"Thou son of man, shew the house to the house of Israel, that they may be ashamed of their iniquities: and let them measure the pattern." (Ezek 43:10)
The 32,000 of Gideon represent the Babylonian church in microcosm. These entered into the court of the tabernacle which is the wilderness of the Sinai peninsula between the Red Sea and the river Jordan. These all, professing and confessing alike, are subject to natural light which produces and enhances confusion. The greater sum of these are professing Christians who will never get beyond the stony ground of the brasen altar of sacrifice which is the cross. These are the goats of the flock. These do not believe God. They sooner or later will all return to Egypt. This is the stony ground of Sower Soweth the Word. A remnant flock of those who entered into the wilderness will advance beyond the cross. These are confessing Christians. The 10,000 of Gideon. These all believe God.
The most influential feature of this wilderness landscape is the brasen laver which affects every pilgrim as they walk. However, these are still subject to natural light as well. There is a dual influence upon this Christian. The majority of these will not proceed beyond the brasen laver. This is the thorny ground of Sower Soweth the Word where the flock of sheep will remain. The sheep will bring no fruit themselves to perfection. Some of the sheep (Gideon's 9,700) will be obedient and support their shepherds. Some of the sheep will not be obedient and they will be taught obedience (Jud 8:6,7,16;Dan 7:21;Rev 13:7).
A small company of shepherds will successfully overcome the adversity of the wilderness and continue their advance "as one man" across the river Jordan into the good ground of the Sower Soweth the Word which is the promised land of the tabernacle. The 300 of Gideon. This is the tabernacle church of God. This company is taught in the spiritual light of the tabernacle. God reveals Himself to this overcomer body according to their willingness and capacity for He desires to fill them with Himself. The 300 of Gideon were set into three companies of one hundred each within the tabernacle. These three companies bear fruit, more fruit, and much fruit. This is the good ground wherein some bring forth thirtyfold, some sixtyfold, and some an hundredfold.
*And there APPEARED a great wonder in heaven; a woman CLOTHED WITH THE SUN, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars: And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered. (Rev 12:1,2)
The woman is the sixtyfold of the tabernacle church who is even now travailing in birth pains and delivering the man child body of Christ. Every seed brings forth after its own kind. Hence, the man child body of Christ cannot be birthed by the Babylonian courtyard church from which God is now calling all true believers to "Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues." (Rev 18:4). Where shall we come out of her to? God desires that you enter into the tabernacle church (II Chr 30:8).
*And SHE brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne. (Rev 12:5)
The Greek text of Revelation 12:5 may shed some light in comparison:
*And she brought forth a son male, who IS ABOUT TO shepherd all the nations with rod an iron: and was caught away her child to God and his throne. (Textus Receptus: Rev 12:5)
The sixtyfold woman of the tabernacle church is giving birth to the hundredfold male child astraddle the golden altar (prayer, praise, and worship) thru the rent veil into the throne of God. Jesus is the pattern Son and this birth "is about to" happen and, I believe, is happening now at this very moment. This is a spiritual birth. I do not look for a "sign" of its occurrence but rather expect the birth to be imperceptible to everyone except those currently experiencing it. We have entered into the first half of the seven year tribulation. The years of this period may or may not be literal years. The latter half is called the "great tribulation" by Jesus (Matt 24:21).
