The Destiny of the Three Great Divisions of Humanity

1 Corinthians

The Destiny of the Three Great Divisions of Humanity

March 12th, 1974

1 Corinthians 10:32

Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God:
Print Sermon
Downloadable Media

  
Play Audio

Show References:
ON OFF

SCHOOL OF THE PROPHETS:

THE DESTINY OF THE THREE GREAT DIVISIONS OF HUMANITY

Dr. W. A. Criswell

1 Corinthians 10:32

3-12-74

 

Now the title of the message tonight, the lecture tonight, is The Destiny of the Three Great Divisions of Humanity. In 1 Corinthians 10:32, Paul divides all the human race into three parts: the Jew, the Gentile, and the church. And we are going to take these three divisions of humanity and follow them through.

After Christ, after the descent of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost [Acts 2:1-42], there was a new thing in human history: the church. The church was a mustērion, a secret that God kept in His heart until He revealed it unto His apostles [Ephesians 3:1-10]. Up until then, God divided the human race into Jew and Gentile. After Pentecost, the human race is divided into Jew, Gentile, and church [1 Corinthians 10:32]. The Jew dates from the call of Abraham [Genesis 12:1-2] to the end of the age; the Gentiles from Adam [Genesis 4:1], to the end of the age and the church from the days of the gospel in the Acts [Acts 1:8] to the end of the age.

So we take first the Jew. Like the Gulf Stream he has been distinct in human history in his laws, in his habits, in his customs, and in his religion. When Moses on the back side of the Midian desert looked at the bush that burned unconsumed, he was looking at God’s type of the Jewish nation [Exodus 3:1-8]. The golden age of Israel, in the days of Solomon, of David, were long centuries before the days of Socrates or Plato or Aristotle, and they were hundreds and hundreds of years before Herodotus wrote the first history.

 

The divine appointed mission of Israel is fourfold.

  • One: God chose them to be a witness to the unity of God amidst the world of universal idolatry [Deuteronomy 6:4; Mark 12:29].
  • Second: God chose them to illustrate to the nations the greater blessedness of serving the one true God [Deuteronomy 6:5; Mark 12:30].
  • Third: God chose them to receive and to preserve the divine oracles and revelations of God in this blessed Book [Romans 9:4].
  • And fourth: God chose them to be the progenitors of the Savior Messiah of the world [Romans 9:5].

 

And what we have in the revelation of the true God, in the oracles of God [Romans 3:2], the testimony of the Lord [John 20:30-31], and in the birth of the Savior of the world [Matthew 1:18-23; Luke 2:11]; all of that God chose to bring to pass through the Jewish nation.

Now we speak of the future of Israel. Why are we interested in Israel? Why is any man who preaches the Bible deeply interested in Israel? And I say, who deeply preaches the Bible because I have had learned denominational members of this church who will answer people who ask them, “Why are we interested in Israel?” and his reply would be, “It is because of a theological aberration on the part of our pastor. We are no more interested in Israel, nor God is no more interested in Israel than anybody else. Nor do they have any greater place in the future of the program of God than any other people.”

Well, why is the pastor then—let’s say it like that—so interested in Israel? They are so small a people. They have such a tiny land. There’s about two and a half million of them over there. There are more than that in the metroplex of Dallas and Fort Worth. They are not as large as the metropolitan area in which you’re now seated, and they’re no bigger over there in land than the size of a big Texas county. But though they are so small in even the name, when you put Israel’s name over there, you stick it out into the Mediterranean Sea; the country is not big enough even to put the name on the land where they are. Now, the little country, though so small and so tiny, yet you have it in the headline of practically every paper every day all over the world.

Why this profound interest in Israel? Well, there are several reasons. Here’s one. Out of Israel the world’s three great living religions came: Judaism, Christianity, and Mohammedanism. And the shrines of those three religions you’ll find in the holy places of Palestine.

Second: in that place God became incarnate. You could go to ten thousand towns and cities and villages all over this earth, but there is only one Bethlehem where God became flesh [Matthew 1:20-2:1]. And in that place Christ is coming back. The prophet Zechariah, in the fourteenth chapter of his prophecy, said, “And His feet shall stand in that day, upon the Mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east” [Zechariah 14:4]. And anybody in the earth who had any interest in God at all could not escape a profound interest in Israel.

Third: in that land the last battle is to be fought [Revelation 16:13-16]. I wish we had time to go through the Scriptures, because I have Scripture passages for all of this, but there’s no opportunity at all. In that land the last battle is to be fought.

