I recently came across a prophecy attributed to St. Elizabeth Ann Seton on Terry Nelson's blog Abbey Roads (see here) which I thought contained some striking parallels with my material on the mark of the Beast. Although we should be wary that the prophecy is another "of unknown origin" type that can't be traced back to a credible source, I thought I should mention it anyway, given this correlation. St. Elizabeth Ann Seton was the first native-born United States citizen to be canonized by the Catholic Church. Born in New York in 1774 to Episcopal parents, Seton eventually converted to Roman Catholicism and established religious communities in Emmitsburg, Maryland. The story that accompanies this prophecy states that Elizabeth Ann was given a vision sometime in the early 1800's which she did not quite understand at the time:
"Every American would have a black box in their home through which the devil would enter.”
Most people believe that this was a prophecy of television, with its seemingly limitless capacity to corrupt susceptible minds. However I believe this imagery calls to mind the Jewish practice of wearing phylacteries, which of course are black boxes worn in accordance with the shema of Deut 6.
“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. (Deut 6:4-9)
A phylactery (or tefillin) bearing the Hebrew letter shin, which coincidentally (or not...) resembles the letter W in the modern Latin alphabet.
Since the devil is said to enter through this "black box", it would have to be a diabolical inversion of this custom - which is exactly what the mark of the Beast is:
Also it causes all, both small and great, both rich and poor, both free and slave, 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. (Rev 13:16-17)
Just as the Jews wear phylacteries in a prescribed manner to spell Shaddai - a name for God, with the Hebrew letters shin, daleth and yod; the name of the Antichrist is found in the mark of the Beast (the diabolical phylactery), which bears the number of his name - 666.
So this "black box" through which the devil would enter has some striking similarities with the mark of the Beast. And since phylacteries are worn in the hand or forehead, as is the mark of the Beast, this would suggest that the "black box" is not television (which isn't really box-shaped anymore), but rather some other box-shaped device which is worn in the hand - namely cell phones.
While television has a lot to answer for in the secularisation of culture, we still not fully grasp the impact mobile phones will have on society. Children are certainly more withdrawn when in possession of these devices, preferring to communicate with various "friends" on their cell phones, through either SMS texts or social networking sites, where they often encounter cyber-bullying which has driven countless numbers to suicide. Also, because the internet is uncensored, any children with WAP cell phones are freely able to view any sort of material they wish through these devices, which is all too often obscene and graphic images of sex, violence or degradation which are shared around the school playgrounds (of course this reality is not limited to children, but to adults as well, who often share these images in workplaces for "fun"). There is a lot more freedom for the devil to work with through an uncensored form of media, unlike television, which although secular in nature, is still heavily regulated. What will happen when this future generation comes to power, who are so immersed in the culture of cell phones and the unfettered access to images of cruelty and depravity they provide? De-sensitisation to this material will surely see moral values in further decline from their already sorry state of existence. The devil surely finds the "black box" that is the modern cell phone an easier way of entering our lives. This combined with the fact that mobile phones are set to replace the use of the credit card in the not-too-distant future through the use of NFC technology, and that all such sales will be conducted over the worldwide web - www, which in turn is the numerical equivalent of three sixes in Hebrew, all further suggests we are living in the age of the prophecy of the mark of the Beast.
See also the related articles:
The Mark of the Beast?
NFC Technology and the Mark of the Beast
Fr Gobbi on the Mark of the Beast
Gematria and the Number of the Beast