ECHOES from EDEN, PART 26
END-TIME PROPHECY – TRUTH REVEALED
BY: J. PRESTON EBY
KINGDOM BIBLE STUDIES
"Teaching the things concerning the kingdom of God..."
THE GARMENTS of EDEN, (continued)
The Garments of Expression
The Garments of Protection
"And they were both naked, the man and his wife. and the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons. And, unto Adam and his wife did the Lord God make COATS OF SKINS, AND CLOTHED THEM."
What a blessed and thrilling revelation it has been to have the Spirit unfold the wonders of the Garden of Eden! All that now pertains, or shall ever pertain to man's relationship with God is there unveiled to the wondering eyes of our understanding. With the fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden, having disobeyed the command of God, and partaking of the forbidden fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, their eyes were opened, and they knew that they were naked and went and
"Unto Adam also and his wife did the Lord God make coats of skins, and clothed them."
We would be hard pressed to determine what kind of victim it was that provided this blessed covering, were it not that the Holy Spirit has shed precious light upon this wonder, revealing that CHRIST is
The skin with which God clothed Adam and Eve in Eden was the product of the life of God's precious Lamb. When they received these blessed garments upon them, they received something borne out of HIS LIFE, a very part of HIMSELF, the form and appearance of Himself generated by His life. More wonderful than news from a far country is the wonderful revelation with which He now floods our hearts, showing how He now clothes us with THE LAMB'S SKIN – the Lamb's own image, likeness, and identity.
We must once and for all settle it in our hearts that in all the world there is NO OTHER COVERING than that which God has Himself provided in our Lord Jesus Christ. We are living in days of extreme peril. The feverish activity of all the religious systems of earth is immense, but it is not motivated by the Spirit of God. This is a day of every imaginable spiritual deception. One of these many deceptions is described by the prophet Zephaniah in these words,
We hear much these days about having a "local group for a covering," whatever that is supposed to mean. Strange apparel, indeed! This so-called "truth" usually refers to a pseudo-spiritual submission to men calling themselves elders, or shepherds, who desire to lord it over a flock or other men's lives, and tell others what they can and cannot do. They esteem themselves spiritual enough to discern for everybody else what the will of the Lord is, though they themselves are missing the point entirely. My brother, my sister, hearken to the words of the prophet Isaiah:
COVERING! By many this term is used to mean that each believer, being a "dumb sheep," needs the "covering" or protection of a group, or fold, presided over by men who are "elders" or "shepherds". Every one is in "submission" to someone higher in the pyramid, until the whole structure becomes one vast hierarchy with just a few men or one man at the top. Each "shepherd" of a local group is "in submission" to some other higher "shepherd" and all these are ultimately submitted to an "apostle" somewhere in the world. Some rule more strictly than others over their "dumb sheep," but in general the individual believer is taught that he cannot trust his own ability to hear from the Lord, or understand the Word of God, or order his own life, but must look to his earthly shepherd to hear from the Lord for him. In many cases one dare not change jobs, move from one place to another, marry, or make any other decision without checking it out with the elder or elders. The counsel of the elder or shepherd in many cases MUST be followed! Women have often been told that they must always obey their husband's wishes, even if he requires something illegal or immoral! Some are instructed as to how much of their means to "give" to the "body".
Now, not all who teach "the covering" are that extreme, but for many of them the half has not been told. There is a great emphasis on the word "covering" as being necessary for each member, for protection from harm and deception. If we do not have this "covering" of the local fellowship, or elders, or shepherds, then, we are told, we cannot discern the will of the Lord, cannot understand the Word of the Lord, will be overcome by our adversary, will fall into sin and delusion, or the present world system will destroy us. Some groups across the country will not receive your ministry unless you reveal to them who your "covering" is.
