LIGHT OUT OF SHADOWS
by Bill Britton
The chapters of this book are a series of messages written and published in booklet form in earlier days of this writing ministry.
When I was first introduced to the truths of the typology of the Old Testament, many years ago, it opened to me a whole new realm of revelation and study. And most especially the typical truths of the Tabernacle in the wilderness thrilled my heart, and stirred me to hunger for greater knowledge of His Word. Many end-time truths are hidden in the types and shadows of His precious Word.
No one wants to go back and live in the time of the children of Israel as they wandered through the wilderness. It was a time of shadows, typing the realities which we now have. But if, from those shadows, we can throw more light on the truths of the New Testament, it will be a profitable study. Which is why we call this collection of messages: "Light out of Shadows".
I would remind those who do not take much stock in Old Testament types, that the Apostle Paul said: "But this I confess unto thee, that after the way which they call heresy, so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets." He was willing to base his reason for worshipping Jesus Christ on what he had read in the Old Testament. Again he said: "Having therefore obtained help of God, I continue unto this day, witnessing both to small and great, saying none other things than those which the prophets and Moses did say should come."
So the Law of Moses actually was speaking of things to come, things concerning Jesus Christ. And all things that Paul preached concerning Jesus Christ, being saved by faith, the gifts of the Spirit, Sonship, the Body of Christ, the second coming of Christ, and his other teachings, all were found in the Old Testament scriptures. "Saying none other things�" (Acts 26:22)
I know of no one who has received or taught all the typical truths found in the Tabernacle, the Temple, and the laws of Moses. I do not pretend that this small book begins to exhaust the glories of Christ found in the Old Testament. It is only an introduction, hoping to stir the reader to greater study of the Word. And now, may God bless you as you open this book, and may He give you the Spirit of revelation and wisdom in the knowledge of Him. In Him ~ Bro. Bill B.
Mysteries Revealed In Shadows
(a poem by Danny Busey 9.19.66)
In riddled rhyme now is set to verse, God's work in time.
The coming of the Spirit, the dawning of the New Day.
The dwelling place of God, in which is hid His way.
Once within a tent, did 'hidden truth' lodge,
The Brazen Altar first, which no one could dodge.
So a Living Altar too, did the Spirit build,
With stones in which the selfish voice was stilled.
The Altar principle is now at work,
Sharing has become a joy which none dare shirk.
But the Living Spirit moves on through men who are broken,
Under Divine inspiration the life-giving Word must be spoken.
The Laver with its cleansing water is thus brought in,
And the Voice of God is heard above the earthly din.
Ushered in is another realm of the activities of God.
Up from Rome's darkness we steadily plod.
The Lamp of Truth with its seven-fold light
Begins in the Fourteenth Century to dispel the night.
So the Golden Candlestick now stands in its place,
Each branch flaming with light, revealing the Glory of His Grace.
The Table of Shewbread, with its orderly rows;
Tis a place of feeding, where each enlightened one goes.
The fine flour of His Pure Word is the only food
That can sustain the one whose mind is renewed.
Twelve loaves were laid� "Six on a row."
For 'governmental training' each must know.
Atop the two rows, pure frankincense is placed as a crown,
Thus prophetic revelations do the anointed ones expound.
The Altar of Incense now occupies a prime place,
For before the Veil, and into it, is its face.
Worship in Spirit and in Truth is the thought implied;
Congregations waiting before Him, without human will to guide.
Pure worship unto Him must in these days ascend;
Worship without selfish pretense, which doth offend.
As the clouds of incense did rise without form,
So must our praise reach Him, out of humble hearts born.
May we learn this lesson that is so vital,
For without worship in Spirit we sit as men idle.
So arise ye ones of His election into this place,
For here and here alone do we gaze into His face.
Tis the place that we are changed from glory to glory;
And then Redemption is no longer just a story.
The Glory of His Matchless Grace,
Can now in every detail of life be traced.
Complete Redemption and God's Glory fully revealed;
All is now seen that has from eternity been concealed.
Creation is delivered from corruption's bondage;
Finding fulfillment in the end of this present age.
The hope and traveil of all the ages;
The Sons of God delivered from mortality's cages.
Thus the Ark of His Presence fills our view;
God's plan perfected and ready for Eternity's debut.
Chapter 1 - THE SOUNDING OF THE TRUMPETS
Many people have been waiting with great anticipation to hear the sound of the Trumpet so that they might take their "flight to the sky." What part of the sky they are going to, no one seems to know. No one seems to know, either, whether we Americans will fly up and the Chinese Christians fly downward, or they will fly up and we fly down. Now if all of us on this earthen ball fly upward physically, then we will all be going in different directions in God's great Universe. Now, please understand me� I in no way deny the Scriptures that tell us that Jesus is coming, that there will be a Trumpet, that we will ascend to Him, and that we will meet Him in the clouds� these things are all true, and we thank God for these wonderful Truths. But it is the traditional interpretations put on these Scriptures and the man-made church teachings about them that we differ with.
What Does the Bible Say?
The Bible says there is to be a blowing of Trumpets. Paul the Apostle knew this, and taught the early church the meaning of these trumpets. Paul knew it because it was taught in the Law, with which he was very familiar, having studied at the feet of Gamaliel. In fact, in Acts 26:22 Paul says that he preached nothing except what was found in the Law and the Prophets. Everything he preached about the Body of Christ, the Sons of God, the High Calling, etc., is found pictured in the Law and foretold by the Prophets. 1 Cor. 10:11 tells us that everything that happened to Israel in the Old Testament was for types and ensamples for us upon whom the ends of the world have come. So let us see what God gave Israel concerning the Trumpets�
Announcing the Feast Days
Israel had three major feasts during the year: 1. Passover, 2. Pentecost, 3. Tabernacles. The Feast of Passover was ordained to be a new beginning for Israel, and was in the first month in their dealings with God, though not the first month of the civil year. It was when the lamb was slain, the blood sprinkled on the door-post, and the people took their flight from Egypt. This, as you know, is a type of our salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ and His sacrifices on Calvary. Pentecost, meaning fiftieth, came fifty days later in the third month, the time of harvest. This was when God chose to pour out the Holy Ghost on the early church, signifying the formation of the Church, His Body. Now we know that these two types have been fulfilled, at Calvary and in the upper room on Pentecost, but what about this other great feast� Tabernacles? Has it been fulfilled? No. Are we just to ignore it? No. Is it to be fulfilled after death, in Heaven? No, not any more than the first two feasts. All of these feasts are to be fulfilled right here on this earth, in human vessels. So, let us look to the Bible and see if we can discover what God has for us in this Old Testament type�
The Seventh Month
Just as Passover, the beginning of a new day for Israel (and for us), was in the first month; and just as Pentecost, the time of fruit bearing and harvest, was in the third month (see what happened on the Third day of Creation, Gen. 1); now we find that Tabernacles is in the seventh month (which is the end of the civil year), signifying that it is the end of civil rule of the kingdoms or governments of this world, and a time of Rest prepared for His People. Now, the trumpets were sounded to announce each of the feasts (Num. 10:10), but there is a special significance in the sounding of the trumpets in the seventh month. It was dispensationally to announce the beginning of the seventh month, the day of the Lord, the day of His rest (Lev. 23:24). It alerted the people (those who heard the trumpets) to prepare for the time of soul searching and fiery sacrifice, and the great feast to follow. These things we will deal with in the next few messages on the "Feast of Tabernacles" series, but now we want to consider the trumpets, and the significance they had�
Make Thee Two Trumpets of Silver
In Numbers, chapter 10, "The Lord spake unto Moses saying, Make thee two trumpets of silver; of a whole piece shalt thou make them;" Now, perhaps you want to think that God couldn't think of anything else to say, or saw that Israel had plenty of time and just wanted to make it harder for them� but as for me, I believe God has a good reason for each thing He said, and that there is a special meaning for each instruction He gave Moses. Why two trumpets? In the previous message on "The Two Witnesses", we showed how that the number two is symbolic of Christ in the fullness of His Body� for instance, Adam and his bride who came from his side; The Sun and Moon; the two rows of bread of the table of shew-bread in the tabernacle, and other examples showing forth the glory of Christ and His Body, two yet one body, "one new man" created in "Himself of twain." Notice how the two were made of one piece� this wonderfully shows how Christ identified Himself with His people, being one with them, as explained in Heb. 2:11� He and they "are all of one." So this great message of full salvation in this end of the Age is to be proclaimed in the power of the Spirit by a redeemed people (for silver is the metal of redemption, symbolizing that it is fallen man redeemed by their Saviour, not angels, who give forth this trumpet sound). And just as the two trumpets were beaten into perfect shape from the piece of silver, so must Christ and His Church be brought into perfection through much suffering. Heb. 2:10 says, "it became Him, �in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the Captain (author or originator) of their salvation perfect through sufferings." Heb. 5:8, "Though He were a Son, yet learned He obedience by the things which He suffered." And just as He was perfected by the beating of the silver, so must His Body taste of the dame cup. This message will come through that Body of anointed saints who have gone through the fire and been "refined as silver is refined" (Zech. 13:9, Mal. 3:3). So, beloved, draw not back from the fire, but leap joyfully into it, for the Lord hath ordained it for thy profit, not that thou shouldst be consumed, but that thou should be perfected for His use. "Yea, thou shalt think that He reduceth thee to nothing, but it is only the dross, the hay, wood and stubble that burneth up with a great blaze and a great noise. For the silver doth simply melt before the Refiner, and floweth together to form one body that cannot be separated, but shall be formed into instruments for the glory of God! Complain not against that which the Lord doeth unto thee, attribute not His works unto the enemy, for, my beloved, the apple of mine eye, the enemy cannot touch thee nor work out his purposes in thee for all things work together for thy profit, and to bring thee into the likeness of Him who hath redeemed thee! So, rejoice in the midst of the fire, joyfully thrust the hay and stubble from thee and rejoice while it burneth, and so shalt thou be a sign unto the world, and I will speak unto them through thee, saith the Lord, thy God, and thy Redeemer." Hallelujah, Glory to His great Name!
The Purpose of the Trumpets:
1. The Calling of the Assembly
In Numbers, chapter 10, we find the purposes of the trumpets set forth, the use to which they are put. The first one is in verse two� "For the calling of the assembly." Verse 3 says: "When they shall blow with them, all the assembly shall assemble themselves to thee at the door of the tabernacle�" Out of their various tribes came the inhabitants of Judah, Issachar, Dan, Levi, etc., until they were all one at the Door. Gathered together at the Door, to hear the voice of the Lord through His Prophet. And in this end of the Age, God is once again drawing His people together unto Christ, the Door, to hear His Prophet� that Anointed One that God is raising up to bear the Word of the Lord. Beloved, this is the hour of the fullness of time. It has finally come upon us. This is not time for pretty sermons and educational lectures� it is a time for God's Prophet, the Anointed Body, to lift up his voice like a trumpet as Isaiah says (58:1), "Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins." But so many will not hear, their ears are dull, they stay in their tents of captivity and refuse to "Come out of her, my people" (Rev. 18:4). So many seem unconcerned to the fact that God is calling His people together, to form His Body for a mighty work in the earth. They are more concerned that they receive their checks on time, and that they can stretch them to buy all the pretty things offered by the world. Once a week they take a trip to the church house to salve their consciences and to deaden their ears to the real call of God. To invite them to services in a home, a store building, or a tent is a disgraceful slam at their religious dignity.
But some are hearing, and the trumpets are sounding. And they come� out of their tribes, denominations, sectarian groups, "non-denominational fellowships", and doctrines that separate. Being brought into One by the sound of the Trumpet. Eph. 1:10 says that in the fullness of time He will gather together in one all things in Christ. The message is going forth through redeemed, anointed lips to lay aside that which is of man, that which separates the Body, and come to the Door. And when you leave the sectarian groups, leave your sectarian spirit there. There is no place for it in this Move of God. It may take the refiner's fire to bring this message forth, and to bring this thing about, but it shall be done, the Word of the Lord declares it!
The Journeyings of the Camp
God has a trumpet sound to send forth when it is time for His people to move on into new territory. Numbers 10:2 says, "or the journeying of the camps." It is a sad fact that different groups found themselves a little mountain, or kingdom, to their liking, and began going in circles around it. The Pentecostal movement got hold of something good 60 years ago, organized it into a denomination with a static theology, and has been going in circles ever since, getting nowhere. To prevent this from happening to Israel, God had a trumpet which meant to move on and follow the cloud and pillar of fire. Woe to that Israelite who decided that the little stream he had come to was sufficient for him and his little group and would not move on at the sound of the trumpet. For 1 Cor. 10:4 says that the rock which gave them their water followed Israel as they journeyed on through the wilderness. So, that one who stayed behind with his little stream and palm trees soon found that the Rock was gone, the stream dried up, and the palm trees withered. And he knew not which way to go to catch up with those who moved on. This is the sad condition of the denominations today. Each of them found a place in God to their liking, stopped, failed to hear the signal to move on, and now they find their living water gone, their stream of revelation dried up, and themselves going in circles trying to get blessings from what is now only a mud puddle. And talk about mud slinging� political campaigns can't hold a light to the churches of today. That's all they have, mud. Scandals, bitterness, jealousies, murmurings, backbitings, debates, and religious political maneuverings in high places. Their streams have dried up. They didn't hear, or didn't heed, the trumpets. But, thank God, there are those who heard, who heeded, and who did not have their tent stakes driven too deeply to pull up and move on. This place may look good, but when the trumpet sounds, you can rely on it that God has a better place ahead. Pentecost looked very good to me as a young man coming out of the dead denomination I was in. And I was right in the middle of Pentecost when the trumpet sounded again. Raised in the Headquarters city, a graduate of their Headquarters Bible School, being accepted as a writer for their various national publications, the fair-haired boy with a great future in the organization. But I heard the trumpets. And it sounded a chord deep within my heart, for I hungered desperately for more of God. I knew I had to move on. I though I could move on in God and still retain my position in the organization and the associations, but little did I know of the workings of the system of religious theology and ecclesiastical orders. But I learned. Many others have had the same experience as they heard and heeded the sound of the trumpet. However, there is still the danger today even for those who have "come out" that they will become satisfied, drive their stakes down, and not heed the next call. This is a never ending pilgrim journey through the wilderness, ever onward and upward to that cherished promised land of victory and rest. Many in so called "Latter Rain" have received prophecy, laying on of hands, ministries and gifts of the Spirit, and are now in the position where they are not moving on in God, afraid to journey further, not hearing the trumpet as it sounds loud and clear. But God has sworn that He will have a people who will enter Canaan, this much is established�will you be in it?
3. Preparation for War
Joel says (chapter 2), "Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain; let all the inhabitants of the land tremble; for the day of the Lord cometh, for it is nigh at hand." Numbers 10:9 says that the trumpets are also to sound an alarm for war, and that the Lord will remember them, and give them victory. Paul recognized this when he admonished the church to put on the whole armour of God in Ephesians 6. There was no protection for the back to them that ran, and no wings with which to fly away. But enough armour to win the victory against the greatest foe, even against principalities and powers in the heavens. But so many are not giving forth the message to prepare their people for the great battle ahead in the day of the Lord. Preachers are preaching "peace, peace, times are good, our property values and our membership are growing, and some sweet morning when the trumpet sounds we will fly away to a home somewhere in the sky." God gave a strong indictment against these false prophets in chapter 13 of Ezekiel, verse 4: "O Israel, thy prophets are like the foxes in the deserts. Ye have not gone up into the gaps, neither made up the hedge for the house of Israel to stand in the battle in the day of the Lord." He said that because these preachers seduced His people, saying "peace" and there was no peace, therefore God would deal with them strongly. Why? Because they have failed to warn God's people of the days ahead, that they might put on the whole armour of God.
This day of battle, the day of the Lord, is not a time for God's Army to fly to the sky, much as some would like to. Some long for this day who are not ready for it, and hear what the prophet Amos says in 5:18� "Woe unto you that desire the Day of the Lord! To what end is it for you? The day of the Lord is darkness and not light." And in Joel 2:1-2 "�the day of the Lord cometh, for it is nigh at hand; A day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains, a great people and a strong�" And Joel goes on to describe the Army of the Lord. Verse 11: "And the Lord shall utter His voice before His Army; for His camp is very great; for he is strong that executeth His Word; for the day of the Lord is great and very terrible; and who can abide it?" Notice in verse 2 that the Day of Tribulation and Darkness to the wicked shall be as the morning spread upon the mountains to the saints in Christ Jesus, the day of their greatest victory. Yes, it is a day of the shining forth of God's power and glory to those who have prepared for it. 1 Thess. 5:9 says that "God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain (full) salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ." In verse 2 you will see that Paul is talking about the Day of the Lord, commonly called the great Tribulation. In verse 8 we have a helmet and a breastplate, but no wings. Yes, this is the day to stand and fight. Not a physical warfare. For our weapons are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds. All hell trembles when it hears of this great Army, small in number, but mighty through God. This time God shall shake not only the earth, but also heaven (Heb. 12:26), until Satan's throne shall topple and fall, and the Sons of God shall regain what Adam lost in the garden, yea and much more as they go on in an illimitable God. "Look and behold, my people, and see man who has been trampled under foot of his enemy, who has been tormented and defeated, as he rises up in His God and overcomes. Yea, and they shall say Who is this that looketh forth as the morning, fair as the moon, clear as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners? �behold, it is the Lord's beloved, it is the One whom Satan feareth, it is the One for whom the whole creation groaneth and traveileth in pain to bring forth. Yea, he cometh with the sound of the trumpet, and with the banner of His God over him, for victory is his, and none shall stop him. Courage is in his heart, and the sword of the Lord in his hand. He shall wound and he shall heal, he shall judge with righteous judgment, and that which can be shaken shall be shaken, and that which cannot be shaken shall remain, and it shall be mine, saith God, and shall be my temple in that hour when I inhabit my people."
4. Celebration of the Feasts
There is to be corn and wine aplenty for these who overcome. Numbers 10:10 tells us that the fourth use of the trumpets is to announce the feasts, the times of rejoicing. And now the Feast of Tabernacles is nigh at hand. Send the message forth, God has riches for those who dare to believe and accept His bountiful supply. Joel 2:21-26 tells of the riches of His restored land. And in the first month (the first month in the civil year, the seventh month of the religious year) "the floors shall be full of wheat, and the fats shall overflow with wine and oil." In Exodus 23:16 and 34:22 we see that the feast of ingathering, or the feast of Tabernacles, which was the 7th month, was the end of the civil or agricultural year, and the start of a new day or new year. We see in Lev. 25:9 that the year of Jubilee began in the seventh month, at the Feast of Tabernacles. So, it is at the Feast of Tabernacles that Joel's prophecy will be fulfilled in its entirety. Pentecost was only the first-fruits of it, and Paul knew this, as he bring out in Romans 8:23. Look up and rejoice, saints of God, for the time of our deliverance is at hand. God is restoring all that was lost in the fall. The barns shall be full, great shall be the feasting in the days ahead.
