God's First Purpose (1)
by Oscar M. Baker
God's purpose for the heavenlies is revealed in the Word. It was His first revealed plan. And it will be finished some day.
God's purpose for the earth and the heavens above it are also revealed in the Scriptures. But this is secondary. However, it is necessary that this one be worked out so that the first can be accomplished. So these purposes are dependent on each other to a certain degree.
The Dispensation of the Mystery was first in God's mind before the overthrow, before sin entered and ruined the first kosmos. And according to the prison epistles, this has to do with heavenly places and those that dwell in them, as well as those who some day will be resurrected and manifested there.
God had revealed that the nations of the earth were to be blest through Abraham and his seed after him, that is, Israel. And from Israel would come the Messiah, the promised Seed, to accomplish all this.
Israel failed, and so there is no channel of blessing to the nations today. They are not being blest. And this state has been with us for about 1912 years so far. And since the nations cannot and are not now blest, what is going on? Very few people know the answer to this question. It is because they do not know the Scriptures. Only they give the answers.
Even those who know about the Dispensation of the Mystery seem to be confused about when it began. They know about it, but they do not really know it. That is the problem.
When did it begin? It began when Israel were divorced and set aside, when they finally failed to believe and follow their Messiah and take part in the promised kingdom.
Nine of our New Testament books were written after this setting aside of Israel and a new program began. First was the Gospel of John. It was written for the whole world. It was written that folks might believe, so it was written to unbelievers. And the purpose was that they might have life, they might be able to comprehend the gospel of the Dispensation of the Mystery.
The mystery was proclaimed by Paul from his hired house in Rome, even though in chains. It was especially set forth in letters to the Ephesians and Colossians. At this point, Luke wrote the Acts of the Apostles to explain how that Israel failed and the nation of Israel set aside. Acts is really in defense of Paul and his special ministry of the mystery or secret.
And so God's first purpose was made known.
Now we can understand that in the little hired house in Rome happened one of the greatest and far-reaching events in world history. There was a great gap in the times of the Gentiles beginning at that point. And Israel left the scene as a nation from that day to this. No prophecy for the period since A.D. 70.