In part one of the above topic, four out of seven covenants, millenniums, and churches were covered. The remaining three will now be discussed to pave way for an overview of all seven in part three – which will examine some trends. (For the previous message see:https://gospelofgod.church/single.php?read_essay=12 for part one. Alternatively,go to https://gospelofgod.church and click on the blog tab and peruse).
As was demonstrated, from Eden to when Jesus was born there are a total of 4,000 years. From the times of Christ to date is just over 2,000 years. However, the sequence of events in the past 2,000 years does not fit neatly into the 1,000 years pattern for reasons that will be explained.
As a quick recap, all readers who examined Larkin’s Chart from “the greatest book on dispensational truth in the world”, or from the image posted in part one, probably saw the circular markers showing Eden (Adam),Enoch, Abraham, Solomon and Jesus Christ. It is also important to note that the next marker which is at around 1,000 AD displays “dark ages”.
The Fifth Covenant, the Church of Jesus Christ
When Jesus was born in Bethlehem, the angel Gabriel outlined his mission saying: “The Lord will give him the throne of his father David, and he shall rule over the descendants of Jacob forever”(Luke 1:32). Just like David, his kingdom then was limited to Israel or the descendants of Jacob. This was yet another golden opportunity for a nation that had enjoyed the exclusivity of being a chosen people for 2,000 years, to continue with the same trend into another era. They had the scriptures, temple,God’s prophets; as well as the benefit of interaction with angels of light. Consequently,they stood out among the nations.
Jesus grew up and when time came, he was baptized and took up his mission. He sent out his disciples with instructions to go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel and not the Samaritans and gentiles (nations) such as Canaanites (Matthew 10:5). It does not mean that he could not have ministered to other nations but was respecting the boundaries that he had been given. A fact he repeated to the Canaanite woman: “I was sent but to the lost sheep of the house of Israel” (Mathew 15:24). He obviously met and blessed other people who took initiative to see him – such as the Roman Centurion (Matthew 8:5-13). However, there is no indication that he sought to minister to any of them. When he met the Samaritan woman, it was only because he had to cross Samaria to travel from Judea to Galilee – both of which were Jewish territories (John 4:3-4).
Despite this, Jesus was received with a lot of opposition and even hostility among his people. For one, he was from a humble background - a carpenter’s son, and his sibling of ordinary people they knew (Matt 13:55) - as though to prove the saying "familiarity breeds contempt". He did not live up to their expectations of getting a redeemer who would stand up to the Roman Empire and instead said: “Give what is Caesar’s to Caesar” (Matthew 22:15-22). Some, especially the Pharisees, Sadducees, and Scribes felt that he was too liberal with his application of the Law.
Consequently, there were a combination of prophecies and warnings about the word of God departing from the chosen nation such as:
1. The parable of the vineyard tenants (Matt 21:33-36)
2. The parable of the rich man who held a banquet (14:15-24)
3. The analogy of a chicken and her chicks (Matt 23:37-39).
As a result, this dispensation ended when the apostles were sent out to all ends of the earth to make disciples out of all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit(Matthew 28:19).
The Sixth Covenant, the Church of the Apostles of Jesus Christ
The sixth covenant was enacted when the apostles of Jesus Christ were asked to take over the preaching of the gospel. This is the time when for example, Paul proudly called himself an apostle to the gentiles (Galatians 1:15-16, Romans 11:13-14). The change of focus from one nation to all nations distinguished the Sixth Church from the previous. After the Pentecost, the disciples went to Samaria and as they prayed, many people received the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:14-17). Despite the instructions that Jesus gave (Matt 28:19), the apostles had not fully understood that things had changed, and that a new chapter had been opened. That is the reason why God had to talk to Peter in a dream and tell him not to call other people unclean (Acts 10:11-15). Even after this, what happened next was still a shocker to Peter since unlearning what he previously knew was not easy. They were in Joppa – a Canaanite town. The people there were not even an Abrahamic race like the Samaritans. They were gentiles, a Hamitic race, yet they received the Holy Spirit even without the prayer intervention by the apostles (Acts 10:34-37, Acts 10:44). This was a remarkable transition. After over 2,000 years– the word of God had left Abraham’s descendants for the gentiles.
