THESE ARE THEY ...
To stand where we stand now, at the juncture or the crossroads of the ages, is a most profound and privileged experience. Very few have experienced what we are experiencing now in relation to God and His Kingdom, as that Kingdom comes to the earth in a greater way. Not since Jesus walked the shores of Galilee and chose twelve men to assist Him has a people been blessed with the extraordinary opportunities that are now available to the chosen elect of the Lord. But I wonder how many of us really understand and appreciate all we have in God, and the tremendous, spiritual opportunities and responsibilities we face. Father is calling for a holy remnant who will stand with Him between the present confluence of the ages and bring about the changes necessary to fully manifest the glories of His Kingdom. And we will do all this, not by the works of the flesh, but by the operation of the Spirit of the Lord within us and through us! A holy remnant must come forth whose only ambition is to do the perfect will of their Father in Heaven! And our Father’s will for this new Day may very well be diametrically opposed to what His will was for the last age, which was the church age!
When Christ came to the earth in the Person of Jesus, a new age was born. A spiritual revolution took place as the principles of the old age ended and the greater principles of the new took effect. The new age that Jesus heralded then was the church age! In the same way, the coming of Christ to tabernacle or dwell within His elect now in a greater way is also the birth of a new and more spiritual age of greater Light, Life and Glory. And this new age, which we are proclaiming now, is the blessed age of the Kingdom of God on earth! If anything is pure, perfect, undefiled and new, it must be centered in Christ! He must be both the center and the circumference of anything fresh and new! Without Christ or apart from Him, nothing will ever be pure, perfect, undefiled or new (Ecc. 1:9)! The revelation and manifestation of Christ to His people must be paramount in our lives. He must be the Center of our lives if anything new is to succeed and fulfill the prophetic Word of our Father.
It was also important, from the people’s standpoint, that our Lord Jesus Christ should have a respected and meaningful genealogy. For that reason, the genealogy of Jesus is rooted in Israel. The prophet of the Lord, who prophesied of the birth of Jesus, declared that He would be born of the tribe of Judah (Mic. 5:2). The genealogy of Jesus is given in the first book of the New Testament, which also is the book of the beginning of the new age of grace or the church age. That genealogy begins as follows: “The book of the generation (or genesis) of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham” (Mt. 1:1). It was important for the people then living that their Messiah should be “the son of David, (and) the son of Abraham.” They needed a Savior, a Deliverer and a King and undoubtedly would have rejected someone from outside their ranks. So the Lord gave them One from among their own people, Who would save them from their sins and establish the first order of His Kingdom on earth, which was the new order of the Kingdom of God within the hearts of the people (Lu. 17:21).
And now, in this new Kingdom Day, God is sending the next phase of His Kingdom to the earth, which is the beginning of the era of the reign of Christ in a greater way. We are now in a transitional period! It may even be another revolutionary period! The Kingdom of God is progressing from the Kingdom within us to the Kingdom manifested outside of us more externally. We are moving or progressing from the old age of the church to the new order of the universal reign of Christ in more completeness and fullness. Christ has always reigned! David sang a psalm declaring the reign of the Lord (1 Chron. 16:31 & Ps. 47:8), and Nebuchadnezzar also confidently affirmed the reign of the Lord over all (Dan. 4:34). But there is to be a future time, a time to come, foretold by the prophets, when “the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High” (Da. 7:27). At that time also, “he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father” (Rev. 2:26-27).
This is that time; this is that Day! Christ is being more revealed or more manifest now as the King of kings and the Lord of lords! He is revealing Himself more to His elect, and is also affirming and confirming their “genealogy” in the Kingdom of God, which is their relationship with the past order of things in the Spirit, just as He affirmed the genealogy of Jesus to begin the last age. God is not starting over! He is bringing to completion, to fullness or to final manifestation that which He began many centuries ago! Although this is a time of a distinct transition, or a spiritual revolution, it is also a time of the continuation of the plan and purpose of our Father, which He began in the Garden of Eden. Jesus said, “My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, AND TO FINISH HIS WORK” (Jo. 4:34). And that is our calling as well! We are not called to start something totally new! But we are called to do the will of our Father, as Jesus was, and also to FINISH THE WONDERFUL WORK OF OUR FATHER (Rom. 9:27-28)!
