For centuries the great controversy between Christ and Satan has continued. That controversy began in heaven when Lucifer rebelled against God. Read Revelation 12:7-9. It is evident from the words of Jesus that Satan will be successful in leading nearly the whole world to follow him. Read Matthew 7:13,14. However a few will respond to God’s invitation to “Fear God and give glory to Him;….and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water.” Revelation 14:7.
1. In whose image was man made?
“Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” Genesis 1:26
NOTE: Just as long as Adam looked to God and trusted Him he reflected the Creator’s image. The devil came to Adam and Eve to do away with the image of God and to make them like him.
2. Through whom is God’s image restored to man?
“Whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.” 2 Corinthians 4:4
NOTE: Anyone who comes to God in faith will be changed into God’s image by the Holy Spirit. Read 2 Corinthians 3:18.
3. What is a seal?
It is a device which reproduces an image in a soft substance, like wax or clay. Anciently rulers had rings which were used as seals. Today most legal documents require the seal of a notary public to be binding.4. By whom is the sealing accomplished?
“….after….having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise.” Ephesians 1:13
5. Under the New Covenant where is God’s law placed?
“For this is the covenant that I will make….I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts.” Hebrews 8:10. The law is love (Romans 13:8) and love is placed in our hearts by the Holy Spirit (Romans 5:5)
6. What condition will Christ produce in His church?
“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.” Ephesians 5:25-27.
7. How does John describe God’s people at the end of time?
“Then I looked, and behold, a Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with Him one hundred and forty-four thousand, having His Father’s name written on their foreheads….These are the ones who were not defiled with women, for they are virgins. These are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever He goes. These were redeemed from among men, being firstfruits to God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no deceit, for they are without fault before the throne of God.” Revelation 14:1, 4, 5.
NOTE: The seal and the divine name cannot be separate. A seal on an object testifies to its ownership. Read 2 Timothy 2:19. This is a mark of truth, the mark of God’s approval. Those who are thus sealed are like Christ in character.
8. What is another illustration of the work of the Holy Spirit and its effect on the character of God’s people?
“Let us know, let us pursue the knowledge of the Lord. His going forth is established as the morning; He will come to us like the rain, like the latter and former rain to the earth.” Hosea 6:3
“For I will pour water on him who is thirsty, and floods on the dry ground; I will pour My Spirit on your descendants, and My blessing on your offspring.” Isaiah 44:3
NOTE: In Palestine the early rain caused the seed to germinate while the latter rain near the close of the growing season caused the grain to mature and prepared it for the harvest. The early rain of the Holy Spirit enables a person to grow in grace. The final outpouring of God’s Spirit in the latter rain will prepare his church for the harvest. In their experience God’s law will be sealed in the minds of God’s followers.
9. When God rested on the seventh-day Sabbath in the beginning what was the result?
“For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day He rested and was refreshed.” Exodus 31:17
10. How can I enter into God’s rest?
I must accept the perfect, finished work of Christ. I must come before the throne of grace and He will give me the needed help in my conflict with Satan. Read Hebrews 4:16. The penitent sinner accepts Christ as Lord of his life and he willingly gives his allegiance and obedience to God to be both molded and used by Him in His service.
11. What has God especially designated as the sign of His relation to His people? What is His seal?
It is His holy Sabbath day. Only the Sabbath commandment contains the essential elements of an official seal and gives authority to the ten commandment law. It gives the name and titleof God and shows His right to direct the obedience of the human race. Read Exodus 20:8-11.
Name: “The Lord your God”
Title: Creator of “ heaven and earth”
The Sabbath is a sign of God’s total activity, His creative power in the universe, and his re-creative power in the heart. Read 2 Timothy 2:19. The seal of God’s approval when placed on a person will indicate he has the victory over sin and it will be evident that he belongs to God. According to Revelation 7:1-3 we are living in the sealing time. God’s people will be commandment keepers. The Sabbath is the outward sign, the mark or the seal distinguishing them from those who do not obey or recognise the commandments of God. But to God’s people the Sabbath means sanctification. It is the sign between them and God that marks them as belonging to God.