What's the Difference?
There is a big difference between a mystery and a secret. The one thing they have in common is that something is hidden.
Some secrets are revealed only to a select group. It is a secret that they jealously keep to themselves and only share with those that are deemed worthy to become a part of their secret organization or cult.
There is another kind of secret.
It is a secret that is hidden in plain sight that is meant to be searched out and discovered by everyone.
There are some that would accuse anyone who used the word "mystery" in reference to the scriptures as an occultist, a practitioner of the black arts of divination or a Kabbalist. These are practices that we abhor and advise others to avoid at all cost.
Having said that, we are not prevented from using the word "mystery" in connection with the scriptures; far from it.
Anyone that tells you that there are no mysteries in the Bible except perhaps the mystery of the timing of the Second Coming is spiritually blind and biblically illiterate.
The scriptures are full of mysteries that we are encouraged to search out, collect the clues and follow the breadcrumbs in order that they remain mysteries no more.
God loves to play hide and seek with His children and has arranged His word in such a way that it invites careful and serious study in order to discover its truths.
We are told to search the scriptures, not just read them. We are also told ahead of time what it is we will find when we search diligently with all our heart, a heart that loves God and wants to please Him.
What will we find?
We will find Christ, the Son of God, the Savior of the World. He will be at the end of all our investigations of God’s Word. He is the lens through which we are to view all scripture.
The Lord has hidden things in His word that can only be understood with the passage of time and the enablement of the Holy Spirit.
Many of the prophetic harbingers we understand with ease, 2000 years after the Cross of Calvary were unfathomable mysteries hidden to past generations of saints. Hidden in plain sight; waiting for the right time, the appointed time, to be fulfilled and understood.
Today there are ministries being led by men who were once lost and are now found in Christ. Many of these men are Jewish, and in the last days, we are witnessing more and more of these men being raised up in order to reveal mysteries about Messiah that were hidden in plain sight in the Festivals and Feasts of the Lord, the Torah, temple ceremonies, and the Levitical priesthood.
What a joy it is for Christians to see these mysteries disclosed. Mysteries that magnify the Messiah, Jesus Christ.
If you don’t like the word "mystery" you can substitute the phrase “connecting the dots.”
If you belong to a secret organization, a cult or a secret society, you are usually bound by oaths not to reveal the secrets you have been shared with them. The initiate or adept is warned with threats of everything from dis-fellowshipping to a cruel death if they reveal the secrets that have been given to them.
If you belong to the Church of Christ and are His disciple you have discovered things that were secret and previously hidden from your eyes. The big difference is that once the mysteries of the gospel are discovered you are commanded to share them with everyone. The prayer of every Christian should be that God will open the eyes of the unbelieving.
We are to pray that the mysteries that are now hidden from the eyes of lost sinners will be revealed. Our prayer is that God reveals Himself so that lost men and women might call upon the name of the Lord and be saved.
The Glad Tidings that the Christian Church has been told to share with all men is not a secret, although it is hidden from the eyes of those that do not believe.
Who does the hiding?
God does the hiding and God does the revealing. It is His prerogative and His alone.
Christians are told not to hide the truth but to declare and publish it to all the world.
Does that mean that things are not hidden?
But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: 1 Corinthians 2:7
Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom. Psalm 51:6
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. 1 Timothy 3:16
And he said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables: Mark 4:11
For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. Romans 11:25
Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began, Romans 16:25
Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 1 Corinthians 15:51
Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself: Ephesians 1:9
How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words, Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ). Ephesians 3:3-4
And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ: Ephesians 3:9
This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church. Ephesians 5:32
And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel, Ephesians 6:19
Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: Colossians 1:26
To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: Colossians 1:27
For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. 2 Thessalonians 2:7
Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience. 1 Timothy 3:9
The revelation regarding the Christian Church was a mystery for thousands of years. A mystery hidden from the eyes of those that faithfully and carefully read the scriptures. It is not that the revelation regarding the church was not in the scriptures; it was simply a mystery that was hidden until the appointed time.