Chapter 2 - THE HORNS OF THE ALTAR
As the penitent sinner came leading his lamb to the door of the Tabernacle seeking forgiveness for his sin, the first thing that caught his eye was a huge piece of furniture just inside the door. It was the great Brazen Altar standing in the midst of the Tabernacle yard squarely between him and the Tent where dwelt the Mercy seat. We read of it in Exodus 27:1-2� "And thou shalt make an altar of shittim wood, five cubits long, and five cubits broad the altar shall be foursquare: and the height thereof shall be three cubits. And thou shalt make thee horns of it upon the corners thereof: his horns shall be of the same and thou shalt overlay it with brass."
The number five in Scripture speaks of Grace, while three is the number of God's Divine Perfection. How symbolic this is! For here at the Cross (for the Brazen Altar represents the Cross of Christ) man meets with the divine perfection of God only by grace! Glory be to God, how wonderfully He has it pictured. Notice that in the description of the altar that there are horns on each corner, and I want to limit our study today just to these horns.
An Altar of Wood
Basically this altar and its horns were made of wood. This is symbolic of the human nature. Let me tell you, friends, that it was the MAN Christ Jesus who died on the Cross! God cannot die. It was man who died on that cross. And He died for man. Some say that it doesn't matter what we do in the flesh, sin as much as you want, for only the spirit shall be saved anyhow. But it's the human nature God is taking to the cross, and it is man God is dealing with. Now "Horns" in the Bible are symbolic of strength and power. This is shown in 1 Kings 22:11, 2 Chron. 18:10, as well as other places.
Now the horns first of all were made of wood. This tells us of the power God has invested in man. Before he fell into sin, man was the most powerful of all God's creation. The fear of man was upon every creature. He had dominion and ruled over all. I could not fully put into words here the strength, the wisdom, the ability, the beauty of this original man. But suffice it to say that God was very pleased with him. No scientist ever lived that had the wisdom of that first man, no athlete ever had his strength or ability, no poet could ever compare with his sensitive spirit. He was the crowing glory of God's creation.
Brass Over the Wood
Brass symbolizes Judgment. When sin came, judgment came. And the brass completely covered the wooden horns. If man was strong, the judgment was much stronger. And once man cried out: "My punishment is greater than I can bear." (Gen. 4:13) There was no escape, there was no part of man that was not under judgment. His sin had been great, and his judgment was great. He was not able to atone for it. Oh, friends, if I could make you see the awful terrors of sin, and the end of a sinful life, you would flee from wickedness and would embrace the Cross as your only hope. Men are prone to make light of judgment, to speak of "shoveling coal" or "having lots of company down there"� But I tell you it's not an amusing thing. The Bible says that "It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God" (Heb. 10:31). "God is angry with the wicked every day" (Psa. 7:11). With all his strength, and wisdom, and ability� man could not overcome the terrible judgment that was upon him. Man has tried many ways to get rid of the brass, to lighten the judgments of God or do away with them� such as the doctrines of "Eternal Security", "Reconciliation", "Free Grace", "Annihilation of the Wicked", "Purgatory", etc. But even if they were true, the brass remains, and sin must be judged. Beloved, there is only one thing that can spare us from the judgments of God and blot out the brass on the horns of the altar.
Blood Covers the Brass
Exodus 29:12 makes provision for blood to be put on the horns of the altar. In order for there to be blood, a life must be poured out. In the case of the Israelite, it was the life of the innocent lamb that was to be given. One who had done no sin of his own, but was only there as a substitute for the real sinner. But it was accepted. Until the perfect sacrifice came� "The Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world" (John 1:29). And hear me today� if man was strong, and if the judgment was much stronger� then the Blood of Jesus Christ that covers the brass of man's judgment is far stronger than the most terrible crime ever committed. When God said, "He is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him", He meant it! From the guttermost to the uttermost! Praise God, you're never too deep in sin, never too far gone for Him to redeem by His precious blood! For this blood covers over the brass, it is victorious, it is our only hope! "We were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold� but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without spot and without blemish" (1 Pet. 1:18). Friends, it cost something for this to be possible. It cost Christ that precious life� that sinless perfect life that continually glorified the Father. We who were rebels and enemies of God, now receive of that life. For in redeeming us, He is not just stripping off the brass and taking us back to the original state of Adam. Oh no. For we are not to receive of the Adamic life� but He is taking us far beyond that in His plan of redemption. He is giving us that divine life that was poured out for us on the Cross. "That we might manifest the life of Jesus in our mortal flesh" (2Cor. 4:11). Glory to God, what a plan! What a glorious destiny for Adam's race! It will be worth it all, every trial, every heartache, every sorrow, every affliction will be forgotten in the eternal glory of God's great purposes. The joy and blessing we have now is only a first-fruits of our inheritance! No one could do this but Christ Jesus our Lord!
Blood on the Earth
There was far more than enough blood than was needed to put on the brass. There is much more included in the plan of redemption than just the forgiveness of sins and a heaven somewhere. Thank God, there is no limit to what God is going to do, and the wonders of His Grace, "that in the ages to come He might shew the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus" (Eph. 2:7). One of the provisions made for the blood (Ex. 29:12) was that some was to be poured out upon the ground at the bottom of the altar. There is redemption provided for the physical creation. Yes, because of the blood of Christ, the curse shall be lifted from the whole earth. Rom. 8:19, 21 tells us that the glory which shall be revealed in us includes deliverance for all creation. "For the earnest expectation of the creation waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God. Because the creation itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God." Everything today in the physical creation wails in a minor key because of the curse, but thank God that as the Sons come into their glory, the universe shall sing a different song. It shall be a joyful song of victory and praise! Praises unto the Lamb, whose blood has redeemed His Own!
Chapter 3 - THE ARK IS COMING HOME!
The Beautiful Ark of the Covenant
People were shouting, trumpets were blowing, little children clapped their hands, and the King himself was dancing in the street! The entire nation was rejoicing this day. What was going on to cause such a glorious celebration? They were bringing the Ark of God back to Jerusalem on the shoulders of the priests! Many years it had been out of its place, after seven months in the hands of the enemy. But now it was coming home! Truly it was time of rejoicing.
The first mention in the Bible of this ark was in Exodus chapter 25 when God took Moses to Mount Sinai and gave him detailed instructions on how to build it, and showed him the pattern in the heavenlies. It was a shadow, an earthly physical representation of something that was already in existence in heaven. The very way it was built, the materials that were used, and the purpose for which it was used makes it very clear that this Ark was none other than an earthly type of our Lord Jesus Christ in His humanity.
I'll Meet with You There
God had given one place, and only one, where He would meet with man. Union of God and man could only come at the Ark, and that in the end of the year when man went beyond the veil into the Holiest Place. Until then, the blood covered them daily, and the Ark stood behind the Veil as a testimony and a promise. Yes, only in Jesus can there be any hope of man coming into union with Almighty God. "There is one God, and one mediator".
The two cherubim looked down at the mercy seat where the blood was placed, one at each end of the mercy seat. One looked forward to the blood, the other looked back at it. This is a picture of the Old and New Testament saints. None could be saved without the precious blood of Christ, not Adam, not Noah, not Abraham. No one. The Old Testament saints looked forward in faith to the day when Jesus would come and shed His blood. They received a good report through faith. We look back to Calvary, and thank God for His redemption!
The Ark was made of wood and gold. Not a mixture of wood and gold. You can melt silver and gold together, or iron and gold. But you cannot melt and mix wood and gold. It was first made of wood, complete and entire and perfect. Then it was overlaid with pure gold until no wood was seen. Wood speaks of humanity, gold is a symbol of deity. What a wonderful picture of Jesus! Man, complete and perfect, yet manifesting only the Father! Glory to God! Inside the Ark were contained three things, which we read about in Heb. 9:3-4�
"And after the second veil, the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all; Which had the golden censer, and the Ark of the covenant overlaid around about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron's rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant; And over it the cherubim of glory shadowing the mercy seat; of which we cannot now speak particularly."
Now these three things speak to us of that which is found in Christ. First, the golden pot with manna, which is a type of our daily bread coming from the hand of God. Jesus told the Syro-phonecian woman that healing was the children's bread. It took forty years and the judgments of God to kill off that old generation in the wilderness, for they had daily manna, and just didn't get sick with the diseases of the nations round about them. This is divine health, found in fullness in Christ.
Then Aaron's rod that budded (the story of which is told in Numbers chapter 17). This speaks of the authority of God through His true ministry who move and operate only by the power of that "endless life" (Heb 7:16). This was manifested in Jesus as He overcame death and arose from the tomb in resurrection life. God commanded that this rod be placed in the Ark, "to be kept as a token against the rebels". For no rebel shall inherit that Life.
The Law of God, the tables of the covenant, given to Moses on Sinai, were also kept in the Ark, showing that only in Jesus was the Law kept perfectly without fail, and only in Him can we be free from its judgment. Just as the first Adam failed, so the first tables of the Law were broken by Moses and the people almost as soon as it was given. But in the Last Adam was the unbroken Law kept intact, and its condemnation overcome and defeated.
The Ark of Thy Strength
Psalms 132:8 and 2 Chronicles 6:41 both speak of the Ark as being the Ark of God's strength, and His habitation, the place of His rest. This is true of Jesus. And this Ark in the midst of Israel represented God inhabiting His people in earthly form, in human form. This was true through the wilderness journey, as they placed the Ark in a tent, a temporary dwelling place that is subject to perish and dissolve. But Paul says: "For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens." (2 Corinthians 5:1). And tho God was content to dwell with His people in a tent, or tabernacle, being carried about on the shoulders of the priests (that is, being presented to the world through a ministry of sanctified human vessels), yet the final resting place came when a permanent Temple was built (of living stones). At this time the staves were removed from the Ark, and it was to travel no more.
Much more could be said about the Ark, and the picture it gives of Jesus. But what we really want to deal with is how the people of God lost this earthly Presence of God, and how it was restored. For this unveils to us some truths concerning the end time Restoration.
The Crossing of Jordan
Just a brief word here of Joshua bringing the Ark across Jordan at the time the people entered into Canaan and their inheritance. The order in which this was done is very significant, in the light of what we now know about this Ark and what it represents. A whole message could be written about this crossing of Jordan, but there is only one point that I want to make here. Read the story in Joshua 3:2-4�
"And it came to pass after THREE days, that the officers went throughout the host; And they commanded the people saying, When ye see the Ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, and the priests the Levites bearing it, then ye shall remove from your place, and go after it."
"Yet there shall be a space between you and it, about TWO THOUSAND cubits by measure: come not near unto it that ye may know the way by which ye must go: for ye have not passed this way heretofore."
Notice they were to keep a space between them and the Ark, so that they would have something to keep their eyes on and know which way to go. Otherwise, if there was no pattern or example, some of the people might start north, some back south, and some east. And everyone would be in confusion. Confusion was stopped by keeping your eye on the Ark. And beloved, Jesus is the divine Pattern that God has given us to keep you eye on in relation to crossing Jordan and entering the Inheritance, the Promised Land. Did He go down into death (Jordan) and conquer it? Yes! TWO THOUSAND years ago! And the people were to follow Him in crossing Jordan dry-shod two thousand years later. Paul couldn't do it. John couldn't do it. Not that they didn't have faith. But God had a pattern, and they had to wait for the pattern. Only by having Jesus as the divine example, can we know the Way. Notice that the Ark remained in the dry bed of the river and held the waters back until all the people passed over. "If that same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead, dwell in you�" Yes, by the power of His divine Life we conquer death. And when Jesus joins the people on the other side of Jordan, the waters of Jordan return as before, and that's it!
The Ark of God is Taken
Israel had no king, and they had no prophet. Eli was their priest. He had been a good priest, in his day, but now his eyes were dim and he was heavy with flesh. He was 98 years old, and his sons Phinehas and Hophni were wicked and were corrupting the people, and Eli could not restrain them. Eli had judged Israel forty years, but the time had come when God determined to raise up a new order, a prophetic ministry, and utterly destroy the old order.
God began this work by suddenly removing His Presence from the old order. The Ark of God dwelt behind the Veil in the Tabernacle, which was at this time at Shiloh. During a losing battle with the Philistines, the elders of the people sent for the Ark, hoping that God would be forced to save them from their enemies to protect His Ark. But when the Philistines saw the Ark, they fought with fearful desperation and defeated the children of Israel and captured the Ark of God.
The Battle with Dagon
Now that the Ark of God is in the hands of the enemy, who is going to protect it, defend it? So many preachers feel that they are the "defenders of the faith", and that if they were not on the job, the Word of God would fail and never be brought to pass. Brother, you're not going to defend the faith and protect His Word� it is going to protect YOU in the hour of Jacob's trouble! The Philistines had the Ark in their possession for seven months, and it meant nothing but trouble and plagues for them.
They first took it to the city of Ashdod and put it in the house of Dagon, and set it alongside the idol of Dagon, the fish-god. Now the word "Dagon" comes from a word meaning "squirming", that is, "moving by the vibratory action of the tail" (Strong's concordance). Many of our young people in America today are unknowingly worshipping Dagon. If you don't believe it, turn on a TV and watch one of the Youth dance programs. Other than this chapter we are studying, Dagon is only mentioned twice in the Bible. Once when the Philistines put out the eyes of Samson and made great sacrifices to Dagon; and then when they killed Saul and hung his head in the temple of Dagon. Both men of God had failed the Lord.
Well, the Ark did not fail. It sat in the house of Dagon one day and one night, and in the morning they discovered their god Dagon had fallen down before the Ark on his face. They sat him back on his pedestal, and the Ark sat there the second day and night. On the morning of the THIRD day, they came in to discover Dagon fallen down again, and this time his power was stripped. His hands and head were broken off, leaving only a stump. What a picture of the three days Jesus spent in the domain of Satan, not being defeated, but conquering death and hell and stripping the devil of all his power! And on the THIRD day the Ark came forth from the house of Dagon victorious in glory, leaving a defeated foe behind.
Carried by Milk Cows
After seven months of torment, the Philistines decided that they were being plagued because of the Ark. So they called in their priests and diviners to see what to do. They were advised to put it on a cart, hitch a couple of milk cows to it, tie their calves up at home, and see what happened. Now it was against nature for the cows to leave their calves. If they headed back toward Bethshemesh, it would certainly be a miracle and proof that God was in it.
Now the men of Bethshemesh, who were Israelites, rejoiced to see the Ark on its way back to its rightful place. This was not yet far enough, but they seemed to think so. They broke the cart in pieces, made a big fire with it, and offered the cows as a burnt offering unto the Lord. They were very happy with the present Revival of that day, but they trespassed God's divine order and looked into the Ark. For which God judged them severely. So the divine order of God, and His Presence, passed on to another people, the people of Kirjathjearim.
Eleazar the Priest of the Ark
The Ark was brought to the house of Abinadab, and one of his sons was sanctified to keep it and take care of it. The name of Eleazar, the son, means "whom God aids", and Abinadab means "of nobility". So here was one of a royal line, a royal priesthood, who had the help of God as he kept the Presence of God in his house. They were not yet in divine order, as the Ark was not yet brought back to the place where it belonged, but they did the best they could in their day. It stayed in this place for twenty years.
David Builds a Cart
After David, the anointed of God, ascended to the Throne, God gave him great victory over his enemies. Until all the nations round about feared David, and his fame was spread abroad. Yes, there was a great deliverance Revival, many mighty miracles, many healings, demons cast out, the dead raised, and thousands saved. Even the ungodly world could see things happen right on television that were hard to explain away. And the fame of this thing spread abroad. But divine order had not yet come to the Church, nor had the Head of the Church been given His rightful place. With all his success, David had not yet brought the Ark of God back to Jerusalem. But there's a real desire in his heart to do this.
"So David gathered all Israel together� to bring the Ark of God from Kirjathjearim." David has a great "fellowship" of the brethren gathered together, and they decide this thing must be organized. So they build a new cart. A NEW cart. Yes, they had lots of machinery, but it was a brand new thing. It wasn't a bit like the old dead thing they had come out of. But wait, when you got right down and took a close look at this cart� it had four wheels, a bed, a wagon tongue for the oxen� in fact, it really looked a whole lot just like the one the Philistines had used. Now God had allowed the Philistines to use that method to get the Ark this far, but He hadn't let them bring it to perfection by that route, and neither would Israel. In fact, what God had allowed in the Philistines' ignorance, He judged severely when Israel tried to duplicate them. Because Israel had the anointing, they had the priests available to carry it in the proper manner, and they had the Word of God on how it should be done. "To whom much is given, much shall be required." This makes it a terrible thing for people with the heavenly anointing to fail to move on in God�s divine order.
The Man of Strength Falls
Bible names are very important, for God ordained their names for special reasons. He not only sent angels to name Jesus and John the Baptist, but He changed the names of Abram and Jacob to fit their character and future. Some Bibles have a section telling the meaning of Bible names, as does Strong's Concordance. Ahio's name means "brotherly", and Uzzah means "strength". I mention them, because they were the men chosen to drive the cart and the oxen. They were sons of Abinadab, brother to Eleazar who had kept the Ark for twenty years. I don't know where Eleazar is, whose name means "whom God aids." For God wasn't helping this mess.
They have their machinery all in operation now. A great big cart, plenty big enough now to get the job done, with more and bigger churches being built, and lots of Bible Colleges and Seminaries planned, to turn out better educated preachers. And plenty of oxen, their names all signed up (make them a deacon, an elder, or give them a job so they will be sure and stay in the church). But these oxen (beasts of burden) were being "driven". When you drive oxen, you generally use a big "bull whip". And you can believe the Uzzah had a big whip, and don't you dare get out of line or take a wrong step, or the presbyter will sure use it on you!
Ahio ("brotherly") goes out ahead of the cart. Everything looks fine, it all looks like a big "brotherly" fellowship. But take another look a little further down the line, and you will see Uzzah ("strength") as he cracks the whip and keeps the oxen in line. Believe me, it may just start out to be a brotherly fellowship, but give it a little time to get a little further down the road, and you'll begin to hear the crack of the whip, and you'll find out the strength of this system and its' machinery. "Now look, you oxen have to get us back into divine order and bring about a perfect church. You just supply the grit, grace, and greenbacks, and then see how fast we Uzzahs will get this Revival moving". Ever hear anything like that? Well glory.
The Oxen Stumble
David was happy, and all Israel was singing with all their might. It sounded like real revival. Anyone who had dared to step up and try to stop that procession would have gotten a spear through him quicker than you can say: "Organization". But what they didn't know and soon found out, was that this system was not going to bring them to their desired destination. They have the right idea about getting the Ark back, and they are going in the right direction, but using the wrong means. They are doing it in the strength of man's ways, and not according to the Word.
And the oxen stumbled. Well, you should know that they couldn't go far under that system, for God had another plan. He has a ministry that will bring in divine order, and it will be a plural ministry, not just one man standing on the cart cracking his whip. He has a Body specially anointed for this, the Word is full of it, but men have just not gotten around to finding out what the Word says about it. Yes, the living manifestation of Christ is coming to the Church, but it is coming in on the shoulders of His Body, not sitting astride the beast system of man-made machinery and organized confusion, being pulled by poor "oxen" who don't have the slightest idea where they are going. God is sick of that sort of thing, and to tell you the truth so am I.
