mystery program

An Eternal House in the Heavens #10

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

“For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens” (2 Corinthians 5:1 KJV).

God already sees it! By faith, do you?

In the prophetic program (past or future), God forms a bloodline of a literal, physical, visible, earthly people—the nation Israel. Accordingly, He demands they perform literal, physical, visible, earthly works—physical circumcision, water baptism, tithing, Sabbath-Day observance, confession of sins, and so on. Moreover, He promises them literal, physical, visible, earthly demonstrations of His power—healed bodies, bountiful harvests, military victories, et cetera (signs, miracles, and wonders).

However, in the mystery program, our present-day, God is forming a spiritual, invisible, heavenly people—although just as real as Israel. The Bible calls it “the Church the Body of Christ,” people “blessed with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3). In our Dispensation of Grace, Father God is not forming a literal, physical, visible group of believers. Therefore, we are not looking for literal, physical, visible, earthly works of God. We are to be looking, with the eyes of faith, at the invisible, spiritual works of God (2 Corinthians 4:18; today’s Scripture). One of these invisible, spiritual blessings is a glorified body, “eternal in the heavens.”

Ironically, “faith healers” are actually emboldening doubt rather than faith. They would have us walk by sight when Scripture instructs us to walk by faith. We do not have to see God visibly working to know He is with us. Rather, we know He is with us because His Word says His Holy Spirit is working in us to produce Christ’s life: “That [Father God] would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith…” (Ephesians 3:16,17).

Saints, divine physical healing for our dispensation will occur at the Rapture. God is not interested in temporarily restoring these aging, weakening bodies. When the Lord Jesus Christ returns in the air to take us away to Heaven, we the Body of Christ will receive glorified bodies like unto Jesus Christ’s resurrected, glorious body (Philippians 3:20,21). Until then, we say “Amen!” 🙂

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Who are the people in 2 Corinthians 11:22—the 12 Apostles, or others?

To Know Dispensational Bible Study

Saturday, November 26, 2016

“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15 KJV).

Friend, may you come to know the proper system of Bible study as God wants you to know it!

To refute the position of “Bible only” (and bolster “Bible and tradition”), Roman Catholics complain resorting to Scripture alone only leads to confusion and thousands of Protestant denominations. They argue “Sacred Tradition” must be employed to “correctly interpret” Sacred Scripture. (Of course, they ignore the profound ignorance, worse confusion, and innumerable splits within Romanism!) No, there is nothing wrong with “Bible only.” (“Bible and tradition” is faulty because these two competing authorities end up as “tradition only!”) If you use Scripture as it instructs you, recognizing and esteeming the Holy Spirit’s teaching ministry, you will understand it.

Many years ago, two verses helped me grasp the Holy Scriptures. Acts 3:21 first: “Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.” There is something God has “spoken… since the world began” (since Adam was placed on Earth). The Apostle Peter’s ministry involved this prophetic program. Now, Romans 16:25: “Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,….” In stark contrast to Peter, the Apostle Paul declared his ministry involved the mystery program—truth God “kept secret since the world began,” but then revealed to Paul so he could teach us Gentiles (Romans 11:13). This eliminates the majority of Bible confusion!

Paul must never be harmonized with the rest of Scripture. Romans through Philemon, his epistles, are not to be conflated with Israel’s verses (the rest of the Bible). Christendom has experienced much trouble through the centuries because it mixed Israel and the Body of Christ, mixed law and grace, mixed heaven and earth, mixed prophecy and mystery, mixed Peter and Paul. They have not “rightly divided”—or properly separated—the dispensations (sets of instructions) God demands we differentiate. The problem is not with Scripture—it is with those misusing it!

For more information about dispensational Bible study, you may see: https://333wordsofgrace.wordpress.com/whats-dispensational-bible-study/.

The Precious Blood of Christ #3

Monday, September 19, 2016

“Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:18,19 KJV).

God the Father and God the Holy Ghost think the blood of Jesus Christ is “precious.” And you?