I am frankly appalled at the shallowness, gullibility, and lack of spiritual discernment among the people of God, for they give heed continually to the voice of such strangers, but the voice of the Good Shepherd they do not know. Why are the children of God so ready to blindly accept every subtle and plausible teaching that is thrust at them, without earnestly seeking the help of the blessed Spirit WHO ALONE HAS BEEN SENT TO GUIDE US INTO ALL TRUTH. Any preacher today who can come up with some fantastic notion can corral God's people under his authority, and the more fantastic the notion the more people run after it. I do not hesitate to tell you that I know of no greater deception that has entered in among the people of God during the past twenty years than the error of the "covering" teaching.
Where, I ask, WHERE DOES THE SCRIPTURE GIVE EVIDENCE THIS APPLICATION OF THE WORD "COVERING" IS LEGITIMATE? I know of no place! Where in the Bible, I ask, is the husband called a "covering" for his wife? Where in the whole Bible are elders called a "covering" for the Church? In what place is the Church spoken of as a "covering" for believers? Where is the chapter and verse to be found that refers to an apostle as a "covering" for other ministries, elders, or shepherds? Where is the rule that a ministry should not be accepted unless he has some group or eldership for a "covering"? Ah, my friend, you may search for these long and hard, you may burn the midnight oil, you may read and study until your eyes are bloodshot and vision blurred, until you fall into fitful sleep with your Bible and reference books still open on the desk before you, and I can assure you without fear of contradiction that your most diligent and persistent efforts shall prove fruitless and in vain! We are blind readers indeed if we do not readily see that the fact of the matter is that the
The time has come when people no longer endure sound doctrine but are turned to fables. Many false Christs and false prophets and false forms of religion are going forth into all the world. Some time ago a dear sister stopped to visit with us for a few hours, and during the course of our conversation she asked a most momentous question. She wanted to know, in my opinion, what is the greatest danger present among God's people in this hour. I could only reply that the greatest danger I perceive today is that of God's saints being BROUGHT INTO BONDAGE TO MEN. And I will tell you frankly that there are a thousand and one different schemes and distortions of the Word of God continually being concocted by conniving and power-hungry preachers to bring the saints into bondage to men.
I speak the truth when I say it is high time for the people of God to begin to KNOW THE LORD FOR THEMSELVES. Let God's people come out from among them and begin to seek God, and walk with God, and know God, and search the scriptures for themselves, and GOD HIMSELF will be YOUR FATHER and you will sup with HIM and He with you. Let us ask the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and before we realize it we will find ourselves digging deep in the storehouse of God's treasures of wisdom and knowledge and sitting with Him at His banqueting table. He will spread a table before us in the presence of our enemies, He will lead us through green pastures; He will reveal to us fountains of living water flowing FROM WITHIN; He will cause us to rest beside cool, still streams; and HE, the Great Shepherd of the sheep will abide with us and our cup will overflow with the unspeakable riches of His grace and the wonder of His glorious and eternal reality.
Same Hebrew word is used when Aaron stripped the people of their ear-rings and jewels, and forged a golden calf. They were naked, not because they had given up their physical adornments of jewels, but because they were stripped of their faith and worship of the True God, and turned to the idolatry of a golden calf.
And so it is, when the Spirit of God does not quicken to us of HIS TRUTH to be our covering, we are left naked. For our vision, our revelation is our covering until it be brought into reality – then reality is our covering. And if we are GROWING IN HIM, it becomes obvious that we need a progressive revelation to cover our increased stature, lest on some point we reveal a nakedness. It is somewhat difficult to illustrate this, but we shall try. How often we have heard a person, preacher or otherwise, try to answer a question upon which they had no revelation. They stretched themselves out into a realm for which they had no covering, and simply exposed their nakedness in doing so. An honest gaze to another direction. But if I stutter and stammer and offer some scanty answer, it only serves to emphasize that I am naked on that point. Nor does it help to proceed into the depths of study with the natural man, to come up with some researched answer of the carnal mind. Only a revelation from above can clothe us, that the shame of our nakedness do not appear.