There is much to learn from the apostles of Jesus Christ, just like Christ himself, but that is beyond the scope of this message. They faced a lot of challenges however, many were persecuted and executed. The episode of Paul and Silas in prison where an angel opened the doors is known to many (Acts 16:16-40). The book of Revelations was written by John while being punished in Patmos (Rev 1:9). Peter was killed in Rome, and such was the fate of Paul. Thomas on the other hand was killed in India – at Chennai in the South. All told, the apostles of Jesus Christ were almost all killed.
To cut a long story short, the church of the apostles did not run its full length – just like the dispensation of Jesus in Israel, it was cut short by murder. The consequence of this is that God was separated from man and no covenant remained in force by 1,000 AD as illustrated by Larkin – through the circle marked “dark ages”. This was a period of turmoil and anarchy. Consequently, for a long time people lacked a direct relationship with God just like existed in the past. This abnormality largely became the norm. Many people today believe that a lot has changed from the times God used to speak to people who were different from them. On the contrary, the believers of the past looked forward to the present times when they believed that future generations would be in greater light than they were(Joel 2:29-31).
The Seventh Covenant, the Church of Elijah
The present dispensation began in the 20th Century (or 1900s) with the prophecies (earlier mentioned)about the word of God coming to the world through the descendants of Ham. On the chart, the seventh circle displays the word anti-Christ. But not yet. The anti-Christ will not emerge from a vacuum but as a response to a revival when the Word of God comes to earth. When the rider appears, the beast and nations will attempt to fight him. It is not to mean that nations will go out to fight a literal horse dangling in the air (Rev 19:19). However because this time round the rider has come with a sword, he will strike the nations (Rev 19:15) – again not literally. Thus, the enemies will be subdued (Revelations 19:21) and he will rule over the world pending the final (Revelations 20:7). This imagery can better be studied in depth later in the year.
The church of the apostles like any other before it, was not about impressive infrastructure and scholars trained in the finest institutes of theology. Consequently, some of them were ordinary citizens but God still found them pivotal. Peter, James, and John for example, were fishermen with no known background as scholars or priests. They were joined by others including intellectuals such as Paul who later played an important role in the Church, but were apostles due to divine selection - and not their learning. Put simply, they would not have fitted in the present understanding of what some people call Church – certainly not a mainstream or even a legal one in some jurisdictions.
To see the conformity between the church of the apostles of Christ and the seventh church (the church of the apostles of Baba Johane) a reading study of Paul’s letters is sufficient. For example, 1 Corinthians 14:29-32, Paul says:
“Two or three prophets should speak, and the others should weigh carefully what is said. And if a revelation comes to someone who is sitting down, the first speaker should stop. For you can all prophesy in turn so that everyone may be instructed and encouraged. The spirits of prophets are subject to the control of prophets”.
From the above words, the role and dominance of the Holy Spirit in the Church of the apostles is evident and remains so in this time when God has shone a light on the earth.
Before zeroing to how the covenant itself was enacted in present times, some insight may be gained by meditating on one of the many pointers to the present times in the book of Revelations. John the writer without any doubt had the word of God. When Jesus lived on earth, he sent his followers to the lost sheep of the house of Israel to tell them: The kingdom of God is near (Mathew 10:6). John saw a mighty angel flying with everlasting Gospel to preach to every tribe, tongue, people and nation because the time for God to judge had come (John 14:6-7). To begin with there is a difference between the kingdom being near and the time to judge having come. Secondly, John had the gospel. The gospel that he was shown was eternal. Why should an angel with the gospel be shown carrying an eternal gospel? That was a pointer to their mission being cut short.
Consequently, another covenant would be established, and this is what happened after the founder of the seventh covenant, Father John (or Baba Johane) gathered his followers. God asked him to form an Institution of selected celibate women who collectively would be the Ark of the last covenant. Believers were asked to take care of the house of covenant – according to the statutes that were given from heaven. If they failed to do so, he said Africa would plunge into darkness. Secondly, the house of covenant was promised as the instrument that God would use to save the coming generations of believers from the fire that would destroy the world(Malachi 4:5, 2 Peter 3, Revelation 20:9) .
Hopefully, with this overview, the different times, covenants and churches are well understood – and will be referred to in future when need arises.