Small Group Questions:  Branded by whom?

Summary:  We either have a mark or a seal.  Those who have the mark have made what appear
to be reasonable compromises in the interest of happiness, prosperity, and blessing.  But those
who have this mark are marked for destruction.  Those who refuse to receive this mark because
they are faithful to only one master, Jesus, have his seal identifying them as belonging to Christ
and are therefore spared from destruction when God executes his final judgment.  We need to be
discerning and ensure that we have truly accepted the Lordship of Christ, and have therefore
received his seal without compromise.

Optional Ice Breaker
-  What costume best hid your identity?
-  What part of your house do you typically hide when company comes over?

Explore:  (Rev 13:11-18)

1.  What is the beasts goal according to this passage?  What are the ways he
accomplishes that goal?  How does he use a "mark" accomplish his goal?

2.  Many people believe that the "mark" is some sort of micro-chip, UPC code, or
some other government device.  In what ways could this misunderstanding be

3.  The text does not say that 666 is some ultimate, sinister, obvious, dark evil in
the way many typically think of that number.  It simply says that it is "man's
number."  6 is one short of "7," the number of completeness, and even though it
has been raised to "666," it is still not a 7.  What sorts of things does this seem
to tell you about the beast, his character, and his tactics?

4.  What are some of the more subtle forms the "mark" takes in today's time? 
How might society view those who refuse the mark?


5.  In what ways have you been tempted with the mark?  What benefits did you
think you might gain if you took the mark?  Why are these not really benefits?

6.  Where in your life have/are you tempted to hide or subdue your faith?  Why?  

7.  How does the image of the beast being behind the scenes trying to get you to
take a "mark" affect how you see these temptations?

8.  What would it take for you do to overcome and be victorious over these

Prayer:  Use Matt 10:37-39 as a guide to your prayer