Maranatha Pearls - March-April, 2008

Maranatha Pearls
Volume #3March-April, 2008
2 Timothy 2:15

You will immediately notice the cover has changed. I said that as I become more acquainted with the computer I would begin to reformat the publication. And this is the case with this issue. Prayerfully I will continue to grow in knowledge and continue to reformat the Pearls, both to your edification and God's glorification.

This months topic is the glorification of our Head the Lord Jesus Christ. The scripture that I will begin with is: "But if the ministration of death, written and engraven in stones, was glorious, so that the children of Israel could not stedfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance; which glory was to be done away: How shall not the ministration of the spirit be rather glorious? For if the ministration of condemnation be glory, much more doth the ministration of righteousness exceed in glory. For even that which was made glorious had no glory in this respect, by reason of the glory that excelleth. For if that which is done away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious." (2 COR 3:7-11).

In any dispensational teaching we must establish: (1) Scriptural authority, (2) Scriptural meaning. I will expound these two truths by first establishing a meaning of the word dispensation. The word dispensation as defined in the previous passage is certainly a period of time deemed by God, who is the household owner, and orders His house as He wills. This agrees with the Greek word used in (EPH 1:10). For those like myself who enjoy the original languages, the Strongs # is 3622.

In the previous passage it should be noted that the economy of laws, that ministration of death written and engraven in stones, is done away. I will add that the only translation which has this truth plainly written is the Divine KJV. All other translations delete the progressive nature of God's Word. In doing so they join hands with satan in attempting to destroy the basis of Christianity which is the Word of God.

In 2 Corinthians we see a perfect example of one economy ending and another much more glorious beginning. At this point picture in your mind having a fancy sports car, and not only that, but one that is a limited edition. Now lets assume that the only thing we can see is a shadow of this tremendous car. We can equate this shadow with Israel, for all that Israel had was a shadow of what was, and what was to come.

In 2 Corinthians we see something that is to be MORE glorious than the shadow, some thing that exceeds in the expectations of the mind so much so that this rare car can be seen, but only in a picture. The real thing has yet to be seen, we've seen the shadow, the picture, and yet the real car the one sitting in the driveway is still distant and unseen.

During the interacts period all that that current dispensation had was the picture of the car. There was still some thing to be revealed to Paul by Christ which happened while Paul was in Rome.

Paul says some thing we should pay attention to, as he posits the physical against the spiritual in verses 7 and 8 respectively, and leaves us in the spiritual. What could be more glorious than the spiritual? As a matter of fact Paul clearly states that the spiritual which remains was that which excels in glory. Could there be anything more glorious than this?

It is at this point where the meat of Body truth begins leaving an expanse between the milk drinkers and the meat eaters. "That in the dispensation of the fullness 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:...And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his body, the fullness of him that filleth all in all... Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:...To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you the hope of glory." (EPH 1:10; Eph 1:22,23 PHIL 2:9; COL 1:27).

As we look at this profound speech we must carefully examine the words used and the time in which they are being used. Then Miles Coverdale's statement takes on the effect he intended. As a brand new Christian in 1995, I remember picking up the Word of God and reading it like a novel. I read the entire Bible in about a week and really wondered why so many were "studying" this book. As time went on I quickly realized that there was so much in this book that a lifetime was not enough time to really understand this marvelous Word that our Sovereign Lord has given us. It not only takes time, but a deep reverence for the God of all creation, the one with a name above all names, the one who in this economy is full and fully revealed to the church which is his actual Body, the Lord Jesus Christ.

The shift in Pauline speech in the post Acts epistles has given many the idea that Paul was not the author. The specific epistles of which I now speak are : Ephesians, Philippians, and Colossians. It is in these epistles that we see the sum of what we term "Body Truth". The other 4 post acts epistles are divided as: (1) Instructive, (2) Pastoral. These do have much Body Truth, but not in the revealing way which the other three reveal it.

Let us all remember who we are in Christ. let us take to heart the place that God has purposely placed the Lord Jesus Christ.

From a Body member:


The glory of God is His Blessed Son,
Let us seek Him through His Word;
On every page He will be found,
If we diligently look for our Lord.

He is exalted far above,
All things upon this earth;
Thrones, dominions, principalities, and powers,
Can never equal His worth.

The day is coming and upon us will soon be,
When all men will bow to Jesus Christ as Deity;
And every tongue be loosed to confess,
Jesus Christ is Lord all men will attest.

He is seated at the right hand of God,
And we are risen with our Lord Jesus Christ;
Our affections must be set on things above,
For we are dead and our life is hid with Christ in God.

Made captive to our blessed Head,
Full partakers of His inheritance in the light;
Delivered from the power of darkness,
Beholding Him at last, O most glorious sight!

Yea, that wondrous day is coming fast,
When our vile flesh shall be changed;
Fashioned like unto His glorious body at last,
Our hearts yearn for this final goal to attain.

So cause us in Thy grace to continue,
With a steadfast purpose, "this one thing I do";
Forgetting those things that once held us bound,
That in the righteousness of Christ we may be found.

May our Lord Jesus Christ be exalted,
In all we do, think and say;
For He is our Head and worthy,
To be magnified by His own alway!

Virginia Robinson wants to thank all the Members of the Body for their prayers, cards, and phone calls while she recovers from her hip replacement. It's so important that we continue to envelope our brothers and sisters in need, and not only them, but for each member who has unspoken prayers that need be answered.