The last time I was in Israel, which is February of last year, the last time I was there, while I was lecturing on the top of the Mount of Megiddo, those phantom jets were roaring overhead. And the thunder and the roar of those tremendous bombers brought a realization of the terror and the horror that will attend the ultimate consummation of the age.

Following through the chronology of the Bible—and we’re going to do that in the last lecture—following through the chronology of the Revelation, the Apocalypse, our Lord will descend, in the nineteenth chapter of the Book of the Revelation, in the battle of Armageddon, in the battle of Esdraelon [Revelation 19:11-21]. We are interested in the land because God is going to draw together the millions and the millions of the earth in that place.

According to the Apocalypse, it’ll be a lying, deceiving spirit that brings the people there [Revelation 16:13-16]. And according to the Apocalypse, the army of the East—and I presume that refers to the army of China—the army of the East alone numbers two hundred million men, just one army that is brought together in Palestine in that last great battle of the day of God [Revelation 9:16]. So awesome is the carnage of that awful war that the blood is deep, up to the bridles of the horses, for one thousand, six hundred furlongs [Revelation 14:20]. That is two hundred miles. From Bozrah, according to Isaiah [Isaiah 63:1-4], up to Megiddo is exactly two hundred miles. It is unbelievable. It is awful. It is almost unimaginable the vast slaughter of this great last battle which will be fought in Palestine.

Isn’t it a strange thing that our attentions are gathered there? I went up—when I start doing this, we’re not going to get through the first page!—I was invited by President Nixon to go up to the White House for a discussion and a briefing, an exchange of ideas, on the foreign policy of the United States government. And we spent there about two hours, among other things, with Henry Kissinger. So as he was describing the foreign policy, its intended purpose and its implementation on the part of the present American government, I asked him about Israel and our attitude toward Israel and the possibility of war in the Middle East. And this briefly is what he said. He said, “There will be no confrontation with Russia or any of the great powers of the world and the United States in Vietnam, or in the Orient, or anywhere in that part of the world. But,” he said, “there is a distinct confrontation any day between the atomic power of the United States and the atomic power of Russia in the Middle East.” I think Henry Kissinger is correct. He’s not speaking as student of the Bible. He’s just talking as a politician, as an ambassador, and as a statesman. When we have this ultimate and final confrontation between the nations of the earth, the atomic powers of the globe, it’s going to be in Israel; it’s going to be in Palestine; it’s going to be at Armageddon; that’s what the Book says. That’s what the politician says who has no idea, I presume, that the Book says anything about it.

Why are we interested in Palestine? Because of the great religions that come out of it, because of the incarnation of God [Matthew 1:20-2:1] and His return there [Zechariah 14:4], because of the last great battle of the Lord that’ll be fought there [Revelation 16:13-16], and fourth: here a family feud has continued that has colored the history of the world. The descendants of Isaac, that you call the Jew, and the descendants of Ishmael, that we call the Arab—or as a man was talking to me this afternoon, the “AY-rab”—I want to illustrate if I can, whether we get through this discussion or not, I want to illustrate that bitterness between the Arab and the Jew.

Dr. Duke McCall, who was then the executive secretary of the Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention, from which position he went to be president of the Southern Seminary—Dr. Duke McCall and I, 1950, made a journey around the world. And while we were in Israel, the two missions to the Arabs and to the Jews, the two missions were amalgamated, because after the War of 1948 so much of what had been Arab territory and Arab missions was now placed in Israel and became a Jewish mission. So for about a week we lived with those missionaries, went around with them, rode around with them, visited with them, talked to them, preached with them, sat down at social engagements with them. And when the week was over, I said to Dr. McCall, “There is no such thing, no possibility, as this mission staying together. I think it’s going to blow up and blow wide open.” And the reason I thought so was this: I don’t care the occasion, there was no such occasion that preempted it, obviated it, I don’t care the occasion—it was social, it was gracious, it was shaking hands, it was a tea, it was a brunch, it was a coffee, it was a service, it was a preaching hour, it was an evangelistic hour—I don’t care what the service was or what the convocation was, it wasn’t a few minutes until you could sense the jumping at the throat of those two missions that now were amalgamated, forced together in Israel.