*STUDY TO SHEW THYSELF APPROVED UNTO GOD, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, RIGHTLY DIVIDING THE WORD OF TRUTH. (II Tim 2:15)
*Turn, O backsliding children, saith the LORD; for I am married unto you [the church]: and I will take you [who have turned to me] one of a city [very few], and two of a family [extended biblical family] and I WILL BRING YOU [out of the Babylonian church] TO ZION: AND I WILL GIVE YOU PASTORS ACCORDING TO MINE HEART [Isa 3:1-3;Heb 11;Rev 12:5], WHICH SHALL FEED YOU WITH KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING. And it shall come to pass, when ye be MULTIPLIED AND INCREASED [Gen 1:28] in the land [Most Holy Place], in those days [end of millennium], saith the LORD, they shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of the LORD: neither shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall [any of] that be done any more [because we will be the ark and the ark will be us]. (Jer 3:14-16)
At the end of the "great tribulation" the matured, fully educated body of Christ appears corporately atop mount Zion (Rev 14:1-4). This is the completed body of Christ with Christ Jesus the Lamb at its head. Then things on this earth will get very interesting because some of the saints will be operating in the fullness of Him. However, we will not operate in the fullness of Him until after we celebrate the Feast of Atonement and thereafter receive the fullness of the Holy Spirit. We must become fully prepared, trained, and educated by God.
Jesus son of Joseph had become fully prepared by God for His earthly ministry only when He received the full anointing of the Holy Spirit in the river Jordan (Matt 3:13-17). He became Jesus Christ. He then began an earthly ministry that was to last for approximately 3 1/2 years. During this 3 1/2 year period He manifested that which He had been given by our Father, the fullness of the Holy Spirit (I Cor 12:7-10). Jesus is the pattern Son. We are to become Like Him. However, as forerunner and Head, He is always one step ahead of us. We are born unsaved and become saved. In that sense He was born saved and became God Man. We are born again with an earnest of the Holy Spirit. He was born again with the fullness of the Holy Spirit. He ministered on this earth for 3 1/2 years with the amount of the Holy Spirit (fullness) that He had received from our Father. We will minister on this earth for 3 1/2 years with the amount of the Holy Spirit (earnest) that we have received from our Father. When? As did Jesus Christ, the last 3 1/2 years of our natural life. We will fulfill the type and pattern that Jesus Christ has laid before us during the second half of the tribulation called the "great tribulation." This will be a period of absolutes.
*And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth IN THE SIGHT OF [antichrist] men, And deceiveth [II Thess 2:9-12] them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do IN THE SIGHT OF the beast [antichrist body]; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live. (Rev 13:13,14)
The antichrist beast body (all unsaved are antichrists) walks by sight. The antichrist body is a counterfeit and imitator of the body of Christ. How does the body of Christ walk in pure form? By faith: "The just shall live by faith" (Rom 1:17). The opposite of faith is sight. If the antichrist body is a counterfeit and imitator of the body of Christ and antichrist is preaching and teaching "strong delusion" by sight during the "great tribulation," what do you suppose the body of Christ is preaching and teaching at this same time? Strong truth! Sight feeds upon signs, wonders and miracles. Therefore, the body of Christ will perform no signs, wonders or miracles. "(For we walk by faith, not by sight:)." (II Cor 5:7). They cannot. They are working with an indwelling earnest of the Holy Spirit and must therefore depend solely upon faith. Praise God. Thank you Lord. The great tribulation will indeed be either black or white, either sight or faith. No mingling. Those students who are presently the birth pangs of the woman (please read Luke 2:40-52) will soon graduate from God's University of Faith with baccalaureate degrees and preach and teach faith (Rom 10:8, the pure gold) during the great tribulation. Faith is the gold. They will preach and teach the pure message of exclusive faith in opposition to antichrist's message of pure sight while they attend graduate school (same university) for 3 1/2 years until the Day of Atonement (graduation day for everybody: Kindergarden, Grade School, High School, College, University).
