This entry is part of 50 in the series article 26

(Acts 10; 11:1-18) 

IN our previous discourse we traced the unfolding of 
the scheme of redemption from the creation to the 
giving of the law at Mt. Sinai In this discourse we 
will trace the same from the giving of the law through 
Moses to the admission of Cornelius and his household 
into the church. With the admission of the Gentiles 
into the household of faith, the plan of the ages was 
perfected. Soon afterwards the complete written "Word 
was given to man. 

II. The Jewish Dispensation. The giving of the 
law upon Mount Sinai. The old covenant renewed 
through the mediation of Moses. Written upon tables 
of stone (Gal. 3:19; Deut. 5:5; Ex. 21:18; Deut. 5: 

Why was the law added? (Gal. 3:19.) It was 
added because of the transgressions of the people, until 
the seed, or Christ, should come (Gal. 3 : 16 ; Gal. 3 : 24, 
25). It was the schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ. 

The Jews were organized into a commonwealth, and 
given a code of laws. This system of law, made by 
the Almighty and given to the people of Israel through 
Moses, came to an end with the establishment of the 
new institution on Pentecost (Col. 2:14). 

The tabernacle was the institution of worship dur- 
ing the Jewish dispensation, previous to the erection 
of the temple. While the Jews were a wandering peo- 
ple, they needed a portable institution of worship. The 
tabernacle served this purpose. "When they became 
firmly settled in Canaan, the temple was built during 
the reign of Solomon. After the captivity, synagogues 
were erected for places of worship. 

The tabernacle was a type of the church (Heb. 9). 
The outer court typified the world. It contained the 
altar of burnt-offering, which typified faith in Jesus 
Christ as the Son of God and the sin-offering of the 
ages; and also the laver, before the entrance to the 
Holy Place, which typified the ordinance of baptism. 
The Holy Place typified the church on earth. It con- 
tained the table of the showbread, which typified the 
communion; the golden candlestick, which typified the 
word of God; and the altar of incense, which typified 
prayer. The Holy of Holies was a type of heaven — 
and of it we can not now speak particularly (Heb. 9: 

The rule of the judges, followed by the setting up 
of the kingdom. The reigns of Saul, David and Sol- 
omon. The division of the kingdom and subsequent 
decline and fall of the Jewish commonwealth bring us 
down to 

3. The gospel in prophecy. The prophets occupy 
the major portion of the later history of Israel. They 
began to point forward to the advent of the Messiah 
and the establishment of His kingdom. This is the 
gospel in prophecy. 

Among the important facts prophesied are these: 
The character and power of the Messiah (Isa. 9:6, 7) ; 
the nature of His priesthood (Ps. 110:4) ; that He is 
to be the Son of God (Ps. 2:7); that His power and 
dominion are to be unlimited (Ps. 110:1); that His 
coming is to be heralded by a special messenger, re- 
ferring to John the Baptizer (Isa. 40:3; Mai. 3:1); 
that He is to be born in Bethlehem of Judea (Mic. 5: 
2) ; that He is to be born of a virgin (Isa. 7:14) ; 
that He is to be rejected by the Jews (Isa. 53:2, 3) ; 
that His mission is also to include the Gentiles (Isa. 
49:6) ; that He is to attest His ministry by miracles 
of mercy (Isa. 35 : 5, 6) ; that He is to be betrayed by 
one of His companions for thirty pieces of silver (Ps. 
41: 9; Zech. 11: 2) ; that He is to be scourged, pierced 
and crucified (Isa. 50:6; Zech. 12:10; Isa. 53:4-7); 
that He is to make His bed with the wicked and the 
rich in His death (Isa. 53:9) ; that His garments are 
to be parted (Ps. 22: 18) ; that He is to be resurrected 
by the power of God (Ps. 16: 8-10). The preaching of 
the gospel is also prophesied (Isa. 2:2, 3); as well 
as the establishment of the kingdom (Dan. 2:44; 9: 
24-27). Over seventy prophecies of the Old Testa- 
ment are fulfilled in the New. Thus we have a gospel 
in prophecy (1 Pet. 1:10, 11; 2 Pet. 1:21). 

