Hell, Revelation, and 666

Tuesday, June 6, 2006 is 6/6/06 on the calendar. Hell, Michigan as part of it’s on-going campaign to attract tourists has decided to have a big party.

Meanwhile Michigan Radio has made some effort to cover the “story.” Multiple times over the weekend I heard the announcer refer to the book of Revelations and 666 as being the number of the devil.

Warning! A Short Rant Follows:
Once upon a time, I majored in religion (and sociology). While I didn’t go into the ministry (though I attended seminary for a couple years), I do know a couple things.

1. The book in the Bible is named “Revelation.” One might say that it has multiple revelations within, but “Revelations” is not the name of the book.
2. The number 666 (some scholars argue it’s actually 606) is not the number of the devil. In Revelation, it is the number of the beast as well as the number of man (as in humanity, not just men). Some scholars argue that Revelation is as much about Nero and the Roman Empire as it is about anything supernatural–which might make 666 the number of Nero for all I know. So anyway, the key point being: 666 is not the number of the devil and it might not even be 666.


6 thoughts on “Hell, Revelation, and 666”

  1. I read that book and remember being amused at the idea of using exponential numbers to get the real number of the beast.

    The novel didn’t get good reviews though.

  2. I’d heard 616 before as well, but never understood it. Copying and pasting here from zhubert.com:

    ἑξακόσιοι ἑξήκοντα ἕξ

    (sorry if that doesn’t come through)

    ἑξήκοντα is 60, right? So where does sixteen come from rather than 66?

  3. The date is actually “6/6/2006″ on the calendar.

    Niggling point, and I guess it spoils all the fun, considering the actual “6/6/6″ occurred before Revelation was even written.

    Side “666” note: When my mom worked at a donut shop, she had a Sunday school group come in and order a round of coffee and donuts. Their total came to $6.66, which caused them all to pause for a moment, looking uncomfortable, before one leaned forward and said “I think I might like another donut, please.”

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