Regret won’t be able to be there but this reminder says few places still available.
The inspirational messages delivered by Paul Keith Davis and Ian Clayton at last year’s Days of Wonder in Cardiff were outlined in Days of Wonder…, Nuggets from… and Follow-on…Getting closer to God. So I can strongly recommend listening to a podcast of Paul Keith’s second session that’s now freely available.
Company of Burning Hearts has recently opened a new web store and its co-founder Justin Abraham announces,
“We’re excited about releasing this NEW series of teachings on our web-store. To celebrate we’re giving away a FREE session from Days of Wonder 2014 featuring Paul Keith Davis. If you don’t know Paul Keith, he is a huge inspiration and one of the pacesetter prophets of our generation….”
To continue reading click NEW Podcast LIVE for link to free podcast and to register for Days of Wonder 2015.
For a flavour of this event see my account of Days of Wonder 2014…
The prophet Habakkuk had a burden and complained of current events to the Lord, who answered him at Hab 1. The prophet asked another question and wrote:
I will stand my watch
And set myself on the rampart,
And watch to see what He will say to me,
And what I will answer when I am corrected.
2 Then the Lord answered me and said:
“Write the vision
And make it plain on tablets,
That he may run who reads it.
3 For the vision is yet for an appointed time;
But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie.
Though it tarries, wait for it;
Because it will surely come,
It will not tarry…” (Habakkuk 2:2-3 NKJV)
New Year’s Day 2015 brought an insight that confirmed my extending and splitting this post in two – one part for the Old Year, this for the New Year – was indeed correct.
During December, however, my intention had been to share thoughts on the Incarnation and In the Beginning. But it wasn’t to be. Events in the USA on that first weekend were still simmering in my mind. Let’s recap briefly:
In Holy lightning beyond ‘The Pond’… I reported what happened upon hearing Lindell Cooley leading worship at the first Sunday morning service for Church of His Presence (CHP). They’d just moved into a brand-new building near Daphne, Alabama (location).
Then, the first part of this post referred to two prophecies which accurately foretold the Brownsville and Bay of the Holy Spirit Revivals, also to inspired remarks before that church’s move out of Mobile Convention Centre.
That first part also gave an introduction to revival, but some readers may think America is long overdue for divine judgement. This is a deep topic which I cannot hope to cover in a short blog. My present purpose is to make some observations only. Many teachers and commentators in the US regularly refer to it; eg. Anne Graham-Lotz, John McTernan and William Koenig to name a few, and with whom I’m familiar.
In his book As America Has Done To Israel, John McTernan tells how his grandfather’s account of how a large enclave of the German-American Alliance on Long Island was devastated by the Great Hurricane of 1938, just days after the largest Nazi rally outside Europe. This gave him an understanding of how dealing with Israel in an un-Godly way brings catastrophic consequences, usually within days. His blog continues to cover this in-depth and often refers to his expectation of a much greater judgement coming to the USA.
In What Time Is It? the guest preacher at CHP, Dotty Schmitt, gave a superb message on prophecy on 16 May last. She spoke about the modern Sons of Issachar being able to discern the times and what’s happening in the heavenlies. A ‘new sound’, she said, is coming from every nation and she learned from Scotland what God is doing in this new season of revival. God is telling us to “Wake up to what is happening in the earth!” and to be saturated in His Word.
What caught my attention was her reference to what I’d already devoted many posts to: an ‘invisible jigsaw’. She told about waiting in God’s presence and having a vision of a big picture puzzle and seeing different pieces – very like my post of 20 March. The Lord explained it to her,
“You have begun to see how the End-times pieces of Biblical prophecy, history, current events, various situations, are fitting together – and it’s opened up within you a River of Life.”
(Proverbs 16:22 ‘In understanding there’s a fountain of life’.)
She asked the Lord, “How does it all fit together?” and Luke 24 spoke to her: “Jesus opened their minds to understand the scriptures and said ‘Now wait until you are endued with power from on high’.”
One sign of the End-times is deception, which has moved across the land and caused the nation to make wrong choices and decisions that have opened a door to the enemy and will bring troubles. Dotty quoted Anne Graham-Lotz’s remark at the National Day of Prayer that all the warning bells are going off.
Like McTernan, accredited Christian journalist at The White House, William Koenig, has kept close tabs on the events that bring about judgment upon a nation. The ones that have definitely been triggered are all those relating to the treatment of Israel. His Inside the White House report of 26 December categorises ‘evil endorsed from the highest political office in the land’ but expresses candid surprise as follows:
- The only surprising thing to me has been the delay in the consequences — but when they do happen, they will be even more earth-shaking. (Emphasis RB)
Perhaps that delay may be explained by what’s in the Lord’s pipeline for America? So let’s check out another prophecy for America by re-visiting the Brownsville Revival:
Toronto and Pensacola
As the Friday and Saturday meetings of CHP’s dedication weekend 5-7 December were in the evenings we had to wait for them to be archived before watching. (As mentioned above, we saw Sunday’s live ahead of those preceding meetings.) The speaker for the second evening was, most unusually!, unable to attend at the last minute and so pastor Rev John Kilpatrick had only the afternoon to prepare a message.
Nevertheless, the Lord gave John a download about how culture gets changed for good or evil. So he opened his message on ‘Power Shifters’ by referring to the undesirable effects of ungodly cultural attitudes upon society, eg. the establishment of casinos by criminals, introduction of immorality and rebellion at the Woodstock festivals, as well as Martin Luther King’s godly campaign against racial segregation. All provoked or enabled demonic principalities to react and even manifest in those areas.
After that background, John told of his deep desire in the 1980s for revival and starting prayers for the Lord to send one to the Assemblies of God church he led in Brownsville, Pensacola, in the panhandle of Florida. Intercessors prayed yet, as demonic opposition was reacting, people in church and the media turned against plans for revival.
This pastor spoke in-depth on those days and how the Lord answered their prayers 20 years ago, for the Lord had told him in 1986,
“Son, the heavens are clouding over from New Orleans to this way…towards Pensacola.” He said, “The heavens are brassing over. Disobedience and rebellion is causing the heavens that were once yielding to begin to brass over.
“If you preach what I give you and you will preach it unafraid, and un-intimidated on television, I will hold that brass heaven back and I will open the heavens from the I10 (Interstate 10) all along this Gulf coast.”
In about 1993 the Lord reminded John of those words and said,
“I’m about to open the heavens over Pensacola. I’m about to pour out My Spirit in this place, but first you must make it a house of prayer.”
He recounted the difficulty experienced introducing a new way of praying and the need for prayer warfare because of spiritual opposition. They included communion and kept going for over two years. Consequently, the church grew by over 20%. Eventually he and Lindell Cooley began to sense a quickening in their bodies and spirit.
His wife Brenda went to check out a revival and very different way of conducting church at the end of a runway of Pearson International Airport in Toronto, Canada. On January 20th 1994 a Vineyard preacher named Randy Clark, who’d been invited by pastor John Arnott, delivered a message and invited folk forward fro prayer. But the Lord made His presence felt in the house and disrupted the scheduled programme! So the preacher had to stay on for several weeks. Daily services were convened and the presence of the Lord remained for over 10 years.
News spread rapidly world-wide of what became known as The Toronto Blessing, which was principally marked by believers being filled with, and even overwhelmed by, the joy of the Holy Spirit. It was so strong that most would appear ‘drunk’ in deep merriment. Coming from God, however, this ‘supernatural drink’ has no ‘toxic limit’ and is free from any hangover effects!
When Brenda Kilpatrick went there she stood in the sanctuary for prayer. The Toronto Airport Church Fellowship’s way of ministering prayer to hundreds of people was for them to stand on lines several feet apart as many would fall down as though ‘slain’ as the Holy Spirit came upon them when the ministry team worked their way along them. (In my case I ‘sparked’ well beforehand!) A lady approached Brenda and John tells what happened next:
“Before she could lay a hand on her, fhfhfhfhfhhh, it was like a torch was lit over her head and fire came down over her head, her ears, down to her collar-bone and worked its way back up”.
