Satan and Dispensationalism #15

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

“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:” (Ephesians 3:1,2 KJV).

Satan knows that Dispensational Bible Study is the key to understanding God’s Word. Thus, he denies it and corrupts it every chance he gets!

Acts is a transitional Bible book. Therein, the most drastic dispensational change in all God’s Word. Where in Acts does God Himself place our dispensational boundary? Is it as 99 percent of Christendom says—Acts chapter 2, Pentecost, the “birthday of the ‘church?’” Certainly not. Our dispensation was given to Paul (today’s Scripture). Saul of Tarsus was still lost in Acts chapter 2. Paul was hellbound until chapter 9!

According to Scripture, our Dispensation of Grace and the Church the Body of Christ began no earlier than Acts chapter 9. But exactly when did they start? The general label “Mid-Acts Dispensationalism” encompasses those who hold to a dispensational change in chapters 9, 13, 15, or 18. The title “Ultradispensationalism” is reserved for an extreme (or late Acts) view, mainly chapter 28 or beyond. Leave it to sinful man and his religious tomfoolery to complicate God’s simple Word! Shame!

The primary truth in the Dispensation of the Grace of God is that national Israel is blinded, fallen before God, and salvation is going to the Gentiles without Israel (Romans 11:11-13). When did salvation go to Gentiles without Israel? When Paul’s apostleship began! Romans 11:11,13: “[11] I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy. [13] For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office.”

Acts 26:17 is Jesus Christ’s words to Paul in Acts chapter 9: “Delivering thee from the people, and from the Gentiles, unto whom now I send [Greek, apostello] thee.” Acts chapter 9 is when Paul was divinely “sent” (“apostle” means “sent one”) to Gentiles. If we just believe the simple testimony of Scripture, and do not have a theological system to promote, we concur with God’s Word, the Dispensation of Grace began in Acts chapter 9.

Satan and Dispensationalism #13

Sunday, October 18, 2015

“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:” (Ephesians 3:1,2 KJV).

Satan knows that Dispensational Bible Study is the key to understanding God’s Word. Thus, he denies it and corrupts it every chance he gets!

There are various “dispensations” in the Word of God, different instructions God gives to a people group in history to believe and obey. The “Dispensation of the Grace of God” is the one that affects us Gentiles today. Paul says in today’s Scripture that the risen, ascended, and glorified Jesus Christ gave him this dispensation so that he could give it to us. That dispensational boundary and change is of critical importance. It involves these last 2,000 years—one-third of human history! It affects the formation and function of the Church the Body of Christ. If Satan can introduce the least amount of uncertainty regarding this dispensation, he confuses the Body of Christ and disrupts two millennia of God’s working in the world.

The most confusion concerning dispensational Bible study is exactly when the Dispensation of Grace began and when our Church the Body of Christ began. Some say Acts chapter 2, others say chapter 9, still others chapter 13, and still others chapter 18, still others chapter 20, or even chapter 28, or even beyond. Confusion! Confusion! Confusion! Some start the Body of Christ in one part of Acts and start the Dispensation of Grace in another part of Acts. We have those who say, “Grace began at the cross but the Body of Christ did not begin until Acts 2.” We have those who say the Body of Christ began in Acts 9 but the Dispensation of Grace did not begin until late Acts or post Acts. We have one group that says the Dispensation of Grace and the Church the Body of Christ both began in late Acts or post Acts. Confusion! Confusion! Confusion!

When did the Dispensation of Grace begin? When did our Church the Body of Christ begin? Unless we have a denominational or “traditional grace” system to promote, we will just agree with the Bible. Let us see what God’s Word says.

Paul and Dispensationalism #17

Monday, August 24, 2015

“For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit” (1 Corinthians 12:13 KJV).

What else can the Apostle Paul teach us about dispensational Bible study?

Baptism has been called “religious TNT.” It has generated many explosive fights across denominational lines! Sprinkling? Pouring? Immersion? Only adults, or babies, too? Where? Who should administer it? What words should be said? What type of water is needed? For salvation or testimony? On, and on, and on… contentious people from all sides fuss and fight, spewing forth contemptuous words! “For ye are yet carnal [fleshly, worldly]: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?” (1 Corinthians 3:3).

