RETURN TO INDEX
THE VOICE OF THE SEVENTH ANGEL
The title for this booklet is taken from Rev. 10:7: "But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished." Notice that it says the voice of the seventh angel. In the scriptures, a trumpet can be a symbol of a message which is spoken (see Isa. 58:1). The Word of God cannot be limited. Although in its end-time historical fulfillment, the seventh trumpet has not yet begun to sound, the voice of the seventh angel, or messenger, is even now being heard in a message of preparation. This 'messenger' is none other than the Lord Jesus Himself, who is pictured in Rev. 10:1-3 as standing on the earth and sea with a little book open in His hand. This is the hour when the contents of this little book are being made known to the servants of God.
The deeper truths presented in the messages of this booklet are for those who are hungering for a deeper insight into the marvels of our God and His purposes for those who love Him. It is not necessary for a person to understand all that is given herein to live an acceptable and commendable Christian life. Yet the understanding of these truths will greatly enhance one's appreciation of the workings of the Lord, enabling one to be more fitly prepared for certain responsibilities and ministry. Therefore much study and assimilation of these truths will give an added dimension in faith and usefulness in the Kingdom of God.
THE SPIRIT AND THE BRIDE SAY COME
We read in Zephaniah 1:7 these prophetic words: "Hold your peace at the presence of the Lord God: for the day of the Lord is at hand: for the Lord has prepared a sacrifice, and has bid his guests.” In the scriptures we read that a day is with the Lord as a thousand years (Ps. 90:4, II Pet. 3:8). Therefore that which is spoken of as the "Day of the Lord" in so many prophetic scriptures, must be understood in terms of God's reckoning of time from His perspective. This means that His "day" is the great 1000-year millennial Sabbath following man's six days (6,000 years) of labor in the sweat of his brow and in fruitless toil to bring forth a lasting peace and a just and equitable order on the earth. Therefore the Lord has decreed that He will fully take over the affairs of the earth and no longer let man pollute and destroy. A reign in righteousness will begin when His Day is fully inaugurated.
The "Day of the Lord" does not burst on us all of a sudden. It begins or dawns gradually. This can be seen from either of two perspectives. It can be seen in the natural phenomenon of a new day as it is brought about by the turning of the earth and the gradual increase of the light of the sun in a particular spot or area. Long before the sun actually appears over the horizon, there is the dawning of light and its increasing brightness.
The gradual unfolding of the "Day of the Lord" can also be seen from the perspective of the beginning of a new 24 hour day as it was reckoned by the people of Israel in the days of our Lord. Their new day began at sunset and progressed through the four "watches" of the first twelve hours from 6:00 P.M. to 6:00 A.M. This latter perspective is that which we will present in this writing. Already we are in the initial "watch" of the Day of the Lord, as we shall see later in this prophetic picture. But first, we shall consider some other important factors which are basic to our understanding of this picture.
[scriptural differentiations between the Bridal rapture and the later Marriage Supper rapture]
Now going back to the scripture that introduced this writing. Notice the reference to the presence of the Lord and the sacrifice which he has prepared, to which He has "bid" His guests. Check the marginal reading for the word "bid," and you will find that the original Hebrew word means to be "sanctified" or "prepared". It can also be translated to be "set apart." Now there is a two-fold setting apart; for there is a two-fold sacrifice or feast that is being prepared: the marriage supper of the Lamb (Rev. 19:9), and the supper of the great God (Rev. 19:17). The one is to be the result of his grace extended, and the other the result of His wrath poured out. The one is for the redeemed and glorified, and the other is for the refuse of the earth. One is to prepare for the inauguration of a righteous rule and government on the earth; the other is to sweep away man's refuge of lies. The guests for each are now being set apart.
Turn now to Rev. 22:17 and read this invitation. "And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that hears say, Come. And let him that is thirsty come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely." Notice that it is the Spirit AND the bride issuing the invitation to come. Now compare this with Rev. 19:9 where we read: "Blessed are they which are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb." WHO does the calling? Is a bride called or invited to her own wedding? Ridiculous! She does the inviting; and this is what Rev. 22:17 says. Therefore by the time the invitation of Rev. 19:9 is fully issued, the bride will have been united with her Lord in the heavenlies in order that the Spirit and the bride may say come. Now when does this take place?
It has already been shown in a number of prophecies and writings through this ministry that the 144,000 firstfruits are to be united with the Lord with glorified bodies at the beginning of the tribulation as the seventh trumpet begins to sound (Rev. 10:7). This is because they have been prepared ahead of time and are first (firstfruits) to enter into the glories of the heavenly realm. This is in harmony with Rev. 19:7: "Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife has made herself ready.” There is a difference between the marriage and the marriage supper. The supper is for the guests who are invited after the bride has been joined with her husband, although this feast is also a part of the marriage festivities. Now since the bride will have made herself ready first, she is to be joined to her husband at the beginning of the tribulation as the seventh trumpet sounds its initial blast. Then she will be able to help prepare those who are to be the guests at the marriage supper which takes place when the great host of saints are taken at the close of the tribulation. This she will be able to do because each of the 144,000 firstfruits Bride company will have the power to appear to the saints on the earth during the time of tribulation. These spirit-fortified saints will then be issuing the call to many during the tribulation to "take of the water of life freely." Therefore it is during the 3-1/2 years of tribulation that the Bride is busily engaged in issuing the invitation to "come," for she desires that her marriage supper be a bounteous occasion with many guests in attendance.
Since the Bride is made ready first, symbolized by her being the firstfruits to the Lamb (Rev. 14:4), she is also pictured in Revelation, Chapter 12, as being "born" out of the earthly church organism first, and being "caught up" to the throne (Rev. 12:1--2, 5). The "woman clothed with the sun" of Rev. 12:1-2 is not a picture of the heavenly bride of Christ, but a picture of the present church organism on earth travailing to bring forth mature sons. The first of these mature sons to be glorified and "caught- up" will be that “body” or company which is to make up the heavenly bride of our Lord. The fact that the "woman" brings forth a "manchild" portrays the truth that those who are brought forth and caught up to the throne of God have come into that spiritual maturity of which the "manchild" is a type. What? Do you think that the very choicest of roles in the heavenly realm, that of the Lord's own "Bride" is to be made up of any but matured sons? These matured sons (including both males and females) who make up the Bride company shall watch over and prepare those on earth during the tribulation who are going to be received into the heavenlies and make up that vast host who are the guests at the marriage supper.
This is in harmony with Psalm 45 where we have a picture of the King, and then the Queen "in gold (spiritual preparedness) of Ophir" (45:9), for she is "all glorious within: her clothing is of wrought gold." (45:13). Now notice others besides the queen in Verse 14: "She (the queen) shall be brought to the King in raiment of needlework: the virgins her companions that follow her shall be brought to you." Since they follow her, it would indicate that they arrive later. They are the "foolish virgins" of Matt. 25:1-12, who are left behind when the wise virgins (Bride) are taken at the midnight hour. But the picture in Psalm 45 shows that they shall also be brought to the King, although later: "With gladness and rejoicing shall they be brought: they shall enter into the King's palace" (45-15). The palace is the inner realm of heaven where the marriage festivities will take place. But some may remark: "Doesn't it say in Matt. 25:10 that the door was shut to the foolish virgins?" True, they are barred from being taken with the wise virgins when they go in to the marriage, but when that great event occurs, there will yet be time for the foolish virgins to prove themselves that the Lord may know them (see Matt. 25:12 and compare with Deut. 8:2 for this use of the word "know").
Now turn to Luke 11:5-10. We read a parable that Jesus told, about a "friend" who seeks bread at midnight, but receives the answer from his would-be benefactor, "Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee." (11:7). This is a parallel to the parable of the virgins in Matt. 25. The door was shut, and the children (the wise virgins) were on the inside ("with me in bed"). The "friend" or "foolish virgin" was on the outside knocking even as in Matt. 25:11. Now notice Luke 11:8-9: "I say to you, though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needs. And I say to you. Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you." Here we have the assurance that during the tribulation (after the midnight hour) those who remain may receive that which they need in order to eventually have the door opened to them. The "friend" asked for three loaves (11:5) and is finally assured of as many loaves as he needs. (11:8). Presumably, since he asked for three loaves, he would get what he asked for. These three loaves correspond to the "asking", "seeking", and "knocking"; and it is not until the third loaf (the knocking) that the assurance is given that the door will be opened. The three loaves correspond to the 30, 60, and 100 fold groups of Christians. (Mark 4:20). It is only the third loaf, 100 fold, who will "knock" and have the door opened to enter into the marriage supper of the Lamb in the "palace" of heaven. The 30 fold and 60 fold will remain on the earth to enter into the earth-based Kingdom.
Only the 100 fold, full grain in the ear (Mark 4:28) Christian, will have the wedding garment necessary for the wedding supper. Notice Jesus' parable recorded in Matt. 22:1-14, where a certain "friend" is symbolically expelled from the guests assembled for the wedding feast because he did not have on the specified wedding garment (22:12-13). Such will be the fate of many who are content to secure less than the three loaves necessary for entrance into the heavenly feast. The "garment" is the same as that which is indicated in Rev. 19:9; it is the "fine linen" of righteousness. Think not that the imputed righteousness of Christ is sufficient. This only introduces one into the 30 fold estate. The righteousness of Christ must also be imparted within (the 60 fold), and then fully integrated into the fabric of the soul, being "woven" by the working of the Word and the Spirit, until a beautiful garment (character) is the result. This is possible only through the Spirit-sanctified estate of the 100 fold, who have the extra oil in their vessels.