This was in the first years of The Toronto Blessing and before the repentance revival was to break out in a Brownsville church on Father’s Day 1995. Brenda was powerfully set on fire by Holy Spirit in Toronto and John described the radical, joyous effect of the Lord’s presence that he noticed upon her return.
“When I saw her, her face glowed like an angel, her hair glistened like gold and silver, and I ran to her and said, “Brenda, what’s happened to you?” And she said, “I’ve been with the Lord!”
At a prayer meeting led by Brenda upon her return, a lady who rarely spoke told John that, whilst in Seattle, she’d heard about a prophetic word from a visiting pastor from South Korea. John told the gathering what she’d said to him,
“I was in a meeting where Dr Yonggi Cho was and he told of when he was in a hotel room in Seattle getting ready to preach that night. He then asked the Lord if He’s reserved America for judgment or, “Are You going to pour out Your Spirit on America?” and the Lord said,
“I’m not going to judge, I’m not going to bring My judgment on America – I’m going to pour out My Spirit. Get your atlas out of your attaché case!”
“He opened up the atlas and opened up the map of the United States and the Holy Spirit said, “Point!” His finger landed right on the dot for Pensacola, and the Holy Spirit said to Dr Cho,
“I’m going to pour out My Spirit first in Pensacola – it will burn like a match-head, fiery, there and it will go west along the I10 to the Mississippi river, (which the Spanish called the ‘River of The Holy Spirit’). Then it will back up along the Gulf coast, go down the peninsular of Florida, go up the Eastern seaboard and come down into the Mid-West and South-West and shoot out through the North-West; and before My Coming ALL of America will be ablaze with The glory of God!”
John says that night the Spirit of God fell upon the leaders of that Pensacola church and he saw God do great things. John attested that his dear wife was obviously instrumental in bringing this about.
“I didn’t know how close we were to Revival but God sent us Steve Hill, a passionate revivalist, a simple evangelist with a simple message – like Reinhard [as last night]…
“I said all that about [ungodly/demonic areas] for one reason. There’s a lot of places in America that you can go back to and test the DNA of certain cities, and test the DNA of certain places, and there’s things there that remain to this day after decades – sometimes 100s of years – but what happened on Father’s Day of 1995 <clap!> (John clapped his hands loudly)…a SHIFT happened…in America. Things shifted.
“Steve Hill was ‘the match’ – ‘the fumes’ were in the room because we’d prayed for two and a half years – ‘fumes’ were in the room – Steve Hill was ‘the match’ <CLAP>, Lindell Cooley was ‘the psalmist’, I was the pastor that had ‘headship’ over it all.
“God put together a pastor, an evangelist and a psalmist together …and Revival broke out! And things shifted in America and the religious world, it changed denominations, it changed Pensacola, it changed the whole Gulf coast – and that’s what we’re all doing here tonight!…Things shifted – God used one man, Steve Hill, to shift things.”
Furthermore, pastor Kilpatrick referred to a much older prophetic word from the historic Pentecostal Revival over 100 years ago:
“There was a prophecy in California years ago that God was going to pour out His Spirit at Azuza Street, and the Lord said it will start at Azuza Street and wind up at Zee Street on the East coast…and Brownsville was located at Desoto and Zee Street (Pensacola).
“So God used one man – Steve Hill – as a power shifter and things changed…When Lindell came before the Revival broke out you could feel right at the end of praise and prayer you could feel the atmosphere thinning out and every Sunday another layer could be peeled off like an onion – it even began to feel like there was no ceiling over .. you could literally feel the heavens opening over Brownsville…I promise you that is the truth…and on Father’s Day <CLAP> the match was lit and it was like there was no roof at all and the heavens opened!”
John then quoted the vision of the river from the Throne of God seen by Ezekiel, about which I’d been struck when someone spoke on 9th November about the church’s return to Daphne (as in part 1):
“Let me tell you where I think we’re heading – into waters over our head! I believe it…This place isn’t going to bring Revival, it’s going to be a place where God’s going to send revival”. He went on to speak quietly about what he believes is going to happen in Alabama.
The Gulf coast
Nina briefly popped out of the room but upon return she was hit by another ‘holy lightning bolt’ because what John was saying. She had to lean against the wall and transfixed there as a surge Holy Spirit’s power went right through her, as with Lindell Cooley’s praise song “We Will Ride”.
This is what John was saying,
“I believe there’s going to come a powerful shift that will begin in Alabama, and the shift that takes place here (CHP’s location) – among other places – is going to begin to shift this nation back to where it should be – amen!
“Now don’t make this mistake – don’t make this mistake, don’t make the mistake that whatever God does next He’s done before, because it’s not!
“There’s a new sound that’s coming! There’s a new level of worship that’s coming! There’s a new level of revelation preaching that’s coming!
“AND there’s a NEW LEVEL and a NEW BREED of Millennials that God is raising up and what Martin Luther King was to the movement that helped bring the blacks to emancipation, what Abraham Lincoln was to the Emancipation Proclamation. God’s about to touch some Millennials that are prophetic, they’re evangelistic, they’re anointed – and there’s a vacuum – they’re going to rise up under a fresh anointing and God’s going to use them in a POWERFUL WAY – and don’t you doubt it!…
“The Bible plainly says that in the Last Days, “I shall pour out My Spirit on all flesh, on all your sons and all your daughters (etc)…As we know things tonight you may think you know who God’s going to raise up and touch and how things are going to be, but I tell you, you’re going to be totally surprised by what the Lord’s going to do! It’s going to catch you off-guard because you’re going to be thinking and looking in one direction and God’s going to come around from another direction and catch you.
“So be open to whatever God’s doing…you know I’m so excited about the possibility of God beginning to pour out His glory in these Last Days that I’m looking for it appearing as an actual, visible sign, just like He did for Israel in the wilderness of a pillar of fire by night and a pillar of cloud by day. The Bible says that in the last days the knowledge of the glory of the Lord will cover the earth as the waters cover the sea.
“You’re going to begin to see signs of the glory of the Lord that will confound the nations!…And the glory of the Lord shall be for your defence…
“Here’s what I’m saying to you as a mouthpiece tonight of the Lord, I’m saying this prophetically to you: even in America to those churches that will turn to God with all their heart, God’s about to give them a revelation of the glory of God where protection will be so powerful (detailed promises to those assembled)…the glory of the Lord is going to be our rear-guard…”.
Thus we may soon see a fresh move of revival in the USA, as prophesied not only by Bob Jones, Paul Keith Davis and Dr Paul Yonggi Cho but also by an intercessor for America, Dutch Sheets (at 2 below).
It is particularly noteworthy that the Lord has graciously used John Kilpatrick to host two revivals, so he has a good track record as a leading revivalist. No doubt he’s also well aware of Steve Hill’s warnings on the need to deal with these hindrances:
- neglect of God’s work of atonement
- daily denial of God’s presence in our lives.
Pastor Kilpatrick’s first series of teaching in the new building is based upon the radical revelation Jesus gave his first disciples – that God is ‘Father’. So John is teaching about and ministering into effects of dysfunctional fathering upon believers. This will enable them to come closer to heavenly Father and move fully into their adoption as children of God.
One of the enduring and renowned benefits of the Toronto outpouring over its several years is a better understanding within the Body of Christ of the Father Heart of God. So John Arnott refers to that revival as ‘The Fathers Blessing’. [See my wife’s account of how she no longer remained officially registered as ‘permanently disabled” when John visited Bath and decided not to preach after hearing the Lord say He wanted to heal.]
Could it be that a repetition of such deeply practical teaching will be foundational for a full revival to re-visit the USA and thus be far more empowered than previously?
