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Unique ID In India Causes 'Fear of the Beast' 725

bhagwad writes "India's attempts to tag everyone with an ID number has run into a roadblock is some Christian villages. Apparently the villagers fear they will be associated with the devil since according to the Bible, everyone having the 'mark of the beast' will go to hell. These people are not afraid of punishment. They relish this opportunity to prove their faith because the Bible also proclaims that they will be persecuted."
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Unique ID In India Causes 'Fear of the Beast'

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  • Two things... (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 01, 2010 @01:43PM (#32760050)
    As a long-time minister I can tell you two things that are commonly misinterpreted by the nominal Christian crowd.

    1. Revelation is almost entirely using symbolic language (it says so in the first paragraph).

    2. Nearly everyone goes to hell. Hell is just the state of being dead, nothing more. Even Jesus is spoken of as being in 'hell' when he died.

    The 'mark of the beast; is not a literal, physical mark. Rather, it is some kind of behavior or trait associating one with the Devils machinations (i.e. participating (or tacitly approving of) in genocide)
  • by mangu ( 126918 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @01:56PM (#32760330)

    I had a sysadmin who refused to chmod files to 666 because it was the number of the beast

    Anyhow, you have to agree that he was right, for the wrong reason. Giving read/write permissions to everybody is the number of the stupid, not the number of the beast.

  • Re:That's silly... (Score:5, Informative)

    by TheVelvetFlamebait ( 986083 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @02:03PM (#32760470) Journal

    The parent isn't kidding. The official user number of Anonymous Coward is 666. Log in and click here for proof: []

  • Re:Two things... (Score:3, Informative)

    by dkleinsc ( 563838 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @02:14PM (#32760668) Homepage

    The day I wish I had mod points for an AC - Hell must be frozen over!

    But seriously, that particular (mis)interpretation of the Bible, and Revelation in particular, can easily be traced to John Nelson Darby and Cyrus Scofield. If you want to really understand Christian fundamentalist nuttiness in the US, the Scofield Reference Bible is your source.

  • by CannonballHead ( 842625 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @03:27PM (#32762114)

    Try wikipedia? []

  • by hierofalcon ( 1233282 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @03:30PM (#32762156)

    I'll save the AC the trouble...

    14:9-11 And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.

    It isn't just the mark. It is the worship of the beast as opposed to God that is the primary offense, and I think that the general assumption is that getting the mark will require worship of the beast at least at the time of receiving the mark - hence don't get the mark if you want to avoid hell. The choice will be execution (for failure to worship the beast) or receiving the mark and worshiping the beast. The angels are sent throughout the earth speaking from the sky in each person's native language warning about what is to come and the consequences. The choice will be clear.

    Remember that Salvation is not a once and forever thing. You have to choose to keep doing right and stop doing what the Bible or the Holy Spirit tells you is wrong. Worshiping Satan would be a fail, regardless of whether it is done today or at the time of the mark of the beast. God's grace is big. I'm not sure how big His net of mercy is with us today when we have accepted Christ as Savior and still go on failing Him. I believe it extends to some point. But He sends His angels out to specifically say He has had enough and this limit will not be covered by His grace if passed.

    Those who have accepted Christ as Savior and repented of sin will be caught up with Jesus in the sky long before this point in time, so there is no risk of their salvation being "undone" by it.

  • Re:Blah (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 01, 2010 @03:31PM (#32762174)

    Disclaimer: I'm pro same-sex marriage. But to say gays don't have a right to marry is not true. The restrictions on who you can marry (over a certain age, opposite sex) apply to anyone, gay or not.

  • Re:Uneducated (Score:4, Informative)

    by MostAwesomeDude ( 980382 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:11PM (#32762884) Homepage

    Kind of. It was political allegory pointed at the Romans, and unsurprisingly, some of it has slight social relevance today.

    Oh, and it was written far before the Middle Ages. References in then-contemporary writing place it at least before 200 AD, and it might be as old as the Gospels.

  • Re:Uneducated (Score:4, Informative)

    by lgw ( 121541 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @04:46PM (#32763452) Journal

    It's equally reasonable that the Beast was an idea shared by 7 rulers (an idea like communism, or some other great evil). The "number" is almost certainly 616, not 666, and IIRC it's the "number of his name", the once-secret trick of assigning numbers to each letter of a name and adding them up in a certain way (kabbalism that used to be seen as real magic, but was commonly done in my highschool to see if lovers' names matched). Your key point, of course, was that everyone would wear the same mark, not a different mark for each, which makes this worry a bit silly.

    But of course the book was about the political stage at the time it was written, and the events described came to pass (or not), shortly thereafter. Time turns prophecy into history.

I was playing poker the other night... with Tarot cards. I got a full house and 4 people died. -- Steven Wright