*And God saw every thing that he had made [prophetically: restored whole on the sixth - thousand year day], and, BEHOLD, IT WAS VERY GOOD. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day [of Atonement]. (Gen 1:31)
*AND [after their filling and completed education] THEY THAT BE WISE [wise men: Bezaleel, Aholiab, Zerubbabel] SHALL SHINE as the brightness of the firmament [Gen 1:8, Heaven here; Rev 21:23]; and they that turn many to righteousness [preach in the millennium] as the STARS [like angels] for ever and ever. But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end [of the fulfillment of these words on the Day of Atonement]: [then] many shall run to and fro [like spiritual horses, Joel 2:9], AND KNOWLEDGE SHALL BE INCREASED. (Dan 12:3,4)
The most willing students with the greatest capacity as ordained by God will not be physically caught up but certainly will be spiritually enraptured. Please note that the enraptured saints of Acts chapter 2 only listened to and spoke the tongue of God (Matt 6:22, totally focused on God) while the Holy Spirit sat upon and within them, to the absolute exclusion of all other things of this experiential world. These students definitely pay attention in class. And they spoke the Word of God. So will you.
*But as the days of Noah were, SO SHALL ALSO [future tense; phrase spoken twice] the [second] coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark [tabernacle, Jesus Christ], AND [the people] KNEW NOT until the flood [of Atonement] came, AND TOOK THEM ALL AWAY; SO SHALL ALSO [future tense; double emphasis] the [second] coming of the Son of man be [and Noah and his family did not leave this earth]. (Matt 24:37-39)
*And as it was in the days of Noah [eight people enraptured: a new beginning; overcomer company, an hundredfold, shepherds], SO SHALL IT BE ALSO in the days of the Son of man. They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah ENTERED INTO THE ARK [spiritually enraptured, raised up], and the flood came, and DESTROYED them all. LIKEWISE also as it was IN THE DAYS OF LOT [a Christian dwelling in the Babylonian church, a sheep]; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; BUT THE SAME DAY [of Atonement] that Lot WENT OUT OF SODOM [the Babylonian church, not up to heaven but to Zoar on earth and then up into a cave] it rained [Holy Spirit] fire and brimstone [Rev 19:20] from heaven, and DESTROYED THEM ALL. Even THUS SHALL IT BE [future tense] in the day [of Atonement] when the Son of man [Rev 14:1, Sons of God company] is REVEALED [in us: Rom 8:18,19]. (Luke 17:26-30).
*The RIGHTEOUS shall inherit the land, and dwell therein FOREVER. (Psalm 37:29)
*For the UPRIGHT shall dwell in the land, and the PERFECT shall REMAIN in it. But the wicked shall be CUT OFF from the earth, and the transgressors shall be ROOTED out of it. (Prov 2:21,22)
*And this word, YET ONCE MORE, signifieth the REMOVING OF THOSE THINGS THAT ARE SHAKEN, as of things that are made [by men], THAT THOSE THINGS WHICH CANNOT BE SHAKEN [made by God] MAY REMAIN. (Heb 12:27)
God flat-out tells us that the righteous, upright saints made perfect by Him are not going to be removed from this earth. Don't argue with me. I didn't say it. God said it. Nothing could be any plainer except a baseball bat between the eyes!! Nevertheless, we certainly don't want to hear that do we? It often seems that the things we don't want to hear are the very things that will effect the most change (Rom 12:2) upon our lives. We are still disobedient and rebellious children to varying degrees. Standard Babylonian church doctrine preaches "Peace and safety" (I Thess 5:3). They would have us believe that we will be raptured, i.e. taken out of this world immediately before the seven year tribulation. Look around you. Get real. Excluding God's Word, even by sight we can see that the tribulation has already started. Our perfect example is Gideon:
*And the children of Israel DID EVIL in the sight of the LORD: and the LORD DELIVERED THEM into the hand of Midian SEVEN YEARS. (Jud 6:1)
PEACE AND SAFETY
To the contrary, if we believed that we were about to experience the tribulation, the churches would be overflowing, the Gospel would be continuously and fervently preached, and we would every single one be living as good soldiers in the army of God (II Tim 2:3,4,15). We would be studying, searching and seeking the face of God. This is God's Will but it is not happening. Who do you suppose will be held responsible for the blood of the children of Israel who do "evil in the sight of the Lord?" (Ezek 13:3,10,16,22). Friend, if I am in error and you who preach and teach and you who believe in pre-tribulation rapture are correct, then we will both have a good laugh about it in heaven. If I am correct and you are in error, you are in deep trouble.
