Pro-Trump Pastor Claims Coronavirus Vaccine 'Conditioning' Americans for 'Mark of the Beast'

Jack Hibbs—a pastor and supporter of President Donald Trump—said in a recent sermon that he believes the COVID-19 vaccine is a means of social control that will "condition" people into accepting the mark of the beast, a Biblical prophecy of an anti-Christian marker that will be required to buy necessities and participate in modern secular life.

"Don't be tricked into thinking, 'Oh my goodness the vaccine's come in, and that's the mark of the beast,'" Hibbs said during his sermon. "It's not the mark of the beast. It's conditioning you for it."

Hibbs compared a mandatory COVID-19 vaccine to other types of social "conditioning" during the pandemic such as handwashing, mask use and use of plexiglass dividers which all prevent the spread of coronavirus. None of these preventative measures have been uniformly required by the federal government.

Jack Hibbs COVID-19 vaccine mark of beast
In a recent sermon, Trump-supporting pastor Jack Hibbs said that the COVID-19 vaccine is "conditioning" people for the Mark of the Beast, a Biblical prophecy of a bodily mark that will be forced upon all people during the end of the world. In this photo illustration, a man wearing a facemask lifts up his shirt sleeve to receive a COVID-19 vaccine from a doctor pulling the serum from a vial into a syringe. Manjurul/Getty

President-elect Joe Biden has said he won't make vaccines mandatory nationwide, although employers and states may require people to get vaccinated before allowing them back into workplaces, schools and colleges, USA Today reports.

The mark of the beast is mentioned in chapter 13, verse 18 of the Biblical Book of Revelation. The verse reads: "Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is six hundred and sixty-six."

The verse has been interpreted in different ways throughout history. While some Christian sects believe that the mark refers to a literal a tattoo, branding or identification marker that anti-Christian followers will impose to control all world citizens, others interpret the "mark" symbolically as any allegiance to a secular government or monetary system. A smaller group of Biblical scholars think the numbers 666 could be a numeric code to refer to a specific world leader or time span.

Hibbs is the senior pastor of the Calvary Chapel Chino Hills, a conservative fundamentalist in Chino, California that believes in a real and literal devil named Satan. His church opposes gay marriage, transgender medical care and comprehensive sex education in schools, according to the church's website.

In November, Hibbs made headlines by appearing in a now-viral video streamed live online the day after Election Day where he wept at the thought of a Joe Biden presidency. In the video, Hibbs prayed for Trump's victory.

"Please God you are pro-life. And one man is and one man is not. If you'd be pro-life for us." Hibbs said sobbing. "Jesus, lord. One man is for Israel and one is not. You are for Isreal. Lord, one man is for our military and our police and one is not. You are."

"Lord, have you brought Mike Pompeo to become Secretary of State only for that to end now?" Hibbs continued. "Have you brought, Lord, Amy Coney Barrett unto the court and that's it? We're done? God, we in this room we're still pro-life here."

Even though his prayer later acknowledged that God isn't affiliated with a mainstream political party, he nevertheless asked God to install a president who is "pro-Israel, pro-life, pro-religious freedom, pro-police [and] pro-military."

Newsweek contacted Hibbs for comment.