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From Eden to Eden

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    CHAPTER XVII. THE SEAL AND THE MARK

    The Third Angel’s Message, in Revelation 14:9-12, is the last that will be given to this world. When this closes, the Son of man will come to reap the harvest of the earth. Because probation closes with this message, therefore it is given in the most terrible language that the Bible contains. It is as follows:FEE 214.1

    “And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, the same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb; and the smoke of their torment ascendeth up forever and ever; and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name. Here is the patience of the saints; here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.”FEE 214.2

    It has been seen that the beast of this prophecy represents the papacy; that the image is made by the beast with two horns, that is, the United States of America. The message is not confined to any one country. Though the work of the image may be somewhat local, the warning is against the worship of the beast, whose power and influence are recognized everywhere. It also warns against receiving the mark of the beast in the forehead or in the hand. It now remains to point out what is the mark of the beast. When this is done, the message is understood in all its particulars.FEE 214.3

    To explain this message we must examine other texts which refer to the same time. Revelation 6:12-17 contains a vision of the opening of the sixth seal, giving the signs of the Lord’s coming, and introducing the terrors of the last day. In chapter 7:1-3, are seen four angels holding four winds, until the servants of God are sealed in their foreheads. In Daniel 7:2, 3, the striving of the four winds was said to bring up four great beasts, which represented the four great kingdoms which ruled over the whole earth. These kings arose by successive wars, in which one kingdom was thrown down, and another arose in its place. In Revelation 7, the four winds indicate wars and strife in the four quarters of the earth. These are the same as the battle of the great day of God Almighty, just as the Lord comes. Revelation 16:14, 15. Before that day of terror comes, a special work must be done for the servants of God, who have to stand complete when the Lord Jesus closes his work of intercession in Heaven. It is an awful hour that is coming, and a thorough preparation is needed to stand in the battle of the day of the Lord. Ezekiel 13:5.FEE 214.4

    The same time and circumstances are presented in Ezekiel 9. They are represented under a vision of Jerusalem, and an angel is directed to set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and cry for the abominations that are done in the midst thereof. And other angels are told to go after him and smite and slay utterly; neither to spare nor to pity, but to destroy all upon whom the mark was not set. Verses 4-6. There is a time of utter destruction impending, when the priesthood of Jesus is ended, and probation is closed. That is the time of this prophecy, the same as Revelation 7:1-3.FEE 215.1

    Again, after the persecution of Revelation 13 is described, there is given a view of the triumph of the persecuted saints standing on the Mount Zion with the Lamb, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads. This is after the Son of man has come to redeem them. Now we have three similar views of the saints of God,—one, where a seal is put in their foreheads, before the winds of war blow on the earth; a second, where a mark is set on their foreheads, before the sword of utter destruction is sent forth; the third, where they have passed through the time of trouble, having the Father’s name in their foreheads. But all these refer to the same thing; the seal and the mark are the same as having the Father’s name in their foreheads. In Romans 4:11, also, we learn that sign and seal mean the same thing, both being in this text referred to circumcision. Both indicate a mark whereby a person or thing may be identified.FEE 215.2

    Now we have the two classes, both marked, the servants of God in their foreheads, and the worshipers of the beast in their foreheads or in their hands. But we do not suppose, in either case, that a literal mark or stamp is put upon them, but that something attaches to them by which they may be known, respectively, as the servants of God, or the worshipers of the beast. In the Third Angel’s Message these two classes are represented—one, as worshiping the beast and receiving his mark; the other, as keeping the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus. But inasmuch as the mark in the foreheads of the servants of God is said to contain the Father’s name, we must look for this sign in the commandments of God, rather than in the faith of Jesus. In searching out this matter our first inquiry will be—FEE 216.1

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