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Prophecy for Earth and Israel, Mystery for the Heavenly Body of Christ

Dr. Mike Johnston

“That in the dispensation [1] of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him” (Ephesians 1:10).

Understanding the distinction between prophecy for Israel and earth and mystery for the Body and Heaven helps clarify the reason the latter will not go through Israel’s tribulation. However, one must keep in mind all Scripture is inspired and is profitable for us, but not personally to us.[2]

We mentioned previously that prophecy and mystery comprise God’s two overarching programs “since the world began” (Acts 3:21; Rom. 16:25). If you misunderstand these programs, you will skew Scripture from Genesis to Revelation – which is a common malady all over the world.

God’s two Plans since the World Began

According to the prophets which God always reveals the future to (Amos 3:7), God’s prophetic plan for Israel concerns the earthly Kingdom Christ offered and was rejected for. From that point, the earthly focus is Christ returning to earth in a spectacular event called the Revelation – to inaugurate His Kingdom in Jerusalem (Matt. 24-25; Rev. 19-20. As stated, this plan was “spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began” (Acts 3:21; see Luke 1:70); was presented by the Messiah to Israel alone (Matt. 4:17; 10:6; 15:24; Rom. 15:8); and was expounded upon by Christ during His forty month earthly ministry (Matthew – John).

God’s plan for the Body of Christ, however, is completely different. It is not mentioned in prophecy and has no earthly future to be thus calibrated such as we find in Israel. We are a mystery concerned with our heavenly inheritance, not an earthly kingdom. Jesus revealed this program to Paul during His post ascension heavenly ministry as a mystery “kept secret since the world began” (Rom. 16:25; see Eph. 3:3-9). In that it began as a mystery, it will likewise disappear in a mystery called the Rapture; an any moment event whereby Jesus returns for us in the air (1 Thess. 4:16-17), snatches   us from earth, and takes us back to Heaven with Him as He promised (John 14:2-3).

Impartial exegesis reveals the program, the time period and the gospel message God set in motion from the beginning to oversee His eternal pleasure for heaven and earth once contaminated by Satan’s influence. This He accomplishes through dual means: prophecy and mystery. (See Chart: Prophecy Mystery Compared [i])

They begin to unfold with the very first words in the Bible: “In the beginning God created the HEAVEN and the EARTH” (Gen. 1:1). It does not say God created the UNIVERSE; it does not say God created the heavens and the earth as many people make the mistake of saying. It says God created the HEAVEN and the EARTH. This is because He has a special purpose concerning the earth which is completely different from His purpose concerning heaven. This HEAVEN or EARTH theme is traceable from Genesis through Revelation and until you embrace and employ this as a hermeneutic, Scripture will at best be enigmatic.

Most Bible teachers never realize how the improper division between Testaments has expedited most of the muddle introduced by prophecy teachers claiming a disingenuous epiphany disproving the historic PreTrib rapture position (see Appendices). This they do shamelessly misrepresenting the context of Matthew 24:29, which their propaganda depends for its wearisome existence.

In context, Matthews’s gospel tells us Christ came to “the lost sheep of the house of Israel” (Matt. 15:24) to inaugurate the Davidic Kingdom (2 Sam. 7:16; Matt. 4:17). His rejection postponed those plans precisely at the conclusion of Daniel’s sixty-ninth week (Dan. 9:24-27).

The Olivet Discourse described in Matthew 24-25; Mark 13, and Luke 21 was delivered to Peter, James, John, and Andrew for Israel after a request for signs leading to Christ’s return to establish the Davidic Kingdom (Mark 13:3-4) given them by covenant.