The Strength of Man is Smitten
When the oxen stumbled, Uzzah decided that if this Revival or move of God was going any further, he would have to use his "strength" to keep it on an even keel. Maybe someone had prophesied that he was The Chief Apostle. So he reached out his hand to hold the Ark. But God had had enough of this foolishness, and they had come to the threshing floor of Nachon (which means "prepared"). And God was prepared now to thresh this thing out. You've gone as far as you're going under this present man-made system. Either get in divine order, or plan on staying in the realm you're in. If you obtain the living Presence of the Christ to any greater degree than you now have, you'll have to come into a new order which God has ordained already in the Book.
Well, David was quite provoked because God wouldn't honor his zealous efforts and all his organized machinery. So he called the name of that place "Perez-uzzah", for he felt that God had made a "breach" on all his strength. And he decided that they had made some pretty good progress, and that this was far enough anyhow. After all, in this twentieth century we've built more Bible schools, more churches, sent more missionaries, built a larger bank account, kicked out more heretic preachers, printed more literature, and broadcast more sermons than almost any other "cart" on the road! So I guess we can stop here awhile and count our Crowns. Well glory.
After the Due Order
Praise God. After a few months, we find David spending some time with the Word of God, and as he gets over in the book of Numbers, he finds what God said about moving the Ark. So he throws his old order constitution and by-laws out the window, gets the REAL Book out and begins to read it to the elders. Read now in 1 Chronicles 15.
"Then David said, None ought to carry the Ark of God but the Levites: for by them hath the Lord chosen to carry the Ark of God, and to minister unto Him forever."
"And David called for ZADOK, and ABIATHAR the priests, and for the Levites, for URIEL, ASAIAH, and JOEL, SHEMAIAH, and ELIEL, and AMMINADAB."
"And said unto them, Ye are the chief of the fathers of the Levites: sanctify yourselves, both ye and your brethren, that ye may bring up the Ark of the Lord God of Israel unto the place that I have prepared for it."
"For because ye did it not at the first, the Lord our God made a breach upon us, for that we sought Him not after the due order."
"And the children of the Levites bare the Ark of God upon their shoulders with the staves thereon, as Moses commanded according to the word of the Lord."
Now here is an amazing thing� when I checked the meaning of the names of these Levites who were called upon to carry the Ark, I found their names meant: "Light of God", "Jehovah has made", "Jehovah is Might", "Jehovah has heard", "To Whom God is Strength", and "Of the Prince". Glory to God, what a gathering! No one moving in his own strength, or in a one man ministry, but all moving together and depending on God for strength and light, knowing that God has heard, that it is He that has made this thing, that this thing is of the Prince, and that He is our strength! Beloved, I tell you God has a glorious company of Sons that the world knows nothing of! And when God gives the order and brings these sons together in the Spirit to carry that Ark and manifest the very life and presence of Christ, you will see the greatest Move of the Spirit that has ever hit this old world! Hallelujah!
A Plural Ministry
Notice that the Levites named, along with the priests Zadok and Abiathar, made up a group of eight. EIGHT is the number of resurrection and a new beginning. And they all needed one another. Each was a chief in his own right, each had a tremendous ministry and much experience. But God had brought them to the place where they had to confess that they needed their brother. For no one man can carry this Ark alone. The staves in it were proof enough that God's intention from the beginning was for this thing to be carried by a plural ministry. This crucifies the flesh, for no one man, such as Uzzah, gets the glory for this Manifestation of the Sons of God, as the mighty power of Christ shines through the human vessels that He has chosen, and brings the glory of God back into the Church, Jerusalem.
Another thing. Notice that they had their hands full of staves. They weren't busy pulling swords and jabbing at each other. The work at hand was so important they had no time for minor differences of opinion on how the various synagogues under their jurisdiction were to be run. Oh, beloved, when will the preachers stop "driving the oxen", and get busy flowing together in a plural operation of the thing God is after? Which one of these eight men was the "Chief carrier"? Which one had hold of the most important part of the stave, and who was the "Chairman or moderator of the meeting"? Who cares? They had heard the word of the King, direct from the Book. Forget who is going to be "Pastor", "Apostle" or "Chief Elder", and grab hold of your section of the staves. I can't move far without you, my brother if you have been chosen for this great ministry. And you may as well get used to having me around, for when the Ark gets to Jerusalem, by His grace I'll be there.
A Cloud Fills the House
Yes, the plural ministry, moving in divine order, brought the Ark to Jerusalem. And Solomon built a Temple for it to rest in permanently. Chapter 5 of 2 Chronicles tells the story of how they finally finished the Temple and brought the Ark into it. It says that they then pulled the staves out of the Ark, for it was to be moved no more. The glory of His Presence was permanently placed in His Body, His Temple, for they had finally been "caught up" to the fullness of His glorious Presence, "and so shall we ever be with the Lord."
And as the Ark comes into its' rightful place in the Temple made without the sound of a hammer, we see something happening� (2 Chronicles 5:14)
"Then the House was filled with a Cloud, even the House of the Lord; So that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud; for the glory of the Lord had filled the House of God!"
Lift up your voice and shout aloud, saints, for the Ark is coming down the road! He is coming in the CLOUDS OF GLORY, on the shoulders (government) of a plural ministry! All the world will be blessed and set free, but blessed are ye that are faithful to the High Calling of God in Christ Jesus!
Chapter 4 - CLEANSING OF THE TEMPLE
The disciples looked at the Master with curiosity and amazement. They had never seen him like this before. What was he going to do? He stood in the great door of the Temple, feet spread apart, and breathing deeply as he surveyed the scene. He had climbed the steep paths of Mount Moriah with his disciples in great anticipation. They were approaching the house of God; the Temple of the most High, and the Spirit of God that rested upon him quickened his pulse as they came near to this great symbolic structure. He had just recently defeated Satan and returned from the wilderness in the power of the Spirit. Water had been turned into wine at Cana, and now it was the time of the Passover, and they had gone to Jerusalem to worship. The Passover lamb was to be offered, and this time was especially of much significance to Jesus. He had come to the Temple with great expectation in his heart.
What a disappointment as he stood in the doorway and looked around on this scene of confusion. Oxen were bawling, sheep were bleating, some doves had gotten loose and were flying wildly through the temple seeking a way out, and the stench of manure was nauseating. Men were arguing violently over money, tempers were flaring, and hard words were flying back and forth. Here and there pious pilgrims were vainly seeking a quiet place in which to pray. The Temple priests, oblivious to the confusion, were making a great show of religious form in their long robes and broad phylacteries. Proud Pharisees stood where they could be easily seen and loudly prayed their long and eloquent prayers.
The Purging Prophet
It was this scene that Jesus now surveyed. He looked just outside the door and saw a pile of small cords that had been discarded. Picking them up, he began to braid them into a whip until he had a good sized scourge. He did not speak to his disciples; in fact he seemed to have forgotten them. His jaw was set, and beads of sweat stood out on his forehead. He made a loop on the end of the scourge and looped it around his wrist, took a firm grip on it and stepped forward. A word of caution rose to Andrew's lips, and he started to reach for the Master to stop him. But James pulled Andrew back and said: "Let him alone, I feel that God is in this."
Suddenly he was striding among the sheep and cattle, untying them and shouting at them, wielding the scourge, driving them toward the main entrance of the temple. Each time he passed a cage full of doves, he opened the latch, turned it upside down and dumped the doves out. At first the temple merchants did not know what was happening, and then there was complete confusion and chaos. Some ran to try to stop the beasts from running outside, but to no avail. Others finally saw who it was that was causing the commotion, and ran to stop him. One grabbed him by the arm and swung him around. There was an anointed glow on his face mixed with the dust and sweat as he turned to face them.
They reeled backward several steps in awe and fear as his voice sounded forth with authority: "Take these things hence; make not my Father's house an house of merchandise!" With that he began turning over the tables of the moneychangers, and piles of coins both foreign and Jewish began to scatter across the temple floor. As coins began rolling about, the merchants frantically chased them here and there, trying to gather up their profits. The multitudes that gathered began to jeer at the merchants on their hands and knees picking up their money, and applauded this courageous young man that had done what many knew should have been done long ago.
Jesus stood on a stairway and began to teach. Part of the disciples were busy helping to get the last of the sheep and doves out of the temple, while John, James, Peter, and a couple others gathered around Jesus as he taught. John whispered to his brother: "I heard the chief priests and scribes talking about killing the Master. We had better stick close to him in case there is trouble." But there was no trouble. The power of his words held them at bay. "My house shall be called a house of prayer" he said, "but you have made it a den of thieves!", and he looked boldly in the direction of the chief priests at the edge of the crows. The temple had never before seen such a day as this.
The Zeal of Thine House
"The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up!" This word spoken by the Psalmist and quoted again in John 2:17 referred to the Lord Jesus. He was very zealous for the House of the Lord. And why not? He was the one that God had promised David who would come and build the real Temple of God, the living Temple in which God would dwell. Therefore he was zealous also of the temple at Jerusalem, which was a type of that eternal house of God.
Of prime importance in the life and ministry of Jesus was the cleansing of the temple in Jerusalem. When he appeared on the scene, things were in an unclean filthy mess at the temple. Devout Jews were coming from many nations to make their offerings to God. The wicked priests, always ready to make a fast profit, hit on the idea of changing the visitors' foreign money into Jewish currency at a big gain, telling them that God would not accept their foreign money as an offering. Then they began selling doves and oxen to the pilgrims, telling the pilgrims that God would only accept the "sanctified" animals bought in the temple for an offering. Thus, the priesthood was making merchandise of the house of God until it had truly become "a den of thieves."
A Scourge of Small Cords
At such a time as this, Jesus made his appearance, and things began to happen. Twice Jesus cleansed the temple, and drove out the animals and money changers. Once in the beginning of his ministry, recorded in John 2:13-17, and again near the close (Mark 11:15, Luke 19:45, Matthew 21:12). It is interesting to note that he not only drove out those that sold, but also those that bought. This may seem strange, but beloved, let me warn you that not only the present day corrupt priesthood who are making merchandise of God's people, but also those people who flock to them and give them the support to keep going, will be kept out of God's living Temple.
John says that he made a scourge of small cords. Thank God for the "small cords" today that He is binding together to use as a ministry in His hand to cleanse His Temple. For all that took place in that time is a picture of what God is doing in these last days in the purifying of the house of God.
Ye Are the Temple of God
The Apostle Paul tells us in Ephesians 2:19-22 that we are the true Temple of God, built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ being the Chief corner stone. We are builded together for a habitation of God through the Spirit. We read in 2 Corinthians 6:16 "For ye are the Temple of the living God." And again in 1 Corinthians 3:16 "Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?" Verse 17 goes on to say: "If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are."
So we understand that the real Temple of God that Christ is building, is made of living stones, people like you and I. We are told in 1 Peter 2:5 "Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ." So in order to see the great work of cleansing that God is doing in the last days on His house, we will look at the cleansing of that natural temple, which is a shadow of the real.
"Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me; and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to His temple." (Malachi 3:1) Here the prophet promised a coming of the Lord to those who make the Temple company, those living stones that offer up spiritual sacrifices to God by the Spirit. But he goes on to warn them that his coming would be as a fire, and that he would purge them, and purify them, and they might come to a state of righteousness. His house needs a cleansing, and God is now raising up a Priesthood that shall be fully qualified to do the work. It will not operate under the power of the old order, but it shall have the power of an endless life. It is a Melchisedec order.
The King Priest Ministry
Melchisedec, King of Salem and Priest of the Most High God, is seldom mentioned in scripture. In Genesis, chapter 14 he is shown bringing bread and wine to Abraham after his victorious battle with his enemies. In Psalms chapter 110 we find a prophecy concerning Christ having a priesthood after the order of Melchisedec. And in chapters 5, 6, and 7 of Hebrews the Apostle shows how that this great man was a type of the endless priesthood of Christ. This is the only book in the New Testament that mentions Melchisedec, although the writer of Hebrews tells us that he has many things to say about this man, but hard to be uttered because they were dull of hearing. Truly there are many glorious things about this man's ministry that the Spirit is bringing forth in these end times. But what was it that was so deep and such a mystery that the Jewish Christians could not understand? He tells them how that Christ Jesus was a priest forever after the order of Melchisedec, operating by the power of an endless life. He tells them that this priesthood does not come by natural birth, and that this priesthood operates beyond the Veil. Then what else is there to it? It sounds simple enough. Then what was the mystery those Jewish Christians could not receive because of their dull hearing? It was the mystery that Paul unveiled to the Gentiles, the mystery that had bee hidden from ages and from generations, of "Christ in you, the hope of glory". The Jewish church knew that Jesus had ascended on high, and that He was now their High Priest. They could receive this teaching. But they knew little of Christ in His Body, the Church. The mystery of Melchisedec was that this ministry of King-Priest was to operate in a body of people, the complete and mature Body of Christ, the Overcomer who had eaten of the hidden manna, and entered into that beyond the Veil with Jesus the forerunner.
A Royal Priesthood
In Hebrews chapter 7 we read: "For this Melchisedec, King of Salem, Priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him; to whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all;" It goes on to say that he was King of righteousness, and King of peace, and being "made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually." Who is it that is made like unto the Son of God but "them that love God� who are the called according to his purpose", even those whom God has predestinated to be his "brethren" (Romans 8:28-29), being conformed to the image of His Son. Praise God for this High Calling!
Notice that Melchisedec was both King and Priest. This was not true of the old order of Levi. Priests were never put in as kings, and kings were not allowed to minister in the priest's office. The two were kept separate. But now we see a new order, a new ministry of never-ending life, a King-Priest ministry.
The Apostle Peter calls us "A chosen generation, a royal priesthood" (1 Peter 2:9). He says that this royal priesthood is a people who have been called out of darkness into His marvelous light, who in times past were not a people, but now are the people of God. There is no mistake as to who he is speaking of. Earlier in the chapter he says that these are the living stones which make up the house of God, and are a holy priesthood.
Kings and Priests unto God
The testimony is given in Revelation 1:6 that Jesus Christ has made us Kings and Priests unto God and His Father. And a new song is sung to the Lamb in Revelation 5:9-10� "Thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; and hast made us unto our God Kings and Priests; and we shall reign on the earth".
What is the value of a King-Priest ministry? We see a beautiful illustration of this in the Old Testament, which we shall examine in a few minutes. You see, many times Israel would have faithful priests, such as Ezekiel, who would desire to lead the people to God. But because of a wicked king on the throne, the priesthood had no power to function in their calling as they ought. The king dwelled on Mount Zion, and this is where the laws were made, and this is where the authority rested. The Temple was on Mount Moriah, and this is where the priesthood ministered. Zion was the highest hill in Jerusalem, higher than Moriah, and the word of the king was stronger than that of the priest. "Where the word of a king is, there is power; and who may say unto him, What doest thou?" (Ecclesiastes 8:4).
Without the king behind them, the priesthood was powerless to cleanse the Temple, clean up the worship of Israel and have lasting revival. Many kings built groves for themselves, and led the people into idol worship. Ahab and Jezebel, for instance, promoted the worship of Baal. The Levitical priests were powerless to hold back the tide of false religion, and it took a prophet like Elijah to break their stranglehold on Israel.
Now, if you have opportunity to do so, please stop reading this message right here and read 2 Chronicles chapter 29 in your Bible before going any further. Read the entire chapter to get the picture of what happened back there in the cleansing of the temple.
Now that you have read the chapter, I won't have to quote the entire chapter, which would take up too much space here. But I want to point out some principles which will guide us in our spiritual application. Notice that the temple had fallen into terrible disrepair under King Ahaz, who was a wicked king. Chapter 28 tells us his abominations, and it says that "The Lord brought Judah low because of Ahaz king of Judah". Ahaz sacrificed unto the gods of Damascus, he cut in pieces the vessels of the house of God, and shut up the doors of the house of the Lord, and made him altars in every corner of Jerusalem. He also made molten images for Baalim.
Now during the time Ahaz was doing this, his young son (Hezekiah) was growing up under the influence of a godly mother. The wife of Ahaz, Abijah, was the daughter of Zechariah. This was not the prophet of the book of Zechariah, as he came along more than a century later. Her father was probably the Zechariah of 2 Chronicles 26:5 who walked in the king's court and had understanding in the visions of God. At any rate, Hezekiah grew up with a desire to see the house of God restored. But until he came to the throne himself, all he could do was to desire it, and make plans.
Beloved, I want to tell you that there is a people now who are making plans for the cleansing of God's house. They are destined to sit on the Throne of God, and while yet now in their minority, they are being inspired by the Word of the Lord. Another still sits as the "prince of this world", but they are getting ready to take over his throne. For his time is short, and he must surely go. Thus saith the Lord! This people have a burning desire to see that glorious church come into existence, without spot or wrinkle. They have seen the great need of God's people, but have not had the authority needed to bring a full deliverance to creation.
Open the Doors
When Hezekiah came to the throne, he wasted no time. He did not say "Well, now that I am king, I will take a trip around the world, marry some wives, spend some of the money in the royal treasury, get my rewards and have a wonderful marriage supper in the sky". No, as soon as he received his throneship power and authority, his first concern was for the house of God. He took no trips, and did not worry about rewards or a supper. Verse 3 says that in the FIRST year of his reign, in the FIRST month, he opened the doors of the house of the Lord, and repaired them. First things first. "Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lifted up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in". (Psalms 24:4) Other places we find praise being the door or entrance into the house of the Lord. In Psalms 100:4 we read: "Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise." There is a real ministry needed to bring back true worship and praise to God's people. Much form, rituals, and ceremonies (some of it Pentecostal form) have replaced real Spirit anointed praise and worship.
Notice that he opened the doors before the temple ever started getting cleaned out. Just because a church seems to have heavenly services, and Spirit led worship, with many gifts and manifestations in evidence, is no proof that there is no need for a cleansing work in that church. Some have stumbled when they have seen the glory of God manifested in the services, then found a lack of real Christian attributes in the lives of some of the saints. Stumble not. Just pray that God will hasten the breaking forth of this Melchisedec King-Priest ministry.
Into the East Street
The next thing Hezekiah did was to bring the priesthood together into the East street. East speaks of the dawning of a new day. And beloved, this is a new day! A glorious new day! A day when the Priesthood is being brought together to a Kingship authority. No doubt there were priests under Ahaz who had wanted to clean up the house of God, but they did not have the authority. It took the word of a king to make this thing work. Hallelujah!
Notice (verse 5) that first the priesthood had to be sanctified before the house could be sanctified. Yes, there is a work to be done on the ministry, before that ministry shall ever be able to fully cleanse the house of God. Then the command was given to "carry forth the filthiness out of the Holy Place". Filthiness in the HOLY Place? Surely not! But it was so.
Oh, if we could only see ourselves as through the eyes of a holy God. None would ever be proud, nor vaunt himself arrogantly again. God help us to see that deep in our Holy Place we are full of the abominations of Babylon, and the accumulations of trash and dirt and earthly carnal thoughts and practices. Just as rats and roaches hide in trash and filth, so do evil spirits abide in the darkness of a temple that is full of earthly desires and lusts. All this must be cleaned out before divine order can be restored and the glory of the Lord manifested.
