Day of Christ

The Day of Christ begins with the appearing (the epiphaneia) and kingdom (basileia ) of Jesus Christ (2 Tim.4:1) and the blazing forth of the glory of the great God, even our Savior Jesus Christ (Titus 2:13). This is when the hope of the calling of the Mystery is realized. This is when our faith gives way to sight. This is the next event on God's prophetic clock. This is when Christ Jesus, in His role as the Head of the high calling, convenes [calls into session] His Ecclesia (Church) which is His Body. As the Great Convoker, He, alone, calls His Ecclesia into session. This marks His assumption of sovereignty over the nations. Those who have been memberd into “the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” will either be raised out from among the dead, or will be changed from mortal to immortal, and will take their place, or station, in His Government. Concurrently with the many events taking place when Christ Jesus assumes sovereignty over mankind and the nations, the Holy Spirit (the Comforter) will actively and aggressively restrain evil (John 16:7-13). People who sin will die for their own sin (Jer. 31:30). The Spirit will hinder transgressions because man’s conscience will have been quickened (made alive). The Day of Christ is synonymous with all of the above, including the Kingdom of God, and comes before the tribulation and the second coming (Parousia) of Christ. During the Day of Christ, heaven and earth will be governed by Christ Jesus from His heavenly Throne. This dispensation is set in contrast to the Millennium or the Day of the Lord. To say the two are the same is to say that “one-plus-one equals one.” Most all Christians realize that the Day of the Lord (i.e. the Tribulation and the Millennium) begins with revolution, bloodshed and violence which will be an unprecedented event in all of human history. The Old Testament has a lot to say about this Day—the Day of the LORD. Isaiah speaks about the Lord's imposition upon the world of His Millennial Rule; “For, behold, the LORD will come with fire, and with His chariots like a whirlwind, to render His anger with wrath, and His rebuke with flames of fire. For by fire and by His sword will the Lord plead with all flesh: and the slain of the Lord will be many” (Isa. 66:15-16). Psalm 50:3 says; "Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence: A fire shall devour before Him, and it shall be very tempestuous round about Him." Psalm 97:3; “A fire goeth before Him, and burneth up His enemies round about.” These verses relate to Jesus Christ Personally returning to earth to put an end to the nation’s revolt against His Rule from heaven (2 Thess. 2:1-12). When the Kingdom of God comes to Israel, it comes silently, “without observation” (Lu.17:22). It will not come suddenly or dramatically. Its’ coming is likened; “as if a man should cast seed into the ground; And should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how. For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear” (Mk. 4:26-28). When the Kingdom comes, it comes without calamity with no harm being done to anyone. Notice a much overlooked passage; “He shall not strive, nor cry; neither shall any man hear His voice in the streets. A bruised reed shall He not break, and smoking flax shall He not quench, till He send forth judgment unto victory” (Matt.12:19-20). Matthew quotes from Isaiah 42:1-4 which informs us that the Kingdom (i.e God’s Government) begins with the Gentile nations. Israel will not be a nation at this time. They will still be scattered, or dispersed, among the nations. While ruling over the nations, the Lord begins His work of re-gathering the Jews. Over time, He leads them back to the Promised Land ─as believers. No unbelieving Jew will be brought back to Palestine; no, not one! The unbelieving will remain scattered among the nations. [This brings up the question; ‘What about the Israel that now is?’ All we’ll say for now is; the present Israel is not of God’s doing. When He brings them back, there will be no disputes regarding borders or whose land it is]. “And I will purge out from among you the rebels, and them that transgress against me: I will bring them forth out of the country where they sojourn, and they shall not enter into the land of Israel: and ye shall know that I am the LORD” (Ezk.20:38). If words have any meaning, then we must conclude that something begins silently, mysteriously, without observation, without strife, without Christ being heard, and without damage being inflicted. On the other hand, something else begins (i.e. the Lord’s Day) with a colossal display of vengeance, wrath, and cataclysmic punishment which will be openly displayed. It is a contradiction to insist that the two descriptions relate to the beginning of the same event. In plainer words, the Prophetic Word informs us that there is coming the Day of Christ which is another term for the coming Kingdom of God. We are met with a non-Scriptural term, The Millennium, which relates to the 1000 year reign of Christ upon the earth. The Biblical term for this is the Day of the Lord. It is essential to distinguish between the two. The Holy Spirit does. We should do so, also. If we force all truths connected to the Day of Christ into the Day of the Lord, the result is utter confusion. Not only that, but we rob the Lord Jesus Christ of His Day of Exaltation. During the Day of Christ, He will draw, or compel, all men unto Himself. He will be exalted from the earth as every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess that He is Lord to the Glory of God the Father. His Day begins with His “appearing and Kingdom,” and He begins to judge the quick and the dead. (2 Tim.4:1). This is when the glory of the great God, even Jesus Christ our Savior, blazes forth (Titus 2:13). Isaiah speaks of this event in 40:5; “And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together” and at the same time. What is seen is the glory of the LORD, not the LORD descending from Heaven; to this, Numbers 14:21 agrees; “But truly as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the LORD.” When the Kingdom comes, “the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters covers the sea” (Hab.2:14). The Psalmist says; “And blessed be His glorious Name forever: and let the whole earth be filled with His glory” (72:19). The world will experience the revealing of His Glory without Christ Jesus leaving His Heavenly Throne. The shining forth of the glory of God takes place before the Day of the LORD. It is noted in Isaiah's vision that the seraphim see Christ's Day and say; “Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of Hosts: the earth is full of His glory.” During the Day of Christ, the “times of refreshing comes from the presence of the LORD.” All things are rejuvenated while the Heavens retain Christ (Acts 3:19-21). The pristine, pre-Noah flood conditions will be re-created (Isa. 65:17; 66:22). When the Day of Christ begins, all of mankind will be enlightened by the Holy Spirit and realize that Jesus Christ is LORD! Christ will begin His benevolent rule of the world. Then, He will begin converting His ancient people, Israel. Read Ezekiel 20:23-33, and notice how the Lord begins a work in their hearts and will lead them back into the Holy Land as a Christ-believing people. As the Day of Christ draws to a close, the restraints of the Spirit are gradually withdrawn.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Mid Acts Just Not Getting Right Division Yet

