Now I have to travel backwards to times past during my first year in L.I.F.E. Bible College as a freshman. These are things written in the eternal books of the things of God. HIS History: of events in another realm. That glorious day will never be forgotten.
One of my teachers in Bible College was Rev. Hackett. The class was on the Pentateuch, which are the first five books of Moses. These first five books of the Bible are so unbelievably rich concerning the precious things of Jesus Christ that the world could not contain a complete explanation of the aspects of His Person and His work therein. Of the revelations of Christ in the Pentateuch, none is greater than the tabernacle in the wilderness. The blueprint concerning the building of this tabernacle was given to Moses in Mount Sinai during a forty day fast. At that time he was so caught up into fellowship with the Blessed One that he neither ate nor drank for all forty days! At the close of that time the LORD spoke unto Moses and said; "See that you do all things according to the pattern which was shown to you on the mount."
Here we see that it took Moses 40 days and nights in which he did not even have time to eat or drink in order to receive: #1. The law, which is a figure of Christ's excellence. #2. The building plan for the Tabernacle: which is a type of Christ built together with us the living boards as His dwelling place and Body and #3. The ordaining and service of the priests, which represents our accessing God and service between Him and man as a holy priesthood in the New Testament which is the inheritance of all His holy ones, which are all Christians in every age.
Now if it took Moses that long just to receive the revelation of just types and shadows of the things of God, the things of Jesus Christ and the building up of the ecclesia which is His Body the fullness of Him which fills all in all, then how long should it take a man or woman of God today to receive before God a revelation of reality from which the types and shadows were only a representation??? This question has GOT to be asked! This leads to an even more important question and that is this: Is there anyone really truly qualified to be in the service of Christ today???? I would say hardly not! Now I wish to thank God for the men and women of God who serve Him night and day on the mission field and those through whom we have come to be born again and start our new lives in Christ but ����
I FEEL LIKE A PRESSURE COOKER INSIDE ME IS ABOUT TO EXPLODE!!!!!!!!!!!! Most
of the so-called men of God
(wait a minute! Aren't ALL who are born again of God? Why do we think that guys who stand on a platform above the rest of us are above their brethren and have some special power conferred on them as "men of God?" Is it cause they wear a coat and tie?) we have today have never even known what it even means
to be qualified for the service of the Lord Jesus Christ!!! Some of them are still babes in Christ! Some of them have grown a little more spiritually than the next Joe and are brats in Christ (please excuse such a term as that immature part of them is surely not from the new creation but rather the old). But did not Paul say the same thing to the Corinthians? It took God 40 days to give Moses just a type of the spiritual things and that was after 80 years
of prior preparation of this vessel of mercy! It took the Lord Jesus 3 1/2 years to prepare the 12 and still they were not enough for the revelation of the New Testament. After the training of the twelve by the incarnated Son of the Most High in His flesh here was still the necessity felt in the Godhead to pick and train one: Saul of Tarsus and make him a Paul, a sent one, a pattern to all that believe by taking him aside into the deserts of Arabia for 3 years under the tutorship of the crucified, risen and ascended Christ in order to complete the revelation of the New Testament! He was the one who wrote half the New Testament. We have the same Christ today! BUT
��.. we don't think we have to relate to Him in the same way. 3 1/2 years = 20,000 hours in the presence of the living God!! Wow! 3 years = about 17143 hours in the presence of the same God except now He has been exalted to the right hand of God which is where Paul said he had a chance to visit once or twice, literally. NOW. You find me man today who has spent that long in the presence of the Lord and I'll listen to him!
What about me? I cannot pretend to EVEN have spent that long in His presence if you combine my over 120 days of fasting and whole nights of prayer etc. It is necessary for a man to literally live in the presence of Christ and then like Peter in his 3 x denial the man must still be tested and found to be a humiliating failure!! Maybe Gene Edwards is such a person who has spent that long a time in the presence of Christ. I have found myself listening to that man. Hmmmm��.
If we take some time to look at the shadow of Jesus Christ and His Body that is seen in the Tabernacle in the wilderness revealed in the book of Exodus. This part of scripture gives us a tiny view as to the magnitude of what the revelations of the Reality of the things of God truly are.