I pray so…
CONTINUE reading at next post, A couple of visions about Revival in the USA >>
UPDATE 2nd March: see “Revival of Prayer” in Lion Bite: Watchmen Arise!
- CHP’s archived message Power Shifters will prove useful to all students of the history of Revival. Pastor Kilpatrick commences speaking as above at 1:26:00.
- Dutch Sheets (within) 46,000 churches called to prayer for Great Awakening.
- John Peters: ‘Great Revivalists’ (CWR 2008); see brief review here.
- John Peters: ‘The Story of Toronto through the lives of John & Carol Arnott’.
- ‘Puzzle Globe & Book’ by Thanukorn, courtesy Freedigitalphotos.net
In view of its content, it’s right that this two-part post covers the old and new years. Also, two bolts of ‘holy lightning’ struck from ‘across the Pond’ in addition to that posted here. That one was the Holy Spirit’s reaction within Nina upon hearing a song about Jesus Christ’s return to earth in glory. The other ‘strikes’ were interior responses to prophetic words about a coming revival in the USA!
Also as 2014 closes, the nature of my considering Revival in North America takes the year full circle! 2014’s first, personally written post introduced the concept of ‘Bridge Over The Pond’, where Holy Spirit inspires similar teaching in the UK and US churches with which we’re personally associated, followed by several posts on prophesying into Time based upon the previous year’s blogs on the power of prophetic decrees.
More about all that later. First we need to understand the meaning of ‘revival’ other than as personal revival, which is nevertheless of great importance to the individual. It’s not possible to do more than briefly overview this vast subject on a blog, so I quote a couple of sources:
An ‘ancient’ book recommended only this week by a local intercessor directly refers to a historic revival in America. Arthur Wallis opens his 1956 book In The Day of Thy Power by asking ‘What Is Revival?’, from which I extract with emphasis added:
‘True revivals have ever been marked by powerful and often widespread outpourings of the Spirit. Many times the preaching had to cease because the hearers were prostrate, or because the voice of the preacher was drowned by cries for mercy. Who will deny that these were outpourings of the Spirit? …
‘David Brainerd recorded the beginning of the wonderful movement among the American Indians in 1745 thus: “The power of God seemed to descend upon the assembly ‘like a rushing mighty wind’ and with an astonishing energy bore down all before it. I stood amazed at the influence that seized the audience almost universally, and could compare it to nothing more aptly than the irresistible force of a mighty torrent. . . . Almost all persons of all ages were bowed down with concern together, and scarce one was able to withstand the shock of this surprising operation.”
‘Revival can never be explained in terms of activity, organization, meetings, personalities, preachings. These may or may not be involved in the work, but they do not and cannot account for the effects produced. Revival is essentially a manifestation of God; it has the stamp of Deity upon it, which even the unregenerate and uninitiated are quick to recognize. Revival must of necessity make an impact upon the community, and this is one means by which we may distinguish it from the more usual operations of the Holy Spirit…
His next chapters consider the distinctive features of Revival [see link at 1 below]. An up-to-date scholarly analysis and summary of revivals and 25 key revivalists by John Peters offers, from across that spectrum, a succinct definition of the role of revival. In Great Revivalists [at 2] John quotes Dr Wesley Duewels:
“Revival days leave you with a profound realization of God’s greatness and transcendence and of your own unworthiness and dependence upon Him. [In this way] God accomplishes more in hours or days than usually results from years of faithful non-revival ministry. But revival is far more than evangelism. Man can evangelize; only God can give revival.”
Five aspects of the role of revival in particular are mentioned, that revival:
- demonstrates the power of God
- exemplifies the glory of God
- emphasises timeless truths about the Lord Jesus
- acts as a catalyst for the Church and its outreach
- means days of heaven on earth.
Revival prophesied in July 1994
What we heard and learned this month about a coming revival reminded me of what an American teacher-prophet said earlier this year. In blogging about Paul Keith Davis remembers his friend Bob Jones I noted his references to the precision of Bob’s prophetic gifting, in particular:
- Accurate prophecies about two revivals – Pensacola/Brownsville and The Bay of The Holy Spirit – as well as two hurricanes striking the same place (Mobile bay).
By 1994 they’d become friends and decided to convene a prophetic round-table with mutual friend Bobby Conner and others. Sixteen minutes into his eulogy Paul Keith reveals what happened when they all got together:
“In July 1994, I felt comfortable with Bob (ie. his constant anointing) and I said, “Bob, why don’t we have a prophetic round table in my condominium….let’s spend a weekend, a couple of days, seeking the Lord on what He would say?
“What came out of that meeting was to prophesy what became known as ‘The Brownsville Revival’…(he shows a photo taken that day in July 1994 – not this one here)…
“Everyone began to come to the breakfast table and every single person there had a revelation that God was about to pour His Spirit out in Pensacola, Florida – each one had a little different variation but everyone had a part, everyone had a piece of the puzzle that God was about to do something in Pensacola Florida that just wasn’t going to be for Pensacola, it had more far-reaching implications.
“We didn’t call it ‘Brownsville’ because we didn’t know that it was going to be Brownsville – we just said, ‘Pensacola’! And the prophetic word was – and I wrote this on August 1st 1994, months before Brownsville happened on Father’s Day 1995 – but I wrote that:
‘This outpouring would be repentance – an outpouring of repentance – which would lead to righteousness, which would eventually become power-evangelism’…that’s not yet fully accomplished…there were many aspects of that (eg.) we saw a prayer mountain coming to America, this was before we had what was known as ‘harp and bowl’ ministry, before the 24/7 intercession/house of prayer later began to be developed at IHOP in Kansas City, but we prophesied that God wanted to move a prayer mountain to America – it symbolises continual prayer…there was something about a Charles Finney anointing…
“Part of my revelation that morning was, that what was going to be poured out in Pensacola was going to move 50 miles to the west!
“Here I am even before the revival ever started, I was ready to move it to Alabama! – and that’s how far it was over into Mobile Bay!
“And sure enough, that happened some years later. There was a little outpouring of the Spirit called The Bay of The Holy Spirit Revival. John Kilpatrick – the pastor – tells me that one of his members got into his car at the Brownsville parking lot and drove to the parking lot of Daphne civic centre and when he turned into the parking lot it turned over to 50 miles!” So that word came to pass. (Emphases mine)
(A similar significant travelling distance of 212 miles happened regarding my starting this blog and my childhood home’s address.)
The Bay Revival
As a result of a Visitation of the Lord on Father’s Day 2010, Church of His Presence moved meetings from the civic centre in Daphne to the Mobile Convention Centre on the north-western corner of Mobile Bay. That happened on the last day of their Open Heavens Conference and the outpouring became known as The Bay of The Holy Spirit Revival, after the Bay’s original Spanish name 500 years ago (Wikipedia). Many healing miracles with powerful evangelism led to live media coverage and global recognition, as well as its name being shortened to ‘The Bay Revival’.
Meeting for some years in rented premises was very expensive and so Pastor Kilpatrick sought support for moving into new premises and a piece of virgin land was acquired on the eastern side of the bay. Then a new building got erected within a record 8 months!
During one of the last meetings in Mobile, on 9th November, pastor John invited a speaker from the men’s breakfast to greet and briefly address the congregation. It may have seemed like his own opinion but no, for he suddenly spoke under the unction of God and a lightning bolt hit my wife from ‘beyond the Pond’! . That is, Holy Spirit validated the following prophetic words:
“Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty and in this place anything can happen…I’m looking forward to what God is about to do on the eastern shore.
“You know, I believe that we’re about to experience the greatest move of God this area’s ever seen – I really do!
“Brownsville was good, Bay of the Holy Spirit would happen here – but I believe what’s about to take place over there (ie across the bay from Mobile) is going to rock this nation!…
“I challenge the men to get ready.. to be in our place and be prepared for what’s about to take place, to be prepared for what’s about to happen!”
