String 7: Mystery Revealed
A mystery is that which is kept a profound secret. It is something unknown, except to certain ones, being kept carefully and continuously concealed from all others. Jehovah being all powerful can hide or keep secret from every creature, earthly or heavenly, any part or all of his great plan and reveal or make it known at such time as might please him. One feature of his great plan he did keep secret for ages and it is still a secret to all except a few.
When Jesus was on earth he taught the people in parables or dark sayings. His disciples came to him and asked: “Why speakest thou unto them in parables? He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.” (Matthew 13:10,11) It will be observed that he did not say, ‘You now know the mysteries of God’; but that it was given them to know those mysteries. Not even his disciples understood him in many things when they were with him. On the last night before his crucifixion he was instructing them in various things that would be helpful to them in the days to come. On that occasion he said: “When he, the spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come.” (John 16:13) The spirit of truth here mentioned is the holy spirit, the spirit of God, the invisible power operating upon the minds of those who are in covenant relationship with God. Jesus here used the masculine pronoun in speaking of the holy spirit.
The holy spirit was given to the disciples at Pentecost, that is to say, fifty days after the resurrection of Jesus. “And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the holy spirit, and began to speak with other tongues, as the spirit gave them utterance.” (Acts 2:1-4) The King James Version of our Bibles, translates the word here holy “ghost”, but there is no warrant for such a translation. It comes from the word which means spirit.
It was at Pentecost that for the first time God’s great mystery began to be understood by the disciples. The mystery of God has been a stumbling block to both Jews and Christians so-called; but in God’s due time he will make known to all the secret of his mystery and then all rightly exercised by this will rejoice with exceeding joy.
The mystery is the Christ, the great one through whom redemption, deliverance and blessing will ultimately come to all mankind who receive Christ and obey him. God foreshadowed his mystery for ages by the use of various men. Yet all of that time he kept it secret.