A further indication that those who are left when the first-fruits Bride is taken will have the opportunity to be made ready is found in Luke 12:35-36. "Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning; And you yourselves like to men that wait for their Lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he comes and knocks, they may open to him immediately.” Since the wise virgins (Bride company) go in to the marriage when the Bridegroom comes at the midnight hour (Matt. 25:10), the ones mentioned in Luke 12:36 are those left behind (foolish virgins) who must wait for their Lord to return from the wedding. But when does He return, and what is the meaning of the statement: "that when he comes and knocks, they may open to him immediately?" (Luke 12:36). We have already seen the foolish virgins knocking and being refused admittance to the marriage (Matt. 25:10-12), but we have also seen these same ones represented by the "friend" in Luke 11:5-9 knocking after the children (wise virgins) are on the inside, and receiving three loaves (entering the 100 fold estate through the Holy Spirit baptism); so we know that though the foolish virgins were left behind, they did go and "buy oil" (the Holy Spirit) for their lamps and their vessels (Matt. 25:9). But what then? Read Luke 12:35-36 again. "Let your loins be girded about and your lights burning." This would indicate that oil had been secured. Then the instruction is to wait (in expectancy) for the Lord to return from the wedding.
Here is a mystery that needs to be unveiled. Shortly after the Bride company has been received of the Lord and joined in nuptial joy with Him in the heavenly realms, both the Lord Himself and the glorified saints will begin to appear to those left behind. The pattern for this was set by Jesus after he was raised from the dead. He first ascended to the Father and then returned, appearing to the disciples and being seen of them for a period of 40 days (Acts 1:3). Even so will it be in the end time. After the firstfruits Bride is translated (corresponding in the pattern to the resurrection of Christ), they shall ascend to meet the Lord in the upper stratosphere; then within a few days, they shall return from the wedding to fulfill their duties throughout the tribulation period. Now we can understand Luke 12:36. Those left behind are to wait for the appearance of the Lord and the glorified saints, who will be able to materialize their bodies and visit those left. Such visitations will be the fulfillment of the Lord (or members of His Bride) coming and "knocking" (Luke 12:36), and the expectancy of the waiting ones is to be such that they will "open to him immediately" (Luke 12:36), Such visitations will also be a fulfillment of Rev. 3:20, where Jesus is pictured as "knocking" during the closing years of the Laodicean era. Thus throughout the entire period of the tribulation, the Lord and the glorified members of His Bride will continue to appear to those who are waiting, expecting and "opening the door." In the scriptures, forty is the number of testing. Even so, Jesus' appearance to the disciples for 40 days following His resurrection sets the pattern for the end-time appearance of Jesus and the Bridal company of 144,000 glorified saints during the testing period of the entire tribulation.
[the four watches]
The Lord Jesus emphasized repeatedly the necessity of "watching" relative to His coming again. Notice His words in Mark 13:33-37: "Take [ ] heed, watch and pray: for you know not when the time is. For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch. Watch [ ] therefore: for you know not when the master of the house comes, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning: Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping. And what I say to you I say to all. Watch." The admonition to "watch" is intimately linked with the references to the "watches" of the night as they were designated at that time under the Roman rule. The first watch referred to as "at even" was from six to nine; the second watch was from nine to twelve and was called the "midnight" watch; the third watch from twelve to three was designated the "cockcrowing" watch; and the fourth watch from three to six is spoken of as "in the morning".
[the first watch]
Although Jesus was emphasizing the uncertainty of the exact time of His coming. He was also giving a veiled insight into the various phases of His end-time coming. Actually there is a phase or episode of His coming that is fulfilled in each of the four watches mentioned. According to the Jewish reckoning of time, a new day of twenty four hours always began "at even" with the setting of the sun. Thus a "new day" begins with the setting in of darkness. However, "darkness" is always associated with the world and not with Christ and Christians. This is pointed out by Paul in I Thess. 5:5-6: "You are all children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober." In those days people generally did very little after sunset and with darkness setting in they went to bed and to sleep, rising early in the morning with the rising of the sun. But notice that Paul says "Let us not sleep, as do others (the world); but let us watch". Here we have an enigma which can only be solved as we realize the difference between Christians and the world. Christians are "the children of light, and the children of the day" and "not of the night, nor of darkness.” Therefore when Jesus speaks of His coming first "at even," He is referring to that end-time period when a new day is beginning; to the world it means the setting in of increased darkness, but to those who are ''watching," this first watch of the new day means an increase of spiritual light or truth; it is his coming in a further revelation of Himself to give light (understanding) to His intimate followers.
But it is a "new day" only to those who are "watching,” to those who are not sleeping as is the world. We are now witnessing the "coming" of the Lord ''at even"—in the first watch of the new day. Never before since the days of the apostles in the first century has there been such an increase in spiritual light and understanding as in our day. To those who are not asleep but are watching, the Spirit of the Lord is speaking, "Arise, shine; for your light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon you." (Isa. 60:1). But notice the very next verse. It shows the contrast between that which is taking place among the "watching "ones in the first watch, and that which is overtaking the world. “For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise on you, and his glory shall be seen upon you.” (Isa. 60:2). Thus the Lord is coming (in the power of His Spirit) to bring light and glory to His people. We are now in the inception period of this coming; "at even", or in the first watch of the new day.
[the second watch]
Turning back to Mark 13:35, we notice that Jesus also warned that as the Master of His house He would also come "at midnight." Midnight concludes the second watch of the night; but as we have already seen, since the Hebrew day began at sunset, it is actually the second period of a new day. We must keep in mind the double significance of the prophetic picture. To most of the world the "day of the Lord" is a period of increasing darkness. (See Joel 2:1-2, Zeph. 1:15). But to God's called out remnant who are "watching" and are not of the night, nor of the darkness, and who are not asleep, it is a time of increasing light. Concerning the Lord's coming "at midnight," we read in Matt, 25:6, "And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom comes." The "wise virgins" were taken into the marriage, and the "foolish virgins" were left. This coming at midnight is referred to elsewhere as Jesus' coming "as a thief." Notice Rev. 3:3, "If therefore you shall not watch, I will come on you as a thief, and you shall not know what hour I will come on you.” Notice the warning of being unprepared as were the foolish virgins. The same warning note is sounded in Rev. 16:15, "Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watches, and keeps his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame." A thief, when he breaks in to take something, does not announce his coming, and the only evidence that he has "visited" is that something is missing. He comes "at an hour when you think not" (Luke 12:40). He comes to "make up His jewels" (Mal. 3:17). These "jewels" are the 144,000 firstfruits who are virgins (wise virgins) and who are "redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits to God and to the Lamb" (Rev. 14:4). They will be translated at the beginning of the tribulation period, for they are "accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man" (Luke 21:36). Concerning these "jewels" the Lord says, "I will spare them, as a man spares his own son that serves him." (Mal. 3:17). Since they have a ministry to fulfill on the earth during the tribulation, the Lord speaks further, "Then shall you return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serves God and him that serves him not." (Mal. 3:18). Concerning the "thief-like" coming of Jesus we read in Matt. 24:43, "But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have allowed his house to be broken up" (or "through"--see Luke 12:39. The "house" referred to is the church, which is the "household of God" (Ephes. 2:19). This is the "price" he exacts of a careless household which is not "watching" and not ready. He "breaks through" and takes the wise virgins, for "they that were ready went in with Him to the marriage" (Matt. 25:10). This is in harmony with Rev. 19:7 which says "Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife has made herself ready."
[the third watch]
Again going back to Mark 13:35 we see a further coming of the Lord “at the cockcrowing." "The cockcrowing" ends the third watch, which was from midnight to three. It was undoubtedly during this very watch that Peter denied his Lord. Previously, as they went out into the Mount of Olives following the Passover supper together, Jesus had said to Peter, "Verily I say to you, That this day, even in this night, before the cock crow twice, you shall deny me thrice." (Mark 14:30). It happened even as Jesus had spoken (see Mark 14:66-72). Thus, in the scriptures, "the cockcrowing" is prophetically connected with Peter's denial. What does this show us? It shows us that those who are not taken at the midnight hour, and are left to go through the tribulation period, have at some time and in some measure denied their Lord. The tribulation is therefore to test them and prove them that the Lord might know them, and that they might be made ready to be called to the marriage supper. When the Lord comes "at the cockcrowing," it is for all those who have been made ready during the tribulation, both the "foolish virgins" and what might be called the "tribulation saints" (those who have come to know the Lord during the tribulation period and have had sufficient time to develop from a "blade" to a "full corn in the ear" Christian). (Mark 4:28). Even as in the natural, the crowing of the cock awakens those who are sleeping, so will it be when Jesus comes "at the cockcrowing;" those who are "asleep in Jesus" will be raised. Immediately following, the saints who are alive shall be "caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air." (I Thess. 4:13-17).
