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Incense Prayer by Leo Fenton

the-altar-of-incense

 

Introduction To The Altar of Incense

The Kingdom Dimension Of Prayer.

The Priesthood Ministry!

Part of the Next Restoration

 

January 10, 2017

Jesus said” I am the way, the truth and the life, and no one can come to the Father except through Me”.

We can interpret that as another cliche or we can see the reality of what He said. Was Jesus saying there are three unfolding revelations of him that lead us to the Father? Is Jesus, the Way, the same understanding as Jesus the Truth. Is Jesus, the Truth, the same understanding as Jesus, the Life? Is Jesus the LIFE the same revelation of Jesus, our Great High Priest?

Those who have studied the scriptures know there are various and diverse revelations of Jesus Christ that are higher and different than the revelation of His birth in Israel.

He may first be seen as the baby king and later as The Savior. Or as the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world. He may be seen as the Son of Man and also as the Son of God, who is the first of many sons of God that He will bring to Glory. Some understand Him as the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit or as the Healer. He may later be seen as The Lord of highest authority who must be obeyed. He may be seen as the Lord of all lords and The King of all kings. Or the ONE To whom every knee must bow. He may be seen as the captain of the hosts of the armies of God or as the Coming King! Or, as the revelation of Christ Jesus who is our functioning Great High Priest who sits at the Right Hand of God, the Almighty! Each of these represents an unfolding revelation of Jesus Christ. Rarely, would anyone receive a complete revelation of Jesus at his conversion experience. The Revelation for this study is this;

He is the Only way to the Father.

Many of these otherwise confusing statements are brought to light in the Tabernacle of Moses. In the tabernacle of Moses, the three revelations of Christ can be seen within the three veils that separate the worshiper from the manifested presence of God, who dwells over the Ark of the Covenant and ABOVE the Mercy Seat and BETWEEN the Two Cherubim. For example; according to the “gospel of salvation” all three veils are removed and as soon as our sins are forgiven we are seated with Jesus, on His Throne! However, what is revealed in scripture is not even close to that.

The general presence of God was in the entire tabernacle but there was the specific place of God’s presence in the Most Holy Place. There was no open access to the Most Holy Place, behind the third veil, during the Old Covenant period. Only the consecrated high priest [who was Aaron or the son of Aaron and of Aaron’s priestly order] had access to the Holy Place, behind the second veil and NO ONE had access to the Most Holy Place and that was limited to the High priest!

That access was only once a year on the Day of Atonement.

Any Israelite, who was not circumcised or have a sacrifice for his sins, had no access even to the Outer Court, behind the first veil. Three separate revelations of God are seen in the three separate divisions of the tabernacle. These three are identified by their separate sources of light by which they were illuminated. Each of the three partitions, that form the three divisions, required different light sources! Natural light from the sun, moon and stars illuminated the Outer Court. The gold lampstand, with it’s pure oil and it’s seven mounted lamps of gold, illuminated the Holy Place. The manifested presence of God, the glory of God, illuminated the Most Holy Place. These three sections also speak of these three revelation of Christ Jesus. The First, as our all inclusive Savior! The second as our great active and functioning High Priest, building His Church! The Third as our King Eternal, currently building a Kingdom of Priests! The Most Holy Place also is the revelation of the Father and the Location of His Manifested Presence. In other words the Tabernacle exposes multiple Revelations of many Eternal Things!

Light speaks to us of revelation but Light and Life are linked together in John 1. Three levels of light indicate three levels of unfolding revelation of God, and possibly three levels of Eternal Life. The curtains or veils speak two things. First, stay out. Second, with proper preparation, you may enter. In the tabernacle of Moses, the third veil said, there is NO Access under the Old Covenant!

HEB 9:8 The Holy Spirit {is} signifying this, that the way into the holiest

(Most Holy Place) has not yet been disclosed, while the first tabernacle is still standing.

Christ Jesus, by His sacrifice on Calvary, opened up our access to the Most Holy Place. Why? That SACRIFICE and His blood introduced us to a completely New Covenant that was NOTHING like or subject to the Old Covenant! Ignorance of the New Covenant and the Promises of God are the source of the current ignorance and the powerlessness in the visible church!

Of course, in this study, we are not speaking of access to the physical Tabernacle, the one on earth, which no longer exists, but the access to Most Holy Place in the Tabernacle of God in the Eternal Heaven. In other words, to the New Jerusalem.

The first veil then speaks to us of Jesus the Way. The second veil speaks to us of Jesus the Truth. The third veil speaks to us of Jesus the Life. Once we have the revelation that Jesus is the only way— and there is and never will be any other Way to the Father— it leads us to a deeper acceptance and a more complete repentance. Since the Third Veil was only TORN, from top to bottom, when Jesus gave up His life, this torn veil represents HIS LIFE!

Matthew 27:50 And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit. 51 And behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom, and the earth shook; and the rocks were split, 52 and the tombs were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised—.

But, brother, what has that to do with us since we are “already saved.” We need to see that “salvation” is not one experience but a process including several foundational experiences, However, forgiveness of sins is the first in our salvation experiences!

Then, by faith, we may need to “return” to the altar of Calvary and find a much deeper repentance because of our primary ignorance. For example; Our High Priest insisted upon a continuous and deeper repentance in Revelation 2 and 3!