Bear in mind, this Olivet Discourse occurred before the death of the Testator and is therefore Old Covenant narrative (Heb. 9:16-17). [3]

The Prophecy Program
Spoken … since the world began”
(Luke 1:70; Acts 3:21)

“As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began” (Luke 1:70)

“Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began” (Acts 3:21)

The Prophecy Program concerns God’s purpose for the earth and Christ’s kingdom [4] in Israel. [5] Prophecy [6] – however – is more than history written in advance. It is Israel’s future “spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began (Acts 3:21). Israel is an elect nation that exists from prophecy given by inspired messengers of God called prophets (Heb. 1:1; 2 Pet. 1:21). The goal of prophecy is the glorious appearance (Revelation [7]) of the Messiah on earth[8] to establish Israel’s kingdom under a King from the lineage of David in the city of Jerusalem (Isa. 24:23; Mic. 4:7) in fulfillment of the Davidic Covenant (1 Sam. 7:16) following the tribulation (Zeph. 1-2; Matt. 24:21, 29; Rev. 6-19) also called “time of (Jacob’s) trouble” (Jer. 30:7; Dan. 9:24-27). Keep in mind this kingdom has been in the works for thousands of years as the Lord Jesus revealed at the sheep and goat judgment: “Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (Matthew 25:34).

The prophecy program applies to Israel, the preeminent nation

It was revealed in prophecy for Israel leading to a coming King and an earthly kingdom that was progressively unfolded to her “by the mouth of the prophets since the world began” (Luke 1:70; Acts 3:21).

  • Presented as a nation where Christ is Messiah [has laws, land, covenants, etc]
  • Exists from prophecy given by the prophets (Gen-John)
  • Promises an earthly Millennial [9] Kingdom and a coming King from Davidic Royalty (2 Sam. 7:16; Matt. 3:2; 4:17; 6:10; 24:14; etc).
  • Preceded by a time of great tribulation to purify and prepare Israel and the world (Deut. 4:30; Isa. 2; 24; Jer. 30-31; Joel; Zeph. 1:15; Zech. 13:9; [10] 24:29; 25:31-46; Rev. 6-20).
  • Israel’s prophets call this the tribulation (Deut. 4:30; see Matt. 24:21, 29) and “Jacob’s trouble” (Jer. 30:7) revealing it will occur at Daniel’s Seventieth week (Dan. 9:24-27).
  • The OT prophets guide Israel and the twelve are their apostolic representatives (Matt. 10:5-6) [11] and future judges (Matt. 19:28). [12]

Prophecy leads to Israel’s Messiah King and His Millennial Kingdom

“Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7). Prophecy focuses on Israel’s kingdom and king. However, you’ll never understand this if you fail to grasp the distinctions between the two programs: Prophecy and Mystery. I’m thankful to have discovered this early on in my Christian life. About the time I enrolled in Bible College, I had already purchased my first Scofield Study Bible.[13] The Scofield is in my opinion and untold numbers of Bible scholars and students – the best study investment I’ve ever made. The notes are like a seminary education, that reinforced and taught me Bible doctrine, Bible history, and about the seven dispensations which marked a clear distinction between Israel and the church.

As you may already know, understanding and applying dispensationalism[14]  is the key to rightly dividing the word of truth (2 Tim. 2:15) and thereby ending the confusion surrounding the rapture-revelation, church-Israel debate.

Israel is the chosen nation and the subject of more prophecy than any other nation in the world. She emerged- and exists- from prophecy centering around the coming of an eternal King to set up an earthly Kingdom. While Christians see this as the Second Coming, the Jews look for a first. By and large, dispensationalists agree with CI Scofield’s observation that “whoever reads the Bible with any attention cannot fail to perceive that more than half of its contents relate to one nation-the Israelites . . . their history alone is told in Old Testament narrative and prophecy-other nations being mentioned only as they touch the Jew.” [15]

Distorted by Dominionism

The Prophecy Program is for God’s elect Israel, and concerns His overarching plan for a coming earthly Kingdom preceded by a time of great tribulation. God will ultimately use this program for cleansing and redeeming earth in preparation of the coming Millennial kingdom in Jerusalem, Israel. Of course this is viciously opposed by Satan who has his own distorted campaign involving humanistic Dominionist plot forged under the writings of Alexandrian heretick Origen.[16]

Origen’s system of interpretation was arbitrary and allegorical. [17] “He often denied the ordinary sense of the text, and replaced it with allegories which he made up. These allegories then became the real meaning of the text. There was no way to challenge the allegories on the basis of the text, since what the text actually said was no longer what it meant. It was, therefore, no longer necessary that the allegory actually come from the text, because it was the allegory that was authoritative. The theology which the allegory illustrated was imposed upon the text. In this allegorical system, when the text said, “Israel,” it meant “the Church” and not the Jews, so long as the promise or comment in the text was good. If the promise or comment in the text was not good, then “Israel” still meant “the Jews,” and not “the Church.” His theology determined how the text was to be understood, rather than the text determining what should be understood and believed” (above was copied and pasted from Elijah.net with slight edits).

