Grace Bible Church
Pastor Teacher
Robert R. McLaughlin
Wednesday, March 12, 2014

We are now going to note what makes the Church-age unique which is the fact that this is the dispensation of no prophecy and therefore, a dispensation which continues on the basis of historical trends.

It means that even though history is the record of man’s thoughts, decisions, actions and motivations, it is Jesus Christ who ultimately controls all of history, both human and angelic.

The Church-age is the first dispensation in which Jesus Christ controls history from His Hypostatic Union, as the God-Man, true humanity and undiminished deity in one person forever.

Because mankind has a free will, he is also responsible for many of the things that take place in human history as well.

1. There is the DIRECTIVE will of God which means that God has a plan for each of our lives which is communicated DIRECTLY
through His Word.

2. The DETERMINATIVE will of God where God has DETERMINED the free will of His creatures to bring them to the place of blessing or cursing.

3. There is the PERMISSIVE will of God where negative volition to Bible doctrine is PERMITTED, but also there is the divine justice which provides a horrible life and death.

4. The PREVENTATIVE will of God whereby God provides Bible doctrine, establishment laws, and discipline to PREVENT human volition inside the will of God from self-destruction.

5. The OVERRULING will of God which supersedes the directive and permissive will of God, and involves the frustration of man’s will and Satan’s will whenever God sees fit to OVERRULE the decisions of mankind and angelic volition.

God controls the circumstances but does not interfere with the operation of one’s own free will or volition.

We not only call this the dispensation of the Church-age, but we also call it the dispensation of historical trends.

The first prophecy was to be fulfilled when the Church-age began. At this time, there was the prophecy of the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ followed by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

MAT 16:4 “An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign; and a sign will not be given it, except the sign of Jonah.” And He left them, and went away. – fulfilled in MAT 12:39-40.

The only other prophecy which we are waiting to be fulfilled is the prophecy at the end of the Church-age which is the prophecy of the Rapture.

1TH 4:16-17, “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God; and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and thus we shall always be with the Lord.

1CO 15:51-52, Behold, I tell you a mystery; we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.

JAM 5:7-8, Be patient, therefore, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. Behold, the farmer waits for the precious produce of the soil, being patient about it, until it gets the early and late rains. You too be patient; strengthen your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.

This is a period of time also known as a time of historical trends where we can observe the signs of the times by what is taking place in human history.

DAN 12:4 “But as for you, Daniel, conceal these words and seal up the book until the end of time; many will go back and forth, and knowledge will increase.”

1. Many will go back and forth, which means the increase on travel. 2. Knowledge shall increase.
It could be the last days for a client nation before it can be destroyed because of what is taking place within the nation.

2. It can also refer to the last days before the Lord comes back sometimes called the “End Times.”

Last Days can refer to the restoration of Jerusalem; ISA 2:2  Now it will come about that In the last days, The mountain of the house of the Lord Will be established as the chief of the mountains, And will be raised above the hills; And all the nations will stream to it.

Last Days can also refer to the Tribulation period, JER 23:20,  “The anger of the Lord will not turn back Until He has performed and carried out the purposes of His heart; In the last days you will clearly understand it.

Last Days = the greatest world war in all of human history; EZE 38:16  and you will come up against My people Israel like a cloud to cover the land. It will come about in the last days that I shall bring you against My land, in order that the nations may know Me when I shall be sanctified through you before their eyes, O Gog.”

This is when Russia, China, Turkey, Libya, Ethiopia, Germany, Iran and many other Arab nations as well, come against Israel, a nation no larger than the state of New Jersey, and they all will be defeated by the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Last days can also refer to the time when ISRAEL returns to the Lord as stated in HOS 3:5 Afterward the sons of Israel will return and seek the Lord their God and David their king; and they will come trembling to the Lord and to His goodness in the last days.