*And the woman fled into the wilderness [out of the tabernacle east of Jordan to Ammon, Moab or Edom: Dan 11:41], where SHE HATH A PLACE PREPARED OF GOD, that THEY SHOULD FEED HER THERE a thousand two hundred and threescore days [3 1/2 years]. (Rev 12:6)
*And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he PERSECUTED the woman which brought forth the man child. And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, WHERE SHE IS NOURISHED for a time, and times, and half a time [3 1/2 years], from the face of the serpent. (Rev 12:13,14)
The army of men that Satan sends in pursuit of the woman will be swallowed up by the continental rift running through the valley of the river Jordan:
*And the serpent cast out of his mouth water [an army of men] as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. And the earth helped the woman, and THE EARTH OPENED HER MOUTH [Num 16:32; Deut 11:6], and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth. (Rev 12:15,16)
In desperation, frustration and anger, Satan will turn to make war with the remnant of the woman's seed who are the thirtyfold overcomers of the tabernacle church.
*And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which KEEP [Luke 8:15] THE COMMANDMENTS of God, and HAVE THE TESTIMONY of Jesus Christ. (Rev 12:17)
Alas, this action against the remnant of her seed will avail Satan nothing for these "keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ." As are the woman and the man child, these too are overcomers. These three companies, as are in type the three companies of Gideon's 300, have "overcome the wicked one" (I John 2:14) and thereby entered into the tabernacle. Although both the woman and the remnant of her seed return from the tabernacle into the wilderness for three and one-half years after the birth of the man child, they are overcomers and Satan cannot overcome overcomers.
COURTYARD: THE BABYLONIAN CHURCH
*Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I WILL PUNISH ALL THEM WHICH ARE CIRCUMCISED WITH THE UNCIRCUMCISED; Egypt [unsaved: soul], and JUDAH [saved: spirit], and Edom [flesh: body], and the children of Ammon [incestuous: saved mingling with unsaved in Babylonian church], and Moab [incestuous: saved mingling with unsaved in Babylonian church], and all that are in the utmost corners, THAT DWELL IN THE WILDERNESS [then greatly expanded to include all the world except the promised land]: for all these nations are uncircumcised, and ALL THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL ARE UNCIRCUMCISED IN THE HEART. (Jer 9:25,26)
Please note that this entire group of Christians remaining east of Jordan are distinctly divided in type into two sub-groups. Neither of these sub-groups crossed the Jordan into the tabernacle church. One Christian sub-group is the 9,700 who supported Gideon's 300 by giving of their food: "victuals" (Jud 7:8). The 9,700 also supported the overcomers in warfare as they joined the 300 in pursuit of the Midianite host in the wilderness (Jud 7:23). The other Christian sub-group is the men of the city of Succoth who permanently dwelt east of Jordan (see map page 133). The men of Succoth refused to give Gideon's 300 "loaves of bread" (Jud 8:5) and to give any military support. Both of these Christian sub-groups will receive of the plagues of the Babylonian church.
The elders and men of Succoth who refused to support the overcomer body will receive an additional treatment which denotes exactly what they have become and where they have stopped in their walk with the Lord. Gideon "took the elders of the city, and thorns of the wilderness and briers, and with them he taught the men of Succoth." (Jud 8:16). Gideon killed the men on the stony ground of Penuel (unsaved). Then he gathered (Jud 8:14, Matt 13:30, picked out) the elders (James 3:1) of Succoth and thorns and briers of the wilderness and bound them all three together into a bundle. With this bundle he "taught" the men of Succoth. Saints will be "taught" by the bundles. He taught them in the way that they could receive and understand. What did he teach them? The principal of life in Christ Jesus is giving.