The Lord hath Chosen You
Verse 11 tells us that there has been a divine choosing for this work of cleansing. Yes, God is getting a body of Sons ready to move. A company of Kings and Priests are now groaning and traveiling, and getting ready to come to the Throne. Goth hath chosen. It is His work. Praise our sovereign Lord! We are to minister unto Him in the Holiest Place, even as the sons of Zadok in chapter 44 of Ezekiel. There is a place not every one shall come to. There is a ministry not everyone shall know. It is for those who are "called, and chosen, and faithful". It takes us behind the Veil, into the Presence of the Almighty.
But first the Temple must be cleansed. And notice the process, for this is important to us who are involved in this last day ministry, that we might know what is the pattern of the Word. Verse 16 gives us a key picture. Notice that there is a priesthood that goes right down into the Holy Place and digs out the filthiness, then a further ministry of the Levites that carries it from the court out to the brook Kidron.
Uncovering the Hidden Secrets
Yes, God is bringing forth a ministry that will uncover the secrets of men's hearts, until there will be no hiding place from the face of him that sits upon the Throne. Not only will they have the ministry of the Priest to go right down into the Holy Place and uncover the filthiness, but they will have the authority of the King to deliver the house of that evil. This is the Melchisedec King-Priest order.
Jesus walked right into the holy place of men's hearts, until no evil deeds or thoughts could be hidden from him. He exposed their secrets, ripped the cover off of their sins, and brought the filthiness to light. And he also had the authority and the life of God to deliver them and set them free. Praise God!
Since we are to be involved in this ministry, and since we are not dealing in this hour with a natural temple with physical dirt and trash, we need to take a practical look at how this ministry is going to operate. Notice that it took eight days to cleanse the house of the Lord. Eight is the number that speaks of the resurrection and a new beginning. Then eight more days and their work is finished. There is a new life and resurrection power behind this ministry. A new beginning for the house of God.
Does It Work?
I want you to see a local church where this ministry is operating. The people come together, and have come into a real spirit of worship and praise as the doors of the temple are opened in the Holy Ghost. But there is yet much to be cleansed from the hearts and lives of those who make up the temple of God. See them as the Holy Ghost begins to sweep over the congregation. Hearts are melting, tears are flowing, praise is going forth unto God.
Then God begins to move forth in a vision. The one God uses as a seer begins to move through the corridors of the life of one of the congregation. He begins to speak forth that which he is seeing, and secrets of the heart are made manifest. The filthiness is brought out of the "holy place" and exposed to the congregation in the outer court. As God speaks, suddenly someone breaks from their seat and falls in the altar, weeping and confessing that they are guilty. Then the evil is carried to "Kidron", as several intercessors gather around one who has been exposed and lay hands upon him to bring deliverance and peace. Soon there is victory, and shouts of praise. God's house is being cleansed.
I know that we have already seen a measure of just such as this. But it has only been a drop in the bucket. The need is great. We have needed the King-Priest ministry, a greater ministry than we have ever seen, one on the order of Melchisedec. Just such a ministry is scheduled to come to God's house. There is to be a thorough cleansing. And it is to be real and definite, not just theological suppositions. It is to serve a practical purpose, and do a practical work in lives.
Get In or Get Out
Another illustration. Let us look at Brother Bob who has gotten involved in something that is not holy and clean. But he has hardened his heart against conviction, covers up his sin and goes on to church. During the service, Sister Mary goes to him with tears streaming down her face, and says: "Brother Bob, the Lord shows me that at such and such a time last evening you were involved in such and such activity. The Lord insists that it is imperative that you repent of this and be cleansed of this iniquity." Well, friend, Brother Bob is going to do one of two things� he is either going to let the spiritual priesthood carry his sin to Kidron, or he is going to take his sin and leave the house of God. Either way, God is going to have a clean house.
Isaiah cried with a prophetic voice when he said: "Awake, awake; put on thy strength, O Zion; put on they beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city; for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean" (Isaiah 52:1). Too long have our churches been filled with the uncircumcised in heart, people who have never had a real born again experience. And far too long have unclean spirits run rampant in the most spiritual of churches. There is to be a cleansing. God will have a church without spot or wrinkle. Many cannot believe that this will ever happen on this earth, but I can tell you that right now God is preparing a ministry to bring this about. A King-Priest ministry. A royal priesthood. One that goes beyond the Veil, and comes forth in the power of an endless life.
True Worship Restored
Back to Hezekiah and 2 Chronicles 29. The house has been cleansed, and the vessels prepared and sanctified and put in their place. Divine order is restored. Then in verse 20 they begin to worship the Lord again. What a time! What a revival! Look at verse 27: "And Hezekiah commanded to offer the burnt-offering upon the altar. And when the burnt-offering began, the song of the Lord began also with the trumpets, and with the instruments ordained of David king of Israel".
The burnt offering speaks of a total death to the flesh and self life. When the burnt offering begins, the song of the Lord begins. And the trumpets sound forth. Talk about preaching! Brother, we will have something to preach about! We will have a perfect church to present to the world, and God will bring them in by the thousands. Babylon will not hold her captives. They will flock to Zion by multitudes. They will find reality and truth, instead of sham and hypocrisy. They will find deliverance and a new life, instead of theological confusion and bondage. There will be singing and rejoicing.
Notice how many times in the rest of the chapter it tells how they praised God and bowed their heads and worshipped. "And they sang praises with gladness, and they bowed their heads and worshipped." (verse 30) And finally in verse 35: "And also the burnt-offerings were in abundance, with the fat of the peace offerings, and the drink-offerings were in abundance, with the fat of the peace offerings, and the drink-offerings for every burnt-offering. So the service of the house of the Lord was set in order. And Hezekiah rejoiced, and all the people, that God had prepared the people: for the thing was done suddenly."
Prepare For a Sudden Work
Yes, God will do a quick work. The time is at hand. Get ready. Be prepared. Don't be caught building up Babylon. And don't be found at home sulking, refusing to take your place with those people who are moving on in God in this hour. If you are in a place where you have no fellowship in your locality, and are unable to find such a ministry, don't fret. Rest in God. He knows where you are, and He will take care of you. He will not count you out of His Temple program because of your geographical handicap. Just be yielded in your spirit, and submissive to His will. The Holy Ghost will lead you. But watch and pray. It is at hand.
Chapter 7 - THE HIDDEN MANNA
The Missing Ark� The Hidden Manna
No Holy of Holies in the Tabernacle? No Ark of the Covenant? Impossible! But it was true! In 2 Chronicles chapter 1 we read that "Solomon and all the congregation with him, went to the high place that was at Gibeon; for there was the tabernacle of the congregation of God, which Moses the servant of the Lord had made in the wilderness." But it goes on to say that David had brought the Ark of God, which was wrapped and covered by the most beautiful Veil, and placed it under a tent at Jerusalem. So that when the priests went into the Tabernacle to worship and to light the candlesticks or lampstands, there was no Veil, no Holy of Holies compartment, no Ark or Mercy seat. They could slay their rams, their bulls, their lambs� but there was no Mercy seat on which to place the blood. The Day of Atonement had no meaning to them. The Feast of Tabernacles was a mockery.
Moses had the Tabernacle built according to the pattern showed to him in Mount Sinai, and for forty years in the wilderness the children of Israel had worshipped and lived around this beautiful type and shadow of New Testament reality. When Joshua took Israel across Jordan into the Promised Land, he set the Ark of the Covenant 2,000 cubits ahead to show them the way, and to hold back the waters of Jordan so they could cross over dry shod. Just so, Jesus went down into the waters of death, conquered them and held them back so that His Body could cross into the Promised Land 2,000 years later.
The Sin of Eli
After Joshua passed from the scene, Israel began to wander from God. Judges were raised up to judge Israel, and their priests continued to minister at the Tabernacle, but they did not fulfill the whole law of God. For, from the time of Joshua until after the captivity in Babylon, they did not celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles (Nehemiah 8:17). Almost a hundred years before David was born, Eli was Israel's High Priests. He judged Israel 40 years, but he became heavy with flesh and dim of eye. His sons were wicked, and he did not restrain them. He made the mistake of thinking that since they had divine order and the Presence of God in the Tabernacle, they did not need holiness of heart and purity of priesthood. God decided to remove His glory and His presence from this old order which had worked so well in the wilderness.
A man of God with courage and anointing visited Eli and delivered to him the Word of the Lord (1 Samuel 2:27). Eli had kicked at God's sacrifices and honored his sons above God. The judgment was clear. God was going to change the order and the priesthood. He was going to suddenly cut off Eli's sons, and "raise me up a faithful priest that shall do according to that which is in mine heart and in my mind: and I will build him a sure house; and he shall walk before mine Anointed forever." (1 Samuel 2:35). It wasn't long until the fulfillment of this came, when Eli's sons Hophni and Phinehas took the Ark of God out of the Tabernacle in violation of God's Law. They carried it to the battle front to try to help Israel against the Philistines, but ended up with the Philistines capturing the Ark and killing 30,000 men including the two wicked priests. When Eli heard this news, he fell over backward, broke his neck and died on the spot. Phinehas' wife was with child, and when she heard the news she bowed herself and travailed in birth. Before her death, she named her son "Ichabod", meaning "the glory of God is departed". So even at the time of God's judgment on the old order, there was an effort made to perpetuate the old priesthood without the glory of God. But God's glory never returned to that order.
The Ark of God in the House of Dagon
For three days and nights they had the Ark in the house of Dagon, the fish god. But on the morning of the third day they came in and found that the Ark had conquered Dagon and broken off his hands and his head. This is a beautiful picture of Jesus invading the dark realms of hell and destroying both the works and the dominion of Satan. The Philistines soon expelled the Ark out of their land, and sent it back to Israel. The Ark went first to Beth-shemesh, then to Kirjath-jearim where it remained for many days.
David's Great Desire
During the time that Samuel the prophet judged Israel, as well as the 40 year reign of Saul, the Tabernacle was at Shiloh, then at Gibeon. But it had no Holy of Holies, no Ark or Mercy seat. They offered many sacrifices at the brazen altar, but the Glory and Presence of God was missing. They tried to carry on their religious activities, they might have called it "God's divine order", but something was missing. They had no Ark to inquire of in the days of Saul (1 Chronicles 13:3).
When David took over the Kingdom, his heart was filled with a great desire to see the Glory of God back where it belonged. But he got a vision of a higher order than the old order under which Eli had operated. He saw that God deserved something better than just a temporary tabernacle or tent. Now that they were in the land that God had promised them, he wanted to build God a permanent House, or Temple.
We see the frustration of David's efforts to bring the Ark to Jerusalem when he fails to seek God after the due order. He thought that a one man order would work, together with a new cart drawn by oxen. What a picture here of the ONE MAN pastoral rulership system, riding on the back of organized denominational religion, with God's people pictured as oxen or servants of the System. But it would not work. Things came to a standstill, until the true anointed leadership came into view, and a plural ministry of Levites joined together to carry the Ark as the Word of God teaches.
A New Home for the Ark
Finally the Ark came home, but not back to the old Tabernacle order at Gibeon. God had greater plans for it than ever before. But with God the way up is down. So during David's reign the Ark was in obscurity under a tent that David had pitched for it on Mt. Zion. And there it stayed until the Temple was completely built and ready to be dedicated. Oh, beloved, I hope you see what a glorious picture this gives us of the Church of Jesus Christ, and the ministry of the Sons of God! As we read Psalms 102:21, Psalms 22:22, Hebrews 2:11-12, and Romans 8:19, we see that Zion represents that great company of Sons of God who are the "brethren" of the Lord Jesus, and members of that glorious Body of Christ.
Now we begin to see what happens in the last days. The Glory and Presence and Fullness of God will never return to the church system as we have known it in the past. They can carry on their religious activities, their ecumenical councils, their denominational dabblings. They can divide God's people up into 500 more sectarian groups if they wish. But they are never going to bring God's Glory back into the tabernacle. Men are striving mightily in all sincerity to bring us back to New Testament order. I have news for you� God has a New Order on the horizon. And except for the short time that Jesus Christ was here on the earth, this thing has never been seen before.
The Next Move is Temporary
What is the next move? It is to bring the Fullness of His Glory to a company of Sons on Mt. Zion. This is not to be done in glorified bodies. For notice that the Ark was placed under a tent. This speaks of a mortal body. The Apostles Peter and Paul both speak of laying aside this "tabernacle" or body. But in 2 Corinthians 4:11, Paul tells us that the life of Jesus must be manifested in our mortal bodies. He also speaks of the treasure we have in "earthen vessels".
So we find that before permanent divine order comes to the Church, and before His Glory fills His Temple, there must be a company of Sons, predestinated "brethren", who receive His Glory and His fullness and manifest it in mortal bodies "on Mt. Zion" or in the realm of divine authority. For the law went forth from Zion, it was the place of David's throne. And "when God brings again Zion, His watchmen shall see eye to eye". (Isaiah 52:8). Through this ministry of the Sons, all creation is loosed from the bondage of death and corruption, and God's Temple is finally built. Then the mortal is swallowed up in immortality, and the Glory of the Ark of God is moved to it's permanent resting place in the Temple made of living stones. This is the House of God that God shall abide in forever. All the nations are going to be blessed because of this House.
Not only those who are living at this time will enter into this glory, but those who embraced these promises by faith, tho they be dead, shall be resurrected and return with Jesus to become One with those still on the earth. (Ephesians 1:9-11) Now the staves are pulled out of the Ark. No more traveling from glory to glory. No more moving to higher realms and greater truths. With the Fullness of God and the constant manifestation of His Presence and Glory, there is rest.
The Glory of the Temple
Words would fail us to tell of the glory that came to Israel when the Temple was finished, the Ark put in his place, and the Cloud of glory filled the House of God. Israel had never seen anything like it. 2 Chronicles chapter five records this great day, and what a time they had! There was worship such as they had not known. The manifestation of the Presence of God was so great that they could not minister. King Solomon sang and prophesied and prayed a prayer of dedication.
Oh beloved, if we could only catch a glimpse of the glory that is coming to His Church, all the petty differences would fade into insignificance. A new glory, a new realm of worship, a new righteousness, a new fellowship, a new dominion! Quit trying to perfect the old order. God is going to perfect a people and bring them into a new order. An anointed and faithful priesthood, Sons of Zadok (Ezekiel 44:15), shall enter His Temple and go into that realm beyond the Veil to the Holy of Holies. There they shall minister before the Lord in garments that can never be seen in the outer court. Now we can realize what Paul meant when he said that he was caught up and hard things in that third heaven that could not be uttered. These things are hard to speak of, to break down into earthly language. The carnal or natural man cannot understand them at all. Be faithful, weary pilgrim, we are coming to a place of rest. The Sons of God are coming to Mt. Zion, and there His Glory shall they manifest! The stones of the temple are being perfected. The time for them to be brought together is at hand. The sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the Glory that shall be revealed in those that stand. Raise up your heads and shout aloud! No longer art thou to be clothed in a shroud. The voice of joy shall be heard in my own, for out of the prisons their spirits have flown. No longer shall the enemy bind them in fear, for I have spoken release, and my voice they now hear. Arise up my people, to Zion now flee; and there thou shalt find the glory that's of me. With my power I have brought thee to a place of new birth, and I'll anoint thee and send thee to the nations of earth. For thou shalt bring life, and joy and peace, and bring to the prisoners their day of release. In thy heart shall be joy, and on they lips a glad song; for this is the Day for which thou hast waited so long. Others are waiting on yon side of the Veil, to strengthen this Army that never can fail. For tho sometimes thou feel so alone in the battle, the sound thou art hearing is the enemy's death rattle. For he knoweth his time is about to be through, I have raised up a people, and that people is you; overcomers and conquerors thou art in the fray, I am with you forever, and this is my Day! Go forth, go forth, as an army so brave, with compassion and courage a lost world now to save. Fear not, little flock, have I not said this before? Behold I set before thee a new open door. Enter in and rejoice, rejoice in this place; with patience thou ran in life's weary race. So now I am coming at last unto thee, look up and rejoice, my reward is with me. Hallelujah! Well, praise God, I feel like shouting!
The Hidden Manna
Let us go now to that glorious fifth chapter of 2 Chronicles "thus all the work that Solomon made for the House of the Lord was finished." The vessels of silver and gold that had been dedicated under David's ministry were now brought into the Temple. There was a gathering together of the elders of Israel, and all the heads of the tribes to Jerusalem, true Jerusalem (not the Babylon effort of men to gather the heads of denominations together into ecumenical councils and form a "super-church".
Notice in verse three that this gathering takes place in the feast of the seventh month, the Feast of Tabernacles! To you who are unfamiliar with Israel's three feasts, Passover, Pentecost, and Tabernacles, let me say briefly that these feasts were types and shadows of the realities of our Christian experiences. Just as Israel was commanded to meet God three times in the course of a year to fully complete their relationship with God, just so is the Church to meet God in the course of this earth's history on three different realms of relationship.
"These are the feasts of the Lord, even holy convocations which ye shall proclaim IN THEIR SEASONS. In the fourteenth day of the FIRST month at even is the Lord's PASSOVER.." (Leviticus 23:4-5). Here is the beginning. This was to be "the beginning of months" unto them. In Deuteronomy 16:16, we read: "Three times IN A YEAR shall all thy males appear before the Lord thy God in the place which He shall choose: in the FEAST OF UNLEAVENED BREAD (Passover), and in the FEAST OF WEEKS (Pentecost), and in the FEAST OF TABERNACLES: and they shall not appear before the Lord empty."
"Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our PASSOVER is sacrificed for us;" (1 Corinthians 5:7). As we read the laws concerning the Passover feast in Exodus and Leviticus, we can easily see that it is a type of our salvation experience, or justification. No time to go into all that now, as it is thoroughly covered in the book "FEAST OF TABERNACLES". This feast was fulfilled in reality and made available to the Church in it's real meaning when Jesus went to Calvary as the "Lamb of God", and shed His blood to cover our sins. All fundamental Bible scholars will agree to this statement.
"Pentecoste" is a Greek word meaning "fiftieth". For this reason you do not find this word in the Old Testament in relation to this feast. It was a new feast that took place fifty days after the resurrection of Jesus, which was symbolized by the waving of a sheaf on the morrow after the sabbath. (Leviticus 23:11). This "feast of weeks" is introduced in Leviticus 23:16 "Even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall ye number FIFTY DAYS; and ye shall offer a new meat-offering unto the Lord." It goes on to describe this feast, and we can readily see that it is a beautiful type of what happened to the early Church in Acts 2:1-4, when the reality of the Spirit on the "day of Pentecost" replaced the shadow of the old "feast of weeks".
Now the Fundamentalists will readily agree that Passover is ours to enjoy and feast on in this life. In fact, they will quickly tell you that it is imperative and necessary for the Church to operate in this realm of the Spirit. But they deny that the Church today can or should enjoy the Feast of Pentecost as the early Church did. They would tell you that tongues, gifts of the Spirit, healing, the supernatural operation of the Spirit and all that pertained to the fulfillment of the "feast of weeks" or "pentecoste" was only for the early Church and not for us today.