A page of the textbook of the Pentateuch class first opened these things to me in 1975. There is a list of materials that the children of Israel were to bring in Exodus 25, the first part of the chapter: gold, silver, brass, blue purple, scarlet, fine linen, goats hair, Ram's skins dyed red, seal skins, acacia wood, oil for the light, spices for the anointing oil, spices for incense and finally onyx stones.
Notice that these things were a free-will offering of God's people. However, though they are material things that were offered, all these things are representatives of various aspects and relations of Christ and His unsearchable riches in relationship not only to us but to God the Father.
The following are the meanings of most of these things as proposed by the textbook given me in Bible school and most of these allegoric interpretations and denotations are commonly accepted and agreed upon by most but not all Bible scholars. These concepts have been arrived at mostly by comparing scripture with scripture throughout the Bible and finding that there are similarities of interpretations through scripture especially as you compare scripture with scripture.
1. Gold - Commonly held to denote in all Biblical passages the divine nature of God. The New Jerusalem is built with gold more than any other single element. We must be built up with His divine life and divine nature.
2. Silver - Used to buy back slaves. The meaning commonly accepted is Redemption. We were redeemed with quite a price from our slavery.
3. Brass - Judgement. There is almost no argument on this point amongst scholars. The sacrificial altar was built with brass and so were many other items of tearing, securing, binding, gathering the blood and etc.
4. Blue - Heavenly. This relates to Christ's heavenly glory.
5. Purple - Royalty: Christ's Kingship, Headship, Lordship and authority.
6. Scarlet - Denoting the blood of Christ in its various power and aspects toward God and man.
7. Fine linen - Fine twined linen denotes the purity and righteous nature of Christ and finely woven and innate intimately.
8. Goat's Hair - something of the outward ordinariness of the man Jesus within which was hidden the glories of the eternal. Isaiah says "He was as a root out of dry ground" and "there was no beauty that we should desire Him."
9. Ram's Skins Dyed Red - This is the covering before God of the justifying, cleansing and sanctifying blood of the Lamb by which we can enter the Dwelling Place of God and abide in his tabernacles under the shadow of the Almighty! Without the blood of Jesus, truly there is nothing! This would also have further meaning if we consider the story of how God shed the first blood sacrifice to cover Adam and Eve in the garden with God's righteousness or a symbol thereof.
10. Sealskins - This covering will keep out damaging worldly elements. (Rain, snow, burning sun � etc. Surely this is a function of dwelling in the true building up together of God's holy ones! Another function is that it will keep the warmth in.
11. Acacia wood - this is a high and hardened, upgraded wood. In other words it is the humanity in the new creation. It is Christ's humanity in us making us all part of the one new man: "for as in Adam all die but in Christ shall we be made alive" Praise the Lord this making alive has already begun with in us and is proceeding on!
12. Oil for the Light - There seems to be no argument here at all. Oil is universally considered to mean the Holy Spirit and even several scriptures actually tell the very same. The light refered to here, of course is the Lampstand. In Zechariah it is referred to as the Spirit, having One base but seven branches or lights. In Revelation of course there are the Seven Spirits of God but of course we could spend forever on that subject!
13. Spices For The Anointing Oil : These spices come from various plants mentioned in other parts of the Pentateuch and are types of various aspects of the riches and graces of our Lord's death and resurrection. This has to do with the Lord's work through His resurrection and ascension to work Himself into us empower us and bear fruit through us.
14. Spices for Incense: This is also the same oil but different spices for living not empowering and is toward God instead of toward man. This has to do with the processing of these aspects of His death-resurrection mid-process to process us into His image and likeness. This of course is for a fragrance towards God and contributes to intercession.
15. Onyx Stones: To be placed upon the breastplate of the high priest. Stones signify us as offspring of His life and constituents of the organism of the processed Triune God for His expression that He may be glorified. (It's all in I Peter ch. 2.) We don't metamorphosize from dust of the ground into transformed living precious stones over night. Consider petrified wood and consider how it gets the way it gets.