Subsequently, Augustine the Romanist and student of Origen adopted the allegorical method to his writings which ultimately influenced Constantine – the first Roman Emperor sympathetic to Christianity – to see the cross as a symbol by which to conquer the world for Rome.

The Mystery Program
“Kept secret since the world began
(Romans 16:25)

“Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation [18] of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began” (Romans 16:25).

“How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words” (Ephesians 3:3).

“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” (Ephesians 3:9). See also these verses in Annotations [19].

The Mystery Program is subordinate and temporary

The prophecy program existed first. Had Israel accepted her Messiah, the mystery would not have been necessary. However, that COULD NOT happen since the word is forever settled in heaven (Psa. 119:89). In the overwhelming body of text – eighty percent for Israel remember – the prophets predicted a future where King Jesus will rule His Kingdom from Jerusalem, Israel. That’s the plan and the Body of Christ is a temporary “fill in” on earth during Israel’s blindness, awaiting our removal when “the fulness of the Gentiles be come in” (Rom. 11:25). This factor alone will allow Daniel’s prophecy clock which paused at His rejection by Israel (Dan. 9:24-27) to begin ticking again.

When studied in its entirety we discover the Mystery is that body of truth revealed to and proclaimed by the Apostle Paul  alone (Rom. 16:25; Eph. 1:9-10; 3:1-11) concerning Heaven and the exaltation of the Body of Christ together in Heaven with Christ (Eph. 2:4-10, 3: 1-4; also read carefully Col. 3:1-6).[20] The student who understands the distinction between prophecy for Israel and earth, along with the mystery of the Body and heaven, is thoroughly equipped to avoid conflating Israel’s expectation of a coming Revelation of a King and kingdom – with His parenthetical plan for the Body. In the end, the Body which began as a mystery will disappear in a mystery (1 Cor 15:51) called the Rapture. It must be so in order to make way for the nation preeminent upon earth, God’s elect Israel.

Christians and Israel – blind to the mystery

If Bible students will mark the difference between prophecy for Israel and the mystery of the church, the confusion surrounding the time of Jacob’s trouble quickly dissolves. Sadly, last days’ teachers are often so emotionally invested in anti-PreTrib vitriol [21], they’re afraid to risk acknowledging anything even hinting they’re wrong. [22]

Israel is as blind to the mystery (Rom. 11:7, 25) as are some Christians who fight tooth and nail against Pauline doctrine (2 Pet. 3:15-16). The dispensation of the mystery of the church [23] isn’t Jewish and it wasn’t known by any of the prophets or the twelve apostles until Paul taught them (2 Pet. 3:15-16; see also 1 Thess. 2:13). It was secretly revealed by the Lord Jesus to Paul – the Apostle to the Gentiles (Rom. 11:3) – literally as a mystery (Rom. 16:25; Eph. 3:4-5, 9) – after the Lord temporarily set aside Daniel’s prophecy at the end of the 69th week (Dan. 9:24-27).

Dispensationalists teach the church is not Israel; is not the subject of OT prophecy, and therefore is not implicated in the Day of the Lordtribulation (time of Jacob’s trouble). Moreover, we are not mentioned from Revelation 6-19 describing the tribulation – which originated in the prophecy program for Israel – and we are not the prime and prophetic beneficiary of the Millennial Kingdom of heaven on earth. We must be taken out of the way (2 Thess. 2:7) so that Israel becomes prominent in God’s prophetic plan once again. This, we believe, will happen after the church, which appeared through a mystery revealed to Paul, likewise disappears through another mystery revealed to Paul: the mystery of the rapture (1 Cor. 15:51-58; 1 Thess. 4:13-18) – when “the fulness of the Gentiles be come in” (Rom. 11:25).

