The Mystery

Ephesians 2:11 - 3:10

“The Mystery” is the present era we are living in.  It is a time which was never Prophesied in the OT, nor in the Synoptic Gospels.  It is the subject and the  cause of the Ministry and the Episles of the Apostle Paul.  It is a time when Judah/Israel is loammi --- “Not My People,” temporarily; instead God is ministering to the world through “the One New Man” of Ephesians 2:11-3:1, composed of both Jew and Gentile with no distinction between the two recognized.  And:  

I.    The Importance of the Mystery:

1.    God says it is one of the 3 bases of our establishment for when we appear at the Judgment Seat of Christ.
    (Romans 16:25-26)


2.    It was the subject which Paul’s goal was to make known unto all the universe. (Ephesians 3:9-10)

3.    It is essential to an understanding of the past two millennia of world history,  Soteriology (Salvation), Eschatology
    (Bible Prophecy), and
Ecclesiology (the Church of today), and the Jews, from the Biblical (Divine) perspective.  

Many tragic errors and foolishness are taught today squarely based on ignorance of the Mystery, such as the public disgrace of a church in the south which sought to “demonstrate their faith” by handling venomous snakes in a meeting, thereby “proving  Mark 16:16-18”.  Even worse was the subsequent condemnation of them by other “christians" who had no understanding of what they were talking about, being also themselves ignorant of the Mystery, and thereby undermining faith in the Bible Itself  via the incident.

4.    It is essential to the understanding of the Apostle Paul and his 14 Epistles.

5.    It is essential to the understanding of the non-Pauline Epistles.

6.    It is essential to an understanding of the Rapture.  (“That Blessed Hope” --- Titus 2:11, 1 Cor. 15:51-58, 1 Thess.
       4:14-18
, etc)


7.    It is essential to the understanding of Revelation (!!!).  Which is NOT about the Mystery, whatsoever.

II.    What The Mystery is:

    1.    The word translated “Mystery” is the Grk. musterion, which means “secret.”  It is derived from the verb muo, which
           means “to shut the
mouth.”  English words such as “mute” are derived from it. Mystery is the exact opposite and
           counterpart of “Prophecy,” which we are also
exhorted and required to learn.  Prophecy is what God formerly revealed;
           Mystery is what He formerly kept secret. (Romans 16:25-26)

    2.    There are several different “mysteries” in the New Testament.  This discussion is addressed to the especially central and
            important of these,
“The Mystery.”  The Mystery is the subject of the above Ephesians 2:11-3:10, and referred to by other
            Scriptures we will come to.


    3.    The Mystery is nutshell-defined in Ephesians 3:4-6: --- “That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and
            partakers of his promise
in Christ by the gospel:

            Thus the Mystery is contrary to the situation Prophesied of Israel, in which Israel will be the Special (Holy) People of
            God, Priests and Rulers over
the Gentiles (Nations) in the Kingdom. During the Mystery, as the Prophets foretold, it is a
            time when Israel is not God’s Special (Holy)
People.  But rather, nationally, she is  in blindness imposed by God, and
            while she awaits her Restoration (Matthew 19:28), God has instituted a “New Man,” composed of both saved Jew (only a
            “remnant” of the Jews)
and saved Gentile, with no Divine distinction between the two. (Ephesians 2:11-3:10, Isaiah 6, the
            Book of Hosea, Romans 9-11, etc)


III    The Duration of The Mystery:  (Please see

    http://bwmministries.com/ChristianCommentaries/What_Future_Holds/WorldFuture.html   )

        It becomes clear, with a study of the Mystery, and of Bible Prophecy, that it is a parenthetical period of time interrupting
        the Plan of the Ages found in the
prophets (Daniel 2 and Daniel 9:24 - 27).

    1.    The beginning point of the Mystery --- I have come to believe that, unlike its ending, there is no definite point of
            beginning.  It seems that it “faded
in somewhat gradually,” like when on TV or a movie, one scene fades out while a new
            one fades in over the top of it.  I would save the arguments for
this to the discussions below of “other characteristics of
            the Mystery:”
some of which were announced and came into effect at different points in time of other characteristics.

