"Study to [show] thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth" 2 Timothy 2:15

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Mark 7:6,7,8 

" ...as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men..."

Teaching Series

 

As believers, it is vitally important that we live our lives totally dependent on God.  We are to trust God and look to Him in every situation we face.  The essence of the world’s system is that man tries to meet his own needs without God.  In the Kingdom of God, we rely on God's truth and his truth alone, we do what he  tells us to do and say what He tells us to say and rely on Him to meet our needs.  In this powerful series, you will gain knowledge and understanding of how to rid your life of tradition that has been taught and get every need you have met by depending completely on God and his truth!

"The Word of God versus Men's Traditions"

Colossians 2:8

“Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit,

after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.”

Matthew 15:9

But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

Matthew 7: 21-23

21 "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. 22 "Many will say to Me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?' 23 "And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you;

DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.

 

 

 

Introduction

Webster’s Dictionary gives as one definition of tradition: “The delivery of opinions, doctrines, practices, rites, and customs from ancestors to posterity; the transmission of any opinions or practice from forefathers to descendants by oral communication.” This thought is in sharp contrast to the Scriptures, in which it is made clear that religious doctrines, practices, and rites come only by the direct instruction of God, or through his specially chosen instruments. In the New Testament, the word translated “tradition”—the practice Yahshua condemned—is the Greek word paradosis. According to Prof. Strong, this word specifically has reference to “the Jewish traditionary law.”

Yahshua Was Very Outspoken in condemning the “tradition of the elders” as set forth by the scribes and the Pharisees of his day. He was asked by them why his disciples transgressed these traditions, and his reply was, in part, “Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?” (Matt. 15:2,3) Thus Jesus indicates that the traditions of men are often contrary to the commandment, or Word of God.

The “Jewish traditionary law” was that mass of interpretations and adjustments which began to be formulated by the elders of Israel at an early date, and which was transmitted orally and added to from generation to generation. So far as we know there were no written versions of these traditions in Jesus’ day. It was in the second century that these oral traditions began to be put into written form. Out of these written versions of tradition there finally developed the Jewish Talmud. However, not all Israelites shared the views of the scribes and Pharisees with respect to tradition. The Jewish historian Josephus wrote:

“What I would now explain is this, that the Pharisees have delivered to the people a great many observances by succession from their fathers, which are not written in the laws of Moses; and for that reason it is that the Sadducees reject them, and say that we are to esteem those observances to be obligatory which are in the written word, but are not to observe what are derived from the tradition of our forefathers.”

Controversy

The controversy as to the relative value of the written Word of God and the tradition of men, which began in ancient times and was highlighted by Yahshua’s firm stand against tradition, has continued to our day. One of the crucial issues today confronting many of the large denominations of Christendom is whether or not their traditions should be given equal authority with the written Word of God in their teachings. As church leaders deal with this, the necessity arises of perhaps even setting aside the Word of God in some cases, where it conflicts with their long-held traditions.

As shown by our theme scripture, the Apostle Paul, in the days of the Early Church, found it necessary to counsel the brethren to resist the influence of tradition. The traditions Paul spoke of that were “not after Christ” and which wrought the greatest harm during that time were likely those related to false notions concerning the place the Jewish Law should occupy in the beliefs and practices of Christians.

The Apostle Peter wrote, “Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers.” (I Pet. 1:18) Here, Peter emphasizes that neither the world’s wealth nor the foolish conduct enjoined upon them by the traditions received from their fathers had purchased their redemption, but they were redeemed “with the precious blood of Christ.” vs. 19

In Galatians 1:14, Paul speaks of his former zeal for the traditions of his fathers. We quote: “[I] profited in the Jews’ religion above many my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.” Now, however, Paul was zealous only for the Gospel of Christ, and this zeal was even greater than it had previously been for tradition.

