What Is a Seal?
A seal is defined as something that confirms, ratifies, or makes secure. From ancient history seals were used to attest the authorship of a document by indicating the ownership of the object upon which the seal was impressed. All government seals contain three common elements. These are: the name, title, and territory of the ruler. This applies to the Bible as well. For example, Daniel 1:1 reads, “Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon.” So, we have the name, the official title, and his area of dominion.
The Sabbath Commandment Has God’s Seal
Within the Ten Commandments, only the Sabbath commandment (Exodus 20:8-11) has all the elements of a seal. For it reads, “For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them” (Exodus 20:11). In the Sabbath commandment, we have God’s name (the Lord), His title or office (the Creator) and His territory (heavens and earth, sea and all that is in them).
The seventh day Sabbath commandment is the only commandment that is repeatedly referred to as a seal or sign of God as seen in the following references: “Therefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throughout their generations as a perpetual covenant“; “Hallow My Sabbaths, and they will be a sign between Me and you, that you may know that I am the Lord your God” (Exodus 31:16; Ezekiel 20:20 also 20:12).
The Bible never identifies the seventh day Sabbath with the Jews for it was instituted over 2000 years before any Jews ever existed (Genesis 2:2,3). God calls the seventh-day Sabbath “My Holy Day” (Isaiah 58:13). And He also calls it “the sabbath of the LORD thy God” (Exodus 20:10).
The Papacy Changed the Seventh Day Sabbath Observance to the First Day
In the New Testament, Jesus declared that He never changed or abolished the Sabbath (Matthew 5:17,18). The change came in the fourth century when the Catholic Church transferred the sanctity of the seventh-day Sabbath to Sunday, thus violating the commandment of God (Exodus 20:8-11).
Also see: How and when was the Sabbath changed?
But why did God bless the Sabbath? Because He rested from His work of creation on that day (Genesis 2:2,3). And since every love relationship needs time grow, the Sabbath was instituted that people may rest from their work and nourish their relationship with God. Keeping the Sabbath demonstrates that God’s children are resting from their own works. They are trusting in Jesus for their salvation (Revelation 14:12; Hebrews 4).
The Final Crisis
At the end of time, there will be a sealing of God’s people that prepares them to stand through the fearful times that will come before the second advent (Revelation 7:1). As in ancient history a seal on an object showed its ownership, so the seal of God upon His children shows that He has identified them as His own.
The point of controversy will be over the seventh day Sabbath observance since all the other 9 commandments are accepted by the Christian world. But the crisis will rise when symbolic Babylon prevails upon the state to enforce Sunday observance by civil law (Blue Laws) and seeks to punish all dissidents (Revelation 13:12–17).
The faithful will be characterized by keeping of God’s commandment. “And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and he went to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Revelation 12:17). And they will receive God’s seal and will not be harmed by the final plagues (Revelation 7:1-4).
For more on the Sabbath, please check (Lessons 91-102) of the Bible Lessons.
In His service,