Thursday, July 7, 2011


Cor 1:21,22 "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."

When I read these verses I feel secure. Why? Because God does three things in our lives if we are in Christ. He establishes us, He anoints us and He seals us.

This is Paul's second letter to the Corinthian church. It must have been tough writing the first one. No one likes confrontation. No one likes to get in the face of another person or another group and tell them that they are sinning. Not even Paul. But his first letter teaches us that this is necessary sometimes. If we want to see growth, if we want to see stability, if we want to see holiness in individual lives and the life of churches, we have to be willing to do the hard thing and hold each other accountable. Paul did this. But then, I think he watched the Corinthian church's response to his letter and he thought he needed to write to them again…and this time he starts out with the topic of comforting one another. At the beginning of his first letter he hit them head on with the problem of their division. At the beginning of this letter he starts out with "the Father of mercies and God of all comfort." A totally different tone.

Then he writes this: "We are established. We are anointed. We are sealed." He was telling the Corinthian church they both they and he (he uses the word 'us') are secure. And so are we…so am I. Why should they feel secure? Why should I feel secure? Because here is the trinity Christ, God and the Holy Spirit all involved in this work. And we are established. We are firm. We will not be moved. We are anointed. God has placed His hand on us and we have been given gifts confirming who we are. We are His and He is working through us. And we are sealed. This is like when they used to take wax and press the king's ring into the wax when a decree was issued. It was confirmed. There was no doubt that this was something that the king wanted and would be done. So it is with us. God has placed His eternal mark in our lives and His work will be done in and through us. We are a sure thing in His kingdom and nothing can change that.

Just to be sure, however, Paul uses one more word: guarantee. The actual word is "earnest" or down payment. In contract law this is called "consideration". It is what is given as a pledge that this thing will absolutely be done. Here Paul is saying that the Holy Spirit is God's down payment, consideration, guarantee. Absolutely nothing can change our relationship with Him…and I am thankful.

Talk about security. Talk about eternal security. There is no doubt. We are eternally secure in Christ because the Trinity, working together, has established us, anointed us and sealed us. It is guaranteed. Thank God.

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