Three Mysteries of Ephesians
The book of Ephesians speaks of three profound spiritual mysteries. All three are based on the symbolism of the marriage between Adam and Eve, where the two become one. The three mysteries are found in chapters 1, 3, and 5. (We will cover them here in reverse order.)
I. The first mystery is bridal intimacy with Messiah. In the spirit we become one with Yeshua (Jesus) even as a husband and wife become one in body. The opportunity for human beings to become one with God, united with Him through the Messiah, is stunning. The New Covenant is a marriage covenant between us and God.
God made man in His image and said it is not good for him to be alone. In some ways God was speaking of Himself. He created us to be in fellowship with Him. As a man and woman can have intimacy only through marriage, so can we have intimacy with God only through our covenant of faith through Yeshua.
The international community of faith - the ecclesia, the kehila, the Church, the greater commonwealth of Israel - was created to be the bride of Messiah. We are His and He is ours. The bridal intimacy described in the Song of Songs is fulfilled spiritually in us through our union with God in Yeshua.
II. The second mystery is partnership between Jew and Gentile through the gospel.
From Abraham to the destruction of the Temple in 70 AD, God invested 2,000 years to lay covenant foundations of the kingdom in the nation of Israel. From the time of Yeshua to the present, God has invested 2,000 years in spreading the good news of that kingdom to all the nations of the world.
Now, since the time of the liberation of Jerusalem in 1967 (Luke 21:24), God has been bringing Israel and the Church into a new partnership and cooperation in His kingdom. The cross not only reconciles us to God, it also reconciles us to one another: White and Black, male and female, Jew and Gentile. One of the most precious expressions of our faith in Israel is the unity and love between the Messianic Jewish believers and the Palestinian Christian Arabs.
God's plan to create Israel, then the Church, and then bring them together is parallel to His creation of Adam, then Eve, and then bringing them together. And the mystery of the relationship between Israel and the Church is parallel to the mystery of our bridal intimacy with Messiah.
III. The third mystery is the restoration of Heaven and Earth in Messiah Yeshua.
Notice again that the mystery is in bringing together into one two things which are different in nature. God created both the heavens and the earth. They were "good." When man was created, they became "very good." Man's sin and Satan's rebellion ruined the creation. Through Yeshua, the influences of sin and satan will be removed, and the heavens and the earth will be restored.
In Yeshua, the heavens and the earth will be more than "very good," they will be excellent, even perfect. The ultimate plan of the kingdom of God is not for us to be transmigrated to a spiritual nirvana as disembodied spirits, but to be raised from the dead in new resurrected bodies in a restored new creation (Romans 8:18-23).
[We get a glimpse of our resurrection bodies in the appearances of Yeshua in His renewed body after His resurrection; as well as in His glorified state on the mount of transfiguration. The new creation will be a parallel restoration and renewal of the natural world as the resurrection is to the physical body.]
There will be a harmony between heaven and earth ("Your kingdom come your will be done on earth as it is in heaven" – Matthew 6:10). The last two chapters of the book of Revelation describe a glorious restoration of the first two chapters of the book of Genesis.
All these three great mysteries are found in the person of Yeshua Himself. We have bridal union with God because Yeshua is both God and man. We have unity between Jew and Gentile, because Yeshua is both head of the Church and king of Israel. We have unity between heaven and earth because Yeshua is both son of God and son of Adam.
Note: A Hebraic worldview would take these three mysteries in the 1, 3, 5 order: first an understanding of heaven and earth, then an understanding of Jew and Gentile, then an understanding of our union with God. A Greek worldview would start with the divine union, then the unity with Jew and Gentile, and end up with the restoration of heaven and earth. In both cases, the Jew-Gentile partnership is the bridge to the third mystery. As the Bible is written in both Hebrew and Greek, both of those worldviews are equally accepted before God.
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