Bible Study 101 #9

Monday, January 13, 2014

“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15 KJV).

The only verse that tells you to study the Bible also tells you how to study the Bible!

Many vehemently oppose dispensational Bible study. “Paul is just a man. I go by what Jesus said.” “So, you believe Paul’s epistles alone are inspired of God?” “Dispensational Bible study was invented in the 1800s.” “You only study Paul’s epistles.” How should we answer these objections?

Firstly, the Holy Spirit said Paul’s writings are “the commandments of the Lord.” God the Holy Spirit believed that Paul’s Bible books were “the commandments of the Lord” (1 Corinthians 14:37)—Paul’s words are Jesus’ words! Paul’s writings are not inferior to Jesus’ words in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Jesus Himself said, during His earthly ministry, He was not speaking to us Gentiles anyway (Matthew 10:5-7; Matthew 15:24; Romans 15:8). Paul is our apostle (Romans 11:13); Jesus is Israel’s Apostle (Hebrews 3:1).

Secondly, Paul himself wrote, All scripture is given by inspiration of God” (2 Timothy 3:16,17). We agree with the Holy Spirit here too—every Bible book, not just Paul’s epistles, came from God’s mouth, so we study all of the Bible.

Thirdly, Paul mentioned the term “dispensation” four times (1 Corinthians 9:17; Ephesians 1:10; Ephesians 3:2; Colossians 1:25). Dispensational Bible study existed with the Apostle Paul 2,000 years ago. Actually, it was necessary even in Moses’ day (Genesis 9:1-4 and Leviticus chapter 11 could not be followed simultaneously; these two dispensations had to be “rightly divided”). God Himself invented dispensational Bible study.

Following God’s Word to Israel (the non-Pauline books) is not faith—it is doubting what the Holy Spirit through Paul wrote to us. The “words in red” are not the only words of Jesus, for after His ascension, Jesus Christ also spoke to the Apostle Paul (Acts 26:16-18; 2 Corinthians 12:1; Galatians 1:11,12). The same Lord Jesus Christ who spoke to Israel on earth (Four Gospels) also spoke to Paul from heaven to speak to us. Sadly, many ignore what God is doing and saying today and follow what He did and said in the past….