Paul could not be clearer. There is one baptism” valid for us in the Dispensation of Grace (Ephesians 4:5). It is not, NOT, NOT, NOT water baptism! The only time Paul mentioned water baptism in his epistles, he wrote, “Christ sent me not to baptize” (1 Corinthians 1:17)! Our one—ONE—baptism is not performed by preacher or priest, but by the Holy Spirit Himself (today’s Scripture; cf. Colossians 2:11,12). The Spirit baptizes us into—NOT water but—the Church the Body of Christ and seals us (Ephesians 1:12-14). Immediately after we rely exclusively on Christ’s death for our sins, His burial, and His resurrection for our justification (1 Corinthians 15:3,4), we are made one with Jesus Christ, “members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones” (Ephesians 5:30). The Holy Spirit comes to indwell us Christians (1 Corinthians 6:19)—He equips us, that the doctrine we read and believe comes to life in our lives (Ephesians 3:16)!

We do not need Israel’s water baptism. We will not experience her fire baptism (seven-year Tribulation and Christ’s Second Coming in wrath). We do not need her “Holy Ghost” baptism in Acts chapter 2, when Jesus baptized with the Holy Spirit (Matthew 3:11; Acts 1:5). No, today, the Holy Spirit does the baptizing, and we are thus “complete in Christ” (Colossians 2:10). The Apostle Paul teaches us that water ceremonies will profit us nothing, NOTHING, NOTHING, NOTHING spiritually!

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Is there a simple way to present the Grace Message to children and teens?

Joel and Dispensationalism

Monday, July 27, 2015

…I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit. And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and terrible day of the LORD come (Joel 2:28-31 KJV).

What can the Prophet Joel teach us about dispensational Bible study?

A half-dozen Old Testament passages combine Jesus Christ’s two comings: these prophets saw one coming. In hindsight, however, we see two prophesied comings. Why were two comings not originally apparent? (There were two secret comings hidden between!)

Today’s Scripture explains Messiah coming twice: first to pour out His Spirit, then to pour out His wrath. These two comings are according to prophecy, “that which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began” (Acts 3:21). The Old Testament prophets did not know that there would be two additional comings of Jesus Christ to divide the two prophesied comings—one coming to start our Dispensation of Grace (save Saul of Tarsus and start the Body of Christ) and one to end it (save the Body of Christ from enduring the seven-year Tribulation). These are the two comings according to mystery, that “which was kept secret since the world began” but was manifested through Paul’s epistles (Romans 16:25,26).

Today’s Scripture (cf. Acts 2:16-21) first predicts Jesus Christ pouring out the Holy Ghost on the Day of Pentecost (First Coming). Then, it delineates how He will pour out His wrath on His enemies (Second Coming). Joel knew nothing of our Dispensation of Grace and the Body of Christ—we are between Joel 2:29 and 2:30. The mystery was “hid in God” (Ephesians 3:9) and completely hidden from Israel’s prophets. God kept a secret from Satan—He would use Calvary’s crosswork to form the Body of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:6-8). The Dispensation of Grace (and its two comings) was also withheld from the Old Testament prophets, including Joel. Wow!

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Why did Jesus say to throw the net on the ‘right’ side?

Knowing Your Apostle Paul

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

“For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office” (Romans 11:13 KJV).

Yea, “…Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time. Whereunto I am ordained a preacher, and an apostle, (I speak the truth in Christ, and lie not;) a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and verity” (1 Timothy 2:5-7).

I once asked a Roman Catholic priest about the “Petrine papacy.” While readily admitting that Jesus Christ sent Paul to us Gentiles (today’s Scripture), he preferred to follow Peter— “I do not care what the Bible says!” He wanted to follow Israel’s Apostle Peter. Never would anyone take “sacred tradition” from him. To abandon the centuries-old fallacy of “Pope Peter” was out of the question!

Christendom’s greatest error is the failure to learn where to go in the Bible to get our “mail” for today. Matthew through John is robbed of the Beatitudes, the so-called “Lord’s Prayer,” and the miracles (the “What-Would-Jesus-Do?” crowd). The Psalms and Proverbs are carelessly isolated. Almost all gravitate to the Book of Acts, especially chapter 2, Pentecost, and the other “Holy Ghost encounters.”

Prophecy said God would bless Gentiles through redeemed Israel (Genesis 12:1-3; Isaiah 60:1-3; Isaiah 61:6; Zechariah 8:20-23). With Israel refusing to convert in early Acts, God could not reach Gentiles. So, with Saul of Tarsus’ (Paul’s) conversion in Acts chapter 9, God instituted a program that He had kept secret since the world began. Salvation would come to us Gentiles through Christ’s shed blood without Israel!

