Prophecy Update Newsletter
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
The Prophetic Implication of the Mark of the Beast – Jonathan Brentner – https://www.jonathanbrentner.com/https/jonathan-brentner-g8fgsquarespacecom/config/2020/12/15/the-prophetic-implication-of-the-mark-of-the-beast
One of the more familiar phrases in the book of Revelation is also one of the most misunderstood ones. Many people have heard about the “mark of the beast” and its corresponding 666, but few recognize its prophetic significance or believe it will ever become a reality. Among those who believe it signifies a future and literal prophecy, it has become a source of confusion for some amid all the talk of COVID-19 vaccines.
The main passage regarding the “mark of the beast” is Revelation 13:16-18:
Also it [the beast} causes all, both small and great, both rich and poor, both free and slave,[e] to be marked on the right hand or the forehead, 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. This calls for wisdom: let the one who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man, and his number is 666.
Before tackling the prophetic significance of the mark for today, let’s look first at what we know about it from Scripture.
WHO IS THE BEAST?
The beast referred to in the above text is none other than the antichrist. He is the beast that will rise to power at the start of the tribulation and assume total control of all the nations of the earth by its midpoint if not before. He’s the “man of lawlessness” that Paul wrote about in 2 Thessalonians 2:3-10. Halfway through the seven-year tribulation, the antichrist will defile the Jewish temple in Jerusalem.
This desecration will begin his reign of terror in which he will demand that everyone on earth worship him as God (Rev. 13:5-9). It’s during the last 42 months of the tribulation that the antichrist will “make war on the saints” as well as the Jews. This is the time Jesus warned about in Matthew 24:15-22, which will be a time of great persecution for the Jews as well as for those who refuse to take the mark.
While the technology for the mark may already be in widespread use before the halfway point of the tribulation, at this point it will become mandatory along with the worship of the antichrist (see also Rev. 14:9) The penalty for refusing to worship the beast and take his mark will be certain death, most likely by beheading (Rev. 20:4).
WHAT IS THE MARK?
The word in the Greek for “mark” suggests that it will be a visible stamp or a permanent tattoo that will display one’s allegiance to the beast as well as allow that person to engage in commerce. It could be some sort of barcode whereby the store scans the person and the groceries or clothes one is buying into the system. More likely, one’s identifying information will be stored on a computer chip underneath the mark that will instantly connect the person with all his or her information on a distant central database that will instantly reveal whether or not the person has the necessary digital money to complete the purchase.
Peter Koenig, a geopolitical analyst and former Senior Economist at the World Bank and the World Health Organization (WHO), wrote the following about ID2020, which contains all the key elements for the coming mark of the beast described in Revelation 13.
What is the infamous ID2020? It is an alliance of public-private partners, including UN agencies and civil society. It’s an electronic ID program that uses generalized vaccination as a platform for digital identity.
Another hypothesis, at this point only a hypothesis, but a realistic one, is that along with the vaccination – if not with this one, then possibly with a later one, a nano-chip may be injected, unknown to the person being vaccinated. The chip may be remotely charged with all your personal data, including bank accounts – digital money. Yes, digital money that’s what “they” are aiming at, so you really have no control any more over your health and other intimate data, but also over your earnings and spending. Your money could be blocked, or taken away – as a ‘sanction’ for misbehavior, for swimming against the stream. You may become a mere slave of the masters.
We are moving towards a totalitarian state of the world. This is part of Agenda ID2020 – and these steps to be implemented now – prepared since long, including by the coronavirus computer simulation at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore on 18 October 2019, sponsored by the WEF and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.[i]
We know from Scripture that without the mark of the beast, people will not be able to buy or sell. Peter Koenig, who is not a believer and does not reference the mark in his articles, says that even with ID2020, one’s behavior may determine whether or not one has full access to his or her funds.