Formerly Mid Acts - NOW ACTS 28
"You cannot find the answer to a question you're not asking." (Mid Acts Brother Scott Mitchell of Grace Family Bible Online) I owe to him the raising of the question for which I then tried to find the answer, which is, "Why does Paul insist his gospel can be found in the Old Testament prophets?"
Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Is the creation of 2Cor.5:17 and the new creature of Gals.6, the creation of the one new man found in Ephesians 2?

Is the creation of 2Cor.5:17 and the new creature of Gals.6, the creation of the one new man found in Ephesians 2?

Brian Kelson answers:

Mid-Acts and Acts 28ers agree, there are many wonderful truths in Paul, but here is where we differ, not all of those truths are about us today.
Certainly the Jew and Gentile believers of Galatians were justified without the works of the Law for example. They were made righteous by grace through faith but those believers were not members of the church which is His Body, they were the seed of Abraham and to be blessed with faithful Abraham in the Promised Land as Gals.3 clearly says.
Having failed to test the things differing in Paul (Phils:1:9-10), Mid-Acts believe everything Paul wrote contains within it some unveiling of the mystery of Ephesians. They believe the Acts period was a transition; Paul had some progressive revelation which was finalized, or reached its ultimate revelations in Ephesians and Colossians. This we continue to find from Paul’s writings is indeed scripturally groundless on both points. The very subject matter of Paul’s letters negates this misplaced viewpoint and divides his letters into two distinct dispensational groups.
During the Acts period Paul was witnessing both to small and great, saying none other things than those which the prophets and Moses did say should come. He held embraced the hope of Israel, worshipped the God of Israel’s fathers, and had not offended the Jews in anything, Acts 24:14, 25:8, 26:6-7, 22, & 28:20. I’m certain if Paul had preached during Acts, the truth of Ephesians that the Jews
no longer held any dispensational advantage, he would have offended many.
Where Mid-Acts fail (and most other Christians for that matter), is in their inability to distinguish between redemptive truths common to all dispensations and dispensational truths unique to each one. Redemption through our Lord’s shed blood, faith and righteousness reckoned are not unique to our present calling, they can be found in type, shadow and prophesy from page one of the sacred Word. Certainly, some of these precious redemptive doctrines are highlighted and expounded in Paul’s Acts period letters but this fact does not demand or prove in any way that the nation of Israel had been set aside and/or our new calling was introduced or being unfolded.
Because of this failure to rightly divide continuing and discontinuing truths, many Mid-Acts (MAs) doctrines are supported with an eisogetical understanding of certain Scriptures. With their viewpoint firmly entrenched, they read into Paul’s Acts letters the later truths of Ephesians not actually there.
2Cor.5:17 is a case in point. Here the words “if any man” be IN CHRIST, he, that ONE, is a new creation. Without a thought to the context, many Mid-Acts brethren will unite this passage with Eph.2 which speaks of a new creation where God has made of Jew and Gentile one new man. In their minds, they believe this proves the Mystery was in Paul during Acts. They claim this creation of 2cor.5 is the new creation of Ephesians 2 but the context of Corinthians will not allow
this. Rather than note carefully the context, they are dragging back into Corinthians, truths which are impossible to fit there.
Ephs.2:11-17 says clearly that “in Christ” God has created of the both, (Jew and Gentile) one new man. This is not any man being a new creation in Christ; this
is two groups of believers being created one new group in Christ; the great church which is His Body. Corinthians is about an individual being a new creation in Christ which is not the Ephesians creation. This error of Mid-Acts has resulted from not dividing the things differing.
Now let us examine the context of Corinthians which forbids this Mid-Acts joining of things differing. In the very next chapter 2Cor.6:2, Paul encourages the Corinthians that they receive not the grace of God in vain and this is not the dispensation of the grace of God for he immediately quotes Is.49:8 thus;
We then, as workers together with him, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain. (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.[Is.49:8]) 2Co 6:1-2
Here is Isaiah 49:
Thus saith the LORD, In an acceptable time have I heard thee, and in a day of salvation have I helped thee: and I will preserve thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, to establish the earth, to cause to inherit the desolate heritages; Isa 49:8
Isn’t the Word of Truth amazing? 2Cor.6 is an inheritance on the earth as per the very OT passage Paul uses. This has already been confirmed with 1Cor.15 which we shall see shortly.
Is.49 is the very chapter in which the command to turn to the Gentiles is the one given Paul in Acts 13:
Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles. For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles, that thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ends of the earth (Is.49:6). Act 13:46-47
