by John Piper of DesiringGod.com
The Spirit Makes Us Secure
In him…you…were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory. —Ephesians 1:13-14
God’s great desire for his people is that we feel secure in his love and in his power. Everything else in life may be unstable—our health, our family, our job, our education, our society, our world. At any of these levels you may feel as if you are out on a ledge forty stories up in an unpredictable wind. You feel yourself losing balance and falling, and every brick you grab pulls out of its mortar.
Since God does all things for the praise of his glory, and since believing his Word magnifies that glory, God takes decisive steps to secure for himself the magnification of his glory forever: he seals the believer with the Holy Spirit, and guarantees that we will come to our inheritance praising his glory.
God is so passionately committed to having a people for his own possession who live forever for the praise of his glory that he is not about to let our eternal destiny depend on our native powers of willing or doing. He commissions his Holy Spirit to enter our lives and to make us secure forever.
God sends the Holy Spirit as a preserving seal to lock in our faith, as an authenticating seal to validate our sonship, and as a protecting seal to keep out destructive forces. The point is that God wants us to feel secure and safe in his love and power.
In Ephesians 1:14, God is saying, “My great desire for those who believe in me is that you feel secure in my love. I have chosen you before the foundation of the world. I have predestined you to be my children forever. I have redeemed you by the blood of my Son. And I have put my Spirit in you as a seal and a guarantee. Therefore, you will receive the inheritance and praise the glory of my grace forever and ever.
And I tell you this here in Ephesians 1 because I want you to feel secure in my love and my power. I don’t promise you an easy life. In fact, through many tribulations you must enter the kingdom (Acts 14:22). Let me say it again: I have chosen you. I have predestined you; I have redeemed you; I have sealed you by my Spirit. Your inheritance is sure, because I am passionately committed to magnify the glory of my grace in your salvation.”