The lives of millions of Spirit-filled people around the world declare, however, that we today can enjoy and feast on the glorious realities of this Pentecostal realm of the Spirit. So the Pentecostal people will tell you that you can enjoy not one, but TWO of the feasts of the Lord. But Pentecostal scholars would try to tell us that the last feast, Tabernacles, is not for us today. It is for the Jews, they say, and we will not see the fulfillment of that shadow in our lives until eternity when we all get to heaven. However, thousands of saints today are realizing that God has something else for the Church, a glorious End-time program, and that this last day move of the Spirit is connected with this last great feast.
Now that the supernatural realm of the Spirit, the Feast of Pentecost, has been restored to the last day Church, there is a great difference of opinion as to what God will do next. Some are building in that realm and continuing as tho it was going to last forever. Others have given up trying to perfect the Church, and disgusted with the imperfect, half-hearted, backsliding ways of the modern Pentecostal movements, they now only look forward to a "rapture" to carry them away to a beautiful far-away land where there are no problems to overcome or battles to win. Then there are those who feel that if they can only set up local assemblies into a fellowship of churches in "New Testament" order, they will turn the world upside down and bring about the perfection of the Church.
Tho we love every man of God who is sincerely trying to work at the problem, and sympathize with those who meet with frustration on every hand in their efforts, yet we can see that it is clear they are ignoring the key to the last day move, and that is the fulfillment of that last great feast, Tabernacles.
The Pattern in the Book
No one would be foolish enough to claim that anything either in scripture or in history indicates that the feast of the seventh month (Tabernacles) has ever been fulfilled in the Church. Yet when we trace these three feasts through the entire Bible, we find that very little is said about the first two feasts, while a great deal is revealed in both Old and New Testaments concerning what happens to the Church at the fulfillment of Tabernacles. As you read the Bible, or search in your concordance (Strong's or Young's), it is amazing what you find in connection with "Trumpets", "Day of Atonement", "Seventh month", "Tabernacles", etc. But we will have to limit our investigation here to what we see in 2 Chronicles chapter 5, where we read in verse 3: "Wherefore ALL the men of Israel assembled themselves unto the King in THE FEAST WHICH WAS IN THE SEVENTH MONTH".
The Glory Comes to the Church
Finally, in verse 5, the Ark of God comes to the Temple. David's great vision of a House for the Glory and Presence of God is fulfilled in the natural. Up to this time the Ark had only dwelled under a tent on Mt. Zion, in the mortal bodies of the Sons of God company. But now the stones (living stones of the True Church) have been brought together into one glorious structure, a fit place for the Ark to dwell permanently. Hallelujah! When this Glory came to the Temple of God, several things happened. First there is mentioned in verse 6 a great Revival, where the sacrifices could not be numbered nor told for multitude. The three thousand on the Day of Pentecost, and the thousands of converts of our present day system of evangelization cannot be compared with what takes place when the Glory and Presence of God enters His completed last day Temple, the body of Christ. Verse 9 says that they drew out the staves from the Ark, indicating that it would be moved no more. It has found it's final and permanent resting place. When God has brought together and dedicated His glorious Church without spot or wrinkle, then He will eternally dwell in them, manifesting Himself through them, and will never again withdraw His Spirit because of backslidings. While the Tabernacle in the wilderness represents a temporary passing order that God blesses as long as His Presence and Glory is allowed to remain in it, the Temple is a picture of that eternal condition of the Church in Glory!
What Happened to the Manna?
A very strange and puzzling statement is made in verse 10� "There was nothing in the Ark save the two tables which Moses put therein at Horeb, when the Lord made a covenant with the children of Israel, when they came out of Egypt". Now in the book of Hebrews, chapter 9, verses 3 and 4 it tells us that while the Ark was in the Tabernacle it had "the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron's rod that budded, and tables of the covenant." In Exodus 16:33 we read where Moses gave commandment for the manna to be put into the Ark of the Covenant: "And Moses said unto Aaron, Take a pot, and put an omer full of manna therein, and lay it up before the Lord, to be kept for your generations. As the Lord commanded Moses, so Aaron laid it up before the Testimony, to be kept." Now, in 2 Chronicles 5, as well as in Solomon's message in 2 Chronicles 6:11, we read that the Manna and the Rod of Aaron were no longer in the Ark. Where were they? What happened to them? The story of the Rod of Aaron is quite lengthy, and we will deal with it at a later date, but I want to limit our investigation here to the missing manna.
Promise to the Overcomer
"Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the Temple of my God, and he shall go no more out." (Revelation 3:12). "To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the Tree of Life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God." (Revelation 2:7). "To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the Hidden Manna." (Revelation 2:17). When I cried to God for an answer as to what happened to the manna in the Ark, the Spirit spoke to my heart, and said: "No longer is the True Manna to be kept from my people, but I have given it to the Overcomer, and when my Temple is brought together in Glory, the Manna is consumed by those living stones that make up my Temple."
So the Hidden Manna is hidden no longer. That which was kept in Christ, in the hidden recesses of the Ark of the Covenant, is not to be shared with members of His glorious Body. Not in the imperfect state of the constantly moving Tabernacle, but only when the Overcomer comes together into One Body, filled with the Glory of God! And this Body now demonstrates and manifests to the world that endless Life that comes from eating of the True Manna from heaven. That which was hidden is now brought to light (2 Timothy 1:10). Life and immortality now belongs to humanity, as it flows like a River of living waters out of the Temple of God where God rules. (Revelation 22:1, Ezekiel 47:1).
Jesus Christ the True Manna
In the sixth chapter of John's gospel we have the great message by Jesus on this true manna. We do not have room here to print the entire chapter, but do not need to, since you have a Bible and can read it for yourself. Stop here if you can, and read that chapter before going on. I will quote a few important verses�
The Jews said to Jesus (verse 31): "Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat." But Jesus answered: "Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you NOT that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you true bread from heaven. FOR THE BREAD OF GOD IS HE WHICH COMETH DOWN FRO HEAVEN, AND GIVETH LIFE UNTO THE WORLD." "The Jews then murmured at him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven." But Jesus answered: "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. I AM THAT BREAD OF LIFE. Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead, this is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and NOT DIE. I am the living bread which came down from heaven; if any man eat of this bread, HE SHALL LIVE FOREVER: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world."
"The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?" But Jesus said: "As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. This IS that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: HE THAT EATETH OF THIS BREAD SHALL LIVE FOREVER." "From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with Him".
So now we see that not everyone will accept Christ on this basis, nor eat of the true manna that has been hidden from ages and from generations. Only to the Overcomer is the promise given. That Temple of God. That endless life which was manifested in Jesus Christ, voluntarily laid down by Him in order to bring us into the same glory, is now consumed by the Overcomer and made a part of a great company of people. And out of that people, the real Melchisedec priesthood, shall flow the fullness of the Life of God to a lost and dying world, to bring them life and immortality. The full salvation of all humanity, and complete deliverance from their every enemy, awaits the manifestation of the Sons of God (Romans 8:19). That true manna, the hidden manna, that came down from heaven is JESUS CHRIST. And as His divine life becomes our life, so that we are no longer in the image of the earthly Adam (1 Corinthians 15:45-50), but are truly bearing the image of the Lord from Heaven, then that life of God shall flow out to the nations of the world thru His Church until there has been brought into being a new heaven and a new earth. Praise God! Hallelujah! 1 Corinthians 15:49 says that "as we HAVE borne the image of the earthy, we SHALL also bear the image of the heavenly." This comes from partaking of His life, eating His flesh and blood, in other words, eating the Hidden Manna. No more death! Not only for them, but also for all humanity. They have put death under their feet, destroyed it finally and forever, as Jesus did eternally when He came and lived by the life of the Father. Not only do they win victory over death, but they now have the power of Life. The first Adam became a living soul, the last Adam (whose image we shall bear) was a life-giving spirit. So that now out of the Temple of God flows a river of Life to bless the nations. All those who failed to attain to the status of an Overcomer will be greatly blessed by those who did.
In the Image of the Son
Jesus was so much in the image of the invisible God, that when you saw Him you saw the Father (John 14:9, Colossians 1:15). He was the brightness of His glory, the express image of His person (Hebrews 1:3). He lived by the life of the Father, and came only to do His will (John 6:38). He was filled with the glory of the Father (John 1:14), and He said "Now is the Son of man glorified, and God is glorified in Him" (John 13:31). Perhaps you don't like to see Jesus of Nazareth exalted and glorified so much in a message, but that's all this messenger can do when he gets a glimpse of the glory of God that was manifested in that man, Jesus Christ!
After his resurrection, Jesus spoke to his disciples in John 20:21 and said: "Peace be unto you: AS MY FATHER HATH SENT ME, EVEN SO SEND I YOU." In His prayer in John 17:18 he prays: "As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world." And in verse 22: "And the Glory which thou gavest me I have given them:" Think of it! The same Life, the same glory, the same authority, the same throne (Revelation 3:21) that He received of His Father; He now gives to His Body, the Overcomer! What love! What grace! What a divine sharing! Bless His dear Name!
Now I am going to make a big statement� what Jesus of Nazareth was to the Father, we are to him. He was the visible manifestation of the invisible God, the fullness of the Godhead bodily (Colossians 2:9). We are His ambassadors (2 Corinthians 5:20) and representatives on earth, and His Body (1 Corinthians 12:27), the fullness of Him that filleth all in all (Ephesians 1:23). He was the Christ, the Son of the living God (Matthew 16:16). We are the Lord's Christ (Revelation 11:15), and as Overcomers we are His Son (Revelation 21:7). He came to do the will of His Father, and to manifest the life of God. We are come to do His will, and manifest the life of Christ (Galatians 2:20). In His deity, He is equal with God. In His HUMANITY, we are brought to equality with him, called "his brethren", (Romans 8:29, Hebrews 2:11), and made joint-heirs of all that he receives by inheritance (Romans 8:17). What a Saviour! What a plan of redemption! How far-reaching� from the depths of sin, to the heights of His Glory! No one else could do it but Him! Someone says: "But Brother Bill, such a thing as this is impossible". Yes, I agree. And I'm so glad that it is impossible. For if it were possible, some man would do it. But now has God provided a plan of salvation that is absolutely impossible. And only He himself is able to do such a thing. So that WHEN it is done, it will have to be Him that did it, and the glory will go to Him where it belongs! There is so much more to be revealed on this line, but we must close this message. Let us go back to the picture of the Ark in the Temple.
The Cloud of Glory
As we turn our attention once again back to the fifth chapter of 2 Chronicles, we see what happens on the day when the Temple is dedicated and true worship begins. Verse 11 says that "all the priests that were present were sanctified". Thank God for a holy priesthood, no longer contaminated with the rituals of Babylon, nor the taint of preaching for gain, nor the lusts of the flesh. Sanctified. Praise God! He will have ministries who have laid their own lives down for His sake, and for the House of God. As we look at history, we find this hard to believe, but it is so anyhow.
Verse 12 says there were 120 priests sounding with trumpets. Just as on the day of Pentecost when 120 of the Spiritual Priesthood sounded their trumpets in many languages of the "wonderful works of God". (Acts 2:11, 1:15). This message on the 120 trumpets is too long to deal with here, but will be dealt with in another message. But I just wanted to call to your attention that it is here, at the time when the Glory of God comes to His Temple, that these 120 trumpets sound forth.
Finally, in verses 13 and 14 we see the Lord descending in a cloud of Glory to fill the House of the Lord with His Glory. His Presence was so great that men could not stand to minister. Oh, that we come to that place where we fall prostrate before His mighty living Presence! What a day! What a hope! What a Saviour!
So in the end of this age, in the feast of the seventh month, we find God bringing His Body together in such a way and with such an anointing that the fullness of Him is manifested in them! No longer is the inheritance hidden, reserved in heaven, kept only in Christ Jesus. No longer is that Kingdom revealed only in Heaven, but now is it come to earth in fulfillment of the prayer of Jesus (Matthew 6:10): as the apostle Peter said: "God hath begotten us again unto a living hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an INHERITANCE incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation READY TO BE REVEALED IN THE LEAST TIME."
The Time is at Hand
Be ready! He will soon appear! He will come to His Temple. All signs point to the fact that we are ready now to begin the feast of the seventh month. The Feast of Tabernacles finally to be fulfilled in this last day Church! Praise the Lord Jesus! Glory to His Name! You will eat of Hidden Manna. You will never die! The Church will come into a perfect and divine order, a permanent order! The glory of God will come to His Church and abide forever! The Sons of God are about to make their move. A clean and perfect Priesthood is being made ready. Kings and Priests are getting ready for this great day! It is the Day when His glory will be revealed. It is the Day of the Lord!
Chapter 6 - THE GOLDEN ALTAR OF INCENSE
In this message I will make a statement so startling, and present a truth so controversial and so different from traditional theology that I will have to use nine different translations to back it up. This message contains strong meat, and is not for "babes" who are limited to the milk of the Word.
The end-time Sons of God are coming into such a strange and glorious realm of worship and praise that we must go to the Word of God to find confirmation. As some are coming through the Spirit-filled or "pentecostal" experience into a further work of God that we have never known before, we find others who have been in pentecost, going back to the outer court religion of works, formality, and ritualism. The realm of the supernatural as we have known it in the past, with its healing, gifts, and miracles, will soon cease to exist. It will pass away. Those in this realm will either go on to the fullness of God, to a place of dominion and a performance of His "greater works", or they will find themselves without their supernatural "gifts" and forced to worship in the realm of the fundamentalist in the outer court. Let us look into the Word�
Wood and Gold
We find the description of the Golden Altar in chapter 30 of Exodus. If you have a Bible with you, please stop here and read the first 10 verses of that chapter. Notice in verse one that the altar is made of wood, overlaid with pure gold. In the Bible, wood is symbolic of the human nature, while gold is a type of the purity of God. So here in the Golden Altar we find a meeting of God and man, with God so overshadowing man, that the nature of man is nowhere to be seen. The purpose of this altar is to burn incense upon. The burning of incense is a type of worship and prayer. We find this confirmed in Psalms 141:2 "Let my prayer be set forth before thee as incense; and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice." We find in Luke chapter one that Zacharias, father of John the Baptist, was a priest whose lot was to burn incense in the temple. Luke 1:10 says "And the whole multitude of the people were praying without at the time of incense."
And then in Revelation 8:3-4 we read: "And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel's hand."
Worship, Praise, and Intercession
We find in Acts 2:15 that the Holy Spirit was poured out upon the disciples at the "third hour of the day". or nine o'clock in the morning. They worshipped and praised God and spoke "the wonderful works of God." We see in Acts 3:1 that Peter and John went up to the temple at the hour of prayer, being "the ninth hour" or three o'clock in the afternoon. At this time they interceded for the lame man, and spoke the word of faith that met his need.
Twice in the day the incense was burned on the Golden Altar. "Sweet incense every morning� and "perpetual incense" every evening (Exodus 30:7-8). The morning incense was a picture of the true worship and praise of the saints to their wonderful God, while the evening incense is typical of the prayer and intercession for those in need. This is God's holy priesthood� a ministry unto the Lord, and a meeting of the needs of the people.
We see in Revelation 8:3 that the Golden Altar was before the throne. In Hebrews 4:14-16 we find that Jesus is our High Priest, passed into the heavens, yet ready to meet our needs. So we are told "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." We see in Philippians 4:6 that we are to bring our requests to the Lord "by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving". In Hebrews 13:15 we read: "Let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name."
In Spirit and in Truth
We find in John 4:23-24 where Jesus says that the Father seeks worshippers who will worship Him in Spirit and in Truth. In MOFFATT'S translation we read: "The real worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and in reality; for these are the worshippers that the Father desires. God is Spirit, and his worshippers must worship Him in Spirit and in reality." It is put this way in PHILLIP'S translation: "True worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and in reality. Indeed, the Father looks for men who will worship him like that. God is Spirit, and those who worship him can only worship in spirit and in reality." Permit me to use just one more translation to bring out more of the beauty of this marvelous passage. In WUEST'S New Testament we read: "The genuine worshippers shall worship the Father in a spiritual sphere, and in the sphere of truth. For indeed, the Father is seeking such as these to worship Him. God as to His nature is spirit, as for those who are worshipping, it is necessary in the nature of the case to be worshipping in a spiritual sphere, and in the sphere of truth."
God hates fleshly worship. He hates the works of the carnal mind being brought to the Golden Altar of worship. In Leviticus 10:1-2 we find two of the sons of Aaron coming before the Lord with "strange fire" in his censer, and incense therein, which the Lord had not commanded. A fire went out from the Lord and killed them. These men were fully qualified to burn incense, but they did not worship "in the Spirit". They did what their natural mind though was alright. Dear ones, it is a glorious privilege to come before the Living God, in worship and praise and adoration. But it is a dreadful, and dangerous thing to create a system of religion out of the carnal mind. God will not accept anything but that which is brought forth by the life of the Spirit. Exodus 30:9 says: "Ye shall offer no strange incense thereon".
Trees of the Lord
Let me point out to you that the wood in this altar was "shittim" wood, from the old desert Acacia tree. This was not made of the imported cedars of Lebanon, or the great fir trees. Just the plain, solid, available desert Acacia tree. You don't have to be a PhD, or a seminary graduate, or even have two suits of clothes to worship God in Spirit and in truth. He is searching for those who are available, whatever their state in life may be. God is not interested in making all the poor people rich. He is interested in taking people in all walks of life, poor and rich, and bringing them up into a Royal Priesthood�Kings and Priests. When you catch a glimpse of this realm of the Spirit, you will not care about the riches of this world. You will not even care if you are getting equal rights with people of this world, for you are not of this world.
The Acacia tree was a tree with heavy bark and sharp thorns for protection against it's natural enemies. It had roots that sunk deep beneath the desert sands, searching for water, for underground rivers. But in order to be used in this Golden Altar, it had to be cut loose from it's roots, it's natural source of strength. It was cut loose from all things earthy, and separated alone unto God and His plan.
So many feel that they must have some protection against those who would misuse them. So their thorns and bark consist of a bad temper, or a sharp tongue, a keen wit or a vindictive spirit, or even maybe a spirit of self-pity and a hysterical weeping against any offense to their person. Or it may be sulking, a drawing inside your own personal shell, or even a physical ailment that commands the pity and concern of others. But whatever your natural protection happens to be, it must go. It must be stripped off, leaving you defenseless against a cruel world, before you can be used as a vessel of honor in the true worship of the Lord. But fret not, He will cover your wood or human nature with pure gold. His divine nature will be your protection. You will need never fear any enemies, for nothing can touch you. His nature in you and covering you will bring forth nothing but love from you for your enemies and those that attack you. All things that come your way will work for your good, and make you more like Him.