Paul turned to the Gentiles according to a command of prophesy from Is.49 in Acts 13. Paul did not turn to the Gentiles because any revelation of the new creation of Ephesians 2 had been given him. It is Is.49 in Acts 13 and the encouragement for the Corinthians in 2Cor.6 is from Is.49, no change, nor progression, still none other things than the prophets and Moses did say should come. Despite these contextual restraints, MAs insist the creation of 2Cor.5 is that of Ephesians 2. Nope, not a right division chance of that.
2Cor.6 is the OT. The Gentiles saved in Acts 13 are included according to the same OT prophesies which are about the Israel and the Promised Land, not heavenly places. Is.49:7, 10, 13. Is.42:1, 6 are interesting and should be read here with Acts13:47, 26:23.
How can 2Cor.6 be the mystery of Ephesians? It can’t be. How can the creation of 2Cor.5 be the new creation of Jew and Gentile out of Eph.2? It can’t be, the context will not allow such a Mid-Acts convenience. Also of interest in 2Cor.6 is the fact that Paul uses the OT to establish the relationship between the Corinthians and God the Father
Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living
God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people (Lev.26:12). Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty (Numbs.16). 2Co 6:14-18
Those Acts period Corinthian believers had separated themselves from unrepentant Israel (Acts2:40), and were typified in those who had done the same back in Israel’s picture salvation. Unrepentant Israel was destined to experience God’s wrath which does not mean dispersion in the world and a new dispensation introduced.
God was their father, they were His sons and daughters and all based upon Lev.26:12 and Numbs.16. That is not the church which is His Body in 2Cor.6 and it is not the new creation of Ephesians in 2Cor.5.
These OT passages of Paul are the basis of hope for the Corinthians during Acts;
Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved..... 2Co 7:1
What promises? The promises found in the very OT passages Paul had been using, not the promises given in a dispensation hidden away from previous ages and generations and hid in God.
Now here is another fascinating thing about 2Cor6 and verse 2. In it Paul uses “today” found in Is.49, and this same prophetic appeal is found in Hebrews albeit from another prophet. Notice in this Hebrew appeal Moses is in the house, but the Lord over the same house, which house the Hebrew and Corinthian believers constituted. This is not the church which is his Body since Moses was never a servant in our calling;
And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after; But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end.
Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear his voice, Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness: When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my works forty years. Heb 3:5-9
Here is the Old Testament “today” warning of Hebrews 3:5-9;
For he is our God; and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. To day if ye will hear his voice, Harden not your heart, as in the provocation, and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness: When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my work. Forty years long was I grieved with this generation, and said, It is a people that do err in their heart, and they have not known my ways: Unto whom I sware in my wrath that they should not enter into my rest. Psa 95:7-11
This is a quote from Ps.95 as you can see, which Psalm speaks of the Lord as a great King in whose hands are the deep places of the earth and the strength of the hills. This is Hebrews, hardly heavenly places. Here is the hope given in Hebrews;
For ye are not come unto the mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, nor unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest, And the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words; which voice they that heard intreated that the word should not be spoken to them any more: (For they could not endure that which was commanded, And if so much as a beast touch the mountain, it shall be stoned, or thrust through with a dart: And so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, I exceedingly fear and quake:) But ye are come unto
mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, Heb 12:18-23
In Hebrews the believers had come to Mt Zion, the church of the first born and an innumerable company of angels, where the Trumpet of the OT is featured along with the New Covenant, Hebs.12:18-24. Hebrews knows nothing of the present dispensation of the mystery where Zion, Angels, the New Covenant and the church of the firstborn have no place.
The Hebrews were warned with a look back to Israel’s typical salvation accompanied with the emphasis on “TODAY” and the things held in hope were the fulfillment of Israel’s greater salvation. But these things are also featured in Corinthians.
This "today" warning in Hebrews harmonizes with the today emphasis of Is.49 in 2Cor.6.
In 1Cor.10, Paul warns the Corinthians from the failures in the wilderness, just like Hebrews;
Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; And did all eat the same spiritual meat; And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ. But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness. Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted. Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents. Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer. 1Co 10:1-10