Because of the lack of revelation, and sending their state of nakedness, many people go looking for a covering, and when they see
The temptation remains very strong to this day. Even when God has called you onward, out of the religious systems of man, to go on with Him – and you feel so stripped of everything, and suddenly see, in somebody else’s tent, a goodly Babylonish garment, we are tempted to take it for our own clothing. But you cannot live on a borrowed revelation. This confusion of doctrine, all of the strange teachings, is only a self-evident token that we have stolen something which does not belong to us, something which we did not receive from God. We find it a constant source of amazement the “garments” which people take up with. They have not received it in a personal revelation, quickening of life from the Spirit of God, but they saw it, heard it, took it from somebody that was parading around in it, showing themselves off as a super-spiritual, clothed with a doctrine that nobody else has. They draw attention to themselves. But because it is “a covering,” people will envy them, and try to cover themselves with the same vision. Later on, if you challenge them about that so-called truth, examine it in the Light of The Word, prove it to be a product of carnal man, it adds to their shame because with its removal they again stand naked.
Our soul, the bride to be adorned
In garments He doth choose,
Till we are fully covered o’er, and
There’s naught to shame or bruise.
Such nakedness the world has seen,
As ritual, form, and creed
Exposed the flesh – professions failed
To hide self-thought and deed.
Men seek for covering, but not
The Christ to be their Head.
In blindness reach they out to grasp
A Babylon’s robe instead.
But there are those who seek the Lord
For garments to His praise,
His righteousness, His truth, His law
To undergird their days.
Put on thy garments, O my soul,
The hour draweth near,
The naked shall not see His face
When He doth soon appear.
– end quote
A dear brother
I feel to share further from
"The purpose of all ministry that proceeds from the exalted Christ is to so minister the Truth that the sheep of God's pasture might come into direct, unhindered personal union with the Lord. They make disciples FOR CHRIST, BUT NONE FOR THEMSELVES. In still another analogy, God's ministers are gardeners: those who plant the seed, or those who water the growing plant, or those who reap the harvest. They must not meddle with the seed, or with the growing plant. GOD is the REAL HUSBANDMAN, and He it is that giveth
Ah, yes, we do need a "covering"! The Spirit has revealed this over and over again in numerous ways, through types, and shadows, and forms, and inspired utterances through all His holy prophets since the day Adam and Eve were clothed in Eden's lovely Garden. One cannot help but notice with what emphasis the Lord declares that HE ALONE is the true covering and the true coverer:
God does use His people and His ministers to teach, and to minister one to another. We are always to esteem another better than ourselves. As we walk in the Spirit of Christ we will submit ourselves ONE TO ANOTHER, in honor preferring one another. The wife is to honor and respect her husband and the husband to love and cherish his wife. In the area of ministry, we are to know those who labor among us. We praise God for every ministry HE sets in the midst of the body of Christ, They are examples to the flock, and a source of encouragement, confirmation, and strength to all unto whom they are sent, we support and esteem them highly, and take heed when they admonish us in the Lord, but they are not, and never in a million years can they ever become, our "covering". Oh, child of God, I pray that the truth of these things will grip our heart! Let every saint of God RECOGNIZE THE LORD A-L-O-N-E AS THEIR COVERING!
Why, oh why, is it not possible for the Lord's people to see that any "covering" except THE LIFE OF THE LAMB is naught but withering fig-leaves which in due time fall away and fail to cover sufficiently, leaving the flesh exposed. To say that we need MEN, or ELDERS, or ANYONE AT ALL other than the Lord Jesus Christ to "cover" us will surely bring spiritual stagnation, or worse, spiritual death. Nothing will avail but the ANOINTING OF LIFE which comes alone from the Holy Spirit as we seek the Lord with all our hearts. The authority of men over men and over women is still being fought for very, very fiercely. Men simply will not let go of wanting to RULE OVER SOMEONE, for it is built right into the fleshly nature of the SELF. Yes, we need a covering, but it is not a group of men, however spiritual or well-intentioned they may be. After nearly fifty years of ministry among Spirit-filled saints I testify to you that never, in all these years, have I witnessed a quickening flow of HIS LIFE, never have I seen saints being truly conformed into the image of Christ, and never have I beheld sons coming to glory IN ANY GROUP where MEN OR ELDERS RULE OVER GOD'S PEOPLE OR BECOME A COVERING FOR THEM. They only bring horrible bondage and spiritual stagnation to themselves.