As we have noted, the word “tradition” simply implies the passing along of ideas to others by word of mouth. Thus, the word itself does not suggest anything necessarily evil. Paul, in fact, uses it in reference to his own teachings of the Gospel. He says, “Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.” (II Thess. 2:15) Here Paul uses the Greek word translated “traditions” as applying to his own inspired teachings which he had passed on to the brethren by word of mouth and by letter. However, since Paul spoke and wrote under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, his teachings were a part of God’s message to his people, and not the opinions of men.

Paul also used the word “tradition” in a good sense in II Thessalonians 3:6, which reads, “Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Yahshua Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us.” Here again the “tradition” Paul refers to is his own teachings, and therefore inspired by God’s Holy Spirit.

 

HUMAN TRADITIONS

The traditions condemned by Yahshua and the apostles are those of purely human origin. The specific traditions with which they dealt at that time pertained to the Law. Today there are many philosophies pertaining to the Gospel of Christ which have developed throughout the centuries, and which eventually have become accepted by many as of equal importance to the Word of God. As the definition of the word implies, these traditions started as opinions which were passed along to others orally, sometimes over many generations. Finally they achieved dignity and a semblance of authority by being published in written form.

However, human tradition, unsupported by the teachings of the Bible, no matter how old, how venerable, or how seemingly reasonable, should be given no authority by the dedicated child of God and sincere student of the Bible. The Lord’s true people will only give heed to the instructions of his Word, which states, “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.”—Isa. 8:20

THOROUGHLY FURNISHED

The Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy, saying, “All Scripture, divinely inspired, is indeed profitable for Teaching, for Conviction, for Correction, for that Discipline which is in Righteousness; so that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly fitted for Every good Work.” (II Tim. 3:16,17. Here the Apostle Paul clearly emphasizes that the Lord’s people need not look outside the Word of God for authoritative instructions in order to be acceptable servants to the Lord.

Paul again wrote to Timothy, “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (II Tim. 2:15) To be workmen pleasing to God, it is essential only that we rightly divide the Word of truth and apply its precepts in our lives as we daily walk in the narrow way of sacrifice. It is not necessary to harmonize the Word of God with traditions. Some traditions may be quite in harmony with the Word of God, but most traditions are not, and these should give us no concern in our “rightly dividing the word of truth.”

INFALLIBILITY

As the great falling away from the faith foretold by the Apostle Paul developed, the tendency grew to impart authority to certain outstanding leaders in the church. The bishop of Rome received the largest share of this authority. In due course, it seemed reasonable to his supporters to confer infallibility upon him and to regard him as the vicegerent of Christ, that is, in place of Christ. This tradition soon became a church-approved doctrine, but it has no support whatever in the Word of God.

The only truly infallible teachings, so far as the humble Christian is concerned, are those contained in the written Word of God. God has so overruled the matter that, as Paul declared, the Scriptures given by inspiration are sufficient to make one wise unto salvation. We know that it is in the providence of God that he has seen to it that his Word of truth has come down to us in written form. It does not depend upon oral transmission, as is true with the beginning of all traditions. Oral testimony can be forgotten, distorted, or wrested, but not the written Word of God.

True, we do not have the original manuscripts of the Bible, as written by those who were inspired by God. We have to depend upon translations, which at times are less than perfect. Today, however, in the Lord’s providence, we have Greek and Hebrew concordances and lexicons which enable us to check the accuracy of translations. These helps are available in printed form as well as in computer software versions. This has proved to be a great blessing to the Lord’s people, and has resulted in a clearer and more blessed understanding of God’s great plan of salvation.

Revelation 22:18,19 contains a warning against adding to or taking away from the Word of God. While this warning applies particularly to the Book of Revelation, without doubt God is equally concerned with respect to his entire written Word. He wants his people to be meek and humble in their approach to his Word. When he speaks, he rejoices to have his people take heed to what he says and to order their lives accordingly. This is one of the vital tests the Lord imposes upon all his consecrated people. They have dedicated themselves to do his will, and his will is expressed through his written Word. Are we truly following that Word, or are we in part giving heed to the precepts and traditions of men?