This coming of Jesus "at the cockcrowing" immediately follows the tribulation period, for it is "in those days, after that tribulation" that He shall "send his angels, and shall gather together his elect" (see Mark 13:24-27). A more detailed picture of the order of events "in those days, after that tribulation" is given in the book of Revelation. Just before the seven vials of wrath are poured out on the earth (see Rev. Chapter 16), the elect saints are united with the Lord and begin their ascent toward the temple in heaven. This is pictured in Rev. 14:14-16 by one "like to the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle." By this sharp sickle He reaps the "harvest of the earth," gathering the ripened grain into the "barn" of His heavenly kingdom, for "then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father" (see Matt. 13:30, 43). These glorified saints are seen in Rev., Chapter 15, after their gathering to the Lord, singing a song of victory and deliverance (15:2-4). Immediately following the reaping (gathering) of the elect saints, we read in Rev. 14:17-19 of an angel with another sharp sickle with the command to "gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are ripe." The sickle is thrust in to gather the vine of the earth and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of God. This "wrath of God" is the result of the seven "vials of wrath" being poured out on the earth (see Rev. 15:1,7; 16:1). Not until these vials of wrath begin to be poured out on the earth, do the saints who have been translated and gathered to Jesus enter into the temple in heaven to share in the marriage supper of the Lamb. (Rev. 15:8).
At the same time the saints are participating in the marriage supper of the Lamb in the temple in heaven, there is an invitation going forth for another supper which is taking place on the earth. We read in Rev. 19:17 these words; "And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven (Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God; That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great." There are two kinds of guests at this supper: the thousands of humans who are to be slain in the outpouring of the vials of wrath, and the fowls of the air who will eat their fill of the flesh of the dead. The marriage festivities in heaven will come to an end just before the final vial of wrath is poured out on the earth. Then down to earth will descend the Lord Jesus, followed by the multitude of saints "on white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean" (see Rev. 19:11-14).
[the fourth watch]
Now we are ready for the final phase of the "coming" of the Lord as it is symbolized by the "watches" as recorded in Mark 13:35. The final watch, which was from three to six, is referred to by Jesus as "in the morning." This is when the Lord "comes with ten thousands of his saints" (Jude 14). He arrives just as the final vial of wrath is poured out, for "he treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God" (Rev. 19:15). He is revealed from heaven "in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ." (II Thess. 1:8). This is when He comes "with power and great glory," being seen by those on earth who have survived the atomic holocaust which rages throughout the seven vials of wrath. What the inhabitants of the earth will actually see first is the "sign" of the Son of man in heaven (Matt. 24:30). This is the "glory cloud" which will begin to be seen when He gathers His elect just before the final vials of wrath. It will be this supernatural light appearing in the sky that will cause the "tribes of the earth" to mourn. Finally they shall see the Son of man coming "in the clouds of heaven" with power and great glory (Matt. 24:30). The "clouds" which surround Him as He appears are the hosts of the redeemed and glorified saints. Matt. 24:31, rather than giving an account of something following His appearing in power and glory, is an explanatory detail encompassed within the overall picture of His glorious return, to show the meaning of the "clouds" which accompany Him. The clouds are the "elect" who will have been gathered previously and who appear with Him in His manifestation of great glory.
Now let us summarize. We are to be watching for His coming. But before we fully know how to "watch," we must understand the different phases of His coming as portrayed by Jesus in Mark 13:35. Right now He is coming "at even," the beginning of the Day of the Lord, and we are watching for and are even now participating in a greater revelation of Himself as He comes in the power of His Spirit to give light and understanding of His end-time purposes for His Church. He is now visiting His temple in a time of quickening, cleansing, restoration, and preparation for a second Pentecost and a mighty world-wide outpouring of the Holy Spirit such as the world has never seen. This preparatory move of the Spirit is to make ready a people who shall be used mightily in the time of tribulation which is coming, and who will be an instrument in the hand of the Lord to reap a great harvest throughout the earth. Are you "watching" daily that He might give you greater light and understanding, moving with the Spirit into that which He has purposed for this end time?
Are you also watching for His coming "at midnight?" Is the "lamp" of His word burning brightly? Do you have extra oil in your vessel, that you might have the "spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him?" (Ephes. 1:17). Is that oil of His Spirit in sufficient supply that the love of God may be shed abroad in your heart? (Rom. 5:5). Do you know the "love of Christ, which passes knowledge, that you might be filled with all the fullness of God?" (Ephes. 3:19). You see, beloved, there is a lot more to having extra oil them claiming to have had an experience. The 144,000 Bride company which shall be received of the Bridegroom at the midnight hour are those who "follow the Lamb wherever he goes" (Rev. 14:4). Are you hearing His voice and following Him in everything? Whether you qualify for the Bride or not, it is important for you to be as ready as possible To receive the mighty outpouring of the Spirit which is to follow shortly after the Bride is translated, for it will come upon a prepared people; a people who will be used mightily by the Lord during the harvest days of the tribulation period. And in that day, if you are not taken as a part of the Bride, then quickly "watch" for the secret appearance of the Lord or one of his glorified saints, even as the Lord appeared to His disciples in the upper room after His resurrection (Luke 24:36), or to the two who walked on the road to Emmaus (Luke 24:13-31), or to others in that day. Yes, "let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning; and you yourselves like to men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he comes and knocks, they may open to him immediately" (Luke 12:35-36). Since those who are glorified do not need doors to be opened to them (see John 20:19), the "knocking'' and the "opening" is a spiritual readiness to receive, even to those who are "watching."
After the mighty and glorious ministry of the saints on the earth during the tribulation, then there must be a readiness and "watching" for Jesus' coming "at the cockcrowing." For that is when all those truly sanctified will be changed and "caught up" to be with the Lord (I Cor. 15:51-54), I Thess. 4:14-17). Then, after the marriage supper in heaven, the Lord will return with all of His saints to rule and reign on the earth. This is His coming "in the morning" in power and great glory. "So now, my people, is the time to hear the voice of your God and prepare. The Spirit is saying 'come,' for the hour is late and my people are so woefully unprepared for that which is soon to unfold. There is much for my people to enter into before the Bride is taken. It is now the Spirit who says ‘come;’ in this new day of the Lord's visitation and unveiling to His people. But in time it will be Spirit and the Bride who will say ‘come;’ for saints in glorified power will be working diligently with saints yet in earthly vesture to secure an abundant gathering to the Lord, for the day of nuptial festivities will be drawing near and garments of beauty and glory must be donned by all who would enter therein."
THE NEW JERUSALEM
[developmental construction over history]
“Let me show you, says the Lord , that which is to come on the earth as the Kingdom which has been prepared begins to function in full power, and causes the earth to be drawn into a new orbit of rectification and restitution. For all things that the prophets have spoken must be fulfilled (Acts 3:21), and the knowledge of the glory of the Lord shall fill the earth as the waters cover the sea (Habakkuk 2:14). Now the glory of the Lord shall be centered in the New Jerusalem, which shall come down out of heaven even to the earth (Rev. 21:2, 10). Herein is a mystery which must be explained, and even now do I reveal it to you. The New Jerusalem has been in preparation for many years. Its inception was even before the beginning of the Christian era. Its foundations were being laid at the same time that the city of Jerusalem in the land of Palestine was becoming the center of the Kingdom of Israel; during the days that David caused the city to be fully taken and began to build it as the city of the kings and the governmental center of the chosen nation. Even so, during those same days did the Jerusalem which is above begin to come into being, and to exert its influence upon the affairs of the earth. For as in heaven, so must it be on the earth. For all that is earthly is patterned after the heavenly; and the earthly Jerusalem is a reflection of the Jerusalem which is in the heavenlies.
Since the beginning of the Christian era, when paradise above was opened to the redeemed saints, much work on the New Jerusalem has been carried on by those whose affinity to its realm was sufficient for attunement with its vibratory pitch, and whose power-projection had reached the necessary output to enable them to handle and channel the pulsating substance-material out of which the New Jerusalem is being formed. For only those attuned to the beauty of its realm, and highly skilled in thought and emotion projection, can be used to help build that celestial city. Think not that those who are functioning in their soul-bodies in paradise are idle. For after earthly garments are laid aside in death, the redeemed saints begin to fulfill the purposes or their God in the realms above. After a period of rest and reflection on the lessons of their earth life, they begin to be used in various ways in accordance with their understanding and spiritual development. Although there are cycles of repose and waiting, and though complete fulfillment will not come until their lost physical bodies are restored, the saints in paradise are busily engaged in assigned tasks.
The foundations of the Jerusalem which is above were laid byyour God. Only divine wisdom and power can lay that which is foundational, whether that be in the heavens or on the earth (I Cor. 3:11). Following the laying of the foundations, the wall and basic superstructure of the city were formed by the more advanced of the angelic beings under divine guidance and direction. At that time there were no redeemed humans in the upper realms of paradise where the New Jerusalem was being fashioned. All who had lived on the earth were confined to the realms of Sheol inside the earth. Even those whose souls had been redeemed through the animal sacrifices, had to remain in the nether realms until sin's ransom price was paid in full by the sacrifice of the Son of God. Only then could they be liberated into the realms of paradise above.
