GONE TO THE DOG'S
by Frank Stigall
The Two Gospels
The mystery was a plan of God before the foundation of the world was laid, in fact there was no world at this time. This mystery plan took place in eternity past. Furthermore, this plan was shut up, and not revealed to anyone. This is actually the plan we are in today. Referring to the first chart below, in one circle is the phrase ,“The Mystery, Christ Birthed in you.”
However, we are getting ahead of ourselves. In the other circle it says “Christ the Lamb.” This is the plan that was first introduced to the world, the mystery plan will be kept hidden until the day of Pentecost, was rejected, and then revealed to Paul who became an apostle to the uncircumcised Gentiles. For a little more than four thousand three hundred years and five dispensations the world rocked on without ever knowing what had taken place in eternity past (the mystery). No prophet ever prophesied about the mystery. (Rom. 16:25; 1 Cor. 2:7; Col. 1:26). It may even help you to know what gospel was being preached and how many gospels there are. From the chart you can see there are two gospels. One is called “The Circumcised Gospel” and the other is called “The Uncircumcised Gospel.” “But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel of the uncircumcision was committed unto me, as the gospel of the circumcision was unto Peter;” (Gal. 2:7).
However, very soon we will find those neither circumcised, nor uncircumcised matters. In fact these words are referring to the Jews (the circumcised) and to the Gentiles (the uncircumcised). If any accept Christ, they become a new creature in Christ. “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.” (Gal 6:15). No Mystery in Old Testament I have illustrated in Figure 1, Part I (see page 6 of this article), the path of the believer to indicate the mystery of Christ birthed in you as your life, none of which ever existed in the Old Testament. No one was ever born again until the day of Pentecost. Even at Pentecost there is no scriptural evidence that anyone understood or had a revelation of the mystery. Therefore, for all in- tent and purpose the mystery was rejected. On the day of this new message (Pentecost) Peter commingled this outpouring of the Holy Spirit with a prophecy from the book of Joel. Peter did not have the revelation of the mystery. Sure he preached about Jesus of Nazareth, and said if they (Jews) would repent and be baptized.
He would come back. In contrast, Paul preaching Christ would call us up to meet him in the air. Peter has Christ coming down and Paul has the Church going up. However, both are right. Peter is right in saying Jesus will come back. However, it is not in harmony with the mystery plan, but fits the plan for Israel (Acts 3:19-20). Paul is right in what he says because the rapture will occur, and the church will be called away. The mystery plan must take place first and the body of Christ be gathered unto the Lord in heaven (1 Th 4:14, 15,17). Then the plan for the return or the Second Advent of Christ that Peter preached about will take place. Was Pentecost A Disappointment? As you refer back to the first chart above, you might understand that Pentecost turned out to be somewhat of a disappointment, because Peter failed to hear the message. What was the message? The message was about the Church, the body of Christ, the mystery, and the birthing. The only way he could have understood it was by revelation, not by prophecy. This was the very purpose Jesus told his disciples that He would be sending the Holy Spirit after His ascension. “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” (John 14:26). Peter failed to hear the message the Holy Spirit brought at Pentecost.
God waited thirteen years before he revealed to Paul the revelation of the mystery, and sent him out as an apostle to the Gentiles (the uncircumcised). I think God planned Paul before the foundation of the world, with or without Peter, as one chosen “out of due season,” someone who never knew Christ after the flesh, someone totally new. Just like Moses didn’t get to take people into the Promised Land, so did Peter not get to take Israel into the Church (mystery). However, this caused a conflict between Peter and Paul as Peter was still preaching the kingdom message, and Paul was preaching the grace message. I have illustrated in Figure 1, Part I and illustrated again here, these messages are on two separate and distinct courses. They cannot be mixed as each wind up in two different destinations. Peter still wanted to preach the kingdom message to the Jews only, and shut out the Gentiles. It was the way the law was for seventeen hundred years. Gentiles were considered to be as low as dogs. Israel was the elite, chosen of God, and was of the seed of Abraham. The sign over their head said “No Gentiles allowed”. Each message has their own plan, and both have different endings. Under the circumcised plan for Israel, ends with them being restored to this earth (to the land) with Christ as king. This is an excellent plan. On the other hand, the Church is the body of Christ, a group of spiritually birthed people who become sons of God. “And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.” (Rom.8:17).
