We have been studying prayer here at Grace Bible Study for some time now and are starting to think about moving on to something different. I started this study with the statement, “right division of the Bible applies to every subject in scripture”. Paul’s pattern for proper Bible study clears up an immeasurable amount of confusion. Prayer is a subject that comes into proper perspective when studied properly. We have been taught in denominational Christianity to pray Israel’s promises and to expect Israel’s earthly answers. The Bible cannot be clearer that Israel’s blessings all relate to the earth and the promises that relate to the body of Christ are heavenly and spiritual in nature. Scripture tells the body of Christ we already have “all spiritual blessings in heavenly places” (Eph 1:3) which is where God already considers us seated, (Eph2:6) but we can’t help but want what God only promised to Israel. The “name it and claim it” mentality and the foolish idea of “pleading the blood” sound plausible because the preacher is quoting scripture as he misleads those not willing to “study to show themselves approved unto God.” (II Tim 2:15) Prayer in scripture is always according to God’s will. I love the story of Elijah praying to hold back the rain, and God answers this prayer. How many people actually know that God had specifically told Israel that one of the ways he would specifically judge them for not following the law was to hold back the rain? (Deut 11:16-17) Elijah’s prayer was answered because he was praying according to God’s revealed will, and God reveals his will to us in the Bible. Today we must still pray according to God’s will, and God has revealed his will to us in Paul’s 13 epistles. The contrast between Pauline prayer and how Jesus taught Israel to pray is unquestionable. If you want the answer to your unanswered prayers, you should study Paul’s prayer life because Paul didn’t pray like you do. In Herbert Lockyer’s book “All the prayers in the Bible,” he quotes E. W. Moore on page 238 with this statement; “it is a remarkable feature of Paul’s prayers that they are all conceived on the highest plane of spiritual living. Temporal matters, though they most certainly have their place in intercession, are not prominent-indeed are scarcely contemplated here.” Both Lockyer and Moore are perplexed at the drastic change in the prayer pattern we see in Paul’s life. Paul, after asking God to remove his thorn in the flesh was taught that prayer has changed in the dispensation of grace. How much clearer these men could have understood prayer if they first understood how to rightly divide their Bible. This was perplexing to them, but it’s as clear as day to someone who understands that every subject in scripture must be rightly divided to be properly understood. Our prayer life is a very personal thing. There is a very clear reason Christians struggle with unanswered prayer, and the answer is clearly revealed by your Apostle Paul. You will not learn this vastly important fact from anyone that does not rightly divide God’s prophecy program from God’s mystery program. Unfortunately, leaving Israel’s prayer promises to Israel does not preach well.
Some time back I had a conversation with an individual about our Apostle Paul. This person stated to me that is sounded like I was worshipping Paul. It is interesting how relevant scripture really is. Not long after Paul established churches he dealt with this exact resistance. People questioned Paul’s position and authority throughout his ministry. People today are still questioning Paul’s ministry and authority. Let me be perfectly clear, we worship the Lord alone. We are nothing without his love, mercy, and grace that he freely gave to us. Let me also be perfectly clear again, the vast majority of everything we know about God’s love, mercy and grace toward us we learn from Paul’s epistles. Without Paul’s epistles you as a Gentile are little but a line in the Abrahamic Covenant that you would be blessed THROUGH ISRAEL. Once Israel rejected their Messiah Ephesians chapter 2 is clear that we had NO HOPE because we were without God and strangers from the covenants of promise. Regardless of this, people today still put themselves in the New Covenant that was so clearly promised to Israel. Paul’s position and authority are in question today for the same reasons that they were questioned 2000 years ago. When Jesus revealed the mystery information to Paul it made Satan look like a fool.
1Co 2:7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:
Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.
The mystery was “hid in God” as Ephesians 3:9 so clearly states before the world began. (see also Rom 16:25) Paul revealed that the crucifixion actually opened up Grace to ALL. (Rom 11:25) The mystery revealed that everyone can be saved entirely apart from works by solely trusting in the finished work of the cross. (1 Cor 15:1-4) Satan HATES the mystery because the mystery shows Satan to be a fool. Satan will do anything in his power to obscure, confuse and deny the teaching of the mystery. How else can you explain the fact that scripture teaches the mystery so clearly and yet Christianity knows little to nothing about it? The fact remains that Paul himself said “I magnify mine office” (Rom 11:13) Paul could say this because he received his office directly from Jesus Christ. (Gal 1:12) Israel had 12 Apostles for the twelve tribes of Israel. We have our one Apostle for the one body of Christ. Scripture tells us if any other gospel is preached besides the one Paul preached let him be accursed. (Gal 1:8-9) Why, because Paul was the first one to preach the gospel of the grace of God (Acts 20:24) Christianity is so busy defending their denominational position they are not willing to let the Bible speak for itself. The Bible tells you to rightly divide it. The Bible also tells you to be pleasing to God in this dispensation you must follow the Apostle Paul. Why, because Jesus sent Paul to you. I give Paul his due authority as my Apostle whom Jesus my Savior sent to me. Why would Jesus need to send Paul to me? Because scripture is clear that Jesus’ ministry was to Israel.
Steve Schoenberger is a student of the Bible and the teacher at Abundant Grace Bible Fellowship, A Mid-Acts Dispensational Bible church teaching the Bible rightly divided according the revelation of the mystery delivered to the Apostle Paul