When I first learned about the Mark of the Beast, it seemed like something that belonged to a far distant time, although I believed it would happen someday. Now decades later, we not only have the technology to make it a reality, but the globalists at the World Economic Forum (WEF), UN, and elsewhere talk openly about ID2020, which sounds remarkably similar to the mark of the beast described in Revelation 13.
WILL ACCEPTING THE MARK OF THE BEAST SEAL ONE’S ETERNAL FATE?
Revelation 14:9-11 tells us that those who worship the beast and receive his mark will face an eternity in hell. These verses do not allow for repentance or for turning to Christ once a person receives the mark, which will seal their eternal fate.
Besides worshiping the antichrist, is there anything else about taking this mark that might make a person’s eternal destiny irreversible? Yes! Many prophecy speakers suggest, and I agree, that the transhuman element inherent in the future plans discussed by the WEF may be the reason for this. If the mark that the antichrist will force people to take during the tribulation changes the DNA of people as the globalists plan to do through future vaccines, these injections may change people to the extent that they are no longer part of the human race for which Jesus died on the cross.
Bill Gates openly discusses his plans to change our DNA with vaccines. The globalists make no secret whatsoever of their intent to change humanity into something unrecognizable at the current time.
It’s what Klaus Schwab, the founder of the WEF, refers to as “Fourth Industrial Revolution;” though it’s far different than the previous ones. He wrote this about the transhuman nature of people once this new industrial revolution takes hold during The Great Reset:
Previous industrial revolutions liberated humankind from animal power, made mass production possible and brought digital capabilities to billions of people. This Fourth Industrial Revolution is, however, fundamentally different. It is characterized by a range of new technologies that are fusing the physical, digital and biological worlds, impacting all disciplines, economies and industries, and even challenging ideas about what it means to be human.[ii]
Klaus Schwab intends to dramatically change the human race by combining individuals with machines that decades ago was only the stuff of wild science fiction. Now, it’s a part of The Great Reset that has captured the admiration of world leaders other than President Trump who opposes globalism.
When one considers the words of Klaus Schwab, it stands to reason that those who take the mark will surrender their lives to the control of the beast. The mark may render people incapable of placing their faith in Jesus. Could it also make disobedience to the antichrist impossible as well?
Peter Koenig, who bases his future hopes on people rising up and thwarting the plans of the WEF for The Great Reset, wrote this about the tyranny the globalists’ plans for humanity:
It is not without reference tongue-in-cheek to the 2010 Rockefeller Report which foresaw and planned as the first phase of their deliberate “Human Transformation” – the Lockstep scenario.
The transformation as we now know, is planned to be nothing less than a modification and digitization of the human genome, robotization of our brains – so as to gain total control over the population – those that are left of us, after the UN agenda 2021-2030 is fully implemented.[iii]
It's staggering to contemplate that the elite of our world have already put so much planning into what appears to be what Revelation 13 and 14 describe as the mark of the beast. And if we see such open discussion preparation for something that the antichrist will not be fully implement and enforce until the midpoint of the seven-year tribulation, how close are we to its start?
THE PROPHETIC IMPLICATION OF THE MARK OF THE BEAST
With the current emphasis on the COVID-19 vaccine and the push to make it mandatory, some wonder if this is the mark of the beast. While it appears that the mark will likely include a vaccine, any such injection before the start of the tribulation cannot be it. The church will be in heaven with Jesus well before the antichrist gains control of the world and forces everyone to take his mark under penalty of death.
Some wonder if its possible for someone to unknowingly accept the mark today. Again, the answer is no; the antichrist will require those who receive it to worship him. People with any understanding of Scripture during the tribulation, will know what the mark signifies as well as the consequences for taking it.
What is the key prophetic implication of the mark of the beast? The open planning for it among the world’s richest and most powerful people tells us that the Lord’s appearing to take us home must be exceedingly close since we know this happens before the start of the tribulation.
As it is, I never thought I would see so many signs of tribulation before the rapture as I see today.
Our departure from this world may not happen this week, this month, or even in the foreseeable future, however, we are well past the time when we can assume it will not happen today, this week, or in the very near future.
