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Copr. 1997, Bruce N. Cameron, J.D.

LESSON 8 - SATAN'S MARK VERSUS GOD'S SEAL (REV 7:1-14)

INTRODUCTION: APPRECIATE TERRY TEACHING FOR ME LAST WEEK. HE DID A
FABULOUS JOB ON SHORT NOTICE.  IT TAKES ME A LOT OF TIME TO
PREPARE, I COULD NOT HAVE DONE THE  JOB HE DID ON SHORT NOTICE.

WE HAVE STUDIED DOWN TO THE SMALLEST DETAIL THE MESSAGE OF THE 1ST
ANGEL.  LAST WEEK WE STUDIED THE MESSAGE OF THE 2ND ANGEL, AND THIS
WEEK WE BEGIN TO LOOK IN DETAIL AT THE MESSAGE OF THE 3RD ANGEL.

I. WHAT IS THE THE SEAL v. THE MARK?

     A. TURN TO REV 14:9-11.  SOME AWFUL STUFF, RIGHT?  HOW ARE THE
     PEOPLE IDENTIFIED WHO HAVE THESE TERRIBLE THINGS HAPPEN TO
     THEM? (THE MARK OF THE BEAST)

          1. WHAT DO WE DO TO GET THE MARK? (WOSHIPPING THE BEAST
          AND HIS IMAGE.) 

     B. READ EPH 1:13-14.  AS OPPOSED TO BURNING, HERE WE FIND
DESCRIBED PEOPLE WHO ARE REDEEMED.  WHAT ARE THESE PEOPLE MARKED
WITH? (THE SEAL)
          1. WHAT IS THE SEAL? (THE H.S.)
          2. AND HOW DO WE GET IT? (BELIEVING THE WORD OF TRUTH.)

          3. DO YOU NOTICE THAT v.14 SAYS THAT THE HS SEAL IS THE
          "DEPOSIT?" (KJV "EARNEST")

          4. IN REAL WORLD TERMS, WHAT IS A DEPOSIT? (SOMETHING TO
          HOLD WHAT YOU WANT TO GET; A PAYMENT NOW TO GUARANTEE
          THAT YOU WILL PAY THE BALANCE LATER.) (NOTICE THAT 2 COR
          1:21-23 IS ALMOST IDENTICAL.)

     C. WE GET A FURTHER PICTURE OF THE FINAL PAYMENT IN REV 7:1-4. 
     LATER WE SEE THIS GROUP OF 144K PICTURED IN THE FIRST VERSES
     OF REV 14.
     
     D. SO WE HAVE TWO GROUPS: ONE HAVING THE SEAL OF THE LIVING
     GOD, AND ANOTHER HAVING THE MARK OF THE BEAST.  THESE TWO
     GROUPS SEEM TO HAVE THE MARK OR THE SEAL IN A COMMON PLACE.  
          1. WHERE IS THAT? (FOREHEAD: REV 14:9; REV7:3)
          
          2. AND WHAT IS THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THAT?(WHEN I WAS 
          STUDYING AND PUTTING TOGETHER THIS QUESTION, I ANSWERED
          IT "MENTAL DECISION." BUT I DECIDED TO LOOK IN SOME
          COMMENTARIES TO SEE WHAT OTHERS HAD TO SAY ABOUT THIS. 
          EGW (IN HER COMMENTARY SECTION OF THE SDABC SAYS THAT
          THIS IS A LITERAL MARK THAT ONLY THE ANGELS CAN SEE. 
          BOTH THE SDA COMMENTARY AND THE NIV COMMENTARY (BRUCE)
          REFER TO EZK 9:4.  THIS IS ONE OF THE MOST INTERESTING
          STORIES IN THE OT. IN THIS STORY AN ANGEL ACTUALLY MARKS
          THE FOREHEAD OF THOSE WHO ARE SAVED.  AND THE CRITERIA
          FOR MARKING IS WHETHER THE PERSON "SIGHS" AND "CRY" (KJV)
          "GRIEVE" AND "LAMENT" (NIV) OVER ALL THE DETESTABLE
          THINGS THAT ARE DONE.)
               a. DO YOU SIGH AND CRY?
               b. LETS EXPLORE THIS IDEA OF HOW WE GET MARKED IN
               MORE DETAIL.

