Month 2:3, Week 1:2 (Shanee/Matzah), Year:Day 5939:33 AM|
Jericho March 3/7, Van Staden Count 3/14
2Exodus 2/40, Omer Count Sabbath #2/5
Gregorian Calendar Tuesday 21 April 2015
The Twelve Witnesses
Continued from Part 23
Fluency of Revelation
Have you ever felt envious of the patriarchs of old when it comes to the apparent ease with which they communicated with Yahweh? This was certainly true of Joshua the son on Nun. From the second verse of the first chapter of the book which takes his name, Yahweh is speaking at length to this leader of Israel. The text doesn't tell us how he received his first instructions. Certainly messages were typically transmitted to leaders through nevi'im (prophets) though there no indication that such a medium was involved in Yahweh's communications to Joshua, or that the Cohen Gadol's (High priest's) Urim and Thummim were consulted (Num.27:21). At the conclusion of Deuteronomy we are given a hint of the nature of this man's gifting and how it was imparted to him:
The Mantle of Moses Passed to Joshua
"Now Joshua the son of Nun was full of the Ruach Hochmah (Spirit of Wisdom), for Moses had laid his hands on him; so the children of Israel heeded him, and did as Yahweh had commanded Moses" (Deut.34:9, NKJV).
There is both an orderly transmission of toqef (authority) from one leader to another as well as evidence of spiritual reception for the people to see. Joshua's reputation was well-known. He was, after all, the only survivor of the first generation aside from Caleb and Moses, all of whom clearly walked with Yahweh. And now the mantle of Moses was passed to him, much as Elijah's was to Elisha.
The Prophet Must Be Obedient
One of the key qualifications of a navi (prophet), and indeed of any anoined leader in Israel, is obedience. The text specifies the nature of Joshua's obedience: "[He] did as Yahweh had commanded Moses". He didn't go inventing new Torah (Teaching, Law) or a new Besorah (Gospel).
Consequences of Disobedience
Obedience is both tough to learn and and absolutely necessity for every leader. Devotion to Yahweh and complete dedication to His Davar (Word) are absolute prerequisites. I say is is tough because even anointed leaders fail, as did Moses when he struck the rock to bring forth water the second time, both because on the occasion he took credit for the miracle but worse because he broke sacred tavnith (pattern). He was never commanded to do it a second time, nor would he have been, because of what striking the rock represented prophetically, namely, Yah'shua (Jesus) being struck for our transgressions on the cross. Yah'shua (Jesus) was not struck twice, but once only. Such disobedient behaviour can give rebels pretexts for future disobedience, as has indeed happened in the Roman Church which claims to be recrucifying the Messiah again and again at each Mass. So we have to be careful for not only will disobedience inevitably cause us trouble and much unnecessary suffering, but it can lead to trouble and pointless suffering for those under the authority of a leader like Moses, Joshua and others. I mentioned Moses as an example. You only have to read the annals of the Kings of Israel, both the 'good' like David and the 'evil' like Ahaz, the father of Hezekiah, for you to appreciate what I am saying. Though there is mercy and forgiveness upon the confession of 'good' leaders like David (who committed the two worse sins imaginable - murder and adultery), he, his household, and the nation over which he was monarch paid for the consequences through the rest of his life.
Preparing Yesterday's Devotional
I dare say we can all look back in shame at acts of disobedience on our part. Yesterday was a point in question for me personally. I arose at 5.45 am to write yesterday's Jericho II devotional. Though I made a couple of mistakes which a brother graciously corrected for me (I am grateful and indebted to him for his constant watchfulness over me, for none of us are infallible), the devotional flowed freely. A little over two hours later I was done, as well as tired, and I went back to bed to make up for lost sleep.
Disbedience Followed by a Spiritual Attack
No sooner had my head touched my pillow than I heard the voioce of Yahweh speaking unmistakably to. "Get up at once!" He said. I was incredulous. I thought to myself, "I am exhausted, I am ill as it is, and I have fulfilled my task, surely He cannot mean that!" So I doubted it was Yahweh - that was my excuse - and went to sleep. A very short time after I came under massive spiritual attack and awoke even more exhausted. It was, in retrospect, a bad start to the day, as things got progressively worse.
From Bad to Worse
Now I am not sure whether I gave the enemy a legal right to do what he did to me because of my disobedience, or whether Yahweh knew in advance what the Enemy was going to do because, perhaps, the article was not to his liking. Maybe it was both (who can search the mind of Elohim/God and know it?). But I set about my major task of the day with a wrong attitude that involved carrying a lot of heavy things. And though I received a lot of help, I was not listening to the Ruach (Spirit) to slow down and did far, far too much. All the signs were there that I was pushing myself over health safety lines and by the time I did decide to call a halt, feeling decidedly rotten and ill, it was too late. Things got from bad to worse. I had even published the early morning message as I was supposed to. My stomach ulcer was triggered and by the time it was time to go to bed, my fibromyalgia pain was off the charts. And yes, I disobeyed again! The Ruach (Spirit) told me to skip supper and eat a vegetable-fruit smoothie, but my flesh was overwhelmed by the aroma of a freshly cooked homemade pizza. I yielded and suffered even more.
