Some churches such as the Jehovah’s Witnesses teach that only 144,000 people will be saved.
If you ask a Seventh-day Adventist, do you have the Seal of God? many would find that to be an uncomfortable and difficult question to answer. The reason is, the Adventist prophet Ellen G. White taught that only those people that obey the Ten Commandments and Sabbath so perfectly that they could live without a mediator during the 7 last plagues and stand completely innocent of all sin would be sealed. Ellen White taught her followers that the seal of God would be given at the very end of time just before the 7 last plagues and that they needed to begin preparing right now so that they would be worthy to receive the Seal of God at that time.
“Just before the seven last plagues fall, it will be those only who are agonizing over modern abominations who will receive the “mark of deliverance,” the seal of God.” – Ellen G. White (Great Controversy p. 656; Testimonies, 5:212).
Note: In Ellen White’s eschatological view she taught her followers that “agonizing over modern abominations’ meant giving a “loud cry” against the observance of Sunday to the “apostate protestants” who reject the 7th day Sabbath.
“The destroying angel is soon to pass again over the world. Those who faithfully obey all God’s commandments will be protected. Their unique mark will be the true, Christ-like observance of the Sabbath. Despite world-wide opposition, they choose to remain loyal, and thus they enjoy divine protection from the angel of death. They stand out among the multitude because they have a mark placed upon them, and “that mark is the keeping of His holy Sabbath.” But those who are not careful in Sabbath observance will be destroyed along with the rest of the world” – Ellen G. White (Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary Volume 7 p. 981).
They derive this teaching from Ezekiel 9 and Revelation 7 which speaks of an angel which brings with him the seal of God, to 144,000. Ezekiel 9 speaks of a angel giving a “mark” of protection before the destroying angels began to judge the apostasy practiced in the temple. This perfectly parallels the book of Revelation.. This misunderstanding propagated by Ellen White needs to be corrected so that the truth about the seal of God may be vindicated. The 144,000 are NOT the only ones ever sealed throughout the worlds history, neither is the seal of God exclusively offered in the last days just before the 7 last plagues. That teaching completely contradicts the Bible.
From what the Bible does say we can be certain as born again Christians we have the Seal of God right now! It is not a future happening exclusively, since in the first century Paul was telling the churches they already had the seal.
“WHO HATH (past tense) ALSO SEALED US, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.” 2 Corinthians 1:22 The “earnest” is the down payment. The moment we are born again and receive the Holy Spirit we are immediately given the Seal of God.
Do we receive the Seal of God or earn it by obeying the law, or is the seal of God a gift we receive by faith in God’s promises? Note that this is precisely the question that Paul asked… “Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?” Galatians 3:2.
“If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?” Luke 11:13 “In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, YE WERE (past tense) SEALED with that Holy Spirit of promise,” Ephesians 1:13. “And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby YE ARE (present tense) SEALED unto the day of redemption.” Ephesians 4:30
The seal is given us immediately when we receive the Holy Spirit. If you have the Holy Spirit you have the seal. If you do not have the Holy Spirit you do not have the seal. It really is that simple. The bottom line is, if you do not have the seal right now, then you are not saved!
So stay away from churches which teach the seal is exclusively a future happening. That teaching undermines the Gospel and deals a heavy blow against the believers assurance of Salvation. The Good News is if you are born again, “YE ARE (present tense) SEALED unto the day of redemption.” Ephesians 4:30.
The Seal of God isn’t something that you earn by becoming perfect or by meticulous obedience to the Law or by Sabbath-keeping! This teaching by the the Seventh-day Adventist prophet Ellen G. White, is a blatant contradiction against the Bible and the promises made to us in the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed. John 6:27
And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had yet being uncircumcised: that he might be the father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised; that righteousness might be imputed unto them also: Romans 4:11
Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity. 2 Timothy 2:19
According to SDA pioneer Uriah Smith, ancient seals contained the name/title of the ruler, the extent of his dominion, and his right to rule. These elements are all found in the fourth commandment (Ex. 20:8-11). Therefore, according to Seventh-day Adventists the Sabbath is the Seal of God.
Not surprisingly it is actually quite common for the Bible to mention God and declare that He created heaven and earth. These Bible verses each mention God’s name (LORD or God), His title (creator), and His dominion (heaven and earth). Genesis 14:22, Genesis 24:3, Deuteronomy 3:24, Deuteronomy 4:39, Deuteronomy 10:14, Joshua 2:11, 1 Kings 8:23, 2 Kings 9:15, 2 Chronicles 2:12, 2 Chronicles 6:14, Isaiah 37:16, Jeremiah 32:17, Acts 4:24, Acts 17:24″ Are any of these verses connected to Revelations “Seal of God?” Of course not!
The Bible says, “no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.” 1 Peter 1:20. Although Uriah Smiths argument on the surface is indeed logical, and even ingenious that does not negate the fact that this is a private interpretation. There is no scripture indicating that we are to use this type of connection to Interpret symbolism used in the prophecies of Revelation. Just because God’s name, title, and dominion appear within any of over a dozen Bible verses does not prove that any of them have any particular connection with Revelation’s “Seal of God.” To apply that logic to any of these other verses and claim any of them are the Seal of God is quite ludicrous. Well so much for Uriah Smith’s ‘ah ha’ moment.
Teaching that the Seal of God is the 7th day Sabbath Contradicts the Gospel
So lets set aside these private interpretations made by Uriah Smith for a moment and look at the heart of the matter. Teaching that the Seal of God is the 7th day Sabbath unequivocally contradicts the Bible. “Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?” Galatians 3:2. Teaching that Christians earn God’s approval and merit the Seal of God and the Holy Spirit through obedience to the law is an anti-christian doctrine.
This is precisely the “other gospel” that Paul warned against adopting and teaching in the Book of Galatians. Paul warned us with Anathema’s which are severest of condemnations against teaching this “other gospel” of salvation through the law (which is precisely what the Seventh-day Adventist prophet Ellen G. White has done in her writing on the Seal of God). See Galatians 1:8-9, then read the entire book of Galatians!
The danger in believing the seal of God is exclusively a future happening, is that millions of those who teach this way also teach that only those who become good enough through perfect obedience to the law will receive the seal. The truth is, we receive the seal of God through faith, the very moment we receive the Holy Spirit by believing in the promises of Jesus Christ.