In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.
Paul was writing the fledgling church to counteract wrong doctrine brought in by false teachers. In this section of scripture Paul is reminding believers that hearing the Gospel message and knowing about Jesus was not enough to achieve salvation. We not only need to hear the Gospel message, but we must also believe it is the truth of God and accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior. Thereby placing our trust in Him alone, through faith alone. In other words, we need to believe Jesus is who He claimed to be. That is very God, who took on humanity, that He is the Author of all creation. Jesus, the living God of Heaven, stepped out of eternity and took on humanity for no other purpose than to save us from our sins and reconcile fallen humanity with a holy God. It’s not enough to know about Jesus, it’s not enough to know family or friends who are saved, and it’s not enough to go to church on a regular basis. We must understand, accept and believe the Gospel message for ourselves. We ourselves, must have a personal relationship with Jesus and accept Him as our Lord, Savior and God. As believers and followers of Christ, God the Father sends us His Holy Spirit to indwell and secure us until the day of our redemption.
The Holy Spirit helps to keep us “in Christ,” until that moment in time, when we go home and see Jesus face to face. This means the presence of the Holy Spirit is always with us and in our lives. He is our guarantee that Jesus will not abandon us. The Holy Spirit helps to secure for us the eternity which awaits us, one spent in the presence of Christ Jesus our Lord. Moreover, He does so through God’s process of spiritual growth called “Sanctification.” Through the study of God’s word, the Bible and the Holy Spirit’s work in our hearts and minds, we grow and mature in the knowledge of who Jesus is and what He has done for us. The term used for “sealed” in this section of scripture, carries the meaning of stamping or sealing something with an official mark of identification as to ownership. In other words, Paul is telling us that the indwelling of the Holy Spirit is our mark of identification as children of God and joint heirs with Jesus in the kingdom of God. He is God’s mark of ownership because we now belong to Christ. Moreover, from the time of our salvation till the time we see Jesus face to face, the Holy Spirit carries out God’s work of sanctification, thereby making us more effective for God’s kingdom work here in this fallen world.