Upon hearing that, it occurred to me that entire bay symbolises a reservoir source to the holy river of God, as seen in a vision by the prophet Ezekiel coming from under His Throne out of the East Gate of the Temple:
Then he brought me back to the door of the temple; and there was water, flowing from under the threshold of the temple toward the east, for the front of the temple faced east; the water was flowing from under the right side of the temple, south of the altar. 2 He brought me out by way of the north gate, and led me around on the outside to the outer gateway that faces east; and there was water, running out on the right side. (Ezekiel 47:1-2 NKJV)
The New Year’s first post considers how this may relate to a fresh revival as well as the matter of divine judgement upon the USA…>> click to continue reading >>
MAY THE LORD BLESS YOU IN EVERY WAY THROUGHOUT 2015
- Arthur Wallis: ‘In The Day of Thy Power’, read brief biography & first 3 chapters here, or ‘look inside’ here.
- John Peters: ‘Great Revivalists’ (CWR 2008); see brief review here, CWR pdf extract ).
- WhiteDove Ministries, Remembering Bob Jones: A Journey in the Supernatural, (from 16:20 minutes)
- Church of His Presence, Leading on Empty Part 1 (from 1:13:00)
- ‘Sphere of Energy’ by Dan, courtesy Freedigitalphotos.net
- ‘Teamwork’ by Franky242, courtesy Freedigitalphotos.net
- ‘Sea’ (cropped) by Salvatore Vuono, courtesy Freedigitalphotos.net
This profoundly important message comes from Mike Parsons. It’s reposted in full rather than re-blogged in order to emphasise its associated prophetic word and append a book cover and make some observations on four consecutive days of God-incidences. Regular readers know my opinion of such events. For Mike’s original posted in August, click on his following title:
Mike Parsons with Jeremy Westcott
Transformation: embrace the season
We are entering into a season preparing us for holiness; a season of removing stumbling blocks; a season of preparation to cross the threshold into the glory realm; a season for transformation. Not just a minor adjustment of surface appearance, but fundamental, radical change, affecting body, soul and spirit.
Let’s not resist it, but embrace it. Let’s cooperate in being changed from glory to ever-increasing glory. Entering into the process of refining and purifying is entirely voluntary. That said, we know that sometimes God will engineer circumstances around our lives to give us further opportunities to volunteer. We can fall on the Rock, or the Rock can fall on us.
Like you have never known
Here is part of a prophetic word which God gave me before I first taught this series at Freedom in 2012:
“It is time to pray that the lid comes off and to call forth my angels who are waiting to start gathering and removing stumbling blocks both within and without. Holiness fire is coming, the highway of holiness has been prepared. It is time to walk in the river of fire. You have walked over it and felt its heat but now it is time to be baptised in fire. The heat will turn idols back into the dust they came from: to be under your feet, not in your hearts.
“Call forth the gathering angels. The lids are coming off the sewers, the secret and hidden things of the heart are about to be exposed. All I ask is for the willingness to submit to the fire that will refine, purify and prepare you for true holiness.
“I am about to restore your souls like you have never known, and lead you on paths of righteousness like you have never known.
“I am going to prune the church. I am going to cut off the branches that are producing no fruit. I am going to remove the stumbling blocks to true kingdom government. I am going to close the access doors that the enemy has had. Some have already been removed.
“I am looking for those who are willing to be pruned in the unproductive areas of their lives and in their desires and their priorities…”
We have seen that happen at Freedom Church (kingdom government has been established here, but in the process, lids have certainly come off some sewers and we have experienced some painful pruning, both corporate and personal). What is true for us locally is true for you, wherever you are reading this. God wants His whole church transformed, metamorphosed, transfigured, changed, conformed into the image of Jesus; not patterned, moulded, conformed to the world.
Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect (Rom 12:1-2).
Transformation is a process of change, a renewal, a restoration to original condition; not to what Adam was like before his sin but to what he would have become. How would things be today if Man had not fallen, but had spent the intervening centuries pursuing God’s plan for him and for creation? How would we be?
Our goal in transformation is to become wholly like Jesus; to live like Him; to do as He did, and greater things (John 14:12); to be conformed to His image.
For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son (Romans 8:29).
One degree to another
In our day, the prophetic books (portals) have been opened and we are receiving deeper levels of revelation and understanding. But these also call for deeper levels of transformation. It is like going from pre-school mathematics (recognise a number), through primary school (counting, simple sums, addition, multiplication), to secondary school (algebra, equations, calculus), undergraduate, postgraduate and so on. I suspect many of us are not much beyond pre-school as yet.
But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit (2 Corinthians 3:18).
There are progressive levels of transformation to maturity, progressive levels of responsibility and authority. God wants to take us from servant to bondservant to steward to friend; lord to king to son.
By the mercies of God
Freedom from sin (Rom 6:16-18); the gift of eternal life (Rom 6:23); peace with God (Rom 5:1); the grace of God (Rom 5:2); salvation from wrath (Rom 5:9); the gift of repentance (Rom 2:4-5); the love of Christ (2 Cor 5:14-15): the mercies of God are new every morning, and they motivate us to present ourselves as living sacrifices, ready for transformation.
It is indeed a process, and it may take some time. But we can begin today (and every day) by offering ourselves as a living sacrifice. We can invite Him to do what He needs to do in us.
He will challenge our conscience, imagination, reason, mind, emotions, will, and choice; our motives, desires, attitudes, mind-sets, belief systems, familiar spirits, patterns of sin, trading systems, idols, stumbling blocks, entanglements; hurts, pains, rejections, fears, inadequacies, inferiorities, disappointments and more besides. He will deal with our sin, transgression and iniquity. He will restore our supernatural abilities.
Are we up for that?
If so, let’s pray:
God I thank you for your presence in my life.
I open the gate of first love and invite you into my spirit
I invite you to activate my spiritual senses and flow through me
Jesus I surrender control of my life to your lordship.
You are Lord of my life.
I choose to be a bond servant.
Train me as a good steward
So that I can be your friend.
Renew my mind
Heal my emotions
Restore my conscience
Cleanse my imagination
Direct my will.
Train my senses to hear your voice
To know your heart
See your vision
And be directed by your peace.
Cleanse my bloodline and seed-line
Transform my DNA.
Father I choose to follow my eternal destiny
Into lordship, kingship and sonship.
I choose, as an ambassador of heaven,
To administer the rule of the kingdom of God
On earth as it is in heaven.
Display me as a son of light on the earth.
Manifest your kingdom rule through me to the world around me.
Related articles by Freedom ARC
- Present A Living Sacrifice (3) – practice
- Revelation of God’s Prophetic Timetable
- Transformation Through Communion
Other resources from Freedom ARC
- Transformation audio series (much of the content of this post is taken from session 1).
- Ambassadors of Heaven audio series.
- DNA Transformation (YouTube playlist of Mike’s ‘Supernatural Mentoring’ videos which touch on this subject).
The year of Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee, 2012, saw an abundance of prophecies about a new era for the Church (click for a selection). For me it brought a conviction of seeing things falling into place, especially after an awesome gathering in August at Birmingham, as described in An invisible jigsaw falls into place. It greatly reminded me of having prepared annually for the new school year but going up to a higher class, and Spirit-filled believers have an exceptional schooling (see Back to School-College-Uni).
So I’m most encouraged that Mike refers to 2012, and spells out what was on my mind about increasing in Godly wisdom like when we went through various schools – but I omitted my intention of saying most churchgoers are in, or unwilling to progress beyond, nursery school!
More remarkable are references to ‘stumbling blocks’ and the ‘mercies of God’, because they featured prominently last week, as follows:
- Tues 18th: the closing verses to the draft of my last post on Jerusalem (re. faith of traditional church leaders) got augmented. I added what had cropped up in that morning’s quiet time but used the literal wording rather than the standard NKJV text, “It is impossible that no offenses should come…”; ie. I wrote ‘stumbling blocks’, not ‘offenses’.