The work that God began in Eden, which progressed and grew among mankind on earth with the calling of Abraham, Moses, David, the prophets, the apostles of Jesus and many others, along with the coming of Christ, shall be completed, for God shall finish the work that He has already begun. He is finishing His work today with a people whom He has called out of the old church order of the past. And our genealogy in the Kingdom of our Father is up to date and just where it should be, for we are sons of God, called and chosen of Him. God is our Father (Jo. 20:17), Abraham is our father in the faith (Ro. 4:11-18), Christ is our elder Brother (Mk. 3:35, Lu. 8:21, & Rev. 22:9), and we have many brethren here in this earthly realm and also in the heavenly realm of the Spirit of the Lord (Rev. 19:10).
The entire New Testament was written by anointed messengers of the Lord who were writing and prophesying as from that era, which was the era or the order of the church. The prophetic truths some of them declared were for a future day and time. John, while on the Isle of Patmos, revealed truths concerning the future, truths which are now coming into view. The Word of the Lord given by John, which foretold of the Spirit’s present work, is thus given, “And I saw A NEW HEAVEN AND A NEW EARTH: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away” (Rev. 21:1-4).
Although his spiritual existence, his state of being, or his “ministry,” was in the church order, John, by the Spirit, saw beyond his day, to the time when there would be a new heaven and a new earth. We can well imagine what the earth will be like when it is made new by the Spirit, but what about the heavens? Have we considered what it means when the Word tells us there will be “a new heaven ?” Before we consider the new heavens, we should first understand what the heavens really are, and what it is that will be made new. The Greek word, translated “heaven,” means the sky, a realm above, the dwelling place of God. Heaven is the realm of Spirit! It is not the literal sky or the natural heavens above the earth; but Heaven is the dwelling place of God. It is not a satellite or a planet in the sky, nor is it a literal land or country somewhere in the far reaches of space. The dwelling place of God is the realm of Spirit! God is Spirit, and He inhabits or dwells in realms of Spirit, whether within us or in the Heavens of Spirit! The foundation, walls, streets of gold and gates of pearl of that heavenly “city” are all symbolic, showing the beauty, glory and perfection of the saints of that heavenly realm of Spirit. There is a spiritual realm called “Heaven,” which is the dwelling place of God, and there also is a realm of Spirit within us. And it is the spirit within us where God also abides. Heaven, therefore, whether old or new, is the high and holy realm of Spirit!
Heaven is the unseen realm of Spirit. By the Spirit-power of Heaven, which is the power of God’s Spirit, the Lord governs the earth and everything in it. Heaven also is the realm of His throne; it is the realm of Spirit that is made new when the Lord determines to do a new thing in the earth. There was a certain order of Spirit that existed in Heaven when the law was given to Israel. But when the Lord changed the order and abolished the age of the law and the prophets, He began that process by replacing the old, former Heavens with a new Heavens of Spirit. The church age or order then replaced the age of the law and the prophets, for a new Heaven had been established by the Lord. If someone desired to work after the old order, and they begged, pleaded, fasted and prayed, asking the Lord to bless the works of the old Jewish order, He would not grant their request, for God had brought forth a new Heaven, which is a new spiritual order, or a new way of doing things on earth.
Once again, in this new Day, the Lord has purposed to do a new thing in the earth. But since all power and authority to do anything new in the earth must come from Heaven, from His throne, or from the realm of Spirit, God must create a new Heaven, or a new realm of Spirit, which He has done. And when the Lord brings forth a new Heaven, He is, by that sovereign act, changing the order of things, that He might do a new thing in the earth. You can beg and plead with the Lord, fast and pray earnestly, asking Him to bless the old order, church works in this new Day, but He may not answer you, for our Father is doing a new thing! There is now a new Heaven, a new throne realm, or a new realm of Spirit, which governs all God’s work on earth! And with the coming forth of this new Heaven, “the former things are passed away.” God has established a new spiritual order, beginning in the Heavens, and that new spiritual order is beginning to change everything spiritual that pertains to the earth, so that, in the fullness of Father’s time, a new earth shall also come forth! And now I join John in declaring, by the Spirit, “And I saw A NEW HEAVEN AND A NEW EARTH: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away.”