[redemption overview and introduction to levels of heaven]
This is portrayed in scripture by the cities of refuge which were designated on both sides of the Jordan. They provided protection for those who sought refuge in them until justice could be meted out. Those found worthy of continued protection remained in the city of refuge until the death of the High Priest who was in office at the time; then they were free to return to their homes. (Num. 35:25-28). This is a type, says the Lord, of that which was provided in the unseen realms before the cross of Calvary. There were 'cities of refuge" in the nether realms for those whose sins had been remitted through the blood sacrifices. There they were protected from hateful and savage attacks from both the evil spirits and unredeemed humans. They had to remain in these 'cities of refuge' until the death of Jesus Christ, the anti-typical High Priest. Then they were ‘freed’ to be taken to that 'home' which had been prepared in paradise above. This is why Jesus Christ descended first into the lower parts of the earth. 'He led captivity captive and gave gifts to men.’ (Ephes. 4:8). In other words, He led from captivity the captives. He led from Sheol inside the earth those who (even though saved) were still kept 'captive' within the environs of the earth, because the full liberating price had not been paid. But after His death and resurrection, He personally led the saints of the pre-Christian eras to their new home in paradise. Thus He 'gave giftsto men.' Although including much more, the 'gifts' provided the giving of a new home to those He led forth from Sheol. After leaving the saints in paradise, Jesus ascended 'far above all heavens' (Ephes. 4:10). The inspired statement presents the truth that there are several heavens, (see also II Cor. 12:1-4). These 'heavens' are not far off beyond some distant star, but are invisible realms or 'strata' surrounding and superimposed on the earth, one above the other progressing out (or away) from the earth, and also progressing 'up' to higher vibrational pitches until the highest heaven is reached. The first heaven, or paradise, is beyond the earth's atmospheric envelope, and beyond the reach of Satanic spirits who occupy the area immediately surrounding the earth and within the earth. Satan is referred to in the inspired record as the 'prince of the power of the air' (Ephes. 2:2), showing that his dominion closely approximates the area of the earth's atmosphere.
[paradise: garden estate for the city builders]
Since the death and resurrection of Christ, the saved who die go directly to paradise, which was referred to by Jesus as 'Abraham's bosom' (Luke 16:22). This conveys the idea of comfort and rest. Since paradise is only the 'first heaven' from the perspective of those who leave the earth sphere, it is not the inner realm of the Most High God; neither the surrounding realms which are reserved for those who have never been tainted by sin. Paradise corresponds to the 'garden realm' outside the estate of the King and the realms of those who are in His full service. It is a realm of great beauty and peace. The scenery is quite similar to that of earth, yet more pulsating and 'alive,' yielding more to the creative powers of thought and the inner dynamic of beautiful character externalized. It corresponds on the plane of soul to the 'paradise' or garden of Eden which was lost by men of flesh. Thus, in a measure, those whose souls are redeemed are permitted a re-entry into a sinless paradise. But the full entrance to the lost estate does not come until the redemption of the physical body and the entrance into the Kingdom prepared for those who love the Lord. The inner realms of the heavens cannot be opened, except to those who enter into the ultimate of the redemption of the physical, even the glorification of the body of flesh until it is fashioned like to Christ's glorious body (Phil. 3:21). Those who are yet functioning in that secondary vehicle called the soul, are confined to the realm of paradise. While waiting for their completed redemption, the redeemed ones in paradise are engaged in many useful pursuits that are related to the coming of the Kingdom of the Heavens to the earth. One of the most important is the work being done on the New Jerusalem by many saints in the upper realms of paradise.
[orbital influence on earth over history]
The New Jerusalem above began to exercise a more pronounced influence on the course of earth events in the days of the birth of the Messiah. Although then in its beginning stages, with foundation and rudimentary structure only, it was lowered into the earth's atmosphere and became the guiding star which led the wise men from the east to the place where Jesus was born. The New Jerusalem is a celestial city, and cannot be seen by those in the physical except under certain conditions. When coming into contact with the earth's atmosphere, it emits a glory which impinges into the vibratory range of physical sight. It then appears in the heaven as a light or star. The New Jerusalem is now being prepared for its second descent into the earth's atmosphere. It will then be ready for occupancy by those who are destined to be in the heavenly Kingdom, ruling and reigning with Christ. It will become the home and headquarters of the heavenly government which will rule over the inhabitants of the earth. It will be established in a special polarity with the Jerusalem on the earth, and the two Jerusalems, one in the heavenlies and one on the earth, will provide the means for the bringing of the entire earth realm into the fulness of the purpose of your God.
At the beginning of the millennium, the New Jerusalem will have descended to the upper stratosphere and will remain there until the close of the millennium, it will then be withdrawn from the vicinity of the earth as Satan is again loosed from the bottomless pit to deceive certain nations. (Rev. 20:7-9). After the final rebellion, when the earth receives its baptism of fire, the New Jerusalem will once again descend to earth. This will follow the 'new heaven and new earth' as described by the apostle John (Rev. 21:1-2). At that time the New Jerusalem will not remain in the upper stratosphere as during the millennium, but it will descend to the very environs of the earth, making possible the fulfillment of the inspired record of the apostle John: '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. And he that saton the throne said, Behold, I make all things new.' (Rev. 21:3-5).
[the bridal city: union with earth]
You will notice, says the Lord, that this final descent of the New Jerusalem is pictured by John as 'the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband' (Rev. 21:2). This is that ultimate union of heaven and earth which is the object of the redemptive work of Jesus Christ, where man is fully reunited with His creator and heavenly father, and where the effects of sin on the earth and earth-man are completely undone. The beginning of this union is portrayed through the prophet Isaiah as the marriage of the land and earthly Israel with redeemed and glorified sons.'You shall no more be termed Forsaken; neither shall your land any more be termed Desolate; but you shall be called Hephzibah, andyour land Beliah: for the Lord delights in you, andyour land shall be married. For as a young manmarries a virgin, so shall your sons marry you: and as the bridegroomrejoices over the bride, so shallyour God rejoice overyou (Isa. 62:4-5). The 'sons' here are the glorified humans who have been joined to the Lord in the New Jerusalem, and such union in the heavenly Kingdom is likened in the book of Revelation to that of a Bride and a Bridegroom. But there is to be a further joining together when the heavenly city comes down to be united with the earth. Then shall the glorified sons in the heavenly Jerusalem be joined in the likeness of marriage to the virgin daughter of the earthly Jerusalem: the cleansed and restored remnant of Israel dwelling in the land of Palestine. Also the Lord will be united to His earthly people as Bridegroom and Bride, for as in heaven so must it be on earth. Even as the Lord has a heavenly Bride in the Jerusalem above, so will He have an earthly Bride in the Jerusalem below.
In its initial stages this uniting of heaven and earth takes place at the beginning of the Millennium, but its complete fulfillment awaits the new heaven and new earth. You will notice that twice in the book of Revelation the New Jerusalem is seen by John as descending out of heaven (Rev. 21:2, 21:9-10). The firstmentioned is that which follows the new heaven and new earth, for John is recording a panoramic view of the sweep of history to the ultimate of the Lord's plan for the earth. Immediately following this projection into the distant future, there comes to John one of the seven angels who had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, showing him another view of the holy Jerusalem descending, and also giving him a detailed view of its construction (Rev. 21:9, 22:7). The fact that it was one of the angels of the last plagues who opened up this vision to John, shows that the scene described is one that will take place at the close of the present age in preparation for the millennial reign; whereas the previous over-all vision will not take place for many ages yet. This is further shown by the fact that this detailed picture of the New Jerusalem, and the influence it is to have upon the earth, are portrayed to John as ‘things which must shortly be done' (Rev. 22:6), and immediately the added injunction is given by the Lord Jesus, 'Behold I come quickly’ (Rev. 22:7). These statements are definitely related to the present age and its consummation. Furthermore, the New Jerusalem descending after the new heaven and new earth, is seen as ‘a bride adorned for her husband' (Rev. 21:2); whereas in the scene relating to the inception of the millennial age now drawing near, the city is seen as 'the bride, the Lamb's wife' (Rev. 21:9). This is because Jesus is no longer seen as 'a lamb' after the millennial Kingdom is fully inaugurated, and in the ages to come.
The New Jerusalem is first and primarily the city of the Bride. Although not all who will dwell therein fulfill the role of the Bride, they will be closely related to the Bride company. The Bride will remain close to her Lord, taking charge of the affairs of the holy city; for that is her domain. Others, who are not a part of the Bride, will be engaged in direct overseeing of the affairs of the earth; for they will be sent on missions to the earth to carry out their responsibilities and then return. Besides many duties relating to the Holy City itself, the Bride will be used in a particular way that relates to the eternal life begetting of those who are inhabiting the earth after the millennial Kingdom has been established. Because of this she will be periodically engaged in 'mothering' many who will grow up on the earth and enter into maturity and manifest sonship without ever entering into sin. From time to time members of the Bride company will descend to the earth for this 'mothering' purpose. No further insight into this function will be revealed at the present time. Except for these periodic visits to the earth, the Bride's sphere of service will be within her own celestial city.
[the glory light]
Now let me show you more about the city itself. Since the city is made of glorified substances that are related more to the invisible and heavenly, than to the visible and earth, it is not dependent on physical light from the sun. Thus is it written that 'the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did illumine it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.' (Rev. 21:23). This light which floods the celestial city emanates from the very being of the Lord Himself, who is seen by John as 'the Lamb,' for the New Jerusalem Bride and her retinue are the direct fruit of His sacrifice on the behalf of sinful humanity. But you will notice that it is the 'glory of God' whichillumines the city. As 'God', the Lord is thekeeper of the city and its inhabitants; therefore He provides His Glory for its light. The 'glory' is that light-projection or vibrational substance which carries the power-essence of Deity to accomplish many things that are related to the fulfillment of His will. Since the vibrational pitch of this glory-substance can vary greatly, it can be unseen as far as earthlings are concerned, or it can be projected into the realm of physical sight. It can be increased or decreased in size or extent of penetration, or it can be segmented so that portions can be in different places for different purposes, it was this glory that descended on Mt. Sinai and was seen by the people of Israel as a cloud and at times as fire (Ex. 19;9, 16, 24:15-18). It was a portion of this glory-substance that led the children of Israel through the wilderness, and which abode within and upon the tabernacle (Numb. 9:15-23). It was seen by the prophet Ezekiel in connection with the appearance of the cherubim (Ezek. 1:4-5). It filled the temple of Solomon on the day of its dedication (1 Kings 8:10-11). It was seen by Ezekiel leaving the temple in the days of Israel's apostasy (Ezek. 10:18; 11:23). It descended on Jesus as He was transfigured before Peter, James and John (Matt. 17:5). It will make a visible appearance to the surviving inhabitants of the earth as the SIGN of the Son of man shortly before He is seen in person (Matt. 24:30). A portion of this glory-substance is imparted to every Christian who is sanctified by the fiery Spirit baptism, pictured in the descent of the glory-cloud on the tabernacle (Ex, 29:43, 40:34).