We are not suggesting that we did not have our sins forgiven by the blood of Jesus when we first came to our Savior. However, each succeeding step in our foundational experiences has added to our understanding and revelation Christ Jesus, the Way! The succeeding Foundations mean ; the removal of old garments, then into the death in the Laver (baptism), to the new Garments of Resurrection, to the Anointing by the Holy Spirit, to the giving of ourselves in a total Consecration to God and to His Purpose and up to the Second Veil . Each “Genuine Experience” contributes to an unfolding revelation of ” Jesus The Way”. There are seven such steps in the Outer Court. It is this last Outer Court revelation of Jesus Christ, the Way, that leads us to becoming a Full Consecration Offering.

My point is this; In the first (earthly) Tabernacle, {the Type and Shadow) the consecration offering was the last thing the priests did before entering into the Holy Place to BEGIN their ministry. Their first ministry was to God, to become His Minister in behalf of and toward the people of Israel!

All that is just the introduction to this study in which we are essentially interested in the Incense and the Altar of Incense! We will not just focus upon the “items” but more upon the “ministry.” Why? That is because the Holly Place Life and Priesthood Ministry will be the Next Restoration. This “ministry” will primarily be Toward God! In other words, a complete renovation of ministry methodology!

Exo_29:44 “And I will consecrate the tent of meeting and the altar; I will also consecrate Aaron and his sons to minister as priests to Me.

Exo_30:30 “And you shall anoint Aaron and his sons, and consecrate them, that they may minister as priests to Me.

Exo_40:15 and you shall anoint them even as you have anointed their father, that they may minister as priests to Me; and their anointing shall qualify them for a perpetual priesthood throughout their generations.”

That they may minister as priests to Me will be our emphasis in this study of the Incense and the Incense Altar. Why? Incense Prayer is primarily FOR GOD and to further His Purpose.

The Lampstand, the Lamps (the Seven Spirits of God) and the Table of Showbread and the Showbread ministry are covered in other studies of the Tabernacle of Moses which is a COPY of the Tabernacle of God, which is the Ultimate Reality!

However the foundations for all the Holy Place ministries, which we are guessing must be restored, must begin with the second veil which we have identified as the Veil of TRUTH. This Begins with our revelation of Jesus Christ who IS TRUTH. It is not just that Jesus preached to us a message that was “true,” He, Himself, is ultimate and absolute TRUTH. In the world and too often in the church, truth is relative.

Current Truth is somewhat like doctrines that vary from church to church. In some churches baptism is essential while in others baptism is considered as a Jewish ritual (a ritual washing) that provides nothing in our experience as Christians. In some churches the Loed’s Table or the communion service is practiced each Sunday while in others, the communion is considered as a Jewish ritual of Passover that was done away with at Calvary. That kind of truth is popular but is not stable or Absolute so it is relative. The Lord Jesus Christ is God’s absolute TRUTH.

People have a lot of foolish doctrines that only get straightened out when they get the Revelation of God’s absolute TRUTH.In my opinion, that only happens when we approach the Second Veil. For example;

Isaiah prophesied with power for five chapters. Then he saw the Lord. When he saw the Lord he was devastated and was finished as a prophet of God because he saw the reality of himself and the uncleanness of his own lips. With that revelation of ultimate truth, Isaiah saw his own need for cleansing. In other words; Ultimate TRUTH revealed the lie that was in Isaiah and in his ministry. Of course this revelation of God brought Isaiah to the place where God could correct the problem and to continue to use him as God’s prophet. We could say that Isaiah 9, and his future ministry as a prophet of God, was the result of the Isaiah 6. With that “uncleanness” could he have continued his ministry as a prophet? NO! However, many of us still try today. This is NOT a matter of sin but of uncleanness and requires a different dimension of repentance.

This example reveals the nature of TRUTH in our personal experience. It not only reveals the truth about Jesus but it reveals the truth about ourselves. A normal revelation of the truth about Jesus puffs us up and makes us proud. We want to write books about our experience and get on the talk show circuit. However the true revelation of Jesus brings to us the true revelation of ourselves. Another realm of repentance, that doesn’t puff us up, but humiliates.

That “second Veil” Truth devastates and humiliates us but it brings a new balance into our lives for a Holy Place Priesthood function. Anyone who sees himself in the light of Jesus Christ can never be the same again. Anyone who has seen Jesus Christ and has not seen his own uncleanness and foulness, hasn’t see the Exalted and Glorified Christ of scripture. When John the Revelator saw Jesus in Revelation 1, he fell like a dead man. That is normal! However, this cannot be taught as another doctrine or can it be experienced as a new study. This is a Holy Place experience that BEGINS at the Second Veil, which has not been TORN.

REV 1:17 And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as a dead man. And He laid His right hand upon me, saying, “Do not be afraid; I am the first and the last,

From this we can see the second veil can be a very dramatic and devastating experience. Some people have the mistaken idea they can just stroll through the second veil and on through the third veil because the third veil is torn from top to bottom and Jesus has made the way for us. Remember, the “torn” third veil is still part of the New Covenant Experience!

Whatever the condition of the third veil, the veil of truth still confronts us with Ultimate TRUTH. First, the truth about Jesus, and then, the truth about ourselves, which is the result of the TRUTH about Christ Jesus. The devastating part for us is when we see ourselves in the light of Jesus Christ, the Ultimate and Eternal Truth.

