PROPHETIC CALL THROUGH A VISION
Yeshua haMashiach/Jesus Christ said: "All things are delivered to me of my Father: and no man knoweth who the Son is, but the Father; and who the Father is, but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him." (Luke 10:22)
Prophets of God were called seers (1 Samuel 9:19) and they were not honoured in their own country. (Matthew 13:57) When the prophet Jeremiah was instructed by the Lord to prophesy against the inhabitants of the very city of his birth, they reviled him terribly. (Jer 11:21-23) Prophets received compensation at times, but also refused gifts if they discerned that these were not given in the appropriate spirit. Prophets officiated at the installation of kings. (I Kings 1:32-35) And they became the counsellors of kings. (I Kings 22:6-28)During the reign of Jehoiakim, son of Josiah (640-609), the king burned the scroll of Jeremiah (605 B.C.). Following this outbreak of anger on the part of Jehoiakim, Jeremiah again had Baruch to take a scroll and rewrite the words of the Lord (36:32). DIVINE DISCLOSURES: THE REVELATION OF GOD UNDER THE OLD & NEW COVENANTS Jeremiah in the encounter with the Lord in which he was called said: ‘“Ah, Sovereign LORD’” I said, ‘I do not know how to speak; I am only a child’” (Jeremiah 1:6). One may not be proficient at public speaking, but God can still use this person to accomplish His ends. God is not simply concerned about the powerful and the famous. It is in this vein that Moses addresses the children of Israel: “The LORD did not set his affection on you and choose you because you were more numerous than other peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples” (Deuteronomy 7:7). The Apostle Paul, too, in writing his first letter to Corinth, calls attention to their social status prior to their acceptance of God’s call. The earmark of the true prophet under the Old Covenant as Jeremiah states, was that they stood in divine council. (Jeremiah 23:18) In the New Covenant, on the Day of Pentecost, God caught up the entire church into His divine council. The church in that day was comprised of Jews from every nation under heaven, and salvation was later extended to the Gentiles as well, so that every believer has access to the throne of God. By the writing of the Messages to the 7 Churches of Asia, there was already a great falling away of the faith. The Apostle Paul warned of grevious wolves who would not spare the flock. (Rev 2-3 ) For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.(Acts 120:29) Where was the True Church of Yeshua haMashiach/Jesus Christ when Emperor Constantine paid the way of 317 bishops at the Council of Nicea in 325 A.D? A council that left out the Messianic Jewish brethren to whom the word was first preached? And lauded a man who was a notable murderer according to church history and allowed him to preside over them, provide free lunch and accomodations? Paul in reiterating his new birth said: But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace, 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. 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. (Galatians 1:15-17) CALLED THROUGH A VISION FROM THE LORD: Jeremiah received his call about 627 B.C. He was called to the prophetic office through a vision. (Jer. 1:4-10) Jeremiah who himself was called into prophetic ministry in chapter 1,by a vision from the Lord, stands at the gate and calls forth a holy remnant from among a people otherwise destined for destruction. Jeremiah 7:1 The word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying: 2 Stand in the gate of the LORD's house, and proclaim there this word, and say, Hear the word of the LORD, all ye of Judah, that enter in at these gates to worship the LORD. Those whom Jeremiah addresses came through the gate leading into the court of the women, and the gate leading into the outer court, or court of the Gentiles ("these gates"). The gate was the place in which the multitudes from the country would hear his message. His life was threatened, it appears from Jer 26:1-9, for this prophecy, denouncing the fate of Shiloh as about to befall the temple at Jerusalem. The prophecy given in detail here is summarily referred to there. After Josiah's death the nation relapsed into idolatry through Jehoiakim's bad influence; the worship of Jehovah was, however, combined with it (Jer 7:4, 10). On the Day of Pentecost, as God was about to pour out of His Spirit upon all flesh in fulfillment of biblical prophecy, again, this had everything to do with divine revelation. The focus was the Revelation of Jesus Christ/Yeshua haMashiach. The hearers were commanded to enter in by faith into the prophetic fulfillment of what God was ushering in. This would begin for every individual, with repentance, water baptism by immersion in Yeshua/Jesus holy name, and the receiving of the gift of the Holy Spirit, and this would forever be termed "The Call."
38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Yeshua haMashiach/Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.” (Acts 2:38-39)
JUDGMENT BEGINS AT THE HOUSE OF GOD The judgment on the seven churches of Asia remind us of Jesus' teaching concerning the judgment.
Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. (Matthew 7:21-23)
DWELLING IN GOD & GOD IN YOU The Epistle of John speaks again and again of our dwelling in God, and of God dwelling in us. Jeremiah 7:3 Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place. i.e. Allow or permit you still to dwell ( Jeremiah 18:11 , 26:13 ). Jeremiah 7:4 Trust ye not in lying words, saying, The temple of the LORD, The temple of the LORD, The temple of the LORD, are these. The Jews falsely thought that because their temple had been chosen by Jehovah as His peculiar dwelling, it could never be destroyed. Men think that ceremonial observances will supersede the need of holiness ( Isaiah 48:2 , Micah 3:11 ). Jeremiah 7:5 For if ye throughly amend your ways and your doings; if ye throughly execute judgment between a man and his neighbour; Jeremiah 7:6 If ye oppress not the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, and shed not innocent blood in this place, neither walk after other gods to your hurt: ...This place-this city and land (Jer 7:7). According to II Kings 21:16, "Moreover, Manasseh shed very much innocent blood until he had filled Jerusalem from one end to another." Early in his reign Jehoiakim had done the same type of thing by having the prophet Uriah put to death. Jeremiah 7:7 Then will I cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers, for ever and ever. THE LORD EXPOUNDS ON THE SINS COMMITTED Jeremiah 7:8 Behold, ye trust in lying words, that cannot profit. The lying words they trusted in were claims that by maintaining the temple worship they would be protected from all evil. God rebukes the erroneous claims of the liars and His people's misplaced sense of confidence that the merit of the Temple would somehow prevent His wrath against their unacceptable behavior. Jeremiah 7:9 Will ye steal, murder, and commit adultery, and swear falsely, and burn incense unto Baal, and walk after other gods whom ye know not...In verse 9 God listed six violations of the Ten Commandments. Jeremiah 7:10 And come and stand before me in this house, which is called by my name, and say, We are delivered to do all these abominations? WHERE IS THE PLACE OF MY REST? Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest?(Isaiah 66:1) And said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves.(Matthew 21:13) Jeremiah 7:11 Is this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your eyes? Behold, even I have seen it, saith the LORD. Do you regard My temple as being what robbers make their den, namely, an asylum wherein ye may obtain impunity for your abominations (Jer 7:10)? God's House is no asylum where people can obtain impunity for their abominations. ( Jeremiah 7:10 ) Jeremiah 7:12 But go ye now unto my place which was in Shiloh, where I set my name at the first, and see what I did to it for the wickedness of my people Israel. Yeshua haMashiach/Jesus Christ promised that He would give rest to those who were weary and heavy laden. Spiritual rest is not lying down to take a nap. God didn’t rest on the seventh day because He was tired. His rest was a cessation of labor. Rest is the opposite of labor or striving. The true rest Messiah promised is found in relationship with haMashiach/Christ. Resting in Him is peace, joy, healing, and the provision God promised for all of our needs. Yeshua/Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith (Heb 12:2). Spiritual rest is Looking unto Yeshua/Jesus the author and finisher of [our] faith. Heb. 12:2. “Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them; but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.” (Hebrews 4:1,2) THE FORSAKING AT SHILOH BECAUSE OF SIN Jeremiah 7:13 And now, because ye have done all these works, saith the LORD, and I spake unto you, rising up early and speaking, but ye heard not; and I called you, but ye answered not; Shiloh was the place where God first give Israel the pledges of His holy presence. Yet He forsook Shiloh, and Shiloh became the symbol of shame and contempt. In the days of Jeremiah Shiloh was a ruin. At Shiloh, the "whole congregation of Israel assembled...and set up the tabernacle of the congregation...", (Joshua 18:1) being the tent built under Moses' direction to house the ark. Samuel was raised in Shiloh by the high priest Eli, and began prophesying at a young age, continuing to serve in the Tabernacle, but not as a priest because he was not from the family of Aaron. The Divine Presence in the Ark of the Covenant was reduced to an amulet or a “good luck charm”, in their eyes. When the house of Eli sinned and acted corruptly, the ark of the Lord was lost to the Philistines; what should stop God from acting in the same way again? Shiloh is mentioned in the Hebrew Bible as an assembly place for the people of Israel where there was a sanctuary containing the Ark of the Covenant until it was taken by the Philistines from the battlefield at Aphek. The tabernacle was removed before the Philistines arrived, and it was shipped to Gibeon, where it remained until Solomon's time. The Ark was soon returned to Israel, but was subsequently kept in Kiryat-Yearim until David had it brought to Jerusalem. It never returned to Shiloh. The site of ancient Shiloh, a city in the Ephraim hill-country and the religious capital of Israel in the time of the Judges, is situated north of Beth-El, east of the Beth El-Shechem highway and south of Lebonah in the hill-country of Ephraim (Judg. 21:19). Jeremiah 7:14 Therefore will I do unto this house, which is called by my name, wherein ye trust, and unto the place which I gave to you and to your fathers, as I have done to Shiloh. FRUITFUL I WILL MAKE YOU "I will make you exceedingly fruitful, and I will make nations of you, and kings will come forth from you. (Genesis 17:6) God's initial purpose for mankind, originated with his declaration to Adam and his wife Eve in Eden. "And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth." Ephraim, to