Q. You say that according to Rev. 14:9-12 everyone who worships the beast and his image or receives the mark of his name will be lost. Others have said they can be redeemed. I’m reminded of a book by C. S. Lewis that implies that nonbelievers choose their fate and their hearts are hard and won’t change. From this I’d think that those who take the mark do so willingly and no one is forced to take the mark. They may be given a choice but no one will take them down and give them the mark. Am I assuming to much?
A. I agree with you. I think people who take the mark will do so willingly, as a sign of loyalty. Rev. 13:16 says the false prophet will cause people to take the mark, which means it will be his idea to require it. While the penalty for refusal will be severe, no one will be forced to take the mark against his or her will. Otherwise, a just God could not condemn the people who take it.