*And it was given unto him [corporate antichrist] to make war with the [courtyard] SAINTS, and to OVERCOME them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations. (Rev 13:7)
We notice in verification of Revelation 18:4 and Jeremiah 9:25,26 that the whole group of saved "saints" of God, "my people," here in Revelation 13:7 are lumped in with the unsaved "kindreds, and tongues, and nations." They are all disobedient and rebellious children to varying degrees.
*And there was given me a reed [Gr: pen] like unto a ROD [Ex 4:2; Rev 2:27]: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the [golden] altar, AND THEM THAT WORSHIP THEREIN [inside the tabernacle church]. But the COURT [courtyard church] which is without the temple LEAVE OUT, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles [non-believers]: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months [3 1/2 years]. (Rev 11:1,2)
THE MIND OF CHRIST
THE SOWER SOWETH THE WORD
The thorny ground is beyond the cross but still in the wilderness court and extends up to the Jordan river. This is where spiritual warfare takes place in our walk. Spiritual warfare is internal and as such is conducted by spirits rather than men who got their shot at us back on the stony ground.
*And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things ENTERING IN, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful. (Mark 4:19)
The "cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things" are three demonic spirits who enter into our minds and deceive us. They "choke the word." To choke means to suffocate. The Word is spiritual. Therefore, if they are able to choke the Word which is spiritual, they also must be spiritual. This brings up an interesting topic. The Holy spirit is water. Unclean demonic spirits seek dry places to dwell, and are therefore adverse to wet places, i.e. the Holy Spirit. That makes sense to me. When Jesus allowed Legion to enter into the unclean swine He knew what was about to happen:
*And the unclean spirits went out [of the man], and ENTERED INTO the swine: and the herd ran VIOLENTLY down a steep place into the sea, (they were about two thousand;) and were CHOKED in the sea. (Mark 5:13)
We note that the unclean spirits "entered into" the swine as spirits will do. Now it gets interesting. I would like to see someone or something run "violently." How does one run violently? Fast, speedily, quickly, rapidly, briskly, swiftly, etc., etc., I understand. These are all objective observations and descriptions of running related to speed. Violently is very subjective with heavy emotional connotations unrelated to speed. From this we are led to believe that the swine were under heavy emotional duress. In violent emotional opposition to the desires and strong urgings of the demonic spirits the swine suicided. Swine are very intelligent. They did not want the demons to dwell inside them so they, the swine, exercised their volition and suicided. There are a number of points to this episode. One point is that whether it be a man or animal inhabited by demons, that inhabited creature still has volition. There are no biblical examples of full demonic possession except the corporate antichrist beast of 666. Six is the number of a man (Rev 13:18). Satan will fully possess and inhabit this antichrist beast of corporate men in body 6, in soul 6, and in spirit 6. Satan will do so in direct imitation of the Sons of God corporate body of Christ which will be fully influenced and inhabited by Christ Jesus in spirit 7, in soul 7, and in body 7. The number 1 (God) + 6 (man) = 7 which is the number of completion: the completed work, the Sons of God body with the Lamb as head, the 777 Man.
Another point is that the swine were choked by the water, i.e. suffocated. Death by suffocation is an unclean death for an animal that we eat because the blood is not let into the earth (Lev 17:13,14; John 19:34). It is strangulation. Hanging from a tree is an unclean death (Deut 21:22,23;Gal 3:13). Drowning is an unclean death. Who was suffocated? Well, for sure the swine were suffocated but the verse quoted has two subjects: the unclean spirits and the swine. The unclean spirits were also choked, suffocated, by the water of the Holy Spirit and were compelled to enter into the abyss from which there is no outlet. They choke the Word out of us, and the Word chokes them out of us. Spiritual warfare. Unclean spirits in unclean animals underwent an unclean death.
