, , , , , ,

Exodus 12:13
And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt.

The blood was to be a token, a sign or mark, that those in the house belonged to Jehovah God and were safe from the destroyer. If you are familiar with eschatology at all, you have probably heard of the mark of the beast. Many theories abound as to what it may be, but no one knows for sure. However, from a Scriptural viewpoint we can confidently affirm that whatever the mark of the beast winds up being, it will only be a pale imitation of the mark of God.

God marks out people for redemption and for protection. The first place we encounter the mark of God is in the story of Cain. After hearing God’s judgment, Cain complained that his punishment was too great to bear, that anyone who found him would kill him. “Don’t fret about that,” God told him, “I’m going to mark you so that no one can touch you.”[1]  If God can protect the likes of Cain, don’t you think He has a good shot at watching over your life?

How many of us realize that a vision from God may be something we won’t like? Part of being alive prophetically is to look at what the Lord shows us and be able to stand under it and then be able to understand it. Ezekiel was given a vision and it wasn’t a pretty picture. After seeing all the abominations that were occurring in the temple, he heard the Lord call out a company of angels with one scribe angel in their midst.

Ezekiel 9:4-6
4 And the Lord said unto him [the scribe angel], Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.
5 And to the others [the warring angels] he said in mine hearing, Go ye after him through the city, and smite: let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity:
6 Slay utterly old and young, both maids, and little children, and women: but come not near any man upon whom is the mark; and begin at my sanctuary. Then they began at the ancient men which were before the house.

Judgment begins at the house of God. The slaughter of those in Jerusalem began in the sanctuary. The only ones spared were those who had been marked by the angel because they were grieving over the sin of the people. “But come not near any man upon whom is the mark,” the Lord commanded. He marks people for redemption and protection. He seals His servants that no harm may come to them.

Revelation 7:2-3
2 And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea,
3 Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.

Revelation 9:4
And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads.

In Revelation 13 we learn that the false prophet caused the people to receive the mark of the beast in their right hand or in their foreheads.[2]  Where do you think he got the idea? The Lord commanded the children of Israel to redeem all their firstborn in commemoration of the historical Passover. This command was to be a sign on their hand and a symbol on their forehead.[3]  This idea was later carried over to the whole Law[4] and formed the basis for the traditional wearing of phylacteries. All the devil will accomplish with his “mark of the beast” is a cheap counterfeit of the protection God brings to His people when He marks them. God protects those He marks. The devil makes merchandise of his marks.

What is the “seal of the living God?” In our day it is none other than the Holy Spirit who seals us up unto the day of redemption.

Ephesians 1:13-14
13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit,
14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession – to the praise of his glory. NIV

The Holy Spirit marks us as the people and property of Jehovah God.[5] As we go further in this study, we will show that the Holy Spirit goes where the blood has been applied. We see this principle at work in the consecration of the priests and the cleansing of the lepers. Blood was first applied to the right ear, thumb, and big toe. Oil was then placed over the blood. Even the “horn of oil”[6] teaches us this lesson, for the horn was taken from a sacrificial animal. No sacrifice, no anointing; the anointing goes where the blood has flowed. Even as the blood of the Passover lamb marked the doorways of the houses of the children of Israel, His blood has marked our hearts as the children of God. And He has sealed us with His Holy Spirit for protection and redemption because of the blood of Jesus Christ.

[1] Gen 4:14-15 Paraphrased, of course. For the record, the mark of Cain wasn’t a change in skin color!
[2] Rev 13:16
[3] Ex 13:16
[4] Deut 6:1-8
[5] See also 2 Cor 1:22 and Eph 4:30
[6] 1 Sam 16:1