""It will come about after this That I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind; And your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. "Even on the male and female servants I will pour out My Spirit in those days. "I will display wonders in the sky and on the earth, blood, fire and columns of smoke. "The sun will be turned into darkness and the moon into blood before the great and awesome day of the LORD comes. "And it will come about that whoever calls on the name of the LORD Will be delivered; For on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem There will be those who escape, As the LORD has said, Even among the survivors whom the LORD calls." Joe 2:28-32 (NASB)
We live in perilous times. Each week, we see greater and greater acts of injustice. Justice is one of the foundation stones of God’s authority in the Land. Like a blueprint for building a home, God has given us a living blueprint for the house of the Lord that He is building. One of the foundations is justice.
"Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; Lovingkindness and truth go before You." Psa 89:14 (NASB)
Justice comes from seeing how God sees and acting with that perspective. Our seeing is based on whose eyes are doing the seeing. At Shavuot-Pentecost the Holy Spirit was poured out on all mankind and those with the relationship of sons and daughters had their seeing transformed. We generally focus on the tongues, but the prophecy tells us that it is specifically the seeing that is transformed:
"'AND IT SHALL BE IN THE LAST DAYS,' God says, 'THAT I WILL POUR FORTH OF MY SPIRIT ON ALL MANKIND; AND YOUR SONS AND YOUR DAUGHTERS SHALL PROPHESY, AND YOUR YOUNG MEN SHALL SEE VISIONS, AND YOUR OLD MEN SHALL DREAM DREAMS;" Act 2:17 (NASB)
Both visions and dreams involve seeing. How we see things is determined by the expectations we have of reality and that in turn is impacted by what we believe, our faith. Most of us, in this highly personalized time, think of faith only in terms of how each of us thinks, feels, and lives in our relationship with God or what we believe about how things are. Yet our faith is more than personal experience or a set of inner dialogues we have with ourselves. Faith is also a force of the collective. It is a conversation in society. We only have to consider the conversation about the virus or the one now about the racial tensions to see how fast and how powerful the conversation sweeps through groups to understand that faith is bigger than any one of us.
At the same time faith is also truly personal. What voice we listen to can be chosen by each of us and can bring sobriety to the madness.
Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. (1Pe 5:8 NASB)
If we back up a few verses to the preparation instruction by Yeshua at Shavuot-Pentecost, we get a little more insight:
"until the day when He was taken up to heaven, after He had by the Holy Spirit given orders to the apostles whom He had chosen. To these He also presented Himself alive after His suffering, by many convincing proofs, appearing to them over a period of forty days and speaking of the things concerning the kingdom of God. Gathering them together, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for what the Father had promised, "Which," He said, "you heard of from Me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now."" Act 1:2-5 (NASB)
See this picture in your mind’s eye. Yeshua has been crucified and has resurrected and He is giving His most critical instructions prior to His ascension to the disciples who He has already said would do greater things than He did. He appears to them by many convincing proofs. What are the proofs about? That He is no longer dead! That the resurrection is real!
Then He speaks to them about what else? Things concerning the Kingdom of God. At that point in time, the only Kingdom of God that existed was Israel. And He tells them to go to Jerusalem and be immersed in the Holy Spirit.
So, we know that Shavuot-Pentecost is a designated time of immersion in the Ruach HaKodesh, the Holy Spirit, which was promised by the Father through the prophet Joel. If we read on Yeshua tells us what the purpose is and what our faith should be extended towards:
"So when they had come together, they were asking Him, saying, "Lord, is it at this time You are restoring the kingdom to Israel?" He said to them, "It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority; but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth."" Act 1:6-8 (NASB)
The disciples knew that the immersion in the Holy Spirit was a sign of the manifestation of the Kingdom to Israel. Remember that the Kingdom of God was Israel. Also notice that Yeshua doesn’t correct them as if there is another kingdom of God that doesn’t include the restoration of Israel. There was no other kingdom. The only possible restoration in the eyes or vision of the disciples was what had always been a sign of God’s forgiveness for Israel’s times of “doing what was right in their own eyes” that we see quoted in the first book of justice, the book of Judges, Sepher Shoftim.
