A. T. Jones
“THE time has come when all who work in Christ’s lines will have the mark of God, in words, in spirit, in character, in their honor of Immanuel.”
The man who was to set the mark of God upon the people “was clothed with linen.” And “the fine linen is the righteousness acts of saints” (Rev. 19:8).
This mark, then, which he sets upon the people, is the mark of the righteousness, the character, of God, “even the righteousness of God which is by [the] faith of Jesus Christ to all and upon all them that believe. For there is no difference” (Rom. 3:22).
This mark is set alone by means of the Spirit of God. “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. . . . that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit” (Rom. 8:2, 4).
Again: “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, . . . that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith” (Gal. 3:13, 14).
The blessing of Abraham is the righteousness of God. The righteousness of God comes only by faith. And when it had come to Abraham, he then received the sign of circumcision, a “seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had” (Rom. 4:11).
True circumcision is “that of the heart, in the Spirit” (Rom. 2:29). Accordingly, the gift of the Holy Spirit is the seal of the righteousness of the faith which we have. He is the seal of the righteousness of God imputed to us by faith before we are circumcised, and also the seal of the righteousness of God imparted to us through faith after we have been circumcised.
“And the Lord your God will circumcise your heart . . . to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live” (Deut. 30:6). To love God with all the heart and with all the soul, is the bond of perfectness. It is the love of God, which is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit, which is given to us. And “this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments.” And as all His commandments are righteousness; as the keeping of His commandments is the manifestation of the love of God in the life; and as this love of God is shed abroad in the life by the Holy Spirit, this is the righteousness of the law, which is fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit.
Thus, as the Holy Spirit is the seal of righteousness, it is only by means of the Holy Spirit of God that the mark of God can be put upon us in our words, actions, and characters, in our honor of Immanuel. And in truth it is indeed the Holy Spirit of God “by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption” (Eph. 4:30). And “the time has come when all who work in Christ’s lines will have the mark of God.”
Have you the mark of God? Have you the seal of the righteousness of God? If not, why not? When the righteousness of God is a free gift to everybody, why do you not accept it? You never find any difficulty in accepting a free gift that is bestowed by a man: why should you find any difficulty in accepting this free gift bestowed upon you by the Lord?
Accept then, in all its fulness, the righteousness of God which is freely given. Then, upon this, receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. Then still look to that Spirit and depend upon Him to impart to you the righteousness of God, to perfect in you the work of Christ and to seal you “for the day of redemption.”
And the day of redemption is at the doors. This is certain; for when the man clothed in linen, with the writer’s inkhorn by his side, was commanded to “go through the midst of the city, . . . and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and cry over all the abominations that are done within it,” to the others who had the destroying weapons in their hands it was said, “Go after him through the city and kill: . . . but do not come near anyone on whom is the mark; and begin at My sanctuary” (Eze. 9:1–6). The ones with the destroying weapons follow shortly, if not closely, “after him” who puts the mark of God. And as “the time has now come when the mark of God” is being set, it cannot be long ere the ones with the destroying weapons will pass through also.
Have you the righteousness of God imputed and imparted, which God can seal by His Holy Spirit? It is a free gift to every one who believes.
“Ask, and it will be given to you.” “Receive the Holy Spirit.” “Be filled with” “the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.”
The Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, December 20, 1898, p. 814.
“AND do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption” (Eph. 4:30). When anything is sealed, it is made secure; and God by His Holy Spirit is now sealing hearts for eternity. Will you let the Holy Spirit do His work in you? Let him, let him!
The Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, December 20, 1898, p. 817.