The prophet Isaiah also foretold of this Day, when he prophesied by the Spirit, saying, “Behold, I WILL MAKE THEE A NEW SHARP THRESHING INSTRUMENT HAVING TEETH: thou shalt thresh the mountains, and beat them small, and shalt make the hills as chaff. Thou shalt fan them, and the wind shall carry them away, and the whirlwind shall scatter them: and thou shalt rejoice in the LORD, and shalt glory in the Holy One of Israel” (Is. 41:15-16). This prophecy could be applied to the church age, for when the Lord abolished the old age of the law and the prophets, He did indeed give His people “a new sharp threshing instrument,” in the form of the gifts of the Spirit, etc. But another spiritual change has been initiated by the Lord, for there now is a new Heaven, or a new realm of Spirit! God is doing a new thing in the earth, and the previous order of things has passed away! In this new, Kingdom order, we will not work as we did in the past order, for the Lord is giving us “A NEW SHARP THRESHING INSTRUMENT HAVING TEETH.” And with that new, sharp, threshing instrument, the Christ company will “thresh the mountains, and beat them small, and shalt make the hills as chaff. Thou shalt fan them, and the wind shall carry them away, and the whirlwind shall scatter them: and thou shalt rejoice in the LORD, and shalt glory in the Holy One of Israel.”
Never before, in the history of the world, has this prophecy
been fulfilled in its entirety! The believers of the church age were truly given
a new, sharp threshing instrument, which was very different from the one of
the previous age. But with that new “instrument,” they most certainly
did not “thresh the mountains, and beat them small,” nor did they
“make the hills as chaff.” Mountains and hills, in the prophetic
Word, represent the governments and kingdoms of man, both large and small. The
church age has come and gone and none of those “mountains” and “hills”
have been beaten small and blown away. The wind of the Spirit has not yet carried
the governments of man away, for they are still keeping us in bondage, and are
more powerful and corrupt than when that prophecy was given. But with this new,
Kingdom, threshing instrument, which is coming forth in this new Day, the governments
of the nations shall indeed be beaten small and blown away by the Spirit of
the Lord, just as a natural, literal threshing instrument separates the chaff
from the grain and then blows the chaff away. Then shall the Word of the Lord
be fulfilled, which has said, “he that overcometh, and keepeth my works
unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: And he shall rule them
with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they (the governments of
the nations) be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.”
The Lord is giving us “a new sharp threshing instrument having teeth.” What do you suppose that means? What could that “new sharp threshing instrument” be? The first thing we must know about it is that this is a NEW threshing instrument. It is not at all like anything we have known or used in the past. Forget the gifts of the Spirit, forget the five-fold ministry of apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers and evangelists, and forget anything else you thought you knew of New Testament church order, with all of its works! God is doing a new thing! He is giving us “a new sharp threshing instrument having teeth.” Therefore, we will have to think in terms of doing things on earth according to God’s NEW WAY, not our own way, which is the old way, or the way we were accustomed to doing things in the past. A NEW HEAVEN HAS COME FORTH. And that new Heaven is a new Spiritual order, with new principles and new plans for the Kingdom of God on earth, which will provide us with NEW METHODS OF WORKING WITH THE LORD and doing His perfect will on earth, during this new, Kingdom Day!
It is difficult for us to imagine what that new ministry will be like, for we tend to think of “ministry” in the context of church order, which is the old order of the past. But a new ministry exists in the Heavens of God’s Spirit, and those who are Spirit-led and Spirit-directed will be able to read, see, hear and receive that new ministry, in the Spirit and by the Spirit. The Lord’s chosen elect are ready for change, for they have progressed spiritually with the Lord, as the holy Spirit has led them. “These are they...” who are motivated by the Spirit, and are therefore able to discern the will and the way of the Lord pertaining to His Kingdom, for the Heavens of Spirit are open to them (Jo. 1:51)!