- My study bible notes to Luke 17:1 state ‘offenses’ means ‘stumbling blocks’, and is literally the trigger of a trap or snare. In the verse it designates something that causes one to sin, and Jesus issues a strong warning against apostasy.
- Within minutes of publishing that post an Elder called about having an insight into our unexpected month-long recurrence of a major health issue and said he’d seen a ‘stumbling block’! When my wife waited upon the Lord nothing came, she went to watch a TV programme but it suddenly changed to show a long-forgotten but traumatic episode of when she was 9 years old playing out on the TV Screen!!
- Wed 19th: our Elder ministered as directed into that ‘video’ stumbling block’.
- Thur 20th: Nina awoke to find there were no signs of this daily manifestation! Praise and thank the Lord greatly.
- Thur 20th: that morning’s prophetic Lion Bites was exactly on target, as implied in my covering comment to New mercies every morning! Mike refers above to “the mercies of God are new every morning’!
- Fri 21st: not normally on-line, but went to adjust that draft only to see email note of Mike’s post being re-blogged on Ecclesia of Burning Ones – thank you so much for bringing this excellent post to my attention.
I can only conclude: NOW’s the time to action Mike’s post!
To God alone be the glory for this true story…
Join me as I meander along my musings and, as we wend our way, watch out for.:
- a modern movie and its location
- a medieval English abbey
- a lost Renaissance painting
- a legendary epic voyage
- the earliest Christian letter
- a new appreciation of prayer.
Except for the first, the rest took me by surprise the weekend before last. As pieces of an ‘invisible jigsaw’ they’d fallen into view like fresh snow.
Our long weekends off weekday busy-ness start on Fridays, and Friday before last we enjoyed strolling around Chichester city centre in warm sunshine. Even-tide, we relaxed by catching up on an iPlayer movie recommended by our eldest daughter…
This movie written and directed by Emilio Estevez is most engrossing. It stars Martin Sheen as an irascible American doctor, Tom, who goes to southern France to deal with the loss of his son (Emilio Estevez) after his accidental death after setting off on “The Way of St. James” (see map). Rather than returning to the States, Tom decides to honour his son’s ambition and complete the journey on his behalf. But he doesn’t expect the profound impact this trip has on him. The Way tells the story of his near-500 miles hike to Santiago de Compostela in north-western Spain.
The route is one of many to one of the oldest of pilgrimages sites in Europe. I recalled learning about its connection with Reading Abbey upon researching the abbey’s history Founded in 1121 by king Henry I, this English abbey was also one starting place for the Camino de Santiago, and is reputed to have the remains of St James’ hand as a relic. (My researches began in my office overlooking the ruins of the abbey’s mill, and are as copied here.)
So this movie had a personal, albeit indirect, relevance – but more was to come on the ‘morrow…
Lost painting found
The next morning I found buried inside Saturday’s paper some interesting facts about a ‘centuries-old art history mystery’ –
Caravaggio’s original ‘Mary Magdalene in Ecstasy’ has been discovered in a private European collection, the world’s leading expert on the Renaissance master has claimed.
Although the 1606 painting has been copied several times, historian Mina Gregori says the original has finally been found. The Telegraph’s Andrea Vogt says this expert won’t reveal which country it is in but can confirm that when she first saw the 100 by 90cm oil on canvas in the owners’ home, she had no doubt. Andrea reports, Gregori called the find a “marvellous addition” to the art world. The 80-year-old scholar and authenticator said seeing the original with her own eyes was a career highlight: “I think after all these years, I deserved it”.
This article rang a bell deep in long-forgotten memories of my pre-Christian interests because:
The painting refers to the legend in which Mary, living as a hermit in a cave in southern France near Aix-en-Provence after Christ’s death, was overcome seven times a day by “the delightful harmonies of the celestial choirs”.
That reference, especially about an ecstatic trance, would connect with remarks I was yet to hear on the third day, and thus start seeing a part of this ‘invisible puzzle’. But we should first consider the importance of this biblical person.
Mary Magdalene was the first to see Jesus alive after his burial in the garden tomb and so many, including Pope Benedict, regard her as an “Apostle to the Apostles”. She was the sister of Martha and Lazarus, whom Jesus brought back from the dead and was to later become Bishop of Cyprus. This family are reputed to have been of royal blood and owned estates in and around Jerusalem as well as at Magdala near the Sea of Galilee, where the younger sister Mary lived and is said to have fallen into a sinful life. Jesus is thought to have frequented one or other of their premises whilst travelling with dozens of disciples.
This blessed woman became deeply devoted to Jesus after deliverance – no wonder she later sat wrapt in His teaching instead of helping her sister. On that need Jesus remarked, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her” (Luke 10:38-42 emphasis added).
Hence, Mary Magdalene is patron of contemplatives and Caravaggio’s painting reflects an outcome of her desire and her Master’s promise.
(Thank you to ‘Joe Catholic’ for also pointing out Mary is a model for penitent sinners. Also see this informative rebuttal of modern Catholic biblical scholarship.)
Next, I dived into my library and dug out a book bought in 1971 during my investigations into early Church history.:
The Coming of the Saints
This book by John Taylor, first published in 1906, is replete with source references and combines history and legend to portray the earliest Christian missions into western Europe (Spain, France and Britain). It helped me as a non-believer to learn about the early church’s transmission of Jesus’ original teachings. In my story, I explained my desire to find out why churches were not doing what Jesus had done, as He promised in John 14:12, as well as how much of His teaching had been lost.
The editor of the 1967 reprint answers complaints about mixing written records and local legend, to say this book shows they substantiate one another and dovetail together. “Of particular interest are the references culled from churches founded by the saints who were companions of our Lord during His ministry”, maintains Gladys Taylor. She writes her namesake gathered evidence from a pilgrimage made to the French churches, and other countries, and thus produced impressive proof of their antiquity.
One chapter summarises the Life of St Mary Magdalene complied by Rabanus Maurus (776-856 AD) – a manuscript copy of which is lodged in Magdalen College Library, Oxford. In his closing years he was Archbishop of Mayence (Mainz, Germany).
First however, I needed to re-remind myself of the book’s main thesis. Its first chapters examine the known historical events, and those behind the scenes, at the close of and after Jesus’ life. Taylor thus adds detail to scripture’s narrative and he posits a list of disciples additional to the apostles, deacons and the family of Jesus. In addition to considering the ‘home-base’ of Capernaum, he lists names of followers from the house on Mont Zion and the city of Jerusalem, and towns of Bethany, Emmaus and Jericho.
Then Taylor covers some early missionary journeys not covered in Acts of the Apostles, noting Dr Luke’s historic account doesn’t refer to the evangelical mission in Sardinia and Spain of John’s brother James. The only reference to James after that of Pentecost is his death at the hands of Herod in Jerusalem in 44 AD (Acts 12:2). His remains are said to have ended up centuries later back in Santiago de Compostela. Hence, pilgrimages to his shrine, as mentioned above.
Persecution following Apostle James’ martyrdom led to the dispersal of many disciples from Jerusalem. (This was about 10 years after that led by Saul of Tarsus.) Tradition of Provence, southern France, has a number of them being bundled into a boat without oars or sails somewhere near Mt Carmel and set adrift. They’re reputed to have been Lazarus, Joseph of Aramathea, Maximin (leader of disciples after the apostles and a friend committed to the care of the Magdalen) as well as Martha and Mary, Mary wife of Cleopas and a third Mary (Salome) and others.
However, I was interested in checking John Taylor’s reference to the correct James at Jerusalem. Was it John’s brother, or Jesus’ brother James who later led the Jerusalem church and wrote a brief epistle. It is James’ historic ruling at the first Church council that enabled non-Jews to associate with the Church without having to comply with the Mosaic laws their Jewish brethren had before coming to Christ.