We may see Christmas 2021 before the rapture happens, but it’s also quite possible the Lord will come for us before January 1, 2021.
What we do know for sure is that the rapture is closer than most believers think it is. Its nearness is good news for us because it’s the moment we receive glorified bodies and a glorious and joyous eternal adventure begins for us. It does not get any better than that.
Note: Please consider signing up for my newsletter on the home page of my website at https://www.jonathanbrentner.com/ . It will greatly help me in reaching more people. Thanks!
[i] Peter Koenig, The Coronavirus COVID-19 Pandemic: The Real Danger is “Agenda ID2020”, on the Global Research Website at: https://www.globalresearch.ca/coronavirus-causes-effects-real-danger-agenda-id2020/5706153
[ii] Klaus Schwab, The Fourth Industrial Revolution, on the WEF website.
[iii] Peter Koenig, Radical De-Globalization: Finding Back Our Freedom and Sovereignty on the Global Research Website at: https://www.globalresearch.ca/radical-de-globalization-finding-back-our-freedom-sovereignty-tyrants-dont-create-tyranny-obedience-does/5732186
Nearing Midnight: All Eyes on Georgia – Todd Strandberg - https://www.raptureready.com/category/nearing-midnight/
It appears that some form of monkey business took place on election night in the selection of our next president and vice-president. When Trump was 800,000 votes ahead in Pennsylvania, it didn’t seem mathematically impossible for Biden to close the gap. I watched in amazement as 90% of the new votes came in for Biden. The only way for this to be possible is that 28% of registered Republicans decided to vote for the other party.
Trump did better with Blacks, women, and Hispanics across all states. He came up short in the needed 270 electoral college votes because he under-performed in six key swing states. With the Supreme Court having passed on an opportunity to rule on Pennsylvania’s violation of its own state constitutional rules regarding federal elections, it is clear the justices don’t have the stomach to get involved.
I still have a tiny amount of hope that evidence of massive fraud will come to light. The house legislatures in five of the swing states are controlled by Republicans, and they have the constitutional right to change their electoral votes. Republicans are so mousey when it comes to standing up for any cause, deceased people would have to come back to life and say they didn’t vote for Biden before fraud would be declared.
Everything now hangs in the balance in the state of Georgia. If the Democrats win both runoff races on January 5, they will have a 50-seat (plus tiebreaker Kamala Harris) majority in the Senate. This would lead to the nightmare scenario of Chuck Schumer becoming Senate Majority leader.
Just a few weeks ago, Schumer told MSNBC’s Joy Reid, “I’m not busting my chops to become majority leader to do very little or nothing. We are going to get a whole lot done. And as I’ve said, everything, everything is on the table.”
When probed as to whether statehood for Puerto Rico and D.C. were on the docket, Schumer replied, “I would — believe me, on D.C. and Puerto Rico, particularly if Puerto Rico votes for it; D.C. already has voted for it and wants it. I’d love to make them states.”
If the Democrats win both runoff races on January 5, they will likely pack the Supreme Court and end the filibuster—appointing activist justices who would legislate from the bench, and axing a rule that encourages coalition-building and prevents simple-majority tyranny in the Senate.
In a typical year, the two Republican incumbents, Senators David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler, would both have a 90% chance of winning their races. The two Democratic challengers are radical leftists. Raphael Warnock is an advocate of the BLM agenda who has attacked police, attacked the military, and said he would raise taxes. Warnock has called police “gangsters, thugs, bullies and a threat to our children.”
What gives me concern about this runoff race is the Democrats’ magical success with absentee ballots. Nearly one million voters have already requested mail-in ballots for the runoff elections, according to state election officials, including more than 600,000 people who were eligible to receive the ballots automatically. In the November election, Biden won nearly 400,000 more absentee ballots than Trump.
The only legal way for the Democrats to get so many votes is that they have a massive political machine that goes out and gets people to vote for their candidate. If they go to a church and hand absentee ballots out to everyone, the question is what happens to the ballots that went to the wrong candidate?
