Please don't misunderstand me, I don't want people primed to take the mark because they've come under a delusion, especially on my part. The Antichrist is [is it prophetic that I said is instead of will be? You be the judge! ;-) ] an inherently evil person and his mark seals one's doom. In my view of eschatology, only Jews will actually face that choice; nonetheless, I think we need to understand that the Antichrist and his kingdom are just part of the fabric of what God has prepared for the conclusion of this current economy.
Since the Antichrist is a precursor to the return of Christ, he will arise at the time of God's choosing, and will mark the conclusion of God's work in human history. If you give it any thought, opposing the rise of the Antichrist is not far removed, if removed at all, from opposing the return of Christ. Who'd want to do that?
So, we'll do as we have tried to do through time--what's right, what's biblical, what's sensible--and the Antichrist will come any way. He'll still take over everything and the world will go to hell in a handbasket, it's unavoidable. God did not misspeak in revealing the sequence of events leading to the end, so there are some things we just need to resign ourselves to. Why spit into the wind?
This world is not now and never has been the home to any who followed Christ. Focusing our energies here as if it were has sapped the Spirit from the bulk of the church for the bulk of the Church Age. It has destroyed the witness of the American church since 1980. Assemblies of God minister, John Keurt once quipped when asked about his philosophy of financing a building campaign, "take out a big mortgage and leave it to the Antichrist." Like it or not, we're leaving the world and all that's in it to the Antichrist, maybe we should start living like it.