The missionaries of the Southern Baptist people that had been sent to the Arab and the mission of the Southern Baptist people that had been sent to the Jew were as violently colored as the Arab and the Jew himself, and it wasn’t but a few months until the mission in Israel blew wide open. The thing tore itself apart. And since the Jew had the Israel, and the Arab was forced into the government, the folks that came home were our missionaries to the Arabs. Now, I use that as an illustration to show you how deep, deep, deep, deep, deep is that bitter feud between the Arab and the Jew. It’s not just between them, but even an American Southern Baptist Christian missionary that gets over there, it isn’t long until he’s either pro-Arab if he’s with an Arab or he’s pro-Jew if he’s with a Jew. That feud’s been going on for thousands and thousands of years; for four thousand years!

Now fifth: here the conjunction of three great continents of the earth are to be seen. Africa is here, Asia is there, and Europe is there. It’s literally the great crossroads of the earth, and those continents represent two-thirds of the land mass of the earth, practically all of the population, and practically all of the oil.

I had a man ask me about a week ago, “Pastor, why in the earth do you think it is that God should have put these vast oil deposits over there? Why?” Well, of course, I’m not God and I’m not able to answer a question like that in all of its detail, but I just point out one thing: that is a part of the drawing of the nations of the world in the great ultimate war of Armageddon. That’s a part of it [Revelation 16:13-16].

Now about this Jew and the Jewish people; God promised the land of Palestine to the seed of Abraham forever, forever [Genesis 13:14-17]. The land belongs to him. Now I’m going to take time to read one passage of Scripture, Psalm 105, Psalm 105, verses 8 through 11. Out of a multitude, out of a multitude of passages, I take time to read this one. The land of Palestine belongs to Abraham, to Isaac, to Jacob, and to their seed forever. It belongs to the Jew. Now I’m going to start reading Psalm 105:8-11:

 

God hath remembered His covenant for ever, the word which He commanded to a thousand generations.

Which covenant He made with Abraham, and His oath unto Isaac;

And confirmed the same unto Jacob for a law, and to Israel for an everlasting covenant:

Saying, Unto thee will I give the land of Canaan, the lot of your inheritance.

[Psalm 105:8-11]

 

Now it could not be placed in stronger, firmer language than that. “God remembers His covenant forever, which covenant He commanded to a thousand generations; which covenant He made unto Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob” [Psalm 105:8-9].  And Jacob’s name is Israel, “For an everlasting covenant, saying, Unto thee do I give the land of Canaan” [Psalm 105:10-11]. The land of Palestine belongs to the Jew!

Somebody asked somebody in the congregation—now this is a little conversation here, doesn’t involve me—but somebody asked this somebody, “Why are you so pro-Jew?” And the answer to this guy was, “From listening to the pastor of the First Baptist Church in Dallas.” I have no lot or parcel with Jewish people as such. I am an Englishman by name, and my forefathers came from the British Isles. I have no part in me of Jew whatsoever. Well, how is it that I am this way? From preaching the Word of God, that’s all! If I preach the Word of God, this is what I preach: the title to the land is unconditional. It is without stipulation. Their residence in the land is with stipulation. God said to them, “If you disobey Me, I am going to cast you out and scatter you among the nations of the earth” [Deuteronomy 28:63-64]. But there’s no stipulation, there’s no condition to the title deed of the land. It belongs to God, and God gave it to the Jew. It belongs to him [Psalm 105:8-11].

Now talking about the future of Israel; they will never cease to be a nation, whether in the land or dispersed. They’ll always be a people, forever! I’m going to take time to read another passage. I just can’t, I just can’t pass these passages by. “Thus saith the Lord”—now, this is in Jeremiah 31, starting at verse 35:

Thus saith the Lord, which giveth the sun for a light by day, and the ordinances of the moon and of the stars for light by night . . . The Lord of hosts is His name:

If those ordinances depart from before Me, saith the Lord, then the seed of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before Me for ever.

Thus saith the Lord; If heaven can be measured, and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, I also will cast off all the seed of Israel for all that they have done, saith the Lord.

[Jeremiah 31:35-37]

What God says there is: “As long as there is a sun that shines in the day and a moon that shines in the night, just so long will there be a nation of Israel before Me.” Now, that’s a long, long time. I tell you, if a guy sat down and waited for the sun to burn out, he’d sit down until he was growed to the thing he was a-sittin’ on. Isn’t that right? Isn’t that right? I don’t know how long that is.