THE NOBLE BEREANS

The Apostle Paul was one of the inspired servants of God who was used greatly in helping to provide his written Word to those in the Early Church. Paul rejoiced when he met those who insisted that even his teachings be tested as to their harmony with the inspired Scriptures already written. He indicates this in telling of his experiences with a group in a synagogue in Berea to whom he presented the Gospel. He said of these that they “were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.”—Acts 17:11

In addition to searching the Scriptures for proof of what Paul preached to them, these Bereans were noble also in the fact that they received the Word of God “with all readiness of mind.” This is an important quality for all those who would be pleasing to the Heavenly Father. The disposition to turn a deaf ear to clear statements of the Word of God, and to be guided instead by human philosophy and tradition, cannot be pleasing to the Lord. Let us endeavor to be among those who “tremble” reverently at his Word.—Isa. 66:5

HELPERS

The Lord, in his providence, has provided that his people should assist each other in the understanding of the sacred and infallible Word of truth. We all have opportunities and responsibilities along this line. The Apostle Paul speaks that some of the brethren may serve as teachers, some as evangelists, and some as pastors. (Eph. 4:11) In this regard, the Lord in his love provided a special servant for his people in this Harvest period of the Gospel Age, for which we are duly grateful.

Throughout the Gospel Age, the oral and written assistance to the church provided by these helpers occupies a different position than do the writings contained directly in the inspired Word of God. These helpers are not, nor have they ever claimed to be, the sources of truth with respect to the divine plan. Rather, they have served to call attention to the glorious doctrines of present truth as they are set forth in the inspired Word. If Paul, although an inspired apostle, considered the Bereans to be noble because they made sure that what he taught them was supported by the infallible Scriptures, how much more important it is for us to make sure that what we are taught by those not inspired, as was Paul, is indeed supported by a “thus saith the Lord.”

SCRIPTURAL INTERPRETATIONS

Speaking of the experiences of natural Israel, the Apostle Paul wrote, “Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world [ages, WED] are come.” (I Cor. 10:11) Some have taken this statement by Paul to mean that everything which happened to Israel is supposed to have a very deep significance which does not appear on the surface. Then they proceed to interpret these supposedly deep types according to whatever their opinions may indicate to be the meaning.

This is an unwarranted use of the Word of God. Paul clearly indicated what he meant by saying that the things which happened to Israel were examples. He explains that God dealt with all his ancient people in the same manner. Some responded to his providences in terms of faithful obedience, but others did not. They were “ensamples,” either good or bad, by how they responded. He wrote, “With many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness. Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted. Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents. Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer.”—vss. 5-10

Then follows the explanation already quoted that “all these things happened unto them for ensamples.” God permitted those things to happen to natural Israel in order to provide “ensamples,” or lessons, to his people of later times not to be disobedient as some of his people of old were disobedient. These lessons apply to the Lord’s people of today, those living at the “end of the age,” just as Paul expresses in this verse.

Many numbers and figures are mentioned in various parts of the Bible. Some have assumed that these are all intended in some way to be prophecies or to have special, deep, significance. As a result, many have disappointed themselves and others by their interpretations of these so-called prophetic “deep things,” which have not come to pass as they were once supposed. Although most often rightly intended, this is an unwise use of the Word of God. There are indeed wonderful and beautiful prophecies in the Bible, but the Bible itself identifies these as such, and gives us the proper keys for unlocking them. We must also remember that no prophecy can be fully understood in every detail until it is fulfilled. Paul wisely and humbly said, “Now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.”—I Cor. 13:12

THE FUNDAMENTALS

All the great fundamentals of the divine plan are clearly established in the Word of God by direct statements of Scripture. If we rightly divide the Word of truth we will discover the firm foundation upon which present truth is established. If, however, we try to harmonize these truths with opinions and traditions which are based merely on human philosophy, we will sooner or later experience disappointment, no matter how appealing the philosophy may be.