Zerubbabel, Called to Finish the House of the Lord
Zechariah prophesied the Word of the Lord, when he said, “The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house; his hands shall also FINISH IT; and thou shalt know that the LORD of hosts hath sent me unto you” (Zech. 4:9). Zerubbabel laid the foundation of the house of the Lord, and the prophet declared that he would also finish it, just as we shall finish His work today! Not much is known about Zerubbabel, but it is thought that he was the head of the tribe of Judah at that time, and was instrumental in rebuilding the temple in Jerusalem. Whoever Zerubbabel was, he is a type of Christ, the Branch, Who was to build the true Temple, which is the Temple not made with hands. Zerubbabel may have been Christ Himself, Who has appeared occasionally in the earthly realm for an example or as a prophetic forerunner of that which is to come! Only Christ could be the Builder of the true Temple, of which we are a vital, living part. And only Christ can be the One who is to sit and rule on His throne, become a priest on that throne, and establish true and everlasting peace in all the earth (see Zech. 6:12-13).
The name, Zerubbabel, means to flow out of Babylon. Zerub means to flow out and Babel refers to the infamous city of bondage. That is a very significant name, with deep meaning for every one of us. It is said that Zerubbabel was born in Babylon during the captivity, but that he was among the captives who left or “flowed out of” Babylon and returned to Jerusalem to rebuild the temple. Zerubbabel, therefore, represents the saints of the Lord of this hour. We too were “born” in Babylon, that is, our spiritual beginning most likely was within the churches that have since become the great harlot, Babylon. The churches were not always corrupt. The churches were not always confusion and the carnal works of man. Therefore, the churches were not always Babylon!
I was abundantly blessed of the Lord by the “Latter Rain” outpouring of the Spirit, which took place in churches all across this nation and around the world, from 1948 to 1953. I will never ever forget those wonderful times of rich spiritual blessings and the manifestations of the Life of Christ, which took place in some churches. Like Zerubbabel, I can also say that I was born in Babylon, or in what has since become Babylon. But, by the Spirit of the Lord, I began to FLOW OUT OF BABYLON! And my nature, my spiritual intent and instinct, which came from the Lord, is to KEEP FLOWING OUT OF BABYLON! And when we began to FLOW OUT OF BABYLON, by the leading of the Spirit, the churches that once were locations of the Lord’s rich spiritual life and blessings, began to deteriorate, degenerate and decline into confusion and decay, thus becoming Babylon, the great harlot of the world. Like Zerubbabel, those elect who are “flowing out of Babylon” shall be partners with God in finishing His work of rebuilding and restoring the House and Kingdom of the Lord!
These are They.... who are being Purified and Perfected
Who are these elect and chosen ones? “These are they .... which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” While “great tribulation” continues to judge, correct and purify the Lord’s chosen elect, we who are among that set-apart company are exchanging our putrid bodies of sin and death for those “white robes,” which represent our new bodies of deathless Life, which have been made white by the precious blood of the Lamb and the revelation of His pure Word of truth. The revelation of the word of Truth, which is Christ, is very vital and necessary in our lives. The elect are becoming pure, holy, undefiled and entirely righteous, for their Father is thoroughly cleansing them by the blood of the Lamb and the washing of the water of His pure Word of truth. Truth (Christ) means everything to the elect, for by Him they are being cleansed, purified, perfected, and prepared of the Lord to finish His great, redemptive work.
Christ is declared to be “the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.” The word “church,” as used here, is taken from the Greek word, “ekklesia” and really means the called-out-ones. It is not referring to the churches or to the church system as we understand it to be today, but the Spirit is speaking of those who are called out of the world and also out of the general realm of Christendom, known today as the “church.” To understand what Paul is really saying here, we should use the term, “called-out-ones” instead of the word, “church.” And when we understand the “ekklesia” to be the called-out-ones and not the church, we can readily see that this is happening today. Today, God has called out a people unto Himself, who shall be thoroughly and completely cleansed by the washing of the water of His pure Word. They have been called out of the world and also out of the church system. They shall be washed and cleansed by the operation of the holy Spirit within them until they are as pure and clean as the driven snow.
Of that “ekklesia,” or the called-out-ones, the word of the Lord has declared, “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church (the called-out-ones), and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church (the called-out-ones), not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it (the body of Christ, His chosen elect, or the called-out-ones) should be holy and without blemish” (Eph. 5:25-27).
