This is the 5th post in a series, for the previous entry please click HERE.
As a Seventh-Day Adventist I was taught that the Seal of God in the last days was keeping the Sabbath. If you don’t keep the Sabbath after what they call “probation” you lose your salvation. This is ultimately a false gospel, Paul has condemned such heresy as “anathema” in (Gal 1:8).
Essentially the false gospel works like this, if you learn the SDA “truth” and turn away from it you are lost from grace no matter what, this would be an individual close of probation where you receive the mark of the beast. According to SDA teachings this applies to me now. The other close of probation is general according to SDA teaching. It occurs at a time unknown in the future and will apply to all those who submit to the “National Sunday Law”, which is supposed to be a law that the Pope and POTUS will enforce on either the whole world or just the United States. The reason this is a false gospel is that it is different than the one once and for all delivered to the saints by the apostles (Jude 1:3). Paul explains the real gospel in (1 Cor 15:1-8)(Eph 2:8-9).
Whether they say it directly or not SDA teach that ultimately your salvation is dependent on Sabbath keeping. They might try to couch it in such terms that indicate that only those who truly have been saved will keep the sabbath, but even by flipping it the requirement ends up the same as to prove one has been saved they must then keep the sabbath. There is no functional difference in their teaching. It gets even more sticky than that though because there are so many different ideas about what keeping the Sabbath means. There is no way to know for sure if you are doing it right. Then all of a sudden something new gets invented and the elders have to come together and decide if its okay to use that new gadget on the Sabbath.
For example, when I was a kid people would argue at length as to whether or not you could record your favorite Saturday shows with the VCR. Some said it was fine because you can watch the show on Sunday. Others say no, recording a show with the VCR is the same thing as requiring your Maidservant or Manservant to work for you.
Even though SDA teachings have damned me to the mark of the beast I have no fear. I am a baptized forgiven child of God. The Bible teaches a concept called means of Grace. The Seventh Day Sabbath is not a means of grace, it is simply old covenant law. The Bible teaches that God gives us the Faith unto his justifying Grace:
faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Rom 10:17 KJV
Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: 1 Cor 15:3-4 KJV
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. Eph 2:8-9 KJV
As this miracle of Faith and Grace transpire God seals us, not with a law but with himself. God the Holy Spirit of promise is our seal.
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 sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory. Eph 1:13-14 KJV
Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God; Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts. 2 Cor 1:21-22 KJV
And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Eph 4:30 KJV
For those of you who are familiar with these scriptures and did not grow up in an SDA church the above may sound like a no-brainer. But I cannot convey how much of a joy it was to me personally to learn that I am sealed by the Holy Ghost, not by the Sabbath. I love God the Holy Spirit, he is wonderful. He guides me and speaks to me through my Bible everyday. I cant tell you what a relief it is to rest in his truth.
Since the above verses prove that the Holy Ghost is the Seal of God, it therefore follows logic that whatever the Mark of the Beast is it wont be Sunday Christian Church Services.