One sign of irregularity from the November election is that thousands of ballots were only cast for the president. Some people may have cared only about the top race, but I can’t imagine not voting in the House and Senate races.
If you live in Georgia, your vote on January 5th will matter a thousand times what it did in November.
Again, the odds are very low that both Republican incumbents would be defeated. If the Democrats pull off a miracle of miracles, then we will know for sure that the system is rigged.
I know many Christians are scratching their heads and wondering why God allowed Biden to steal or win the election. I think it has to do with the Bible’s prediction that things will get progressively worse as we get closer to the tribulation hour. Since Trump has made liberal media and the Democrats as radical as possible with their hatred of him, it’s time to move on. As the world quickly transforms into a police state fit for the Antichrist, it will soon be time for the Church to also move on. Come, Lord Jesus.
“But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived” (2 Timothy 3:13).
Between Now and January 20 – Bill Perkins – www.compass.org
The Presidential election, despite all the national networks and social media doing everything they can to say otherwise, has NOT been decided.
Biden has yet to be formally elected. As you will see, much can and will happen and all of it favors President Trump.
In all past elections, once the popular vote is tabulated, a series of things happen of which most people aren't aware. There are numerous points in this process between now and January 20 where Trump could prevail.
Did you notice Biden getting all upset recently over those five swing states each filing a separate slate of Republican electors? Biden knows that means the electors/election will be contested in the House of Representatives.
The constitution lays out the procedures to follow if there's a contested election. And those procedures favor President Trump, not Biden.
To learn the entire process of what's ahead for the electors use the link below. It's about 45 minutes long, but if you want the exact details, they're in this video.
CLICK HERE: https://prayingmedic.com/2020/12/12/the-path-to-inauguration-election-update-december-12-2020/
I do think that video is very encouraging. I'm still of the opinion that President Trump will be inaugurated January 20th. And this video proves it's possible, if not probable.
But what if...
But let's take it a step further. What if the Supreme Court won't hear the fraud allegations and the House for some unknown reason can't get the victory to President Trump?
January 6 is a big date
In our constitutionally prescribed process the Vice-President is in charge of the House of Representatives, not Nancy Pelosi, and Vice-President Pence has to accept the electors.
We just received word that the Dominion voting machines and software used in the five swing states were analyzed by forensic experts. They confirmed there were algorithms in the software programing that pushed votes to Biden and away from President Trump.(1)
Without those algorithms in place, President Trump wins in a landslide with over 400 electoral votes. He was defrauded and now there is proof.
Therefore, if Vice-President Pence believes fraud has taken place, he can choose to not accept the electors from those five states. That would put Biden under the 270 electoral votes he needs to be elected. It's Pence's call to make.
If Pence throws out those swing state electors, the House would then vote on who will be President—one vote per state. There are about 30 Republican and 20 Democrat states. President Trump would win. This all happens on January 6.
There is no doubt if Biden and his China/communist backers take over, our Republican form of government is totally over. In ten years, tops, there will be no middle class, no private property ownership, no stock ownership (stakeholders not stockholders), and no chance of ever getting back our Republic.
America as you have known it will be gone forever. In no uncertain terms, we are at war and the enemy is both foreign and domestic. A leaked list of 2 million Chinese secret members has just been released and 20 U.S. Governors are on the list!(2)
Our Idaho's Governor Little, who has made so many odd, un-Idaho-like decisions during this plandemic, is on the list. Well no wonder! I hope they all go to prison.
Knowing those Democrats who will be taking over are committed to installing a communist regime in our country, should President Trump just walk away and let them have our country?
If President Trump does believe the Chinese Communists are in fact behind this destabilization of our government in order to literally conquer us/take over, and Biden and his cronies are in on it, should he allow them to take over? Or should they be arrested?
As far-fetched as that seems, a war is a war. All options would still be on the table for the President. He definitely needs our prayers!!!
