Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Tim. 2:15

King James AV1611


Mystery of The Ages
Mystery of The Ages© -is a book written by Dr. James Modlish
-reprinted here with the author's permission-


INTRODUCTION: This dispensation extended from the "Exodus" to the "Birth of Christ", a period of 1491 (?) years, and is known as the Dispensation of the "Law."

At the close of the preceding dispensation the children of Israel cried unto God in their bondage and He sent them a "deliverer" in Moses. Heretofore God had allowed man to govern himself, now He purposed to organize a Commonwealth with laws and regulations and a "visible" system of worship with a local habitation or place of worship.

This government was to be "Theocratic". That is, it was God's intention to Himself rule on earth through a representative that He Himself would appoint. The person chosen was Moses. When Moses died he was succeeded by Joshua. After his death the children of Israel had no ruler, except as by reason of bondage they cried unto the Lord, and He, as circumstances required, raised up "Judges" who governed them for about 450 years. (Acts 13:20) Then they provoked God to give them a king, and Saul was selected, who reigned for 40 years. He was followed by David, who was succeeded by his son, Solomon, each of whom reigned 40 years.

At the death of Solomon, B.C. 975, the kingdom was divided, Solomon's son Rehoboam getting two tribes, spoken of as Judah, and Jeroboam, a usurper, ten tribes, called Israel. Israel lasted for 254 years longer, and was carried away captive to Assyria in B.C. 721, and 115 years later Judah went into exile to Babylon.

In B.C. 536, after 70 years captivity, the Jews returned from Babylon, and from B.C. 166-40 strove under Asmoneans to regain supremacy over Palestine, but in B.C. 40, Herod the Great, an Idumean, was made king by the Romans, and in A.D. 70 Jerusalem was sacked and burned by Titus, and the Jews driven out of Palestine.

In the "Legal Dispensation" God dealt with a chosen nation, Israel. His dealings with them were based on a "WRITTEN LAW" given at Mr. Sinai. This "Ceremonial Law" was given to Israel only, and not to any other nation. Israel then is to be judged according to their observance of it. The "Ceremonial Law," as far as its outward observance, ceased at the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70. Because of the great number of significant events during this dispensation we shall take several lessons to cover this time period. This outline shall deal with the Passover and events that led up to it.


A. Egypt - The children of Israel were not made for Egypt, nor Egypt for them, they were made for Canaan. Egypt, is a type of this present "Evil World." In Moses' day it presented the best specimen of worldly glory and magnificence that the world had ever seen. It had everything to gratify the "Lust of the Flesh," the "Lust of the Eyes," and the "Pride of Life".

B. Pharaoh - Pharaoh was a type of "Satan". Egypt was full of idolatry, the very stronghold of Satan, and a hotbed of every species of sin. Having Israel in his power Pharaoh tried to make it permanent. That is what Satan tries to do with the sinner.

C. Moses - Moses was a type of Christ. Moses was prepared and sent by God for the work of deliverance from bondage.

D. The Plagues - The "Ten Plagues" were judgments against the "gods" of Egypt.

[1]. "Water into blood," against the Nile, the "Idol River."

[2]. "Frogs," against the worship of frogs.

[3]. "Lice," against the earth god "Seb" and the priests, who could not officiate when vermin were upon them.

[4]. "Flies," against the atmosphere "Shu, "son of "Ra," the Sun-God.

[5]. "Murrain," against the "Sacred Bull" - APIS.

[6]. "Boils," against "Sutech" or "Typhon," to whom victims were offered, their ashes being flung to the winds.

[7]. "Locusts," against the "Sacred Beetle,"

[8]. "Hail," against "Shu".

[9]. "Darkness," against the "Sun-God" - Ra, of whom Pharaoh was believed to be the child.

[10]. "Death of the First Born," against the nation guilty of wholesale infanticide in ordering that all male Hebrew children should be cast into the river Nile. (Ex. 1:22)


When Moses and Aaron appeared before Pharaoh they said - "Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness." And Pharaoh said - "Who is the Lord that I should obey His voice to let Israel go? I know not the Lord, neither will I let Israel go." (Ex. 5:1-2) Then Moses and Aaron demanded that Pharaoh let Israel go a three days journey into the wilderness. Pharaoh again refused, and practically said, the service of God is a WASTE OF TIME. He then increased the children of Israel's burdens. But when after the first three Plagues there came the "Plague of Flies" upon the Egyptians only, Pharaoh thought it was time to "compromise," so he sent for Moses and said - "Go ye, sacrifice to your God in the land." (Ex. 8:25)

A. The First Compromise - (Ex. 8:25,26) Pharaoh would not object to an occasional sacrifice "in the land" if that would make Israel satisfied to remain in Egypt where he could retain power over them. Satan does not object to an occasional "spasm" of religion as long as you stay in the world. Moses responded by reminding Pharaoh that "Apis the sacred bull" was one of the gods of Egypt and if Israel offered sacrifices of "bullocks" to "Jehovah" "in the land" that would be an "abomination" to the Egyptians, and they would stone them for sacrificing the "gods of Egypt," This compromise means that a man cannot be a Christian and worship God in the land without offending the world.