            However, it must have begun after the blindness to Israel occurred, which certainly must have followed after the Cross,
            because of John 12: 35 - 41.
And further, it had to be after Acts 4, since at that time, God was still offering Israel the
            Restoration, which is impossible after the Mystery had
begun. And it must have come in not later than the writing of
            Romans
since it is there stated that Israel is not going to be restored until “the pleeroma of the Gentiles,” (Romans 11:25)
            which marks the end of the Mystery. {And Prophecy is cleared to proceed, beginning with "a" on my above link}


            So, AISI, the Mystery came fully into effect sometime between Acts 4 and the writing of Romans.  Certainly, with    
            God’s destruction of the Temple in 70
AD, we have His definite decree that “Israel is, in no uncertain terms, ‘lo ammi,’”
            and has been for about 2000 years, now.  They still haven’t
caught on, apparently.  But they will be restored after the
            Mystery is over
(Romans 11:25-26).

    2.    The termination of the Mystery --- For many reasons, the termination of the Mystery must be that event called “Our
            Blessed Hope,” called The
Rapture.  The event itself is given as a Mystery (1 Thessalonians 4:15 and 1 Corinthians 15:51)
            That event is now IMMINENT, which means that
there is no event necessary to precede it, a difference from the
            2nd Advent.  The Rapture could happen in the next minute; but there are at least 7 years of events that must precede the
            2nd Advent
(Matthew 24:31- cf Dan. 9:27), and almost certainly the events outside of those 7 years must occupy yet more
            years.


IV    Other essential characteristics of the Mystery:

    1.     First of all, it is a period when Israel is lo-ammi “Not My People,” says the Lord (Hosea, Isaiah 6, Romans 11, etc).
            Which means that the Prophecies of Israel’s restoration, and the Period of her Divine Worship, and of her special
            Priesthood and Ministry, are set aside.  In their place, today, God is dealing with “One New Man,” composed of both Jew
            and Gentile, for His Ministry to the world (Ephesians 2:11 - 3:1).


    2.     Every Believer (both Jew and Gentile) is indwelt by the Holy Ghost (or, the “Spirit of Christ” --- Romans 8:9).  This is the
            only way it is possible to become a Believer, today. “No man can come unto Me except the Father, which hath sent Me,
            draw him.”


    3.     God has assigned the Apostle Paul as the Steward of the Mystery, just as He assigned Moses as the Steward of the Law
            (Ephesians 3:1-10).


    4.     It is a time when we “walk by faith, and not by sight” (2 Cor. 5:7).  Public evidential SIGNS (Gr. simeon) are not for us.
            They were toys for the “baby Church” in 1 Cor. 13:8, but now that we have “grown up,” the toys have been put away, by
            God, our Father. This was the basic error of the above mentioned southern church; and is far too prevalent an error
            today.  Looking to miraculous signs is LACK OF FAITH; we are directed to trust in, and only in, the Word of God, the
            Bible.  (2 Peter 1:16-21).  There is not a man who has ever had more miraculous signs than Peter had; and he is here
            directing Christians to look away from those, and to the Bible instead.


            Now this does not mean God cannot and does not work miracles today.  He DOES! (Ask me about the Chinese priest
            who visited Hudson Taylor in a restaurant one evening --- it is full of fascinating meaning). But they are not for the
            purpose of Divine evidence; nor are they for public display.  


    5.     It is a time when GOD IS NOT ACTING IN WRATH AGAINST THE SINS OF MAN. (2 Cor. 5:19).  It’s a “cease fire”
            time! There is only one other such era in all human history --- the “Days of Noah.”  Another reason why the Prophecies
            of the Restoration of Israel will not take place during the Mystery, in particular Ezekiel 38-39.  Those involve the Wrath
            of God galore! It is also another reason that miraculous signs are not for this era; if they were, Voltaire would never have
            gotten two steps with his famous “challenge” to God.  


            Now, I know of an event or two that may seem otherwise.  One was the incident when a pro-communist clergyman (we
            have millions of them today, in the pulpits), blaspheming Richard Wurmbrandt, after his tirade, walked out of the room,
            and out of the building, and was rammed against the wall and killed instantly by a car that had gone out of control (or
            presumably so).  There are a few other such well-known incidents.  But these are NOT examples of God’s Wrath, nor of
            Public evidential signs by Him, because  2 Cor. 5:19 tells us so.  After all, is it not “appointed unto man, once to die?”
            And we are going to accuse Him because His timing appears to be a bit beyond the odds, here and there?