Big Brother in Disguise: The Rise Of A New, Technological World Order – John Whitehead - https://www.prophecynewswatch.com/article.cfm?recent_news_id=4457
"You had to live--did live, from habit that became instinct--in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinized."--George Orwell, 1984
It had the potential for disaster.
Early in the morning of Monday, December 15, 2020, Google suffered a major worldwide outage in which all of its internet-connected services crashed, including Nest, Google Calendar, Gmail, Docs, Hangouts, Maps, Meet and YouTube.
The outage only lasted an hour, but it was a chilling reminder of how reliant the world has become on internet-connected technologies to do everything from unlocking doors and turning up the heat to accessing work files, sending emails and making phone calls.
A year earlier, a Google outage resulted in Nest users being unable to access their Nest thermostats, Nest smart locks, and Nest cameras. As Fast Company reports, "This essentially meant that because of a cloud storage outage, people were prevented from getting inside their homes, using their AC, and monitoring their babies."
Welcome to the Matrix.
Twenty-some years after the Wachowskis' iconic film, The Matrix, introduced us to a futuristic world in which humans exist in a computer-simulated non-reality powered by authoritarian machines--a world where the choice between existing in a denial-ridden virtual dream-state or facing up to the harsh, difficult realities of life comes down to a blue pill or a red pill--we stand at the precipice of a technologically-dominated matrix of our own making.
We are living the prequel to The Matrix with each passing day, falling further under the spell of technologically-driven virtual communities, virtual realities and virtual conveniences managed by artificially intelligent machines that are on a fast track to replacing human beings and eventually dominating every aspect of our lives.
Science fiction has become fact.
In The Matrix, computer programmer Thomas Anderson a.k.a. hacker Neo is wakened from a virtual slumber by Morpheus, a freedom fighter seeking to liberate humanity from a lifelong hibernation state imposed by hyper-advanced artificial intelligence machines that rely on humans as an organic power source. With their minds plugged into a perfectly crafted virtual reality, few humans ever realize they are living in an artificial dream world.
Neo is given a choice: to take the red pill, wake up and join the resistance, or take the blue pill, remain asleep and serve as fodder for the powers-that-be.
Most people opt for the blue pill.
In our case, the blue pill--a one-way ticket to a life sentence in an electronic concentration camp--has been honey-coated to hide the bitter aftertaste, sold to us in the name of expediency and delivered by way of blazingly fast Internet, cell phone signals that never drop a call, thermostats that keep us at the perfect temperature without our having to raise a finger, and entertainment that can be simultaneously streamed to our TVs, tablets and cell phones.
Yet we are not merely in thrall with these technologies that were intended to make our lives easier. We have become enslaved by them.
Look around you. Everywhere you turn, people are so addicted to their internet-connected screen devices--smart phones, tablets, computers, televisions--that they can go for hours at a time submerged in a virtual world where human interaction is filtered through the medium of technology.
This is not freedom.
This is not even progress.
This is technological tyranny and iron-fisted control delivered by way of the surveillance state, corporate giants such as Google and Facebook, and government spy agencies such as the National Security Agency.
So consumed are we with availing ourselves of all the latest technologies that we have spared barely a thought for the ramifications of our heedless, headlong stumble towards a world in which our abject reliance on internet-connected gadgets and gizmos is grooming us for a future in which freedom is an illusion.
Yet it's not just freedom that hangs in the balance. Humanity itself is on the line.
If ever Americans find themselves in bondage to technological tyrants, we will have only ourselves to blame for having forged the chains through our own lassitude, laziness and abject reliance on internet-connected gadgets and gizmos that render us wholly irrelevant.
Indeed, we're fast approaching Philip K. Dick's vision of the future as depicted in the film Minority Report. There, police agencies apprehend criminals before they can commit a crime, driverless cars populate the highways, and a person's biometrics are constantly scanned and used to track their movements, target them for advertising, and keep them under perpetual surveillance.