The Holy Place life and ministry, and each successive experience, produces a progressing revelation of Jesus Christ. Whenever we see Him, in His different revelations in the Book of Revelation, we should also see ourselves in that progressing Light. In the Holy Place, there is the Pure Gold Lampstand, The Gold Lamps, the Golden Oil, AND the Special Illumination from the Seven Spirits of God. Then the Wood Table covered with Gold on all sides! This “TABLE” held the Special Showbread which the Priests ate. Then the Gold Altar for the burning of Incense. This is a WOOD TABLE that is covered on all sides with Pure Gold! However, this Essential Table was for the specific purpose of burning this detailed and specific Incense. Burning any other incense on this altar invited disaster.

Not only do each of these items of furniture represent a Holy Place Life and Ministry function but each of these items represents a clear revelation of Jesus Christ, our High Priest, taken from among men to mediate the New Covenant! It is in this Holy Place that ( I am guessing) we will understand that HE IS absolute TRUTH.

Most everyone, who has eyes to see, has seen the extreme superficiality that is in the church today. So much that is passed off as Christianity is just cosmetic. An outward form but inwardly shallow, full of spots and wrinkles. When we compare the visible church today with the Church He is in the process of Building – The Lampstand Church of Pure Gold, holding and manifesting the Seven Spirits of God, illuminating a Priesthood ministry, we should see the visible church today, is frivolous, lukewarm, casual, impractical and insignificant. In so many ways, the visible church today is just, plainly speaking, irrelevant. This is also the world’s criticism and the evaluation in much of the media. It is just not seen as force to be reckoned with.

The contrast is this; Jesus said he would build His church and it would be a force to be reckoned with. What then has gone wrong?

If we could see the preparation of the church {for a Holy Place Ministry} from the picture, the type and the shadow from the Tabernacle of Moses and the Preparation of the Priests, it will give us some insight of what God intended for the church, which is His body. This Church He is Building is pictured as the PURE GOLD LAMPSTAND. Our Great High Priest is pictured as personally rebuking, correcting, threatening and teaching the Seven Churches of Asia in Revelation 2 and 3. Why? He is revealing to them the advancement to the NEXT dimension of Pillars, Throne and Authority over the nations.

REV 1:20 “As for the mystery of the seven stars which you saw in My right hand, and the seven golden lampstands: the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands are the seven churches. One church in each geographical location is represented by one lampstand. REV 2:1 “To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: The One who holds the seven stars in His right hand, the One who walks among the seven golden lampstands, says this:

Jesus is the one who is walking among the Seven Golden Lampstand Churches who knows what is happening in thoes churches and every Lampstand church in every age!

REV 2:5 ‘Remember therefore from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first; or else I am coming to you, and will remove your lampstand out of its place– unless you repent.

From this it is clear that if Jesus removed the lampstand from the church at Ephesus, the Holy Place Life and Ministry would go into darkness.

Since the “darkness” is obvious in the visible church, is it possible that is what has happened, over the church age, in the visible church?

But, brother, why are you concerned since we are “already Saved?”

It is clear that the church at Ephesus was “already saved” , as was the other six churches, but now, in the Holy Place dimension, {following preparation} this is NOT about forgiveness of sins but about God’s Eternal Purpose!

Our continuing thesis is this; God has called ALL of us to be a Kingdom of Priests. It was the “priests duty” to keep the lampstand full of oil and the wicks trimmed.

Praying that God would keep the lamps full of Oil and burning brightly, to illuminate the Holy Place, was, is, and will be, a BIG WASTE OF TIME? Why? That duty is given to the priests! This ignorance is demonstrated in most “prayer meetings.”

Here is a Scriptural example:

Eli and his sons let the lampstand go out, the Holy Place went into darkness. The

Holy Place ministry stopped. No Showbread could be set out and no Incense could be offered.

It was just a short time until the Philistines captured the Ark of the Covenant. The Glory of God departed from the Tabernacle.

If the Lampstand is the church and the Lampstand is removed, the church, in the Holy Place dimension of the Seven Spirits of God, is in darkness and can no longer be a church. However, the visible church, like Eli and his sons, may not recognize that NOTHING was happening in the Tent of Meeting. Why? The Lampstand had gone out and the Ark of the Covenant was GONE from the Tabernacle! No Incense was burning! This was the situation for about 60 years but the priests were still performing their duties at the bronze altar of sacrifice and continuing the other Outer Court rituals.

Today, it seems normal to continue to hold “church services” Sunday after Sunday even if “the Lampstand is gone out and the Ark of the Covenant ” is missing!

It should be obvious that if the “ARK” is gone, the whole religious ritual will be superficial, shallow and mostly cosmetic and just more theater. Today, it seems, most of the visible church has no idea that anything is wrong. Why? The ministries are not aware so no one is concerned.

The main point in what I want to share about the Lampstand Church is it is not in the Outer Court. There is no Lampstand in the Outer Court. The Fullness of the Seven Spirits of God ONLY function and provide illumination in the Holy Place. Looking for the Seven Spirits of God in the Outer Court is a big waste of time. Why? There is NO fullness there! That is the place of the Down-payment of the Spirit dimension.

God has only designed one place for the Lampstand Church to function and that is Beyond the Second Veil and in the Holy Place. If there is such a thing as a counterfeit church, it would have to be in the Outer Court. It is just not possible for a superficial church to be in the Holy Place where Our High Priest is building His Church. There is no such thing as a superficial Lampstand Church made out of plastic, wood, bricks or be cast in plaster or even made of brass. What God recognizes is a PURE GOLD Lampstand Church, hammered out of one piece of gold.

Our conclusion from this type is this: It cannot be Jesus Christ who has built this aberration, casual and superficial visible church, therefore, what we see must be the work of uninformed men.