However, I can see the Grace of God working. If this had not been pleasing to the Lord then I doubt the Lord would have performed all these miracles through Peter. Peter was only doing what Jesus told the twelve to do after the Holy Spirit came on them. (Luke 24:44-49; Mark 16:16-18). It would appear that the door was still open for Israel to accept Jesus as their Messiah. Peter preached his kingdom message and three thousand were saved and at another time he preached and five thousand were saved. However, when Peter preached the kingdom message in the house of Cornelius, a Gentile, the Holy Spirit fell on them, and interrupted Peter’s kingdom message. There was no doubt that in Peter’s mind Jesus was the resurrected Messiah, who would bring deliverance and salvation to Israel. However, at this time Peter knew nothing of the mystery, later in life he will understand. If you follow the chart in Figure 1, below, you will notice that two gospels are illustrated, for each of the two different ages. The first gospel spanned four thousand three hundred years and five dispensations.
It was the one that was in operation in all the days of Jesus of Nazareth, and up to Acts 28:28. At this point the prophetic message to Israel was put on hold. However, we must see from Acts 1 to Acts 28:28 both doors were open. Even Paul preached about prophecy and
Moses to the Jews in order to persuade them that Jesus was their Messiah. It is called a transnational time. The kingdom message is slowly being phased out as the grace message gains momentum through the revelations of Paul. Both Jew and Gentile can achieve salvation now, by being born again. “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Gal 3:28)
Who Are the Dogs “But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help. But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and cast it to dogs. And she said, Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.” (Mat 15:24-27). This is a strong statement by Jesus, he just called this Gentile woman a dog. On other occasions, this term is used to describe Gentiles. Why did he say that, and why did he say he was only sent to the lost sheep of the house of Israel? Two questions that demand an answer. Answer to the first question is this.
The Gentile races were the first people on this earth. They became very sinful. In fact, so sinful God said He gave them up in two separate statements of abandonment. In Romans 1:24, 26 it says God gave them over to a reprobate mind. (Rom. 1:28). In fact most of the first chapter of Romans is why this Gentiles race became known as dogs. So this is the reason Jesus said do not go to the Gentiles, because God in heaven gave them up. Answer to the second question is, it was not the time of the Gentiles, that second race was still being dealt with. Let us see in part what happened at the cross. The Sanhedrin had completely rejected Jesus and he was crucified. “And how the chief priests and our rulers delivered him to be condemned to death, and have crucified him.” (Luke 24:20). However, let your ears and eyes receive this statement because it is one you most likely have not heard before. Even though Israel rejected Jesus, Jesus never rejected the Jews, he could not because he was sent to them only. The cross was not the end of the Jews, in fact, Jesus was their Day of Atonement sacrifice. The message of the kingdom to the Jews did not suddenly end. It is true the law was fulfilled at the cross and no more sacrifice will ever be needed again for sin. But the Jews remain God’s chosen people. We need to understand something about the law. I have nothing to do with the promises to Abraham and Law could not nullify the promises to Abraham. Even though the law came 430 years later, was added because of the transgressions of Israel (Gal. 3:19).
Therefore, the law of Moses ended at the cross. It is this part that religion has tried to perpetrate. However, the promises to Abraham have never been fulfilled and will not be until the millennium. Furthermore, they must be fulfilled with Israel, and not the Church. God is honor bound to the Jews because of the promises, and the covenants he made with Abraham. God Himself promised He alone would fulfill every covenant with the seed of Abraham. So God is honor bound not to cast this people away like He did the Gentiles. So after the resurrection of Jesus he turned again to the Israelite, and conducted a forty day seminar to the Jews only. At this time the Gentiles have still not been invited to partake. For instance, there were two disciples on the road of Emmaus that Jesus joined himself to and he opened the word to them. “And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.” (Luke 24:27). Now if you have a discerning mind you will see, Jesus preached from Moses and the Prophets.
He did not preach the mystery or anything about being born again. The mystery had never entered the mind of a prophet, and kept secret since the world began (Rom. 16:25). So what was Jesus teaching? It had to be the kingdom message. So see the Jews were still in the running. Jesus never at any time during this forty days said a word about the mystery. However, He did tell the eleven apostles what to preach, to heal, and go to all nations and baptize them in water. Again, this was part of the kingdom message. These instructions were delivered in as little as ten days before Jesus ascended. The question we must ask ourselves: is this the message Jesus wanted the eleven to preach or is there another, or were these forty days of teaching a waste of time.
