Class Notes: 5/23/2008
Jesus Christ is the reference for the mandates of the Royal Law for the Church
We are presently doing a brief study of how the resurrection, ascension and session of our Lord impacted the spiritual life of believers in the Church Age.
When we stopped last time we were discussing Paul's reference to the mystery that comprises the doctrine for the spiritual life of the church in 1Cor 2:7; "But we communicate God's wisdom in a mystery, the hidden assets which God predestined before the ages to our glory."
An aspect of the Mystery is the portfolio of invisible assets which God the Father provided for every believer in eternity past.
This includes what is described as the "escrow blessings" that were deposited by God in eternity past and are conveyed to believers at spiritual maturity when they have capacity to receive them.
Election and predestination are the grace policy that God uses to provide these escrow blessings to believers. Remember election and predestination are for believers only.
Predestination is the divine provision for the believer to execute the protocol plan of God, Election is God's selection of believers to use the plan, Eph 1:3-5;
Every believer has a unique mission in this life. The objective of each believer is to glorify God in a unique way. God provides all of the resources. This mission is fulfilled when the believer becomes a witness for God as an invisible hero in the invisible war by taking advantage of what God has provided in his Grace.
1Cor 4:1; "Let mankind regard us (communicators of the Mystery doctrine (in the context, Paul, Apollos, and Peter) in this manner as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God." The same principle is found in Eph 3:7-9.
Paul writes to Timothy about it in 1Tim 3:9; "With a pure conscience, keep holding "the mystery"" Net note 14
In the Greek, the words "the mystery" are monadic and refer to a unique or one of a kind object. In this case it is the unique body of doctrine that is only made available to the church.
Col 2:2, "That their hearts (the right lobe of the soul where the thinking is done) may be encouraged, having been held together by means of virtue love, and resulting in all the riches from the full assurance of technical knowledge (insight) resulting in epignosis knowledge or spirit taught doctrine of God's mystery, that is, Christ."
Here we see the connection between TLJC in Hypostatic Union and the Church Age believer. The humanity of Christ pioneered the maximum use of divine omnipotence inside the prototype divine power system. Church Age believers have the operational type divine power system that uses that same omnipotence.
One of the functions of the pastor-teacher is described in Eph 3:9; NET "And to enlighten everyone about God's secret plan."
The context is Eph 3:2-6; "Inasmuch as you have heard about the dispensation of the grace of God which was given to me for your benefit,
v3 that through revelation the mystery doctrine was made known to me just as I have already written briefly.
v4 By reading this, you ought to be able to understand my technical knowledge about the mystery of Christ (same monadic construction in the Greek)
v5 which was not made known to mankind in other ages, so that it has now been revealed to His holy apostles, and the prophets, by the Spirit;
v6 that Gentiles are fellow-heirs and members together of the same body and sharers together of the same promises in Christ Jesus through the Gospel."
Never before in human history has the grace policy of God promised so much for ordinary believers, no matter how insignificant their role in society during their life in time appears to be.
Another aspect of the Mystery Doctrine is Marriage in the Church Age. This is because believers in Christian marriages have the opportunity to become a unique class of witnesses that provide testimony in the invisible war thereby Glorifying God through their marriage. In their witness, Christ becomes the basis of their testimony.
Eph 5:32; "And this mystery is great, but I am speaking with reference to Christ and with reference to the Church."
Church Age believers are in union with Christ and share everything He has. Union with Christ is the only true equality in all of human history. Both of these prepositional phrases refer to the positional sanctification that occurs anytime anyone expresses faith alone in TLJC alone for salvation.
Christian marriage is entirely different from the concept of marriage as it existed previously in human history because it is used to portray the relationship between Christ and the Church.
The divine institution of marriage during the Church Age is far more important and has greater repercussions than any other period of human history because it is related to the mystery doctrine of the Royal Law.
Mystery doctrine reveals that the believer's relationship with Christ is the basis for the three laws of the Christian marriage in the Royal Law.
The Royal Law defines the responsibility of the Husband:
Eph 5:25; Husbands, aggressively love your wives with enduring devotion, just as Christ also aggressively loved the church and gave Himself up as a substitute for her.
Col 3:19; Husbands, love your wives, and stop being bitter against them.
The Royal Law also defines the responsibility of the wife:
Eph 5:22; Wives, submit yourselves to the authority of your own husbands, as to the Lord,
v. 23 because the husband is the head of the wife just as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself is the Savior of the body.
Eph 5:24; But just as the church is subordinate to Christ, so also wives are under the authority of their husbands in all things.
The Royal Law then goes on to define the mutual responsibility of both the husband and the wife:
Eph 5:32; This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and to the church.
v. 33 Let each husband aggressively love his own wife even as himself; and let the wife see to it that she respects her husband in response to his aggressive love for her.
Eph 4:32; Become kind, performing gracious acts toward each other, and compassionate, and keep forgiving each other just as God also by the agency of Christ has forgiven you for your benefit.
Since the Royal Law is the basis for the believer's function in marriage and marriage provides one of the greatest venues for the believer's witness in the invisible war we will now take up a brief discussion of the Royal law.
The royal law is related to the three groups of elect people in human history and addresses the unique protocol for believers' relationship with God during their respective dispensations.
In various forms it applies to the dispensation of Israel, the dispensation of the Hypostatic union and the dispensation of the Church.
The royal law was not formally called "the royal law" until the Church Age, but in principle it is first mentioned in Lev 19:18; with the command "Do not seek revenge, or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people (citizens of Israel), but you shall love your neighbor as you love yourself; (because) I (am) the Lord."
The phrase "you shall love your neighbor as you love yourself" is called the royal law in the New Testament, but was not known by this title in the age of Israel. Loving yourself has to do with spiritual self esteem that comes from the capacity from Bible Doctrine that is created in the believer's soul by their advance in God's plan.
In Israel, their neighbor was every other Israelite or in the case of the Jews in the NT every other Jew.
This is a command to use the fourth stage of the faith-rest drill. Old Testament believers were to use their faith and put the matter before the supreme court of heaven rather than seek revenge. They were not to meet a sin with a sin.
It is a statement of impersonal love that could not be executed by the believers of the Old Testament with the same enduring power that it can be it the Church Age.
Old Testament believers could only go as far as their spiritual life would allow, and their spiritual life was comprised of the faith-rest drill. They could only put the matter before the supreme court of heaven and leave the outcome to the integrity of God thereby relying on the perfect function of divine justice.
In the dispensation of Israel believers had the faith-rest drill, but they did not have the filling of the Holy Spirit, nor did they have the doctrine related to the prototype spiritual life.
Only a few OT believers had what is referred to as the enduement of the Holy Spirit because there was no filling of the Holy Spirit until the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ when God became man in Hypostatic Union.
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