The last days also speak of a time of revival for God’s people as in ACT 2:17 And it shall be in the last days,’ God says, ‘That I will pour forth of My Spirit upon all mankind; And your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, And your young men shall see visions, And your old men shall dream dreams;

Rev22:18-19, I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God shall add to him the plagues which are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book.

PRO 30:5-6, Every word of God is tested; He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him. Do not add to His words Lest He reprove you, and you be proved a liar.

The post-canon period of the Church-age, which is after the  Church-age began in Act 2 to this present time, is the only era in which no biblical prophecy will be fulfilled.

The only prophetic events concerning the Church-age are its beginning, which was prophesied by Christ, JOH 14:16-17,MAT 16:18, JOH 16:7-15, ACT 1:5.

MAT 16:18 “And I also say to you that you are Peter [petros-little rock or small stone], and upon this rock [Petra – the huge rock or boulder referring to the great revelation that the Lord was the Messiah, the Rock] I will build My church; and the gates of Hades shall not overpower it.

This was taken from Peter’s divinely inspired confession of Jesus as “the Christ, the Son of the living God.” (MAT 16:16-17).

MAT 16:18 “And I also say to you that you are Peter [petros-little rock or small stone], and upon this rock [Petra – the huge rock or boulder referring to the great revelation that the Lord was the Messiah, the Rock] I will build My church; and the gates of Hades shall not overpower it.

ACT 1:5  for John baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”

The next prophetic event is its termination at the Rapture or the resurrection of the Church, 1TH 4:16‑18; 1CO 15:51‑58,JAM 5:7‑8.

That last phrase “He loved His own to the end” reveals that the Lord Jesus Christ was perfect” and therefore in His perfection, also known as His impeccability, He was totally honest, stabilized and fulfilled what JOH 14:6 says.

HEB 13:8  Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today, yes and forever.

The same Lord who remains the same yesterday and today, and forever, also in HEB 13:5 said “I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you,”

HEB 6:18 – we are told it is impossible for Him God to lie.

His hour is a reference to the cross and really it is His hour of victory in the angelic conflict, JOH 12:23; JOH 17:1, MAR 14:41.

JOH 12:23, And Jesus answered them, saying, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.

JOH 17:1 “These things Jesus spoke; and lifting up His eyes to heaven, He said, “Father, the hour has come; glorify Thy Son, that the Son may glorify Thee,”

MAR 14:41  And He came the third time, and said to them [Peter, James and John], “Are you still sleeping and taking your rest? It is enough; the hour has come; behold, the Son of Man is being betrayed into the hands of sinners.

He knew it because of the fact that in His humanity, not in His deity, but in His humanity,  He studied passages like PSA 41:9  “Even

My close friend, in whom I trusted, who ate My bread, has lifted up his heel against Me.” - fulfilled in Luke 22:47-48.

Luke 22:47-48“>LUK 22:47-48, While He was still speaking, behold, a multitude {came,} and the one called Judas, one of the twelve, was preceding them; and he approached Jesus to kiss Him. But Jesus said to him, “Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?”

He even knew the amount which the betrayer would receive for the betrayal as well as what that amount would be used for.

Zec 10-11 – predict and prophecy the betrayal of Judas to our Lord, the amount Judas would receive for the betrayal, the thirty pieces of silver and what the money would be used for called purchasing a burial lot called the “Potter’s Field.”
Insight with the doctrine concerning that our Lord knew that He was going to be betrayed by one of His own.

Our Lord also knew that His betrayer would receive thirty pieces of Silver for His betrayal.

ZEC 11:12-13, And I said to them, “If it is good in your sight, give {me} my wages; but if not, never mind!” So they weighed out thirty {shekels} of silver as my wages. Then the Lord said to me, “Throw it to the potter, {that} magnificent price at which I was valued by them.” So I took the thirty   {shekels} of silver and threw them to the potter in the house of the Lord.

He knew what the thirty pieces of silver would be used for which is to buy a lot from was is known as the potter’s field to bury the dead.

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