FACE TO FACE
For now we see through a glass darkly; but then face to face.
I Corinthians 13:12
Over thirty-five hundred years ago, Moses began building the church in the wilderness with the instructions of God, which Moses had received from the angel of the Lord on Mount Sinai. When Moses came down from the mount, the skin of his face shone. Because of the fear this caused the people, Moses put a veil on his face when talking with the people, but he removed it when talking to the Lord. The anointing of God, caused a visible change on the face of Moses.
God instructed the children of Israel that the shine of the face was a sign of the blessing of his presence.1 The word ‘shine’ in the Hebrew is ‘OWR’, which means ‘luminous or set on fire’. The children of God, many times in the word, ask for the light of the countenance of God to be upon them.2
"God be merciful unto us, and bless us; and cause his face to shine upon (or with) us; Selah. That thy way may be known upon earth, thy saving health among all nations."3 The shining face symbolizes the knowledge of his way and is called a ‘saving health’.
When Jesus took Peter, James, and John into a high mountain and was transfigured before them, his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light. Moses and Elijah were visible within this light and Jesus was the source. The disciples were seeing "the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."4 We, in our walk "that shineth more and more unto the perfect day"5 and have been "seeing in a glass darkly"6, will behold him face to face. As we approach his nature, we are changed into the same image, from glory to glory, even as by the spirit of the Lord. This glory or light, called a treasure by Paul, we hold in "earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us."7
Isaiah when speaking about the day of the Lord, said, "Howl ye; for the day of the Lord is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty. Therefore shall all hands be faint, and every man’s heart shall melt: And they shall be afraid: pangs and sorrows shall take hold of them; they shall be in pain as a woman that travaileth: they shall be amazed one at another; their faces shall be as flames. Behold, the day of the Lord cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it."8
As the church enters into the time of travail to bring the man child forth, there will be a witness of fire on the faces of his children. Peter instructed the church to "consider it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you". 9 But most of the church, when they begin to perceive the fire upon their face won’t be ready for it. This beginning of tribulation for the spirit of error, and joy unspeakable for the children of God, is a fulfillment of God’s word to his people. "Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee. And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising. Lift up thine eyes round about, and see: all they gather themselves together, they come to thee: thy sons shall come from far, and thy daughters shall be nursed at thy side. Then thou shalt see, and flow together, and thine heart shall fear, and be enlarged; because the abundance of the sea shall be converted unto thee, the forces of the Gentiles shall come unto thee."10
As the fire of God cleanses and purifies the church, many will want to run or hide. Their carnal concepts of God will be as the hay and stubble in his presence. We must give up the tares that have attached themselves within the ground of our spirit. Once "we have been redeemed by this judgment of the church"11, we will be able to walk through the fire and not be burned, "neither shall the flame kindle upon thee"12. Jesus is your redeemer and the way of redemption must be made straight. Every ‘natural shoe’ of the carnal mind will come off. The fire in this presence of the Lord is consuming the chaff of our natures while it destroys the seed of the transgressor. As the spirit of burning touches us and prepares our face to behold his face, look into the spirit (up). for your redemption is drawing nigh. This fire from Jesus is the latter rain. His true church will flow together as the impurities that have separated us are consumed. The spirits of religion (the leavening of the Pharisees) will ‘howl’ at this coming of the Lord. This fire light from the presence of the Lord, cannot be hid. The church, in this anointing, will be able to "pull them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh."13 This is the voice of God speaking plainly to the Babylonian prison keepers who have bound and tied his children. This fiery furnace will loose every bondage.
As this rain flows into a river, the thirsty world will come to know Jesus. Every religion will bend it’s knee and acknowledge that God is in you of a truth. This judgement is already upon us. Many ministers (the first partakers) have turned their air conditioners down, took two aspirin and gone back to sleep. Most are like Peter was when God told him to "kill and eat". "Why God, I can’t eat these unclean things." ‘My religion doesn’t allow it’ is what he was saying to God.
Jesus has in this last day, again, prepared disciples and "sent them forth by two and two; and gave them power over unclean spirits; And commanded them that they should take nothing for their journey, save a staff only; no script, no bread, no money in their purse: But be shod with sandals; and not put on two coats. And he said unto them, In what place soever ye enter into an house, there abide till ye depart from that place. And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear you, when ye depart thence, shake off the dust under your feet for a testimony against them. Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city."14 They won’t need two coats, they have the power to stay warm. Their staff is an undeniable witness of God. Their anointing will consume the unclean spirits. They have a word from the Lord to share with those that receive them with an ear to hear. We must restore and make straight the way of the Lord.
He who hath an ear to hear, let him hear.
1 Numbers 7:25
2 Psalm 4:6
3 Psalm 67:1-2
4 II Corinthians 4:6
5 Proverbs 4:18
6 I Corinthians 13:12
7 II Corinthians 4:7
8 Isaiah 13:6-9
9 I Peter 4:12
10 Isaiah 60:1-5
11 Isaiah 1:27
12 Isaiah 43:2
13 Jude 23
14 Mark 6:7-11