The Great Simplifier
—Christ’s death and “end time” doctrine
There's an awful complexity of thought and teaching surrounding the seven great changes that Jesus made. However there's no need for such confusion, because one great event simplified everything.
1 The Seven Great Changes Reviewed
First, let's just remind ourselves of the seven great changes brought about by Jesus...
- Mosaic covenant was abolished, replaced by the new covenant of Jesus Christ.
- Levitical-Aaronic priesthood and sacrifices replaced by Christ’s priesthood and sacrifice.
- The reconciliation of Jew and Gentile in Christ removed all distinction and inequality.
- The Israel of God became a heavenly Kingdom with Christ as its king.
- The symbolic types or shadows were replaced by the real and true things.
- The Baptism of John was replaced by baptism in the name of Christ and into his death.
- The Patriarchal/Mosaical ages ended, and the Christian age commenced.
2 Questions About The Seven Great Changes
Next, let's list some extremely important questions that arise concerning the seven great changes...
- Did these changes all happen at once, or were some made before others?
- Did these seven changes occur in a clear-cut fashion? Did the old things completely pass away immediately, or was there a fading out of the old, and a phasing in of the new, over a number of years identified as the "Last Days"?
- Were some of these great changes interrupted and postponed for many centuries, and are we still waiting for the process of change to be resumed at a time known as "the Last Days"?
- Were some of these changes brought in as temporary or interim measures, and are we waiting for them to be reversed at a time known as "the Last Days"?
- Were the "Last Days" the years immediately preceding the great changes —the period of preparation for the climax of change?
- Were the "Last Days" the years immediately following the great changes —the period of reaction to the climax of change?
- Are the "Last Days" the entire period since the great changes occurred, the entire Christian Age as it were?
Obviously the answers to these questions cannot all be "Yes" and no one would answer "Yes" to them all. However all the questions would get a "Yes" from someone, albeit in some cases a qualified "Yes". To properly answer those questions, we need to understand three principles concerning the changes that Christ made.
- All seven changes occurred together and suddenly —no fade-out or phase-in period.
- No change was interrupted or postponed.
- All changes were permanent, none temporary.
3 The Great Simplifier
You probably did not expect matters to get so complicated, but don't worry —there's is one event that greatly simplifies the rather complex tangle of ideas we have encountered in the questions on this page.
All of the seven great changes occurred at one crucial event. The great simplifier is the crucifixion of Jesus, and his resurrection from the dead.
Speaking of the old covenant-law, Paul says Jesus "took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross" (Colossians 2:14). Paul says of the distinction between Jew and Gentile, that it was "broken down... abolished... put to death... through the cross" (Ephesians 2:14-16).
Regarding the priestly sacrifice for sins, we read that God "takes away the first that he might establish the second... through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all" (Hebrews 10:9-10).
In our next lesson called “The Crossover” we will treat this in more detail.