This glory-light will not only permeate and radiate from the New Jerusalem, but it will also penetrate into the realm of physical perception to the degree that it will be seen by the earth inhabitants as a light in the sky at night. Since John indicates that 'the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it' (Rev. 21:24), it is given to you to understand that the nations which are united together in the Kingdom confederacy with the Jerusalem government at the head, will not only see its light emanation, but will 'walk' in harmony with the spiritual oversight and 'light,' or understanding, which will be provided by the glorified humans who will descend from that celestial city to shepherd the earth inhabitants. Only the nations in the Kingdom confederacy will receive the full benefit of this spiritual illumination and oversight. Other nations will be ruled as with a 'rod of iron' (Rev. 2:27). In other words, since they will not submit completely and willingly to all that is required for full Kingdom participation, they will be kept under constant surveillance and regulation by the Jerusalem above. The 'rod of iron' will be the ability of the glorified ones to appear in the flesh and give needed directives; possessing also the power to back them up if necessary.
John further states that the kings of the earth will bring their glory and honor into the New Jerusalem (Rev. 21:24). The 'kings' mentioned are not earthbound flesh and blood humans, but rather the glorified saints who are to be kings and priests reigning over the earth (Rev. 5:10). Only they will have access to the New Jerusalem above, and therefore only they could bring their glory into it. Since many of the glorified saints will be engaged in going and coming, to carry out their duties on the earth, the gates of the city will never be shut; for there will be no such a thing as night in a realm that is not dependent on the light of the sun, neither affected by earth conditions. (Rev. 21:23, 25).
[the river and tree of life]
Inside the holy city, John was shown a river of pure water proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb (Rev, 22:1). Yes, there is what might be termed 'glorified water' in the celestial city. There are also trees, flowers, and other types of growth that correspond on the celestial plane to the natural phenomena on the earth. Such objects of beauty, however, do not grow from seeds as on the earth. They are formed by the molding of glorified substance-material through thought and emotion projection, and are placed where the master designer has determined. Each individual saint in the New Jerusalem will have his or her own suite or 'mansion' to fashion and mold according to personal desire. Places of abode, gardens, streams, trees, and all the 'natural scenery' that a person may want can be fashioned: a sort of externalization of inner beauty and character traits. Thus there will be infinite variety, as different as each person is different, with no limit to creative thought and inner soul dynamic. Such 'creative ability' will increase with time as skill is achieved, and as the inner qualities within each saint become increasingly conformed to that perfection which intensifies that output of developing power-tubes.
On either side of the river of life, John saw the tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruit, and yielding a fresh crop once every month (Rev. 22:2). This tree is the celestial counterpart to the 'tree of life' which is provided through Christ to sinful humans that they might pass from death to life. Its fruit and leaves do not grow as on an earthly tree, but they gradually form through energy processes that are built into the tree. Such fruit is utilized by the inhabitants of the city for stepping up their own energy output in the functioning of their glorified bodies. John saw that the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations' (Rev. 22:2). This definitely projects the use of this tree into the realm of the earth and the physical. Just as medicinal value is found in the trees and plants of the earth, so in the heavenly archetype. For as in heaven, so is it on earth. For that which is earthly is patterned after that which is first in the heavenlies. Since the leaves in a celestial city are not directly available to earth men, that 'healing power' which is available through them must be channeled through glorified saints ministering on the earth. As natural healing comes through the natural means of earth-produced remedies, so does supernatural healing come from that which is supernatural. A glorified saint will have the power to minister healing to an earthling through the supernatural life-substance that is contained in a leaf from the tree of life.
You will notice that the tree of life is energized by the river of water of life, and the water proceeds out of the throne of God which is established within the New Jerusalem. The 'throne of God' is also the throne of the Lamb, (Rev. 22:1, 3). Here we have presented the divine-human nature of the Lord Jesus Christ. Before He was incarnated in human flesh, as the mighty YAHWEH, He was the God or ‘keeper’ of all earth creation. When He emptied Himself and tookupon the form of a man, being incarnated in human flesh (Phil. 2:6-8), the mighty FATHER GOD took over and became the active keeper of all earth creation. Since the FATHER GOD gave HIS SON for humanity’s redemption, it was incumbent on Him to actively oversee and keep the creation which HIS SON was in the process of redeeming. But when the redemption was completed, then THE SON resumed His GOD-role over the creation which He had first brought into being, and for which He gave Himself in totality as humanity’s redeemer. In His role as redeemer He is pictured as the 'Lamb of God,' (John 1:29, 36, Rev. 5:12), and until the primary redemptive cycle is complete, and the Kingdom fully established in the earth. He will still be seen as the Lamb. This is why His throne, the focal point New Jerusalem, is called 'the throne of God and of the Lamb.’ (Rev. 22:1, 3). He is both the GOD (or keeper) and the LAMB (or redeemer) of earth creation. And thus He rules the inhabitants of the earth both as the Creator-God, who brought all things into being (Heb. 1:2, John 1:3, 8, Col. 1:16), and as the Messiah-King, a glorified human of the house of David (Luke 1:32-33).
The throne which the great Yahweh-Jesus will occupy when the New Jerusalem becomes the headquarters for earth rule, is not the same as that which He is now seated on. The throne which He now shares with His Father is in the highest heaven, and is the focal point, not only of the government and oversight of the earth, but of a vast universe. The New Jerusalem throne is that which He will occupy when that city descends into the earth's upper stratosphere as He returns in power and great glory, and which He has promised to share with the overcomers (Rev. 3:21). As the acting GOD (or keeper) of earth life, Yahweh-Jesus is now pictured as being on the 'right hand' of the Father (Acts 2:34, 7:55, Rom. 8:34, Ephes. 1:20, Col. 3:1, Heb. 1:3). But the mighty Father, referred to as 'the Majesty on high' (Heb. 1:3), although not actively engaged in the oversight of earth affairs, is THE GOD over all, even the KEEPER of a vast universe and of billions of spirit children in various stages of developing maturity. But to earthlings, Yahweh-Jesus is the only Creator, God and Redeemer. Besides Him there is NONE OTHER (who is the 'God' or keeper of all the earth). What has been brought into being by and through Him (I Cor. 8:6), He is responsible for (Isa. 44:6, 43:11).
Let me now speak to you of the composition of the holy city. The inspired apostle was given to see the city as 'pure gold, like to clear glass' (Rev. 21:18), and it appeared to him as 'a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal' (Rev. 21:11). The city is constructed of what might be called 'glorified substances.' They are composed of elements which have gone through a transformation process until they are no longer gross and dense as are earth substances. They are finely attenuated and 'refined' to the ultimate until they transcend the limits of the purely physical and earthly. Yet they are very real substances; but having taken up their existence on a higher plane of being. Therefore when the inspired apostle speaks of the street of the city of pure gold (Rev.21:21) he is not just using a figurative expression. But the appearance to him was not as the solid of earth gold, but rather translucent, like to certain types of glass. Thus the entire city, a perfect cube of 1500 miles [2400 km], in its exterior periphery, is made of pure gold (Rev. 21:16, 18).
[the wall and gates]
Surrounding the city, John saw a wall 216 feet [ 65.8 m] high (Rev. 21:17), and composed of precious stones. The wall had twelve foundation stones, each precious and different, and ornamented in construction as to appear garnished (Rev. 21:14, 19-20). In the wall were twelve gates; each gate made of one pearl, and at each gate an angel of the Lord (Rev. 21:12, 21). On the gates were written the names of the twelve tribes of Israel, and on the foundation stones were written the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb. (Rev. 21:12, 14). The names are thus symbolic of the truth that only through the 'gate' of that spiritual birth which makes a person an Israelite indeed according to 'the spirit' (Rom. 2:28-29), is there a promise of entrance into the celestial city, and only those whose lives are ordered and founded in the truth of the doctrine of the apostles (Acts 2:42) will actually be chosen to enter that city when it first comes to take its place in the atmosphere of the earth. There are many other truths relating to the wall, its gates and its foundations, which will not be revealed to you at this time.
As John surveyed the inside of the city he said: ‘And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.' (Rev. 21:22). A temple is not needed in a city where that which a temple represents is present IN PERSON. A 'temple' is an outward representation or manifestation of the presence of the Lord among those who are not ready to dwell with Him in person. Or, in its New Testament meaning, the 'living temple' of the Lord is made up of all those who are indwelt by the Spirit, and who are being made ready to dwell with the Lord in person. Thus, they manifest His invisible presence in the earth. But when the Lord has made ready a people to dwell with Him in person, then there is no further need for Him to be represented by a temple or to spiritually indwell a living temple. He will dwell personally, and not representatively or spiritually, among His glorified saints; they shall see His face and His name shall be in their foreheads (Rev. 22:4). His name being 'in their foreheads' is symbolic of their complete identification with Him in His Kingly reign, and the impartation to them of that power-vibration necessary for their role of reigning with Him.