On that one glorious day I shall never forget I was considering this list of meanings from the textbook and decided to re-read Exodus 25,26 and 27 once again with these things in mind. I had read these same chapters before as I thought a Christian should read the whole Bible (yeah, right! Maybe ten years later). But, of course without the main keys which I have just given you, it would be impossible to get a clue as to what it might mean and as a result is exceedingly boring and will put you to sleep. But this time as I started to read, I noticed that these materials I had just studied about were unveiling things about Christ to me I had never known. I noticed that the arc inside the holy of holies was Christ as it was made of acacia wood and so there was the human but was inlaid and overlaid with gold which was the divine nature. As I got into the combinations of the materials together on the furnishings and the boards, entrances and other components of this dwelling place of God, the peace of God deep within me seemed to flow out like a gentle river. Soon I was engulfed in the presence of the Lord of hosts and that was but the beginning of things to come that most glorious day! Soon as I read the peaceful flowing within me also had a warmth and glow and the tears started to come to my eyes. The flowing within was distinctly golden like an endless golden cloud of glory. Except now I can no longer describe in the human language what this glory was like. Mere human words cannot convey even 1% of how wonderful our Lord Christ is. This golden cloud was of the inner nature and unlimited aspects and details of the Divine Being and contained insights beyond the mere thoughts or words of mortal finite man.
Now as I began to read the words on the pages of these Old Testament scriptures became like flames of fire burning into my soul. There was more revelation of the New Testament revealed by these 3 OT chapters to my inner man in those four hours than I had ever seen in my whole life of reading the NT before. During those four hours I could sit up and read, yes, but other than that I could not move due to the fact that the power of God had me pinned to the chair where I was sitting.
I began to discover, like David, "that a day in Thy courts is better than a thousand" YES!!! Better than a thousand days anywhere else! I discovered in those hours that there was such a thing inside our Lord's being as "the tabernacles of God" as I seemed to be entering into golden courts of our Lord deeper and deeper into more glorious palaces and inner rooms of his Being and grace. In such times of course we are tempted to cry out as Peter did on the mount "Lord its good for us to be here. Let us make three tabernacles." But let us remember, beloved, that God has also ordained the dry times and the deserts and that real growth is wrought far more in those times than in the mountain tops. Let us remember that though Paul spent three days in both Paradise and the 3rd heavens that most of the three years of his aloneness with the Lord was in the desert and it was there he lived out Romans 7 and Romans 8.
Along with the experience of this golden flowing warmth of this golden cloud flowing within were some elements I will dare to speak of as the Spirit permits. The fine twined linen, heavenly blue, redemptive scarlet and royal purple of which Moses wrote are dim shadows and I was allowed to see into their realities. There is a beauty in the Being and glory of our Lord that we can only try to describe and somehow point others toward hoping the Lord would reveal just an inch of it to them! For if He would they would give up the world in an instant so glorious is He! But alas, there was a darkness to everything I saw as in this age we are only allowed to see through a glass darkly and not yet face to face.
It was after about two hours in His courts that I began to notice that the boards built together in the tabernacle represented you and me! These boards were covered on both sides with gold corresponding to the only piece of furniture in the Tabernacle overlaid with gold both within and without and that was the arc of the covenant which is THE highest picture of Christ Himself as experienced in the holy of holies. It is this experience that will cause us to be built up into the Head of the ecclesia in ALL things that He might fill all in all and eventually Head up all of creation through us and so consummate the ages and fulfill the eternal purpose according to His heart's desire (which is His dear sweet lovely Bride of course!!). It was because the boards were overlaid on both sides that they could have golden rings attached also through which the long rod of gold (signifying the Spirit Who joins us as one) not only joined but aligned the boards with one another so God could have a Dwelling Place on this earth. When Moses finished the Tabernacle exactly according (and you didn't think exactly was very important!!) to the blueprint given to him on the mount, then we see in Exodus 40 that the glory of God so filled the tabernacle that not even the priests could enter to minister (and you thought your ministry was so important!!!). This shows us that that which is flesh must be crossed out at the altar before the entrance and building up into the tabernacle of God is gained.
It was at this point after about two hours that I realized that not only Christ is this resurrected and exalted humanity mingled with the divine nature but also WE constitute (eventually sooner or later) both the acacia wood and the gold and are built together with Jesus Christ in us and us in Him and in His Father together! THIS is the house of God! Then it was that the scripture from Ephesians chapter II was revealed to me as never before:
"20. being built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the chief corner stone;
21. in whom each several building, fitly framed together, groweth into a holy temple in the Lord;
22. in whom ye also are builded together for a habitation of God in the Spirit."
