Scripture Reading: Ephesians 1:3-14
“In Him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of our salvation, and believed in Him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of His glory.” (Ephesians 1:13,14)
Paul is using the imagery of a seal in this passage. In ancient times seals were used to guarantee the genuine character of a document, to mark ownership, and to protect against tampering or harm. Paul is saying that the indwelling Holy Spirit is God’s seal. First, the Holy Spirit within us authenticates that our character before God is holy and blameless because of the work of Jesus Christ. Second, the indwelling Spirit marks the fact that we are now owned by God — “You are not your own; you were bought with a price” (I Corinthians 6:19b,20a). Third, the indwelling protects us from whatever we face and assures us that no one nor anything can snatch us from the hands of our Savior. This means that we were eternally secure and that we have been guaranteed an inheritance.
The Holy Spirit is the first installment (the down payment, the guarantee) of the glory to come. God has an eternal plan to restore all creation and to place it under the headship of Jesus Christ. All of history is moving toward the consummation of all things when Jesus returns again. We are destined to be in glory with Christ. We will, in fact, be glorified with Christ!
God has promised us an inheritance — “And into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade — kept in heaven for you who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation is ready to be revealed in the last time” (I Peter 1:4,5). The full inheritance is God’s salvation of His people when they live in His very presence as holy and blameless people in a relationship of love forever. The Holy Spirit is the deposit. He guarantees that we will receive the inheritance.
The indwelling Holy Spirit means that we are never alone. We are marked in Christ with the seal of the Spirit. When we feel lonely, remember that we are not alone; the Spirit of God is with us. When we are afraid, we must claim God’s promise — “Fear not, for I am with you.” When we face overwhelming difficulties, we need to remember these words — “It is no longer I who live but it is Christ who lives in me.” When the strongest temptations come, let us know that the Spirit of God is within us and He will give us strength. We are never alone; God is with us!
O Holy Spirit, I rest in Your presence within me. I know that I am never alone. I have been sealed by You and I am eternally secure. I look forward to the promised inheritance which You guarantee that I will receive one day. Enable me to practice Your presence in my life and to walk according to Your ways.
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