The Lampstand Church will have passed through all the unfolding revelations and experiences of “Jesus the Way” and will have been confronted with Jesus Christ the Lord, the Ultimate Truth and our King / High Priest. Since the Lampstand is made of pure gold, it is apparent the church must have experienced the process of refining the gold ore, to remove everything from the dirt realm! This requires the work of fire and requires that all the dross be removed. Why? What is required for His Church is PURE GOLD!

This process BEGINS at the Consecration Offering. Why?

That is where all hypocrisy, carnality, casualness, superficiality and religious trappings are removed. What was only cosmetic for theater is transformed into real Christianity and made transparent by the fire consuming the Sacrifice, the Whole Burnt Offering! The church that Jesus builds, which is a power to be reckoned with, will be A PURE GOLD LAMPSTAND CHURCH. We should not confuse what we see in the visible realm with what Jesus is building in the Holy Place.

The “ministry” in the Holy Place is not revealed by one item of furniture or by two but is revealed by a combination AND the function of all three. Regularly refueling the Lampstand Church, being Illuminated by the Seven Spirits of God, setting out and maintaining the Table of Showbread and eating regularly from the Showbread, continuously maintaining the fire and the Incense upon the Altar of Incense is the RESPONSIBILITY of the Active and Corporate Priesthood Ministry.

This is only presented as an INTRODUCTION to the Ministry of Prayer and the burning of INCENSE. Hopefully, The next study will be clearer about the Incense, the Fire and the Incense Altar.

It should be clear that I am NOT presenting this as “from my experience” but just from the TYPE revealed within the Tabernacle of Moses!

I have never been able to burn the real incense! What is my excuse? This is reserved for Priests after the Order of Melchizedek! What I am writing is ONLY doctrine!

I believe this “doctrine” of burning incense is true and real but beyond my present experience! What is the purpose of this document then?

This is part of the NEXT restoration and certainly must be the Experience of the Lampstand Church that He is Building

 

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Psalm 46 “God is Our Refuge” Inspirational Scripture Art Print

 Beautiful art print and motivational Bible Verse reading! Never forget that He alone is our refuge!

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Your Heart is Hard

Hope you enjoy this original song that my husband and I wrote about 25 years ago. It was based on a real encounter with someone he had know many years earlier. The song tells the story!

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The Rapture Craze

Roberts_Siege_and_Destruction_of_Jerusalem

I had an interesting exchange with a youtuber recently who is busy defending rapture date setting, saying that there’s nothing wrong with it and he knew of no one who had fallen away from the faith because of incorrect rapture dates. I reminded him of William Miller’s “Great disappointment” but he only criticized Miller’s followers, saying there must have been something wrong with them. Considering that Jesus himself actually said no man knows the day or the hour, including himself, I find this interest in rapture date setting a colossal wasteful undertaking.

This led me to seriously question what is going on with all the rapture mania videos on youtube. Everyone and their brother has a video on there claiming that they know the date or the year it is going to happen. It seems to have really taken off with the false predictions made around the “blood moons” last year. Some nationally known “prophecy” teachers came out declaring that the rapture was going to take place because of the three blood moons. Guess they skipped over the verse before that which states the sun would fall out of the sky first. Nothing like taking a verse out of context, both historically and eschatologically. I suppose that Peter the apostle was wrong when he declared that chapter in Joel fulfilled on the day of Pentecost.

Recently there has been a rapture craze surrounding the astronomical alignment back in October of this year that had “prophecy” teachers stating was a fulfillment of Revelation 12. Huh?? Seriously? Now every Dick, Harry and Sally on youtube is talking about the rapture happening this Christmas. Some said it would happen on the 7th day of Hanukkah this year, 120 days after the alignment of the woman in the sky. Well, that date came and went and we’re still here. Then there are others declaring that it will happen by year’s end 2017. Many have had dreams, others visions, others God spoke to them telling them to get ready because the rapture is coming. I pondered this peculiar phenomenon with puzzlement, where so many people are having dreams and visions of something and they are all claiming different dates. That the rapture it is a theory that was invented by John Nelson Darby in the 1830’s, and therefore not a scriptural event, makes this even more bizarre. I finally came up with a name for it and started calling it “Mass Religious Delusional Hysteria”.

But even if the rapture were a real event, I still don’t get the fascination with it. Jesus taught us how to live, not how to get out of here. Anyone who is a student of history would know that the first century believers escaped the siege of Jerusalem and fled to Pella, fulfilling this verse in Matthew 24. This is the only “escape” talk that Jesus gave his followers.

15 So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ (The corresponding verse in Luke 21 says “when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies) spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand—16 then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 17 Let no one on the housetop go down to take anything out of the house. 18 Let no one in the field go back to get their cloak. 19 How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! 20 Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath. 21 For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again.

We can easily see from the above verse that Jesus was specifically talking about Israel. “Let those in Judea” is about those living there. And where else in the world was the sabbath celebrated when everything closed down and you couldn’t ride your mule? This verse is not talking about a world wide event some time thousands of years in the the future. Jesus was giving a warning to people who were standing right in front of him, some of whom would live through this event in their lifetime. The siege against Jerusalem in 70 ad is the fulfillment of this prophecy and also was a fulfillment of the curses in Deut. 28 where people were eating their own babies to stay alive. (For the historical account look up Flavius Josephus and The History of the Destruction of Jerusalem)

What really gets me is that when you question these rapture date setters or their theory, they attack you with venomous anger. One recently told me that I was a tare and would burn in the fire. Seriously? Because we have a differing eschatology?? You don’t even know me. Guess no one told him that eschatological beliefs were not essentials of salvation. In my world we can agree to disagree. I just want to challenge people to look beyond Dispensationalism and read the bible in its proper context.

