There are two ways to approach life.
The first is to live it selfishly, taking what you can before the other guy does first. This worldview is commonly described as “dog-eat-dog” and “survival-of-the-fittest.” It leads to mistrust, fear, and violence. You must put yourself first, because nobody else will care for you.
The other approach is one of loving community. You give from your abundance to those in need. You protect the liberty of others. You do not have to hoard, because you know that your neighbor cares about you and is willing to help in dire circumstances. You can put others first, because you know they put you first.
This whole controversy started in heaven. We have delved into this topic before, so I will leave it to you to explore those articles that cover this issue more comprehensively.
From this great controversy has arisen two sides. For simplicity’s sake, let us call them “Good” and “Evil.”
The Good Side wants peace and joy and liberty for all. It uses love to achieve this objective.
The Evil Side wants peace and joy for itself. It uses lies and coercion to achieve this objective.
Which one do you think works best for society?
As earthlings, we have never really experienced Utopia. Not since that first Garden planted in Eden has humankind experienced true peace and joy in an atmosphere of pure love.
All we have experienced is the Evil Side. Your neighbor uses fear to control you and keep you anxious. Governments use Evil Side methods when they attempt to scare you with foreign enemies bent on our destruction. This fear you experience causes you to ally yourself with the entity you believe can protect your life and property best. Since the government controls the army, you put your trust in it.
But the Bible warns us that a political power in the end times will use fear to take significant control of the lives of its citizens. It will take so much control, in fact, that it will cause you to take a mark to identify yourself so that you can be approved or rejected when you attempt to buy or sell products and services.
And the second beast required all people small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their forehead, so that no one could buy or sell unless he had the mark—the name of the beast or the number of its name.Revelation 13:16–17 (NIV)
There is much speculation as to what this mark is. In the past, people imagined credit cards and bar codes were the marks. Many times, it will be pictured as a literal tattoo on the literal skin of your wrist or forehead.
However, if you study the issue thoroughly, you will conclude that it involves allegiance to one of the sides. You give your allegiance to a power either through your thoughts (represented by the forehead) or your actions (represented by the right hand). Our point for now is, as you can discern from the passage, the Evil Side will be issuing the mark and controlling commerce with it.
The Good Side always presents the truth in love and leaves you free to decide.
The Evil Side forces you to conform to its ideas, regardless of what you think or feel about a matter.
Unfortunately, those who love cannot persist in a society of evil. Evil not only corrupts, it destroys. Over time, there will be fewer and fewer on the Good Side. Eventually, the Evil Side will completely take over, and nobody will be on the Good Side.
We can see this happen in the Old Testament book of Genesis, right before the flood.
The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time.Genesis 6:5 (NIV)
Without intervention, all those on the Good Side will be gone. In fact, back in Noah’s day, God intervened so that humanity would not be lost! If God had not allowed the wicked to perish in the flood, humanity would have been lost. Noah, the last righteous man on earth, would have died and, with him, the only hope of the coming Messiah.
God intervened by putting the wicked to sleep so that He could save Noah and preserve the avenue for Messiah. This was a loving intervention. Those who perished in the flood waters will live again. It is quite possible that some will have repented because of seeing the flood, just like the thief on the cross when he saw Jesus. The thief still had to die, but Jesus promised the thief that he would be in paradise.
I am thankful that God is intervening in every human life to save it! He intervened in my life. The reason you are here at this blog is because God has a message for you:
I love you and want you to live forever in peace and joy in paradise with your friends and family!
Which one feels better to you?
We can objectively say that you feel more comfortable, less fearful, and more joyful in a community where everyone looks out for everyone else. Fear is eliminated when you know that love is the principle everyone follows, because love does no harm to a neighbor (Romans 13:10).
Which one is better for you?
Again, we can objectively say that a community where everyone looks out for everyone else is conducive to the peace and joy of all its members. Your health–physical, mental, and emotional–is safe and secure in an environment of love.
Whose side are you on?