There have been so many attacks made against my life and teachings that I no longer bother to answer them, although proof of their falseness was easy to produce. But I had to learn by hard experience that the natural protection does not fit in this new realm of the Spirit. It was especially hard to bear when attacks were made by those who were close to us, and when their lies were so easy to disprove. But I gradually came to the knowledge that my best protection was to be covered by the divine nature of God, and let His compassion and love and wisdom rule over my spirit. Just learn to be what you are, in Him, and quit trying to prove to people that you are not what they heard you are. When someone tells you that I preach such and such a false doctrine, don't expect me to take valuable space in this paper, or time out of my busy schedule to fight back at them or disprove their lies. Just read my messages and see for yourself what I believe and preach. Come and visit us and see what our lives are like; see if we live and walk in our daily lives in the Spirit or in the flesh realm. Strip me, oh God�of the bark so that I cannot protect myself. Cut off the thorns, oh Lord, that I will not strike back to hurt any of my enemies. Let only the gold of your divine nature be seen in all of my life and my worship of you!
Go On or Get Out!
Now let me get down to the meat of this message. We have seen that the Incense represents worship, praise, and intercession. And the Golden Altar is symbolic of that vessel that offers up the spiritual incense. God could certainly meet the needs of the people without your help or mine. But by His marvelous grace He has allowed us to be vessels by which intercession can go forth for a needy world. He got along fine for a long time without the praise and worship of humanity, but thank God He has revealed His glory to us that we might be able to express our love and adoration to the Almighty God.
Throughout the year, until the time for the Feast of Tabernacles, the Golden Altar resided in the sanctuary with the candlestick (lampstand) and table of shewbread. This was a place that was 20 cubits long, 10 cubits wide, and 10 cubits high. Now 20 times 10 times 10 equals 2,000. And for a period of 2,000 years the Church has been in this supernatural realm which we call the "Pentecostal" realm. They have worshipped God by supernatural means, and walked in the operation of the supernatural "gifts" of the Spirit, in contrast to the natural worship and human works in the outer court religion.
But something is about to happen in our day to this "pentecostal realm". The supernatural as we have known it, or "that which is in part" is passing away. God is moving, and no longer will men be able to operate in this realm as they have in the past. The time has come. Thus saith the Lord! They will either go on to the fullness of God, to do the works of Jesus, and "greater works", or they will drop back to the outer court religion. There will be those who, without going through the veil, will try to continue to imitate the works of the Spirit, the miracles, the gifts. They will, like Nadab and Abihu in Leviticus 10:1, put fire in their own censer and try to burn incense. But it will be "strange fire", and the fire of God will consume them. I recently, for the first time, attended services of one of America's "biggest" and best known evangelists. I went sincerely, with an open heart. Since his radio broadcasts indicated a great deal of liberty in the services, I was expecting a service led by the Holy Ghost, with freedom in the Spirit. But there was no true liberty. There was lots of noise, and plenty of "jazzy" music. But there was no freedom for operation of Gifts of the Spirit, no ministry or liberty for anyone except the six very talented performers on the stage or platform. It was a "religious vaudeville", a "pentecostal circus", a two hour entertainment carried on for one purpose� to get the money from the people. It was "strange fire". One of the young men from our church was an usher, and he was backstage where he saw them take a man who was not cripple at all, in fact he was walking around and dancing during the music, but they put him into a wheelchair, rolled him on to the stage where they commanded him to rise from the wheelchair (which he did on cue) thus performing a "great miracle".
Someone says, "but don't you believe in miracles, Brother Britton?" Of course I do! But those who go beyond the veil into the Holiest of all will operate as Jesus did. The miracles will be genuine, and not for the purpose of raising an offering. But from here on, you will see more and more frauds and fakers rising up in the healing and "gift" realm. For those who do not go on into the fullness of God will find themselves without genuine miracles in the "part" realm, and will be forced to produce their own signs or prophecies by fakery, or get out of the business. I could shock you by naming names of many well known evangelists and radio preachers who are already offering "strange fire", but it is not my ministry or my purpose to blast or fight or expose individuals, but to show you the principles of truth by which God is working in these last days. Dear God, how blind God's people are, sending millions of dollars each year to religious racketeers who mail them "personal prophecies" that have been run off a printing press and mailed out by the thousands, and who send them "personal" letters that have been run through automatic typewriters by office girls while the big evangelist has never even seen their letter. What a shock when they finally awake to the reality of what has been going on. Look what happened to Korah, Dathan and Abiram in Numbers chapter 16. They put fire in their censers, and gathered "all the congregation" against Moses and Aaron. What a shock to the congregation when the "earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up". To see their heroes thus dealt with by God, after they had supported them, must have caused them much grief. Wake up, child of God! Ask God to help you see the difference between the true fire of God, and the "strange fire" of the frauds.
The Work of the Censers
There were censers of brass (Numbers 16:39), and censers of pure gold (1 Kings 7:50). The brass was to be used in the outer court, and the gold in the sanctuary. The true fire of God that was to be put into the censer and carried to the Golden Altar of Incense, was to come from the fire put under the burnt offering on the Brazen Altar. This shows us that no worship or intercession is acceptable unto God unless it comes as a result of a work of Calvary in the life of the Believer. "Strange fire" comes from the works of the flesh and the operation of the carnal mind. The true fire of God results from a crucified life, through a true knowledge of the work of Calvary.
The censer was a small vessel used to carry fire from the Brazen Altar to the Golden Altar of incense. There were times when incense was put right into the censer while the priest carried it, as in Numbers 16:46, where Aaron took fire from the altar, put it in the censer, put in incense and ran among the people to stay the plague. A marvelous picture of intercession for a people under judgment.
Since there was no place provided on the Golden Altar for fire to be placed or ashes to be carried out, no fire pans, shovels, etc, it is obvious that the priest took the censer of live coals and sat it on top of the Golden Altar. He then dropped the incense into the censer sitting on the altar, and a cloud of incense would rise up out of the fire. This is the picture we see in Revelation 8:3-4, where the angel has a censer and incense to offer upon the Golden Altar, where the smoke of the incense ascended up "out of the angel's hand", or from the censer. This was what the Golden Altar was for, a place to set the censer in the Tabernacle, for it was not to be set upon the floor. There was a crown around the edge of the Golden Altar, to keep the censer from sliding off. This is why they took the Golden Altar behind the veil into the Holiest of Holies on the Day of Atonement.
Where was the Golden Altar?
Perhaps that last statement surprised you. Just where did they put the altar? And was it ever moved? Why? What is this symbolic of? Let us look into the scriptures. Turn to Exodus chapter 30, verses 1 through 10. "And thou shalt make an altar to burn incense upon: of shittim wood shalt thou make it." (verse 1). Where to put this altar is given in verse 6: "And thou shalt put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the mercy seat that is over the testimony, where I will meet with thee. And Aaron shall burn thereon sweet incense every morning". Let us read that same scripture in the Amplified translation: "You shall put the altar of incense in front and outside of the veil that screens the ark of the testimony, before the mercy seat that is over the testimony (the law, the tables of stone), where I will meet with you. And Aaron shall burn on it incense of sweet spices; every morning when he trims and fills the lamps he shall burn it." We find King Uzziah (2 Chronicles 26:19) standing beside the incense altar with a censer in his hand, ready to burn incense. Azariah the chief priest, and 80 other priests were there with him, so we know that this was not in the Holiest place. It was in the sanctuary. So these scriptures make it plain that the regular resting place of the Golden Altar was in the holy place with the lampstand and table of shewbread where the priests ministered daily.
But now we see what seems to be a conflicting scripture in Hebrews chapter 9. For in verses 1 thru 4 we read: "Then verily the first covenant had also ordinances of divine service, and a worldly (earthly) sanctuary. For there was a tabernacle made; the first, wherein was the candlestick, and the table, and the shewbread; which is called the sanctuary. And after the second veil, the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all; which had the golden censer, and the Ark of the Covenant overlaid round about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron's rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant." Now notice, please, that the Golden Altar of incense is not mentioned as being in either place. And what is this "golden censer" which is said to be in the Holy of Holies? The word translated "censer" here is not the same Greek word used for censer in Revelation 8:3-5. The word censer is only found three times in the New Testament. Two times in Revelation 8 it is the Greek word "Libanotos", which means a small vessel for burning incense. But in Hebrews 9:4 it is the Greek word "Thumiasterion" which is a place of fumigation, ie.: altar of incense in the temple.
So we see that Hebrews chapter nine tells us that the Golden Altar of incense was actually located behind the veil, in the Holy of Holies. Now to confirm this, let me read from other translations, Hebrews 9:3-4:
PHILLIPS: "Inside, beyond the curtain, was the inner tent called the Holy of Holies, in which were the GOLDEN INCENSE ALTAR and the gold covered ark of the agreement."
REVISED STANDARD VERSION: "Behind the second curtain stood a tent called the Holy of Holies, having the GOLDEN ALTAR OF INCENSE, and the Ark of the Covenant."
NEW ENGLISH BIBLE: "Beyond the second curtain was the tent called the Most Holy Place. Here was a GOLDEN ALTAR OF INCENSE, and the ark of the covenant."
BECK: AN AMERICAN TRANSLATION: "Behind the second curtain was the part of the tabernacle called the most holy place with the GOLDEN ALTAR OF INCENSE and the ark of the covenant."
MOFFATT: "But behind the second veil was the tent called the Holy of Holies, containing the GOLDEN ALTAR OF INCENSE, and also the Ark of the Covenant."
WILLIAMS: "But behind the second curtain is the tent that is called the Holy of Holies, with its GOLDEN INCENSE ALTAR and the chest for the covenant."
WEYMOUTH: "And behind the second veil was a sacred tent called the Holy of Holies. This had a GOLDEN ALTAR OF INCENSE, and the ark of the covenant."
ROTHERHAM: "But after the second veil a tent, that which is called the Most Holy: having a GOLDEN ALTAR OF INCENSE and the Ark of the Covenant."
AMPLIFIED NEW TESTAMENT: "But inside, beyond the second curtain or veil there stood another tabernacle (division) known as the Holy of Holies. It had the GOLDEN ALTAR OF INCENSE and the ark (chest) of the covenant."
So here we have nine different translations plus Strong's Concordance and Berry's Interlinear Greek-English New Testament that confirm the fact that the Greek word "Thumiasterion" translated in the King James as "golden censer", is actually the Golden Altar of Incense. And it is located inside the Holy of Holies, behind the veil.
Why In the Holy of Holies?
Is there a contradiction? We read that the Golden Altar was to be placed outside the veil, in the sanctuary, and that the priests were to minister before it daily. Now in Hebrews we read that it is inside the veil, in the Holy of Holies, where no one but the High Priest is allowed to enter, and that only once a year. Notice also that in Revelation 8:3 the Golden Altar was "before the throne", which is behind the veil. (Read Heb 9:7)
The answer is given by several authorities. ALFORD'S GREEK NEW TESTAMENT, WUEST'S STUDIES IN HEBREWS, the AMPLIFIED NEW TESTAMENT, as well as the Jewish MISCHNA all explain that the Golden Altar was not kept permanently in the Holy of Holies, but taken in on the Day of Atonement, the 10th day of the seventh month, when the High Priest went in to make atonement. The reason was that the High Priest might have a ;lace to set the censer of burning coals of fire from the brazen altar, so he would not have to set it on the ground inside the Holy of Holies. Most certainly he would not set it on the Mercy-seat. He could not hold the censer of fire in his hands while he ministered the blood upon the Mercy-seat.
We get the picture in Leviticus chapter 16. When the Day of Atonement comes, the day when someone passes through the Veil and all sin is removed from Israel, we see the High Priest washed and properly dressed. All the other priests that usually minister in the sanctuary before the candlestick and the shewbread are moved back out to the outer court. First he takes the Golden Altar behind the veil. Then he brings the censer of burning coals from the brazen altar and puts it on the Golden Altar. He then comes in with both hands full of incense (Leviticus 16:12 Amplified), which he puts on the fire, creating a cloud of incense. He then brings in the blood of the bullock and sprinkles it on the Mercy-seat. Then he kills the goat of the sin-offering and brings his blood in to put on the Mercy-seat also. (Leviticus 16:12-15). In addition to putting the blood on the Mercy-seat, he also put some of it on the horns of the Golden Altar of incense (Exodus 30:10). Meanwhile, while all this is going on, NO PRIEST IS ALLOWED IN THE SANCTUARY (Leviticus 16:17), but all must retreat to the outer court.
What Does This Mean to Us?
I am going to make a prediction now, based on the scriptures we have read, that will shake some theological traditions to the foundation. We know we are in the last days. It is time for the fulfillment of the Feast of Tabernacles. The trumpets are already blowing, that is, the message is already going forth to prepare for this great feast. The appearing of the Lord is at hand. Where will He appear? In the cloud. What cloud? Some rain cloud up in the sky? Of course not! You should know better than that. Leviticus 16:2 says that He will appear in the cloud of incense in the Holy of Holies. Only those who pass through the veil will see Him at this time. Unto them that look for Him shall He appear, to bring them to full salvation or deliverance from every earthly hindrance or limitation (Hebrews 9:28 Amplified).
That cloud of incense represents our worship and praise, brought into a higher realm than ever before known. Even in the Early Church, those who brought to pass the Feast of Pentecost, their worship was still in the lower earthly realm of the sanctuary. As supernatural as that place was, and as real as their relationship to the Lord proved to be, they were still in the sanctuary during the Feast of Pentecost, and not behind the veil.
At no time in the year did they put so much incense on the Golden Altar as they did on the Day of Atonement. "His two hands full of sweet incense beaten small." This shows us that our worship and praise and intercession is not only going to be brought into a higher realm than we have ever known it before, but also that there is going to be more of it than ever before. Praise God! He is wonderful!
As we have said before, the sanctuary where we find the candlestick and the table of shewbread represents this Holy Ghost realm of Pentecost. Jesus said that healing was the children's bread. (Mark 7:27). And here on this table (the lowest and most accessible piece of furniture in the tabernacle) were the twelve loaves of bread, available to the children of God (Mark 2:25-26). Our "daily bread". For when we get healed of one thing, we find ourselves coming back to the table for something else until death finally takes us. But thank God, that High-priestly company are going past the veil into a realm where there is "hidden manna". This "hidden manna" is eaten only by the Overcomer (Revelation 2:17). Whosoever eats of this manna shall never die. Death will be put under feet. So when the High-priest company go through the veil they do not have to take the shewbread of healing. They have divine Life in that realm of the fullness of God. No death, no sickness can touch them. Praise God! No "gifts" of the Spirit needed here.
Neither do they take the lampstand, or candlestick. For they have the light of His Presence, the Shekinah glory of God in the Holy of Holies. These two pieces of furniture are left in the sanctuary alone. For that realm is empty. There is no one to trim the lamps or eat of the shewbread. All those who do not go through the veil have to go to the outer court. Today many have been enjoying the grace of God, and operating in the supernatural realm of the Spirit in one degree or another. But we see a transition taking place. Either they are going on to higher heights in the Spirit, moving behind the veil toward the Holy of Holies, or they are losing what they did have. Pentecostal churches are going back to the formality and respectability of the traditional denominations. You see it everywhere. I know there are exceptions, and thank God for them. But you will have to choose. Either IN or OUT. This "part" realm is passing away. Either move on to the fullness of the Spirit, behind the veil, or you will find yourself without the gifts and the supernatural working of the Spirit as in days gone by. Now this doesn't mean that they are lost, or that they do not receive the blessing provided by this Atonement. Leviticus 16:18 (Amplified) says: "And he shall go out to the altar of burnt offering in the court which is before the Lord, and make atonement for it, and shall take some of the blood of the bull and of the goat and put it on the horns of the altar round about. What it does mean is that those who have retreated to the outer court will not be among that "Zadok" company mentioned in Ezekiel chapter 44 who minister in the Holy of Holies unto the Lord.
Call it "Sonship", call it "Melchisedec priesthood", call it passing though the veil, coming into the fullness of God, the Manchild company, the High Calling, or whatever term you want to use. It still means that there is a people who are going all the way with God, to be conformed to the image of His Son (Romans 8:29). You see them throughout the Book. The Bible is full of this truth.
The High Praises of God
Tho there is no need for the candlestick or the shewbread in the Most Holy Place, yet there is need for the Golden Altar. For coming into full Sonship will not stop us from worshipping God. Some poor men have been so deluded by evil spirits as to think that they are going to receive worship. So they call themselves God, and have quit praying to God in heaven, and have no spirit of worship toward Jesus. But such is not the case for true sons. When we pass into that high and glorious realm of the Spirit, we take our Altar of worship with us. But it also passes into a higher realm. So we see a higher form of worship than the world has ever known. As we approach that day, we find our worship reaching ever higher dimensions in the Spirit. We are getting rid of the "strange fire", the fleshly, carnal worship of tradition and ritualism. As well as the flesh-tingling liberties of fanaticism. There is plenty of liberty, oh yes, but it is a freedom harnessed by the Spirit of God and channeled into ever ascending praises to our Lord and King. It is a joy and a liberty that produces the fruit of the Spirit in abundance in our lives.
Notice in Revelation chapter 8 that at the time of the judgment trumpets, the Golden Altar is in the heavenlies before the throne of God. The Throne speaks to us of authority and dominion. Thus we see that there will be a realm of praise and worship and intercession that will have the very authority of God Himself behind it. And notice that at this time there was "much incense" offered. What a glorious ministry for those who go beyond the veil and are caught up into His Presence in the heavenlies. What a complete defeat for Satan as he faces this glorious Army of the Lord. Friends, don't miss out on this! Press your way in, as Paul said in Philippians 3:14 "I press on to the goal for the prize of God's high call in Christ Jesus." (Moffatt) Let us worship our Saviour, and offer to Him much incense with the fruit of our lips!
Chapter 5 - THE GREATER GLORY
Paul preached a gospel of glory, a glorious message. The words "glory", "glorious", etc, appear in Paul's epistles one hundred and twenty eight times, far more than all the rest of the New Testament combined. He saw a glory coming to the Church, the body of Christ, far greater than anything the world had ever seen.
Where did Paul get this revelation of the glory of God in the Church? According to his own words, he saw these glorious truths in the Old Testament law and prophetic books. In Acts 24:14 he tells Felix the governor: "But this I confess unto thee, that after the way which they call heresy, so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets." And testifying to King Agrippa in Acts 26:22, he is even more emphatic and specific as to where his teachings come from: "Having therefore obtained help of God, I continue unto this day, witnessing both to small and great, saying none other things than those which the prophets and Moses did say should come."
Now listen to me, all that Paul preached on the Church, the Body of Christ, the gifts of the Spirit, the Sons of God and full deliverance for all creation� is all found hidden in the law and the prophets. And if it was there for Paul to see, it is still there for us to see if we will let the Holy Spirit illuminate our vision. So open your heart for divine revelation as we look into the Old Testament types and shadows for a picture of the glory of the end-time Church.
The Glory of the Tabernacle
The glory of the New Testament reality is pictured in the Old Testament types and shadows. Paul states in 2 Corinthians chapter three that there was a glory in that first covenant, but that glory had to be done away with because of the glory of Christ which so far excels. So in our studies of the Old Testament law, we are concerned only with finding the pictures there of the greater glory of the reality in Christ for our day.
