark of the beat is no big deal, they then use this same character to address Chang's "dual mark" problem.
I will pick up with the contents of the email where David is again referring to Chang's mark of the beast problem: "Hear me, Chang. Something you wrote to Dr. Ben-Judah reminded me of something you said to me about this whole dual mark thing. I know you didn't take it on purpose, though you wanted me to think you got used to it right away and see, as you called it, the 'upside.'"
My note: The "dual mark thing" does not exist in the Holy Bible and therefore does not exist, period. There is no such thing as taking the mark of the beast "not on purpose." Jesus said no man can serve two masters, and no man can be MARKED by two masters either.
"But it's not so easy, is it, when we're all so new at this and something doesn't jibe with what God seems to say about it?"
Did I read that right? What God SEEMS to say about being marked with the beast's mark? The Word of God is being made relative here (a New Age tactic), which is necessary so the reader will accept the whole dual-marking demonic lie! The Word of God is clear and not at all ambiguous about the mark of the beast and what the consequences are for anyone who receives this mark! See Rev. 14:10-11
"Dr. Ben Judah's the expert, and you've got him baffled, so I won't pretend to have an answer for you."
I want to stop and comment on the "Dr. Ben-Judah being the expert" line. The Holy Bible is the only expert that is infallible or without error. What the Holy Bible says stands far above any human authority, and it is the absolute and final authority. Once you read more of David's statements, you will see the authors are putting question marks into the readers' minds about the authority of the Holy Bible, the very Word of God.
"But obviously something's not right, and I don't blame you for wanting to find out how God sees you now."
My note: The Bible tells us how God sees Chang now, and he is damned for all eternity; we must never give more authority to man's explanations than to the inerrant Word of God. This is idolatry. Later on, the authors used the video taped coverage of Chang's "forced marking" to try to convince the readers to base their beliefs about the the mark of the beast on circumstances (situation ethics) rather than on the Word of God which will endure forever.
David continues: "There's no doubt in my mind that nothing can separate you from God and his love, but you're not going to have peace until you know for sure what really happened that morning."
My note: Please notice the implication here: not even having the mark of the beast can separate you from God and his love. Oh yes it can! What is in David's mind is not the final authority. The final authority about a Christian being marked with Antichrist's mark is written in the Holy Bible ONLY. Chang will not have peace until he finds out the circumstances under which he was marked with Satan's mark? Can you see how the authors are trying to get the readers to look at the circumstances and opinions of others to determine what is ultimately true regarding a Christian having the mark of the beast? This will result in spiritual destruction! Only the Bible is a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our paths. Later on in the book you will see that yes, the circumstances surrounding Chang being marked nullified the Bible's stand on the matter in the characters' minds. God forbid that it should have the same effect upon the minds of the readers!
David continues: "Now, again, let me be clear: "This is not your top priority. "Most important for you is to complete the tasks I listed above and make sure we're all safe and still undetected."
My note: Oh, boy. Here we go again. The authors are again hammering it into the readers' minds that the mark of the beast is no big deal, and that physical matters of survival take precedence over trivial spiritual matters such as a Christian having the mark of Antichrist.
At the bottom of page 22 we read, "David transmitted the message, then let Mac read it before they headed off for Mizpe Ramon. Mac nodded."
"How much time do you give him?" (This question is in reference to how long David thinks Chang will be able to continue in his job position for the Tribulation Force.)
David shrugged. "Not much, but I don't want to nuke the system because he's on a bathroom break either."
My note: David (supposedly a Christian character) called Chang's internal turmoil over being marked with the beast (which the Bible says results in eternal damnation in smoke and torment) a bathroom break! This reflects a contempt for things that are sacred, and is an affront to God. A Christian being marked with Satan's mark is an irreversible catastrophe NOT a non-event the way the authors are portraying it in DESECRATION.
The authors could not have gone any farther to discount the importance of the mark of the beast doctrine.
You must come out of fellowship with these imaginations that exalt themselves against the knowledge of God. Renounce these and any other thoughts that you remember or don't remember that gave place to the devil. God's Word commands Christians to "Neither give place to the devil." Eph. 4:27
I guarantee that if you entertain the notion that you may take the mark of the beast under ANY circumstance, you have given place to very real spiritual entities and they will in fact work with their supernatural powers on your mind.
How do you renounce the "hidden things of dishonesty" and the deceitful handling of the word of God that are placed in the pages of DESECRATION? You need to use your own sincere words of course (the Holy Spirit will help you) but here is a suggestion:
Dear Father in Heaven,
I am sorry I have been entertaining imaginations that have exalted themselves against the knowledge of You and Your precious Word. I repent of fellowshipping with doctrines of devils taught by those who handle your own Word deceitfully. I renounce thinking that a Christian can have the mark of the beast and all other thoughts and attitudes that are in rebellion to Your Holy Word and therefore to You. I ask you to remove any place the devil has in my mind and my life because of this sin.
Please renew my mind and sanctify and cleanse me with the washing of water by your precious Holy word.
Help me to continue in your word, that I might be your disciple indeed.
In Jesus' Name,
The Mark of the Beast Paradigm Shift
LEFT BEHIND Authors Answer Questions About Chang
Authors Say Forced Mark is a Very Credible Scenario
Can a True Christian Willfully Reject God and Take the Mark of the Beast?
It APPEARS Christians Will Not Have the Mark of the Beast?
The Left Behind Message Board and the Mark of the Beast Attitudinal Change Plan
Exposing False Doctrines in the Left Behind Series