The today warning in Corinthians is for those who were partakers of the earthly calling just as the today warning was for the Hebrews who would partake of that same earthly calling. The Corinthians were also waiting for the Trumpet and the resurrection to the earth. This is proven in 1Cor.15 which resurrection is Is.25 as follows;
And in this mountain shall the LORD of hosts make unto all people a feast of fat things, a feast of wines on the lees, of fat things full of marrow, of wines on the lees well refined. And he will destroy in this mountain the face of the covering cast over all people, and the vail that is spread over all nations. He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for the LORD hath spoken it. And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the LORD; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation. For in this mountain shall the hand of the LORD rest, and Moab shall be trodden down under him, even as straw is trodden down for the dunghill. Isa 25:6-10
Which mountain is it in Isaiah 25? The prophet has already written about it in an earlier chapter;
The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem. And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD'S house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up
to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. O house of Jacob, come ye, and let us walk in the light of the LORD. Isa 2:1-5
The Trumpet resurrection of Is.25 in 1Cor.15 is to Mt Zion. The Hebrews had come to Mount Zion and a Trumpet. Will we yet embrace the falsehood that the creation of 2Cor.5 is some isolated part of the mystery of Ephesians found among such an earthly setting? Impossible, the creation of 2Cor.5 must harmonize with the earthly calling in view.
2Cor.5 is about the new creation of an individual who is looking for that very resurrection to the earth. The ones who had believed into Christ at Corinth, were warned about “today”, and had been warned by a reference back to those who were without faith in the Exodus just as the Hebrews were warned.
Mid-Acts leave Hebrews out of Paul which is a convenient position for them. It would be so inconvenient if MAs included Hebrews in Paul because then they would need to acknowledge the dispensational harmony of Hebrews and Corinthians. Acts 28 recognizes that Hebrews and Corinthians were both written in the Acts period before the revelation of The Mystery of Ephesians.
Here are other dispensational features of the Acts period common to Corinthians and Hebrews.
In Corinthians, Paul declared those believers had been confirmed with supernatural gifts unto the Trumpet coming of the Lord which was near for not all of them would die;
I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ; That in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all utterance, and in all knowledge; Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you: So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. 1Co 1:4-8
But this I say, brethren, the time is short: it remaineth, that both they that have wives be as though they had none; 1Co 7:29
Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world (age) are come. 1Co 10:11
Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 1Co 15:51-52
Here are the same supernatural gifts, the ends of the ages and near return of the Lord as found in Hebrews where we have already seen the Trumpet and the assembling of the believers on Mt Zion;
For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, Heb 6:4-5
For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. Heb 9:26
For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry. Heb 10:37
Can we see these clear and consistent dispensational things in both Hebrews and Corinthians? Notwithstanding the creation of 2Cor.5 is not the one of Ephesians, but suppose we imagined it to be so, could we force it into Hebrews? Absolutely not! Can we force it into Corinthians? Absolutely not!
Paul also refers to a new creature in Galatians 6, another letter written during the Acts period. Could this creature or creation, be that of Ephesians? Mid-Acts certainly think so but does the context allow this? Here is the passage;
But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature. And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God. Gal 6:14-16
This context is equally contrary to the Mid-Acts view that this creation is that of Ephesians 2. Israel, nor the Israel of God have no place in our present dispensation of grace having been put aside at Acts 28. So what is this new creature? Paul had already written about the impotence of circumcision or not back in chapter 5 where faith is the key;
Behold, I, Paul, say to you that if you are circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do all the Law, you who are justified by Law are deprived of all effect from Christ; you fell from grace. For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness out of faith. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any strength, but faith working through love. You were running well. Who hindered you that you do not obey the truth? Gal 5:2-7
Those who returned to seeking righteousness by works had fallen from grace, the grace faith brings. Paul has already expounded the righteousness apart from the law obtained by grace through faith, and faith is the key to this new creature. Faith brought sonship, the blessings of Abraham and an earthly inheritance;