Invariably, in the history of God's dealings, the Lord's people have grown weary in pursuing the fullness of God for themselves, and as the vision grows dim before their drowsy eyes they become impatient in spirit and are willing to turn their walk with God into the hands of others whom they deem more capable than themselves to watch for their souls. This is what happened in the early days of Israel, after they had become settled in the land of their inheritance. God had been their Lord and King from the time He called them out of bondage, and drew them apart into a special relationship with Himself. But now in the time of Samuel they began to grow weary with it all, and desired a king, like the nations about them. How this grieved the heart of God! All along, and right from the beginning, their very existence as a nation was by reason of the fact that God longed for an inheritance of His own in a people that were separate from other people, and very much UNLIKE the nations. He desired to lead them, protect them, feed them, teach them, rule over them, bringing them into union with Himself, to walk in His truth, in His ways, in His holiness, in His life, clothed upon with the indescribable majesty of Himself – ONE WITH HIM in all things. "Make us a king!" they demanded of Samuel, "someone to go out before us, and to fight our battles for us." Pursuing the vision of God, and seeking out His will for our lives has become burdensome to many people. "Give us a leader," they clamour, "someone who will tell us what we are supposed to do, someone who will preach to us, study for us, pray for us, prophesy to us, find the will of God for us, marry us, bury us."
God will let them have it! If you want a covering other than Christ, God will let you have it. If you want men to rule over you, rather than learning to walk in a personal relationship with the Lord in the Spirit, you will get it! There are many around who would just love to RULE YOU! I can direct you to quite a number who would be delighted to become your COVERING! "Jonestown," with all its horrible extreme of the dominating authority of man, should be a warning example to all Christians who give blind obedience to their leaders or who are looking to man as their spiritual authority, instead of looking to the CHRIST WITHIN as the hope of glory. Any counsel or advice or supposed "Word of the Lord" through man MUST BE CONFIRMED TO OUR HEARTS before we accept it! If someone – even one you revere as a prophet – tells you that God wants you to do this or that conceiving an area wherein you (not that someone) have the RESPONSIBILITY for the action and its outcome, then politely listen, but do NOT do what they say. Wait for God to confirm the order through someone else and, more importantly, within your own heart and spirit. If there is no witness – no knowing within yourself – forget it!
"Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage, for, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another."
THE GARMENTS OF EXPRESSION
When Christ becomes our covering, Christ as the embodiment of God is wrought into us that we may know and experience HIM as life and as our all-in-all. The Lord must open our eyes and quicken our understanding to know these things. We cannot merely find a "church" pattern in the book of Acts, get a group of saints together, set up elders and deacons, call this the "church," and imagine God will use this contrivance to bring us into the glorious hope of sonship. First of all, this is not the church; this is an imitation of the church.