[more to come]
There are yet many things that I would reveal to you concerning the New Jerusalem and the coming ages of Kingdom manifestation on the earth. In time they shall be made known to you. The New Jerusalem is to be the first of many cities which will be formed in the heavenlies and eventually placed in the environs of the earth. This is pictured in the Old Testament scriptures by the Levitical cities which were located throughout the tribal territories of the Israel nation. There were forty-eight of such cities. (Num. 35:7). These cities were given to the Levites because they were set apart for the ministry of the Lord, and they had no inheritance in the land along with their brethren (Deut. 10:8-9). Even so do these Levitical cities portray the specially prepared cities for those who will no longer have a part in the land or earth-based Kingdom, but will have been glorified and will be fully ministering to the Lord in the celestial cities surrounding the earth. It will take many ages of progression in the plan of your God before all of these cities are formed and ready for earthlings who will be 'graduating' from the earthly realm and translated into the celestial realm, functioning in the glory of maturing sons of God.
Therefore hasten [ ], saysyour God, that you might be among those who will be first partakers in the cities celestial, being received of the Lord into the New Jerusalem when He comes to be 'glorified in his saints' (II Thess. 1:10). For even now is that city being readied for its descent to the earth's upper stratosphere, and even now are suites being furnished for those who are making themselves ready whether that be of the BRIDE, who will be received first, at the beginning of the tribulation period, or those ‘calledto the marriage supper' (Rev. 19:9), becoming a part of the Bridal company to dwell within the holy city for the ages to come. Hasten to hear the voice of your God calling you to prepare, for surely the time is hastening when that which I have givenyou to know shall begin to come to pass. Time quivers in the balance. Tremors of heaven's alighting are increasing their tempo. Hearken [ ] now and believe,says the Lord."
(End of prophecy).
GARMENTS FOR GLORY AND BEAUTY
"Let me show you, says the Lord, that which shall come forth at the close of this age. It is even that which you read about in my Word. And what says it? 'Christ loved the church 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, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.' (Ephes. 5:25-27). Hear now the voice of the Seventh Messenger speaking. Seven is the number of my church—those who have been called out of this world and joined to me; therefore I speak in the power or essence of the number Seven to those who will hear my voice and become a part of that which I am preparing to bring forth. For the time is now, and all things are leading up to the coming forth of this glorious church.
You will notice that it is a glorious church that I will present to myself; I will not present it to myself and then make it glorious. It will be glorious on earth before it is glorious in the Heavenlies. Let me take you, therefore, to my Word and unveil the type that I have enacted to portray this glorious church.
You shall turn to the 28th Chapter of Exodus and there behold the High Priest and the garments that were made for him. It is written that the garments were ‘for glory and beauty’ (28:2). They were especially fashioned that the High Priest might minister to me in the priest's office. Now hear my word! The garments portray the glory and beauty which is to come forth in my church in this last day, for the High Priest and the garments are one picture of that which shall be fulfilled in a people who have been completely joined to me. The High Priest is a type of the entire Body of Christ, both Head and members. The primary fulfillment of the ministry of the High Priest was realized in the person and ministry of Jesus Christ: His life, death, resurrection and glorification. But the complete fulfillment is to be manifested in the 'mystery' of His Body—that people who shall show forth His glory and beauty on the earth, and then be joined unto Him in the heavenly Kingdom: who have been made ONE with Him in His high priestly ministry; who are 'members of His Body, of His flesh, and of His bones' (Ephes.5:30).
This unity is portrayed in the Psalmist's picture of the anointing oil which was poured on the head of the High Priest and flowed down on his garments. ‘Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment on the head, that ran down on the beard, even Aaron's beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments' (Psalm 133:1-2).
In order to show that the garments of glory and beauty with which Aaron was adorned represent the ministry of a glorious church on earth, I would call your attention to the ceremonies enacted on the great Day of Atonement. There you will notice that the High Priest, in order to minister beyond the veil, which is a type of the heavenlies, divested himself of his beautiful garments and changed into garments of pure white from head to foot (Lev. 16:4). These white linen garments were to be worn only in his ministry beyond the veil, and when this was finished he removed them and put on his regular garments (Lev. 16:23). Now what does this portray? It portrays the fact that when the Body of Christ has finished its ministry on the earth, there shall be a 'putting on' of changed and translated bodies which will no longer be flesh and blood but flesh and bone (Luke 24:39). Such bodies or garments are for those who are completely clothed in the white linen of righteousness (Rev. 19:8, 14). In their own native heavenly realm, these changed bodies glow with a soft white light. But behold the type! The garments of glory and beauty made for the High Priest out of materials of blue, purple, scarlet, gold and precious stones, were for ministering in the Holy Place outside the veil, picturing conditions on the earth. Therefore a glorious church must come forth on the earth before entrance beyond the veil into the heavenlies.
[The Clothing in Detail]
Now let us examine each of the articles of clothing or apparel with which the High Priest was clothed, and in doing so I shall unveil that which will come forth in the people of my choosing. First, I would have you note that it was Moses who was commanded to make 'holy garments' for Aaron (Ex. 28:2), and it was Moses who placed the garments on Aaron at the time of his consecration (Lev, 8:6-9). Here again is a double type. Even as the High Priest was a type, both of Christ and His Body, so is Moses a type of Christ and a certain portion of His Body. Basically, the garments of 'glory and beauty' portray provisions of Christ in His atoning and redemptive work, but the adorning or bringing forth of the glorious church is also dependent on the ministry of certain chosen ones who make up the Moses company in contrast to the Aaron company.
Who are these that must be brought to a place of power and authority ahead of the coming forth of the glorious church? They are the ‘manifested sons' who will put on immortality and be no longer subject to death. And because of their spirit-powered ministry, they will be used mightily to bring the rest of the Body of Christ into a place of spiritual unity and power. There will be a two-fold manifestation: 144,000 firstfruit saints shall be translated at the beginning of the tribulation period. They will have the ability to appear and minister to the saints remaining. A much smaller group will put on immortality in physical bodies, remaining on the earth to minister in a realm of power to help bring forth the glorious church. Although the beginning stages are even now evident in many places, the full glory of the church will not come forth until the tribulation period has begun.
The first garment mentioned in the order of instructions for fashioning was the ephod. (Ex. 28:6-14). From the perspective of your God, this was the basic garment of the High Priest's clothing. The ephod was the outermost garment covering the upper body. It was the most decorative item of his apparel. More than anything else it was the mark of his office. The ephod was made of two pieces of variegated material—of gold and blue and purple and scarlet and fine twined linen—joined together at the shoulders and slipped over the head. It was fastened around the body by means of a belt-like sash woven as a part of the garment. A part of the ephod were two engraved stones, set in gold filigrees and sewn on the garment where the shoulder pieces came together. (Ex. 28:9-12). Also an integral part of the ephod was the breastplate of judgment (Ex. 28:12-30). It was made of the same variegated material as the ephod. The material was folded twice forming a pouch about 9-1/2 inches [24 cm] square. It was secured to the ephod in front, over the heart, by being tied with chains of gold at the top. The chains were slipped through rings of gold, which were sewn on the borders at the top of each side of the breastplate, and fastened to filigrees on the shoulder pieces. It was secured to the ephod at the bottom by ribbons of blue. The ribbons were slipped through the rings of gold, which were sewn on the inside borders at the bottom of the breastplate, and tied to other rings of gold sewn on the sides of the ephod just above the belt-like sash.
Twelve stones, one for each of the tribes of Israel, were set in enclosures of gold and attached to the front of the breastplate, making four rows of stones (Ex. 28:17-21). Each one of the stones was to have the name of one of the tribes engraved on it. The two stones on the shoulder pieces were also to have the names of the twelve tribes engraved on them, six on each stone. It was a part of the function of the High Priest to bear these names on his shoulders and on his heart when he went into the tabernacle to minister before the Lord. (Ex. 28:12, 30). Inside the pouch-like enclosure of the breastplate were placed the Urim and Thummim, by means of which the High Priest secured direct answers from the Lord God concerning the affairs of the nation. The Urim and Thummim were special objects given to Moses when he was in the mount receiving the instructions for the tabernacle and the priesthood. They were received from the hand of the Lord God even as the original tablets of stone on which were written the Ten Commandments. The Ten Commandments were the basic precepts-in-righteousness which were to form the foundation for the life of the nation; therefore they were engraved on specially prepared stones. The Urim and Thummim, in the possession of the High Priest, provided the means for direct guidance in the application and implementation of the basic precepts. They were therefore an important adjunct to the tablets of stone. When used by the High Priest they would emit the basic colors that form light, much the same way that a prism refracts the light of the sun and breaks it down into the seven primary colors. The very word 'Urim' means light. No natural light was needed to use the objects; the light was within them; but they had to be used together in order to produce the effect indicated by the name 'Thummim' which means perfection. The word shows the basic or primary answer received for a perfect application and implementation of the Ten Commandments. There was no excuse for uncertainty. The mind of the Lord could easily be received on any question and it would be a perfect 'break down' of the truth or light given in the Ten Commandments. These objects will be considered later, for since all things pertaining to the High Priesthood were typical, and have their spiritual counterpart, it is not necessary for you to understand just how the Urim and Thummim were used.