So, in light of that I will answer a questions here that I refused to deal with in defending my position in this recent exchange.

I have come to understand that the Bible is very narrowly focused. It is only about man, his fall, God’s people and his redemption through Messiah. It is not a book about the modern world. It is very narrowly focused and purposed. It was written thousands of years ago to people living at that time. We can not take Paul’s letters, for example, and impose them on our society. When Jesus spoke judgment he was focusing on the religious leaders of Israel in Matthew 23, not all of the future world. Even the book of Revelation is about events “near” and “at hand” and “soon to happen”, and calls Jerusalem “Sodom and Egypt where the Lord was crucified” (Rev 11:8) It is Israel centric and about events that would take place soon, to the people living in the first century. To push those prophecies into the future is to distort and pervert the text.

In that context let’s look at Matthew 24 and Luke 21. The question posed to me was why would the disciples ask Jesus when he was going to return while he was standing right in front of them? This was in relation to a discussion on a 1st century vs a future fulfillment. At first glance it appears that these two verses contradict each other, but upon examination they actually complete each other.

Matthew 24: 3 As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?”

Firstly, I would like to state that the KJV translators translated the word meaning “age” as “world”. Well, for the Jews it certainly was the end of their world when the Temple was destroyed. Reading the historical accounts of the siege and you can see why this would be called the GREAT tribulation. So sorry to disappoint the dispensationalist, but it will not be the end of our cosmic world in a future tribulation. The end of the “age” was the end of the Old Covenant age under the law of Moses and the ushering in of the eternal kingdom when that event happened in 70 ad. Both “worlds” existed side by side for 40 years, while the first fruits church underwent extreme persecution by both the Jewish leaders and Rome. The writer of the book of Hebrews when comparing the law to the “better things to come” stated “What is Old and perrishing will SOON pass away”. The bible is in complete harmony with the fact that there was an event coming SOON, not in the far distant future, that would change the world.

When you compare Matthew 24:3 with the corresponding verse in Luke 21:6 we get the full understanding of this statement:

Some of his disciples were remarking about how the temple was adorned with beautiful stones and with gifts dedicated to God. But Jesus said, “As for what you see here, the time will come when not one stone will be left on another; every one of them will be thrown down.”

Teacher,” they asked, “when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are about to take place?”

The sign of Jesus’ coming AND the end of the AGE (the restoration of the Kingdom) were BOTH TIED TO THE DESTRUCTION OF THE TEMPLE! Not one stone would be left upon another. The sign of Jesus’ coming and the sign when all these things would take place was the destruction of the Temple. This is not talking about the modern state of Israel and a rebuilt temple there. It already happened, and was already fulfilled exactly as Jesus said it would be. Jesus came on the clouds in judgment on the religious leaders of his day who crucified their own Messiah and persecuted his followers by making a pact with Rome to kill all the Christians. The whore of Babylon, the woman who rides the beast was Israel and the Beast was the Roman system.

We should always strive to let scripture interpret itself! Reading the bible in its historical contex fulfills 2 Tim 2:15 Study to show yourself approved unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

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Plug for BeFrugal

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I just wanted to make a plug for Befrugal.   I just got a $40 deposit from them because I go through their site when I shop online. If you sign up you can get a $10 referal bonus. Not hard and the more you shop online the more you can make in affiliate commissions. You also can get a % of anyone who signs up under you.   There is a link to their website in the side bar here also.  

Check it out here: https://www.befrugal.com/referral/?ref=ZFOYDZD

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The Responsibility of Hearing the Word of the Lord 

hear-word-of-god-and-obey-it
by T. Austin-Sparks

“I will destine you to the sword, and ye shall all bow down to the slaughter; because when I called, ye did not answer; when I spake, ye did not hear; but ye did that which was evil in mine eyes, and chose that wherein I delighted not.” Isaiah 65:12.

“Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things that were heard, lest haply we drift away from them.” Hebrews 2:1.

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock: if any man hear my voice and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me… He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith to the churches… He who testifieth these things saith, Yea: I come quickly. Amen: come, Lord Jesus.” Rev. 3:20,22; 22:20.

The Lord is constantly coming to His people. He comes to them every time that there is a living Word from Him. This familiar passage in Revelation 3 is impressive when you note that the knock, the voice, the ear and “the Spirit saith” are all one. “I knock”; and if you listen, it is not a tapping but a Voice, a Voice that could only be heard by the inner ear because it is the Voice of the Spirit and what the Spirit says is all one language. “My knock is My voice and My voice is what the Spirit says”, and that requires an inner ear giving heed to what the Spirit says, so that every time a living Word comes, the Lord has come, and coming in His Word by His Spirit, He comes expecting a response. 

There is a practical issue bound with every drawing near of the Lord in His Word and it is only as that issue is taken up definitely that the real meaning of the Lord’s drawing near is entered into and secured. The Lord may be there in His Word, the Spirit may be there speaking by that Word, the Word of the Lord bringing the Lord near may visit us, may be with us; and all that may be wonderfully true, as true as ever it was in those days of which it is written “The word of the Lord came by the mouth of” this one and that one, as true as ever it was true as a prophet said “Thus saith the Lord”. It may be just as true as that today, and yet at the same time result in nothing; that is, so far as the Lord’s purpose and intention is concerned. That is always the peril which lies alongside of a Word of the Lord coming, that it may, after all, result in nothing so far as that which the Lord intended is concerned.

