Something that many people just do not understand is that we as Christians are sealed by the Holy Spirit of God. What does it mean to be sealed by the Holy Spirit?
- A seal indicates ownership . You don't place your seal on something that does not belong to you. Just as a brand on cattle distinguishes one farmer's cows from the other farmer's cows, a seal separates one's belongings. A seal indicates that God has distinguished us from others, that He has set us apart to Himself, for His own purpose.
A seal indicates something of worth. You do not seal just anything and everything, only those things that are important, or of value. Thus, being sealed by the Holy Spirit of God indicates that He has put a very high value upon us; we are very important to Him.
A seal indicates authenticity . A seal is recognized and accepted by anyone. It is a guarantee by the person doing the sealing that the thing sealed meets their criteria, or is up to their standards. it guarantees that what is sealed is the real thing.
A seal is a sign of higher authority, and as such, can be trusted . All authority in heaven and earth is given to Christ Jesus; when we are sealed by the Holy Spirit, it indicates that we are His, and He can be trusted.
A seal shows the irrevocable nature of our salvation . Once something is sealed, it will stay forever, until the seal is broken. We cannot break the seal of the Holy Spirit, however. We can grieve the Spirit, we can quench the Spirit, but we cannot break the seal of the Holy Spirit of God within us.
Think of canning jars of fresh, ripe fruit. The seals preserve the fruit by keeping in what you want to keep in, and keeping out the harmful bacteria that will cause the fruit to ruin. The seals protect the fruit: nothing else can get inside, and nothing that is inside is getting out. We are told that, when we are born again, we are sealed by the Holy Spirit, unto the day of redemption. The fruit in the jars cannot break the seal; neither can we break the seal of God's Holy Spirit.
Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God; Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts. II Cor. 1:21, 22
In these two verses we see four very great privileges, which God first bestowed upon the Corinthians: the establishing, anointing, and sealing of them, and giving the earnest of the Holy Spirit to them. Although these privileges were first given to the Corinthians, we know that God is unchanging; what He did then, He does now.
First, we are established by God Himself. To establish means to "settle or fix firmly; make stable or permanent ; to set up or install in a place or position; to put into effect permanently, as law." (Webster's Third New International Dictionary). Our establishment in the family of God, and in His promises, is the gracious work of God alone. We do not decide of our own initiative to join God's family; God establishes us as members of His family when we accept His Son as our Lord and Savior.
Secondly, our anointing is from God. To be anointed means to be chosen by Divine election. (Again, Webster's Third New International Dictionary). God chose us. He loves us dearly. We are precious to Him. We are, in fact, the apple of His eye. (See Zech. 2:8; and Psalm 17:8) The Bible tells us no one seeks God, but God seeks us. That is our anointing.
Thirdly, we are sealed by God: God's sealing of his children indicates the high value He places on us, and His loving esteem of us. What is sealed is deemed to be very precious: it implies something held safely and securely. Something that is sealed is safe and protected.. Something that is sealed is not in danger of being lost. A seal also shows ownership ; we belong to our Heavenly Father, who has set us apart to Himself, for His own purpose.
The fourth privilege is his giving the earnest of the Spirit in their hearts. Earnest money is a deposit; a promise of larger payment to come. There is a vast difference between a dollar, as a single piece of money, and a dollar that is an earnest of a greater sum. God gives us the earnest of the Holy Spirit as a guarantee or deposit of what is awaiting us. Glory!
In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise. Eph 1:13
Here the apostle Paul recounts the favours and privileges which we, as Gentiles, upon believing in Christ, were admitted to. Paul assures them, that in and through Christ they had obtained a right to this heavenly inheritance. Just as the Jews were given favors and privileges and promises by God, we are also heirs to all His promises through Jesus Christ.
They were sealed , by the sanctifying Spirit promised to the sons of God, which produced a real renovating change in their hearts and lives. The influence of the Holy Spirit upon the minds of Christians is evidence of their redemption. The Spirit was a pledge and earnest of what is yet to come. The Spirit also made them fit for their heavenly inheritance. The full inheritance will be received the last day, when (and not before) all believers shall receive complete redemption, and their bodies being raised, shall be reunited to their souls, and will then be made perfect and everlastingly happy.
And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Eph 4:30
The Holy Spirit, is essentially and infinitely holy in himself, is the author of all grace and holiness in us. Christians are not to grieve the Holy Spirit of God: because by it we are sealed to the day of redemption, until Jesus returns for His bride. We grieve the Holy Spirit when we do not heed his teachings, or ignore that small, still voice inside us.
We are not to grieve the Holy Spirit of God: because by Him we are sealed to the day of redemption.
Nevertheless the foundation of God stands sure, having this seal , The Lord knows them that are his. And, Let every one that names the name of Christ depart from iniquity. II Tim. 2:19
This verse tells us that Christ, the foundation of God, stands sure, despite apparent apostacy in the church. The seal is the covenant promise, or contract between two parties. This seal assures that the Lord knows those who belong to Him. The foundation of our hope, the basis of our belief, is Jesus Christ himself. Because of this seal, this assurance or guarantee, those who name the name of Christ, or call themselves Christians, ought to depart from all iniquity.
It is important for us to understand the permanent and lasting nature of our covenant with God. When He seals us, it is forever. His mark is upon us, identifying us as His own children, according to the promise.
And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. (Rom. 8:17)