Greetings to the Community. I come seeking advice from those who currently have much more knowledge about theology than probably I will ever have.

Yesterday morning I did this with pencil and paper:

C   =>   100 +
0   =>     0
V   =>     5
I   =>     1
D   =>   500

1   =>     1
9   =>     9
Total:   616

It was a simple sum, came out on the first try. I confess that right after doing it I was a little scared by how easy it was (and of course the meaning it has). I mean, occasionally I've come across articles where complicated mathematical operations are performed to reach certain conclusions. This was not the case.

The points that I am handling so far:

The number the beast is not a number in itself but a product of its name:

Revelation 13:17: so that no one can buy or sell who does not have the mark, that is, the name of the beast or the number of its name.


The dialectic around the number 616:

The new number 616 isn’t new, it’s old, that’s the point. It isn’t one man’s opinion either, it’s written as such in the two oldest known versions of the Bible. The Oxyrhynchus papyrus you mention, but it’s written too in the Codex Ephraemi Rescriptus, both as a number and text - ‘hexakosiai deka hex’ literally translated as six hundred and sixteen. This latter book is the last of the four uncial manuscripts of the Greek Bible named after Ephraem the Syrian.


My questions are:

  • Could "COVID-19" be the name of the beast?

  • Assuming for a second that the above is true: would the set of facts related to coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) faithfully correspond to the behavior and actions of the beast, described in detail throughout the book Revelations?

  • 2
    There is a textual issue in this part of Rev. Both 616 and 666 are witnessed to as readings, but the mere presence of readings, or their number, or even their earliness, is not an indicator of authenticity, as the texts are not coming to us in one way, or from one stream, or one region, or one generation, etc. Some have posited that depending on who or what the church transmitting this particular verse thought the beast was influenced the numeral, for example. Also, Revelation uses, virtually exclusively, symbolic language, where the vision is being described, not what the vision depicts. Mar 19, 2020 at 21:59
  • 1
    I found this article Ante-Nicene Fathers on the Number of the Beast to be worthy of reading to temper modern day speculation. Mar 19, 2020 at 22:07
  • 1
    This article makes a case for assigning it to Nero as well as the necessity to consider how John thinks in Hebrew, so the letters need to be transliterated into Hebrew first. Looks like Paul Chernoch had the same idea :-). Mar 19, 2020 at 22:14
  • 1
    COVID-19 seems to serve only as an instrument for the acceptance of RFID chips in the forehead or hand. The reason is, a paper money or a debit/credit card can be a source of transmitting the virus if the one who handle it was infected. The future of "buy & sell" in the Book of Revelation speak of a cashless transaction and everyone must accept a mark if they want access to foods & goods which the Beast who received the authority from the Dragon has the control. Mar 20, 2020 at 0:20
  • 1
    @itzsophia'svlogs Here in Canada, tapping your card on the payment device (via NFC) is quite the norm. There is no handing of your card to a person, and you don't have to press anything. This is much more feasible going trend than embedding RFID chip in the forehead ! Mar 20, 2020 at 2:14

1 Answer 1


The use of letters that form a word or phrase to represent numbers depends upon the language and alphabet used. Saint John would have written Revelation in Greek (or possibly Hebrew), not Latin. Thus Roman numerals are not what you should use. To make your point, you need to use the Greek Alphabet and the Greek translation of COVID-19.

  • 1
    In addition, COVID-19 is an acronym of the english phrase "corona virus disease 2019", which then is being interpreted as roman numerals. And it's not even interpretting the roman numerals correctly, as you ignore the dash, and have to interpret the letter O as the number zero, which I'm not certain even existed in roman numerals...
    – Korosia
    Mar 20, 2020 at 10:19
  • While I agree that COVID-19 has nothing to do with the mark of the beast and the number of its name, I don't agree that you shouldn't use Roman numerals just because it wasn't written in the original language. This was told to John by the angel in Greek, but that doesn't mean it is restricted to use only in Greek. Mar 20, 2020 at 13:46

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