But that’s how long, God says, “There will be a nation of Israel before Me.” Do you notice that word in Matthew 24:35, where the Lord says, “Verily, I say unto you, this generation shall not pass away till all these things, all these things be fulfilled?” [Matthew 24:34-35]. Now the word there is genea, and you’ll use it scientifically in botany and zoology as the genea, the kind, the species. That’s the way the word genea is used scientifically. So it refers to the generation, the kind, the species, the race. And the Lord says, “Until I get back, until I come back, that Jew will be here. He will still be here. He will never be absolved, absorbed; and the Gentiles will never swallow him up or destroy him. He will be here when I come back again.” That’s what God says [Matthew 24:34-35].

Now let me expatiate on that as I do sometimes. When I read about these folks in the Bible, I read about the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Moabites, and the Jebusites, and the termites—no, I got off there—all the rest of those “-ites.” Now I want you to tell me, you answer me, did you ever see anybody, who ever saw anybody, who ever saw anybody, who ever heard of anybody, who ever saw of anybody, who ever saw a Hittite, or Jebusite, or an Amorite, or any other “-ite” back there? Did you ever see anybody who ever saw anybody who ever saw one of them? Did you? Did you?

But my brother, you come with me, and every one of these department stores downtown is owned by a Jew. We’ve got thousands of them in the city of Dallas, and you’ll find him all over the whole earth. Now isn’t that something? Isn’t that amazing? That’s God. God said, “When I come back he will be here; you will see him” [Matthew 24:34-35]. That’s a sign of the truth of the Word of God. “The flower fadeth, the grass withereth; but the word of our Lord shall stand forever” [Isaiah 40:8]. “The Jew will be here,” said God, “when I come back,” and right there he is.

Another thing about them: they will return to the land in unbelief. Ezekiel 22, Ezekiel 36: they’ll go back to the land in unbelief [Ezekiel 22:17-19, 36:24-28]. Isn’t that an amazing thing that is coming to pass in your day and mine? There were centuries, centuries, centuries after 70 AD when there were no Jews in Palestine. By law, by Roman government, by governments that succeeded Rome, they were interdicted from ever living in Palestine and certainly from ever living in Jerusalem. When I was over there in Jerusalem last time, I saw some ancient etchings of Jews who were on the Mount of Olives looking down into the Holy Place, weeping many tears. They were interdicted from entering, even putting a foot in the Holy City. There were hundreds of years after 70 AD, there were centuries that there were no Jews in Palestine, or just a little tiny handful at the most.

But God said he would go back home: “He will go back home. He will go back home. He will go back home.” God said it! [Ezekiel 22:17-19, 36:24-28].  And on the fifteenth day of May in 1948, and most of us are old enough here to remember that, on the fifteenth day of May in 1948, there was a new nation born, and guess its name—it was named Israel, Israel. Isn’t that unbelievable? Would you ever thought it? But God said so, and there that nation is today.

And they are there in unbelief. If I were to characterize a Jew over there in Palestine today, I’d say he’s an atheist and at the most an agnostic. It’s a little tiny minority over there in Palestine today, in Israel today that is religious. There’s a religious party, an orthodox party, but outside of them the great mass of the Jewish people there are atheistic. They are materialistic. They’re secular. They’re Jews only in the sense of their race, and of their habits, and customs, and traditions. Isn’t that an astonishing thing? But that’s what God says: “They’ll go back in unbelief.”

They’re going to rebuild that temple. In the ninth chapter of the Book of Daniel [Daniel 9:26], in the second chapter of 2 Thessalonians [2 Thessalonians 2:4], the eleventh chapter of the Apocalypse [Revelation 11:19], the temple is rebuilt. When you go over there today you’ll see the Mosque of Omar, the Mosque of the Dome of the Rock on Mt. Moriah in Jerusalem. That’s what you’ll see there now.

The United States government gave the king of Jordan, gave King Hussein twenty million dollars, and several million dollars of that money went to make that gold dome on top of the Mosque of Omar and to repair those beautiful stained-glass windows. That’s very fine, but I can tell the American government, “You’re just throwing money down the drain.” That wouldn’t change the American government, because that’s all they do anyway, throw money down the drain, but that’s what they did over there. Why? Because the day is coming—I don’t know when, it could be soon—the day is coming when every stone in that Mosque of Omar is going to be either blown up or carried off and put in some unclean place, because that is the place where the second temple is going to be rebuilt. It’s going to be there, and they’re going to reinstitute their religious worship of God [Ezekiel 40-48]. Their final restoration of the land is most emphatic [Amos 9:15].

