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Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. 2 Corinthians 1:21-22 (NIV)

So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and posting the guard. (Matthew 27:66)

Just after Jesus was murdered, a couple of his disciples put him in a borrowed tomb. The Religious Elite of the day were concerned about some claims Jesus made of rising from the dead. They asked permission of the Roman governor to place a guard at the tomb to insure that the radical disciples of Jesus would not steal the body. The governor went one step further. Not only did he allow the Jews to post a guard at the tomb, he sealed it with the seal of the mighty Roman Empire.

The Seal was nothing more than a cord secured around the stone with clay holding it in place at both ends. There was nothing magical about the seal. It offered no strength of its own. Its strength and validity rested solely on the power of the Roman Government to make good on its promise. To break the seal meant death. Period.

This was no doubt the word picture that the Apostle Paul conjured up in the minds of his readers as he wrote to the church located in the Grecian city of Corinth. They were well aware of the strength of the Roman Empire. They knew, intimately, of the power of the government to keep its promises.

Eventually, of course, we know that the strength of the Roman Empire dwindled. It was no longer able to keep its promises. It was no longer the most powerful force in the world. As a result, the security of the ‘Roman Seal’ became worthless and meaningless.

The ‘seal’ Paul talks about is a different sort of seal. It’s a seal that is not based on human power. It’s a seal that transcends time. It’s a seal that no one in the physical or the spiritual world can sever. Its guarantee will never become obsolete.

For those of us who have accepted the free gift of forgiveness through Jesus Christ we can know we are sealed in God. He gave us his promise, his guarantee, that he would never leave us, forsake us, or hold us under condemnation for our sin.

Our eternal destiny doesn’t rest on our ability to keep a set of rules or memorizing some mantra. Our eternal destiny rests in one who is eternal. Our acceptance is as secure as the universe. Whatever struggle you are bearing. Whoever, or whatever, is threatening you or accusing you today. Remember, because of Jesus, you are sealed with an eternal promise, an eternal hope. The Roman Seal didn’t hold him in the grave, the seal of God’s grace should never hold us back.

PRAYER: Father God. I thank you for Jesus. I praise you for the assurance that there is nothing, including my own rebellious stupidity, that will wrestle me from your arms. Amen.

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January 2023
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