Archive for December 2018

The Above-Heavenly Sphere of Blessings

December 4, 2018

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Paul, in prison, wrote his last epistles, making known the subject of the special revelations he had received about the above-heavenly (epouraniois) sphere of blessings, and announcing a complete change of dispensation brought about by the temporary setting aside of Israel: no longer a chosen people, no longer any sign of the nearness of the Kingdom, no more fulfillment of the prophecies.

— S. Van Mierlo
The Development of Christendom
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The Sign Gifts

December 2, 2018

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Ever since the Apostle Paul informed the Corinthians that the sign gifts were to pass away(I Corinthians 13:8), attempts have been made by sincere people to revive them. All such efforts of courage have ended in failure and disrepute for the church at large.

Though it is true that these gifts were at one time a part of God’s program for the sign nation (1:22), they ended when God finally set His favored people aside (Acts 28:28). One will look in vain for any mention of the “sign” gifts in the epistles of Paul written after the “Acts” period.

It is sometimes suggested that if believers today were as spiritual as they should be, gifts would abound. This, we submit, is not so. Of all of the churches to whom the apostle wrote, the Corinthians were the most un-spiritual. They were contentious (I Corinthians 1:11); they permitted fornication in their midst (5:1); brother went to law against a brother (6:1-8); and they were disorderly at the Lord’s Table (11:17-22).

Small wonder that he writes to them,

And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ (I Corinthians 3:1).

Yet, in spite of all of this carnality, they had the sign gifts in abundance (chapters 12, 14). Surely it was not because they were spiritual.

Win Johnson
Amazing Grace
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