The Book of Acts
This is the great day that Jesus spoke about that would come. It was 50 days after the crucifixion. Jesus said he would send the Holy Ghost to comfort us. This is what Jesus said would happen when the Holy Spirit comes. “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” (John 14:26). The cross changed many things for Jews and Gentiles. One of those things that changed is God has reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 5:18). Both first and second races have been reconciled to God. However, another thing that happened is that Israel no longer has the old blood covenant because the law of Moses has been fulfilled in Jesus Christ.
Now is the time for Israel to reach out and accept the new blood covenant, which was promised to them by God. “Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.” (Jer. 31:31) “And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel.” (Heb 12:24). It will not be like the Mosaic covenant in that it was conditional, but the new covenant will be unconditional. Its provisions will include a change of heart, fellowship with God, knowledge of the Lord, and forgiveness of sins. Israel did not embrace Jesus as their Messiah so they in effect turned down their new covenant, which was promised to Abraham. Did the Holy Spirit want to preach about the new covenant to Israel, or deliver the mystery message, or both? I believe all is in the state of transition with two possibilities before us here in the book of Acts. The book of Acts when examined is about the decline of the kingdom message and the rise of the mystery message which was given to Paul, both of which seem to be running
concurrently after Acts 9.
However, the kingdom message has greatly declined. Peter still holds to some of the element of this message, mainly circumcision, and he is not completely ready to accept the Gentiles with an open heart. Acts 1-8, the kingdom message, is being preached by Peter, and Stephen with great impact. Philip on the other hand did go to the Gentiles but preached with great authority. This was a departure from what the others were doing. However, nothing of the birthing is being talked about but Moses and the prophets are strongly presented. A review of those first eight chapters in Acts would be a good thing to do. The most amazing thing that I have found is these Israelites who accepted Jesus as their Messiah started to live like they were living in the kingdom of God on this earth. When Peter got through preaching, they were so pricked in their hearts to think they crucified the Messiah, they rushed forward and asked how to be saved. “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” (Acts 2:38). Notice, this is the kingdom way of salvation. Peter said for them to be baptized in water, but the born again are baptized into Christ, and have been baptized into his death at the cross.
Furthermore, Peter says water will wash away sin. Christians believe they are washed in the blood of Jesus. This is really coming short of the gospel under grace. Then there were added to the church three thousand souls (Acts 2:41). The salvation of souls is an Old Testament term. Even though we call salvation the saving of souls, it is not. We are birthed new—not made over. Then it says they continued in the Apostles doctrine, which entailed the offer of the kingdom, and a new covenant. What happened next could only be explained like this. Peter has convinced them their Messiah was coming back, and they must have perceived it as being He would come back by next week at the latest. So strong was their belief that they began living the kingdom message. They firmly believed nothing of this world’s goods mattered if the kingdom was here then they have no need of anything. “Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold. “And laid them down at the apostles’ feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.” (Acts 4:34-35) I used to say the same thing, sell it all, the Lord is coming soon, and you won’t need it. Well, I was only trying to be smart. However, these people were for real in that they believed in what they were doing.
They had no doubt that their Messiah was about to return and sit on the thrown of David. These people actually lived in kingdom authority. It is hard to say how many groups of people have pulled away from society and decided to live like this early group of people in Acts, only to end up in failure and uncleanness. If you stick around long enough and make it into the millennium then this will work. I am simply stating that this is the wrong message for now. Peter was so mightily used they placed people so Peter’s shadow might fall on them, and they were healed (Acts 5:15). So great was the power through Peter that it says, “they were healed, everyone” (Acts 5:16). There were no hit and misses—all were healed, regardless of what the problem was. “For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed.” (Acts 8:7) John 13 tells us that Jesus knew his hour was coming, that he should depart this world and go to the Father. So I would suspect that he gave some of his most important teaching about himself and what the Holy Spirit was to do while he was gone. John 14-17 is almost only the words of Jesus.
A careful look at his words will confirm that Jesus wanted to come in them and abide with them. “Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.” (John 14:23) And they should come to this understanding “At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.” (John 14:20) There are many other scriptures in these four chapters that say pretty much the same thing. Plus, there are many scriptures concurring to operation of the Holy Spirit as teacher and that he shall teach you all things. So these words set the stage for the day of Pentecost. However, we have a forty-day period of time after the resurrection of Jesus that he instructs the eleven apostles what to do and what to preach on five different occasions (Matt. 28:18-20, Mark 16:15-18, Luke 24:45-48, John 20:21-23, Acts 1:8,9). In these instructions to the eleven he does not say anything about the mystery. He does not claim heaven for those who believe, does not say we are baptized into one body, does not teach that there is no difference between Jew and Gentile, and does not teach salvation by grace through faith.
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