The blood bought, born again church (ekklesia- called out assembly) is the Body of Christ (Col. 1:18, 24). She has NO inheritance on earth and no compelling purpose here during the tribulation (study Eph. 1-3; Col. 3:1-6). She is the Lord’s heavenly BODY (Eph. 1:3; 2:6); a mystery “kept secret since the world began” (Rom. 16:25), given to Paul alone by our risen Lord Jesus Christ (Eph. 1:20) during His current heavenly ministry in a personal post ascension revelation (Rom. 16:25; Gal. 1:12; Eph. 3:1-9). Once “the fulness of the Gentiles be come in” (Rom. 11:25) and the mystery Body of Christ (Rom. 16:25) is removed at the Rapture (1 Cor. 15:51), Israel’s prophecy clock will resume at Daniel’s seventieth week (one week of seven years – see Dan. 9:27; Rev. 11:2-3), the time of Jacob’s trouble that Jesus referred to as (great) tribulation (Matt. 24:21, 29).

God never advanced His program for Israel or earth without revealing it to His servants the prophets (Amos 3:7). It was prophecy – not mystery – that pronounced the upcoming Day of the Lordtribulation for Israel beginning with Moses (Deut. 4:30). The prophets never saw the Body of Christ and thus didn’t include it in their writings. Since Israel is destined for her earthly kingdom, God must ultimately reinstate her to prophetic significance, which fits perfectly with Daniel’s seventieth week. In a precious twist of divine irony, prophecy (Israel, earthly) gave way to mystery (the church, heavenly) at Daniel’s 70th week; now mystery must give way to prophecy, which will resume for the one week still future. 

Facts about the Body of Christ

  • Presented as a Body where Christ is Head [no laws, land, or covenants] [24]
  • The Body exists as a mystery (Rom. 16:25) that will one day disappear in a mystery (1 Cor. 15:51).
  • The Body of Christ was unknown by the prophets and has no association with prophecy or future tribulation. [Our salvation is secure; sealed forever in Christ (Eph. 1:13-14; 4:30) with no further purification required].
  • Our inheritance is not in the earth, but in heaven with Jesus where we spiritually exist in Him (Eph. 1:3-4, 10; 2:6; col. 3:1-3) [25] at this moment, awaiting the promise Jesus made to return and take us to heaven (John 14:2-3; see 1 Thess. 4:13-18). This will happen at some undisclosed time in the future when the “fulness of the Gentiles be come in” (Rom. 11:25).
  • Paul is our apostle (Rom. 11:13; Gal. 2:7-8). His epistles (Romans-Philemon) provide all doctrine and duty for those in this “dispensation of the grace of God” (Eph. 3:2) personally given to him by Jesus in the “revelation of the mystery” (Rom. 16:25).
  • Occupies a temporary position on earth during Israel’s hiatus between Daniel’s 69th and 70th week (Dan. 9:24-27)
  • Was established by God to provoke Israel to jealousy leading to her conversion (Rom. 11:11).
  • Was unknown to any of the prophets (Col. 1:26)
  • Was never included in earthly prophecies featuring Israel’s Davidic Kingdom, and tribulation (“Jacob’s trouble” – Jer. 30:7) preceding it.
  • Appeared as a mystery (Rom. 16:25) [26] during Israel’s blindness (Rom. 11:7),
  • Will disappear in a mystery (1 Cor. 15:51) when “the fullness of the Gentiles be come in” (Rom. 11:25).
  • Cannot be seen anywhere in Israel’s tribulation! [27]

[1] These time periods are referred to as dispensations. The Old Scofield Bible defines a dispensation   as “a period of time during which man is tested in respect of obedience to some specific revelation of the will of God.” In simplest terms, dispensationalism teaches us that God dispenses his overarching program differently to the people living in different ages. As an example, God dealt with Adam differently than He did Abraham, who was dealt with differently than Moses, who was dealt with differently than Paul, and so forth. While some misunderstand the reality and relevance of this, the truth is if you don’t bring sacrificial lambs with you to the Jerusalem temple on Sabbath Saturdays, you are a dispensationalist because you have recognized they aren’t needed in this present period of time.