So to clarify, I wasn’t so interested in Mary Magdalene as wanting to check out what Paul wrote to the Galatian churches about his post-conversion history. I recalled mention of church leaders he met when in Jerusalem, as well as Luke’s account of those meetings (Acts 15)
Written circa 50 AD Paul’s letter is the first and therefore the oldest, canonical Christian document and earlier than the Gospels. Therein Paul tells what he did, where he went and how he learned the Gospel of Jesus by direct, personal revelation; that is, not from any original disciple or apostle:
13 For you have heard of my former conduct in Judaism, how I persecuted the church of God beyond measure and tried to destroy it….15 But when it pleased God…16 to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately confer with flesh and blood,17 nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me; but I went to Arabia, and returned again to Damascus. 18 Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and remained with him fifteen days. 19 But I saw none of the other apostles except James, the Lord’s brother. 20 (Now concerning the things which I write to you, indeed, before God, I do not lie.) 21 Afterward I went into the regions of Syria and Cilicia. 22 And I was unknown by face to the churches of Judea which were in Christ. 23 But they were hearing only, “He who formerly persecuted us now preaches the faith which he once tried to destroy.” 24 And they glorified God in me.
Then after fourteen years I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, and also took Titus with me. 2 And I went up by revelation, and communicated to them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to those who were of reputation, lest by any means I might run, or had run, in vain. (Emphases added)
Video on Sunday
The next day, Sunday, we wanted some extra teaching and – independently – chose to watch the Paul Keith Davis and James Levesque video discussion I’d blogged about.
In arguing for the supra-natural abilities and dimension required to bring in the harvest that meets the heart of God, “as it is defined in scripture”, Paul Keith maintains this is for those who walk with God in realms of glory and demonstrate the supra-natural. He defines and explains this relating it to Jesus’ own ability (from 27:00 on video).
Then he tells of his mis-perception of Jesus’ prayer life (at 30:35) and surmising what it had been like after a long day ministering and teaching and travelling on foot – and then go pray and spend hours in prayer…thinking,
“…what a disciplined life!” says Paul Keith.
“No, you totally misunderstood My prayer life!” the Lord said.
“He said, “My prayer life was My reward!”
“The Lord’s been showing me how, at the end of the day, after He did everything He was supposed to do, He went out into the wilderness and He was released into the Presence of the Father!
“Just think about that for a minute…after a hard day could you go pray 5 hours…? No? Think of it as this:
“James, go spend 5 hours standing before the throne of God, go spend 5 hours in the Presence of your Father – let Him download on you, let Him refresh you, restore you.
“That’s why Jesus could pray all night! He lived under an open heaven and when He went to pray – as soon as He quieted His flesh – He was standing in the Presence of His Father, standing before the throne of God, getting refreshed and learning what the Father wanted to reveal.”
An exceptionally instructional and fascinating teaching. At 41:30 he considers this was how apostle Paul spent lengthy periods with the Lord before he ever met any disciples and apostles and moved into any ministry.
Consequently, having considered that the day before I was ready for what he said!
This insight on Jesus’ prayer life is the common denominator between the discussion on video and Mary Magdalene, who spent lengthy periods immersed in God, as had Jesus.
Paul Keith’s insight doesn’t detract from but enhances the model prayer Jesus gave his disciples, as recorded in Matthew 6:5-15. And it magnifies Jesus’ personal prayer to our Father in John 17. It’s no wonder this Mary went so deep yet so high in contemplative ecstasy – will we?
(Remember to, “First seek the kingdom of God and His righteousness…” – Matt 6:33).
Furthermore, from apostle Paul’s explanation this kind of intimacy was the norm in the earliest years of “The Way”, as the fellowship was known before the term “Christian” was coined at Antioch. (See Acts chapters 18-24, especially vv 24:18 and 22.)
Also, Paul Keith later refers to the event on the road to Emmaus, about which and without any prior intention I’d inserted a remark just before publishing the latest blog before that weekend!
Therefore, that weekend is yet another example of ‘God-incidence’ (footnote refers).
By the way!
A couple of days later upon opening up my Bible to find where I’d got to, I found at the second turn the beginning of Luke chapter 8 staring up at me. There from the left-hand column just beside the volume’s spine I just couldn’t miss these words:
Now it came to pass, afterward, that He went through every city and village, preaching and bringing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God. And the twelve were with Him, 2 and certain women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities — Mary called Magdalene, out of whom had come seven demons, 3 and Joanna the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others who provided for Him from their substance.
Later, upon reviewing and adjusting the draft of this piece, I decided to refer to the first name for the group of believers as followers of the way of Jesus Christ; the way of life He taught and demonstrated as “The Way, The Truth and The Life”.
Then when I’d done and re-read the draft I realised I’d gone FULL circle – starting with the movie ‘The Way’ I’d ended up by including scriptures on ‘The Way of Jesus’ !!
Furthermore, an email arrived about that time which opens as follows.:
Truth, we find, is stranger than fiction. Some things that happen to us when in relationship with Christ no writer could make up. And I am amazed continually at what our God does in my life and in this world…(continue here)
Could the Lord be getting our attention to pray the way He does?
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Image: Flying puzzles by Nokhoog Buchachon, courtesy of Freedigitalphotos.com
Jesus & Mary fable:
I refer to coincidences that are more than serendipity (happy, fortuitous chance events) as ‘God-incidences’, for they seem to have been arranged with a clear purpose in mind. We may not always know the reason but there’s a distinct thread connecting two or more events that are closely related in time: an “aha” moment
Frequently I’m amazed by those which involve scripture and occur one day after another and sometimes even 3 or 4 consecutive days, and always from different sources. I liken God-incidence to completing a jigsaw puzzle and it seems the Lord is stressing the importance or relevance of something. So they get my full attention, as happened in the above account. (See main menu for fuller exposition.)
“The Bride is making herself ready and we need to prepare the way of the Lord…”
I invite you to spend an hour watching another free webinar listening to men of God as they discuss fascinating topics. ‘Eavesdropping’, or sitting around the table with them as they chat, is an easier way of learning than hearing a sermon. ‘Steel sharpens steel’ as they share and develop their ideas – and our own understanding grows too!
After Paul Keith introduces his friend James Levesque, they open by talking about 18th Century Christian activities in New England, their relevance to God’s call upon James in his then dysfunctional life, and how the Church is to change for its ‘new season’.
One topic is the major harvest of souls Bob Jones prophesied and Paul Keith clarifies what he said, as well as expanding upon some material previously covered on this blog (see tag).
Half way through, Paul Keith shares an awesome personal insight from the Lord about what happened during His daily times with Father. It’s a profound lesson on getting into a deeper intimacy, one of the blessings of which should enable us to portray Jesus as He really is, as well as conveying His authority.
This discussion points the way for the Church to progress beyond its out-dated forms to demonstrate the supernatural gospel. In my humble opinion, these prophetic men bring insights that encourage believers in these increasingly difficult days.
Be mightily blessed as you watch and ruminate on these matters and much more…
“Lord, we’re seated with You in heavenly places, let us operate our lives from that perspective….Let us see the eternal realm…We make that our mission, our prerogative, our number-one objective between now and the end of this year to enter the heavenly realm where God’s presence is, the miraculous is and the realm of faith….”
In so saying during prayer, Paul Keith Davis opens his thorough teaching on coming closer to God, as in the latest WhiteDove Ministries’ video.:
It is noticeable how Paul Keith’s authority and maturity in Christ have taken a ‘quantum leap’ since seeing him at ‘Days of Wonder’ in Cardiff.
After Cardiff, I meditated upon apostle Paul’s letter to the early Ephesian church. Here, he addresses current – and future – church leaders from the heavenly realm, and beside Jesus Christ in Father’s throne room. Why is that realm, which Paul describes as a Christian’s proper place of life, a rarity for most of today’s church leaders? Some, however, do know it personally and can thus speak from direct experience.
