Thesis #94 of 95 - Certain important (but non-essential) mysteries have been hidden from the Church during much of her earthly pilgrimage.
Acts1:7 Jesus said to them, “It is not for you (apostles) to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority”
Eph3:9-10 (Paul) to enlighten all people regarding the plan of the mystery which for ages has been hidden in God, who created all things; so that the multifaceted wisdom of God might NOW be made known through the church to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenly places.
1Tim2:6 (Christ) gave himself as a ransom for all, the evidence for which [μαρτύριονG3142] is to be provided in due time.
Rom8:19-21 [NASB] For the eagerly awaiting creation waits for the revealing of the sons and daughters of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly but because of Him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God.
Rev10:2-4 (The angel) had in his hand a little book, which was open. He placed his right foot on the sea and his left on the land; and he cried out with a loud voice, as when a lion roars; and when he had cried out, the seven peals of thunder uttered their voices. When the seven peals of thunder had spoken, I was about to write; and I heard a voice from heaven, saying, “Seal up the things which the seven peals of thunder have spoken, and DO NOT WRITE THEM.
Mal4:5-6 Lo, I will send you the prophet ‘Elijah’ before the great and terrible day of the Lord comes. He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, otherwise I will come and strike the land with a curse.
Mt24:14 This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.
Enoch1:1 [opening verse] The words of Enoch to be a blessing to the elect and the righteous who will be living in the day of tribulation when all the wicked and godless are to be removed.
Enoch93:10 At the close (of the seventh ‘week’) shall be chosen the elect righteous (ones) of the eternal plant of righteousness to receive a seven-part instruction concerning all of God’s creation.
Enoch104:11-13 When they write down truthfully all my words in their languages, and do not change or remove anything from my words but write them all down truthfully, then I know another mystery, that books will be given to the righteous and the wise to become a cause of joy and uprightness and much wisdom. And to them shall the books be given, and they shall believe in them and rejoice over them, and then shall all the righteous who have learnt from them the ways of uprightness be recompensed.
Note that this thesis affirms that certain important but non-essential mysteries have been hidden from the Church. By non-essential I mean non-fatal to the saving mission of the Church. As a former Evangelical, I (typically) hadn’t really thought this matter through. For I effectively had worked on the premise that until Martin Luther came along, the churches for at least the previous 1000 years had universally failed to apprehend or teach the effectual means of deliverance from perdition.
According to Luther, even the earliest Fathers of the Church had been in darkness concerning justification and saving faith. I now know this to be an irrational absurdity and a denigration of God’s providential care for the world. It is also an affront to our Saviour’s historical stewardship of the very people He regards as His own Body (Col1:24).
Nevertheless, there are issues that have been hidden from the Church that although not essential to her saving mission are important. And they become positively critical as the Day of Christ’s return approaches. Some of these are identified in the verses above. I believe them to pertain to:
- The mystery concerning the precise nature of the current and impending epochs vis-à-vis Old Testament prophecy (Acts1:7; Eph3:9-10)
- the breadth of God’s benign providence and the scope of Christ’s atoning work (1Tim2:6; Rom8:19-21)
- the mystery of the Little Book (Rev10:2-4)
- the doctrinal rectification and eventual reconciliation of the churches enabling a coherent gospel to be preached to the world before Christ’s coming [Mal4:5-6; Mt24:14]
- the extraordinary means by which some of the above shall come about [Enoch references]
The few verses from ex-canonical Enoch have been included as they deal with some of these issues more explicitly than the intentionally veiled references within the bible. The Book of Enoch was rightly excluded from the canon, not least in view of its opening verse. That indicates it was written specifically for the generation of Christians that would live to see Christ’s return. The Book was nevertheless regarded as inspired writing by many of the early Church Fathers and verses from it are to be found in the New Testament (Jude vv14-15).
Re: Acts1:7 Times and seasons a matter for the Father https://richard777.blog/2020/07/02/the-current-epochs-role-in-salvation-history/
Re: Prophecies of Enoch https://richard777.blog/2021/06/16/book-of-enoch-prophecy/
Re: The final prophet https://richard777.blog/2020/04/27/elijah-yet-to-come/