So if anyone tells you that there are no mysteries in the scriptures, they are sadly mistaken.
As we read the scriptures and meditate upon them we are constantly coming into more and more light that illuminates our souls and draws us closer and closer to our Heavenly Father. Our mind, once exposed to the light of scripture, comes under the witness and authority of the scriptures; energized by the reality of the promise that the Holy Spirit will lead us into the truth.
Many of the mysteries of the scripture are solved when we diligently seek to understand the actual context and meaning of scripture. Not adding our own ideas, but simply listening without obstructions or barriers to what the Lord is revealing.
This is why we at Rock Island Books are producing word studies of the scriptures. This is why we go back to the original language to try and figure out if anything has been lost in our English translation, as it often is.
The solutions to the mysteries of scripture are all found in the words of scripture themselves as they unfold over time.
Prophecies that are seen in the future by one generation are viewed in the past by another generation. Once hidden profound mysteries of the Old Testament are now leaping off the pages of the New Testament. Riddles and dark sayings that puzzled the wisest of men are now understood clearly by young children.
The mysteries of the scriptures are coming to light in these last days. Things once hidden are now unfolding.
So with this in mind, let’s see if we can connect the dots and unravel the mystery of the 120 years revealed to Moses.
Was God simply giving Noah a heads up that in 120 years the flood would come?
Was 120 years the new length of days given to man after the flood?
Or was it something else?
The key to understanding the answer to this question is found in the scriptures themselves. The answer is hidden in plain sight in the literal Hebrew conventional language, the picture language that is embedded in each letter, and the number language that reveals a message based on numbers and how they are used in the scripture.
We need seek no other source of information. The scriptures alone will yield the answer to the question that arises from the passage in Genesis 6:3. Searching the scripture we find only two other mentions of 120 years and both of them are in reference to Moses. The connection and clue to the meaning of the first mention of 120 years are found in the second and final mention of 120 years disclosed in Deuteronomy 34:7:
And Moses was an hundred and twenty years old when he died: his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated. Deuteronomy 34:7
Moses is in perfect health. His eyesight has not been dimmed by age and he is full of vigor. And yet, in his 120th year, God takes his life.
The answer to this question gives us insight and understanding as to what the 120-year prophecy of Genesis 6:3 is all about.
And the Lord said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years. Genesis 6:3
Let’s begin investigating the meaning of the 120 years disclosed in Genesis 6:3 to discover if it is actually a prophetic announcement of a timeline that ends abruptly after 120 non-sequential Jubilees. In other words, let’s begin looking for clues that this actually is a 6000 year prophetic harbinger, or are we just letting our imagination hold hands with our wishes and expectation.
Are we imposing unwarranted speculation into the Genesis 6:3 120 year prophecy?
To answer this question, I would like to investigate 3 things in the descending order of importance.
The First Clue as to the meaning of the 120 year Genesis 6:3 prophecy:
Since all our clues come from the scriptures alone, the first question we need to ask is how many times does the Hebrew reveal the number 120. Or more accurately, how many times does the Hebrew reveal One Hundred and Twenty Years?
The answer is that this revelation is unfolded before us on only three occasions. In the first instance God is revealing it to Noah and in the second instance, God reveals it to Moses.
Even the most cursory glance at the circumstances around the death of Moses provides the clues needed to unravel this mystery.
Moses is prevented from going into the Promised Land.
Immediately after his death, the children of Israel enter the Promised Land.
Moses represents the same period of time that is in view with the 120-year prophecy.
When the 120 Salvation Jubilees are fulfilled, the Children of Israel enter the 1000 year millennial reign of Messiah in Israel.
The 6000 years for mankind is rehearsed in the drama of the death of Moses. This event immediately precedes the march into the Promised Land by the Jews. As a prophetic harbinger, it marks the beginning of the final 1000 year Messianic age.
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