rss search

The Mystery

line

The Mystery

 My Old Church Life

We are living in an era bibliophiles call the dispensation of grace. I want to call it the age of the mystery. To simplify it further, I will simply call it today.

Today is all about Gentiles. It is a time filled with the wonderful things God planned before He created heaven and earth (Eph. 1:4). It is a time about which I was ignorant for 37 years of my church life.

Even though I had been reared in a denominational system, I eventually realized I had been taught very little doctrine.  I had been taught:
♦  About my Baptist religion,
♦  Christ died for my sins,
♦ Sin in my life would keep me from having a good relationship with God,
♦ To attend church regularly,
♦ To abstain from doing many things (don’t smoke, don’t chew and don’t go with the girls that do),
♦ To give my tithes, and
♦ To witness to the lost.

All of these things were supposed to make me a better Baptist, a better Christian.

I had not been taught:
♦ how to study,
♦ the unique ministry of Paul,
♦ the mystery,
♦ about the body of Christ,
♦ the difference between the gospel Peter preached and the gospel Paul preached,
♦ that there were different inheritances (heavenly and earthly), and
♦ how to rightly divide the word of truth.

All of these things would ground me in the truth which would make me a better steward of the mysteries of God and of the manifold grace of God (1 Cor. 4:1-2).

I Got Mad

When someone first showed me the unique ministry of Paul, I resisted it.  I was steeped in my Baptist religion and what I was seeing and hearing made me mad.  I thought the person telling me theses strange things was a heretic.  I thought my sister, who had introduced me to this man, had joined a cult.

I was brought up in a Southern Baptist church. I had taught Sunday school for many years. If what this man was saying was the truth, why hadn’t some of my former pastors told me about them? More importantly, why hadn’t I seen them myself?

After several meetings with this man, Brother E.C. Moore, I determined that I would search the Scriptures pertaining to the things about what he taught and would come back at a future date and show him how wrong he was. That didn’t happen.  What happened was I saw that his teaching was correct; which meant that all prior teaching I had received was wrong or grossly inadequate.

 

I Got Out

After several years of discovery concerning the mystery and the apostle Paul, I entered into the ministry.  I had surrendered to preach as a teenager, but God knew when I should honor my commitment, and age thirteen was not that time. God did not allow me to start teaching until I had seen the truth of right division, at the ripe old age of thirty-seven.

I left my home in Alexandria, Louisiana and moved to Baton Rouge. Within a short period of time my two Bible classes had grown to where I felt we should form a church. That was in 1976 and I have not looked back since.

What is the Mystery and why is it so important?

The mystery as revealed unto the apostle Paul is multifaceted and is about those of us living in this present time period I call “Today.” The mystery is not just one thing but a series of events God revealed to Paul over several years.

The mystery is about:
1) the Dispensation of the Grace of God: Eph. 3:1-9; Col. 1:25,
2) the resurrection: 1 Cor. 15:51-55,
3) Israel’s blindness: Rom. 11:25,
4) the preaching of Jesus Christ: Rom. 16:25-26,
5) the mystery of Christ: Col. 4:3; 1 Cor. 15:1-4, and
6) the mystery of God: Col. 2:2, Eph. 1:3.

You will also see the following:
7) the mystery of his will: Eph. 1:9, and
8) the mystery of godliness: 1Tim. 3:16

These last two pertain to how one should live in the Age of the Mystery.

I’ve got a Secret

When I learned what the mystery entailed I began to understand the Bible.  I found that the Bible is basically about two groups of people, Jews and Gentiles. In my searching I discovered the Jews had been promised an earthly inheritance while the Gentiles were assured of a heavenly inheritance.

I soon learned that the things of the law, as it pertains to salvation, had been superseded by grace. I also saw that in this present time period Paul was the apostle to follow and not Peter. I learned about a unique group of people that are called the body of Christ, and I learned when it began. These are all part of the secret or the mystery.

I did not understand

1. I was a Baptist, but what was baptism really for?  Baptism had always been confusing to me.  Why did some believe it was for salvation and others did not?
2. The Book of Revelation scared me half to death. I lived in fear of going through the tribulation until I realized the body of Christ was not subject to it.

When I learned my sins could not separate me from the love of God, I cried with joy. I learned that I had a liberty in Christ because He had made me free, and being made free from sin I could be the servant for the Lord I needed to be.

Before long I was no longer confused, and since confusion had been driven out of my life, my spirit soared. I became happier.  I was more content with my life and the people with whom I shared it. I learned to stop trying so hard to do things for the Lord and started trusting in the Lord.

If you could learn my secret to happiness, would you want to?

Here it is:
1. Quit accepting man’s word for what the Bible says and start trusting God’s Word (Acts 17:11).
2. Study and rightly divide the Bible (2 Timothy 2:15).
3. Learn all you can about Paul.  He is our apostle (Romans 11:13). He is our pattern to follow (1 Timothy 1:16).
4. Learn the difference between the gospel of the circumcision and the gospel of the uncircumcision (Galatians 2:7-9).
5. Know that even though all things in the Bible are for us, not all things are to us because there is a difference between that which Paul preached and that which Peter preached.
6. Know the books of the Bible that are specifically to us (Romans- Philemon).
7. Know the books of the Bible that are not to you, especially Daniel and Revelation.
8. Realize that once you trust Christ as your Savior you are guaranteed a heavenly inheritance with all the blessings that come with it (Ephesians 1:3).
9. Get a Bible that has no contradictions, a King James Bible is best.  Not the New King James or the NIV.
10. Pray a lot.