[2] For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope (Romans 15:4).

[3] For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. For a testament is of force after men are dead: otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator liveth. (Hebrews 9:16-17)

[4] This kingdom has been in the works from the beginning as revealed at the sheep and goat judgment: “Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (Matthew 25:34).

[5] God’s plan for an earthly Kingdom is always in view and Israel is always the subject of His love as the apple of His eye (Zech. 2:8).

[6] Prophecy is the distinguishing factor separating the Bible from all “religious” books in the world. Prophecy is what drew my dad to Christ in 1975 and kept him excited about the Lord’s return until April 10, 2009 when the Lord took him home. In short, prophecy for Israel is the main subject connecting our tribulation trilogy together.

[7] The Revelation of Jesus Christ is the public return of the Lord to Israel with the mystery church (1 Thess. 2:19; Rev. 19:14; Jude 1:14) already there with Him (John 14:2-3; 1 Thess. 4:13-18; Rev. 4:1; 19:11-21).

[8] Dan. 7:13-14; Zech. 14:1-4; compare Matt. 24:29-31; Rev. 1:7; 19:11-21.

[9] It is commonly referred to as the Millennial Reign of Christ and it was prepared “from the foundation of the world” (Matt. 25:34).

[10] And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God. (Zechariah 13:9)

[11] These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. (Matthew 10:5-6)

[12] And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. (Matthew 19:28)

[13] We have these in bonded leather KJV with the 1917 notes available through PMI for a gift of $34. Get it from PMI and you help our ministry.

[14] Did you take a lamb to church last week? If not, you are a dispensationalist.

[15] C.I. Scofield, Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth, p.1

[16] Origen was a rabid anti-Semitic, Gnostic whose Christ denigrating writings form the seedbed for many cults including Seventh Day Adventists, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormons, and all Jew hating cults in the history of the world. He is often distinguished as the first “Christian” mystic. He taught that Christ was inferior to the Father, reincarnation, a pre-existence of souls, universalism (everyone will ultimately be saved), a limited hell from which all will one day be reconciled to God, and many more egregious doctrines for which he was posthumously awarded the deserved title of heretic. Keep this in mind. He was the chief editor of the Alexandrian manuscript family underwriting all modernist translations used in a majority of “churches” today.

[17] He taught that Scripture possessed three possible meanings: (1) a literal or physical sense, (2) a moral or psychical sense, and (3) an allegorical or intellectual sense

[18] But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ (Galatians 1:11-12).

[19] 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. (Romans 11:25).But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: (1 Corinthians 2:7). Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself: That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: (Ephesians 1:9-10). 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: (Ephesians 3:3-9). This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church. (Ephesians 5:32).

[20] Cornelius Stam has written extensively on this. PMI also offers more on Prophecy and the Mystery.

[21] Epithets hurled against believers in an imminent, PreTrib rapture are unkind, untoward, and unchristian. One of many reoccurring charges is that of being in a clandestine conspiracy with the devil.

[22] Origen was the first to become discouraged with prophecy and turn from the literal method of interpreting Scripture. He corrupted Christian theology in Rome by replacing the Jews as God’s chosen people with Gentile Christianity. –JR Church, Prophecy in the News, April 1995, p. 28.

[23] Paul explains this very clearly in Ephesians 3:1-9.

[24] God made 5 unilateral covenants with Israel, none with the Body of Christ. We are merely the beneficiaries through Jesus.

[25] In Christ: 1:1,3,10,12,20; 2:6,10,13; 3:6,11; In the Lord: Ephesians 1:15; 2:21; 4:17; 5:8; 6:1,10,21;

[26] More information on the mystery nature of the Body of Christ discussed in Eph. 3:1-9; Col. 1:24-27.