God’s main interest and purpose has been and is to visit the nations “to take out of them a people for his name” (Acts 15:14). It has never been God’s purpose in the past to either bring the thing we call the “church” to perfection, or to save the whole world. God is not now nor has He ever in the past moved by His Spirit to separate the so-called “church” unto Himself or to cleanse it and make it holy and without blemish. The Lord is not doing much spiritual work within the establishment that is called the “church!” In due time, God will move by His Spirit to bring the whole realm of Christendom to experience His full salvation, just as He will with the whole world of mankind. But for now, Father’s only interest is set upon His chosen and called out elect. He must have His remnant saints fully cleansed, perfected and purified, and He is doing this by His precious blood and by the Truth, which He is! The error of man only defiles! But the Truth, which is Christ in the revelation of Himself, will thoroughly cleanse us and make us whole! Then He will, through them, bring the rest of Christendom to experience the full salvation of the Lord and fully save the whole world of fallen mankind as well!
It has never been God’s plan and purpose to save the world in the past. In fact, that is not His purpose for this present time. If God had wanted to save the world at any time during the past age of the church, or even at the present time, He could have done so in a moment of time and by the Word of His power. But that was not His purpose then, nor is it His purpose today! Our Father’s purpose, in the past as well as the present, is not to save the whole world, but to call out a people for His Name! Our Father must have a holy, separated remnant - a people whom He has taken out from among the nations and also out of the old church order, who will do only and always His perfect will on earth.
Then, when God has His holy remnant, called, chosen and purified by the blood of the Lamb and the washing of the water of His pure Word of Truth, He will move mightily by His Spirit to save the world. He will call the multitudes to come to Zion! And when Father issues the call to the nations to come to Zion, they will run to Him by the multitudes! Then, whole nations will come running to Zion (Micah 4:2)! Nothing will prevent them from coming to the Lord, for He will call them to come. And when the almighty, sovereign Lord of all calls, no one will be able to resist that call of the Spirit, which is as the awakening blast of a mighty trumpet of alarm sounding forth from the holy hill of Zion!
Our loving and merciful Father is surely and determinedly cleansing and purifying His elect ones. For some time many of us have known and have also experienced the strange, persistent and ongoing dealings of the Lord in our lives. During those difficult times, we sought the Lord, which is what our Father wanted us to do. Then, this prophetic word was made real to us: “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, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts. But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap: And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness” (Mal. 3:1-3).
The Lord, Whom we were diligently seeking, suddenly, swiftly and deliberately came into His temple, which we are, to cleanse us, purify us and bring us to perfection. He came suddenly into the temple of our spirits to lead us through the tests and trials of our appointed “great tribulation.” And when He came to us, we may have thought that He would come as our Comforter, or as our Healer, or as our Peacemaker. But instead He came into our temples as “a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap.” When He came to us as “the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in;” He came to “purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver.” Christ, Who is “the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in,” also appeared within us to confirm and seal the covenant of His word and His promises to us.
As we look back on those experiences and His appearing within us, we are blessed in knowing that all those tests and trials were ordained of our Father. Because He appeared to us and within us as a refiner’s fire and cleansed us as a fuller would with strong soap, we know we are better off. How wonderful to know that it was the Lord Who appeared within us in all those difficult experiences! His purpose is being fulfilled within us for His glory. And one day soon, we shall come forth “as gold and silver, that they (WE) may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness.” Then we will be fully prepared and properly adorned to lead the nations into the Kingdom of our Father!
It is our Father’s holy purpose to cleanse and purify us “with the washing of water by the word.” By His pure Word of Truth, which is Christ in the revelation of Himself, our Father is washing us and cleansing us, “that he might present it to himself a glorious church (the called-out-ones), not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it (the body of Christ, or the called-out-ones) should be holy and without blemish.” And we are getting there one step at a time! It is good for us to know just who we are in the Spirit! “These are they...” who shall also “offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness!” For the first time ever, the elect shall then display the real and true righteousness of the Lord!
By the washing of the water of His pure Word of Truth, the Lord is thoroughly cleansing us, that we might be perfect and complete in every area of our lives. We are also becoming all that He is. Every time we hear and receive our Father’s pure Word of Truth, by the Spirit and not by the carnal mind, that Truth is cleansing us and is progressively, step-by-step, bringing us into the resplendent image and likeness of the Lord of Glory. The Word of the Lord, which is Christ the Truth, is changing us and cleansing us, both within and without! And His pure Word of Truth is not benign, nor is it devoid of His mighty power and authority.