If we ask someone how he came into being and became such a tall, dark, and handsome fellow, he will tell us, "I was begotten by my father, born of my mother, I have eaten a lot of nourishing food, and I have grown up to such a height." We can manufacture a doll or a statue, but there is no way for us to manufacture a man. The church is a REAL MAN, the BODY OF THE CHRIST; no one can make a church! It must be something of new
For those apprehended to be the firstfruits unto God, being conformed to the image of Christ, no man can become their covering. If man is our covering, we will become the EXPRESSION OF MAN. Only Christ can be our covering, for every son of God must be only the expression of Christ Himself. I would point out here that all clothing fulfills three objectives for the wearer. First, the clothing covers and hides the flesh; second, it protects from the elements of sun, wind, cold, etc; third, clothing is a person's expression. What you wear on the outside expresses your personality and inner state of being. Many people spend a great deal of money, and select with great care each item in their wardrobe, paying meticulous attention to such matters as color, style, fit etc., with the one object of projecting their person in the most favorable or flattering light. One can appear either
Ah, Christ is to be not only our covering and our protection, but also OUR EXPRESSION! This means that if we do not have Christ as our expression, if His attributes are not manifested out of our lives, we do not have His protection or His covering. In some places it seems that the Lord's people are not covered by Christ, but rather by some kind of doctrine, for the doctrine becomes their expression. In other places the covering is a manifestation of certain gifts or manifestations – the gifts have become the expression. In other places the covering is the ministry, and the leaders impart their own spirit to the people, themselves becoming the expression, as the younger ones take on even the physical mannerisms and talk, act, teach, sing, clap, and prophesy just like their mentors! Groups of believers are either under the covering of teachings, under the covering of gifts, or under the covering of ministers – not under the covering of Christ! But the teachings and gifts and ministries can never cover our flesh, or protect us, or produce the expression of CHRIST. No doctrines, no gifts, no men are adequate to cover a single believer! Only Christ must be exalted, only Christ must be EXPRESSED AS THE CLOTHING THAT ADORNS OUR LIVES! Little wonder the scripture exhorts,
This is a wonderful truth. It is not a matter of doctrines, organizations, New Testament Church structures, how the chairs are arranged, whether or not you have a pulpit, meetings, gifts, elderships, methods, works, techniques, rules, fellowships, or external observances, but it is CHRIST WROUGHT INTO MEN'S LIVES, and they now seek only Christ, exalt Christ, and put on Christ AS THEIR EXPRESSION. God's own precious Lamb
Christ becomes our expression as we enter into vital union with HIM. Through our union with Him we are able to put off the natural man and put on His attributes. The one who preaches and teaches, but does not partake of what he gives forth; who testifies to one thing and living another, has little or no influence when he attempts to share the reality of Christ. None judge our relationship with God by our knowledge of the Bible, or doctrines, or our profession and testimonies. The Christ-life must be working out in our lives, and manifested in our daily walk in the home and before those who see us the most.
When Jesus came to earth, it was that He might express the Father, that He might again show forth in its true light and beauty that glory which sin had so entirely hid from man. Man himself had been created in the image of God, that God might lay His glory upon him, to be shown forth in him – that God might be expressed in him. The Holy Ghost says,
"I shall be satisfied when I awake with THY LIKENESS,"
In the light of such ineffable glory, can it not be clearly seen that the "covering" teaching so revered by the Charismatic movement today (and, I regret to say, by some "Sonship" groups as well) is indeed
It is interesting to note that Joseph had a coat of many colors.
It is the will of God that we should look only to Him and know that ALL OUR COVERINGS ARE OF HIM. I do not mean that we should not love and appreciate our brethren, or that we should not receive from those whom the Lord sets to minister to us along our journey, but we must never fix our confidence or hope upon men lest we be ashamed. We must not pin our admiration upon men, who have been sustained, but upon God, who sustained them. Neither are we admire men who have gotten the victory, but God, who gave them the victory. We must never pay homage to men who have accomplished great works, but God, who wrought through them. There exists a great cloud of witnesses who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, closed the mouths of lions, quenched the power of raging fire, escaped the devourings of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed mighty and resistless in battle, routing alien hosts; women received their dead raised to life again, others suffered the trial of mocking and scourging, and even chains of imprisonment; they were stoned, were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they went about wrapped in the skins of sheep and goats, utterly destitute, oppressed, cruelly treated, men of whom the world was not worthy. But for all the glory of their mighty works and wonderful victory we are instructed to build neither upon their personal faith nor upon themselves. All the teaching of scripture instructs us to SEEK
THE GARMENTS OF PROTECTION
Again, let us go back to the Garden we have been studying, and a further beautiful lesson will come to our souls. When the Lord God thrust our erring parents forth from the Garden they had marred, although the earthly punishment for their sin still had to be endured, of His loving mercy He clad Adam and Eve in garments of His own selection which should be to them a shield from the evil and hostile world they now had to enter. The garden fences of Eden were for them no more, but each was to be guided within a protecting sanctuary of the Lord’s providing.
