Posted tagged ‘The Mystery’

Unscriptural? or Undispensational?

January 30, 2018

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A friend of this writer has written the following:

There are professing Christians who religiously practice the washing of feet. Are they scriptural or unscriptural? There are some who anoint the sick with oil, while others bless handkerchiefs. Are they scriptural or unscriptural? Some professing Christians claim to have visions and angelic visitations while hearing supernatural voices. Are they scriptural or unscriptural? Thousands of others break forth in some kind of speech which they call the gift of tongues. Are they scriptural or unscriptural to speak in tongues?

To which we add:

Scriptures can be found to substantiate all of these actions. However, it seems to us that it is less than intellectual honesty, much less a spiritual practice, to arbitrarily select certain Bible commands for obedience while completely disregarding others. Why not obey the mandates of Numbers 15:32-36 and Deuteronomy 21:18-21 where infractions were to be punished by publicly stoning the off ender to death? Why not build a tabernacle and offer sacrifices as God commanded in Exodus 25-31? Why not sell that ye have and give alms as Christ instructed in Luke 12:33? In short, why obey only certain Bible commands and ignore others? Why not obey them all?

The answer to these questions is clearly stated in II Timothy 2:15.

Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth.

Though all Scripture is most certainly for our admonition and instruction, all Scripture is not for our obedience today (Compare Genesis 17:10-14 with Galatians 5:2 and Romans 2:25-29. Also Matthew 19:16-21 with Romans 4:5 and Ephesians 2:8, 9). II Timothy 3:16-17 does not contradict or nullify II Timothy 2:15. To the Apostle Paul, the glorified Lord revealed God’s message and program for today. To him was committed the dispensation of the grace of God. (See Ephesians 3:1-9). In his epistles we find the commands given directly to the Body of Christ.

The question, then, is not only, “Is it scriptural?” but, “Is it dispensational?”

Win Johnson (?-1993)
Amazing Grace
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Dispensational Distinctions in Paul’s Epistles

December 28, 2017

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A very clear dispensational distinction exists between the revelations contained in Paul’s earlier epistles, viz., Romans, Corinthians, Galatians and Thessalonians, and his later epistles, viz., Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, Timothy and Titus. To illustrate the striking difference between the teaching of the earlier and the later epistles, it has been calculated that the word “Jew” is mentioned 25 times in the earlier epistles, and only once in the later. Israel is mentioned 14 times in the earlier and twice in the later, while the word “Israelite” is mentioned 3 times, Abraham 19 times and tongues 22 times in the earlier epistles, and none of them is even mentioned in the later.

Moreover, during the earlier period, the apostles, Paul included, did much in the way of healing, but during the later period Paul had to leave Trophimus at Miletum, sick. If Pentecostal powers were still at his disposal, why need he have had this infirmity?

These facts are readily explained when we remember that the earlier epistles were contemporary with the events related in the Book of Acts, while the Jews still had the opportunity to repent of their sin in the rejection and crucifixion of their King, and that of accepting the teaching of the apostles, Paul included, founded on the offer of pardon conveyed to them through Peter in Acts 3:19-21. This offer was open to them for over thirty years, and it did not come to a conclusion until Paul in Acts 28:25-28 pronounced the final rejection of the nation by God, because they had persistently rejected these gracious offers of pardon.

H.W. Fry
Things to Come, April, 1910
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Recognizing Distinctions in Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth

December 26, 2017

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In order to rightly divide the Word of God, we must recognize that there is a great distinction between the promises of the Old Testament, including the Gospels, as compared with the revelations of God’s abundant Grace in Christ as revealed to and through the Apostle Paul, and contained in His Epistles.