Since the ephod was the basic garment of the High Priest, let me show you what it typifies. All the garments of the High Priest portray various aspects of the human tabernacle which houses the spirit begotten of God. Just as the tabernacle pitched in the wilderness consisted of two basic parts: the outer court and the tent enclosure; so are there two parts to that which houses the human spirit: the outer physical body, and the inner soul body. Contact by the human spirit with the Divine Spirit is made through the vehicle of the soul. The soul partakes of the life forces of the physical, but is a much more highly tenuous vehicle which is sensitive to impressions from the spirit world. Since the ephod was the garment which enabled the High Priest to communicate with Deity, it is a type of the soul of the born-again Christian. Before the soul can be a medium for communication with the Divine, it must first be cleansed from the defiling effects of sin; this is effected through the blood of Jesus Christ. Then it must be infused with Divine life, making it possible for its forces to be oriented God-ward, and providing the means for its complete restructure in the likeness of the Son of God. A soul which is steeped in sin is naturally attuned to the vibratory impingements of the enemy - Satan. It is extremely susceptible to the thought-impressions and desire-pulls of invisible evil forces. Therefore, in order to become a medium for Divine-human communication, it must be thoroughly purged and purified, so that it will receive and entertain only those vibratory influences which are uplifting and edifying.
I shall speak to you concerning each part of the ephod and its accompanying breastplate, and show its typical meaning as it pertains to the soul of the born-again Christian. To be 'born again' means to be regenerated within by the incorruptible seed of Christ (I Pet. 1:23, James 1:21), receiving LIFE into the soul; and causing the soul to become a deathless vehicle for the human spirit. In the unsaved person, who has not received LIFE through Christ, the soul is subject to death even as is the physical body (Ezek. 18:20, Matt. 10: 28). But in the saved person, the soul has been flushed through with eternal life, and in the event of the death of the physical body, the soul then becomes a functioning body or vehicle for the spirit in the celestial realms. Now the powers or functions of the soul, which constitute man a living personality in the objective world, can be used either independently of God or in subjection to the mind and will of God. The purpose of this word of revelation is to show how the soul becomes attuned to Divine life and consciousness, becoming no longer a vehicle for self-expression, dominated by uncleanness through the powers of darkness; but a vehicle for the expression of the very nature and being of the Christ of God.
After the initial cleansing of the soul through the blood of Christ, and the receiving of LIFE through the incorruptible seed, a point of contact has been established within the soul which becomes a conductor for the Spirit of God to flow to energize and uplift. Also, since the 'seed' which has been engrafted into the soul is from the glorified body of the Son of God, it contains all the essence of His very nature and being, and thus becomes a 'perfection vortex’ for the complete restructuring of the fabric of the soul into His likeness. Therefore the Living Word (the engrafted seed - the Christ within) and the Spirit (the Holy Spirit) work together to weave and furbish with 'cunning work' (Ex. 28:6) the 'ephod' or soul garment of the born-again Christian. The basic material for the ephod was fine linen. This fine linen is a type of the righteousness of Jesus Christ (Rev. 19:8) which is imparted to the soul by the Word and the Spirit (I Cor. 1:30, Il Cor. 5:21, Rom. 8:4). The soul is 'made righteous' only through Christ; there is no other way. The righteousness of Christ which is first imputed to those who believe in His atoning work, causing them to be justified freely by His grace (Rom. 3:22-24, 4:5-11, 22-25), must thereafter be imparted and 'woven' as an integral part of the fabric of the soul.
Other elements are also to be 'woven' into the soul-fabric, as indicated by the fine linen being supplemented by gold, blue, purple and scarlet (Ex. 28:6). The 'gold' represents tried and proven character which comes only through the crucible of experience, as the grace of Christ, working by means of the Holy Spirit, causes one to rise above temptation, pressures, and various fiery trials, weaving in the beauty of steadfastness, patience, and faithfulness, without bitterness, wrath, or turning back (Rom. 5:3-5, James 1:2-4, I Pet. 1:6-8, Heb. 10:35-39). The blue in the ephod is a type of heavenly aspirations: that which causes one to set his mind on things that are above where Christ is seated at the right hand of God the Father (Col. 3:1). 'Thinking' is an important function of the powers of the soul. The creative ability of the mind can greatly determine the warp and woof of the soul's texture. Through the power of the risen Christ within, the mind must be quickened to the present reigning of Christ as Lord over one's entire being, causing the entirety of one's thoughts to be centered in the continuous reality of His presence, so that nothing is seen apart from His providential working. If this concept can be inculcated and practiced daily, the mind will be continually renewed and the life transformed, enabling the 'blue' of heaven's aura to become an integral part of the soul's beauty (Ephes. 4:23, Rom. 12:2). The purple in the ephod is a picture of the crowning glory of one who is to be a king-priest with Christ, to rule and reign with Him in His Kingdom (Rev. 5:10, 20:6). Closely related to this, and indispensable to it, is the scarlet of sacrificial love; the willingness to give one's all to the Savior in devotion and obedience. For it is only love poured out that enables the Holy Spirit to 'weave in' these qualities which partake of the scarlet and purple of the ‘royal priesthood’ and the beauties of maturing sonship. (I John 3:16).
[The Robe of the Ephod]
Before looking further, at the typical significance of the ephod, the related garments must be considered. Immediately under the ephod was a garment known as the 'robe of the ephod' (Ex, 28:31-35). It was made completely of blue material. It was slipped over the head as was the ephod, providing a complete covering for the upper body and reaching down to just below the knees. Since it was a more complete covering than the ephod, it could be seen where it reached down over the upper arms in the form of short sleeves and where it reached below the ephod at the bottom. Being of a coarser material than the ephod, all of one color and unadorned, it is a type of the physical body which is the outer covering or 'garment' for the human spirit in the objective world. This might be difficult to understand since it was worn under the ephod. But the garments of the High Priest are seen from the point of view of contact and communication with God; and the chief instrument which receives and transmits thought-impulses, and becomes sensitized to Spirit awareness and Spirit workings, being fashioned and adorned with the very beauty and character of Jesus Christ, is that highly tenuous vehicle or body called the soul. The soul interpenetrates the physical body and forms a liaison substance between the human spirit and the physical body. Because its consistency is of a finely attenuated texture, it enables the indwelling spirit to 'seat' or make contact in the physical body and use the physical body as an expressive vehicle in the objective world. Also because of its highly tenuous nature, the soul is very sensitive to impressions made upon it, much the same as a sensitive recording instrument; thus feeling and response function through the soul, receiving and emitting mental-emotional reactions and attitudes. It becomes then the sum and substance of a person's nature or personality; and also woven into its fabric is the essence of one's character. Since the beauty and adornment of the High priest's garments were in the ephod, and not in the robe of the ephod, it portrays by type that the Christian-priest in the Body of Christ is to manifest the beauty of Christ's life and character from the inner man of the heart or soul, and not be primarily concerned with the adornment of the outer or physical man (see I Pet. 3:3-4). Also, since the ephod was worn on the outside and its beauty seen, while the robe of the ephod was under it and only partially visible, it portrays the truth that what others should ‘see’ and be conscious of is the beauty and glory of the Christ within, shining through in expression of a soul completely re-shaped and fashioned in His likeness, rather than the outward or exterior appearance of the physical man.
Around the hem of the robe of the ephod were sewn replicas of pomegranates made of blue and purple and scarlet. In between the pomegranates were placed bells of gold, designed to make a sound as the High Priest ministered before the Lord in the Holy Place (Ex. 28:33-35). The pomegranates are a type of fruitfulness because of their multitudinous seeds. Since they were on the robe of the ephod they indicate that ‘fruit’ or seed which is engendered by the life forces within the physical body. Only a small fraction of the billions of seed-cells produced within the body of a normal male are ever used to beget children. Therefore it should be obvious to all that there is another purpose for this seed. It is beyond the scope of this 'word' to fully detail the hidden function and purpose of this life seed, but in the coming era of the manifesting sons of God, it will become common knowledge. And even in the closing stages of this age, those who are to fully enter into the glory of the priestly ministry of Christ on the earth will come to know the mysteries involved. The ‘mystery’ of the pomegranates is closely related to the golden bells which alternated between them on the hem of the robe of the ephod. Gold is a type of the Spirit and things Divine. The bells, functioning as the High Priest ministered before the Lord in the Holy Place, indicates, by type, that all of the life forces must be channeled to the 'gold' of Spirit, ‘that he die not’ (Ex. 28:35). In other words, this is the key to immortality in human flesh. It was in the Holy Place OUTSIDE the veil that the High Priest ministered with these garments - with the pomegranates and the bells. Thus they portray a secret for those who would enter into the fullness of Christ's redemptive work while still on the earth in bodies of flesh and blood. Even the Lord Jesus alluded to this mystery as recorded in Matthew 19:12.