Romans 11:11,12: “[11] I say then, Have they [Israel] stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy. [12] Now if the fall of them be the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness?”

Through Paul’s Gospel—Jesus Christ died for our sins, He was buried, and He was raised again (1 Corinthians 15:3,4)—we have access to God by faith. May we study Romans through Philemon to learn through Paul’s ministry what God expects of us as members of the Church the Body of Christ!

If Thou Be #5

Monday, June 8, 2015

“This thou knowest, that all they which are in Asia be turned away from me; of whom are Phygellus and Hermogenes” (2 Timothy 1:15 KJV).

Today’s Scripture says that long before the modernists, liberals, textual critics, atheists, scientists, and others attacked the Bible, the religionists did it!

Someone once said that Christendom’s “greatest blunder” was the assumption that the Church the Body of Christ started in Acts chapter 2. Friend, to make prophetic into mystery is erroneous. Beloved, to make Israel’s feast day of Pentecost the birthday of the Body of Christ is fallacious. Friend, to see yourself in Acts chapter 2 is dangerous. Unless you begin the Body of Christ with Paul’s salvation in Acts chapter 9, you will never recognize the dispensational boundary that affects your eternity destiny and your earthly life. You will never distinguish between heaven and hell. You will never discern victorious Christian living from futile fleshly living.

Paul claimed to be “the apostle of the Gentiles” (Romans 11:13). The Holy Spirit also moved him to write in Ephesians 3:2 that Jesus Christ gave him “the Dispensation of the Grace of God” so that he could give it to us. If God entrusted to Paul our set of divine instructions to believe and follow, and yet Paul was not saved until Acts chapter 9, is it not silly to go to the Scriptures prior to Acts chapter 9 to find God’s message to us? Why are we so fixated on discovering ourselves in Acts chapter 2, when all the scriptural evidence to contrary is plain English? The answer is Satan’s lie program is still confusing the identity of God’s people. Furthermore, plenty of confused individuals are eager to build denominations and religious organizations, systems that actually enable Satan’s lie program to continue and confuse more souls!

Just before Paul’s death, in Asia Minor (modern-day Turkey), most Christians had already abandoned him, his ministry, and his epistles (today’s Scripture). They forsook God’s grace and returned to the Law of Moses (see 1 Timothy 1:3-11; cf. Acts 20:28-32)! We need not be surprised that the Body of Christ is thoroughly confused today about its identity. It was largely apostate—claiming Israel’s verses as its own—20 centuries ago!

*For more information, you may refer to our two studies: “Did the Church the Body of Christ Begin in Acts 2?” and “When Did the Church the Body of Christ Begin?

Silent Building #8

Monday, December 8, 2014

“And the house, when it was in building, was built of stone made ready before it was brought thither: so that there was neither hammer nor axe nor any tool of iron heard in the house, while it was in building” (1 Kings 6:7 KJV).

God is doing something similar today, very quietly too….

We read in Ephesians 2:19-22: “[19] Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; [20] And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; [21] In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: [22] In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.”

Father God’s will for us is that we grow spiritually. The Lord Jesus wants to not simply indwell us but feel comfortable, feel “at home,” in our inner man. His life will then become our life (for our Christian life really is His life!). Our identity in Christ is only in Paul’s epistles, Romans through Philemon: the Body of Christ is described nowhere else in Scripture. To focus on and apply to life other Scripture is to ignore your identity, overlook what God is doing today, neglect what God gave you, and so on.

Not knowing your identity detrimentally impacts your life. Satan’s assault against members of the Church the Body of Christ is to have them ignore Paul’s epistles. Once they focus on all the other Scriptures and apply them to their lives, they operate apart from the identity God gave them in Christ. Satan’s system causes us to focus on Israel’s prayer promises, Israel’s baptisms, Israel’s tithing, Israel’s miracles, Israel’s earthly kingdom hope, Israel’s material blessings, Israel’s laws, Israel’s feast days, Israel’s apostles, and so on (all found outside Romans through Philemon). No wonder people go around saying we are “spiritual Israel”—claiming Israel’s verses as our own leads to no other conclusion!

The only hope for the Body of Christ’s salvation from false doctrine and doctrinal confusion is to return to Paul’s epistles. Had we not left God’s Word to us, we would not claim God’s Word to others….

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Are lost people already forgiven?