In this session, Paul Keith conveys a deeper understanding of what apostle Paul experienced and learned direct from Jesus, as related in his letters. Moreover,
“I’m of the ardent belief…that the End-time Bride of Christ is to also access that realm – as did the apostle Paul – to receive our revelation, our understanding, of the Gospel.
“Not one word can be added to the 66 books of the Bible, but with the mass confusion we have right now that’s being preached from pulpits…we need somebody to access heaven and tell us the truth! Is that not the truth?
“We need somebody to go behind the veil and get, “Thus saith the Lord” and bring the plumb-line revelation, “This is what the Lord said, I’ll stake my life on it”…
“Believe me, when they do they will be persecuted because it will go against the grain of what’s being preached today in the churches of America! It’s going to fly in the face of the religious spirit!”
Personally, I was impressed with his reference to re-visiting ‘revelatory seeds’ that had been sown soon after returning to the Lord after a period of being back-slidden. [That was in 1989 – the same year my life radically changed, as here, followed by many biblically educational insights.]
Paul Keith explains the impact upon him of Cardiff’s gathering and being challenged by people he met there,
“Some amazing things happened and another realm started to open up, one that had been open in years past – I’ve been ‘re-ignited’…to go through gates, doors and veils…”
This is encouraging because in a ministry time he noticed what was stirring within me, and has since continued strongly.
Also, in view of my past involvement in the New Age/occult, I’m especially impressed with Paul Keith’s correct instruction upon, and warnings about, the great dangers of occultists’ practice. Christians are to go through the door God has provided – Jesus Christ.
Finally, if Paul Keith’s incredible story of a translucent lady puzzles you, the sister and her blessing are known to our church.
Be mightily blessed as you watch…
Further to my recent post on the meeting in Cardiff, here’s a little more from Paul Keith Davis’ opening minutes:
“It’s not going to happen! We have no ability…we’re not eloquent enough, not smart enough, we’re not anything enough to get the job done without a dimension of the supernatural being manifested in real and tangible ways, so that a dying world can see it – and our doing what we’re called to do…
“Wouldn’t it be wonderful to do everything we’re called to do?…”
“It’s a time of awakening, of people doing what they’re called to do…you are uniquely qualified to meet the needs of your generation. I don’t know a more needy generation. Maybe those of Genesis 6 [Days of Noah] were more needy?
“The apostle Paul talking to Timothy said, ‘you think these days are bad, what about ‘the last days’, when they’ll be lovers of self and money grabbing?’…if apostle Paul needed the supernatural to confront what he did in his day, how much more do we because he said our day will be far worse.
“So the idea that the supernatural is only for the days of the Apostles because of the difficulty of their day is un-biblical. It is an un-biblical posture and we’ve got to break it off the evangelical mind-set of the Church.”
Ian Clayton’s personal story is of remarkable recovery from business failure and bankruptcy. In desperation he and his wife had no choice but to turn to God and to rely upon Him as their source of provision and supply. With fears a constant barrage in his face, Ian found the only way to face and deal with them was from above with God. And the only way he could have time for that was during repetitive, routine menial tasks like mowing their large lawn with a push-mower.
On the few times I’ve heard him, Ian often refers the importance of being in “Passionate pursuit of the Person and Presence of God”, which led to profound insights about Creation, time and space and the ‘heavenlies’.
In this gathering Ian launched off with,
“We don’t understand the value that our human body is to God…We have no revelation yet beyond the Cross…The Church has stopped at the Cross and we haven’t gone beyond it!
“I believe that in ‘crossing the Jordan’ is the revelation of our going beyond the Cross because Jesus didn’t actually sort of die – but He sort of did!”
Please don’t presume Ian’s introducing false doctrine akin to Islam’s denial of Jesus’ death. He goes on to talk about the physiological corrosive effect of blood in a dying body, and the possibility Jesus didn’t need it for or after His resurrection. Also, blood relates to breathing and having a voice.
In explaining this he cites disciple Thomas touching Jesus’ wounds. Unlike his brethren, Thomas hadn’t been there to see his teacher display His wounds to them.
For readers unfamiliar with Thomas, I’d explain that he was cynical about their claims. He wanted not only to see for himself that Jesus is alive but also to, “Put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side”, thereby testing their claims (John 20:24-28).
A week layer when they were all together, Jesus materialised out of thin air behind closed doors and invited Thomas to not only ”bring the finger and perceive” the nail marks in His hands but also “thrust hands into My side” [per Greek-interlinear] which, says Ian, means exactly that rather than simply touch.
Ian’s of the opinion that ‘into’ means the same as being ‘IN Christ’, for he says,
“Thomas put his hands INTO a new creature – not a human being – into a realm that’s to do with the issue of breathing (?) that we have no reference for because the Church has not been into the darkness yet!…I’m trying to make things simple…”
We all laugh and, indeed, Ian’s dramatic sessions are highly interactive. He often pauses with a grin and raised eyebrow to watch reactions and check we’re following him. It’s a standing joke that his theology ‘fries brains’!
“Do you realise ‘Doubting Thomas’ wasn’t doubting at all? He was the only one (of those disciples) that stepped into a revelatory realm in his time, and that others are doubting you can get into!”
[This notion may also give an insight into Mark 16:12 statement that Jesus ‘appeared in another form to two of them as they walked into the country’ (to Emmaus); also into the ‘mystery’ of believers’ bodies putting off corruption and becoming incorruptible – 1 Cor 15:50-57]
The darkness to which Ian refers isn’t demonic but ‘treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places wherein we can know the God of Israel ‘ (Isaiah 45:3). And that scripture was given not for an Israelite but for the Lord’s anointed gentile, Cyrus king of Persia (per 1st verse). So how much more appropriate it is for believers in Jesus Christ, who are not only His royal priesthood but who also are blessed with ‘power to become sons of God’, to be able to access that treasure. (John 1:12 KJV)
Also, this relates directly to His existence before Creation. From the outset of seeking Him, Ian wanted to know what God was like before the Beginning – “What He was like when He was, before the ‘is’ and ‘was’ became ‘was’.” (‘The Alpha and Omega’ of Rev 1:8).
This journey started with an unexpected hint about what may be a theme for me to note – that of ‘regeneration’. It was fascinating, therefore, how all three teachers dovetailed together and spoke into several personal points. Furthermore, the Lord began a deep stirring over His Word, which Paul Keith picked up upon during ministry time.
I was reminded of the time the Lord impressed upon me the concept of an as yet unwritten book of scripture – one beyond the Bible’s back cover and all about the new earth and new heaven or ‘Age to Come’. That is, following Revelation and after the New Jerusalem and the Marriage of the Lamb. Some confirmations were soon to follow and concluded with teaching upon the Sonship-Bridal Paradigm by Paul Keith (see Revival 1:glory stories).
So the ‘Days of Wonder’ meeting plugs into that concept, especially with Ian’s teaching on how God exists outside time in eternity as The Alpha and Omega, where the End meets the Beginning,
“We don’t understand what God is. To understand what we will become we have to go back to the beginning; we’ll end up in the beginning – we’re going back into what we were, because Hebrews think circular. God is Alpha and Omega and what started is where we will finish…”
His exposition on this and the gift of prophecy and creating our future was fascinating.
So the concept of God’s glory hidden in holy darkness is intriguing; even illuminating, in view of what I once saw long before I was born-again. Living unbeknown in the enemy’s camp, I dreamt of a huge, black thunder-cloud coming over the horizon. Much as I love watching thunderstorms and recalled many ferocious ones in Italy and Greece, this one was menacing because it possessed a brooding intelligence. A deep fear came upon me. I didn’t know about Ezekiel’s vision, but his opening description of the cloud of God was like my dream (Ezek 1:4).