Having considered the robe of the ephod, let me now show you the typical significance of that garment which was under it, next to the body of the High Priest. A white tunic, woven of fine linen, and covering the entire upper and lower body was placed on the High Priest first. On top of this was worn the robe of the ephod, and then the ephod itself was put on last. (Ex. 28:39, 29:5). The tunic reached to the feet and also covered the arms with long, tight-fitting sleeves. It was large enough to hang loose on the body, but was girded to the body by means of a specially made sash, decorated with various colors. I have already shown you how the ephod represents the soul of the born-again Christian, and the robe of the ephod the physical body. Forming a connecting link between the highly tenuous soul and the body of flesh, is what is known as the 'autonomic nervous system.' The various nerves and nerve ganglia are represented by the strands of finely twined linen of which the tunic was woven. This self-acting nervous system, with its sympathetic and parasympathetic systems, causes the physical organism to respond and react to desires, feelings and emotions that arise as a result of soul-powers resident within. This is why it is so important to have the right mental-emotional attitudes at all times. The power of the soul to affect the condition of the physical body is great. For example, anger arising in the soul has its effect on certain organs in the physical body by their being activated through stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system. Thus, a wide variety of negative and destructive emotions and ingrained feelings can greatly weaken the body's normal functioning and make it far more susceptible to the inroads of predatory organisms which are ever ready to take advantage of areas of weakness in the physical body. The finely twined linen of the tunic, which covered the entire body of the High Priest, is an apt picture of the fine and delicate nerve fibers which act as a communications system throughout the entire body. No person can adequately and effectively minister as a Christian-priest in the service of the Lord without a healthy influence of soul powers on the physical body. This comes only as the Christ within is allowed to control and direct all the mental and emotional processes into channels that will spiritually uplift, and increase the flow of the life of the Spirit to the quickening of the physical body through the sympathetic nervous system. Otherwise the reactions of mental-emotional stimuli on the body will be destructive and harmful.
Although the tunic itself was entirely of white linen, the sash with which it was girded was decorated with needlework of various colors. This again is to portray the typical relationship of the tunic with the ephod, for the ephod was variegated with the same colors. In other words, the ephod, or soul, is closely connected to the tunic, which represents the autonomic nervous system. Through this system, the soul affects the body of flesh, or the robe of the ephod, which was worn between the ephod and the tunic. Can you not see, my people, that the priesthood ministry involved the whole man? It is my purpose that there should be a perfect relationship between the functions of soul (the mental-emotional faculties) and the physical body. For only then can the physical body be a perfectly healthy vehicle for the priesthood ministry of My saints. Think not that the physical body was fashioned to be subject to death. It is a necessary part of the total man in the service of his God. Its complete redemption is a necessary part of my total plan for man, and that redemption provides for the perfect relationship and functioning of both body and soul.
Now let us look more closely at the 'breastplate of judgment.’ Aaron was to ‘bear the judgment of the children of Israel upon his heart before the Lord continually.' (Ex. 28:30). This was by means of the twelve precious stones on which the names of the twelve tribes were engraved (Ex. 28:21). Primarily this portrays the judicial sentence which Jesus Christ, the true High Priest, took on Himself in order that those who believe in Him might be free. The High Priest's bearing them on his heart continually portrays the continuous intercession of Jesus Christ at the right hand of the Father (Rom. 8:34, Heb. 7:25). But there is a further meaning as it applies to the life of the Christian-Priest. Precious stones are cut to reflect the beauty of light as it casts its beams into the various color formations - causing each stone to sparkle with its own unique characteristics. As each stone on the breastplate was engraved with a name of one of the tribes of Israel, so does this portray the fact that each stone is a type of a particular characteristic or virtue which is to be imparted and 'engraved' into the very soul structure of every true Israelite. Such 'precious stones' will reflect the beauty of the very life of Jesus Christ which fills the inner being of every Spirit-sanctified Christian. The typical and spiritual significance of every tribe and every stone should be fulfilled in the inner life of every Christian who desires to enter into the full priesthood ministry of Jesus Christ. For every part of the High Priest's adornment is a portrayal of that which can become an integral part of the Christian's life and experience.
[The Urim and Thummim]
Placed inside the pouch-like fold of the breastplate of judgment were the Urim and Thummim. I have already shown you that these were objects given to Moses by which the High Priest could discern the mind of the Lord on specific issues relating to the application and implementation of the Ten Commandments. But what is their antitypical significance in the life of the Christian-priest? The breastplate of judgment with its Urim and Thummim was an integral part of the ephod. I have already shown you that the ephod is a type of the regenerated soul of the born-again Christian. Such a soul has been 'attuned' to the Divine consciousness, and if kept free from contaminating influences, is increasingly sensitive to communication from the Spirit of the Lord. In its basic or fundamental aspects, this communication is received in the form of impressions, spiritual discernment, dreams, and the spiritual awareness of parabolic experiences which are a part of the daily providential oversight of every Christian. This is the Christian-priest with the ephod as he ministers unto the Lord, and as he receives from the Lord communication beamed through the glands and sympathetic nervous system into the soul or inner consciousness. To this basic communication can be added the Urim and Thummim. This involves an increased sensitivity to the voice of the Lord, speaking more specifically, and not in general impressions.
Such increased sensitivity is first brought about by the Urim, which means light. The 'light' is the increased whiteness, or purity, of the soul body, plus the adjustment by Divine intervention of certain internal 'cords' which make it possible for reception in the human organism to be 'stepped up' to a higher intensity. Thus the ability to ‘tune in' to the light-rays beaming the 'voice of the Lord' to those who have come into possession of the 'Urim’ is greatly increased. The 'Urim' first comes into initial functioning when a Christian submits himself to the operations of the Holy Spirit in that which is known as the fiery Spirit baptism. But most Christians are so woefully ignorant of the true nature and purpose of the baptism of the Holy Spirit, and so ill taught on how to maintain their Spirit sanctification, enabling the soul to be kept free from defiling influences, that they receive little benefit from the spiritual operation of the 'Urim’ within.
The ultimate in communication from the Lord can be experienced only as the Thummim is also working with the Urim. Thummim means perfection or completeness. It comes into operation in the human organism only after the entering into immortality. As long as mortality is working in the physical body, there cannot be the ultimate in perfection within the life of the Christian-priest. Neither can he fully minister to the Lord in the antitypical adornment of the priesthood. The 'Thummim ' functioning within causes certain changes to take place in the glandular system, enabling the immortal to be attuned to vibration waves and impulses that are not within the range of the mortal. The immortal thus not oniy 'hears,' but also 'sees' that which mortals cannot. There is not only an increased reception of vibratory impulses conveying the words of the Lord to the inner consciousness, but there is also the opening up of a whole new realm of sight perception, as previously unseen visual impulses convey to the newly keyed receptors a vast range of color formations emanating from within the souls of men. This is why it is said of Jesus that 'he knew all men, and needed not that any should testify of man: for he knew what was in man.' (John 2:24-25). Jesus walked on the earth as an immortal, and He could see the thought formations and emotional patterns which came forth in vibratory color-tones. Such formations and patterns vary greatly from extremely ugly and grotesque to very beautiful. Thus the 'Thummim' added to the 'Urim' within the immortal makes possible a realm of experience and ministry far beyond that of the mortal.
[The Tribal Name Stones]
There is yet one more part of the Ephod which needs to be unveiled in its antitypical fulfillment: the stones on which were engraved the names of the tribes of Israel, and which were fastened upon the shoulder pieces of the ephod. There were two stones, and each one was to have six tribal names engraved on it. (Ex. 28:9-11). Aaron was to bear these names before the Lord on his two shoulders for a memorial. (Ex. 28:12). In Biblical symbolism, the shoulder stands for strength. (Isa. 9:6). The High priest bearing the tribes of Israel on his shoulders is a picture of the sustaining strength of Jesus Christ, the true High Priest, in the impartations of His divine life and power to all who avail themselves of His grace. In its individual fulfillment in the Christian-priest, the engraved stones upon the shoulders is a type of the overcoming grace provided through the strength or power of the Holy Spirit's infilling. This 'fulness' is portrayed by the engraving of all of the tribal names on the two shoulder stones. The stones on the shoulder pieces and the stones in the breastplate were symbolically connected by means of the chains of gold which were secured to the settings of the shoulder stones and slipped through rings of gold attached to the borders of the breastplate. Thus connected, both sets of stones indicate the two-fold work of the Spirit in regeneration and impartation. The stones in the breastplate are particularly indicative of the work of regeneration, and the stones set on the shoulders are especially representative of that impartation which comes at the time of the Holy Spirit baptism.
The final part of the High Priest's garments to be considered is the head dress with its plate of gold engraved with the words 'Holiness to the Lord.' (Ex. 28:36-37). The head dress, or mitre, was made of fine linen to portray the totality of the righteousness of Jesus Christ which 'adorns' the Christian-priest as it controls every aspect of his being, including the mind. The plate of gold with its engraving is symbolic of a special work of divine grace in preparing those who are to come forth with a ministry that relates to the Word being 'sealed' within, that the mind of Christ may flow through to minister LIFE. The ‘gold’ of the plate signifies a divine work of the Spirit whereby the 'holiness' or separating to the Lord is fully accomplished, that the mind might be an open channel for the living Word of the Lord. This is symbolized by the fact that the plate of pure gold was always on the High Priest's forehead (Ex. 28:38). Even so are the servants of God to be sealed in their foreheads, to be made ready for a ministry in the power of the living Word (Rev. 7:2-3).
You have now seen, my people, how I must clothe you in garments of beauty and glory, that you might be ready to minister to me. I am even now bringing my people into a further understanding of that which has been partially hidden or veiled, but is now to be revealed. There is much yet to be made known concerning the priesthood ministry of my saints on the earth, and as you are able to receive, I will reveal it to you. Therefore I call to you to make yourself completely available to the workings of my Word and Spirit, that you might be fully adorned for the mighty end-time harvest which is coming. Let me fulfill in you all that is portrayed in the garments of the High Priest. Even so shall you be used for my glory in the days that are ahead.”
(End of prophecy).
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