Pain the Extreme
Three fruitless sessioons of taking medications to calm the ulcer and kill the pain were a failure. I tried the whole arsenal of medications at my disposal - twice and without any result. I was desperate, in a major panic, and my flesh was screaming out to go to the hospital for help. But I knew there was nothing more that the hospital could do. This was one of the most painful fibromyalgia and ulcer sessions I have ever had. All fleshy solutions were exhausted and all that was left was fervent prayer and begging Yahweh for forgiveness and healing.
"Go upstairs," He said in the middle of the night and I knew he wanted me to go to my devotional room. I obeyed. The pain did not subside even after the third round of medications. I was desperate. The temptation was great to accuse Him and make excuses but I resisted. My seership gift was completely disorientated, no doubt affected by all the poisonous medications I was taking in desperation for relief. Just prior to goint to my devotional room I did see a vision of the number '15' cut, as it were, in stone, and I knew this meant something would happen in 15 minutes' time. Fifteen minutes later the stomach pains subsided, as He said they would, and I rejoiced but only briefly because all the other pains which had been there before I disobeyed him and ate the delicious pizza were still there, and they were bad enough. Another session of prayer crying for grace followed and after another hour, I finally fell asleep.
Do Not Accuse the Almighty
I share this experience with you today to warn those tempetd to do so in times of affliction not to take the Davar Elohim (Word of God) lightly, no matter how apparently trivial. He told me not to go back to sleep, I disobeyed. As I prepare this davar (word) for you today I am completely worn out, feeling fragile and still feeling very ill, though without all that excruciating pain. To whom much is given, much is expected, and if we claim to be a talmid (disciple) and are called into leadership position, a higher standard of obedience is expected. Who are we to quarrel? Is the Almighty unrighteous? Who but someone in open rebellion would dare to level such an accusation against the Creator of this vast universe? Yet people do, and all the time, and they wonder why their lives are beset with ceasless trial and tribulation, particularly those who once knew Him and turned away. Far better for such a soul to kep silent and not accuse.
The Latter-Day Joshua To Come
At the beginning of the Book of Joshua the revelation is flowing freely to this navi (prophet) - I call him a navi (prophet), even though he is not named as such, because clearly the gift was in him and he walked to a large extent in the footsteps of Moses. As a type of the whole of Ephraim, being himself an Ephraimate, the tribe called to lead Messianic Israel, we have important lessons to learn from him. He led an invasion and a colonisation just as another end-time Joshua (whose name is the same as that of the Messiah - Yehoshua, Yah'shua) will do the same as he elads a twelve-tribed confederation back, first, to the area where ISIS is presently in control in northern Syria and Iraq, and thence south-west to the Promised Land itself so that kol Yisra'el (all of Israel) is ready to welcome the returning Messiah.
Be Strong and Brave
As you read that revelation at the begining of the book named after him, you see three admonitions from Yahweh. First He says, "Be strong and brave" (Josh.1:6, New International Reader's Version - NIRV) and then, "Be strong and very brave" (v.7, NIRV). Finally, again, He says, "Be strong and brave, Do not be terrified. Do not lose tiqveh (hope). I am Yahweh your Elohim (God). I will be with you everywhere you go" (v.9, NIRV). And there the revelation to the navi (prophet) ended.
The last generation will receive similar instructions from a latter-day Joshua, you may be absolutely assured of, but in the meantime we have our dress-rehearsal. So the admonition is for us too and for the tasks ahead. We all have to be toughened up as that second generation was, as I said yesterday, but we will never have the strength and bravery needed for the tasks ahead if we don't learn total obedience. We start by learning that lesson at home - children obeying their parents, wives their husbands, and husbands the directives given by Yah'shua (Jesus), yes, even to get up when we feel we need that extra sleep. I share what happened to me as a warning.
Remembering the Predecessor's Revelation
Joshua's first directive to the people was an example of his submission, obedience and committment to what had been revealed before to his predecessor, "Remember what Moses, the servant of Yahweh, commanded you" (v.12, NIRV).