The Apostle Paul wrote, “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised.)” (Heb. 10:23) God is always faithful to his promises, but he takes no responsibility for the theories we may attach to his promises. We will never be disappointed when putting our faith in the promises of God, but could well be disappointed if we fail to see the difference between the promises of God and those theories and traditions which we may unwittingly associate with his promises. May the Word of God, and all the blessed features of the divine plan which are clearly revealed therein, become more and more precious to us as the days and years go by!

Biblical Examination

“Sorcerers”

Ezekiel 47:12King (KJV)

12 And by the river upon the bank thereof, on this side and on that side, shall grow all trees for meat, whose leaf shall not fade, neither shall the fruit thereof be consumed: it shall bring forth new fruit according to his months, because their waters they issued out of the sanctuary: and the fruit thereof shall be for meat, and the leaf thereof for medicine.

"For by thy sorceries (pharmacea) were all nations deceived. And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth". Rev. 18:23, 24

 

Introduction

In order to focus our minds on this study, let us begin by examining the written text of Revelations 18: 20- 24…

20 Rejoice over her, thou heaven, and ye holy apostles and prophets; for God hath avenged you on her.

21 And a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, Thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found no more at all.

22 And the voice of harpers, and musicians, and of pipers, and trumpeters, shall be heard no more at all in thee; and no craftsman, of whatsoever craft he be, shall be found any more in thee; and the sound of a millstone shall be heard no more at all in thee;

23 And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived.

24 And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth.

 

Have you ever noticed the huge surge of desire and longing in people to get back to the natural for our healing and medicine? The FDA combined with the drug industry and the media have almost totally erased this knowledge from our minds, and worse yet from our spirits. The FDA may, someday, take the herbs out of the health food stores but even the FDA will never get rid of the weeds. Yes, believe it our not, the weeds are a gift from God and when God gives us something, no one can take it away.

 

Who were the Sorcerers?

The Bible condemns the use of poisons for medicine and labels it as sorcery, and very plainly tells us that true medicine is leaves. The common name used for medical leaves is herbs. Ps.104:14 says that He has given us "herbs for the service of man."

 

Almost prophetically, Thomas Jefferson gave us this warning: "If people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny." Remember, this statement was made about 100 years before there ever even was an FDA!

Do you believe for a minute that the government's healthcare plan (under any administration) is designed to help us live longer healthier lives? Do you know how easy it is for medical universities (funded by pharmaceutical companies) to convince new doctors that "drugs save lives"? Have you ever wondered what The Bible says about all this?

Strong's exhaustive concordance of the Bible, which lists every word in the Bible, lists the word "sorcery" as word #5332 and tells us that it is translated from the original Greek word "pharmakon." It gives the definition as: a drug i.e. a spell-giving potion, a druggist or pharmacist, a poisoner.

A pharmacist today has the same Greek title that he had at the time the New Testament was written 2000 years ago, and he is still doing the same thing: dealing in poisonous drugs!
The Bible says that "sorcery", or the use of poisonous drugs, has deceived all nations. "For by thy sorceries (pharmacea) were all nations deceived. And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth". (Rev. 18:23, 24)

All nations practice sorcery through the use of drugs, but they are deceived into thinking that it's right. God condemns the merchandising and use of poisonous drugs along with murder and idolatry. Read it in your own Bible. Study it for yourself. If you don't own a concordance, borrow one from your library and see it with your own eyes.

Look in Webster's 2nd Collegiate Dictionary published in 1980 under the word "pharmaceutical." The definition reads: "pharmaceutical" the practice of witchcraft or the use of poison.

The very first place the word "medicine" is used in the Bible is in Proverbs 17:22 and it says, "A merry heart doeth good, like a medicine." If medicine and drugs are the same thing, this would, at first glance, seem to reveal a contradiction in the Bible. This question is answered in the very next text listed in the concordance under medicine: EZ. 47:12, "The fruit thereof shall be for meat and the leaf thereof for medicine." The Bible is telling us that medicine is good and it tells us where to obtain it: from the leaves or what we commonly call "herbs".