Cue the dawning of the Age of the Internet of Things (IoT), in which internet-connected "things" monitor your home, your health and your habits in order to keep your pantry stocked, your utilities regulated and your life under control and relatively worry-free.
The key word here, however, is control.
In the not-too-distant future, "just about every device you have -- and even products like chairs, that you don't normally expect to see technology in -- will be connected and talking to each other."
By the end of 2018, "there were an estimated 22 billion internet of things connected devices in use around the world... Forecasts suggest that by 2030 around 50 billion of these IoT devices will be in use around the world, creating a massive web of interconnected devices spanning everything from smartphones to kitchen appliances."
As the technologies powering these devices have become increasingly sophisticated, they have also become increasingly widespread, encompassing everything from toothbrushes and lightbulbs to cars, smart meters and medical equipment.
It is estimated that 127 new IoT devices are connected to the web every second.
This "connected" industry has become the next big societal transformation, right up there with the Industrial Revolution, a watershed moment in technology and culture.
Between driverless cars that completely lacking a steering wheel, accelerator, or brake pedal, and smart pills embedded with computer chips, sensors, cameras and robots, we are poised to outpace the imaginations of science fiction writers such as Philip K. Dick and Isaac Asimov.
These Internet-connected techno gadgets include smart light bulbs that discourage burglars by making your house look occupied, smart thermostats that regulate the temperature of your home based on your activities, and smart doorbells that let you see who is at your front door without leaving the comfort of your couch.
Nest, Google's suite of smart home products, has been at the forefront of the "connected" industry, with such technologically savvy conveniences as a smart lock that tells your thermostat who is home, what temperatures they like, and when your home is unoccupied; a home phone service system that interacts with your connected devices to "learn when you come and go" and alert you if your kids don't come home; and a sleep system that will monitor when you fall asleep, when you wake up, and keep the house noises and temperature in a sleep-conducive state.
The aim of these internet-connected devices, as Nest proclaims, is to make "your house a more thoughtful and conscious home." For example, your car can signal ahead that you're on your way home, while Hue lights can flash on and off to get your attention if Nest Protect senses something's wrong. Your coffeemaker, relying on data from fitness and sleep sensors, will brew a stronger pot of coffee for you if you've had a restless night.
Yet given the speed and trajectory at which these technologies are developing, it won't be long before these devices are operating entirely independent of their human creators, which poses a whole new set of worries.
As technology expert Nicholas Carr notes, "As soon as you allow robots, or software programs, to act freely in the world, they're going to run up against ethically fraught situations and face hard choices that can't be resolved through statistical models. That will be true of self-driving cars, self-flying drones, and battlefield robots, just as it's already true, on a lesser scale, with automated vacuum cleaners and lawnmowers."
For instance, just as the robotic vacuum, Roomba, "makes no distinction between a dust bunny and an insect," weaponized drones--poised to take to the skies en masse this year--will be incapable of distinguishing between a fleeing criminal and someone merely jogging down a street.
For that matter, how do you defend yourself against a robotic cop--such as the Atlas android being developed by the Pentagon--that has been programmed to respond to any perceived threat with violence?
Moreover, it's not just our homes and personal devices that are being reordered and reimagined in this connected age: it's our workplaces, our health systems, our government, our bodies and our innermost thoughts that are being plugged into a matrix over which we have no real control.
Indeed, it is expected that by 2030, we will all experience The Internet of Senses (IoS), enabled by Artificial Intelligence (AI), Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), 5G, and automation. The Internet of Senses relies on connected technology interacting with our senses of sight, sound, taste, smell, and touch by way of the brain as the user interface. As journalist Susan Fourtane explains:
Many predict that by 2030, the lines between thinking and doing will blur. Fifty-nine percent of consumers believe that we will be able to see map routes on VR glasses by simply thinking of a destination... By 2030, technology is set to respond to our thoughts, and even share them with others... Using the brain as an interface could mean the end of keyboards, mice, game controllers, and ultimately user interfaces for any digital device. The user needs to only think about the commands, and they will just happen. Smartphones could even function without touch screens.