Once the impending trouble and judgment breaks in terrifying fury upon the nations, those held captive by men, those whose trust is in men who rule over them, those who are content to have their lives ordered by others, failing to enter into vital union with the Lord for themselves; those who are comfortable in their established patterns of church life and ritual, and those who fill the pews of the beautiful buildings of the so-called churches – these will be the first to fall before the overflowing scourge. Only those who do not bear any outward show but have the heavenly beauty and divine power of Christ upon them will endure to the end and come through the valley safely, to the amazement not only of the ungodly, but the religious as well. Clothed upon with the Spirit and Power of Christ they shall be untouched by the evil around them.
God's word is sure, His promise is clear, and we shall take courage and believe what He has spoken. Yes, HE is our covering, our expression, AND OUR PROTECTION. "He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in Him will I trust. Surely He shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence. He shall cover thee with His feathers, and under His wings shalt thou trust: His truth shall be thy shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee. Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked. BECAUSE THOU HAST MADE THE LORD, WHICH IS MY REFUGE, EVEN THE MOST HIGH, THY HABITATION."
The Spirit bids me share a vision given to a brother on the East Coast of the United States.
"After spending a period of time in prayer in the Spirit, before daylight, I dropped off to sleep between 6:30 and 7:00 a.m. While sleeping, I was given a dream which contained a vision. I shall relate this, with the interpretation which God spoke to me after the dream. It was a time of rest and peace in the home. The sun shone brightly and happiness prevailed. Sitting in the room, looking outside at the glory of God's nature, I suddenly saw a gross, dark cloud appear on the horizon. This was not just a normal dark cloud; its very "blackness" filled me with a terrible apprehension as I looked upon it. Then to my amazement, it had no sooner appeared on the horizon, than it literally filled the sky in all directions. The rapidity with which it moved caused me great alarm, for with its coming, came a sound of a deafening noise that continued as it passed over the earth. The noise was like a thundering, guttural, whistling roar, louder than any fleet of bombers I ever heard while in the Air Force.
"As the cloud came toward me, approaching with the speed of a tornado, I became aware of something other than the increasing roar of noise as it approached. As it rapidly spread over the land, I saw tiny lights, like dancing candle flames appearing to be folded into the cloud as it sped along. The lights seemed more
"I ran out to watch its progress, for I was drawn to it by a terrible fascination. As the darkness swept past me, suddenly shimmering waves of "Light" came before me, seeming to separate me from the cloud – then it cleared and I could see clearly. Instantly came the conscious thought: 'This is a vision from the Lord: I must watch closely!' As the shimmering waves of "Light" cleared, I saw the blackness sweeping past with jet-pane velocity, yet I was neither afraid of its noise or appearance. Suddenly, the lights changed and took form. They became numbers and letters of the alphabet. They did not count or spell anything, but literally millions of them streamed by in the cloud so rapidly that I could only distinguish what they were.
"Then the sounds of explosions, rending of metal, whining of engines out of control ended in a great cloud of white-looking smoke that billowed into the air. I saw one very fat-bodied plane falling crazily to the earth, and when the smoke cleared away, the earth was littered with crumpled aircraft and debris of all sorts. I looked on in agony, sickened by the destruction, yet in a way, I was strangely unmoved. Then I noticed the insignia on the planes was that of our beloved nation!
"Again the shimmering waves of light cut off the sight of the destruction, and I woke with a start. As I pondered these things greatly, the Word of the Lord came to me saying, 'My child, the dark cloud you beheld is the wrath of God in judgment. The lights, as numbers and letters it bore along with its passing, are peoples of innumerable number, and many languages which it shall sweep before it, and carry to destruction. The speed with which it came and went upon a day of sunlight and rest is to show you how unexpected and rapid this judgment shall be. The shimmering Light which came between you and the cloud of darkness is THE GLORY OF MY PRESENCE! The lack of fear you had for yourself is to show you the condition of those WHO HAVE DWELT IN THE SECRET PLACE OF THE MOST HIGH! The planes you saw are those of America, that you might know to warn My people: JUDGMENT SHALL ALSO FALL HERE!