A Funeral Service 

Hebrews Chapter 9

 

In the book of Hebrew chapter 9 verse 22 According to the Law, God had put certain rules to His people, and one of them was to sacrifice an animal for each sin. That is animal blood should have been shed for forgiveness. In fact, as Hebrew 9 verse 7 says that high priest went into the second tabernacle once a year with the blood of the animal to ask forgiveness first for his own sins and then for the sins of the people. Thus there was always animal blood shed for every sin. verse 22 is saying that under the law there was always animal bloodshed. But with the New Testament the blood of Jesus was shed for once and for all sins for all mankind who accept Him. One is called a Christian when he or she accepts Jesus of Nazareth as the Son of God, who was born as a human being by virgin Mary and He was crucified for our sins , and was raised the third day and He is now on the right side of the Father God, mediating for each believer. Soon, He will come back as a King.

Ephesians 1:10-14

10 That in the dispensation of the fullness of times he might gather together

in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth;

even in him:

11 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance,

being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: 12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.

13 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,

14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.

 

Introduction

Can a person saved by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ lose his salvation? What does the Bible teach regarding the nature of salvation? Is it held securely in God's hands, or is it conditional upon one's continual faithfulness? The answers to these questions are crucial in understanding the nature and extent of the human condition and salvation.

Scripture teaches that Jesus came to save those who are lost (Luke 19:10). Before anyone comes to Christ he is a lost sinner, separated from God and under His condemnation (John 3:36). The essential reason for this is our relationship to sin, which is any level of un-conformity with the character and will of God. Are we sinners because we sin, or do we sin because we are sinners? Scripture affirms that both are true. The Bible says that we are all guilty of personal acts and attitudes of sin (Ezekiel 18:20; Romans 3:23; 3:10-18; Mark 7:20-23). It also indicates that we are guilty because we are born with a sinful nature (Psalm 51:5), ultimately inherited from our ancestral father, Adam (Romans 5:12).

The penalty that is the result of our sin is eternal death. According to the Bible, the consequences of sin are too serious to overlook. Although God is not our enemy, He is our judge. As judge He cannot ignore our failure to "hit the target" with our lives. In Romans 6:23 we learn that "the wages of sin is death." Whenever we sin, we earn the wage of death. Since, according to Romans 3:23, every person is guilty of sin, every person is subject to the consequences of physical death. This falls upon humankind as the result of Adam's sin (Romans 5:12-14); spiritual death, a condition transmitted to us from Adam through our ancestors (Ephesians 2:1, 5); and eternal death in the lake of fire (Revelation 20:11-15).

To summarize at this point, Scripture describes our condition before believing in Jesus Christ as being under the wrath of God and destined for hell.

"So Jesus answered them and said, My teaching is not Mine, but His who sent Me. If anyone is willing to do His will, he will know of the teaching, whether it is of God or whether I speak from Myself." (John 7:16-17).

"And He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation, that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us." (Acts 17:26-27)

God does provide each person born into this world with an awareness of His existence and a genuine opportunity to exercise a choice with respect to Him (Romans 1:18-22; Acts 17:22-30) bears wittiness to this. But can anyone choose Christ on his own? No, because we all are spiritually dead apart from God and unable and unwilling to choose Him (Romans 8:7-8; Ephesians 2:1). In fact, the unregenerate person naturally uses the genuine opportunity to exercise a choice with respect to God to run away from Him rather than to seek Him (Romans 3:10-18). Because of this no one of himself is willing to do the Father's will, to understand, to accept the truth about Jesus Christ. Such a person lacks the spiritual insight to do so (1 Corinthians 2:14). No one can take any credit for choosing Christ. This point is illustrated in Romans 9:16. It says, "So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy." John 1:12-13 also says, "But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God."

King David prayed a couple of interesting prayers to God that we, in this dispensation of time should pay very close attention too. In the 51st division of Psalms he said, “Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy loving kindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions.” We conclude that David understood his need for Gods favor, and Gods mercy as we read in verses 4-6; “Against You, and You only, I have sinned And done what is evil in Your sight, So that You are justified when You speak And blameless when You judge. Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, And in sin my mother conceived me. Behold, You desire truth in the innermost being, And in the hidden part You will make me know wisdom.”