We have been and are always soldiers. We are traitors. We have deserted the ranks of the army of Satan in the land of Egypt and enlisted in the army of God. The Egyptians angrily pursued us to the Red Sea which is the outer perimeter of God's army. They halted there on the shore of the sea knowing that for them to pursue us any farther is to die (water and blood). Now we are new enlistees in the army of God. We must be humbled and proven (Deut 8:2) so that we can be trusted as good soldiers who will obediently carry out the commands of God. These commands are issued through our ranking officers (I Pet 5:5,6). Training school consists of study (II Tim 2:15) and on-the-job training.
Our first major battlefield experience occurs when we are suddenly attacked by Satan's army of other men for our allegiance to God. We are seemingly surrounded by the enemy as they persecute us from all directions. We are beset and afflicted with trials and sorely distressed with many tribulations. Our army suffers great casualties. Nevertheless, we endure to the end (Matt 24:13). Facing intense peer-group intimidation and overwhelming numerical superiority we are miraculously led through the enemy forces to victory by the Sword of the Lord. The second major battle occurs as we continue to advance deeply into enemy held territory toward our objective. Our objective is the promised land across the Jordan river. However, between the Jordan and our present position are numerous heavily defended enemy strongholds which block our advance. These strongholds must be eliminated and the territory reclaimed for God if we are to advance.
The defending enemy army is a host of invisible demons. This army is a much more formidable opponent than their human predecessors who were openly hostile and could be seen. This demonic army is sly, subtle and insidious. Rather than wildly attacking, these have a strategy and employ tactics to their advantage. They will viciously defend their entrenched fortresses at any cost. These are a dedicated totally committed battle-hardened corps of guerrilla troops. In this type of warfare there are few massed frontal assaults. However, our advancing army is constantly besieged by penetrating fire from hidden snipers. The enemy exercises a multitude of flanking maneuvers designed to distract, divert, divide and otherwise block and draw our attention away from focusing on any sustained advance toward our objective. They are invisible and thus can infiltrate our army and impersonate our officers with ease. These impersonators are consummate deceivers who issue conflicting and erroneous orders causing tremendous confusion in the ranks. The behind-the-lines supply and support troops are the crucial backbone of our army. Without the sheep, the shepherd perishes. The infiltrators sabotage our support group with false information and character assassination which produces dissatisfaction and murmuring. An army in disarray is not an army, it is a rabble. This is the battlefield of the Babylonian church in the wilderness of the tabernacle court. Each of us who desires to be a good soldier of God must persevere and learn how to overcome the obstacles on this battlefield that we may advance through it by overcoming our adversaries. Few make it all the way through the wilderness battlefield into the tabernacle church. This is the prize of the High Calling in Christ Jesus. Howbeit, some must enter therein. Praise God.
THE TABERNACLE CHURCH
That is it. That is pretty simple isn't it? Not fruit, fruit, and more fruit. Father God is Farmer God. He seeded His crop in Genesis. God prunes every branch that bears "not fruit" off the vine and casts it into the fire. He cleans every branch that bears "fruit" of its undesirable branches that the life-bearing sap of the vine not be diverted or diluted. This concentrates the sap in the fruit bearing branch that it may bring forth "more fruit."
*I am the vine, ye are the branches: he that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth MUCH FRUIT: for without me ye can do nothing. Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear MUCH FRUIT; so shall ye be my disciples. (John 15:5,8)
There are three different degrees of fruit bearing: fruit, more fruit, much fruit. The fruit of God can only be borne on good ground. This was taught by Jesus who spoke of those on stony ground who "fall away" (Luke 8:13). He next spoke of those on thorny ground who "bring no fruit to perfection" (Luke 8:14), and "becometh unfruitful" (Matt 13:22;Mark 4:19).
Good ground is inside the tabernacle church, exclusively. Here is fruit: thirtyfold, sixtyfold, an hundredfold. Fruit, more fruit, much fruit. The remnant of her seed, the woman, the man child.
*THESE THINGS HAVE I SPOKEN UNTO YOU, THAT MY JOY MIGHT REMAIN IN YOU, AND THAT YOUR JOY MIGHT BE FULL. (John 15:11)