Long Ago

Before God ever made heaven and earth he made plans for those of us who would be living in this century (Eph. 1:3). This is the mystery of God.

He:
1. Chose Paul from his mother’s womb to be our apostle (Gal. 1:15).

He said:
2. Salvation would be by grace and not of works (Eph. 2:8-9).
3. That sin would not have dominion over us and we would not be under the law but under grace (Rom. 6:14).
4. We would be blessed with all spiritual blessings in heaven (Eph. 1:3)
5. The law would be our schoolmaster until faith (Jesus) came (Gal. 2:24-25).
6. Man would not be justified by works but by the faith of Christ (Gal 2:16).
7. Christ had redeemed us from the curse of the law (Gal.3:13).
8. We had been raised up to sit with Christ (Eph. 2:6).
9. We would be partakers of his promise in Christ by the simple preaching of the gospel (Eph. 3:6).
10. We have redemption through his blood, as well as the forgiveness of sins (Col. 1:14).
11. He had taken away the ordinances of the law that were against us (Col. 2:14-16).
12. We have been delivered from the wrath to come (1 Thes. 1:10); because we are the children of light (1 Thes. 5:4-5).
13. He wanted all men to come to the knowledge of the truth (1 Tim. 2:4).

He also:
14. Told us to set our affections on things above, not on the earth (Col. 3:2).
15. Revealed unto Paul the unsearchable riches of Christ (Eph. 3:8).
16. Gave us pastors and teacher so that we could grow in truth (Eph. 4:11-16).
17. Promised to change our vile bodies to be fashioned like his glorious body (Phil. 3:21).

All of the seventeen things listed above are guaranteed and are only found in the writings of Paul. They are unique to the “Mystery” as revealed unto Paul.

We have a responsibility and that is to share the message of rightly dividing the Word of truth as outlined in the Pauline epistles.  Most staid denominational advocates will shun you and call you names if you speak about the mystery, but do it you must.  You may be the one ray of light someone has been looking for.

Share the secret of the “Mystery” to everyone who will listen.

The mystery is about the Dispensation of the Grace of God. Eph. 3:2-9: “For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles, If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward: How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words, Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ) Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit; That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel: Whereof I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the effectual working of his power. Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ; And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:” See Col. 1:25 also.

Christ dying for our sins was a mystery and the fact that certain Gentiles could be saved was mystery (Eph. 2:11-14). These Gentiles were: 1) without Christ, 2) aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, 3) strangers from the covenants of promise. They also: 4) had no hope of being part of Christ’s body, and 5) were without God.

The mystery is about the resurrection. 1 Cor. 15:51-55: “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. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?”

Before this fact was revealed to Paul there was no Scriptural knowledge of life after death.  Without this secret being revealed, there would be no hope, no eternal life with God.

The mystery is about Israel’s blindness. Rom. 11:25: “For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.”

God knew he would have to do something drastic with Israel, His chosen people.  He did that in Acts 28.  But since He knew this would come about, He made plans for the Body of Christ to carry on in her absence. God chose the Body of Christ before the foundation of the world (Eph. 1:3-4).

The mystery is about the preaching of Jesus Christ. Rom. 16:25-26: “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, But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:”

What is the preaching of Jesus Christ? It is 1 Cor. 15:1-4; which is Christ died for our sins, was buried and was resurrected. Why was that important?  Because the gospel of Peter was baptism  for remission of sins.

The mystery also concerns telling of the mystery of Christ. Col. 4:3:  “Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds:”

The good news that Christ died for our sins must be shared.  There is far too many who preach a false doctrine of hope.  They still teach that baptism is for remission of sins and completely disregard the blood of Christ.  If you do not understand the difference, how can you explain it to others?

The mystery is about the Mystery of God. Col. 2:2: “That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ.”

The mystery of God is everything above. Look at Ephesians 1:3-4: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:”

God chose Israel to spread the news about Him. They failed, but God knew they would and so before He ever called out Abram, He planned to call Paul to reveal the mystery concerning Gentiles.

If you have never heard of this, don’t get mad, praise God that he planned it all.  Study your Bible and you will see the wonderful things God planned for the Body of Christ.

You have just read the truth of the mystery, therefore are no longer in the dark. What will you do about it?   There are many teachers such as myself who are waiting to show you truth.  Find out who and where they are.  Go sit under them.  Support them with your presence and your money.  Most of them teach without ever asking for a penny, but that does not mean they can’t use it.

You may have quit going to church because you have said the following:
1. All they talk about is tithing.
2. Every year they ask us to pledge a certain amount of money.

You will not hear those things from most grace preachers/teachers.  But they have mortgages to pay, food to buy and things that are essential to everyday living. And if you have received a spiritual blessing from their teaching you should honor them with the fruits of your labor.

The Bible says the laborer is worthy of his reward (1Tim. 5:18). Most Bible teachers I know study or teach 16-18 hours a week.  That does not include the time spent in traveling from one location to another, many travel as much as 3-5 hours one way; and often times they do not receive enough money to pay for their gasoline, much less the wear and tear on their vehicles.

One of the barometers I use in determining one’s spiritual growth is one’s appetite for giving to the servants of the Lord. Those who have been blessed the most should give the most, but sadly they do not. Too many people are as negligent about giving as they are about studying their Bible.

 

See a Time Line on the progressions in the Bible http://soundwordsministry.org/timeline/

What are your priorities?