Now what is the future of Israel? They will be converted, accepting their Messiah.

  • You read this in Romans 11:25-29.  
  • In Zechariah chapter 12, chapter 13, and chapter 14 [Zechariah 12:10-11, 13:1-9, 14:20-21].  
  • In Ezekiel chapter 11 and chapter 37 [Ezekiel 11:17-19, 37:21-28].  
  • In Jeremiah chapter 32 [Jeremiah 32:37-42].
  • And Matthew 23: 39. They are going to be converted.
  • The whole nation is going to be converted [Romans 11:26-29].
  • The Bible speaks of it as “a nation born in a day” [Isaiah 66:8], and they’re going to accept their Messiah.
  • They’re going to look on Him whom they pierced and they’re going to mourn for Him as a man mourns for his only son [Zechariah 12:10].
  • And they’re going to ask Him, “Where did you get those wounds in Your hands and in Your feet?” And He is going to say, “I got them in the house of My friends [Zechariah 13:6].  My own people crucified Me.”
  • And they’re going to turn to the Lord in a day, in a day. Israel’s going to be converted, going to be saved [Romans 11:26].  That’s at the consummation of the age. And Paul says, “Some of them are being converted now,” for he himself was a Jew, he said, “and I accept the Lord” [Romans 11:1-5].

 

Did you know, I’m looking around here, did you know some of the finest leaders in this church are Jewish people? Did you know that? We counted them the other day. There are about thirty-two wonderful Jewish people in this church who are leaders. I see one of my deacons who is a Jew; Monk Harris, just let us stand up a second, if you don’t mind, just stand up. There’s a Jew, and he’s one of my deacons. God love him. I’m trying to see Ed Hecht. I guess he’s not here. Ed’s not here. He’s one of the leaders in our Junior division, and Ed is a Jew. You’d never know these people were Jews as such. They are marvelous Christians. They’re wonderful people that love God and love us. And all through the centuries, ever since the days of the apostles, you will find Jews who have accepted the true Messiah, and they’re just marvelous servants of Christ. Think of the day when all of them are saved [Romans 11:26]. Oh, what a day, what a day!

Now I have to close this section of it. Israel’s judgment will be before the millennium, described in Ezekiel 20:33-38. No one will enter the millennium unsaved. All who enter the millennium will be saved. Every Gentile, and these described in the twenty-fifth chapter of Matthew, at the convocation of all the Gentiles—King James Version translates it “nations” [Matthew 25:32-40]; the word is “Gentiles”—at the great Gentile judgment, the only ones that will enter the millennium are those that are saved.

Now there’s going to be an Israel judgment, an Israeli judgment, a Jewish judgment, described in Ezekiel 20:33-38. And those that do not accept the Messiah will be cut off. They’ll be lost [Ezekiel 20:38]. But those that accept the Lord—and the great host of the nation will—they will enter the millennium, and we’ll be together with our Lord, reigning, as the Book says, on this earth [Revelation 5:9-10].

Well, the Gentiles, we’re going to skip over them; only four billion of them in world, so we’ll just let them take care of themselves. We’re going to talk about the church now, and we’re going to do it rapidly—have to because we’ve got five minutes. We’re going to talk about the church.

All right, what the church is not: it is not Israel under another name. I tell you, if you ever let somebody persuade you that Israel is the church, and the church is Israel under another name, just take your Bible and throw it away, because it will be a jumble of confused inanity to you.

That’s why the liberal, whether he’s in the pulpit, in the seminary, in the college, in the school, or anywhere else, that’s why the liberal will finally come to the conclusion that the Bible is a jumble of un-understandable, meaningless words, and sentences, and paragraphs, and chapters, and verses. And they just throw it away, and go to talking about—and then all the things that they teach and talk and preach about: race relations, capital and labor, peace and war, ghettos, community, reformation, getting everybody out to vote—man, when you turn aside from the Word of God, you’ve got to talk about something if you’re going to keep your job in the church, so they just talk about all that stuff ad infinitum, ad nauseum. And the reason is very simple: when you turn aside from letting the Bible say what it says, it is absolutely inane.