“For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power [making it active, operative, energizing, and effective]; it is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating to the dividing line of the breath of life (soul) and [the immortal] spirit, and of joints and marrow [of the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging the very thoughts and purposes of the heart. And not a creature exists that is concealed from His sight, but all things are open and exposed, naked and defenseless to the eyes of Him with Whom we have to do” (Heb. 4:12-13, AMP). What powerful, searching and penetrating eyes He has! Nothing within any creature whatsoever is concealed from Him! He can see deep within us to search and destroy all that is not of Him! And He is doing just that with each one of us!
It is not the words of man that are cleansing us, but the pure Word of the Lord, which is absolute Truth. When His pure Word is quickened to us and made alive within us, that anointed and living Word shall wash us, to remove all within us that is of the old sinful nature of fallen Adam. Every one of us are candidates for this cleansing process! There is no one living among us yet who is pure and perfect, without the old Adamic flesh and its wicked ways. No one among us has yet been transformed! We are all still in and of the flesh! Not until we are born again of the Spirit and changed into His glorious image and likeness, shall we be pure and perfect in His sight and fully saved! God is still working on us! Not until His cleansing work in us has ended will we be fully saved and prepared of our Father to fulfill His Word. The nations wait for us to grow up and become what He is! The groaning and travailing multitudes await our full salvation! When we grow to full stature in Christ, the prophetic Word of the Lord shall then be fulfilled! Having said all this, we all know that Father’s time schedule for us is up to date! We are not one whit behind in the plan and purpose of our Father! When the fullness of time has come, we will be ready! When the last trump sounds, God will not be late and neither will we!
It is impossible for us mortals to fully assess all that our Father is doing within us and with us. Only when we see with the eyes of the Spirit can we know the works and the ways of our God. He takes the little that we are and have and makes it into something beautiful and perfect, fit to take on the whole world of corruption, sin and shame. Only God can do something like that! And only those who have been changed into His glorious and ineffable image and likeness are able to work with God to fulfill the gigantic task that lies before us. If God can do the perceived impossible with us, just think what He can do with the rest of the world! There is nothing that can impede the increase and the progress of our Father and His almighty Kingdom of Love! He is well able to defeat every one of His enemies and ours as well, and put them all under His feet, which we are! And He will do it with us, in spite of what we were or where we came from!
How powerful and effective is the Word of our Father to keep us? The Psalmist tells us, “Thou has proved mine heart; thou hast visited me in the night; thou has tried me, and shalt find nothing; I am purposed that my mouth shall not transgress. Concerning the works of men, by the word of thy lips I have kept me from the paths of the destroyer” (Ps. 17:3-4). The Lord has proved us and visited us during the night, or at times when we were not aware of His presence. At night, whether we are asleep or awake, the Lord is there, searching us and trying us, to see what is within us. As it was with David, we believe He will also find that there is no fault within us, for we have purposed that our mouths will not transgress. And, by the Word of His lips, we are kept from the paths of the destroyer. His living Word of Truth is that inner power which is keeping us from transgressing! With David, we may also say, “As for God, His way is perfect! The word of the Lord is tested and tried; He is a shield to all those who take refuge and put their trust in Him” (Ps. 18:30, AMP). And, “For the word of the Lord is right; and all His work is done in faithfulness” (Ps. 33:4, AMP).
The Psalmist loved the Lord with all that was within him, so he asked the Lord: “And take not the word of truth utterly out of my mouth; for I have hoped in thy judgments. So shall I keep thy law continually for ever and ever” (Ps. 119:43-44). We love the Lord also and would make the same request the Psalmist made. Realizing that His judgments cleanse us and give us hope and promise, like the Psalmist, we would never want our Father to utterly take His word of Truth out of our mouths. By His Word, we are being cleansed, purified and made whole! The Word of our Father reminds us of His laws, His precepts, and the principles of His Kingdom, which will keep us on the path of righteousness. The Psalmist also said, “Remember [fervently] the word and promise to Your servant, in which You have caused me to hope. This is my comfort and consolation in my affliction: that Your word has revived me and given me life. [Rom. 15:4.]” (Ps. 119:49-50, AMP). Perhaps we now realize that our transgressions, or those inner “little foxes that spoil the vine,” are weighing us down and robbing us of that true joy. But His Word of Truth cleanses us, and also revives us and gives us Life.
