“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.”
Faithful saints are those who trusted in Jesus. This idea of “believed” is not mere mental acknowledgment like the devils who believe and tremble. This “believed” carries with it the idea of so trusting in Jesus that they cast themselves onto Christ and lay all their burdens on him. They cast off their old man of sin and put on the new man of life in Christ. In Jesus’ words, they were born again. So to believe in Jesus, in this case, is more than just saying it. It’s doing what he asks. It’s faith that acts and obeys. Those who have done that are made holy by the blood of Christ and become the faithful saints.
When we became one in Christ through a faith produced baptism we were given the Holy Spirit that Jesus promised to live in our inner spiritual being. Paul refers to this gift as a seal. The presence of the Spirit of God living in us is God’s sign that we are his. We are familiar with the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval. Thousands of articles wear this seal showing that they are trusted products and are backed by the Good Housekeeping Organization. Many of us have items in our homes that came with a guarantee or warranty that was superimposed on a seal. When you see the seal you know, it is backed by the company and is the real thing.
God wanted us to know that we are under warranty. He is the one making the warranty good. Anyone in the spiritual world, good or evil, can see that seal and know that we belong to God. Jesus assures us that we cannot be snatched out of his hands. Nothing can separate us from God and his love because he has put his seal upon us.
Not only is the Holy Spirit of promise used to seal us but he is also God’s pledge that we will receive all the other promises God has made to his people. The Holy Spirit of promise is the first of the promises and thus stands as a down payment. Sometimes this is referred to as “earnest money.” It’s a way of saying, “If I don’t finish my contract with you then I will forfeit my earnest money.”
Think about that for a minute. We might put a thousand or more dollars up as earnest money on a house, but if for some reason we decide not to buy it we will lose the money. Maybe we don’t care because we would lose more if we went ahead with the offer we made. God did not put a small portion down. He put himself down as the earnest money. He died on the cross which was a significant payment and then when we accepted that gift of himself he gave himself again in the person of the Holy Spirit. This is no token down payment. God cannot go back on his inheritance offer. See what he’s done? He’s invested himself in us so that we will know that he is sincere.
Why go to this much trouble. Why not just tell us and leave it at that? Why the cross? Why the gift of the Spirit. Why does God want to live in us? Why did he make us a holy temple? Why did he sanctify us?
Here is the answer: with a view to redemption. Yes, God wants us to belong to him, to be his children, his family and to accomplish that he has to redeem us. Then, once we are redeemed, he can make plans to possess us. Let me outline this.
- God paid for us with the blood of Jesus.
- God sanctified us so that we would be holy and he could dwell in us.
- God then moved into us via the Holy Spirit to assure us that we redeemed.
- God will keep us in this world from the evil one.
- God will take possession of us when the time of the end comes.
All this leads to one thing again. The praise of His glory. We can not possibly consider the above five points and not praise God for his unspeakable gift