FRIDAY MORNING MANNA
Biblical Numerology: NUMBER SIX Part VII
Ezekiel 9 Marking Same as Sealing in Revelation 7
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
Our words index the state of our heart; and whether men talk much or little, their words express the character of their thoughts.
Ellen G. White, Sons & Daughters, p. 180
And the Lord said to him (the man clothed in linen and had a writer’s inkhorn at his side), Go through the midst of the Jerusalem, and put a MARK on the foreheads of the men who sigh and cry over all the abominations that are done within it.” Ezekiel 9: 4.
TIME SENSITIVE COUNSELS FOR ALL SPIRITUAL GUARDIANS
From Testimonies to Ministers and Workers by E. G. White, Pacific Press Publishing Asso., Boise, Idaho, Oshawa, Ontario, Canada, 1962 ed., pp. 444-48. “Be Ye Clean” (From the tract The Sin of Licentiousness by same author).
The Ezekiel 9 angel “goes through the midst of Jerusalem,” sealing or marking men in their foreheads with an indelible mark, unalterable seal, the sign of God’s signal power and exclusive right to be worshipped as Creator, of those “who sigh and cry for the abominations done in the land and in the church. At the end of this sealing work the merciful slaying of all those without it takes place. None are spared, beginning with “the ancient men,” i.e., pastors, ministers, priests, religious leaders and men of the cloth who have intentionally and craftily misled the people with false doctrines, “another gospel.” That time of reckoning, “the great day of the Lord,” long withheld by a long-suffering, merciful God is soon to come!
The sealing of the servants of God is the same as that was shown to Ezekiel in vision. John had also been a witness of this most startling revelation!
God’s servant wrote:
“I call upon ministers who have been handling the word of God, ‘Be ye clean that bear the vessels of the Lord’. I ask the people who have listened to the truths from the pulpit, What are your feelings in anticipation of that great day? In that day you have each an individual, personal interest. Be assured, God will not mocked with pretensions [Gal. 6: 7, 8]. Have you the wedding garment on [the righteousness of Christ]?
NOTE: “The only hope of any man lies through Jesus Christ, who brought the robe of His righteousness to put upon the sinner who would lay off his filthy garments The pure and holy garments are not prepared to be put on by any one after he has entered he has entered into the gate of the city. All who enter will have on the robe of Christ’s righteousness. There will be no covering up of sins and faults to hide the deformity of character; no robes will be half-washed; but all will be pure and spotless.”- Sons & Daughters, p. 66.
“We hear now of earthquakes in diverse places, of fires, of tempests, of disasters by sea and land, of pestilence, of famine. What weight do these signs have upon you? This is only the beginning of what shall be. The description of the day of God is given through John by the Revelator [Christ Himself]. The cry of the terror-stricken myriads has fallen upon the ear of John. ‘The great day of His wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand? [Rev. 6:17]. The apostle himself was awed and overwhelmed.”
NOTE: Revelation chapter 7 is a parenthetical chapter, a necessary interruption to the narrative continuum of the seven seals given in chapters 5, 6, that ends with a desperate question, “Who shall be able to stand?’ Christ answers this momentous query, immediately assuring all who remain alive and stay faithful to Him up to the climax of the great controversy. The narrative resumes and concludes with the seventh seal in chapter 8:1, followed by the narrative of the seven trumpets in chapters 8 and 9. God’s answer to the question in Revelation 6: 17 is that a literal number of 144, 000 living saints will be enabled to stand in the great day of the Lord—that most awful time when, probation having ended a short time earlier, the wrath of God and the Lamb [Rev. 6: 16] long withheld, are finally poured out unmingled with mercy in rapid succession as the seven last plague upon all who persistently rejected the final call and receive the seal of God but chose the mark, name, or number of the beast described in Rev. 13: 18. The awesome yet often contentious topic of the 144,000 saints addressed in Revelation 7: 1-8; 14: 1-5 was never intended by the Revelator to confuse but reveal their special role at the controversy before Jesus comes, will be a separate, heart throbbing, triumphant truth that we hope to consider in subsequent issues.
What is our refuge on the “great day of the Lord”?
“If such scenes as this are to come, such tremendous judgments on a guilty world, where will be the refuge for God’s people? How will they be sheltered ‘until the indignation be overpast’ [Isa. 26: 20]? John sees the elements of nature—earthquake, tempests, and political strife—represented as being held by four angels. These winds are under control until God gives the word to let them go. There is the safety of God’s church. [We’ve already seen mini “trailers” of it as it were, in the disasters and political strife currently overlapping one another in the nation and world today]. The angels of God do His bidding, holding back the winds of the earth, that the winds should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree, until the servants of God should be sealed in their foreheads [Rev. 7 ]
“The mighty angel is seen ascending from the east (or sunrising). This mightiest of angels [Gabriel] has in his hand the seal of the living God, or of Him who alone can give life, who can inscribe upon the foreheads the mark or inscription, to whom shall be granted immortality, eternal life. It is this voice of the highest angel that had authority to command the four angels to keep in check the four winds [from the four corners of the earth] until this work [of sealing] be performed, and until he should give the summons to let them loose.