The wise man has said, “Whoso despiseth the word shall be destroyed: but he that feareth the commandment shall be rewarded. The law of the wise is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death” (Pro. 13:13-14). What words of Divine wisdom and purpose! When we really understand the effectiveness and power of the Word of the Lord, we will truly respect His Word and His Truth, and will appreciate all He is doing in our lives by that anointed Word of power and authority. It is by His Word of Truth that we are being cleansed and kept!
The prophet Amos, prophesied of the time to come when there would be a famine in the land. “Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord God, when I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but [a famine] for hearing the words of the Lord. And [the people] shall wander from sea to sea and from the north even to the east; they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord [inquiring for and requiring it as one requires food], but shall not find it. In that day shall the fair virgins and young men faint for thirst. Those who swear by Ashimah or the sin of Samaria and say, By the life of your god [the golden calf], O Dan! and [swear], By the life of the way of [idolatrous] Beersheba, they shall fall and rise no more” (Amos 8:11-14, AMP).
There is most certainly a famine for the hearing of the Word of the Lord today! That famine of the precious Word of God, which cleanses us and keeps us on the right path, is taking place now! The Word of the Lord is not as strong and available as it was a few years ago, causing people to wander around, looking for that precious, cleansing Word. The result of this famine for the Word of the Lord is that some will turn to Eastern religions, to the false gods of new age teachings, to other forms of deception, or back to the church system. That is the way it is during this midnight hour of gross, spiritual darkness! But Christ is our Life and Light! By His Light within us, this night shall be turned to Day! And we are learning important spiritual lessons now, as we await the morning dawn. We shall overcome this spiritual darkness, and shall awake the dawn of the new morning by the transforming Light of the Christ within!
Much of the world’s confusion is a direct result of the false doctrines of the corrupt church system! Our Father called us out of the church system that He might free us of the false doctrines of the carnal mind and reveal His pure Truth to us. Cling to that Truth - cling to Christ, Who is the Truth! We are passing through a time when there is a famine for the hearing of the Word of the Lord. And this famine is causing many to wander, as if they are in a strange wilderness alone and without God’s guidance and direction. The cleansing, healing, guiding power of the Word of the Lord has diminished. It is a time when the elect are being tried and tested. This is also a time when the “tares” are gathering together to be harvested (Mt. 13:36-43). And only the called and chosen elect of the Lord will make it through this strange and dark, midnight hour of gross spiritual darkness. The Lord’s elect cannot and will not be deterred by the error, deception and gross darkness of these times!
Needed: Repentance and Sincere Prayer in the Spirit
This is a time when God’s people must repent and turn to the Lord with every fibre of their beings. Difficult times such as these require that a strong people make difficult sacrifices! This is also the time when true, Spirit-led prayer should be the “ministry” of every true believer! It was for such a time as this that the prophet Joel prophesied, saying, “Let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O LORD, and give not thine heritage to reproach, that the heathen should rule over them: wherefore should they say among the people, Where is their God? Then will the LORD be jealous for his land, and pity his people” (Joel 2:17-18).
True, anointed, Spirit-birthed prayer is essential at this time. But knowing God and His purposes as we do, we know that all things are in His capable hands and will remain there. We also know, by the Spirit, that there is only one prayer we can pray in any and all situations, whether in good times or bad. And that prayer is, “Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen” (Mt. 6:9-13).
Personally, I do not believe we need to pray before meals, nor do we need to pray at any other ordered times and seasons, as the manner and customs of most Christians are. But I do believe in praying without ceasing, as the Spirit leads! The Apostle Paul gave us these suggestions for good, Christ-like behavior: “See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men. Rejoice evermore. PRAY WITHOUT CEASING. IN EVERYTHING GIVE THANKS: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. Quench not the Spirit. Despise not prophesyings. Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. Abstain from all appearance of evil. And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it” (1 Thess. 5:15-24). Amen!