"In those days there was no king in Israel; every man did what was right in his own eyes." Jdg 17:6 (NASB)
In Judges, we have a people with no king who struggle with obeying the King of kings. The outcome is a period that we will be seeing is very similar to our own. Today, I want to focus on Shavuot-Pentecost and the manifestation of the King’s kingdom. The outpouring of Shavuot was to bring power and to create witnesses. The witnesses were to act in Judea, Israel proper, Samaria, the land of intermarriage and to the remotest part of the earth, the habitations of the wild people, the gentiles.
What is a witness? A witness is one who has seen something. Witnessing is all about perspective. In particular, when we are speaking about justice, we require witnesses to justify a conclusion about the truth. What truth were these witnesses going to witness? Why did they need to be immersed in the Spirit and how is that connected to being witnesses of a King and His Kingdom?
Witnessing an experience is all based on perception. We all believe our perceptions, our “data” gathering to be objective. Yet most of us can easily recall an experience where we were “sure” that something was a particular way and yet after speaking with other folks, came to the realization that how we “saw” things were incorrect or at best partially correct. The Apostle Paul spoke about this is the context of the most important aspect of our lives, love.
For we know in part and we prophesy in part; but when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away. When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known. (1Co 13:9-12 NASB)
With respect to justice, our perspective as a witness is essential. The disciples were receiving the power and anointing of the Holy Spirit to witness about the kingdom and the king. The essential ingredient of effective witnessing is to actually know what happened or to know who happened. The disciples, and we as disciples need the Baptism of the Holy Spirit not just so we can have a heavenly language or even operate in the gifts of the Spirit, as wonderful as those things are but to truly be able to witness from a place of knowing.
I believe that is what full knowing is about. It requires a truly intimate experience of that which we are witnessing about. It is also transformative, a merging of identities. We can witness externally, what we call being objective or we can witness internally, what we call being subjective. Culturally, we favor objectivity or what we call being impartial. Yet the Lord who is love values internal witnessing which He calls Love.
But the LORD said to Samuel, "Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart."(1Sa 16:7 NASB)
The true purpose of Shavuot-Pentecost is a heart invasion, a love takeover. Yes, there is power. Our God is mighty and wants us to work the miracles of His Nature int our lives and the lives of those we witness to. BUT more importantly in the courts of human hearts, where the true judgments occur, He wants us to know His love.
Now, let's look at the numerology of it all. Pentecost, 50 or Shavuot seven times seven plus one. 50 is the number of Jubilee. Yoval in Hebrew. The word Yoval means a joyful return.
'You shall thus consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim a release through the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you, and each of you shall return to his own property, and each of you shall return to his family. (Lev 25:10 NASB)
This is a built-in correction for greed in the heart of man. What is the root of greed or mammon? Shavuot-Pentecost, the fiftieth day is an outpouring that brings justice and equality.
The outpouring of the Holy Spirit allows for a shift in the heart that flows out of the mouth with oneness. The manifestation of tongues at Shavuot was not about generating a mysterious “unknown” language as a goal. It instead was about breaking down divisions and showing God’s love through justice and mercy, a return to love.
When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance. Now there were Jews living in Jerusalem, devout men from every nation under heaven. And when this sound occurred, the crowd came together, and were bewildered because each one of them was hearing them speak in his own language. They were amazed and astonished, saying, "Why, are not all these who are speaking Galileans? "And how is it that we each hear them in our own language to which we were born? (Act 2:1-8 NASB)
The gift of languages, other tongues was a miracle of jubilee, a return to oneness, to a breakdown of the separation that came from the dispersion of Israel. The dispersion was a result of Israel struggling to be one and so God dispersed them.
"The LORD will scatter you among the peoples, and you will be left few in number among the nations where the LORD drives you. "There you will serve gods, the work of man's hands, wood and stone, which neither see nor hear nor eat nor smell. "But from there you will seek the LORD your God, and you will find Him if you search for Him with all your heart and all your soul. "When you are in distress and all these things have come upon you, in the latter days you will return to the LORD your God and listen to His voice. (Deu 4:27-30 NASB)
We are in the latter days. We need a fresh Shavuot-Pentecost. We need a revival of the listening to the Voice of the Lord in our hearts to restore His authority in our land which rests on the foundation stone of justice. Justice does not come through violence and oppression. Those who live by the sword die by the sword. God is calling forth intercessors, gap standers who will receive His fresh outpouring.
Activation: Let’s press in for a fresh immersion in His Spirit and Fire. There is an unholy fire sweeping our land. We need a true fire that brings oneness and unity and justice.
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