First the Question: Are you ashamed, as a result of your membership in a denomination, of the Apostle Paul, his Grace testimony, or of the Mystery of the Gospel, God’s ETERNAL PURPOSE IN CHRIST? Yes or No? Please answer with care.
Take a moment to respond at the LLM Question of the Day
And now the answer to the LLM Question of 2-21-2012
Question: There is in the Bible, the Gospel, or Good News, for the unsaved, AND, the Gospel for the saved. True or False?
Answer: TRUE! Confused? Don't be! And, what IS the truth for saints in the Bible that transcends all other truth, grand and glorious? It is “The Mystery.” Take note, this is quite different from 1 Corinthians 15:1-4, as wonderful as is the good news that Christ died for our sins, was buried and was raised the third day. All of that good news, we are told in those verses, was “according to the Scriptures.” BUT, “the Mystery of the Gospel,” “the Mystery of God’s will,” was NOT “according to the Scriptures” (Old Testament prophecy), but “according to the ETERNAL purpose of God,” HID in God from BEFORE the foundation of the world. Ephesians 3: 9-11. And being that it was hid in God, Israel’s prophets said nothing and knew nothing about it. Now, out of the 732 responses we received to this question, ONLY 68.8% of you got it right! We have work to do on this. Therefore, NOW, let us take a look at,
WHAT IS THE MYSTERY OF THE GOSPEL, part 1 of 3
Christians have erred exceedingly in trying to force and limit the meaning of the word “gospel” to fit into their theological thinking or some sectarian, or denominational church creed and program.
Every intelligent, spiritual student of the Scriptures knows the difference between “the Gospel of the Kingdom” and “the Gospel of the Grace of God.” Compare Matthew 4:23 and Acts 20:24. So should every such student of the Scriptures know the difference between the saving gospel for sinners in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 and the gospel for saints.
There is in the Bible, the Gospel, “good news”, for the unsaved, and the Gospel,“good news”, for the saved. Confused? Don't be! And, what is the truth for saints in the Bible that transcends all other truth, grand and glorious? It is “The Mystery.” Take note, this is quite different from 1 Corinthians 15:1-4, as wonderful as is the good news that Christ died for our sins, was buried and was raised the third day. All of that good news, we are told in those verses, was “according to the Scriptures.” BUT, “the Mystery of the Gospel,” “the Mystery of God’s will,” was NOT “according to the Scriptures” (Old Testament prophecy), but “according to the eternal purpose of God,” HID in God from before the foundation of the world. Ephesians 3:9-11. And being that it was hid in God, Israel’s prophets said nothing and knew nothing about it.
When Christ died at the hands of Israel and made His grave with the rich and was buried and was raised again, all was in fulfillment of the writings of Israel’s prophets. Acts 13:29-30. But what about the present place and ministry of Christ and His relationship to Gentiles and Jews saved by Grace, during this present economy, the Dispensation of Grace? What prophet foretold that during at least twenty centuries Christ would remain in heaven, while the Messianic earthly kingdom of Christ would be in abeyance, that He would be the unseen Head of the Church, Which is His Body, the filling-up of Christ? Who foretold that Christ would be seated far above all heavens and that believing Gentiles, without subjection to the kingdom nation, could be crucified, dead, buried, raised, risen and seated with Christ, in the heavenlies, and in Him and with Him blessed with all spiritual blessings in the heavenlies, while waiting for Him to appear in glory when they shall appear with Him, because they were chosen in Christ before the world began? Who foretold it? No ONE! It was hid in God.
Apart from the violent and intense hatred of Satan for this grand and glorious truth, it is next to impossible to believe that any truly saved person would oppose and fight it. But, OH, how some Christians, including some of our leading Fundamentalists, do hate it! One reason is, that the Mystery is the death blow to all denominations and all sectarian, religious ceremonies, as it is the golden key to unlock the Scriptures and God’s curative for all the ills and isms with which the Body of Christ is afflicted, “that ye no longer be children tossed to and fro with every wind of doctrine.” Think of a Bible teacher, who claims to be a steward of the Mysteries of God (1 Corinthians 4:1-4), knowing not the first thing about the Body, as the fullness of Christ (Ephesians 1:19-23), “the one new man” (Ephesians 2:15), “the one flesh” (Ephesians 5:31-32), “the perfect man!” Ephesians 4:13.