In other words, the IoS will rely on technology being able to access and act on your thoughts.
Fourtane outlines several trends related to the IoS that are expected to become a reality by 2030:
1: Thoughts become action: using the brain as the interface, for example, users will be able to see map routes on VR glasses by simply thinking of a destination.
2: Sounds will become an extension of the devised virtual reality: users could mimic anyone's voice realistically enough to fool even family members.
3: Real food will become secondary to imagined tastes. A sensory device for your mouth could digitally enhance anything you eat, so that any food can taste like your favorite treat.
4: Smells will become a projection of this virtual reality so that virtual visits, to forests or the countryside for instance, would include experiencing all the natural smells of those places.
5: Total touch: Smartphones with screens will convey the shape and texture of the digital icons and buttons they are pressing.
6: Merged reality: VR game worlds will become indistinguishable from physical reality by 2030.
Unfortunately, in our race to the future, we have failed to consider what such dependence on technology might mean for our humanity, not to mention our freedoms.
Ingestible or implantable chips are a good example of how unprepared we are, morally and otherwise, to navigate this uncharted terrain. Hailed as revolutionary for their ability to access, analyze and manipulate your body from the inside, these smart pills can remind you to take your medication, search for cancer, and even send an alert to your doctor warning of an impending heart attack.
Sure, the technology could save lives, but is that all we need to know?
Have we done our due diligence in asking all the questions that need to be asked before unleashing such awesome technology on an unsuspecting populace?
For example, asks Washington Post reporter Ariana Eunjung Cha:
What kind of warnings should users receive about the risks of implanting chip technology inside a body, for instance? How will patients be assured that the technology won't be used to compel them to take medications they don't really want to take? Could law enforcement obtain data that would reveal which individuals abuse drugs or sell them on the black market? Could what started as a voluntary experiment be turned into a compulsory government identification program that could erode civil liberties?
Let me put it another way.
If you were shocked by Edward Snowden's revelations about how NSA agents have used surveillance to spy on Americans' phone calls, emails and text messages, can you imagine what unscrupulous government agents could do with access to your internet-connected car, home and medications?
Imagine what a SWAT team could do with the ability to access, monitor and control your internet-connected home--locking you in, turning off the lights, activating alarms, etc.
While President Trump signed the Internet of Things Cybersecurity Improvement Act into law on Dec. 4, 2020, in order to establish a baseline for security protection for the billions of IoT devices flooding homes and businesses, the law does little to protect the American people against corporate and governmental surveillance.
In fact, the public response to concerns about government surveillance has amounted to a collective shrug.
After all, who cares if the government can track your whereabouts on your GPS-enabled device so long as it helps you find the fastest route from Point A to Point B? Who cares if the NSA is listening in on your phone calls and downloading your emails so long as you can get your phone calls and emails on the go and get lightning fast Internet on the fly? Who cares if the government can monitor your activities in your home by tapping into your internet-connected devices--thermostat, water, lights--so long as you can control those things with the flick of a finger, whether you're across the house or across the country?
Control is the key here.
As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, total control over every aspect of our lives, right down to our inner thoughts, is the objective of any totalitarian regime.
George Orwell understood this.
Orwell's masterpiece, 1984, portrays a global society of total control in which people are not allowed to have thoughts that in any way disagree with the corporate state. There is no personal freedom, and advanced technology has become the driving force behind a surveillance-driven society. Snitches and cameras are everywhere. And people are subject to the Thought Police, who deal with anyone guilty of thought crimes. The government, or "Party," is headed by Big Brother, who appears on posters everywhere with the words: "Big Brother is watching you."
Make no mistake: the Internet of Things and its twin, the Internet of Senses, is just Big Brother in disguise.
