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Questions From Readers

Questions From Readers

What are the “token” and the “seal” that each anointed Christian receives from God?​—2 Cor. 1:21, 22; ftn.

In the past, a seal ring was pressed into clay or wax to authenticate a document

Token: According to one reference work, the Greek term translated “token” at 2 Corinthians 1:22 was “a legal and commercial technical term” meaning “first instalment, deposit, down payment, pledge, that pays a part of the purchase price in advance, and so secures a legal claim to the article in question, or makes a contract valid.” In the case of anointed ones, the full payment, or reward, is described at 2 Corinthians 5:1-5 as involving the putting on of an incorruptible heavenly body. The reward also includes receiving the gift of immortality.​—1 Cor. 15:48-54.

In modern Greek, a related expression is used for an engagement ring. This is a fitting illustration for those who will become part of Christ’s figurative wife.​—2 Cor. 11:2; Rev. 21:2, 9.

Seal: In the past, a seal was used as a signature to prove ownership, authenticity, or agreement. In the case of the anointed, they are “sealed,” or branded, figuratively by holy spirit as God’s possession. (Eph. 1:13, 14) This seal is not made permanent, though, until either sometime before the person dies faithful or sometime before the outbreak of the great tribulation.​—Eph. 4:30; Rev. 7:2-4.