II. HOW YOU GET THE SEAL OR THE MARK.
     SEAL:
     A.  WHAT DO UNDERSTAND THE SEAL OF GOD TO BE IN THE LAST DAYS?
     (SABBATH KEEPING HAS ALWAYS BEEN THE TRADITIONAL TEACHING OF
     OUR CHURCH.)

     B. THE TWO TEXTS THAT OUR LESSON GAVE US TO PROVE THAT POINT
     ARE EZK 20:12,20 AND EX 31:12,13. SOMEBODY PLS LOOK THOSE UP.

          1. IS THAT SUFFICIENT PROOF FOR YOU?  IF YOU WERE AN 
          UNBELIEVER WHO WAS LOOKING AT THIS FOR THE FIRST TIME,
          WOULD YOU BE CONVINCED?
     
          2. AREN'T BOTH OF THOSE SIGNS GIVEN TO ISREAL BASED ON
          GOD LEADING THEM OUT OF EGYPT?  OR AT THE TIME THAT GOD
          LED THEM OUT OF EGYPT?
          
          3. IS THERE ANY EVIDENCE THAT THIS HAS ANYTHING TO DO 
          WITH THE SEAL OF THE LAST DAYS?

          4. I DID A COMPUTER SEARCH OF THE GREEK WORD TRANSLATED
          "SEAL" THAT IS USED IN EPH 1:13 AND REV 7.  WHERE IT IS
          LINKED TO SOMETHING, IT MOST OFTEN IS USED IN THE CONTEXT
          OF THE HOLY SPIRIT IN THE NT.  I ALSO DID A COMPUTER
          SEARCH ON THE HEBREW WORD TRANSLATED "SIGN" IN EZK 20:20. 
          I CAME UP WITH: THE FLOOD, CIRC, 10 COMMANDS, PLAGUES ON
          EGYPT AND SABBATH.  THE TWO MOST COMMON WHERE THE PLAGUES
          ON EGYPT AND THE SABBATH.

     C. THIS IS IMPORTANT STUFF FRIENDS.  IF THE SEAL IS CRITICAL
     TO ETERNAL LIFE, IS THE BIBLE SUPPORT SUFFICIENT FOR THIS
     CHURCH TEACHING? (I'M NOT COMFORTABLE WITH JUST THIS. THE
     SABBATH IS JUST ONE OF MANY SEALS REFERRED TO IN THE BIBLE.)

     D. LETS GO BACK TO THE BASICS OF THIS QUARTER: REV 14:7 

          1.WHAT DO YOU SEE AS THE BIG ISSUES IN THE FIRST ANGELS
          MESSAGE? WHAT IS THE REASON TO WORSHIP GOD? (THAT THE JT
          IS COMING AND BECAUSE HE IS THE CREATOR.)
          
          2. NOW IF THOSE ARE THE MATTERS AT ISSUE, WHAT SEAL IS
          RELEVANT TO THOSE ISSUES? (THE SABBATH IS SIGN OF
          CREATION--EX 20:12;   AND OF MAKING US HOLY --EX 31:13
          AND EZK 20:12.  GOD HAS SEVERAL SIGNS, BUT THE SIGN THAT
          IS RELEVANT TO THE ISSUES IN REV 14 IS THE SABBATH!)
          
     MARK:

     E. NOW LETS LOOK AT THE OTHER SIDE: THE MARK OF THE BEAST. 
     READ REV 14:9. 
     
     F. TUESDAYS LESSON SETS OUT THE ARGUMENT FROM DAN 7 THAT THIS
     BEAST IS THE CATHOLIC CHURCH. REV 13 IS ALSO A BASIS FOR THIS
     ARGUMENT.
          1. WE ARE NOT THE ONLY CHURCH THAT TEACHES THIS.  AND A
          NUMBER TEACH THAT THE BEAST IS ROME.  THERE IS NOT DOUBT
          HISTORICALLY, THAT THE CATHOLIC CHURCH CHANGED SABBATH TO
          SUNDAY.