“Those that overcome the world, the flesh, and the devil , will be the favored ones who shall receive the seal of the living God. Those whose hands are not clean [morally and spiritually], whose hearts are not pure, will not have the seal of the living God. Those who are planning sin and acting it [strategizing, then implementing—a fundamental war dictum and political staple] will be passed by. Only those who, in their attitude before God, are filling the position of those who are repenting and confessing [not doubling-down and justifying by more untruths and counter accusations, etc.] in the great antitypical day of atonement [pre-advent or investigative judgment in most holy began in 1844], will be recognized and marked as worthy of God’s protection.
“The names of those who are steadfastly looking and waiting and for the appearing of their Savior—more earnestly and wishfully than they who wait for the morning—will be numbered with those who are sealed [at that time].
[On the other hand] “Those who, while having all the light of truth flashing upon their souls, should have works corresponding to their avowed faith, but are allured by sin, setting up idols in their hearts, corrupting their souls before God, and polluting those who unite with them in sin, will havetheir names blotted out of the book of life, and be left in the midnight darkness, having no oil in their vessels with their lamps [final antitypical foolish virgins of the parable of Matthew 25]. ‘Unto you that fear My name shall the Sun of Righteousness arise with healing in His wings’ [Malachi 4: 1, 2].
“The sealing of the servants of God [see Rev. 7: 1-8; cf. Rev. 14: 1-5] is the same that was shown to Ezekiel in vision. John also had been a witness of this most startling revelation. He saw the sea and the waves roaring, and men’s hearts failing them for fear [Luke 21: 26]. He beheld the earth moved, and the mountains carried into the midst of the sea, the water thereof roaring and troubled . . . He was shown plagues, pestilence, famine, and death performing their terrible mission.
“‘Escape For Thy life.’ The same angel who visited Sodom is sounding the note of warning, ‘Escape for thy life.’ The bottles of God’s wrath cannot be poured out to destroy the wicked and their works until all the people have been judged, and the cases of the living as well as the dead are decided [in the pre-advent judgment] And even after the saints are sealed with the seal of the living God, His elect will have trials individually. Personal afflictions will come; but the furnace is closely watched by and eye that will not suffer the gold to be consumed. The indelible mark of God is upon them. God can plead that His own name is written there. The Lord has shut them in. Their destination is inscribed—‘GOD, NEW JERUSALEM’ [Rev.3: 12]. They are God’s property, His possession.
“Will this seal be put upon the impure in mind, the fornicator, the adulterer, the man who covets his neighbor’s wife? Let your souls answer this question, Does my character correspond to the qualifications essential that I may receive a passport to the mansions Christ has prepared for those who are fitted for them? Holiness must be inwrought in our character.
“God has shown me that at the very time that the signs of the times are being fulfilled around us, when we hear, as it were, the tread of the hosts of heaven fulfilling their mission, men of intelligence, men in responsible positions, will be putting rotten timbers in their character building—material which is consumable in the day of God, and which will decide them to be unfit to enter the mansions above. They have refused let go the filthy garments; they clung to them as if they were of so precious value. They will lose heaven and an eternity of bliss on account of them.
Be Converted Men
“I call upon you who minister in sacred things to be converted men before you go forth to act any part in the cause of my Master. Now is your time to seek a preparation and a readiness for the fearful test which is before us—that holiness without which no man shall see God [Heb. 12; 14]. Let none say, My way is hid from the Lord [Isa. 40: 27; Gen. 3: 8, 10] God taketh no knowledge of my ways. Now it may be it is not too late. Now it may be you can repent. But even if pardon is written against your names, you will sustain terrible loss; for the scars you have made upon your souls will remain.
“Oh, how can any who have the light of truth, the great light given them of God, defy the wrath and judgments of God by sinning against Him and doing the very things God has told them in His word not to do? How can they be so blinded by Satan as to dishonor God to His face, and defile their souls by sinning knowingly.
“Says the apostle, ‘We are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men’ [1 Cor. 4: 9]. Will these sinners—shall I call them hypocrites? —in Zion [the church] inquire, In what manner am I a spectacle to the world, to angels, and to men? Answer for yourselves, By my abuse of the light and privileges and mercies God has given me, by unseemly actions which corrupt and defile the soul. Professing to know God, do I put Him out of my thoughts, and substitute an idol? Do I lead other minds to regard sin lightly by my example? Am I a spectacle to the world in moral looseness? Am I a spectacle to the angels [both good and evil] in indecent actions and moral defilement of the body? The apostle exhorts us: ‘I beseech you, . . . brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service And be not comformed to this world but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.’ [Rom. 12: 1, 2]. ‘Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and the spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.’ [2 Cor. 7: 1].”
(To be continued next week)