[anzac] WHAT about 'TABERNACLES'? - Andrew Strom

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From: "ANZAC Prophetic List" <prophetic@...>
Date: Wed, 09 Feb 2005 20:07:07 -0600
The FEAST of TABERNACLES - a key for today?
-by Andrew Strom.

From every quarter right now there is dissatisfaction with
Western Christianity and what it has become. ALL of us are
searching for something that will take us out of the spiritual
'rut' that the church seems to be in - into REAL Christianity
the like of which we have never seen. So many are yearning
and searching for this thing. -Something that goes beyond just
a temporary "revival" and ACTUALLY REMAINS WITH US. -A
permanent state of being. -Becoming the glorious Body of Christ 
in the earth as she is truly meant to be.

I was praying last night and God reminded me of the Feast of
Tabernacles. This is the Feast that represents God Himself
coming down and "TABERNACLING" with His people. -Actually
living and abiding with the corporate Body - his full holy presence
residing with us.

There were three major Feasts that the Israelites observed. The
first two - Passover and Pentecost - have been literally fulfilled
in the days of the New Testament. A number of teachers say
that 'Tabernacles' is the one that is yet to be fulfilled - and perhaps
this is what we are all sensing in our spirit. -A yearning for God to
come down - not just temporarily as with many past Revivals - but
actually remaining and 'tabernacling' with us - in all His glory.

So what is the pathway to seeing this occur?  Well, I cannot see 
that it is any different from the way in which God has ALWAYS
come down amongst His people. The first prerequisite is that the
Bride "makes herself ready". There must be a purifying of the
robes, a total cleansing of the hands and heart. This is why deep 
dealing with SIN and deep REPENTANCE have been at the heart 
of every major move of God. Before He can come down and dwell 
with us, there must be a corporate 'Body' that has been prepared 
and purified to receive Him. Sin must be rooted out. Pride and
vain imaginings must be brought down. Thus the 'Repentance' 
preachers - the "John the Baptists" must first come to prepare the 
way of the Lord. These preachers must be allowed to do their work 
or there will be no glory to follow.

Secondly, there must be a great crying to God to come and dwell
amongst us - to 'Tabernacle' with us - to display His glory and
bring His holy presence down. -A rending of hearts and a
desperate crying to God.

Both of these things have been spoken about on this List many
times before. They are the keys to the next Awakening - and 
possibly to the true fulfillment of "Tabernacles" itself. We must
have deep repentance and a great crying to God to "come down"
and glorify Himself amongst His people.

Below is a discussion of the type of 'Repentance' preachers that
God has always raised up when He wants to move in a new way.
Since we have our "John the Baptist" Conference coming up -
which is all about 'calling forth' these kinds of preachers - I felt it 
was appropriate to talk about this now. But it has to go beyond
this too. I truly believe that what God really wants is to 'Tabernacle' - 
to dwell with His people - and display His glory to the world. And
this type of preaching is just one of the steps toward that.

"JOHN the BAPTIST"s DOWN the AGES
-Preparing the way for a Visitation:

It is a well-known fact that in past Awakenings, the preachers were
often led to preach searchingly and fearlessly on "sin, righteousness 
and judgement". There is a very good reason for this:  Jesus had
specifically stated  that the Holy Spirit would CONVICT of these
very things - "sin, righteousness and judgement"! (Jn 16:8). Welsh
Revivalist Humphrey Jones once urged a young  preacher:  "...to
preach  with  severity  and conviction; aiming continually at the
conscience; charging the people with their  sins  to  their  very
face; having no regard for men's good or bad opinions; and avoid-
ing the exhibition of self during the delivery of your sermon."

These men would wield God's word under a mighty anointing, not as
some kind of blunt weapon to bludgeon people with, but rather  as
an  incisive,  precision  instrument, a "sharp, two-edged sword",
piercing deep into men's hearts, exposing  hidden  sins,  motives
and  desires, and bringing Godly sorrow and deep repentance.
What these preachers were looking for was a "broken heart and a
contrite  spirit".  As  with  Peter on the day of Pentecost, they
preached with a view to seeing men 'cut to the heart',  for  only
then could they be sure that the resulting repentance would be
truly deep and truly lasting.

This has almost always been the character of true Revival preach-
ing, from the days of the apostles right down to the present. 
In the book of Acts we read of Paul's fearless preaching to 
governor Felix: "And  as  he  reasoned  of  righteousness,
temperance and judgement to come, FELIX TREMBLED..." (Acts
24:25). And likewise we hear the martyr Stephen: "`You stiffnecked 
and uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always resist the Holy 
Spirit:  as your fathers did, so do you'..." (Acts 7:51-53). There are 
many further examples of this kind of preaching throughout the 
New Testament (in the ministries of Jesus and John the Baptist, for instance).

As one writer has noted, "fearless" preaching of  this kind seems 
calculated to produce either deep conviction or "the bitterest 
animosity" (often both!) The old Revivalists were men of enormous 
Godly authority, and they used God's word as a sword to 'lay 
seige' to the strongholds of sin, compromise and religion that 
were binding His people. This was never 'comfortable'  prea-
ching (for "sin, righteousness and judgement" are not comfortable
subjects). However, these men well knew that  "the  fear  of  the
Lord is the beginning of wisdom" (Pr 9:10). And they preached it
as such.

The whole point was to see the Body cleansed and purified - to 
prepare them for a visitation of the Lord.

As  Martin Luther said: "I was born to fight devils and factions.
It is my business to remove obstructions, to cut down thorns,  to
fill up quagmires, and to open and make straight paths. But if I
must have some failing let me rather speak  the  truth  with  too
great  severity  than  once  to act the hypocrite and conceal the
truth."  And the great Revivalist Charles Finney said of one typ-
ical  meeting:  "The  Spirit  of God came upon me with such power
that it was like opening a battery upon them. For  more  than  an
hour, and perhaps for an hour and a half, the word  of  God  came
through me to them in a manner that I could see was carrying  all
before it. It was a fire and a hammer breaking the rock, and as a
sword that was piercing to the dividing asunder of soul and spir-
it.  I saw that a general conviction was spreading over the whole
congregation. Many of them could not hold up their heads."

These "John the Baptists" often preached under such an incredible
anointing that the house would be literally full of  the  wailing
cries  and sobs of those stricken by God's Spirit. One eyewitness
wrote of Savonarola's preaching that it caused "such  terror  and
alarm,  such  sobbing  and  tears  that people passed through the
streets without speaking, more dead  than  alive"!   Some  modern
Christians,  totally  unused to this kind of preaching, might say
that such an emphasis on "sin, righteousness and  judgement" is
way  over  the top. However, in circumstances such as those found
in today's church, this kind of  preaching  is  EXACTLY  what  is
needed. This is why God has so often seen fit to raise up and em-
ploy this kind of preaching in conditions very similar to today.

These preachers were so full of God's presence, so saturated with 
His glory, so endued with power from on high,  that  Revival
literally followed them wherever they went. They would never have
dared to preach the way they did without this anointing (for 'the
letter kills but the Spirit gives life').  But  how  exactly  did
they obtain such a mighty anointing? Well, as most of the old
records show, it was largely through agonizing, prevailing PRAYER
that  they  had  broken through into this realm of real 'Revival'
power in their ministry.

May the "John the Baptists" of the next Great Awakening be
found urgently - before the sun sets over the Western church. Their
job is to see the Body prepared and purified for her day of visitation. 
-This is step number one, and it MUST HAPPEN. I believe this 
is truly God's priority.

God bless you all.

Kindest regards in Christ,

Andrew Strom.