Now let’s take the Bible that I hold in my hand. They’re all practically alike. Let’s take the Bible I hold in my hand. I’m up here in Isaiah. So I’ve got a big caption up here: “God’s mercy to the church, God’s mercy to the church.” So I look down here and I expect to read about the church. I’ve got more sense than to expect that in Isaiah because over there in the third chapter of Ephesians Paul says the church was a mustērion. It was a secret kept in the heart of God until God chose to reveal it to His apostles [Ephesians 3:1-11]. So when a fellow says he’s looking at the church in the Old Testament, he’s doing something God says isn’t so! So when I open my Bible and read “God’s mercy to the church,” why, if I didn’t have any sense and wasn’t taught in the Book, why, I would expect to read about the church there. Well, what do I read? I read about Israel here. I read about Israel, yet the caption is up here, “God’s mercy to the church.” Now that will make a jumble, a jigsaw puzzle out of your Bible that you will never be able to put together; the church is not Israel. Israel is one thing, and the church is something else. And I repeat: the church was a secret that the world never saw. The prophets never saw. There are no prophecies about the church in the Old Testament. It was a secret God kept in His heart until He revealed it to His apostles! [Ephesians 3:1-11].

Now when I keep Israel as Israel and the church as the church, I have all kinds of marvelous understandings of the Bible. It begins to fall in place, and it begins to make sense. The church is not the kingdom. Now isn’t that amazing?

The Catholic would have us believe that when you join the church you’re in the kingdom, and they make them synonymous. There is no such thing as that in the Bible. The kingdom was rejected. It was announced by John the Baptist [Matthew 3:2], it was announced by Jesus [Matthew 4:17], but it was rejected, and the King is gone! [Acts 1:9-10]. He is in exile. And how in the earth are you going to have a kingdom without a King? Your King is not here; He is up there in glory. He is gone away until His enemies be made His footstool [Hebrews 10:12-13]. The church is never the kingdom in Scripture. The church is called a house. It’s called a temple. It’s called a body. Christ is the head of the church [Ephesians 5:23]. He is never spoken of as the King of the church. You won’t find any such nomenclature as that in the Word of the Lord, for the kingdom is one thing and the church is another. The relation between Christ and His church is as a bride and a Bridegroom [Matthew 25:1-2], not as a King and the kingdom. They’re two different things.

Well, what is the church, then? The church is a mustērion [Ephesians 3:1-11]. It’s a—and I hate to use the word “mystery” because to us the word “mystery” is an enigma, something that you can’t understand—the word mustērion, which is actually made up, spelled out in English “mystery,” mustērion, “mystery,” the word in Greek refers to a secret that is made known just to the initiated.

For example, those mystery religions, the Eleusinian and all the rest of those mysteries, they were religions where the man knew of them only as they were revealed to him. He was initiated. It’s like the Masonic Lodge. The man on the outside doesn’t know, but the man on the inside is initiated. The mysteries of the lodge are made known to him. Well, the word “mystery” is used like that in the Bible exclusively, never as an enigma but always as a secret in God’s heart. Now the kingdom is no mystery. The Old Testament prophets described it from beginning to end in glowing terms. The mystery of the church was revealed to the apostles [Ephesians 3:1-11]. That the Gentiles would be saved is no mystery; why, [Hosea 2: 14-23] and the other prophets talk about it. The mystery is that there was to be a new creation: the body of our Lord composed of Jew and Gentile [Ephesians 3:1-11].

I have another minute, and I’m going to stop if I’m talking in the middle of it. The church is a called-out body, an ekklēsia. It is the body of Christ [Ephesians 1:23]. It is the Bride of Christ [Ephesians 5:25]. It originated in the side of our Lord, according to the fifth chapter of Ephesians; as Eve was taken out of the side of Adam, so the church was taken out of the side of our Lord [Ephesians 5:30]. She was born in the blood, and tears, and suffering, and death of the Son of God. “She is bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh” [Genesis 2:23].

Paul said, “This is a great mustērion; but I speak concerning Christ and His church” [Ephesians 5:32]. Born out of the side of our blessed Lord [Ephesians 5:30], her mission is to evangelize the whole world. Her destiny is to be caught up, the old Anglo-Saxon word, to be raptured [1 Thessalonians 4:16-17], and there in heaven she’ll be at the bēma of Christ, the judgment of Christ, to receive the deeds we’ve done [2 Corinthians 5:10]. And then we’ll sit down at the marriage supper of the Lamb. Our Lord said, “I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine till I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom” [Matthew 26:29]. What is He talking about? He is talking about the day when He sits down with us at the marriage supper of the Lamb, and we eat and we drink together with our Lord [Revelation 19:6-9]. Isn’t that all right? Amen.