I want you to follow Israel through the wilderness into the promised land. From the time they crossed the Red Sea, they made 41 encampments in the wilderness before they finally crossed Jordan and made that 42nd encampment on the other side of Jordan in the land of promise. Praise God!
When Israel fled from Egypt under the leadership of Moses, they had much gold in their possession. Each one had gotten gold from their Egyptian neighbors, and each individual Israelite was endowed with a little gold, a type of the divine nature of God. But as long as it remained with the individuals, it was doing very little good for the Kingdom. In fact, in Exodus 32 a wrong spirit got into some of the people and caused them to take their individual gold earrings and make an idol, a golden calf. It would have been better for them if they had not had the gold in the first place, than to use it to make an idol. This is the case with many people who have fled from sin, and who possess a little portion of the nature of God. In their individualism, they become rebellious, entertain wrong spirits, and end up in chaos instead of glory.
The gold dedicated to the golden calf was destroyed, and was not used in the Tabernacle. It was when the people of God, under divinely appointed leadership, came into a unity of faith and purpose that they gave up their individual pieces of gold for the building of God's house or Tabernacle. It was this House of God, the Tabernacle in the wilderness, and not the loose pieces of gold and earrings, that pictured the glory of God in His Church. What a picture of the One Body of Christ, made up of many members who have been willing to lay down their own spiritual riches and give their strength to God's House, His Body.
At last the Tabernacle is finished! Every piece of furniture is in it's place, and the cloud of glory hovers over it. The God of glory Himself appears in the door of the Tabernacle, and all Israel trembles at the sight. Yes, there is a divine glory in this wilderness journey, continually present with them day and night. But there are degrees of glory in the Tabernacle, just as there are in the Church today, and this is what I want to talk about today.
The Glory of the Outer Court
As the rising sun appeared in the eastern horizon, it cast long shadows across the camp of Israel. As soon as it had risen high enough to reach over the linen fence surrounding the tent and courtyard, there was a brilliant reflection from the shining brass of the laver and the brazen altar. As the sun rose high in the sky, the glory of that outer court increased. The priests of the outer court were busy with much activity. This activity in the outer court began with the dawning of the day, and ended with the sunset. For when the dark shades of night fell around them, they could no longer see to work in that area.
So it is in the outer courts of religious activity. There is a glory in the outward works of salvation, never doubt it. Pioneers in the realm of salvation by faith, and the washing of the filth of the world by the water of the Word, have become martyrs for what they saw in the glory of the outer court. Praise God! God blesses those whose calling and ministry is in this realm of the Spirit. There is much activity here, and it is necessary. There is sweat, and tears, and labor, and faith manifested. Thank God for even those who see nothing more than the outer court. They get souls saved, they preach Calvary, and they teach holiness of life. They introduce the believer to the outward forms of religion.
It is here that we find the Fundamentalist today with their evangelism, their baptisms, their teachings on personal holiness, and the laws of the New Testament. We praise God for such, for they are doing a good work� as long as they do not attempt to prevent God's people from pressing on past the next veil into the place of greater glory. For though there is a glory in this outer court, it is a fading glory. For the night comes when no man can work in that realm. And there is a greater glory in the sanctuary that is not affected by the setting of the sun. And the blood or life of that which is accomplished in the outer court is taken on into the sanctuary and sprinkled upon the golden furniture there.
Inside the Sanctuary
As you pass through the door of the tent, the outer veil, and come into the inner court, you come into a glory that is not even seen by those in the outer court. The light from the seven branch lampstand shines upon the golden furniture, reflecting the glory of God's divine nature in a measure. The lampstand (or candlestick), the table of shewbread, and the golden altar of incense all shown forth with a divine glory to those of the priesthood who ministered in this realm daily.
Now, beloved, let me remind you that there is no natural light in this place. There are four coverings of linen, ram skins, goat skins, and badger skins. And there were no windows. For this is the realm of the Spirit-filled Church, the oil filled lampstand. And the Bible clearly states that the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit. The ministry in this place is Spirit given, Spirit revealed, and Spirit operated.
No matter how much education a man has, or how many degrees he possesses, he cannot operate the Word of Knowledge by means of his education. It is a spiritual gift and a spiritual operation. No medical doctor or surgeon, no matter how long he has practiced or how skilled he is in his profession, can operate the gift of Healing by his medical knowledge. It is a supernatural gift, and the natural man cannot comprehend it. The best detective in the FBI cannot discern evil spirits by means of his natural abilities of detection, for his ability is natural and will not operate in this realm of the Spirit.
Without the light of the candlestick, this place is in total darkness. And there is no darkness as great as a Pentecostal person, church, or movement that has lost the oil and light of the Holy Spirit. For they cannot depend on natural understanding and light to guide them in this supernatural realm. If they do not keep filled with the Spirit (oil), they will come into a darkness and confusion greater than any found in Fundamentalist circles. In our day we have seen the sad spectacle of a backslidden pentecostal movement trying to follow in the footsteps of non-pentecostal denominations, but it will not work. Their darkness is too great, if they let the light of the Holy Spirit go out in their Churches. Only by divine revelation was the pentecostal movement raised up and this realm entered into, and only by divine revelation can it continue to live in His sight.
When the Oil Runs Low
In spite of the glory of this realm of the Spirit, it is still an imperfect place. The Church has not yet come to it's full glory, to it's perfection. This is common knowledge that cannot be refuted. But thank God, we are almost to the end of this imperfect state. Notice that the dimensions of the holy place was 20 cubits long, 10 cubits wide, and 10 cubits high. 20 x 10 x 10 or a total of 2,000 cubits. So for 2,000 years we have been working in the candlestick realm of His Church, eating the children's bread (healing), and offering up prayers at the golden altar. It is now time to move to a greater glory.
Look at the tools and implements God ordered for this candlestick. For one thing, there are the tongs to trim the wicks. Because an imperfect and fallible priesthood will sometimes allow the oil to run low and the wicks to burn dry. Now as long as the wicks, symbolic of our humanity, are saturated with oil we have light. But if dead flesh tries to minister in this place without the anointing of the Holy Ghost, you have troubles. The wick begins to sizzle and smoke, and the smoke causes tears to fill the eyes of all in the sanctuary. So it is with ministries that try to continue in this supernatural realm after the power and anointing of the Holy Spirit is gone. The Burning flesh begins to stink, the tears begin to roll in the House of God, and the light goes out. Men who were once anointed of God become "money merchants", or "kingdom builders", or "truth fighters". Men's fleshly organizations usurp authority over God's dear people. Saints of God who once were filled with love and compassion for one another, begin to bicker and quarrel and strive over non-essential details.
Then God brings out the ministry of the tongs. Through His ministries, with the sharp knife of the Word, He begins to cut away the dead flesh. He cuts so close that He sometimes cuts into the quick, cutting away even things we considered good and necessary. Some of the wicks rebel against the tong ministry, and some have to be discarded, to be replaced by other oil saturated wicks that can burn brightly and give forth true light. It is not the place of the tongs to do the discarding of wicks, they simply cut away the burned over places. God does the discarding when necessary.
Then the lamps are again filled with the precious oil, and the lights shine again. Praise God for His Church, even in it's present imperfect state. Look at the candlestick with it's knops and flowers engraved on the branches. These are symbolic of the beautiful gifts of the Spirit with which God has endowed His Church. So much beauty, so much glory in this realm of the Spirit, this place of the supernatural ministries, yet it is greatly superceded by the glory beyond the third veil in the Holy of Holies.
Think not lightly of the light of God as it has been given through His supernatural Body, the Church. Jesus Christ has been glorified, and He has been magnified in the eyes of those who have entered into this realm of the Spirit, in spite of the darkness and failures of outer court religion. For no matter how dark the outside world is, there is light in the sanctuary that is not dependent upon natural light or understanding. When darkness covers the earth, and gross darkness the people, those who are saturated with the oil of the Spirit will rise and shine with the glory of God! Praise Jesus! And yet there is still a greater place in the Spirit beyond the light of this present imperfect Church.
The Holy of Holies
Let us now pass through the final veil into the most holy place. Here we find a glory that is beyond anything that mortal man has ever conceived of. We found that the light of the candlestick in the inner court was greater than the light in the outer court in that it burned continually and never went out to leave the inner court in darkness, so we find that in the Holy of Holies there is a light far greater than either of these others. It was not the natural light of the sun, for there were no windows. Neither was there any candlestick in this place. Nor did they need flashlights or torches to help them as they ministered before the mercy seat. Perhaps you might think that the High Priest went beyond the veil into pitch darkness, trying to feel his way around to find where to put the blood on the mercy seat. But this is not so. Beloved, there is a light in that most holy place! But it is not the natural light of man's understanding. Neither is it the flickering light of an imperfect Church that needs to be daily supplied with a fresh supply of the Spirit to keep the flesh from taking over.
The blinding glorious light in the Holy of Holies is the Shekinah glory of His Presence! For here is a place that has no need of the light of the sun, nor of the moon� for the Lord God and the Lamb are the light thereof! Praise the Lord! Here is a light that never goes out, never grows dim, and never needs a lamp refilled or a wick trimmed. This is an eternal light, a perfect light that brings the fullness of His knowledge and understanding. It is not a temporary glory that shall pass away, but it is the fullness of His glory and power and presence that comes upon His Church to abide forever! In this realm there are no limitations, no failures, no death, no defeat. Hallelujah to our God! The five-fold ministries of Ephesians 4:11 are temporary tools of God, used to perfect the Church or candlestick, UNTIL we come to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. With the coming of that perfect and eternally abiding light, there will be no tongs needed any further.
A Ministry of Glory
In Ezekiel, chapter 44, we find a priesthood ministry that enters into that within the veil, and ministers to the Lord God in the Holy of Holies. Not all the priesthood, not all the ministries come to this High Calling. There are those who minister to the needs of the people in the outer court. They are never allowed in the holiest place. This is reserved for some who are called "sons".
Those who enter beyond the veil are to minister unto the Lord Himself. And they wear garments of glory that bear none of the curse (which is symbolized by sweat). They have a glory in that holiest place that none of those on the outside can ever know. In fact, they are instructed to take off those glorious garments when they come out of the holiest place, lest they sanctify the people with their garments. For when they come out of His Presence, from that glory back into the visible presence of the people, they will appear just like the other priests. They will not wear their garments of glory in this visible earth realm. But they will be known to one another, and will know as they are known beyond the veil.
This glorious ministry unto the Lord far supercedes anything ever spoken or written by mankind. It is the Melchisedec ministry, the ministry springing from the power of an endless life! It is the Sons of God, manifesting all the glory of the risen Christ, making known to principalities and powers in heavenly places the manifold wisdom, the glory, and the power of our God! Human words can only faintly express the glory of this place. And the greatest of His prophets only see a small portion of His fullness as He draws aside the veil for a brief glimpse. So how can anyone fully describe what is contained in this glorious realm of the fullness of the Spirit without measure? It is our inheritance, bought for us and paid for by our Lord Jesus Christ.
Someone might feel that we are reaching too high, expecting too much. But it is only right that we be filled with all the fullness of God and inherit all things, and be filled with a glory that exceeds all past glories. For you see, WE are HIS inheritance. And you would not want to see God receive an imperfect, run-down, seedy, faulty, half-backslidden Church for His inheritance, now would you? He deserves better than that. Since we are His inheritance, He is going to see to it that we are a "glorious church, without a spot or wrinkle, or any such thing".
He Appears in His Glory
"When the Lord shall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory" (Psalms 102:16). So we see there is a time element involved. "When". Certain things must be accomplished before He appears in His glory. Zion must be built up. "To declare the name of the Lord in Zion" (verse 21). Hebrews 2:12 and Psalms 22:22 says that this is His brethren. "For whom He foreknew, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren." (Romans 8:29). "For which cause He is not ashamed to call us brethren, saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren�" (Hebrews 2:12) "For they (thy watchmen) shall see eye to eye when the Lord shall bring again Zion." (Isa 52:8)
"When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with Him in glory" (Colossians 3:4). Yes, you are going to appear in glory� in His glory� with Christ. This will make all the trials of life seem very small indeed. "But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings, that, when His Glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy."(1 Peter 4:13) "For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory" (2 Corinthians 4:17). "For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed IN US" (Romans 8:18). Where is this glory to be revealed? In heaven" In the sky? In angels? NO! It is to be revealed in US! The very next verse tells us that all creation earnestly waits and expects something to take place, and it is the Manifestation of the Sons of God! It is the unveiling of His Glory in His Sons! You will no longer wonder why God allowed this and that to happen to you. No more will there be a question as to why God let you suffer such circumstances, such conditions, such sorrow. For you see, in His great wisdom He knows of the glory that is being worked for us by our light afflictions, and He knows how happy we will be in that hour that He permitted us to suffer with Christ. So He patiently puts up with our complaints now, and over-rules our present pleas for an easier journey, because He wants the best for us, and the greatest glory possible. Praise His sweet Name!
To Become His Glory
"He appears in His glory". "He comes to be glorified in His saints" (2 Thessalonians 1:10). Where or who is His glory? Hebrews 1:3 says that Jesus, the Pattern Son, was the "brightness of His glory, and the express image of His person". As Jesus was to the Father, so are we to Him. We are to be His express image. And we are to the brightness of His glory. 1 Corinthians 11:7 "For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as HE IS THE IMAGE AND GLORY OF GOD." Man is the glory of God. Well, read it for yourself. It's there. I'm not talking about the man who staggers down the street in a drunken stupor. I'm talking about the man who follows Christ into that place behind the veil. The glory of God!
Through His Church that has gone beyond the veil, God will make the knowledge of His glory to fill the earth as the waters cover the sea (Habakkuk 2:14). "And blessed be His glorious Name forever, and let the whole earth be filled with His Glory. Amen" (Psalms 72:19) Proverbs 3:35 tells us that "The wise shall inherit glory". Yes, it is our inheritance. And since we are His inheritance, we are to become His glory.
Taking His Glory to the Nations
When the High Priest came out of His presence, from behind the veil, things began to happen. Not only to the priesthood, but to all the nation. For it was on the 10th day of the 7th month, the day of atonement, that the High Priest went to the Holy of Holies. That was also the day, in the year of Jubilee, that the trumpet of Jubilee began to blow. (Leviticus 25:9) They were to make this trumpet to blow throughout all the land, signifying that all men were free, all prison doors were open, all slaves were released, and every man was to return to his inheritance. If any man's inheritance was sold, lost, or stolen, it had to be returned to him at the sounding of the trumpet of Jubilee.
Now it is easy to see what this means. It simply means that out from behind that veil will come a company of sons who will have the message of the everlasting Gospel, the same message of the fullness of God that Jesus preached, and will do the works of Jesus and even greater works because of the glory of His presence in that Holy of Holies into which they have entered., There will be no failures. Jesus had none. They will manifest the glory of the Father, as Jesus did. They will have the Spirit without measure, as was given to Jesus. There will be no limit to the power of this Sonship.
This little stone, cut out of the mountain, will strike the kingdoms of this world at their very base. All powers in this world will be rendered weak and helpless before the mighty demonstration of these Sons of God. Where ever they are heard, their message or trumpet will sound the finish of Satan's power and kingdom. All the prisoners will be loosed from all bondages. Sin, sickness, and finally death, will all be destroyed.
What a revival! What a time of rejoicing! Surely the Feast of Tabernacles in the 7th month is a feast of joy. I wouldn't miss it for anything. Especially after having preached it to others (1 Corinthians 9:27) I would not want to be a castaway. Seeing the doors fly open, prison house after prison house, seeing the prisoners loosed one by one, village by village, and nation by nation, and seeing the princes of the powers darkness bound by chains and fetters of iron (Psalms 149:8-9) will be much better than eating pie in the sky somewhere in a feast while the world suffers in torment.
Certainly there will be judgment on the earth. For during this glorious Day of the Lord, Satan and all his hordes will be raging, having been cast out of the heavens and knowing that his time is short. All who are not sealed by God in their foreheads (Revelation 7:3, 14:1) will suffer the wrath of that awful day. But we are not appointed unto wrath (1 Thessalonians 5:9), but to obtain full deliverance and salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. And though Satan rages for awhile, he is defeated. And though the nations drink of the cup of the wrath of God, as they certainly deserve, yet in His mercy He shall send them deliverance in the person of His Son, His many-membered Son! Glory to God! The world of men has never dreamed of the glory that shall be manifested in these last days. Right here on this earth. Well, wait and see, if you cannot believe. Or be part of it, if you can believe for it.
There are several false doctrines which keep men from believing the Truth of what God is doing. One of these, and one of the most widely accepted though doctrinally weak and scripturally unfounded, is the traditional doctrine of the so-called "rapture". It teaches that God is going to spend 2,000 years building an army and girding them with a spiritual armor (helmet, breastplate, shield, sword, etc.), and then jerk them suddenly from the field of battle just as the real war of the ages begins. It implies that God's poor little weak Church is just not able to overcome the Anti-christ, so they must be taken off to get a glorified body and escape the battle. It tells us that God actually did let some of His children be thrown into a fiery furnace, let some be sawn asunder, be fed to the lions, be tortured on the Roman rack, burnt at the stake, and only God knows what all else� but that He is too good to let us easy-living Americans of the last days be on this earth during a time of great trouble and tribulation (though we are promised the seal of God to protect us). Another false teaching (made necessary to bolster up the first one) is that God is going to train His Church to be good soldiers of Jesus Christ for 20 centuries, opening up New Testament revelation to them and giving them a burden for lost souls and for the evangelization of the billions of the earth� and then at the last minute take the end time church out and give the job of evangelization over to the Jews, who are supposed to all become transformed into great evangelists in 24 hours. And the natural Jews who never knew the truths of the New Testament, who never had the ministry of Apostles and prophets and pastors to perfect them, are supposed to go forth and do what the Church has failed to do in 2,000 years. Does this make sense to you? Of course not! People only believe it is tradition, and because they have heard it preached all their lives. The Holy Ghost never gave any such revelation.
The glory of God will be taken to the nations! But it will be by His Church, I mean His real living Spirit-filled Church. As those who are not defiled with harlot church systems go beyond the veil into the glory of His presence, receiving the fullness of His Spirit, and then turning to the nations of the world as fountains of living water, pouring forth rivers of His Spirit. This is what His Word declares, and this is the way it's going to be! You who have been called and chosen for this great Day of the Lord can rejoice in the perfect plan of God! And know that He is able to perform that which He has promised. Praise be to His glorious Name! Rejoice in the Lord thy God, for He is mighty toward thee! Yield thyself unto His will, and His glory shalt thou see. He is imparting special abilities unto those who are His own, and to ye who will believe it, He gives the fullness of His throne. A new name has He written in thy forehead, and hidden manna for thee to eat; have no fear of the adversary, for God's army suffers no defeat. Side by side shall they march forward, not thrusting one another; for Satan is mine enemy, and ye, dear one, my brother. The earth shall reel and rock and tremble like a leaf, as that day explodes upon them as the coming of a thief. For when they least expect it, the cup of wrath shall pour. The time is very soon now, it is even at the door! So wake, and rise, beloved; put on thy garments fair. The wedding feast is ready, thou shalt His glory share. Thy Lord doth manifest thee, doth bring thee forth in power; not in another age, saints, this is the very hour! Rejoice, rejoice, for thy God reigneth!!