“Herein is My Father glorified that ye bear much fruit…” not that ye know much truth, that ye hear many expositions of the Word, that the Word of the Lord indeed has come to you, but “Herein… much fruit”. And that can only be as we recognise the issue bound up with the Word and definitely lay hold of it. The response which the Lord expects when He comes in His Word is the response of Life, not merely of assent, agreement or pleasure. We have from Him the parable of the sower, a fourfold response from the Lord being present with His Word, for He is the sower, and the seed is the Word. The Lord is present with His Word, and He is sowing in expectation, and His expectation is disappointed very largely, whenever there is any kind of response to Him other than the response of real fruit, and that is taking hold of the issue into the heart. That is the very core of the parable, it is taking it into the heart; I think I can say: taking it to heart. There may be some kind of reaction that is not the response the Lord is seeking. He wants a heart response, not in emotion, but in fruit: that which becomes the embodiment of the Life that is in the Word which He brings so that the Word, having the Life, being planted in our hearts, means that that Word expresses itself in a living way in us. Such is the response which the Lord is seeking every time He comes to us in His Word. 

The apostle said to Timothy, “Give thyself wholly unto them that thy progress may be manifest to all”; “the things thou hast heard and received of me, give thyself wholly unto them”. As you give yourself wholly to them, the fruit, the progress, shall be seen of all. That is the only way to spiritual progress and it is the only response which satisfies the Lord. That is the response which He is seeking. Therefore it means utterness as well as immediacy.

Another peril is always present when the Lord comes with His Word. It is somehow indefinitely in the mind to postpone the issue. If it is not a deliberate postponement – for very few perhaps do that – it is a postponement all the same, for every failure to take hold and follow up is a postponement.

I do feel that there is much room with the Lord’s people as a whole for immediate transaction on the basis of every word which comes to us which we have any reason to believe is the Lord’s. This is the way of fruitfulness, this is the way of progress, this is the way of enlargement. I am sure you are concerned very much about the matter of spiritual growth, advancement, progress. I am sure you, in your own life with the Lord, often ask Him for spiritual increase in you, progress, that you might go on, that you might come to maturity. I am sure there is much in your prayer in that direction. Now, may I suggest to you a way in which you may co-operate with the Lord in answering such prayer? It is that you make a practice, whenever the Word of the Lord has come, of going immediately and dealing with the Lord on that matter, with the practical issue bound up with that Word. If you wait until tomorrow you will get into that vicious course that there will be another message presented and the last one has simply gone past, and so you go on. 

Each message is intended to have an issue, but it becomes an accumulation of messages, of words, with the weeks and months and years, and the great responsibility being piled up inasmuch as we are going to be judged by the Word. “The word that I have spoken unto you, it shall judge you” (John 12:48). The piling up of a great responsibility, because for some reason or other – not deliberately, not intentionally – we never square immediately to the practical issue bound up with the Word. If you will at once give yourself wholly for an application to the Word as well as of the Word, your progress will be seen of all. Here is a man or a woman who deals with God at once upon any issue raised by His Word. God takes that one on wonderfully; it is honest thoroughgoing dealing with the Lord immediately. The Lord is a Lord who requires prompt response. If you like to go through the Word, you will see what is bound up with a prompt response to the Lord. The blessing of the Lord is there. You will see the trouble that is bound up with the postponement, the increased difficulty, and you will see the loss that eventually comes when the thing is passed: “Because I called and ye did not answer”. “Behold… I knock, if any man will hear My voice” – what the Spirit says. That is speaking to the Church, as you know, not to the unsaved; it may be true there, but this word was a word to the Church.

It is only my purpose to help towards the end which I am always trying to keep in view for myself and for you: how can we come to that maturity, to that growth, to that enlargement? The Lord puts His finger upon this point and just hedges it about and says, “Now I want immediate and definite response in action, a transaction with Me on the issue that is raised by this word”. If we would do that every time instead of letting it go, and would beware of all those things which are ever waiting to dissipate God’s Word when He has drawn near in His Word, we should grow. You need not move out of your seat before someone will talk to you about something of tomorrow or the past, something which has nothing whatever to do with what the Lord has just been saying. You have only to get to the door and find yourself in general conversation. That kind of fellowship may be good and I am not in any way against the real fellowship of the Lord’s people, for it is a great help to be able to meet and talk; but beware because no sooner is the Word spoken than it is snatched away and for all practical purposes it might be as though it had never been spoken. That could never be if we immediately got down before the Lord and said, “Now Lord, there is a practical issue bound up with this and that issue has got to be possessed!” That is the way of growth. Bear the Word. As I say, it is only to help towards the end which we have in view. 

There is a great value in immediacy, and that response of course will call for utterness for the Lord. Such a response will test our utterness. If anybody really does have the Word of the Lord, seriously and immediately we must get before the Lord about it, meaning business; not just attending meetings and listening to addresses, but out for the Lord, bringing up this question: “What is it that the Lord has said? How does that apply to me? What is the Lord after in me concerning that? I may see it or I may not, but that is not the point. The point is, Lord is there something there that I do not see? Is there something You are trying to say to me and I am not yet alive to it?” How often, sometimes afterwards, we have seen that the Lord said something at a certain time and really it touched upon something in our lives, but at the time we did not see it. Now we see how that was fitted for our case. If we had gone to the Lord, might we not have seen it? That is utterness for the Lord in our response to His Word. There must be a taking hold and a keeping hold until the thing is settled, until it is established, because it is possible even to have exercise over a Word, to follow the point of the Word, to feel the weight of it and feel it getting into us and touching us and then for it to fade. We felt it and we always look back and say, “Yes that was a word that came to us; we felt something in that word; it moved us!” But we have to say that it fell short of the actual issue. What we have to do is to take hold and to keep hold. Has the Lord said something to us? Are we holding on to that until the matter is secured and established and the Lord has got that in us?