[27] TO REITERATE IN TERMS AS CLEAR AS POSSIBLE: If the Body of Christ (church) is present on earth during Israel’s tribulation (Deut. 4:30; Zeph. 1-2), the Holy Spirit went to great lengths to keep us from knowing it. To wit, while we can easily find Israel and the anti-Semitic Gentile nations on earth during the tribulation – aka “the time of Jacob’s trouble” (Jer. 30:7; Dan. 12:1; Zeph. 1:15), the heavenly Body of Christ – which has been promised deliverance from this divine punishment (1 Thess. 1:10; 5:9; 2 Thess. 2:5-7; Rev. 3:10; see also Rev. 4:1) – is conspicuously absent (Rev. 6-19). Since we are not mentioned anywhere, it is clear to objective minded students the Lord has mysteriously removed us, “in a moment in the twinkling of an eye” (1 Cor. 15:51). Hallelujah to the Lamb, Jesus Christ our Lord!

[i] Chart: Prophecy Mystery Compared

ISRAEL BODY OF CHRIST
Earth Heaven
Prophecy

“time past” – “ages to come”

Mystery

“but now”

Gospel of the Kingdom Gospel of Grace
Prophets of Israel Apostle to the Gentiles (Paul)
Concerns a kingdom; a political organization (Dan.2:44, Matt. 6:10).

 

Concerns a body; a living

organism
(I Cor. 12:12,27, Eph. 4:12-16).

 

The kingdom to be established on earth
(Jer. 23:5, Matt. 6:10).
The body given a position in heaven
(Eph. 1:3, 2:5-6, Col. 3:1-3).
Christ to be its King 
(Jer.23:5, Isa. 9:6,7).
Christ its living Head
(Eph. 1:19-23, Col. 1:18).
The kingdom prophesied “since the world began”
(Luke 1:68-70, Acts 3:21).
The body chosen in Christ before the world began, but “kept secret since the world began”
(Rom. 16:25, Eph. 1:4-11, 3:5-9).
Israel to be given supremacy over the nations
(Isa. 60:10-12, 61:6).
Jew and Gentile placed on the same level before God (Rom. 10:12, 11:32, Eph. 2: 16,17).
The Gentiles to be blessed through Israel’s instrumentality
(Gen. 22:17,18, Zech. 8:13).
The Gentiles blessed through
Israel’s obstinacy
(Acts 13:44-46, Rom. 11:28-32).
The Gentiles to be blessed through Israel’s rise 
(Isa. 60:1-3, Zech. 8:22,23).
The Gentiles blessed through Israel’s fall 
(Acts 28:27,28, Rom. 11:11,12,15).
Prophecy mainly concerns nations as such
(Isa. 2:4, Ezek. 37:21,22).
The mystery concerns individuals (Rom. 10:12,13,

II Cor. 5:14-17).

Prophecy concerns blessings,
both material and spiritual, on earth (Isa. 2:3,4, 11:1-9, etc.).
The mystery concerns
“all spiritual blessings in the heavenlies”  (Eph. 1:3,Col. 3:1-3).
Prophecy concerns Christ’s
coming to the earth
(Isa. 59:20, Zech. 14:4).
The mystery explains
Christ’s present absence from the earth
(Eph. 1:20-23, Col. 3:1-3).
In prophecy salvation by grace through faith alone is not contemplated.

 

Salvation by grace through faith alone lies at the very heart of the mystery
(Rom. 3:21-26, 4:5, Eph. 2:8,9).
The proclamation of the prophetic program committed particularly to the twelve
(Matt. 10:5-7, Acts 1:6-8,3:19-26).
The proclamation of the mystery
committed particularly to Paul
(Eph. 3:1-3,8,9, Col. 1:24-27).
The prophetic program revealed through many of God’s servants
(Luke 1:70, II Pet. 1:21).
The mystery revealed through one man: Paul
(Gal. 1:1,11,12, 2:2,7,9,Eph. 3:2,3).
Old testament writers frequently
did not understand the prophecies made known through them
(Dan. 12:8-10, I Pet. 1:10-12).
Paul both understood and longed
that others might understand the mystery revealed through him.
(Eph. 1:15-23, 3:14-21,Col 1:9-10, 2:1-3).

 

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