          2. LET ME ASK YOU FRIENDS: ARE THE TEMPTATIONS OF SATAN
          SIMPLE OR COMPLEX?  DO SINS COME IN BLACK AND WHITE OR
          DOES SATAN MIX TRUTH WITH EVIL?  DO THEY COME STRAIGHT AT
          YOU OR DO THEY COME IN SIDEWAYS?

          3. I LIKE AND RESPECT THE CATHOLIC CHURCH TODAY.  I THINK
          IT IS STANDING UP FOR IMPORTANT MORAL PRINCIPLES TODAY.
          SO I DON'T LIKE TO JUST SAY, "WELL, THE BAD GUY IS THE
          CATHOLIC CHURCH."  THAT IS JUST TOO SIMPLE AND SATAN'S
          TEMPTATIONS ARE NOT SIMPLE.

          4. SOMEBODY READ DAN 7:25. WHAT IS THE PROBLEM HERE? 
          (REBELLION AGAINST GOD AND AGAINST HIS SAINTS.)

          5. IN REV 14:9 WE ARE WARNED NOT TO WORSHIP THE BEAST OR
          HIS IMAGE. WHAT WOULD BE AN IMAGE? (SOMETHING THAT LOOKED
          LIKE THE ORIGINAL. THE SDA BC SAYS AN ORGANIZATION THAT
          OPERATES ON THE SAME PRINCIPLES.)

          6. WHAT ORGANIZATIONS OR GROUPS OPERATE ON THE PRINCIPLE
          OF REBELLION AGAINST GOD AND AGAINST HIS SAINTS? (THE
          MEDIA. ANY ORGANIZATION THAT EXALTS MAN AND HIS WISDOM
          OVER GOD AND HIS WISDOM.)
(WHEN JESUS CAME, THE JEWS WHO HAD STUDIED ABOUT HIS COMING HAD A
FIXED IDEA THAT WAS WRONG.  SINCE JESUS SAID HE IS COMING AS A
THIEF, I SUSPECT THAT HIS SECOND COMING WILL BE SIMILAR: UNEXPECTED
EXCEPT TO THE ALERT.  FOR THAT REASON, I THINK IT IS DANGEROUS TO
JUST SAY,  "THE CATHOLIC CHURCH." AND THEN THROW OURSELVES INTO THE
ARMS OF OPEN ENEMIES OF THE GOSPEL.  REBELLION AGAINST GOD IS
REBELLION AGAINST GOD AND WE NEED TO OPPOSE IT WHATEVER FORM IT
TAKES.)

     G. WE HAVE CHRISTIAN ORGANIZATIONS OUT THERE LIKE THE
     CHRISTIAN COALITION AND OTHERS THAT WE ARE TOLD WILL UNITE
     WITH THE CATHOLIC CHURCH TO TAKE AWAY OUR RELIGIOUS LIBERTY. 
          1. WHAT DO YOU THINK IS THE BIBLICAL APPROACH TO THOSE
          ORGANIZATIONS?
          2. DO YOU THINK THAT WE SHOULD JOIN WITH THE ACLU AND PAW
          TO OPPOSE THE CHRISTIAN COALITION?

          3. SOMEBODY READ: LUKE 9:49-50; ROMANS 14:10-13.  WHAT DO
          THESE TEXTS SAY THAT WE SHOULD DO? (WE SHOULD NOT ATTACK
          OUR CHRISTIAN BROTHERS. 
               a. DOES THIS MESSAGE ALSO APPLY TO OUR CHRISTIAN 
               BROTHERS IN THE CATHOLIC CHURCH WHO HAVE NEVER HAD
               ENTER INTO THEIR MIND THAT THEY SHOULD PERSECUTE
               US?  WHO WANT TO FOLLOW THE LORD?

III. NEXT WEEK: THE WRATH OF GOD. REV 14:9-11. STUDY!