To pray without ceasing may seem to be an impossible task. But we can only pray without ceasing IN THE SPIRIT AND BY THE SPIRIT! This is a time when the works of the flesh must end, including prayer times or seasons of prayer, as ordered and set aside by carnal, religious leaders. To pray at a set time with no spiritual connection with the Lord is a useless, empty ceremony, devoid of the power and presence of the Lord. Jesus rebuked the scribes and Pharisees for making long prayers and for praying to be heard of men. Most Christians follow the example of the scribes and Pharisees by praying in public, or praying to be heard and seen of man. But when we pray without ceasing, we are giving expression to the Spirit within us; we are communing with our Father in secret. And our Father, Who hears us in secret, will reward us openly.
Just before He gave us this prayer to pray, which is called “the Lord’s prayer,” Jesus said this: “And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as THE HYPOCRITES are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, AS THE HEATHEN DO: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him” (Mt. 6:5-8). May the Lord, Who loves us with an everlasting Love, deliver us of the unholy and unspiritual practice of praying “as the heathen do!” We are a called and chosen people set apart unto the Lord and for the Lord! Therefore, we are different from most others, and must walk this Kingdom path being guided by higher spiritual standards!
For the elect’s sake these days will be shortened. False christs and false prophets are arising, attempting to deceive the very elect, IF IT WERE POSSIBLE. But it is not possible for the true elect to be deceived! When Father’s purpose for this time of testing is fulfilled, this night of gross, spiritual darkness will be over. “And then they will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great (kingly) power and glory (majesty and splendor). [Dan 7:13,14.] And then He will send out the angels and will gather together His elect (those He has picked out for Himself) from the four winds, from the farthest bounds of the earth to the farthest bounds of heaven” (Mk. 13:26-27, AMP).
Where else can we go, in these spiritually dark times of tribulation, and of tests and trials, but to the Lord! Cling to Him and to His pure Word of Truth, for He and His Word is our salvation! By the abiding presence of the Lord and His pure Word of Truth, which is within us, we are being kept from the error and deception of man that is so prevalent all around us during this midnight hour of gross, spiritual darkness. Soon the new morning of this great Day shall dawn in all the glory, wonder and power of the Lord our God! Then we will see the sign of the Son of man coming in spirit clouds of Kingly power and glory. And then He will send out His angels, or His anointed messengers, who will gather together His elect from the farthest bounds of the earth to the farthest bounds of the Heavens of His Spirit.
This is not yet the time for the elect to be gathering together! Rather, this midnight hour is the time when our Father has determined that the “tares” should be gathered together and harvested. The midnight hour is a time of judgment unto correction for the elect, and a time of harvest for the “tares” (Mt. 13:30). Also, in Israel’s history, the Spirit of the Lord went throughout Egypt to slay all the firstborn of that land at midnight. The reason He did that was “that ye may know how that the LORD doth put a difference between the Egyptians and Israel” (Ex. 11:4-7). Once again in this new Day, the Lord has “branded” His elect with His spiritual mark, putting a difference between “the Egyptians,” or the people of the world, including those in the church system, and His own, chosen and elect saints! The slaying of Egypt’s firstborn was also done as the last of the signs given to Pharaoh, warning him to let God’s people go!
Today, I hear the Voice of the Spirit, saying to all who have ears to hear, “Let my people go!” God’s Word is given so that His people, who seek to do His will, might hear and know what their Father is doing in the earth. Our Father is moving by His Spirit to set His people free, enabling them to do all His holy will, and to finish His great, Kingdom work of redemption, restoration and full salvation. By the Spirit, the Christ man shall manifest God’s mighty power, by which He shall rule the whole world, put all His enemies under His feet and restore all things!
Our Father is also giving us “a new sharp threshing instrument
having teeth,” which is different than our previous “threshing instrument!”
Is it not Kingdom power and authority, which He has given us, to reign on the
earth as kings and priests after the order of Melchisedec? Is that not our new,
sharp threshing instrument? That new “threshing instrument” gives
us the ability and the authority to reign with Christ from His Heavenly, Spiritual
throne. And are not the “teeth” of our new, sharp threshing instrument
the Word of the Lord and His pure and righteous Kingdom Law, which is to be
written on the tables of the hearts of all?
“These are they...” who are seated on His royal throne of all power and authority to reign with Christ! From that realm, the Spirit of God works while we REST! And when the Spirit works, there is no work left for us to do! Hear this Word from one who sat on His throne: “I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall REST in hope. For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore” (Ps. 16:8-11).
Paul and Emily Mueller
P O BOX 25055, Portland, OR 97298-0055