Then I looked, and there was the lamb standing on Mount Zion! With him were 144,000 people who had his name and his Father’s name written on their foreheads. (Rev 14:1)
The Revelation chapter 7 speaks of the seal that marks the servants of God
The Revelation speaks of a well-defined (144,000) group of righteous believers on whose forehead is written the names of Jesus and God. Here is, in my interpretation, the group sealed by the angels who are part of the first resurrection and who receive immortality as they ascend in spirit body up to the sky (clouds, not heaven). Luke 10:20 refers to the same rationale that their names are written (in the Book of Life) in the heavens.
– The 144,000 righteous people marked with a seal meet with Jesus on Mount Zion in front of Christ’s throne. Verse 14: 3 proves that they have come from the earth. Rev 7:3 says Don’t harm the land, the sea, or the trees until we have marked the servants of our God with a seal on their foreheads. – From this we can conclude that the sealed ones are righteous and alive at that moment of sealing.
7:4 I heard the number of those who were sealed: 144,000. Those who were sealed were from every tribe of Israel.
I’ve been under the impression that 144,000 is a symbolic number. It is supported by the fact that the ascending mass of the first resurrection and the righteous living on earth at the moment together form a significantly larger number than 144,000. How much do they total, the Bible does not tell. These sealed and righteous rising form a group that outright forms the leadership of the kingdom of God, the kings and priests. The sealed 144,000 sealed on earth, however, appear in verse 14:3 without the group of righteous resurrected from the dead. Why are not they involved? Is the sealed 144,000 still a precise figure, and if so, what is their relationship with the others of resurrection? The following verse 14:4 says, among other things, .. and they follow the lamb wherever he goes. They have been redeemed from among humanity as the first fruits for God and the lamb. 144,000 are in a special position; they have been bought for the first fruits to God and Christ and they follow Christ wherever He goes.
The seventh chapter of Revelation tells us about the seals printed on the foreheads of God’s servants:
7:2 And I saw another angel coming up from the rising of the sun, having a seal of the living God. And he cried with a great voice to the four angels to whom it was given to them to harm the earth and the sea, saying, 3 Do not harm the earth, nor the sea, nor the trees, until we seal the servants of our God on their foreheads. – From this we can conclude that the sealed ones are righteous and alive at that moment of sealing.
Rev 14:1 And I saw, and behold, the Lamb standing on Mount Zion! And with Him were a hundred and forty four thousands, with the name of His Father having been written on their foreheads. 3 And they sing as a new song before the throne, and before the four living creatures and the elders. And no one was able to learn the song except the hundred and forty four thousands, those having been redeemed from the earth.
The 144,000 righteous humans marked with a seal meet with Jesus on Mount Zion in front of Christ’s throne. Verse 14:3 proves that they have come from the earth. Rev 7:3 says: Do not harm the earth or the sea or the trees until we have sealed the servants of our God on their foreheads. – From this we can conclude that the sealed ones are righteous and alive at that moment of sealing.
Another argument of at least the same weight is shown in verse Rev. 5: 9: … You were slain, and purchased for God with your blood men from every tribe and tongue and people and nation.
–If Jesus has with his death bought to God people of all possible languages, and nations, which consists of the Israel of God, surely this group also includes those saints who have received the seal of God and are worthy of the first resurrection, and thus will be selected to lead the kingdom of God. I think these 144,000 are the future leaders of the coming kingdom. How then is it possible that the Bible says they are from the twelve tribes of Israel, not from all the peoples and languages of the earth?
Have a look at the next verse as well: “You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign on the earth.”
The rulers and priests of this kingdom who shall reign over the entire earth are, after verse 9 and 10, the very ones who come from all the peoples of the world, not just from the twelve families of Israel.
Compare the above to the following verse!
And I heard the number of those who were sealed, one hundred and forty-four thousand sealed from every tribe of the sons of Israel (Rev 7:4)
Verse 7:4 states that they are from all the tribes of the children of Israel, out of the twelve tribes of the sons of Israel, or Jacob. That is how many scholars interpret this. There are two problems. Firstly, does the children of Israel refer to the tribes of natural Israel or God of Israel? When you check the list of generations to come after the verse, note that it does not fully comply with the list of Jacob’s boys. From this one could conclude that what is meant is God of Israel. When the Jews did not accept Jesus as their Messiah, the disciples received a mission statement to take the gospel to the whole world. Born again righteous of the Holy Spirit were around the world and natural Israel was left behind. Someone may interpret this verse so that these are messianic Jews who have accepted Christ as their savior. But still, the puzzle of the tribe list remains open.
How do we settle this controversy?
a) There are two different matters; 144.000 who follow Jesus where ever He goes are not the group of people who will rule the kingdom with Jesus
b) The 144.000 from the twelve tribes of Israel does not mean the tribes from Jacob’s sons but it means so-called God’s Israel i.e. holy ones from all around the world