While God did not reveal the complete meaning of Jesus Christ’s death until the Apostle Paul, we can look back into some of the Bible’s most ancient portions and see God had the death of His Son in mind all along. For example, Acts 2:23 reminds us: “Him [Jesus Christ], being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain.” Before there ever was a creation—one angel, one devil, one human, one star, one tree, or even one atom—the three Members of the triune Godhead conferred. God the Father had a most glorious plan, God the Son would lay down His life to make that plan possible, and God the Holy Spirit would execute all the details.

God arranged it so that, as soon as sin entered the world, He began to teach man that sin meant an innocent life had to be taken, and innocent blood would have to be shed. The precedent was Genesis 3:21 (Adam and Eve); it carried on to the shed blood offered by Abel (Genesis 4:4) and Noah (Genesis 8:20). When we come to Israel in Egyptian bondage, the blood of the innocent Passover lamb saves them from God’s righteous wrath against their idolatry (Exodus 12:3-14). God said Israel is to observe the annual Passover literally “for ever” (verse 14). Throughout the Book of Leviticus, we read about various animal sacrifices and the priests’ daily shedding of animals’ blood to make atonement for sins. Israel’s national forgiveness relied on the annual Day of Atonement, involving more animals’ blood (Leviticus chapter 16).

That intricate religious calendar was God’s way of reinforcing in Israel’s mind the plan He had from before the foundation of the world. The “precious blood of Christ” was going to be shed….

Our latest Bible Q&A: “What does, ‘All Israel shall be saved,’ mean?

The Precious Blood of Christ #2

Sunday, September 18, 2016

“Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:18,19 KJV).

God the Father and God the Holy Ghost think the blood of Jesus Christ is “precious.” And you?

Unfortunately, since liberalism and modernism strangled “Bible-believing” (?) America during the mid-20th century, “Christian” teaching about Jesus’ blood has significantly decreased. For example, in a 1990 video, a preacher gave a sermon on that very subject. He said he had not heard one televangelist in the last 30 years (so, since 1960) present a message dedicated exclusively to the blood of Christ. They had delivered whole messages on other theological subjects—but never Jesus’ blood. That very aged brother went to heaven not long ago. We can only wonder how many televangelists he heard talk about the blood of Christ in the nearly 30 years since 1990! Friend, think about it. How many topical sermons have you ever heard about the blood of Christ—on television, radio, internet, or in person at a local church? Few… if any!

A prevalent objection to the “blood of Christ” is summarized as, “Christianity is a ‘slaughterhouse’ religion. The preaching of Calvary’s cross is a ‘violent’ message.” For fear of offending someone, the shed blood of Christ is vaguely, if ever, referenced. It is so “negative” a topic, such a “detestable” idea. In fact, some groups have taken great pains to remove from hymnals all songs that emphasize the blood of Christ. To them, the blood of Jesus Christ means nothing! But, what does the blood of Christ mean to us?

The very first time shed blood appears in Scripture is Genesis 3:21: “Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.” Once Adam and Eve sinned, God killed one or two animals. The animal skins were used to cover the physical bodies of Adam and Eve; the shed animal blood covered their spiritual bodies. That concept of shed blood for the forgiveness of sins continued all the way up through the Bible….

The Precious Blood of Christ #1

Saturday, September 17, 2016

“Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:18,19 KJV).

God the Father and God the Holy Ghost think the blood of Jesus Christ is “precious.” And you?

A layperson once asked a theologian in his particular denomination, “What does the blood of Jesus Christ mean to you?” The theologian gave a dry, non-personal, “scholarly” answer. Again, he was asked, and again, he spoke of the blood of Christ in a very distant manner. Time and time again, that “scholar” held firm to his standard, “academic” reply. What did the blood of Jesus Christ mean to this theologian? Evidently, it meant nothing to him, for he never answered the question about what it meant to him! He had merely, and repeatedly, analyzed the blood of Christ from a theological perspective. There was no heart faith in that divine blood! Unlike him, we should agree with today’s Scripture concerning Jesus’ blood being “precious.”

