The Changing Church Part 3 of 8
Spread upon many hills, lie God’s people—in tents and under the open sky—asleep, every one. It looked rather like an army camp sprawling largely under a dark night sky.
One notable fact about the vision at this point is that there is no light. No stars, no moon— only blackness. This condition is recorded in Scripture in Isaiah 13:10, “For the stars of heaven and the constellations thereof shall not give their light: the sun shall be darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine,” and in Joel 2:10, “. . . the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their shining.”
Could this be a part of what these two Old Testament prophets were seeing? Maybe a fragment!
Suddenly into the blackness walked Jesus. Isn’t that typical? He appears strongest when we are weak. The Lord’s face shines upon US in the darkness of despair, in the throes of depression, when the body is wracked with pain, and spiritually drained. We wait for Him:
Even though the night is dark,
Even though all hope depart,
There is light within.
However flickering and dim,
It goeth not out. It goeth not out.
The process of waiting does have its rewards, however. Isaiah 40:31 says: “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk and not faint.”
Strength is at a premium in the Church. Men and women of God, please be prompt in paying the cost for so needed an attribute and wait for it to develop. The wait is not forever. As we see, Jesus does finally appear. Change is the inevitable result. This is seen in the vision as our Lord moved among His people; His army. Shafts of light pierced the blackened sky as radiant beams from heaven were touching various men and women—setting them apart by means of God’s glory.
Those who were bathed in glory did not awake. Strange, I thought. You would imagine the intense light concentrated on an individual would, at the very least, startle him or her into alertness. It was to be a two-step process of arousal, however. After the luminary beams were activated, the Lord went directly to each one who was so marked, and laid His hands on every head. The process was quick and resulted in an immediate and dramatic awakening.
As the vision continued, Jesus gathered the ones He touched and placed them, men and women, in a circle. Once they were set, the Lord Himself stepped into the exact center and began to teach them as a group. An interesting thing about this group—there were exactly twelve.
Is this an expansion of what we already know? I believe so. Adding to the common thread of separation with the Church, we see new teaching by the Lord Jesus Christ; a very
intense, consuming, and direct instruction. Who, do you suppose, are being taught? The number twelve gives us a clue, since this is the number of governmental authority in the church. Perhaps, these are forerunning ministers, i.e., apostles and prophets who will herald the message all over the world that Jesus teaches to His body of believers.
How wonderful it will be to have leaders preaching exactly what our Lord has spoken! Can that happen? It can and it will—and we shall have gladness when it comes to pass!