Note that word in Hebrews 2: “Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we heard, lest haply we drift away from them.” I have often pointed out that that word has behind it the picture of a man in the boat taking up his moorings. There is a current running and he comes up on his moorings, reaches out with his boat hook, takes his moorings on his boat hook, but he does it carelessly; he does it without all his attention bent upon it. The tide is running fast, the current is strong, and he has not given the more earnest heed and before he knows what has happened, he has slipped his moorings inadvertently and is drifting away. He had them, he came into touch with them, they were on his hook, and he lost them. It is so often like that. The Word of the Lord comes; we make contact, we even would say we have got it, but where is it after a bit? After a while, what about it? “Therefore… give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest haply we drift away from them.” That is the kind of response that the Lord is seeking all the time.

Now, it would never be right to leave things there without another word. Such a response to the Lord which He is seeking will always be costly. The Lord will see to that. The things of the Lord are not had cheaply; God’s purpose is a costly purpose and any fresh movement in relation thereto will be costly. You know that Hebrews 13:13 is the summary of the practical issues of going on. The exhortation throughout the letter is “Go on”. The summary is this: “Let us therefore go to Him without the camp, bearing His reproach.” That is what we are going to get for going on. Down here that is just what you are going to get if you go on. It all looks so glorious to go on, all that we are going on to is wonderful. We can romance about the eternal purpose and reigning and having dominion. Yes, but the present side of that is outside the camp bearing His reproach. There is a cost attached to going on with the Lord. There will be a cost bound up with every step. It will make demands; it will only be men of faith who will go on. That is what drives it in. It is that which makes it ours and makes it a part of us.

The Lord comes looking for response; the Word demands it and everything hangs upon it. There is nothing so established that it cannot be set aside by God if it ceases to respond to His purpose. “I… will remove thy lampstand out of its place, except…” (Rev. 2:5). God planted those churches in Asia, those lampstands; He blessed them, He used them; they were vessels of testimony; and then there came the crisis in which God said, “That which I have planted, that which I have blessed, that which was the work of My Spirit, and had My Spirit in it, I will move it out of its place”. There is a sense in which we are always on trial for our life and the nature of the trial is this: immediate response to every visitation of the Lord in His Word. “If any man will hear…”.

Edited and supplied by the Golden Candlestick Trust.

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120 Trumpeters

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by Joanne Panettieri              Photo credit 1 

The Glory Of The Lord Falls

The apostle Paul tells us that what happened to Israel in the past happened as examples for us. 1 Cor 10: 11Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition,”  and we can say with certainty that there are repetitive patterns in Scripture. One such pattern that I would like to explore here, is when the Glory of the Lord filled the temple. This story is given to us in 2 Chronicles chapter 5.

1 “Thus all the work that Solomon made for the house of the LORD was finished…. 2 Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel, and all the heads of the tribes, the chief of the fathers of the children of Israel, unto Jerusalem, to bring up the ark of the covenant of the LORD out of the city of David, which is Zion. 3 Wherefore all the men of Israel assembled themselves unto the king in the feast which was in the seventh month. 4 And all the elders of Israel came; and the Levites took up the ark. 5 And they brought up the ark, and the tabernacle of the congregation, and all the holy vessels that were in the tabernacle, these did the priests and the Levites bring up…….

God’s Glory Fills the Temple

V:11 And it came to pass, when the priests were come out of the holy place: for all the priests that were present were sanctified, and did not then wait by course: 12 Also the Levites which were the singers, …. being arrayed in white linen, having cymbals and psalteries and harps, stood at the east end of the altar, and with them an hundred and twenty priests sounding with trumpets: 13 It came even to pass, as the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the LORD; and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music, and praised the LORD, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever: that then the house was filled with a cloud, even the house of the LORD; 14 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.”

The Assembly:

The Glory of the Lord filling the temple is a picture of the future Glory of God, the Holy Spirit, filling the New Testament temple, the believers in Jesus, the Messiah.

2 Chronicles 5:3 “Wherefore all the men of Israel assembled themselves unto the king in the feast”

During the dedication of the temple the people were assembled. The actual word that is translated “church” in the New Testament is  ekklesia which means “an assembly or congregation”, whereas the word “church” comes from the Scottish word “kirk” and refers to the building where the people meet. The believers in Messiah are actually the assembly of those who believe in Jesus Christ, the King of Kings.

The Work is Finished:

Thus all the work that Solomon made for the house of the LORD was finished”

Solomon’s name in Hebrew is from the root word Shalam, and means “amends”. In this story he is a type of Jesus, who finished the work of atonement.

Shalam: “make amends, make an end, finish, full, give again, make good” This is what Jesus did for us by dying on the cross and making amends between God and man. He has finished the work:  John 19:30 “When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.”

Because Jesus / Solomon had finished the work of building the temple, it could now be filled with the ark which held the presence of God. The temple that Solomon built was made of the materials of the earth, stone, wood, gold and silver. The Temple that Jesus has built is also made up of the things of the earth, because God created man out of the dust of the ground, but we are the living stones.

