Do not damage earth or sea or the trees, until we have marked the servants of our God with a seal on their foreheads. (Revelation 7:3)
Christians are marked by the blood of Jesus. That mark is like a brand. That brand reminds us that we belong to Jesus.
If we always saw the mark of Jesus on other people, would our relationships change? Would we think any differently about them? Treat them any differently? Talk to them or about them any differently? Or, if we always saw the mark of Jesus on ourselves when we looked in the mirror, would we treat ourselves any differently? Talk to ourselves any differently?
I once posed these questions in a sermon. One couple took them very seriously. One reason why they took them so seriously was that their marriage was in trouble. Almost as a “last-ditch” effort, they decided to make the sign of the cross on each other’s foreheads every night before going to sleep and every morning when they said goodbye.
After doing this exercise for about six months, they shared that this exercise had saved their marriage. Both of them admitted that it took them several weeks before they could do this exercise without much discomfort. In time, they said that seeing the mark of Jesus on their spouse changed how they thought about and talked to them. Seeing the mark of Jesus on each other helped them to fall in love and to cherish each other again.
If we always saw the mark of Jesus on others and on ourselves, would we treat others and ourselves any differently? I believe so.
I encourage us to think and pray about seeing others and ourselves as being marked, sealed, and branded by Jesus. As Christians, we don’t belong to ourselves. Just as Jesus sees that mark on us and never forgets that we belong to Him, we need to see that same mark on others and ourselves and remember to whom we all belong.
- What does being “marked” by Jesus mean to you?
- How could remembering and recognizing that others are “marked” by Jesus impact your relationships?
- After that couple had shared their story about how marking each other with the sign of the cross had saved their marriage, they then made the sign of the cross on each other right before me. Is there someone you need to mark, sign, and brand today in the name of Jesus?