Then He supplying the Spirit to you and working powerful works in you, is it by works of the law, or by hearing of faith? Even as Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him for righteousness. Therefore know that those of faith, these are the sons of Abraham. And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the nations through faith, preached the gospel before to Abraham, saying, "In you shall all nations be blessed." So then those of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham. Gal 3:5-9
Abraham believed God, faith in Abraham was reckoned to him for righteousness and these Jews and Gentiles of the Acts period were the sons (heirs) of Abraham. In this regard Isaac, the heir given Abraham so long ago, typified these Acts period believers, Gals.4:29. The same faith which made them righteous, made them the seed of Abraham;
But before faith came, we were kept under Law, having been shut up to the faith about to be revealed. So that the Law has become a trainer of us until Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But faith coming, we are no longer under a trainer. For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many as were baptized into Christ, you put on Christ. There cannot be Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is no male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed and heirs according to the promise. Gal 3:23-29
Since Paul had already declared these justified Jewish and Gentile believers as the seed of Abraham by faith, it is contextually impossible for the new creature of the last chapter to be the new creation of Ephesians 2. The one new man is
not the seed of Abraham. Galatians knows nothing of the church which is His Body.
While in Galatians it is noteworthy to find the very same dispensational elements already found in Corinthians and Hebrews.
The Galatians were to enjoy the inheritance in the Promised Land, Gals.3:18, 29. They were endowed with supernatural gifts, Gals.3:1-5, 1Cor.1:4-8, Hebs6. The Galatians were anticipating the New Jerusalem referred to as their mother, Hebs.12. In Galatians, the New Jerusalem is inseparable from the prophet Isaiah;
But the Jerusalem from above is free, who is the mother of us all. For it is written, "Rejoice, barren one not bearing; break forth and shout, you not travailing; for more are the children of the desolate than she having the husband." (Is.54: But brothers, we, like Isaac, are children of promise. Gal 4:26-28
If our Apostle in Galatians 4, is inspired to turn to Isaiah 54 it would seem reasonable in our exegesis to do the same;
Rejoice, O unfruitful one that never bore; break out a song and shout, you who never travailed. For more are the sons of the desolate than the sons of the married woman, says Jehovah. Make the place of your tent larger, and let them stretch out the curtains of your dwellings. Do not spare, lengthen your cords and strengthen your stakes; for you shall break out on the right hand and on the left. And your seed shall inherit the nations, and people will inhabit ruined cities. Do not fear; for you shall not be ashamed, nor shall you blush; for you shall not be put to shame; for you shall forget the shame of your youth, and shall not remember the reproach of your widowhood any more. For your Maker is your husband; Jehovah of Hosts is His name; and your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel; the God of the whole earth shall He be called. For Jehovah has called you as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, and a wife of youth, when you were rejected, says your God. Isa 54:1-6
I love the way the Lord is so emphatic at the close of the chapter;
.....This is the inheritance of the servants of Jehovah, and their righteousness is from Me, says Jehovah. Isa 54:17
The prophet speaks of a wife, an inheritance of the nations and ruined cities and righteousness that is FROM Jehovah. This righteousness had already been proclaimed in Is.45:15-15 and chapter 52. This is so consistent with Paul’s Acts period redemptive and dispensational preaching. Paul preached about righteousness by faith through grace but directed every saint to the promises made to the fathers as their hope. Abraham was heir of the world in Roms.4 and the righteousness of the faithful was directly from the Lord. But I digress. In Galatians 4, Paul had linked the New Jerusalem with Isaiah and maybe the word wife is the key. The New Jerusalem is called the Bride, the Lamb’s wife in Rev.21:9 where the Lord makes all things new.
Those who love to rightly divide the Scriptures and compare spiritual with spiritual, will reject out of hand any imaginations that the creature of Gals.6 and the new creation of 2Cor.5 are the one new man of Ephesians 2. The dispensational contexts of Corinthians, Galatians and Hebrews are on the same page; they will not allow such a terrible eisogesis. Written during the Acts period, they know nothing of the present dispensation of the grace of God given by revelation to Paul after Israel was put to one side at Acts 28.
These consistent links in the Acts period letters soundly affirm that the dispensation in view is a continuation of that of Isaiah, Malachi and Matthew and Corinthians and Galatians are not speaking of the creation of Ephesians 2.
Deborah Collins at 5:18 PM