1 Cor 3:16 “ 16 Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you? 17 If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him. For God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple.”

1 Peter 2: “4 As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him – 5 you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.”

The Temple is dedicated during the Feast of Tabernacles:

2 Chron 5: 3 “Wherefore all the men of Israel assembled themselves unto the king in the feast which was in the seventh month.”

The appointed Feast in the 7th month is the Feast of Tabernacles. It begins with the Feast of the blowing of Trumpets, called Yom Teruah, then comes the Day of Atonement, called Yom Kippur and ends with the 8 day long celebration of Tabernacles or Sukkot, when everyone lived in booths for a week. This is significant because the Day of Atonement is the most holy day of the year in the Hebrew calendar. It was a day of deep repentance for the people. 2 Chronicles also tells us in verse 11 that all the priests were sanctified, or made holy. Because Jesus made atonement for us, we, as Kingdom priests, are also made holy.

Hebrews 2: 17 Wherefore in all things it behooved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation (atonement) for the sins of the people.

Romans 5: 11 “And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.”

The Tabernacle of David is Brought Up

Solomon brought up the tabernacle and all the pieces of furniture that were in it up to the new Temple in Jerusalem. He also established the singers in the Temple, which is a type of New Testament worship.

2 Chronicles 5: “And all the elders of Israel came; and the Levites took up the ark. 5 ; And they brought up the ark, and the tabernacle of the congregation, and all the holy vessels that were in the tabernacle, these did the priests and the Levites bring up…… 12 Also the Levites which were the singers, …. being arrayed in white linen, having cymbals and psalteries and harps.”

When David brought the Ark back to Jerusalem (2 Samuel 6) he did not put it in the Tabernacle of Moses, which was still standing on Mount Gibeon, but he built a new tent for it on Mount Zion. Here he established 24 hour worship with songs and instruments.

….but in the midst of the Tabernacle of David on Mount Zion; and further that there were no animal sacrifices there, only sacrifices of praise and thanksgiving; and no priests, but only Levites, whom David appointed “to minister before the ark of the Lord, and to record,” that is literally to make mention of, or bring to remembrance, or in other words to proclaim or preach the mercies and the marvelous acts of God, “and to thank and praise the Lord God of Israel” (1 Chr. 16:4). This was a very remarkable suspension of the system of worship of the Law, and an equally remarkable foreshadowing of that of the Gospel. And so it was during the greater part of King David’s reign, during all the years the ark of God dwelt in the Tabernacle of David.2

Isaiah 16:5 tells us the the Lamb will rule from the Tabernacle of David: “And in mercy shall the throne be established: and he shall sit upon it in truth in the tabernacle of David, judging, and seeking judgment, and hasting righteousness.”

The Bible promises in the book of Amos (Amos 9:11) that the Tabernacle of David would be restored at some future time. The Apostle James declared that this was fulfilled in the first century by the bringing in of the Gentiles to the assembly of believers:

Acts 15: 16 “After this I will return, and will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof, and I will set it up: 17 That the residue of men might seek after the Lord, and all the Gentiles, upon whom my name is called, saith the Lord, who doeth all these things.”

White Linen

The priests in Solomon’s temple were arrayed in white linen, which is symbolic of the righteousness of the saints when Jesus Christ washes away our sins.

Revelation 19: 7 “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. 8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.”

120 Priests Sounding Trumpets

1 Chronicles 5: 12 …….“and with them an hundred and twenty priests sounding with trumpets ……. 13 It came even to pass, as the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the LORD; and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music, and praised the LORD”

What occurred here at the dedication of Solomon’s temple is a prophetic symbol of the dedication of the early church when the Holy Spirit filled the believers on the day of Pentecost. The believers were all together in one accord (they were as one to make ONE sound)

Acts 2: 1 “And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place”

There were 120 waiting in the upper room, who were filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke in tongues, trumpeting the praises of God with their mouths!

Acts 1: 12 Then returned they unto Jerusalem …. 13And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, ….. 14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, … 15 And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)…… Acts 2: 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance…… 5 And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, (they had gathered there for the Feast of Pentecost) devout men, out of every nation under heaven. 6 Now when this was noised abroad, (They heard the believers speaking in tongues the trumpeters) the multitude came together, (and said in amazement)… we do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God.”

Just as the priests sang praises to God with the blowing of the trumpets on the day of the dedication of Solomon’s temple, so also, on the dedication day of the living temple of Jesus Christ, there were 120 trumpeter priests giving praise to God!

Peter’s Message is Atonement:

After Peter talks to the assembled crowd on the day that the ekklēsia of Jesus Christ is born, he tells them that the only way into this new temple is through the atoning work of Jesus through repentance:

Acts 2:37 “Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? 38 Then Peter said unto them, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. 39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call

Even as the glory cloud filled the temple of Solomon, the promise of the Glory of God, through the Holy Spirit, fills the Kingdom Temple of Jesus Christ. And as Peter tells us “this promise is for AS MANY AS THE LORD OUR GOD SHALL CALL”

Hosea 14: 1 “Return, Israel, to the Lord your God. Your sins have been your downfall! 2 Take words with you and return (repentance) to the Lord. Say to him: Forgive all our sins and receive us graciously, that we may offer the fruit of our lips.” (This is the Torah portion read every year in every Synagogue on the Sabbath between Yom Teruah and Yom Kippur during the Feast of Tabernacles)

1 Corinthians 5:8 “Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.”

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