ACCORDING TO GOD’S ETERNAL PURPOSE
There are different aspects and phases of “the Mystery,” “the Mystery of God’s Will,” “the Dispensation of the Mystery,” which has to do with principalities and powers in the heavenlies, the inseparable and eternal union of believers with Christ, the riches of God’s grace, the riches of God’s glory, the whole family in heaven and earth, God’s inheritance in the saints and His calling. But the Mystery might be defined as “God’s eternal purpose in Christ.”
In Ephesians 3:10 we learn one reason why God wants all saints to see what is the Mystery, that is, that by the Church the manifold wisdom of God might be made known to principalities and powers in the heavenlies, ACCORDING TO GOD’S ETERNAL PURPOSE IN CHRIST. This wisdom was ordained to the glory of members of the Body of Christ before the world began. 1 Corinthians 2:6-8. This wisdom, which was spoken to the perfect, in a Mystery, was too much for the carnal, sectarian Corinthians, who could not take the strong meat that was for the perfect (full-aged) (1 Corinthians 3:1-4, Hebrews 5:9-12). It seems to be too much for sectarian, denominational, Christians today. They seem to be unwilling to come out from under that ecclesiastical rubbish where the precious gem has been buried, lost, for so many centuries.
Members of the Body of Christ in 2012 should be instructed in the words of the Apostle Paul, recorded in 2 Timothy 1:8-11, “Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God; Who hath saved us, and called us with a HOLY calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and Grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began; But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel: Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.”
“Whereunto,” or “whereby,” is used by Paul several times in this same connection, his Apostleship to the Gentiles with THE ETERNAL PURPOSE OF GOD, for which He was the prisoner of the Lord Jesus Christ. As we have stated before in many messages on LLM, the mystery was revealed to the Apostle Paul ALONE, to pass on to others. It was NOT in Israel’s Scriptures. It was NOT revealed to the twelve Apostles. The Apostle Peter never preached it, so far as the Record goes. Paul got into serious trouble, because he claimed that he had received this special truth by special revelation, not made known to others. He could not prove it by the Scriptures, because it had been hid in God.
Now, as many were ashamed of the Apostle Paul in 64 A.D., so also, many Christians are ashamed today of the Lord’s servants who preach Grace plus nothing, for salvation, and who endeavor to obey Ephesians 3:9 and Ephesians 4:1-7, especially when they get to that one Body and one baptism. But Paul testified that this Grace and purpose of God was given believers in Christ before the world began. In 2 Timothy 1:9 and in Ephesians 2:7 the Apostle shows us the eternity of Grace; what God did, in Grace, before the ages began and what He is going to do, in grace, in the ages to come.
So the question: Are you ashamed of the Apostle Paul or his Grace testimony or of God’s ETERNAL PURPOSE IN CHRIST?
This eternal purpose is always linked with PREDESTINATION. Let’s read Ephesians 1:9-11, “Having made known unto us the Mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself: In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will.”
Now let’s read Romans 8:28-30, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover, whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.”
Now let’s read Ephesians 1:4-5, “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: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.”
Do you see why religious people in the year 64 A.D. were ashamed of this Mystery, AND, why the religious people of 2012 A.D. are ashamed of this Mystery? How many of even the leading spiritual Fundamentalists are praying for an open mouth and for open doors for the proclamation of the Mystery? Ephesians 6:19-20. Colossians 4:3-4. Most of them are helping to CLOSE every door in the country against this truth that is grand and glorious and they have succeeded in closing most mouths. So the few servants of the LORD, who are earnestly endeavoring to make known this wonderful truth, are being attacked from both sides.
In Ephesians 1:13 the Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul declares that men are saved and sealed by hearing and BELIEVING the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation. Therefore, here, now, is declared unto you the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation: "that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures" 1 Corinthians 15:3-4. BELIEVE today. The time is short.
So There You Have it!
Spread this message to everyone you know, far and wide.
Grace be to you and peace, from God: our Father, and The LORD Jesus Christ.
In The LORD Jesus Christ,
The Lion and Lamb Ministry
Pastor David Picos, D.D.
Minister and Ambassador for Christ in the Ministry of Reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:18-20)