By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News
STOCKHOLM (Worthy News) – A Swedish firm producing injectable microchips for humans entered the New Year wishing that its product would be used globally as a COVID-19 health pass, despite worries among Christians.
DSruptive Subdermals is pleased that Sweden already has many early adopters of its tiny electronic implant, carrying health and other private information.
Thousands of Swedes already opted to have a microchip the size of a grain of rice implanted under their skin, storing COVID-19 vaccine passport details and other personal data.
Supporters of the technology say it eliminates the need to remember key fobs, business cards, public transport cards, and now, vaccine passes. They also believe it will help tackle the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic amid concerns about new variants.
“I have a chip implant in my arm, and I have programmed the chip so that I have my COVID passport on the chip,” said Hannes Sjoblad, the firm’s enthusiastic managing director.
“The reason is that I always want to have it accessible. And when I read my chip, I just swipe my phone on the chip, and then I unlock it, and it opens up,” he added, showing how his vaccine certificate appeared on his phone.
Christians across the world are divided over the issue. U.S. Evangelist Franklin Graham doesn’t believe that the “vaccine passport” chip is the mark of the beast in the anti-Christ era cited in the Bible.
But the 69-year-old son of the late evangelist Billy Graham suggested that the microchip teaches Christians to remain alert of what is about to unfold. “The Bible tells us that in the end times, there will be a one-world system,” stressed Graham, who heads the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.
He noted that Revelation 13:16-17 says, ‘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…’”
Franklin Graham admitted that the Swedish company’s “vaccine passport chip” could eventually be required to enter restaurants or businesses, fly commercially, etc.”
However, “I personally do not think this particular chip is the mark the Bible talks about, but it does make you think how close we may be.”
Yet, at least some American Christians remain worried after a Wisconsin-based provider of self-service breakroom vending machines began injecting workers with microchips in 2017.
Pastor Dave Doyle from Hope Christian Fellowship Church in Iowa said the technology reminded him of the 666 “mark of the Beast” from Revelation 13:16.
“I take microchipping as a form of the mark. There are many pieces of the mark, and then again, all these pieces of the mark are designed to control,” he said in a 2017 interview.
Dole referred to Three Square Market, where dozens of employees use these chips to enter their work building, log in to a computer, or buy things from the company vending machine.
The ethical and Christian debate didn’t seem to worry Sjoblad. “A chip implant costs a hundred euros ($113) if you want to buy the more advanced versions. But at the same time, a chip implant you can use for twenty, thirty, forty years,” he added in published remarks.
Sweden is also a stronghold of so-called biohackers. They are convinced that humans will become ever more entangled with technology in the future.
Already phone applications are being rolled out offering relations with a “Replika,” an artificial intelligence companion resembling a human ‘living’ in the device, Worthy News learned.
While he acknowledged that many people see chip implants as part of a scary development or surveillance technology, Sjoblad said they are nothing more than an identification tool.
“They don’t have a battery; they cannot transmit the signal by themselves, so they’re basically asleep. They can never tell your location; they are only activated when you touch them with your smartphone,” Sjoblad added.
Skeptics say that can change as world governments seek more control, officially to tackle pandemics and other perceived threats to human existence.
Last month European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen, the European Union’s executive, said it was time to “think about mandatory vaccination.”
She also supports obligatory health passes showing COVID-19 vaccination or recovery of the disease.
Von der Leyen says stricter measures are necessary to halt COVID-19’s fast-spreading Omicron variant amid another difficult winter in Europe.
And the carrying of microchips is increasingly encouraged by authorities and managers as part of these and other life-changing policies.
However, “All implants are voluntary. And if someone were to make them compulsory for prisoners or elderly people in retirement homes, you will find me on the barricades,” Sjoblad pledged.
“I think it’s very much part of my own integrity to have myself chipped and keep my personal data there with me,” claimed Amanda Back, a Stockholm resident who has implanted the chip developed by DSruptive Subdermals.
“I actually feel that it’s even more controlled on my end.” But that may change, critics fear.
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