H.W. Fry
Things to Come (1910)
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The Baby Jesus and the Lord of Glory

December 25, 2017

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Each year at Christmas-time, the “baby Jesus” is the subject of discussion and attention. Indeed, all year long the Babe in its mother’s arms and the dying Sufferer on the cross are kept constantly before the masses, while our Lord’s resurrection, ascension and present glory in heaven are given but scant attention. This is because so few have taken note of the great message of the Apostle Paul about the glorified Lord in heaven. In II Corinthians 5:16, the Apostle wrote:

… yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we Him no more.

It is sad that so many still know only “Christ after the flesh.” They love to discuss the “gospel stories” about the “Man of Galilee,” but find themselves strangers in the great Epistles of Paul.

Paul is the apostle for this present “dispensation of the grace of God.” It is he who presents Christ in His present glory as the great Dispenser of redeeming grace, through the merits He won at Calvary. In Ephesians 1:15-23 we have recorded for us the Apostle’s prayer that we might be given “the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Christ” that we might come to experience…

What is the exceeding greatness of [God’s] power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of His mighty power, which He wrought in Christ when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him at His own right hand in the heavenly places. Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world [age], but also in that which is to come (:19-21).

Let us thank God that the baby Jesus grew up and died for our sins and became the risen, living Savior at God’s right hand.

Cornelius R. Stam (1909-2003)
Two Minutes with the Bible
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Living Outside of Prophecy

August 19, 2017

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We live under the Secret Administration (“the Administration of the Secret” Ephesians 3:9), completely outside of the subject of prophecy.

Sadly, some believers become obsessed with their interest in Israel’s prophetic program, rather than the advanced revelation committed to Paul for Christ’s Body today. They focus on John’s prophetic revelation of “Jesus Christ,” rather than Paul’s secret revelation of “Christ Jesus.”

Few know and appreciate the grand distinction between the earthly “Jesus Christ” and the heavenly “Christ Jesus.”

My evangel, and the heralding of Christ Jesus in accord with the revelation of a secret hushed in times eonian (Romans 16:25, CV).

Rather than “Christ Jesus,” John’s prior revelation was in regards to “Jesus Christ”:

The Unveiling of Jesus Christ (Revelation 1:1).

Those unaware or confused concerning Paul’s unique message in his Perfection Epistles ignorantly focus on signs and dates, rather than the Savior Himself and His glorious celestial appearing.

When God revealed this Secret Administration, the hands of Israel’s prophetic clock stopped. The nation of Israel and her prophecies entered complete abeyance.

We currently live outside of Israel’s prophetic times. The last prophecy fulfilled was that of Isaiah 6:9-10 nearly 2000 years ago as recorded in Acts 28:25-28.

With Israel’s prophetic clock still motionless, Christ will reveal Himself among the celestials. We will join Him there in His appearance as co-regents, the new aristocracy of heaven. This manifestation has no prophetic signs or indicators pointing to its arrival. We live completely outside of prophecy, with our “hope” (confident expectation) being “pre-expectant” (Ephesians 1:12), “before the disruption of the world” (:4). There are no timetables for this unprophesied event whatsoever.

Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.
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An Absolute Secret

July 27, 2017

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Unless we realize the fact that the burden of Ephesians was an absolute secret, this precious quality will not endear it to us, and we will fail to appreciate its message and the underlying love which it reveals. Its greatest charm will be lost to us if we find it foreshadowed in Genesis, or foretold in the Hebrew prophets, or revealed in the “gospels,” or the Acts of the Apostles, or if we even confuse it with Paul’s previous revelations in his earlier epistles. It was hid from the eons in God (Ephesians 3:9) and was made known only by Paul, during his Roman imprisonment (Ephesians 3:8).

A.E. Knoch (1874-1965)
Unsearchable Riches, Volume 18 (1927)
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None Know Enough

June 25, 2017

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None of us know enough to be dogmatic. All that we wisest can say is, “At the present time, such and such appears to be true”; if we be wise, we add, “But fuller knowledge may make a change of opinion necessary.”

Miles Hanson
Post Office Mission #4 (1925)
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