This period was that of the Babylonian captivity, 
followed by the varying fortunes of the children of 
Israel until they finally were brought under the rule 
of imperial Rome. By this time we have 

4. The gospel in preparation (Heb. 2:3). The 
time was at hand for the advent of the Messiah. 
Roman roads connected every part of the civilized 
world, and transportation facilities were better than 
ever before. The Greek language, the most flexible 
of all tongues, was the recognized language of classic 
literature. The Jews were scattered among the prin- 
cipal colonies of the Mediterranean world. There was 
also a universal condition of religious unrest; the 
people were dissatisfied with their old systems of 
philosophy and mythology, and were groping about 
blindly in search of the truth. 

The appearance of John the Baptizer. His ministry 
was to herald the advent of the Christ (Matt. 3; Mark 
1:1-8; Luke 3:1-22; John 1:1-34). 

The birth of the Messiah in Bethlehem. The flight 
into Egypt. The return to Nazareth. The baptism 
in the Jordan. The personal ministry of Christ. The 
transfiguration. The crucifixion. The resurrection. 
The forty-day period, ending with the ascension. 

The personal ministry of Christ was under the 
Jewish law. He kept the law, and not ' 6 one jot nor 
tittle" passed away until all was fulfilled upon the 
cross, where, dying, He exclaimed, "It is finished," 
and the veil of the temple was rent in twain, a 
pictorial significance of the division between the old 
and the new. He fulfilled the old institution. He 
completed it, or brought it to an end. When I make 
an appointment to preach at a certain place at a 
certain time, and go there and preach at the 
appointed time, I fulfill the appointment. Christ 
came not to destroy the law nor the prophets, but 
to fulfill, or bring to an end (Matt. 5 : 17, 18) ; we 
still have the law and the prophets untaken away 
in the reading of the Old Testament, although the 
authority of the law was done away in Christ (2 
Cor. 3:14; Eom. 15:4). 

The forty days following the resurrection were 
spent by the Master with His disciples, teaching them 
the things concerning the kingdom of God (Acts 1:3). 
Then, and not until then, could He claim all authority 
in heaven and upon earth (Matt. 28:18). He com- 
manded the apostles to tarry in Jerusalem until endued 
with power from on high (Luke 24:49). He as- 
cended, and was crowned Lord of all. The coronation 
ceremonies lasted ten days. Fifty days after the 
resurrection the Spirit descended upon the apostles 
at Jerusalem, on the day of Pentecost, and the gospel 
was proclaimed as a fact (Acts 2). 

5. The gospel in fact. The three facts of the gospel 
— the death, burial and resurrection of Christ (1 Cor. 
15:1-4) — could not have been preached as facts until 
they had actually taken place. Hence Matthew, Mark, 
Luke and John merely treat of the gospel in prepa- 

The day of Pentecost, the end of the Jewish dis- 
pensation and the beginning of the Christian. Peter 
preached the first gospel sermon in the history of the 
world; three thousand Jews became the charter mem- 
bers of the church of Christ (Acts 2). 

III. The Christian Dispensation. For several 
years the gospel was preached to Jews only. The 
conversion of Cornelius marked the completion of 
the remedial system, and the consummation of the 
eternal purpose of God. Cornelius was the first Gentile 
Christian (Acts 10). Peter opened the door of the 
church to the Gentile world in the conversion of Cor- 
nelius ; and from that time Jews and Gentiles alike 
were admitted into the kingdom upon compliance with 
the Scriptural terms of pardon. 

The sunlight age was ushered in on the day of 
Pentecost. The old patriarchal era is known as the 
" starlight age"; the Jewish, as the " moonlight age"; 
the Christian, as the "sunlight age." We are living 
to-day under the gospel of Christ. The church, which 
is His body, is the spiritual institution which He left 
behind for the evangelization of the world. 

God has done all that He can do. Man must do 
the rest. The devil sought to defeat the purpose of 
God all along the way. He stirred up the wrath of 
Herod; he incited the Jews to crucify the Christ; 
but he lost in everything. He had one personal en- 
counter with God and lost; one with Christ and lost; 
he is now in a personal encounter with the church. 

There is a great campaign being waged for your 
soul. Christ is voting for you; the devil against you; 
and you, yourself, must cast the deciding vote. Which 
shall it be?
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