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Thursday, June 26, 2014

Just when Did The Church Age For Today Begin?

Mark Phillips added 3 new photos.
3 mins ·

When did the Church begin?
There are three main views as to when the Church which Christ is head
Began. Probably over 95 percent of believers are confused on this issue, and fail to rightly divide the Scripture to determine what things belong to Israel and what things belong to the Church in our age. That 95 percent fails to see that Acts 2 did not begin the Church today, but was prophecy taking place for the Jewish believers
called the Church of a God in the book of Acts.
The second group of believers try to see the difference in Paul's messages to the Kingdom Church of a God and the Church today. Most of these believers believe the Church today started around Acts 9-13. They believe that through out the book of Acts, Paul moved gradually away from the Gospel for the earthly Kingdom Church of a God and finally preached only to the Gentiles. The following is a general article that outlines their belief as to when the Church for our age began. Unfortunately, they fail to see that all through the entire book of Acts, Paul's hope was entirely in line with the earthly hope of the Jewish kingdom Church. One can read in Acts many times through out Acts, in Paul's very own words, stating how his hope was of his father Abraham. It was not until Paul's last effort to get through to the Jewish leaders to accept their Messiah, that they refused to believe and God cut them off calling them "not my people " in Acts 28:28.
It was not until after Israel was cut off from God for the time being, in Acts 28:28, that God revealed to Paul in Prison about a new Creation, the Church which Jesus is the head. Finally One New Man, where both Gentile and Jewish believers are equal in stature. We finally read about this mystery that was finally revealed to Paul for the first time in history. It was a secret hid in the mind of a God and not revealed in the Old Testament or in prophecy about God's church for our age. Our Church age did not begin until after Acts 28:28.
When Did the Church of the One Body Begin?
We believe the passage in Acts 28:28-31 is when the Apostle Paul declares to the Jewish leadership that the final opportunity for their acceptance of Jesus as Christ is over. From that point on the message for the plan of salvation is now authorized to be sent from the Gentiles, apart from Israel. Prior to this point in scripture, salvation was always either through or with the Jew. At this point the nation of Israel has been put on hold but will be still receive the promises and blessings made to them through Abraham in the future (when Elijah restores the revealed plan of God). However, for the first time in scripture, Paul declares that whosoever will accept Christ, they become a member of the body of Christ where Christ is the head. This is now the beginning of the church which is of His body which has its own calling, blessings, and inheritance separate from Israel. To explain this “hidden plan”, Paul then begins to write the final 7 books in scripture, chronologically (Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, Titus, Philemon, 1 and 2 Timothy.) The reason we describe this calling as the hidden purpose is that it was hidden in God, before the foundation of the world and not revealed until Paul was told to do so in Ephesians 3:9. The primary name given to us by the Apostle Paul for the special body of truth during this timeframe is called “The Mystery” (Ephesians 3:9, Colossians 1:25-26) and it is our calling for today. There are several positions in Christendom on when the Church of the One Body began. Those would be in Acts 2, Acts 9, Acts 13, and Acts 28. We obviously claim it was after the announcement Paul made in Act 28:28.
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  • Mark Phillips

