Revelation Seal Mark
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33. Revelation Seal Mark
Revelation 7.1-8

"After this, I saw four angels standing at the earth's four corners, holding back the earth's four winds to prevent any wind from blowing on the land, sea, or any tree. Then I saw another angel coming up from the east, having the living God's seal. He called out in a loud voice to the four angels given the power to harm the land and the sea, 'Do not harm the land or the sea or the trees until we put a seal on our God's servants' foreheads.' Then I heard the number of those sealed: 144,000 from all Israel tribes. From Judah's tribe 12,000 were sealed, from Reuben's tribe 12,000, from Gad's tribe 12,000, from Asher's tribe 12,000, from Naphtali's tribe 12,000, from Manasseh's tribe 12,000, from Simeon's tribe 12,000, from Levi's tribe 12,000, from Issachar's tribe 12,000, from Zebulun's tribe 12,000, from Joseph's tribe 12,000, from Benjamin's tribe 12,000." (Revelation 7.1-8)✞

Why did they seal documents?

Ancient Wax Signet Ring SealA seal mark or document seal mark identifies and protects its contents. A broken seal indicates an information leak. Document seals appear on wills, title deeds, or even on people. Some commentators suggest an invisible seal, but that is doubtful because it often reveals a person's identity. A signet ring's wax impression or stamp also indicates confidential contents that belong to a person. Daniel 12.4 mentions scroll seals, "But you, Daniel, roll up and seal the words of the scroll until the time of the end. Many will go here and there to increase knowledge."

What was an owner's seal?

In the Roman Empire, an owner's stamp sealed each ceramic amphora used to carry wine or oil. Archeologists have identified over two hundred different unique inscriptions on amphorae. The word "amphora" comes from a Greek compound word, "amphi" for "on both sides" and "pherein," meaning "to carry." An amphora is a ceramic container with double-sided handles used to carry a liquid. The stamped top of the amphora contains production, content, ownership (often by the Emperor,) and subsequent marketing information. Similarly, God places his seal mark on his faithful followers' foreheads, identifying them as his and guaranteeing his care over their souls.

Does God seal Christians?

Jesus Baptism WatersAs circumcision is the loyal Jew's seal mark, and baptism is the Christian's seal mark, the seal mark in Revelation signifies and protects God's faithful followers. Our physical bodies may be beaten, maimed, or even destroyed, but nothing can remove our souls' seal by God. We are protected because we are supremely valuable to him.

What is the beast's seal mark?

Alpha seal markA parallel to the "Revelation seal mark" is the beast's mark in Revelation 13.16, which reads, "It (the beast) also forced all people, great and small, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hands or foreheads." God's mark and that of Satan places people in two very distinct camps, those subject to love in Jesus Christ's service and those owned by Satan.

How many Israeli tribal seals are there?

NumbersThe Israeli tribal seals number twelve thousand per tribe, totaling one hundred and forty-four thousand. Each of Israel's twelve tribes has its tribal seal. Probably the best known are Judah's tribe and the Lion. The House of Israel's 12 tribes are descendants of the Patriarch Jacob and his two wives, Leah and Rachel, and his two concubines, Zilpah and Bilhah. Leah had six sons — Reuben, Simon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, and Zebulun. The other women had two sons each. Rachel's were Joseph and Benjamin; Zilpah's, Gad and Asher; and Bilhah's, Dan and Naphtali." The Israeli tribal seal's number is "one hundred and forty-four thousand," twelve by twelve by one thousand, which in itself is a symbolically complete number. God will bring all his followers with seals safely to himself, and no one overlooked or left behind. The twelve sealed tribes do not correspond with any of eighteen Old Testament lists. This list is followed by "there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb." God in Revelation 7.7b includes all of God's faithful followers in this "great multitude.✞

How were the Levites rewarded?

Star of David of IsraelJudah from the tribe of David is listed first. The Levites are God's priests in the Temple with no tribal allotment, but here they are rewarded for their faithfulness by being included as a tribe. The list omits Dan'stribe no doubt because of its unfaithfulness, as affirmed by Genesis 49.17, "Dan will be a roadside snake, a pathway viper, that bites the horse's heels so that its rider tumbles backward." They may have omitted Dan because it adopted pagan practices. The most famous Danite was Sampson. This new Israel embraces the faithful from every nation, race, people, and tongue - an army of true believers and Israel tribes sealed for God's service.

"Revelation Seal Mark"
by Ron Meacock © 2021

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