B. The Second Compromise - (Ex 8:27,28) "I will let you go, that ye may sacrifice to the Lord your God in the wilderness; only ye shall not go very far away." Pharaoh knew it would be easy to get Israel back if they did not go very far away. So Satan says - "Yes, become a professing Christian, join the church, but do not go very far away. Observe Christmas, Easter and a few other special occasions, but the rest of the year enjoy the pleasures of Egypt. Israel could never reach Canaan if they remained close to Egypt. When Christians are heard constantly saying, "Is it right or wrong to do this?" You know they have been caught in the "not very far away" compromise.

C. The Third Compromise - (Ex. 10:7-11) Between the second and third compromise there were the plagues of murraim, boils and hail. Pharaoh once again decided to compromise and agree to allow the men only to go to the wilderness to sacrifice. He knew that if the men left their loved ones in Egypt it would not be long before they would be back. This compromise means let the older people become Christians if they want to, but do not force "religion" on the young. After all religion is a "personal matter," let them enjoy the Egyptian pleasures.

D. The Fourth Compromise - (Ex. 10:24-26) This compromise found Pharaoh allowing Israel to go but insisting their possessions (flocks & herds) stay behind. This compromise means to be a Christian, give your soul to God, but keep your possessions for yourself. People that succumb to this compromise invest their money to increase their own wealth but invest nothing in the Bank of Heaven (Matt. 6:20). 


God's standard of "Power" in the Old Testament is the EXODUS, but before He could deliver Israel by His "Power", they must be redeemed by BLOOD. "The Passover" is a beautiful illustration of the "Plan of Salvation" through Christ. "For even Christ our 'Passover' is sacrificed for us." (I Cor. 5:7) As the blood of the "Passover Lamb" saved Israel, so the BLOOD of the "Lamb of God" saves us. "Ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold,...but with the precious BLOOD OF CHRIST, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot." (I Pet. 1:18- 19)

As the children of Israel dwelt in the "Land of Goshen," and it was a part of Egypt, they came under the "Doom of Egypt, " which was that all the "First Born" should die. To offset this, the children of Israel were commanded to take a lamb, without blemish, of the first year, and kill it, and take of the blood and sprinkle it on the two side posts and lintel of the door of their dwelling, and when the Lord saw the blood He would pass over that house on that fateful night, and not destroy the "First Born" sheltered behind that blood marked door. (Ex. 12:1-28)

The Passover was to be to Israel the "BEGINNING OF MONTHS." (Ex. 12:2) It was to be the first month of the year to them. A man does not begin to live until he is saved by the "BLOOD OF CHRIST." Until then he is spiritually dead in trespasses and sins. (Eph. 2:1-3) The time spent in the "brick-kilns" of sin, and amid the "flesh-pots" of pleasure, do not count, and must be omitted from the life of the believer. The Passover as a means of salvation was a plan of God's own devising. No man had a hand in it, except to do as God commanded. It was all of GRACE.

A. The Sacrifice - The "Sacrifice" was to be a LAMB. (Ex. 12:5) An emblem of meekness and purity, such was Jesus. "He was led as a lamb to the slaughter," (Isa. 53:7). The lamb was to be young, a male of the first year. It was to be without blemish. If a spot had been found upon it, it would have been unfit for sacrifice. Jesus was without blemish. He was absolutely sinless. (II Cor. 5:21, I John 3:5)

Many have the idea that Christ's death automatically saves them. But the lamb was not simply to be killed, something had to be done with the BLOOD, and with the FLESH. They were to take the BLOOD and sprinkle it on the two side posts and on the upper door post (lintel) of their dwellings, and they were to EAT the flesh. (Ex. 12:7) The "First Born" was not safe when the blood was simply shed, or even when caught in the basin. It was not enough to "analyze" the blood, the blood had to be used, and they were not left in doubt as to how it was to be used, it was to be sprinkled on the door of their dwellings with a bunch of "Hyssop." Hyssop is a common plant, and grew everywhere in Egypt. It was not a rare plant that they had to send to some foreign country to get. Hyssop stands for "Faith".

B. The Feast - "Ye shall eat of the FLESH in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs ye shall eat it." (Ex. 12:8-10) They were SAVED by the blood, but it was not enough to kill the lamb and use its blood, they were to FEED ON THE LAMB. Some Christians stop short at being saved by the Blood, and fail to FEED ON THE LAMB. That is why they are not nourished and sustained in their Christian life. There can be no true fellowship only as we eat of the Lamb. The lamb was not to be eaten raw, or sodden with water (boiled), but roasted with fire. To roast it they had to use a "SPIT". That is, they had to support it over the fire by a rod run lengthwise through it, and another rod at right angles through the shoulders to turn it, thus symbolizing the CROSS. It was on the CROSS that Jesus' body was subject to the "Fire of God's Righteous Wrath" against sin.

The Passover Lamb was to be eaten with UNLEAVENED bread. (Ex. 12:8) Leaven is a symbol of evil and therefore could not be used at such a feast as that of the Passover, and the Apostle Paul calls on us to purge out the old leaven of malice and wickedness. (I Cor. 5:7-8)

They were also to eat the feast with "Bitter Herbs," symbolical of their previous bondage, and they were to let nothing remain until the morning. They were to forsake sleep to feed on the lamb, and if any were left over they were to burn it lest it fall into unfit hands or be left behind in their hasty departure. What a beautiful picture we have here. While a terrible hurricane of Divine Judgment was sweeping at midnight over Egypt, destroying the "First Born" in every home unsheltered by the blood, the children of Israel were FEASTING PEACEFULLY AND JOYFULLY ON ROASTED LAMB.

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