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The Mystery of the Gentiles has been a long journey for me – several years in duration. It has been full of twisting paths and jagged precipices where many would have said it was foolish to trod, but always the path has led upward toward truth – and where truth leads I must follow.
The ultimate, and in some ways unexpected, impact of The Mystery of the Gentiles is something that even those dedicated to the pursuit of truth may initially find difficult to accept, especially in light of its spiritual, eschatological and political ramifications. It is my prayer that you will be able to look beyond the haze of supposition and predisposition through which most of us spend our lives gazing, and instead reach beyond into the realm of truth.
This is not a book to be skimmed. Every chapter must be read carefully and thoughtfully if you are to gain its full import. Each premise is built upon the preceding premise, and you may therefore find it confusing if even one premise is skipped.
The idea that the gentiles are not who many people have so long believed them to be is a tremendous concept – one that, if you are willing to solve their mystery, may forever change your life. May you read with an open mind and be awed by the power of our God’s perfect design.
Nebraska, November 2004
Setting the Stage
Nearly everyone enjoys a good mystery. Most of us can recall a book or movie that captivated us from the opening sentence through the very last scene. This accounts for the popularity of mysteries by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Agatha Christie and others. Yet, none of these authors’ works compare to the mysteries presented in the book inspired by the greatest of all authors. Scottish novelist and poet Sir Walter Scott claimed that the greatest mystery of all is contained within the Holy Scriptures:
Within that awful volume lies the mystery of mysteries!1
The greatest suspense novels pale in comparison with the mysteries found in the words inspired by Yahweh’s* Holy Spirit:
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith Yahweh.** For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. - Isaiah 55:8-9***
O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord…? - Romans 11:33-34****
Yahweh embodies mysteries and distinctive wonders, along with infinite concepts and principles that are beyond the finite capabilities of man to fully understand. For instance, Yeshua’s (Jesus’ given Hebrew name) virgin conception and His dual divine and human nature are incomprehensible to the human mind, and therefore can only be received by faith. *****
*“Yahweh” is the personal Hebrew name of the God of the Bible.2
**Where the Tetragrammaton YHWH – the four Hebrew characters that represent the personal name of God – has been incorrectly rendered the LORD or GOD in Scripture, I have taken the liberty to correct this error by inserting Yahweh where appropriate.2
***All Scripture is quoted from the King James Version unless otherwise noted.
****Portions of Scripture have been omitted for brevity’s sake. If there are questions regarding any passage, please open your Bibles and study the text to ensure that it has been properly used.
*****Yeshua is the English transliteration of our Savior’s Hebrew name.2
Moses declared that Yahweh purposely concealed certain things, but those He does reveal belong to us that we might better serve Him:
The secret things belong unto Yahweh our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law. - Deuteronomy 29:29
Job 32:8 informs us that “the inspiration of the Almighty giveth … understanding.” Yahweh has given His Spirit to Christians that they might know what is otherwise incomprehensible to carnal man (1 Corinthians 2:7-14). No man knows Yahweh in His fullness, but that which can be known of Him is revealed in His Word through His Spirit.
There are enigmas in the Bible that our finite minds are unable to comprehend fully. But there are also mysteries within that incredible book that Yahweh has given us to solve - if we are willing to search for the clues:
It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter. - Proverbs 25:2
This book is devoted to one of the Bible’s greatest mysteries – that of the oft-mentioned gentiles.* These people, who are inextricably bound with Yeshua the Christ, are mentioned by the Apostle Paul in conjunction with the mystery of Christ and in relation to the mystery of Israel’s blindness (Ephesians 3:1-6, Colossians 1:25-27, 1 Timothy 3:16 and Romans 11:25-26). Who are these gentiles, and what is their relationship with Yeshua?
*The word “gentiles,” derived from the non-specific Hebrew “goyim” and Greek “ethne,” should not be capitalized. Therefore the word “gentile” has been capitalized only when quoting scripture or another source.
The Making of a Good Mystery
Under the heading “Mystery Story,” The World Book Encyclopedia states in part:
Mystery stories about crime are also known as detective stories…. Characteristically, they are carefully plotted schemes of crime and detection, clues and suspense, and sometimes pursuit and violence.3
Although it is unnecessary to develop each of these elements, the mystery of the gentiles contains most of them, making it worthy of its title.
The majority of people, secular and Christian alike, do not recognize the gentiles’ identity as a mystery.* From the onset, this real-life mystery involves more intrigue than other mysteries because its protagonists are misidentified and therefore do not even realize that they share a part in the intrigue. While most mysteries begin by identifying the main characters, the mystery of the gentiles is all about discovering their identity.
*Not everyone claiming to be a Christian has been properly instructed in the biblical plan of salvation. Therefore, in many instances the designation “Christian” is used in a generic sense only. Mark 16:15-16, Acts 2:36-41, 22:1-16, Romans 6:3-4, Galatians 3:26-27 and 1 Peter 3:21 should be studied in order to understand what is required for salvation in Yeshua the Christ.4
This biblical saga is even now playing itself out, and the majority of the people reading this book are a part of the cast. In other words, this mystery is most likely about you in ways you have possibly never imagined.
For anyone willing to do the detective work of a Sherlock Holmes, the Bible contains the clues that will aid them in unmasking the characters in this real-life drama. Regrettably, however, not everyone is interested in putting forth the effort required in discovering the clues, much less using them to unravel this mystery. Content to let the characters remain disguised, they absolve themselves with excuses such as “So what? What difference does it make?”5 Consequently, they will never experience the thrill of solving the riddle. On the other hand, to those who seek, they will find; to those who knock, the door will be opened; and to those who ask, it will be given to them (Matthew 7:7).
Table of Contents Chapter 2
1. Sir Walter Scott, The Monastery, quoted by John Bartlett, Familiar Quotations, Fourteenth Edition (Boston, MA: Little, Brown and Company, 1968) p. 521.
2. For a more thorough explanation concerning the use of the sacred names of God, “The Third Commandment” may be read online, or the book Thou shalt not take the name of Yahweh thy God in vain, by Ted R. Weiland, may ordered as a book from Mission to Israel Ministries, PO Box 248, Scottsbluff, Nebraska 69363 for a suggested $4 donation.*
3. “Mystery Story,” The World Book Encyclopedia (Chicago, IL: Field Enterprises Educational Corporation, 1963) Volume 12, p. 812.
4. For more information concerning baptism and its relationship to salvation, “Baptism by the Scriptures” may be read online, or it may be ordered as a free tract from Mission to Israel Ministries, PO Box 248, Scottsbluff, Nebraska 69363.
5. Israel’s Identity: It Matters!, by Ted R. Weiland, answers the question “What difference does it make?” It Matters! may be read online, or it may be ordered from Mission to Israel Ministries, PO Box 248, Scottsbluff, Nebraska 69363 for a suggested $4 donation.*
*We are admonished in Matthew 10:8 “freely ye have received, freely give.” Although there is a suggested price for our books, we do not sell them. In keeping with 2 Corinthians 9:7, this ministry is supported by freewill offerings. If you cannot afford the suggested price, inform us of your situation, and we will be pleased to provide you with whatever you need for whatever you can send.
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