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Then I saw another angel ascending from the east,[a] who had the seal of the living God.[b] He shouted out with a loud voice to the four angels who had been given power to damage earth and sea, saying, “Do not damage the earth, the sea, or the trees until we[c] have marked the loving servants of our God with a seal on their foreheads.”[d]

And I discovered the number of those who were sealed. It was one hundred and forty-four thousand,[e] sealed out of every tribe of Israel’s people.[f]

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  1. Revelation 7:2 Or “from the sun rising.” The east is often associated with blessings and the place from which God appears (Gen. 2:8; Ezek. 43:1-4; Matt. 2:1). The messenger was not descending from the east, but ascending. The star of Jesus was rising in the east. This sealing messenger represents the living God and points to Christ, who is rising in his people, bringing the light of a new day. It is a company of messengers arising out of the light of the sunrise to bring the seal of God upon his people.
  2. Revelation 7:2 This seal is the mind of Christ, for it goes on the forehead (thoughts). Until we have the mind of Christ, we are incapable of discerning properly. Partaking of Christ’s mind empowers us to be righteous judges, righteous kings, and righteous priests. This seal is more than a seal of protection from the coming judgments, but a seal that qualifies them to bring the righteous judgments of God to the earth. This is the nature of God being written upon the foreheads and minds of his holy ones.
  3. Revelation 7:3 This is not one messenger; “he” has become “we.”
  4. Revelation 7:3 This mighty angel has more authority than the four (the number for worldwide or universality) who would damage the earth, sea, and trees. It is the angel carrying the seal of God that speaks of God’s grace and mercy, which will always triumph over judgment (James 2:13). The seal on their foreheads is the mind of Christ, the mark of the Christ. The winds of judgment are being held back until the sons of God have the thoughts and mind of Christ. To be “sealed” means to be protected from judgment (Ezek. 9:4-6). The seal of lamb’s blood on the doors of the Israelites protected them from the death angel. The new covenant seal is the Holy Spirit (the mind of Christ) that opens our hearts to the restoration of heaven. We are the seven-sealed scroll that is broken open so that the all-conquering life of Christ will subdue all things (Phil. 3:21). We are living letters, written not with ink but by the Spirit of God writing truth upon our hearts. In the volume of the book (scroll) it is written about Christ (Ps. 40:7).
  5. Revelation 7:4 One hundred and forty-four thousand is 12 × 12 × 1,000. This speaks of completeness and represents God raising up sons and daughters who carry fully his image and likeness. It is not meant to be “a literal head count,” but showing us who they are. It is the number of Christ multiplied in his sons and daughters coming into the likeness of the Son.
  6. Revelation 7:4 “Israel’s people” are those who have wrestled with their nature and have been given a new name, a new nature, and have become princes with God. See Gen. 28:24-28; Gal. 3:29. The names of the twelve tribes of princes with God speak of the virtues of their names. Just as the twelve tribes were not birthed at the same time, so they become a picture of our progression in spiritual life from one “tribe” to another, from glory to glory.