whom the Prophet speaks in Jeremiah 7, depicts Israel as God's vintage. He was the second son of Joseph by his Egyptian wife Asenath. His name means, "doubly fruitful." Joseph believed that God had caused him to be fruitful in the land of his affliction. Ephraim was also adopted by his grandfather Jacob and given a blessing as one of his sons. At Jacob's deathbed blessing of his sons he placed his hand on Ephraim, the second son of Joseph, first because Ephraim descendants would be more important than Manasseh's. Eventually his thousands of descendents settled in the land of Canaan as one of the most numerous of the tribes of Israel. They located in the central hill country south of Shechem and extended into the coastal plains. See Genesis 41:52; 46:20; 48:1-20; 50:23; Numbers 26:28; Deuteronomy 33:17; 1 Chronicles 7:20-22. The Prophet Jeremiah rebukes those who refuse God's call to be fruitful in every good work, in Jeremiah 7:15: And I will cast you out of my sight, as I have cast out all your brethren, even the whole seed of Ephraim. Furthermore, the Lord instructs the Prophet not to bring this people before His face anymore. Jeremiah 7:16 Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to me: for I will not hear thee. JOY IN GOD'S HOUSE OVER ONE SINNER THAT REPENTS Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth. (Luke 15:10) Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the Lord your God: for he hath given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month. (Joel 2:23) Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the Lord: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth. (Hosea 6:3) Ask ye of the Lord rain in the time of the latter rain; so the Lord shall make bright clouds, and give them showers of rain, to every one grass in the field. (Zechariah 10:1) Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. (James 5:7) In Joel chapter 2 God prophesied of a future day, in which we now live and every individual may avail him or herself of God's prophetic plan and purpose. "And I will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten, the cankerworm, and the caterpiller, and the palmerworm, my great army which I sent among you." Coming of the Holy Spirit 1 When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord[a] in one place. 2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. THE RESPONSE And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit...(Ephesians 5:18) Acts 2:5 And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven. 6 And when this sound occurred, the multitude came together, and were confused, because everyone heard them speak in his own language. 7 Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans? 8 And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born? 9 Parthians and Medes and Elamites, those dwelling in Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya adjoining Cyrene, visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, 11 Cretans and Arabs—we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.” 12 So they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “Whatever could this mean?” 13 Others mocking said, “They are full of new wine.” GOD'S PROPHETIC CALL TO ALL Acts 2:14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said to them, “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words. 15 For these are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. 16 But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: 17 ‘ And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams. 18 And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; And they shall prophesy. 19 I will show wonders in heaven above And signs in the earth beneath: Blood and fire and vapor of smoke. 20 The sun shall be turned into darkness, And the moon into blood, Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the LORD. 21 And it shall come to pass That whoever calls on the name of the LORD Shall be saved.’ 22 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know— 23 Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death; 24 whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it. 25 For David says concerning Him: ‘ I foresaw the LORD always before my face, For He is at my right hand, that I may not be shaken. 26 Therefore my heart rejoiced, and my tongue was glad; Moreover my flesh also will rest in hope. 27 For You will not leave my soul in Hades, Nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption. 28 You have made known to me the ways of life; You will make me full of joy in Your presence.’ 29 “Men and brethren, let me speak freely to you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. 30 Therefore, being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that of the fruit of his body, according to the flesh, He would raise up the Christ to sit on his throne,[e] 31 he, foreseeing this, spoke concerning the resurrection of the Christ, that His soul was not left in Hades, nor did His flesh see corruption. 32 This Jesus God has raised up, of which we are all witnesses. 33 Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He poured out this which you now see and hear. 34 “For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he says himself: ‘ The LORD said to my Lord, “ Sit at My right hand, 35 Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.”’ 36 “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” 37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” 38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.” And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. (Revelation 21:5) Have you made a decision to live your life in response to the gospel? THERE ARE THOSE WHO SEE THE GOSPEL MESSAGE AS FOOLISHNESS (
