Is this the Mark of the Beast ?
Yeah, I've studied this too. Thanks for asking my opinion. I agree that the Evil One is much more deceptive in everything. I find that people in power are too.
"And he causeth all..." The Greek "causeth" means "Make or Do"...and is used 579 times in NT. It could be forced, optional, a process, through centuries of time...whatever...it will be done.
"Mark" in Greek is, "a scratch or etching, i.e. stamp." Today we have an idea what possibilities exist. Many.
The "Beast" is a "Dangerous animal," and used 47 times in NT.
This control over humanity will be made or done. The mark may be forced on some. God is bigger than all of this and the key is "worshiping" the beast and if one has the choice, to not receive "the mark." Seriously, it may be mandatory or optional for a long time. It may be that as far as a 'mark' goes that even babies receive 'a mark' of the beast during this time. (The no option part of it combined with 'worshipping' the beast I think is key.)
Some may be 'forced' to receive the mark but they won't "worship" the beast...the verse before in context talks about people worshiping the beast and receiving the mark to come. It's said later in Revelation again those who "worship" the Beast. I think if someone is forced to receive the mark God knows it. This is something I keep seeing in Christ's teachings and in the Bible as I look harder at it--deception.
But everyone has a choice not to worship a god they don't want. Not being able to 'buy or sell' do I need to say anything? I'm sure you experience this yourself. Gone are the land areas without security, small farms/ranches, and etc. to live on. One has to have millions of dollars to buy a small farm. So this system is setting up and already here in my opinion.
I have read different points of view where they thought the beast was a system, a one world government, a one world religion, a system not a person, a person of great power who rises up, and etc. I'll tell you that there is no one world government, for example Jesus said "Nation again nation, kingdom against kingdom," and Revelation has the same examples likened to the book of Daniel with kingdoms and kings and even says you must prophecy about, "Many nations, peoples, languages...etc." The lamb that spoke as a dragon is part of the religious deception that will be promoted with signs, miracles, and wonders that will deceive the whole earth except those who already believed and knew.
I agree with you the 'beast' is not that stupid and here comes some of my thoughts. This whole thing may be an option for decades if not centuries, a slow on-going process that rewards people to get the 'mark' by offering better deals, success, coupons, rewards, and on and on. This may be a slow adoption UNTIL it will be you have a choice, Worship the beast OR you can't buy or sell. Totally at the mercy of the system or becoming a homeless scavanger.
So it's all going to happen through a single person, a system, some method that will come, a complete technology controlled system, or whatever. John in Revelation keeps talking about "The image of the beast...could cause it to speak" Television/Media/Computer and future technologies are sure an "image of the beast." One more outrageous possibility, the BEAST might be us...mankind. We end up worshipping man or ourselves whose image we worship.
So I'm firm on some things but realize no one has the answer regarding this. I humble myself before God and the Bible and accept it and know on these kinds of things, who knows? Keep watch and awake about what's going on in our lives and what's happening around us. That's kind of exciting.