In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory. (Ephesians 1:13–14)
Today’s big question: how does the Holy Spirit seal believers?
In Ephesians, Paul described the roles each member of the Trinity plays in salvation—the Father (Ephesians 1:3–6), the Son (Ephesians 1:7–12), and the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13–14). God’s Word is truth (John 17:17), and faith in Jesus Christ comes from hearing the “word of truth,” as Paul states, “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17). For those who receive Jesus Christ as their Savior, they are “sealed with the Holy Spirit.”
For this devotional, we will look at two Greek words, which will help us understand what Paul means. First, the Greek word for seal is sphragizo, which can mean to stamp for security, ownership, or preservation. This stamp is the Holy Spirit, and He dwells within believers (John 14:17). Paul writes the following to the believers at Corinth:
Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God, who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee. (2 Corinthians 1:21–22)
In other words, God has sealed believers with the Spirit, who dwells within their hearts as a guarantee. Second, the Greek word for guarantee is arrabon, which can mean a pledge (i.e., something delivered—a down payment—as security for the payment of a fulfillment of a promise). God will surely deliver on His promise of salvation, as believers are “sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise.”
Furthermore, believers are no longer slaves to sin but “slaves of God” (Romans 6:6, 22), and believers, “the people of God” (1 Peter 2:10), are marked as such with His Spirit that dwells within them.
The Holy Spirit is clearly integral to God’s plan of salvation, and I encourage you to study Ephesians 1 with the Trinity in mind to learn more about what our awesome God has done for us.
Today’s big idea: the Holy Spirit dwells within believers’ hearts as a guarantee.
What to pray: thank God for the promise of our salvation, which He has given us through His Spirit.