I Corinthians 1:18-2:5) In verse 18 Paul describes two kinds of people; or two responses to the gospel message: a) The Gospel is the power of God for salvation: This view begins with belief in the foundational truth that God created the world. It sees that God is involved with His creation and has entered the world in the person of Yeshua haMashiach/Jesus Christ and has revealed Himself in and through the holy scriptures. Paul goes on to say: "When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. 2 For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. 3 I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. 4 My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, 5 so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power. Christ has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. (I Corinthians 1:30) b) For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. In verse 20 Paul asks a simple question about the Saviour rejecting worldview: “Where has it gotten you?” In what way has ungodliness advanced the world? 20 Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? Paul wanted the people to see that the ways of the world don’t lead anywhere. Solomon discovered the emptiness of this secular view of the world. He wrote in the book of Ecclesiastes, 16 I thought to myself, “Look, I have grown and increased in wisdom more than anyone who has ruled over Jerusalem before me; I have experienced much of wisdom and knowledge.” 17 Then I applied myself to the understanding of wisdom, and also of madness and folly, but I learned that this, too, is a chasing after the wind. (Ecclesiastes 1:16-17) Knowing God takes more than an intellectual understanding. As at Pentecost, it comes through the Revelation of the Yeshua haMashiach/the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul claims not only his revelation of Messiah was considered by him an incredible supernatural event, but his mission even came by revelation from God, as he had a divine encounter with the Lord God Almighty, who spoke to him from the excellent glory, identifying himself as Yeshua haMashiach. 1Meanwhile, Saul was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord's disciples. He went to the high priest 2and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found any there who belonged to the Way, whether men or women, he might take them as prisoners to Jerusalem. 3As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. 4He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, "Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?" 5"Who are you, Lord?" Saul asked. "I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting," he replied. 6"Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do." 7The men traveling with Saul stood there speechless; they heard the sound but did not see anyone. 8Saul got up from the ground, but when he opened his eyes he could see nothing. So they led him by the hand into Damascus. 9For three days he was blind, and did not eat or drink anything. 10In Damascus there was a disciple named Ananias. The Lord called to him in a vision, "Ananias!" "Yes, Lord," he answered. 11The Lord told him, "Go to the house of Judas on Straight Street and ask for a man from Tarsus named Saul, for he is praying. 12In a vision he has seen a man named Ananias come and place his hands on him to restore his sight." 13"Lord," Ananias answered, "I have heard many reports about this man and all the harm he has done to your saints in Jerusalem. 14And he has come here with authority from the chief priests to arrest all who call on your name." 15But the Lord said to Ananias, "Go! This man is my chosen instrument to carry my name before the Gentiles and their kings and before the people of Israel. 16I will show him how much he must suffer for my name." 17Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, "Brother Saul, the Lord—Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here—has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit." 18Immediately, something like scales fell from Saul's eyes, and he could see again. He got up and was baptized, 19and after taking some food, he regained his strength. (Acts 9) Paul had desired to know the True and Living God. But he'd stumbled at the stumbling stone. Though zealous or possibly jealous, he was operating in a wrong spirit, opposing Messiah and killing Yeshua's own followers. When Paul believed on the Lord Jesus Christ then, and only then was he saved. (Acts 16:31) He believed on Messiah, whom to know is life eternal. His faith was directed, and it rested in the express dimension in which haMashiach/Christ himself was revealed to Him, "not with the enticing words of man's wisdom but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power," (I Corinthians 2:4) and his life was totally and dramatically transformed. Paul proclaimed this in regard to the ministry entrusted to Him in haMashiach/Christ: "And my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God." 1 Corinthians 2:4-5 This life of His in haMashiach/Christ was the fulfillment of Messiah's own prayer: "Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth." (John 17:17) John 1:1-14 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. The Holy One made both Lord and Christ was revealed to John on the Isle of Patmos: Rev 1:8 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.
Apostle Paul who received his ministry by revelation wrote: And I went up by revelation, and communicated unto them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to them which were of reputation, lest by any means I should run, or had run, in vain. (Galatians 2:2)
17That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: Ephesians 1:18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, 19And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power, 20Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, 21Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: 22And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, 23Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all. Now is the appointed time..."Now is the day of salvation." (II Cor. 6:2)