Friday, June 13, 2014

The Mystery To Accept Or Reject

"THE MYSTERY"- God's Sacred Secret To Complete the Word of God (Eph. 3:9; Col. 1:25,26)
"THE MYSTERY"- God's Sacred Secret To Complete the Word of God (Eph. 3:9; Col. 1:25,26)  vs.25 "...I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you to fulfil the word of God; vs. 26..The mystery which hath been hidden from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to His saints:" (Col. 1:25- 26).  Translators in the main have selected the English word, "fulfill" or its equivalent, rather than the English word, "complete" (vs. 25). According to "Webster's New World Dictionary," (1968), the English word, "fulfill," means to carry out something promised, desired, expected, predicted, etc. To say the least, The Mystery was never promised, expected, etc. Consequently, to use the English, "fulfill," is like the blind leading the blind. It is said, "translators follow translators," a form of brainwashing. A case in point: The Douay Version of the Holy Bible, (which is an English translation of the Vulgate used by Roman Catholics) uses the word, "fulfill" (1578). The King James' Version, a Protestant version (1611), also uses "fulfill" -- you be the judge!{C}
In any case, believers are instructed to "make all (saints) see (discern) what (is) the dispensation (stewardship, fellowship) of the mystery which hath been hidden from the ages in God..." (Eph. 3:9). A Christian gentleman, Mr. Moore, who was a Bible teacher from Canada, recently remarked, "the average Christian has not rejected The Dispensation of the Mystery - - he has never even heard of it!" Whether or not one agrees or disagrees with his assessment about rejection concerning the dispensation of the mystery is of small consequence, when compared with his latter comment, "never even heard of it." Regardless, Mr. Moore gave his opinion and personally, I find him not to be far afield. In fact, the gross ignorance of the mystery is very widespread - - it even affects the clergy itself. You are challenged to make your own inquiry and discover for yourself.

An old cliche states, "the more things change, the more things remain the same." Let's put it into our context: as it was in the days of our Lord's flesh, so it is now, - - " making the word of God of none effect through your traditions" (Mark 7:13) Tradition, when spiced with a little slander here and there, is and always has been the weapon of the Evil One (Gen. 3:1-6). Needless to say, he has not changed. In a word, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it."

The best place to start with any difficulty is the source, e.g.., the Apostle Paul's last letter that he penned: "This thou knowest, that all they which are in Asia be turned away from me..." [They turned from Paul's teachings of The Mystery, but not from Christ. Ed.] (II Tim. 1:15) Please bear in mind that the heart of Paul's ministry proceeded through Asia. [The Philippians were not included in this group, as Philipi is in Macedonia. Ed.]

Just as the Colossian epistle states (1:25), this Post-Acts dispensation of the mystery was given, among other things, to complete (not fulfil - - see Webster's Dictionary) the word of God. THINK OF THAT! [There were no more revelations or word of God after "The Mystery" books were completed. Ed.]