"'My son, think no longer upon these things, but arise, and write that you forget not! Satan would remove these things from you with doubtful disputations. Rise and write! For you must warn My people that those filled with the confidence of the flesh, and assurance of well-being shall suffer in the flesh, even as they have not sought to mortify the deeds of the flesh with the power of My Spirit! Verily I say unto you, no flesh shall glory in My sight! Thus saith the Lord: The evil day shall come upon many unawares, BUT THE OBEDIENT CHILDREN OF THE MOST HIGH SHALL ABIDE UNDER THE SHADOW OF THE ALMIGHTY."
It would be presumptuous to add anything to this vision, or seek to explain the wrath it foretells, so soon to be accomplished upon the world and our own beloved land. Nationally we have forsaken the God in whose hand is our breath to live instead after the baseness of the god of this age. In these troublous times let us lay aside every weight and the sin that doth so easily beset us, and let us meditate deeply upon these significant and portentous words of the vision: MY CHILD, THE LACK OF FEAR YOU HAD FOR YOURSELF IS TO SHOW YOU THE CONDITION OF THOSE WHO HAVE DWELT IN THE SECRET PLACE OF THE MOST HIGH. THE OBEDIENT CHILDREN OF THE MOST HIGH SHALL ABIDE UNDER THE SHADOW OF THE ALMIGHTY.
There has been a cleft made in the Rock, there is a secret place in the bosom of our Saviour, for there was a rent made in His side making possible the engrafting of us all. The Spirit would reveal in the depths of our consciousness at what untold cost this place was provided for us in the cleft of the Rock of ages. What suffering and ignominy were His, as through the veil, that is to say His flesh, He opened to us a new and living way into the Holiest of all; into those eternal abiding places in the cleft of the Rock. When He cried: "It is finished!" was the Rock rent; then were those hiding-places opened up, in which we are invited to hide away from the enemy. People who see us do not know that we are hiding away in the cleft of the Rock. They only see a heavenly, supernatural calm, which abides through every storm of life; but God knows we are hiding away in the Rock. As we abide in Christ, in union with Him, truly ONE WITH HIM, we are as much hidden away as God can hide us. Those about us see our bodies walking around on earth; but they do not know that we, who live in these frail tents, are so hidden away that no man or devil can find or touch us!
If we take this place and there abide, at every step we shall prove that Yahweh is a wall of fire around us that He is the glory within. It is here that the sons of God find security from every foe and every storm. Though the storms are fierce, they cannot dismay those sons who abide IN HIM. Though the wind blows and the hurricane sweeps down upon their hiding place, they cannot come near them. In this secret place they do not fear though a host encamps against them, their hearts are confident. Though the
"He shall cover us with His feathers."
Desperate days are upon the world and, by the time this Study is read, there will be ever increasing sorrow. There is only one place of true safety. It is not among the blinding traditions of Babylon, waiting for a rapture to whisk us away to a celestial Disneyland in the sky. Neither is it under the so-called protective "covering" of men, elderships, shepherds or fellowships. It is not in a bomb shelter, nor is it in the dens and caves of the earth. It is not in some wilderness retreat, nor is it in some fancied "safe area" blessed with advantageous air-currents and kissed by favorable winds. It is in the SECRET PLACE of the Most High. It is where saints abide under the shadow of the Almighty. There in that holy habitation, covered with that divine garment, you can abide safely. Learn to dwell in the secret place. Find time to wait on the Lord. Place the Word of God before you as you wait before Him. Let Him speak to your heart and spirit, let him unfold His mysteries to you. Abide there until you sense His overshadowing power and know the blessing of His abiding confidence within yourself. Should the glory we anticipate tarry longer, the darkness around us will greatly increase as evil men and seducers, already thick about us, increase more and more.
To be continued