Daily Jot: Persecution Road – Bill Wilson – www.dailyjot.com
The Boko Haram terrorist organization and, more specifically, Fulani nomadic tribesmen, are Islamic terrorists that roam through Nigeria and other countries, including our ministry outreach host, Ghana. Their goal is ethnic cleansing of Christians while raping the land of its resources. This is what makes the mission work of The Daily Jot and our partner ministry in Ghana so dangerous. These incidents of terrorism occur in the very rural areas where neither church nor government wish to enter, yet the people who are poor, underserved, and unarmed are often at the mercy of these militants who seek to kill, steal and destroy all who resist them. I know, I have had first-hand experience with this.
On December 7, the US State Department designated Nigeria as part of its list of Countries of Particular Concern for “engaging in or tolerating systematic, ongoing, egregious violations of religious freedom.” Nigeria is the origination point for Boko Haram and many Fulani. Pastor William Agbeti, our ministry partner in Ghana, reports: “The newest fear amongst many in Ghana today is that, as the US has designated Nigeria in particular and many other countries as worst religious freedom violators, and global attention is turned on them to curtail atrocities, there is likely going to be a spill-over of Fulani activities into Ghana. The Fulanis resident in Ghana and their migrating counterparts from Nigeria, have become a thorny issue bordering on national security in Ghana.
“They are the untouchables. No one dares to stop them in their quest to find grazing land for their cattle. Any attempt to resist them is likely to turn into bloodshed, maiming, destruction of properties, rape, armed attacks and what have you. Disaster, destruction, killings and mayhem follow their trail. They destroy vast farmlands with careless abandon. They kill innocent natives who come between them and their animals. They are known to engage themselves in armed robbery, rapes and organized attacks on people. Also, the whole development has become murkier, with resident Fulanis claiming citizenship by birth in Ghana, per the constitution of the country.” Ghana is one of those countries that severely restricts firearm ownership. Which is a living example of how the criminal element is enabled to prey on the weak.
This is where our ministry operates—in those poor areas where the Islamists bully and sometimes kill those who stand in their way. In addition to running cattle, Islamists literally take farmland they don’t own—using heavy machinery to scoop up topsoil and haul it away for sale in faraway places. They disrupt our church services, and threaten our pastors. Through the heroic efforts of Pastor Agbeti and his brave band of volunteers we persist, encouraging the saints in rural areas with clothing, clean water and food. 2 Timothy 3:12 says, “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.” And they do. A persecution road extends from Nigeria through Ghana. Some of us stand in it. Many may say, “Why don’t authorities put an end to this?” Rural Ghanaians may ask the same about Antifa in Portland. That’s how it starts.
Daily Devotion: It’s Time to Forgive - by Greg Laurie – www.harvest.org
Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you. —Ephesians 4:32
https://harvest.org/resources/devotion/its-time-to-forgive/ - Listen
As Christmas approaches, you’ll probably be gathering with family. Maybe you’ll be traveling, or maybe your family will be coming to you.
There are some family members that you’re probably looking forward to seeing. And there are some that perhaps you’re not looking forward to seeing because they’ve hurt you. So I’d like to offer a word of advice this Christmas: forgive people who’ve wronged you and hurt you in life.
I don’t know what those people have done. But I do know what God has done. Ephesians 4 says, “Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you” (verses 31–32 NLT).
Here’s my question for you: Do you deserve to be forgiven by God?
No, you don’t. Neither do I. But He forgave us. Therefore, we should forgive others.
It isn’t about whether they deserve forgiveness. Forgiving someone isn’t letting them off the hook. Forgiving someone is a way for you to be free from a life of bitterness. Otherwise, you can be living in a prison of anger and even despair.
Really, forgiveness is more for you than it is for the one who wronged you. As I’ve said many times, when you forgive someone, you set a prisoner free: yourself.
You’re the one who’s being tortured, so let it go. Forgive. That is the unique characteristic of a true follower of Jesus Christ. We have the ability, given to us from God, to forgive people who have done horrible things to us.
It might surprise you to know that failing to forgive others, even when they have sinned against you, is a sin on your part against God. If you’re a Christian, then you need to be a forgiving person.
FROM THE HEART
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