Without controversy, the crisis of reality as opposed to historical tradition requires an answer. One either accepts the content of The Mystery written by an inspired apostle of God (II Tim. 3:16) or the findings of the uninspired church council's meeting some centuries later. That is, unless you count the inspiration of Satan himself (II Cor. 11:13-15) as the same as the inspiration of God.

When you consider all the circumstances of Paul's last letter, "...turned away from me" (II Tim. 1:15), you sense a prophetic forecast concerning the outcome of coming attractions, i.e., the church councils to come and the disastrous traditions to follow. [It appears those of whom he wrote had left The Mystery teachings and returned to following the traditional path. Ed.]

"History" - in Brief


From the conversion of Paul unto the close of Acts 28:28, the Jewish-Christian hierarchy in the visible church did not reject Paul, but they consistently resisted what Paul called, "My Gospel" (Acts Chapters 15 and 21, Rom. 16:25, 26; Gal. 1:11, 12; 2:2; etc.) This they did even though he affirmed their dispensational advantage (Rom. 3:1, 2; 9:4, etc.) Even so, at Acts 28:28, Israel, nationally, was placed in abeyance. They became "Lo Ammi," a Hebrew word meaning, "not my people" (Hosea 1:9; 3:4).


Paul arrived in Rome in the Spring of 60 A.D.(?) He wrote his first three letters (Ephesians, Colossians and Philemon ), and sent them under the care of Tychicus [his fellow laborer in the Lord - Ed.], in 61 or 62 A.D.(?). His fourth epistle, Philippians, was written either in 62 or 63 A.D.(?)

According to the best accounts, Paul was then released from prison 63 A.D. - 64 A.D.(?) It was probably from Greece that he wrote I Timothy and Titus, desiring to winter at Nicapolis in 64 A.D.(?). He supposedly was rearrested and sent back to Rome in 65 - 66 A.D.(?) In Rome, he wrote his last letter to Timothy (II Timothy) 66 A.D.(?) He was executed in the Spring, 67 A.D.(?).

In any case, if these time frames are correct, the Mystery, which completes the whole canon of scripture, demonstrates the fallacy of so-called tradition relating to the times the books of the New Testament were written. Shortly after Paul's death, Jerusalem was destroyed - - 69-70 A.D.(?).

From 70 A.D. until after the turn of the First Century, church history is a blank. (Eusebius, "The History of the Church.")

It is here that the first of the Ante-Nicean fathers began to write. The writings of these Ante-Nicean fathers, Eusebius' history, testify to the reality of rejection (II Tim. 1:15) in their silence concerning Paul and The Mystery. Any and all light would be "Petrine (of theApostle Peter) Theology," [which were addressed to "The Circumcision," i.e.,Israel and any Gentile proselytes during the Acts period, and concerned the hope of Israel - Ed.] along with the influence of St. James' Court (Acts 21:20). In fact, the best-seller books of the period (Ante-Nicean fathers unto the beginnings of the early church councils - 300-325 A.D.) should have a title, "How to Become a Successful Martyr." Any mention of Paul is manipulated and homogenized into former teachings; particularly so concerning the New Covenant and water baptism, etc.

Historical traditions and teachings which flow from the findings of the several church councils (300 325 A.D.(?) are:

Clergy rule, priestcraft, rituals, ordinances, with many grave clothes of Judaism retained and practiced today.
Established chronology (false), (particularly the writings of John, 85-100 A.D.)
Established holy days (false).
Plato's "Immortality of the Soul," along with other Greek philosophical thinking. [These false conclusions are the basis of cultic societies (I Tim. 6:16). Ed.]
Pagan superstitions concerning the unseen world, angels, etc.
Eastern and Western churches, the guidelines and authorities.
Self-sacrifice, a way for obedience to gain. Illustration: The practice of things, counted for gain. In the Acts Period, Paul personally lived as a Jew, religious-wise. To him at that time, it was counted as gain. Post-Acts things, prior to the Mystery, were counted as gain, NOW, those things are counted as loss, and as dung (Phil 3:4-8, 13).
"Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ." (Col. 2:8.)

C. E. McLain 10/26/87.