By Joseph L. Watkins
Yes the Word of Truth - For Today - or that "one" message out of God deposited with Paul, that "one" divinely commissioned apostle to all the saints, of all the nations, of all the world; a good-news message, that only a saint of God can receive for the natural seed of Adam's race - "...cannot receive the things of the Spirit of God, for theyare foolishness unto him; neither can he know them, because they are spirituallydiscerned" (I Cor. 2:14.)
Paul, under the directions of his Lord, addresses only the Saints of God in Christ Jesus. His message is an invitation, a calling, HIS CALLING, and He never calls to the unsaved, as they cannot hear, they being dead. His Calling, or His Invitations, are only to His Own - to His Own Children, and always Children, are being called unto a "sonship" position and unto a "sonship" portion. The saints are being called unto service for the Lord.
Here in Paul's message, the Spirit of All Truth is "calling" for the saints to become "faithing ones," or believing believers. At the writing of this new message, many of the "faithing ones" had their faith or their hope resting in the Coming Messianic Kingdom, the Messiah's "parousia" See #3952 and study Matt. 24:3 and the note in the Companion Bible; study also 2 Peter 1:10: "make your calling and election sure." This became a concern because of Paul's message. That invitation to come into the Kingdom had been put on hold, and His Calling is now to come into "the body", which is the divine "out-calling" (# 1577 ek-klesia) for today.
Think on this: When John the Baptist was sent unto the people of Israel, it was to offer them a "position and a portion" in the Kingdom of the Messiah, or a place in the ek-klesia, or Church of Jesus Christ, and the Lord Himself, and His Twelve, and His one apostle to the Gentiles, all were offering the "faithing ones" of that day "a place and a hope" in the Church of Jesus Christ.
Yes, those of that great "out-calling" was being baptized or "identified" with the One True Messiah were being baptized or "identified" with the One True Messiah, the One True Savior, the One True King of all the world. But, as that great church, with its hope, was put on hold at Acts 28:28, the Spirit of Truth came unto His apostle to the nations, Paul, and gave unto him a new invitation, a new calling, a new hope, even a place in His new church, which is His body.
"This is a great mystery; but I speak concerningChrist and the church"
So, in Eph. 3:7-11 Paul wrote: v. 7: "ofwhich (I) became minister according to the gift of the grace ofGod, the one given to me according to the working of the power of Him." v. 8: "to me the least of all the saints given of the grace, thisin the nations, proclaiming the unsearchable riches of the Christ."
In genuine, sincere humility, this faithful servant sees himself as the "least of all saints." This is the natural reaction of a faithing one, as that one truly sees the GRACE of the God of all grace at work in his own life. Especially as that one is given a full view of His divine purpose in the heavenlies. Even as that one personally experiences "the working of the power of Him" in his own life.
However, what we need to focus on here is that he is proclaiming the unsearchable riches of the Christ of God. First we need to see that the Christ of God, Messiah King of Israel, and the whole earth, has a great many riches. Yet, most of all, these are openly revealed in His Word of Truth, whereas, now Paul is here proclaiming the riches of the anointed God, that have never before been revealed to anyone, at any time. Never before had the Spirit come to Paul, at Rome, in his own hired house, just after the Lord rendered His Lo-Ammi judgment on the people of Israel at Acts 28:28. And no one that mixes or does not "divide" or "segregate" these divine riches, one from the other, can ever come unto the knowledge of the truth.
v. 9: "Even enlighten all what (is) theMessage of the Musterion, the one hidden from the ages, in the God, theOne, the all created for the sake of Jesus Christ."
The King James says, "and to make all men seewhat is the fellowship of the mystery." Of all the poor work in translating our Bible, this verse may just top the list.
The word for "man" is not even in the Greek text, and the words "to make see" are an impossibility, even for Paul. And even the Lord waits for His Word of Truth to work its great work of producing "Faith" in a man's heart, as He never "makes us do" - that is just not a part of His way of seeing His purpose accomplished. All is of Grace, that is might be of Faith. Amen. We have so much more to add concerning this verse in the next paper.