Now, just to be clear, we must rightly divide the word of truth. Remember, “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15). While Paul’s epistles, Romans through Philemon, are written to and about us, and we have no relation to Israel’s program, that does not mean we cannot see various parallels between our mystery program and Israel’s prophetic program. The blood of Christ is one example. Whether in prophecy—that which God “hath spoken since the world began” (Acts 3:21)—or in mystery—that which God “kept secret since the world began” (Romans 16:25)—the blood of Jesus Christ is the crucial foundation. As that shed blood cleanses Israel of her sins and saves her from everlasting hellfire, it cleanses us (the Body of Christ) of our sins and saves us from everlasting hellfire. Just as Christ’s blood is “precious” to believing Israel, so it is “precious” to us.

In our upcoming studies, we will exposit today’s Scripture to see just how “precious” the blood of Christ really is!

Understand and Enjoy the Bible! #15

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction (2 Peter 3:15,16 KJV).

Yes indeed, we can understand and enjoy the Holy Bible!

In his final epistle to the Church the Body of Christ, the Apostle Paul wrote: “Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things” (2 Timothy 2:7). Years earlier, he wrote: “Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost” (Romans 15:13).

The Holy Spirit Himself believes you will have “understanding in all things” if you “consider” what Paul wrote in his books, Romans through Philemon. He also believes that, once you understand His Word, then you will believe His Word, and finally you will enjoy His Word. Too many today do not understand the Bible, ever so discouraged by Satan’s schemes. Religious tradition has hidden dispensational Bible study from them. We MUST “rightly divide the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15)—separate “that which was kept secret since the world began” (Romans 16:25) from “that which was spoken since the world began” (Acts 3:21). Mystery MUST be separated from prophecy, Paul MUST be separated from Peter, the Body of Christ MUST be separated from the nation Israel, the Grace of God MUST be separated from the Law of Moses, et cetera.

Friends and brethren, now we know how to understand and enjoy the Bible; may we be faithful in telling others. Second Timothy 2:24-26: “[24] And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, [25] In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; [26] And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.”

-FINIS!-

Understand and Enjoy the Bible! #14

Monday, January 18, 2016

And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction (2 Peter 3:15,16 KJV).

May we hearken to these truths, lest we misunderstand and dislike the Holy Bible!

The God of Scripture is “longsuffering.” He is not currently pouring out His wrath on Christ-rejecting mankind. Had Israel’s prophetic program operated unbroken, that judgment would have surely come just after Calvary (Psalm 2:1-5; Acts 2:34-36; Acts 7:55,56; et cetera). However, God interrupted prophecy, delayed that judgment, and revealed the mystery program to and through the Apostle Paul (Saul of Tarsus). An unprophesied (secret) period of “grace and peace” extended to all mankind (Gentiles), as illustrated by the salvation of wicked Saul in Acts chapter 9 (1 Timothy 1:12-16). The heart of that mystery program is “the Dispensation of Grace,” doctrines and other truths currently applicable, only until “the fulness of the Gentiles” comes in (Romans 11:25).

Peter had preached salvation and blessing to Gentiles through Israel and her kingdom (Acts 3:19-26; cf. Isaiah 60:1-3; Genesis 12:1-3). Through Paul’s ministry and Gospel, “the Gospel of the Grace of God,” Jesus Christ’s finished crosswork on Calvary, salvation and blessing is currently going to Gentiles without Israel and her kingdom (Romans 11:11-13; Ephesians 3:1-11).

God has offered grace to all; He has been longsuffering, tolerating man’s sins for 20 centuries! Why? “The longsuffering of our Lord is salvation.” That more lost sinners (like Saul) be saved into the Body of Christ by simple faith in Christ alone, thus spared God’s wrath when prophecy resumes! Once our Dispensation of Grace closes, then and only then, God’s wrath and war will replace His grace and peace (1 Thessalonians 4:13–5:9; 2 Thessalonians 1:8-9, 2:1-13). When the scoffers Peter referenced asked about Jesus’ coming in vengeance, they were pitifully ignorant! The message of grace that Paul preached was the very reason why that wrath had not yet come!

Let us conclude this devotionals arc.

Special-edition Bible Q&A #225: “What about the ‘Jewish Roots’ Movement?
(This 22-page article systematically discusses the dangers of mixing Law and Grace concerning Christian living.)