The scripture to memorize this month is Eph. 1:10. "That in the dispensation of the fullness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth; even I him". This particular Scripture shows both the exaltation of Christ our Head, and also the togetherness and the fullness of the age.

From brother Dale:

The exaltation of Christ is the present age of grace. (EPH 1:21) says it all: "(He is) far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come".

These are attributes given to the Lord Jesus Christ upon His ascension into the heavenlies. Never more again to be mocked, ridiculed, cursed at, spat upon, hated, misunderstood, or railed against. Just the adjective "far" in this verse leads us to believe that He is not only above all things, but also "far" above all things. We know not His ways for they are not our ways. We know not His thoughts for they are not our thoughts, but upon conversion and being given the mind of Christ, we can, for the first time, have a Godlike mind and a God fearing understanding of who He is. I have often said we ought not love Jesus Christ for what He did, but rather because of Who He is. He is our Head, our Redeemer, and our Lord and Saviour, praise be to His Matchless Name.

Dale is right with these words explaining the place from which our dear Lord sits and reigns. God the Father purposely placed His Blessed Son in a place of superior exaltation that every mouth is not only stopped but forced to recognize the Shekinah Glory of our Lord. The same glory that John and Peter saw on the mountain top, and which Paul saw on the road to Damascus. Let us all look forward with anticipation for the day of Christ when He will appear with His Body and take us to our HOME!

A careful read of (EPH 3:1-11) will help any student of the word in understanding dispensational truth. This is the dispensation of the Mystery, and mystery means a secret kept from the foundation of the world and only revealed to the Apostle Paul. Not only is the exaltation of Christ the centerpiece, but our relationship to Him is also a major factor.

In (EPH 3:6) we see 3 terms which show perfect togetherness. They are: strong's #'s 4789, 4959, and 4830. These mean respectably same heir, same body, and same participant. We see in this dispensation not only the exaltation of our Head the Lord Jesus Christ, but also the unity of the body of Christ which is the church.

You are looking at a picture of Ken, William Hughes, and myself. This was taken on April 9th when Ken was in Jacksonville. This was the first time I heard Ken teach in person from the Scriptures (prior to this it was tape recorded). It was also a joy to William who commented on the blessings of the day. I am very thankful that God allowed us to have this precious time together as fellow believers in Christ.

From Ken:

We have two creations before us in Colossians 1:15-19. The preeminence of Christ is in this age of grace. This age of grace is the preeminence of Christ as the Head over all things to the church which is His Body. Glorious things are here said of Christ for Paul was full of Christ. He distinctly speaks of Christ as God and Mediator.

The two creations are:

(1)The original creation in which Christ is preeminent as the image of the God. He is so far from being Himself a creature that He is the Creator. (2) The new spiritual creation in which Christ is preeminent as the Head of the Body, and also seen as the One Whom all fullness dwells.

It is almost impossible to handle aright the truth of the doctrine of the invisible God and Christ His image. The mighty sweep of creation that is unfolded here leaves the mind in a sort of wonderment. Yet even more amazing is the transition from the Headship of the church which is His Body. That He should create is natural, but that He should redeem and reconcile sinful men is a revelation of greater glory.

Paul takes both the material and the spiritual creations showing the unique place of the Lord Jesus Christ in each. As the firstborn of every creature He is eternal, and not only had being before creation, but before all time. This signifies His dominion over all things and as the first born in a family is heir and Lord of all. He is before all things and without Him there is no life or light. Christ is the source of all life and light in the physical creation, and is eternal life and light in Himself in the spiritual creation.

As the Head of creation He is the Creator, Sustainer, and Preserver of it all. He is its Mediator. He is the beginning for He is its Redeemer, and in resurrection He is the prototype for He was the first to rise from the dead by His own power to recreate anew all those chosen in Him. In this glorious resurrection of Christ was proof by God that He was indeed preeminent over all things, and that He was part of the Divine counsel long before there ever was a creation. In His glorious resurrection as the firstborn from the dead He is the first fruits by which all those in Him shall also be raised and fashioned like unto His glorious Body.

It pleased the Father that in Christ should all fullness dwell. This gives reason why He should be the Head of the church which is His Body. Since He is the Son of the Fathers love in Whom He is pleased, it is in Him alone that all fullness dwells. All the fullness of God as the God-Man. His personal glory, supremacy, and glory is not in Him as the Divine glory dwelt for awhile in the tabernacle of Moses, and the temple of Solomon, but dwells in Him continually and constantly. Christ as the Head of the Body filled with all the fullness of God doth then fill up the emptiness of the members with the abundant grace that perpetually resideth in Him.

I thank all of you who prayed for me during my recent trip to the southland. God provided journey mercies and providential mercies all along the way. To all who allowed me to stay with them in their homes, I extend my gratitude for your hospitality and kindness. I do believe that in every place the time was redeemed for the glory of our precious Saviour and Lord. I truly enjoyed the fellowship in the Word with all of you.

The next issue of Pearls is not going to be on one particular subject. Rather it will be several studies from Allan Naas, David Doyle, and myself.

Reminder to make your reservations for the summer conference if you are able to attend. The dates again are: June 24th-27th. Reservations need to be made before June 1st. The number to call is: 1-800-846-6431, or: 517-886-0600. The rate is the same as last year, $69.00+ tax. We will be ending at 3:00 pm on Friday for those who want to make plans to return home.