Week of May 23
You Are Sealed and Guaranteed by God's Spirit!
…In whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise.
- Ephesians 1:13
I couldn't believe what I had just heard on the telephone! A beautiful and very expensive piece of Russian porcelain that we had sent to a dear friend in the United States had arrived broken in pieces! It was so broken that it couldn't be put back together again. What made this situation even worse was that this was already our third attempt to mail this piece of porcelain - and every single time we had tried, it had arrived broken!
We were so frustrated with these attempts to mail this porcelain that we decided to personally carry it on the airplane with us the next time we flew our transatlantic flight to see this friend on the other side of the world. Although it was a huge piece of porcelain and very difficult to carry, the only way we could be assured that it would arrive safely was to personally and gently carry this delicate object ourselves. Finally, the day came when we boxed up the large porcelain, packing lots of stuffing around it. We brought that bulky box with its fragile cargo onto each airplane that carried us to our destination. When we finally delivered the exquisite gift to our friend, she rejoiced to see that it had finally arrived at her house without a single broken piece and without a scratch!
If you've ever received something in the mail that was broken, you can probably relate to this story. Or have you ever ordered something by mail that you were so excited to receive but that was a big disappointment when it arrived? When you opened the package, did you find out it was so poorly made that you had to return it to the sender?
Or have you ever ordered a product with the promise of a certain delivery date, only to have the arrival of the package delayed so many times that you nearly lost your temper with the company from whom you ordered it? All these scenarios can leave you feeling very frustrated and disappointed, can't they?
Well, in the first chapter of Ephesians, Paul lets us know that God Himself is waiting for a special delivery package! He is so excited to receive this package that He has personally done everything necessary to ensure that it will arrive intact, complete, with no defects, and without a single piece of it being broken or scratched. He has also done everything necessary to make sure it arrives right on time!
Notice that Ephesians 1:13 says, "...In whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise." Today I want to draw your attention to the word "sealed." This word comes from the Greek word sphragidzo. This is extremely important.
Seals were used in New Testament times to guarantee that the contents of a package were complete and not defective. Such a seal would only be placed on a package if the product had been thoroughly examined and inspected to make sure it was fully intact and complete. If it were broken, defective, or faulty, the guarantor would not put his seal upon it. The seal was proof that the product was impeccable.
Such seals were also put on parcels before being mailed to their final destination. Parcels bearing such "seals" were usually sent by extremely wealthy individuals. These seals, which bore the insignia of a particular wealthy or famous person, meant that this package was to be treated with the utmost, tender care.
To seal such a package, the sender poured hot wax onto the flap of the envelope or the string that bound the box. Afterward, he pressed his insignia into the wax, leaving a visible, distinctive mark. This insignia alerted everyone that the package was the possession of a wealthy or powerful person. Therefore, the "seal" guaranteed that the package would make it to its final destination.
Well, the Bible says you are "sealed" with the Holy Spirit of promise. This means there is nothing incomplete or defective about you. When God made you new, the last thing He did was check you out, thoroughly examining and inspecting you before placing His final seal of approval on your heart.
In Ephesians 1:13, Paul says that if you belong to the Lord, you have been "sealed" with the Holy Spirit. For God to "seal" you with His Spirit means that you are God-approved! Your contents are intact and in order. You should never again view yourself as if you are "damaged goods." You're not damaged! You are approved, endorsed, recognized, affirmed, sanctified, and notarized by the Spirit of God. You have the seal of God's approval, so start acting as if you're special. God thinks you are very special!
The "seal of the Holy Spirit" is also the guarantee that you're going to make it to your final destination. God is the One who inspected and packaged you. He also put His guarantee on you to ensure that you're delivered to His ordained destination for your life. That means you should never complain that you're not going to make it. Of course you're going to make it. God will see to it!
When demons see the seal of God on your life, they know they are not to mess around with that package. You're a special package, to be treated with special care. Angels watch over you and guard your safe passage from one place to the next. Evil forces may attempt to delay the timing of your arrival, but the seal of God in your heart guarantees that you'll get there.
An interpretive translation of Ephesians 1:13 could be the following:
"...The moment you believed, God thoroughly examined and inspected you to make sure that you were fully intact and complete. Because He found nothing in you broken, defective, or faulty, God put His seal upon you - the ultimate proof that He found you to be impeccable. That seal meant you were approved, endorsed, recognized, affirmed, sanctified, and notarized by the Spirit of God. It was His guarantee that you are going to make it to your final destination."
This should tell you how intensely God longs for your arrival in Heaven! He Himself has inspected you, sealed you, and guaranteed you. Now He watches over you to see that you make it all the way into His Presence, where He eagerly anticipates that day when He will see you face to face. So whenever the devil speaks to your mind or your flesh screams that you're not going to make it, rebuke those lies and point to the seal God has placed on your life!
MY PRAYER FOR TODAY
Lord, I am so thankful today that You have sealed and guaranteed me! Forgive me for those times when I speak badly of myself, judge and condemn myself, or put myself down in front of others. I should be proud of and thankful for who I am, because the blood of Jesus has cleansed and redeemed me. You were so convinced that I was free of defects that You sealed me with Your Spirit, giving me Your ultimate seal of approval. Help me appreciate the great work You have done inside me! Thank You for guaranteeing, overseeing, and assuring me that no force on earth and no demonic powers can stop me from arriving at my ultimate heavenly destination!
I pray this in Jesus' name!
MY CONFESSION FOR TODAY
I confess that I am "sealed" with the Holy Spirit. My contents are intact and in order. I am approved, endorsed, recognized, affirmed, sanctified, and notarized by the Spirit of God. Because God has "sealed" me, it is guaranteed that I am going to make it to my final destination. When demons see the seal of God on me, they know they are not to mess around with me! I am a special package, to be treated with special care. Angels watch over me and guard my safe passage from one place to the next. Evil forces may attempt to mess with me, but the seal of God guarantees that I'll arrive safely and complete!
I declare this by faith in Jesus' name!
QUESTIONS FOR YOU TO CONSIDER
- Do you view yourself as "damaged goods," or do you see yourself as approved, endorsed, recognized, affirmed, sanctified, and notarized by the Spirit of God?
- If you don't view yourself the way God does, what scriptures can you begin to memorize, meditate on, and confess to renew your mind to the truth of who Jesus Christ has made you to be? Why not make a list of those scriptures and put them in a visible place where you can frequently be reminded of them?
- Do you know some believers who are struggling with their self-image and could use a little boost from a friend to help them think higher of themselves? If so, why don't you take a little time today to go out of your way and let them know that they are approved and endorsed by God?