Chapter 8 - THE YEAR OF JUBILEE
Trumpets were blowing, slaves were saying goodbye to their masters, prison doors were opening and the prison doors were opening and the prisoners were singing and shouting as they left the prisons. What was going on? It was the Day of Atonement in the Year of Jubilee. Old men had waited 50 years for this to happen, and young people had never seen a day like it before.
The law of the Jubilee is given in Leviticus 25. "And thou shalt number seven sabbaths of years unto thee, seven times seven years; and the space of the seven sabbaths of years shall be unto thee forty and nine years. THEN shalt thou cause the trumpet of the Jubilee to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month, in the Day of Atonement shall ye make the trumpet sound throughout all your land. And ye shall hallow the fiftieth year, and PROCLAIM LIBERTY throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof; it shall be a Jubilee unto you; AND YE SHALL RETURN EVERY MAN UNTO HIS POSSESSION, and ye shall return every man unto his family." (Leviticus 25:8-10)
The rest of the chapter goes into detail on the law of Jubilee, but to be brief, let me say that every fifty years a great change took place in Israel. Everything was to be restored just as it was when the tribes originally inherited the land. If a man waxed poor and sold his land and became a slave or servant to others, this continued only until the Year of Jubilee. At that time all slaves were set free, and every man returned to his original inheritance.
Freedom From Bondage
I hope you can see what this means to the human race. There was a good practical reason for this law being given by God to preserve natural Israel in the land. Without it there was a good possibility of one tribe eventually losing all it's inheritance, and it's identity. This would finally mean the deterioration and breakdown of the twelve tribes. But there is a far deeper reason for this law. It has a spiritual meaning, and held out a hope to humanity that God had set a Day when all bondage would cease and everything that God had given to mankind in the beginning would be restored.
Let me give you an illustration of what this law meant to Israel. In 2 Kings chapter four we read of a case where a widow is faced with a large debt left by her husband, and the creditors are coming to take her two sons into slavery to pay off the debt. In this case, Elisha provided a miracle to pay off the debt. But in many cases like this there was no Elisha around with a miracle, and the sons were taken away from their home and their mother to work for a stranger as a slave. But only until the Year of Jubilee. Let me give you an example�
Little Joseph had been taken from his mother and his sisters when he was only twelve years old. His slave-master was a hard task master and compelled him to work long hours. Their own home and farm had been taken over by strangers, and his mother and sisters had moved in with relatives. He missed his family, and often thought of his carefree childhood when the children had played together and had such fun. No time for fun now. There was a big debt to pay off, and the rate it was going it looked like he would never get it paid off. He had been working now for six years, and hardly made a dent in the huge debt. What a miserable way to live, he often thought, yet as long as he was alive, there was hope.
One day, soon after his eighteenth birthday, he was cutting brush in the field when he heard a lot of commotion. People were running, and shouting and laughing. He heard a trumpet blowing in the distance. Finally he was able to stop someone and asked what was going on. "Why son, haven't you heard? This is the Year of Jubilee. Just started today. Can't you hear the trumpet? Oh, I guess you're so young you've never seen a Jubilee before. It's the time when all debts are paid, and all slaves are freed, and all homes restored to their rightful owners. Throw down your tools, son, you're free as of right now. As soon as you hear the Jubilee Trumpet. Go home to your family, and sit under your own fig tree. What rightfully belongs to you is really yours now."
You can imagine his joy as he throws down the tools of slavery, bids his master goodbye, and heads for his home and family. It was nothing he had done, he never did get his debt paid off, he had not earned his freedom. It was just the sovereign law of God that set him free. All he had to do was believe it, and head for home.
Return to His Possessions
Yes, Joseph went back to his father's farm, and told the strangers to move out. He started living in his own house again, and eating the fruit of his own land. No more working as an hireling, he was working for himself, at his own inheritance.
In the beginning, God set Man over all the works of His hands. He made Man the supreme ruler of the earth, the owner of the whole world. All the animals obeyed him and were in subjection to him. The earth brought forth abundantly for him. When sin came, all that changed, and man became a slave, earning his living by the sweat of his face. He came into bondage to sin and Satan, and believe me, Satan is a hard taskmaster. Man lost his relationship to God, and life became at time almost unbearable.
But God gave a promise of restoration, of victory over Satan. "Her seed shall bruise thy head" God told the serpent. And in Romans 16:20, Paul repeats the promise: "And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly." Man will surely return to his possession. All that was lost in the fall shall be restored. And Acts 3:21 says that Jesus shall remain in heaven until the times of this restoration. No second coming of Christ until the time of restoration of all that was lost. Praise God!
The Opening of the Prison
Jesus said (Isaiah 61:1, Luke 4:18) that the Father HAD SENT HIM TO OPEN THE PRISON DOORS AND SET THE CAPTIVES FREE. He was, of course, referring to the year of Jubilee. For Christ IS the Jubilee. In Him is freedom, and life, and restoration. "He looked down from the height of his sanctuary; from heaven did the Lord behold the earth; to hear the groaning of the prisoner; to loose those that are appointed to death". (Psalms 102:19-20) He has seen the condition of humanity, and tho we made our own debts and got ourselves into the condition we're in, yet He has determined to come and set us free and pay our debts. This was the purpose of His coming, and this is the power of His resurrection.
This is the ministry of reconciliation that He has given to His Body. In Isaiah 58:6 we read: "Is not this the fast that I have chosen? To loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?" And notice the glorious promise in verse 12: "And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places; thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in." Praise God, His plan is much larger than most of us realize. This work of this ministry is not just to build a larger Sunday School, start a new denomination or make an old one richer. But it is to bring all of creation back into right relationship with God their creator, and to restore man back to his former glory and power.
Yes, it is to blow the trumpet of Jubilee, and to set all men free. For this trumpet of Jubilee is to be blown by the redeemed Body of Christ. This is the work of the ministry for the saints of God, and the reason for their perfection now (Ephesians 4:11-13). No angelic beings shall blow this trumpet or sound the release of humanity from the bondage of corruption. This honor has been given to the saints. (Psalms 149:9). And all creation is waiting for and groaning for the manifestation of this company of sons who shall sound the trumpet and give them release.
On the Day of Atonement
Notice that the law states that the Trumpet of Jubilee first sounds on the Day of Atonement, the tenth day of the seventh month. This is the day when the High Priest goes beyond the Veil into the Holy of Holies. And hear me today, friends, and hear me good� there shall be no release from corruption and death, for humanity and creation until a Body of saints follows Jesus into the Holy of Holies, into the very presence of God. We have eaten of the Passover Lamb, our sins have been forgiven, the blood is on the doorpost of our heart. Wonderful. That is good and necessary. And we have partaken of the Feast of Pentecost, been filled with the Spirit and entered into the supernatural realm of the Spirit. Praise God for that! But death still operates in the earth, and pain and sorrow and sickness and affliction still torment the human race. Even the Christian people, including Spirit-filled Pentecostal people, still help fill up the hospitals and doctors' offices.
But now we have come to the time of the Feast of Tabernacles, and we have already heard the blowing of the trumpets for this feast. The sounding of trumpets simply means the giving of a warning or a message. The message for Tabernacles has been and is being sounded. This started on the first day of the seventh month. But it is on the tenth day that the Day of Atonement comes, we go beyond the Veil into the fullness of God, and we start sounding the Trumpet of Jubilee for the liberation of all mankind. "Make the trumpet sound throughout all your land." Everyone shall hear the trumpet, everyone shall benefit from it. But only a few shall blow it. To this few shall be given a message that shall have such divine authority, that where ever it is heard, devils will flee and everlasting life shall be established.
I want you to know friends, that this world is about to enter into a revival such as has never been seen since the fall of man. Doubt it if you will, but I assure you that you will feel the impact of it before it is over. All hell shall be shaken, the earth and heavens shall shake also. Everything that cannot be shaken will remain, and that which remains shall be of His Kingdom and under His dominion. Because a trumpet is being put into the hands of a ministry that has died to self and gone through the veil into the realm of Life.
The Last Trump
When the Apostle Paul wrote 1 Corinthians 15:52 concerning "the last trump", nothing had yet been written about the seven trumps of Revelation. So he was not speaking of the "last" of these seven trumps, as we have been taught. Paul was speaking of a change coming to humanity, of mortal putting on immortality, of corruption putting on incorruption. And he was speaking of it from the promise given in the law concerning the blowing of the trumpet of Jubilee.
But what did he mean by "the last trump"? Notice that at the dedication of Israel's first Temple in 2 Chronicles 5:12, there were 120 priests blowing on trumpets. All the Temple was finished, all the holy things put in their place, and as the 120 trumpets were blown, then the glory and presence of God entered and filled the Temple. Notice now in Acts 1:15 that at the time of the dedication of the early Church, God's living Temple, there were 120 "priests" of a new order sounding their trumpets in 14 different languages (Acts 2:8). God's glory so filled this "Temple" that 3,000 souls came to Christ in that one day. This was the second witness of the 120 trumpets. But two is not the number of completeness. It takes a third time.
From the fall of Adam to Abraham was 2,000 years, or 40 times 50 years. Forty Jubilee periods passed over humanity, forty trumpets were blown in the heavens by way of promise. But forty was not the end. With Abraham, God re-established His promise. "In you shall all the nations of the earth be blessed". Another 40 Jubilees passed, and in 2,000 more years came Jesus Christ. But 80 was not the finish. With Jesus, God paid the debt of humanity, and purchased their redemption. But in Ephesians 1:14 Paul says that the redemption of that purchased possession is still ahead of us. Peter says in 1 Peter 1:4-5 that it will be revealed in the last time. And now, since the coming of Christ it has been either 1967 years or 1998 years (approximately) depending on whether you judge the length of a year by the Gregorian calendar or Bible figures. Either way, there has been 39 Jubilee periods passed over humanity since Christ. This makes a total of 119 Jubilee trumpets that have sounded since the fall of Adam. Now let me say that we have come to the time for the 120th trump; there will come a change, in reality. The last and permanent "Temple" of God will be dedicated, and out of that Holy of Holies shall come a ministry of Life and restoration. Praise God!
Why anyone would not want to see a revival in the earth, and humanity loosed from the bondage of death, is more than I can understand. But strange as it seems, there are those who seem to get very angry at any talk about a total victory on the battlefield. Seems that their only interest is in getting out of the battle and going to heaven in a rapture. But let me tell you that God is not preparing His Army for an "escape". He is getting His "mighty ones" ready to bind all the powers of hell, and set up the Kingdom of God on earth.
This is not some fairy tale, or fantasy. It shall actually be done, by very real people, in very real places, through the very real power of God.
This thing shall not be done in a corner. The nations shall hear the trumpet of Jubilee. They shall hear it loud and clear. It is what all creation has been groaning for, as it is part of the operation of God in the Manifestation of His Sons. This is the everlasting Gospel, sounded from a heavenly realm in the Spirit where the Sons dwell. And when they hear, they shall live. All creation shall enjoy a full restoration. No restoration shall come to the human race through the efforts of Adamic man. Thus saith the Lord! The political efforts to build a "Great Society", the efforts to end poverty, the youth programs, the civil rights legislation� the religious ecumenical movements, and all other efforts of natural man to bring us into a Utopia shall utterly fail! Wars, crime, hate, riots, poverty and suffering shall continue to increase until the Sons of God appear on the scene and the Trumpet of Jubilee is heard. Then shall come deliverance for humanity... out of Zion!
Hid with Christ in God
The activity of the Sons of God is not visible or known to the world in general or the religious world in particular. This company of Overcomers who have been called into the High Calling of God is hidden away in the secret place of the Most High. The world is not aware of what God is going to do with them and through them. They are now in the crucible of the Great Refiner. They walk with God in the midst of the furnace of fire. The world is not sitting up to take notice of their great exploits.
A false religion can produce a crowd of thousands, fill the largest auditoriums, and get front page billing in the newspapers, tho they have none of the Life of Jesus Christ to offer the people. I have often marveled at how great multitudes will loyally flock to some dead religious gathering, faithfully supporting a false cult that offers no Truth, no Life, no hope of deliverance for mankind. They can do this because this is their hour, the day when Satan rules the minds of most men. But his time is short. The day is at hand for the last trump to start blowing. That trump shall blow first in Zion. The day of the Lord is at hand! There shall be a Revival.
Cling, if you will, to a theology that gives the multitudes of lost mankind over to Satan, the Antichrist, and a devil's hell. Hang on to that doctrine, if you must, that offers only a "flight to the sky" as an escape for God's great Army. But let me warn you, friends, that such false theology and theory of men shall fail you in that great and notable Day of the Lord. There shall be a Revival. And it shall come with a great sound of a Trumpet. The trumpet of Jubilee.
From Behind the Veil
Notice, again, that the Jubilee trumpet starts blowing on the Day of Atonement, just preceding the Year of Jubilee. It is blown on the day that the High Priest goes past the Veil into the Holiest of Holies, into the Presence of the Ark of God. The Revival that all creation cries out for is waiting for a High Priestly company, a royal order of Kings and Priests, to enter behind that Veil and meet Jesus in the "air". For He has already entered into this place as a forerunner for us.
There shall be no Jubilee until this "passing through the Veil" has been accomplished by the Body of the Son, the High Priest. And then, glory be to God, out of that realm of Life and Glory shall come forth a ministry that shall make all other forms of religion obsolete. A people shall walk this earth, tho dwelling in the heavens and sitting on His throne, and they shall meet every human need and cast down every Satanic stronghold. There shall be no failures with them. There shall be no mistakes, for they have the mind of Christ, and they speak with His authority.
What I am saying to you is not some theory I have dreamed up, nor is it my interpretation of a few isolated scriptures. It is the word of the Lord to you! Be ye also ready, for in such an hour as ye think not, the son of man cometh. Just because I do not believe that the purpose of His coming is to "rapture" us away as an "escape" from the antichrist, I am sometimes accused of not looking for His coming. Nothing could be further from the truth. He must appear. First to His sons who are looking for Him to come and bring us to full salvation (Hebrews 9:28 Amplified).
Perhaps you feel my language in this message is too mysterious or spiritualized for you to fully understand what I am saying. I try to be as plain and simple in my words as possible, but it is very difficult to explain the glory we are seeing in the Spirit, or to break these tremendous eternal truths down into mere human language. But I have said, and will say it once more� that our God has spoken, His voice did roar. He will send forth a people, who are humble and plain; He will cause them to descend as a great latter rain. Anointed of God, to the nations they'll go: from the mountain of God like a River they'll flow. They are sealed by His Spirit, marked as His own; they speak with authority, for they sit in His throne. They have not sought for escape, nor a flight to the sky. But in the realms of the Spirit they've ascended so high. They have no reason to fear, nor a cause for dread. There is hope for all, for even the dead. For those in the graves shall hear the voice of the Son, shall arise and know that He is the One. There is one Overcomer, one Son, and one King. When this truth breaks upon you, it'll cause you to sing. You are bone of His bones, and you are one with the Head; His image you'll bear, and Adam you'll shed. Well, Glory to God, don't you see what I mean? The filth is all gone, and now you are clean. Holy and pre, as the Father above; His commandment fulfilled, because of His Love. You see, I speak as a prophet of the Jubilee year. It's not afar off, but I declare it is near. Be ready, be ready, oh dear friend of mine; His glory is raising, upon you to shine. The night is far spent, a new Day is now breaking; the darkness is fleeing, hell's gates are now shaking. The demonic hordes are trembling in fear, God's Army is rising, His coming is near. Rejoice I say, rejoice every one, for the sound that you hear is the voice of the Son. He marches to battle, He knows no defeat; His Army is great, and the victory is sweet. Every enemy of God shall go down in the fray, every pain, every sorrow shall vanish the Day. He'll prove Himself a wise God to be, and He'll do it on earth that creation might see. Out of sin He hath called me, His word to declare; those who believe His glory will share. Hallelujah!
The Sound of Life
Much has been said about the "life message". Much of it has been dead theology, or boastful claims that could not be backed up, and the preaching of such has brought only death and disappointment. Some of those making big claims that they had already "entered in" and could not die, have already died� leaving a firm testimony of the falseness of their claims. The true Sons of God do not have to make claims or "take it by faith". They receive Life as an inheritance, and when they manifest it and minister it to others in reality, they will not have to wear a badge of a sign around their neck proclaiming themselves to be something. Those who minister out of the realm of the Holy of Holies will touch the needs of people. And those people will know that they have come in contact with the Son of God.
This thing I am talking about is above and beyond anything ever manifested in any man born of Adam. We have most certainly borne the image of Adam. We shall just as surely bear the image of the Christ. There is no way to fully explain the glory of it. Earthly illustrations and human language are far too weak. Descriptions of the thing ahead fall far short of the reality.
The task of delivering all humanity is far too great for anyone. In fact, it is an impossible task. That is why only a Sovereign God can do it, through a people He has chosen. Praise His wonderful Name! Prepare yourself� the Year of Jubilee is at hand!
Find Your Own Mansion
"Let every man return to his family" in the year of Jubilee, says the Bible. (Leviticus 25:10) There is a habitation prepared for each one. Jesus said: "In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you." Now let me show you a glorious mystery� "In my Father's house�" The Bible teaches us in many places that the Church, God's people, is the House of God. You are His house, in which He lives. "Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them" (Revelation 21:3) "In my Father's house are MANY MANSIONS". This is the only place in the Bible the word "mansion" is used. It is translated from the Greek word "mone", which is used twice in the Bible. The other place is in John 14:23 where it is translated "abode". Jesus said: "If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and MAKE OUR ABODE WITH HIM". God will come to that man and live in him, make that man His abode, mansion, or dwelling place. In the Father's House (the Church) there are many dwelling places, abodes for the Father to dwell. There are different realms of existence or life for His people. Jesus said: "I go to prepare a place for you�" He said He would come to receive us to Himself, that where He is, we might be also. Where is He? Dwelling in the highest form of life possible. "God hath highly exalted Him, giving Him a name above every name". (Philippians 2:9) Did you know that you, as an Overcomer, will have that name written upon you? (Revelation 3:12). Paul saw that the highest, most glorious place prepared for us in eternity was in Christ, the place prepared for the Overcomer. He desired this place, and said that he "pressed toward the mark for the prize of the High Calling of God in Christ Jesus".
When the Jubilee Trumpet begins to blow, mankind will start returning from it's fallen state in sin, back to that perfect state of fellowship with God. But each one will "return to his family". Each has his own mansion, house, dwelling place in God. Will yours be on a lower plane of the Spirit, or will you press into that High Calling? Will you settle for no less than God's best? Praise our wonderful Saviour; He has prepared us a place. It is time to move in! The Year of Jubilee is upon us!
For more messages by Bill Britton, write to:
Church in Action, PO Box 707, Springfield, MO 65801-0707 USA