The Twelve Tribal Witnesses Shoulder Boulders
The Book of Joshua does not record the revelation Joshua received about the Jordan crossing .- only the orders and event are recorded (Josh.3:1-17). Only after that do we hear Yahweh speaking verbatim to Joshua again ordering him to get the one representative from each of the 12 tribes to collect 12 large rocks from the middle of the Jordan River while it was yet supernaturallty rendered dry, and erect a memorial on the other side. Yahweh even told them how to carry their stone, "You must carry it on your shoulder" (4:5b, NIRV). Have you ever wondered why? The shoulder represents all power because the body "pushe[s] with side and shoulder" (Ezek 34:21, NKJV), unity as we "serve Him shoulder to shoulder" (Zeph.3:9, NASU) and the burden of responsibility and authority - "the government will be upon His shoulder" (Isa.9:6, NKJV). When something like these testimonial boulders were put on the shoulders of these 12 men they were preserving in a state of good and emet (truth) their witness for ever.
The End-Time Witnesses
This is why I was led to ask the witnesses to the Great 2015 Dedication to send in their testimonies. Each testimony is a stone that must be heaped together as a memorial as a witness the last generation:
The Twelve Dedication Testimonies
"The stones will remind the Israelites of what happened there" (v.5c, NIRV).
So far 10 testimonies have been sent in. There are 2 others who have not yet born witness and it may well be that they will do so this Late Pesach (Passover) Season. Until the 12 witnesses, each representing one of the tribes, have born testimony, we cannot go further. We have to follow the divine tavnith (pattern), we have to be obedient. Then we shall publish the Twelve Testimonies together. Then we will have heaped the stones together as those Israelites under Joshua did. I do not know who these two witnesses are, neither must we speculat, but they will come forward.
To Whom Much is Given
We all want miracles. I want to be healed, I want the strength of Caleb so I can energetically throw my total energy into this work in the remaining years I have yet. You - all of you - have your desires for service too and the Covenant of Wonders (Marvels, Miracles) to be active in your life. But be sure that you want this for thr right reasons for, as I have said so many times now:
Respond Immediately Without Hesitation
"For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more" (Luke 12:48, NKJV).
You should afterwards re-read the parable Yah'shua (Jesus) spoke before He uttered those words. It starts thus:
Consistency and Constancy
"Let your waist be girded and your lamps burning; and you yourselves be like men who wait for their master, when he will return from the wedding, that when he comes and knocks they may open to him immediately. Blessed are those servants whom the master, when he comes, will find watching" (Luke 12:35-37, NKJV).
Please notice the word "immediately" - when Yah'shua (Jesus) "knocks" and calls you to do something, He wants an immediate response. He wants us watching, ready to hear His least Davar (Word) to us. That means diligence in your discipleship - He doesn't want souls fitful in their responses. He wants consistency and constancy.
Awaiting the Parting of the Jordan
Brethren, we're still at the Jordan River. We're still waiting for the actions and/or testimonies of the two remaining witnesses. The miracle of the Jordan River is still happening. I suspect one of the reasons we have been commanded to observe a Late Pesach (Passover) is an act of grace on Yahweh's part toward us so that we can finally get our act together. And I am not just pointing a finger at the last two witnesses who I suspect are from, or repesent, the tribes Judah and Benjamin.
When Our Children Ask Us We Must Testify to Them
We have to be able to tell our children, with one twelve-fold voice:
Reversal of Seas
"In days to come, your children (of the next generation) will ask their parents, 'What do these stones (testimonies) mean (what happened?)?' Their parents must tell them, 'Israel went across the Jordan River on dry ground (He send an unmerited Anointing as a deposit for greater things to come)'. Yahweh your Elohim (God) dried up the Jordan for you until you had gone across it. He did to the Jordan River the same thing He had done to the Red Sea (Yam Suf, Sea of Reeds). He dried up the Red Sea ahead of us until we had gone across it. He did so that all the nations on earth would know that He is powerful. He did it so that you would always have respect from Yahweh your Elohim (God)" (Josh.4:21-24, NIRV).
But for the last generation, the reverse will happen. The Red (Reeds) Sea came first and the River Jordan came after for those ancient Israelites. For you of the last generation the Jordan River comes first, for my generation, and then comes your own 'Red Sea' - not one 'Red Sea' but lots of them as the Twelve Tribes assemble from across the whole world and the Covenant of Wonders is activated for them in a way that will make the miracles experienced by those ancient sons of Jacob seem paltry by comparison.
This disobedient servant is now very tired indeed and must stop. But this message I am led to give you, with all the attendant warnings and reminders of the huge blessings that will accrue to our children if we do what is right, must be given. Those children are still being born and are yet to be born - we have much to do to prepare them, keeping them untainted from the world. More tomorrow. May the Name of Yahweh be praised and glory given to His Son - may He receive the reward of His suffering. Amen.
Continued in Part 25