“And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.” ~ Revelation 7:2-3
It has been noted that the vision of the angel coming from the east, is likely a vision of Christ. The east is the same direction the temple faced symbolizing the rising of light and truth from God. This angel has “the seal of God” and has authority and power over the four angels (a ministry) who held “the four winds of the earth.” This angel commanded the four other angels to not harm the earth until God’s servants were sealed in their foreheads. The purpose was to seal the servants in their foreheads with a special grace and understanding that would set them apart from the rest of the wicked hypocrisies of religion in earth.
Note: The Lord can and does seal honest hearts at any time, but this type of sealing with truth and understanding did especially take place during the late 1800s when a sixth seal ministry went forth preaching the clarity of complete deliverance from sin and division. A people stood out clear of the divisions of religion to live holy and in unity, only following the Word of God and the Holy Spirit. A revival of souls being saved came forth and at that time which spread across the country and to many countries. (But, as with many revivals of the past, still later many again would allow the flames to cool and a silence in general would begin to be felt.)
Notice that in Revelation 7 he said: “And I heard the number of them which were sealed.” This seal caused an effect of worship from their hearts that could be sensed and felt by others, even in how they sounded. The 144,000 are a representative sample of spiritual Israel. They represent people that needed to be “sealed” prior to a greater judgement upon falseness. But there are still many others who have been saved, and that still will be saved, so immediately after their sealing, we see and hear:
“After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.” ~ Revelation 7:9-10
And so the 144,000 are also a representative sample of all the saved in heaven and earth. These people are clearly identified as those who “came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” (Revelation 7:14)
All these souls are now blessed for their faithfulness by the very presence and tender watch care of God where he “shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.” ~ Revelation 7:17
Next, following this sealing and starting in Revelation 8, the beginning of a series of judgments are sounded out against the hypocrites who are around God’s people. The true people of God do not take physical weapons to hurt people that are not saved! Those that are not sealed with a knowledge of truth in their minds, hearts and souls, will be spiritually hurt, because:
“For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear? Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.” ~ 1 Peter 4:17-19
This marking of the true people of God with a seal, and the taking care of their sorrows and tears because of the hypocrisy and persecution of others, has a similar pattern in earlier books of the Bible. Only the Holy Spirit can direct this sealing or marking because he clearly knows what is in the heart.
In the Old Testament, the following sealing was accomplished prior to a great spiritual and physical slaughter upon the hypocrites among God’s people:
“And the Lord said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.” ~ Ezekiel 9:4
God always has recognized those who are grieved because of ungodliness and hypocrisy around them. So in the time of judgement he has a special watchcare over his own.
Now also notice that following the great slaughter, there was an anointing placed upon the remaining true people of God by the pouring out Holy Ghost! (Read Ezekiel chapters 9 and 10.)
In Revelation 8 (next) this is exactly what happens after a short period of silence. The Holy Ghost fire is poured out upon God’s people!
Have you been sealed with the truth of complete deliverance from sin? Do you have a clear vision and understanding of spiritual things in your heart and mind? Are you gathered together in worship with the rest who have been sealed by the truth?