But what does the Lord mean when He says do certain things, and they shall serve as a distinguishing mark on your hand and on your forehead, as He says in Exodus 13.6-9 and 13.11-16; or bind My words on your hand and on your forehead as a distinguishing mark, as He says in Deuteronomy 6:6-8 and 11:18?
In Exodus the Lord says to do something, and that doing shall be as if you had a distinguishing mark on your hand and forehead. He furthermore says that the doing of it shall serve as a reminder of something else on your forehead. Well, doing involves the action of the body, or more specifically, the hand: it is with the hand that we act, make, give, prepare feasts or sacrifices or any other thing. Remembering something involves the action of the mind, or figuratively, the forehead. I believe the Lord is telling us, in Exodus, that what we do and what we think about will serve to mark us — and if we do the things He has commanded and remember why we are doing them – that the Lord is our Deliverer and Redeemer – we will be marked as the Lord’s.
In Deuteronomy, the Lord says to keep His words and His commandments in our hearts. To teach them and talk of them, at all times, and in all places. In Hebrew thought, we have to remember, that keeping the Lord’s word in our hearts involves obeying it, too. And if we keep His word in our hearts (and by implication, obey it from our hearts in our lives), then that word will be bound on our hands and foreheads; i.e. by the action of our hand and the thoughts our mind we will be marked as the Lord’s.
So what we have seen is that those who belong to the Lord are also marked on their hand and their forehead. It is their actions, what they do, their way of life, their obedience to the word of the Lord, that marks them on their hand, the agent of action; and it is their remembering what the Lord has done for them, why they observe feasts and give offerings, speaking of and teaching the Lord’s word at all times and in all places — their worldview and thoughts — that marks them on their forehead, the agent of the thoughts of the mind.
Going through the whole Bible, there isn’t another mention of marking, hands, and foreheads, until we get to Revelation.
To be continued …
Update: continued in Marked on the hand and forehead, part four