Also, a question I wanted to ask Ian about a pre-Christian experience in ‘nirvana’ and the devourer was answered by his teaching. Thus, I understand the realm of a second heaven is accessible to anyone practising occult techniques, but only those who are ‘in Christ’ are protected by His blood and may enter the third heaven, as did apostle Paul (2Cor 12:2) – and Thomas!
A couple of other things he mentioned in passing connected into things I’d sensed, and Paul Keith also spoke into thoughts I’d had on Daniel, judgement and contending. And on the final day Ian taught about ‘The Age to Come’!
My notes can but give a brief ‘taster’ of these ‘Days of Wonder’ and I’m listening again to the sessions and trying to process everything.
And I’ve yet to explain about the lion, as promised in my musings upon Fflad-y-Brenin..
The event made a mighty impact upon Paul Keith, as related in ‘Follow-on’ video-post.
In this brief video blog Bobby Conner covers some points taught and prophesied a few days earlier at Days of Wonder in Cardiff. There, I noted Paul Keith re-iterated what Nathan Morris had emphasised at length when in Plymouth, the need for believers to start contending for the true Gospel of Jesus Christ, and Bobby refers to this too.
In opening, Bobby says
“I have never been more excited about the season we’re in. This is the season of advancement. We do not have to tarry back. We’re not waiting on God – He’s waiting on us!
“I tell you God wants to do a new thing and He says “It’s springing up now” and He says “It’s a hidden thing kept in reserve”, and God could not and would not release this hidden wisdom until He’s found a people who like and understand Him…It’s in 1st Corinthians 2:6-7.
“And so we need to tap into that hidden wisdom. It’s going to be a wisdom that shows us how to get into the presence of God.
“Boy, if we get into the presence of God, and the presence of gets into us…that’s what God’s after…”
Be thoroughly blessed as you hear what these men of God discuss, and do check out the scriptures Bobby refers to.
With the phrase “in the regeneration” of Matthew 19:28 emblazoned in mind and setting a seal of expectancy for our short holiday, I was also alert to another claim.
At the back of my mind about the gathering in Cardiff was a reference I’d read to its being of ‘strategic importance’.
I must be frankly honest, however, for on checking all through the ‘flyer’ I cannot find what I saw and read – but in my opinion, it was indeed an important meeting for changes going on in the wider church
To continue from the 2nd part of this regenerating week in South Wales, on leaving Ffald-y-Brenin via Fishguard we headed south and eastward for Cardiff and thence to Cwmbran for the evening’s scheduled ‘Outpouring’ service at Victory Church.
That was our intention but we got halted when a large, sliding mirror met my big toe!
There was time to book into our hotel in Cardiff and have a bite to eat before heading for Cwmbran. However, on unpacking and hanging my clothes in the wardrobe its mirrored sliding doors jammed and somehow one door dropped on my left foot – OUCH! A first aider and manager were soon with us and ice pack padded my blue toe-nail. And in the heat we found the air conditioning unit didn’t work. The upshot was a move to a larger room and free drinks with our meal. The outing to Cwmbran had gone out of the window.
But there was a track record for such setbacks being an indicator of a terrific time coming up next – and remember the promise in Prophecy of a roller-coaster ride – get ready…?
Back in 2005 we attended a week-long school on the supernatural in scripture. It took longer to arrive in that Midlands town than planned but, with only 5 mins to the school’s start, I found a nearby car-park and arrived at the venue in time. At lunch-time we went to book in at our hotel and grab a bite of lunch.
“Your room’s been cancelled Mr Barker!” the hotel’s receptionist told me.
“What? How? When?”
“Our note says you phoned at 10:25 this morning to cancel…” was her reply.
“Ridiculous! That was about the time we parked in town for the event we’re attending !”
It was a most instructive week. Although trained thoroughly in healing and deliverance at Ellel Ministries we’d not had such in-depth instruction for 12 hours/day in these aspects of the Bible. I asked tutor Todd Bentley, “Where were you 40 years ago?”. Had all this knowledge and instruction been available when I was a teenager, I wouldn’t have sought it from Eastern religions and the New Age (see Searching for truth leads me into captivity).
I recall looking at the large local parish church’s cemetery opposite the school’s venue of an old converted cinema. The thought struck me that church was as dead as those in its massive graveyard! (Hence my remark in the previous post.)
So now, with throbbing big toe and its purple-blue nail I was hoping for an exceptional time. And we had just that! Thank you Lord God.
Days of Wonder
How can words describe what was heard and experienced? I’ll try with a few snippets after this shot of us between the ladies’ raised arms…
Three worship sessions daily were literally ‘out of this world’. On one occasion it seemed as though not only the entire 300-odd assembly but also the room were suspended high in orbit (maybe between earth and moon?). The ceiling with its thick beams became a vast window/skylight through which dark space and stars could be seen. And the sound of our worship at times was like what I’d heard in Newport at the foot of the ‘Hill of Angels’.
[I recalled the sound of angels joining with spontaneous worship at the Revival Alliance in 2012. It got captured on cd and the contractor sound engineer testified that there were instruments registering which they’d not connected. And the way spotlights were spinning in time to the music was wonderful. An ‘invisible jigsaw’ falls into place refers.]
The convener Justin Abraham’s sessions were very good, especially his emphatically stressing that a deep, burning desire to know Father God is essential for entering heavenly realms. And it’s key to everything taught at his gathering.
I was interested in seeing how the two main teachers Paul Keith Davis and Ian Clayton would deliver their different subject material. Each has a sound understanding of our living Lord and his word, yet have their own distinct experiences and style of speaking
We’ve known of Paul Keith since we heard him in Bath several years ago, and have attended some of his UK conferences as well as following his regular newsletters.
In those early days he once went by, heading towards someone else, but glanced at us. In doing so, he spoke an awesome personal word about Jesus’ return that remains etched in me.
The timing of that word’s fulfillment may present a personal problem, so I presumed. However, it so happened that Ian Clayton would teach upon longevity!
It’s 2 years since we first went to Well Church International and Ian was due to teach. He brought novel insights into scripture and on getting close to the Lord. I was pleased to hear him speak about coincidences, but very surprised when he used the same description of it that had popped into my mind a few weeks earlier! (See closing Note to this post.)
So that ‘link’ enabled me to accept his explanation of ‘God-incidence’ and to appreciate his other material. Also, I able to follow and understand everything he was teaching on these novel, perhaps radical, and often scientific but biblical concepts.
Paul Keith opened the gathering with,
“I believe that we’re on the verge of something significant… the spirit realm is saturated, its bursting, we’re at a tipping point. You never know when..the next session might be the one, the next prayer, the next prophetic word…We’ve got to keep doing what we know how to do and it will happen…”
“From Day of Atonement 2014 to Day of Atonement 2015 we are to have things and structures such as ‘apostolic’ hubs and communities in place for a spiritual jubilee…the next major juncture and anointing to build structure for the Millenium to forge the future from the unseen realm…
“It’s time for every born-again Christian to be able to SEE the kingdom of God…”
As an example he mentioned how Jesus appeared to Maria Woodward Etter and then saw a Bible appear on her wall with the glory of God shining from it. Thus, she understood its entire content supernaturally, but Paul Keith was quick to say that doesn’t mean she didn’t need to study scripture. He continued,
“I’m just telling you that in a place in God we can connect with heaven, all the dots get connected. I’ve had some of the revelations where suddenly you see it and think ‘How did you miss that!’
“There’s great truths, there’s great mysteries in the Bible that are going to be revealed to this last days’ generation that have been there all along but we just haven’t seen them yet.
“The blind is about to be removed and we’ll see things we haven’t seen because God’s reserved them for this hour. There’s truth reserved for this hour to present the Bride of Christ without spot or wrinkle
“They’re truths about the spirit realm, truths about the word, truths about who we are in Christ and Who Christ is in us and all of that…”
And that was just to start…!
[Photos courtesy of Lindi Masters, Well International Church.]