The race to be the first and fastest in 5G technology has become a global contest.
A Nokia executive told Fox Business on Thursday that China's pressure on its phone manufacturers to develop and quickly deploy fifth-generation wireless technology should serve as a warning to other top countries, including the U.S., adding that the commitment to develop its own 5G network is aimed to advance the goal of "overtaking America as the leading business superpower."
But what does 5G, technology, artificial intelligence and more have to do with the Antichrist and the end times?
Plenty, says pastor and author Mark Biltz, who wrote Decoding the Antichrist and the End Times: What the Bible Says and What the Future Holds.
"As technology becomes more and more a part of our everyday lives," Biltz says, "we must consider theories about the Antichrist and emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, Siri, Alexa, Watson, 5G and more, which are creeping into our lives on a daily basis and changing our perspective of how things could possibly play out even in the next few years.
"And as the technology race continues, it is no longer difficult to imagine the Antichrist as some kind of hybrid human cyborg able to project himself all over the world at one time as a hologram that demands to be worshipped," he added. "With all the advances in technology—the ability to produce avatars, holograms and computer software installed in our bodies so our thoughts and emotions, as well as our purchases and our movements, can be monitored—there is no doubt that we are at the culmination of one age and entering the threshold of another."
President Donald Trump has said he wants 5G technology in the U.S. as soon as possible, adding that "the race to 5G is a race America must win."
CNBC reported that U.S. officials say "Chinese companies like Huawei should not (be) allowed to build out the critical infrastructure, such as radio networking equipment and software, that will enable 5G. They warn that Huawei equipment could create a backdoor for the Chinese government to spy on American networks—a claim the company has repeatedly denied."
When it comes to China, and its aim to be a technology leader, Biltz also points to how AI surveillance has become very advanced in China.
"Just conduct a search on 'China surveillance state' and read about the hundreds of millions of AI cameras that can catch a suspect within minutes," Biltz says. "China combines this surveillance with analysis of its citizens' social media habits and online shopping purchases to determine which citizens' lifestyles are deemed to be acceptable. People in China are given a social credit score based on everything from what they post online to how quickly they pay their taxes and how they cross the street."
Biltz adds that Chinese citizens with a low rating are blacklisted, meaning they are unable to book flights or purchase train tickets, they are prevented from renting or buying property, and their children can't attend private schools. People with higher scores are given perks such as jumping the line for health care, receiving discounted energy bills, obtaining lower interest rates and skipping deposits on apartments.
"Millions of China's 1.4 billion citizens have already been given these social credit scores, and the list is expanding," Biltz said. "The goal is that the list will encompass everyone nationwide by 2020. Imagine when every country adopts this surveillance policy. If the Christian lifestyle is deemed unwholesome, if believers are blacklisted, they won't even be able to access the internet or buy food. Those who control the data will control all of human life. The computing power, along with algorithms and biological research, will be available, so these data-controllers will know you even more than you know yourself."
The central theme of Decoding the Antichrist is the role of technology in our future, as Biltz takes an in-depth look at some of the deepest questions surrounding the Antichrist:
- What does the Bible say about the Antichrist, his tactics and his motivation?
- Will he be a Muslim, a Jew or a professed Christian—or something else?
- Will the Antichrist work through modern technology to seize control?
"I believe we are truly entering the final chapter on this world's stage, and the curtain will soon be coming down or rolled away," Biltz says. "I am not claiming to know how many pages are left in God's script, but those who have eyes to see and ears to hear what the Spirit of God is saying know it is time to start packing your bags, spiritually speaking."
Mark Biltz is founder of El Shaddai Ministries and a well-known and popular commentator on the feasts of the Lord. In fact, he has produced a series of DVDs on the feasts that have gone around the world. Biltz is also the author of Blood Moons and God's Day Timer. His research and theories have led to guest appearances on both radio and television as well as being featured on the covers of magazines.
Decoding the Antichrist and the End Times was released last month by Charisma House, which has published books that challenge, encourage, teach and equip Christians, including 14 New York Times' best-sellers.
Listen to the podcasts for interview with Mark Biltz.
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