The Seal of Christ

When my friend, Professor Marvin Creamer set out on his historic around-the-world voyage that was to be entirely without navigational instruments, all the maritime experts thought that he was foolish and that the voyage would end in tragedy. No one in all history had ever done that and people were claiming that Creamer was risking not only his own life, but that of those who had volunteered to sail with him on a leg or two of the voyage. He was virtually commanded to take a compass and sextant along in a canvas bag that was officially sealed and notarized by authorities. Those seals were meticulously inspected both before and after the voyage to assure that there was no cheating involved in this feat.

Those official seals provided sufficient evidence to all mankind, that Creamer had actually accomplished what he set out to do. When Jesus was crucified, the Jewish leaders feared that his disciples might steal his body and claim that he had risen from the dead. They appealed to Pilate that guards be placed at the tomb to prevent that from happening. Pilate went one step further and commanded that the large stone which was rolled before the entrance of the tomb should be sealed with an official Roman seal.

Matthew 28:2 says, And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it.

We don't know if it was the angel or earthquake that broke the seal, but the angel rolled the stone away. There were eyewitnesses soldiers, charged with preventing that very thing from happening. Roman soldiers who failed to follow commands or do their duty were normally punished by death. Sleeping on their watch also carried the death penalty, but leaders of the Jews told the soldiers to tell everyone that the disciples had stolen the corpse while they were sleeping! If they were sleeping, how did they know?

Official seals of powerful rulers were very important and breaking a seal was punishable by death. Marvin Creamer is still alive today at 104, but not because he refused to break the seal on that bag of instruments. At his 100th birthday celebration, I jokingly told those present that Marvin Creamer was living proof that salt is a good preservative.

Another professor friend of mine lived to be 104. He was an Austrian professor of art history named Walter Liebenfelss who was saved in a family camp at 75 years of age. He once showed me an official document signed and sealed by the Austro-Hungarian Emperor Ferdinand I, declaring that He and all of his descendants for all eternity were entitled to carry a royal title along with their family name. The seal was not broken, but an upstart political figure named Adolph Hitler rendered the document ineffective and worthless.

The seals of men are no more permanent than the men who did the sealing, but the New Testament says that Christians are sealed by the Holy Spirit. The sealing of the Holy Spirit is eternal and cannot be broken by man. The Lord knoweth them that are his (II Timothy 2:19).

Romans 8:38-39 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

What did Paul mean when he spoke of principalities and powers?

Ephesians 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

This reference is to Satan and all his demons, plus men and women who serve him. As I considered this, I realized that all inanimate things can also be included in Satan's domain.

For nearly a year now I have been fighting a battle with my computer. I came to the conclusion that computers are tools of Satan. I read in my Bible that men were commanded by God to smash their idols and grind them to powder. Several times I came very close to smashing my computer with a sledgehammer.

Then I came to realize that my computer was certainly not my idol! I hated it and wanted to destroy it, but that would be caving to Satan. We are to resist the devil and not to quit in defeat (James 4:7).

Colossians 1:16 says, For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him. Ephesians 3:10 To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God, Colossians 2:15: And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it. Titus 3:1 Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work.

Christians are to be subject to principalities and powers as created by God, who is above all these. When a seal is placed on something or someone, it is no stronger than the principality or power that stands behind that seal. Adolph Hitler was able to render the seal of a dead Emperor Franz Ferdinand worthless, but other powerful leaders did the same to many such enactments of Hitler. No power on earth, past, present or future can render God's Word ineffective or invalid.

Ralph V Harvey