At this point the Holy Spirit Who had brought me into the courts and tabernacles of the Most High, the Lord of hosts, now began to work mightily within me and brought me into a massively expansive and awesome tabernacle and this time I would have to say the most sacred Temple of all comprising literally millions of the regenerated saints of God taken from the blood of many many nations, languages, races and ages past, present and future and it is impossible to describe but they were all glorified. I was part also of this vast Habitat of the Lord of hosts which seemed like a huge sphere or ball, the believers being the outer walls of this ball and there being a HUGE ball in the middle: that being Christ. He was our Center and we were all looking towards Him in utter adoration and praise!!! Needless to say the tears just flowed profusely at this point and I was caught up into an ecstasy. From this Ball or Center flowed out like a huge river (that nevertheless could still not be seen but only experienced) this golden glory and unsearchable riches of His Life and Nature and Person and work and silver and gold and purple and scarlet and blue and--- well I think you get it. As we received this river with literally millions to infinitude of His unsearchable riches - it flowed out and through (to one another even!)all of us like this huge and awesome slow moving Ocean which we then returned to this Wonderful Christ, Who is the Center and Circumference of all things! How? We returned it to Him by praise and the more we praised the more this Ocean flowed back to us and we soaked up more and more of the elements of these riches again and again and again! Oh the billows of peace and joy. At this point a most awesome experience was mine. I literally felt that these saints were ALREADY ONE!!!!!!! RIGHT NOW!!!!!! Even though they were glorified as I saw them I literally felt a great oneness with all the believers in heaven AND on earth!!!!!! It was this golden glory that made us one and it is already a fact, brother! And you can bank on it! The revelation I received but not totally at that time of course was that all that I had seen there is already true in Christ and if we were to more diligently seek after the Lord to draw near to Him close to Him and eventually ascertain and live within a our already possessed oneness with Him then we could surely have a foretaste of these powers of the world to come even in this present evil age! Now �.. does that sound too good to be true? Well, praise the LORD that is part of the good news of Jesus Christ: that the kingdom of God is already within us even right now!!! Hallelujah!! Make it known to every tribe, nation kindred and tongue!!
There's still more! After sitting under the teaching of Witness Lee, who's undoubtedly received more revelation of these things than I have, I saw by God's grace that that great temple which (or whom!) I had seen was actually the same that the apostle John had seen at the isle of Patmos! I had seen the New Jerusalem. This explains the slow moving River in a circumference around all the saints of all places and times, Jews and Gentiles. Witness Lee has one book with literally 19 chapters on the New Jerusalem which is NOT a material place but is US!!! It is US!!!! It is actually a she!!! And she is a real person OUT OF THE SIDE OF THE LAMB OF CALVARY!! She will be His perfect mate!! Hallelujah! More on the New Jerusalem later.
You would think all of that is enough, right? After four hours I was finally able to get up out of my chair. I stumbled like one drunk with new wine across the room and collapsed into an big easy chair. There the Lord's power was even more marked upon me. I was literally pinned to that chair as if clamped down by 2" thick steal and could hardly even move! I did not know that I could be drawn even closer to the Lord than I had already been but it seemed now that there was no end to how close you can get to Him. However!!!!! There are conditions! And there is a price to pay. I was brought nearer and nearer to the One Who sits upon the throne Who is the mysterious Center, Who dwells in immortality and light into which no man can ever enter or ever will. BUT, there is, I learned that day, a closeness to God to which I still have not yet attained. I was brought so near to Him Who is the Reality of all things that I began to tremble then I began to shake, then I perceived that there was still a sort of veil betwixt myself and THAT glory!! Alas! I was not allowed to enter. I could not, but I perceived what was within that veil: FIRE!!!! The kind of fire that the natural, sinful and fleshly man could not live in... Or even touch lest you die!!! May I get there someday! St. John of the Cross called it the dark night of the soul which proceeds final union with God. But of course that is beyond the scope of this book.
Perhaps what this book deals with is not a greater revelation than the things I have just shared with you but it is more important. The goal or end toward which we all must press is relevant as a motivation towards the goal but it is not very relevant, practically speaking without the means to get there. The revelation of the keys is a revelation of the means to the end and without means the real end is not really in sight.