In my conclusion I want to leave this thought resonating in your mind… As it was with King David, so it is with each of us.

Consider if you will; This world that we live in, is nothing more than a “Big Bus Station,” and when we were born into it, we were born with a ticket stamped that will take us to the place where we will spend eternity.

Assuming that what David said is true, then were all brought forth in iniquity, and conceived in sin. That means we all came into this world with the wrong ticket. A ticket that was stamped with “Hell” as our final destination. Let us thank God today for His Mercy, and His grace for giving us time in this bus station to exchange tickets. None of us knows when our personal bus will pull into the station, but know this… when your bus arrives, and its doors swing open, and “YOUR” name is called, whatever ticket you have in your hand at that time is the ticket that will carry you to when you will spend eternity.

The bible says “Choose you this day who you will serve. While there is yet time, while the redemption window is still open “MAKE THE EXCHANGE.” When your bus arrives, if you have the wrong ticket it will be too late. When you turn to go over to the Redemption window you’re going to see that window closed with a note on it that reads “ON BREAK, WILL BE BACK IN 10 MINUTES.”

 

Sealed for Redemption

Believers are saved solely by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ. As a result of acceptance of this grace by faith, we are sealed with the Holy Spirit as a guarantor of our salvation (Ephesians 1:13-14). When God seals a person it is a permanent seal which no one is able to break. What God has sealed man cannot break. The story of Daniel in the lions' den is an Old Testament example of what a seal is what it is meant to be. The seal was placed on the stone over the mouth of the den "so that nothing would be changed."

"Then the king gave orders, and Daniel was brought in and cast into the lions' den. The king spoke and said to Daniel, 'Your God whom you constantly serve will Himself deliver you.' A stone was brought and laid over the mouth of the den; and the king sealed it with his own signet ring and with the signet rings of his nobles, so that nothing would be changed in regard to Daniel." (Daniel 6:16-17)

Another example is in the New Testament when Jesus was placed in the tomb of Joseph of Arimathea. A seal was ordered by Pilate to be placed on the tomb to keep it secure.

"And they went and made the grave secure, and along with the guard they set a seal on the stone." (Matthew 27:66)

It is clear from these two examples that the main purpose of the seal is to not only identify the authority of the one placing it, but to hold something secure. When a person comes to Christ he comes under the jurisdiction of the Holy Spirit, making him a child of God. The Spirit then keeps the believer secure in Christ.

"Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and anointed us is God, who also sealed us and gave us the Spirit in our hearts as a pledge." (2 Corinthians 1:21-22)

When a seal is given in the Bible it is given with a purpose and is unchangeable. Now if the seal of a mere man is given with a binding, unchangeable purpose, how much more when God seals something? Can men break God's seal? This passage shows that the Holy Spirit of promise makes Christians firm in the faith of the Gospel, allowing the believer to live a life pleasing to God, and providing assurance of salvation.

"In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation--having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God's own possession, to the praise of His glory." (Ephesians 1:13-14)

God has made known to believers through Christ, the Spirit of truth, this promise of salvation. Through Christ, God and humanity formerly estranged, are now reconciled; and the penalty of sin is satisfied for the wrong which caused the separation. He brought about, by His Spirit, the benefits of faith and love, whereby we are united with God.

The sanctifying and comforting influences of the Holy Spirit seal or designate believers as the children of God, and the beneficiaries of eternal life. God's seal guarantees our salvation because we are sealed to the day of redemption. All to the glory of God.

If we are sealed until the day of redemption, does that mean that some will lose their salvation before reaching that day? Scripture says no. When God says in His word that the believer is sealed until the day of redemption, that is exactly what He means. Persons reborn, regenerated, made new by the Holy Spirit will remain saved and make it to the day of redemption because God says so.

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