Jan 30, '11 6:37 PM
By Regner Capener
Having been called to a prophetic ministry when I was very young, I have become increasingly aware throughout the years that this is a very controversial area of ministry – and one which requires the utmost integrity.
There is a level of responsibility that goes with speaking, declaring or decreeing something “in the name of the Lord” as His representative and spokesman that goes beyond normal preaching and teaching. Those of us who walk and live in this realm have a higher standard to live by because if we speak falsely or declare something that the Holy Spirit has not actually said – or if we add to or take away from something He is saying – we effectively discredit His Word and create conditions that Satan uses to deafen people to hear the actual prophetic Word.
This is true also of evangelists, pastors and teachers to a lesser degree, but the one who speaks and says in essence, “Thus saith the Lord,” had better KNOW that the Lord is truly speaking that Word for that moment in time and that the fruit or evidence must follow. I’m saying this because I’m realizing that the Holy Spirit is really pulling us up short so that we are cautious and careful – and yet bold to speak no matter the consequences.
Thank God for the grace He has given throughout the years as I – and my fellow brothers and sisters who operate in this realm of ministry – grow and mature into the accuracy that must accompany us along with the personal integrity required! I have not always been accurate. In years gone by I have said things that obviously came out of a superheated imagination. They didn’t come to pass as I said. And each time that has taken place, there has been an “OUCH” inside because I missed God. His grace has covered my failures but He has used each failure to teach me.
I’ve said all that to say this. There is a sifting taking place in the prophetic “movement” (if I can use that descriptor) in this hour. There is a shaking taking place for the purpose of sorting out those who are truly anointed by the Holy Spirit and wear a prophetic mantle, and those who prophesy in the name of the Lord for personal gain and self-aggrandizement. There must be a separation that takes place so that as the apostle Paul wrote, “that they which are approved [by God] may be made manifest among you.”
That word “approved” in the Greek text is the word, dokimos.It is an ancient word that was commonly used among those who refined gold and silver for the purpose of creating coins with certain and fixed value, and it speaks of the smelting process – heating gold or silver in a crucible to the boiling point so that the impurities come to the surface and get scooped off. In the end, what remains is the pure gold or pure silver.
That’s exactly what the Holy Spirit is doing – and has been doing – among those who are called to declare, decree and speak forth in the onoma (name) – the character, the essence, the nature and makeup of the Lord Jesus Christ. We must be proven in the fire, and the Word tested and tried in us. The Word that comes forth must be a proven and demonstrable Word.
Just as there have been a number of preachers, teachers and evangelists who have misused the truth of the message of prosperity for their own gain, there have been those in the prophetic realm who have likewise misused their anointing, pointing accusing fingers at certain individuals whose gifting, anointing and sharing has been misunderstood and as a result brought discredit to themselves and confusion in the Body of Christ. This sifting of the Holy Spirit, therefore, and separation between the “approved” and those who walk in error must, of necessity, take place.
A certain young lady named Shamir brought my attention to the fact that in my recent defense of some of the accused, I was doing the same thing as those who were pointing accusing fingers. It was a warning I both received and appreciated. When in our zeal to defend certain individuals or truths we strongly believe, we use the same tactics as those who speak in error and unbelief, we bring the same discredit to the Gospel. Naming names and pointing fingers at individuals, accusing them of heresy, is both unscriptural and in opposition to the command of the Lord (see I John 5:16).
Our responsibility is to minister forgiveness – not condemnation! Somehow we have to get past the place where we feel any necessity to defend the Lord or defend His Word. The Word of God defends itself and stands because of the integrity of the Lord Jesus Christ. There is no need for our getting into doctrinal disputations.
For my part I am glad when the Holy Spirit brings correction and admonishment to me. After sixty-plus years of walking with the Lord in a very personal relationship I know that correction comes in His love and His purpose to bring me to the fulfillment of His destiny in and for me. We live in the declining seconds of an age that is rapidly drawing to a close and it is critical that we all walk circumspectly with an increasing thirst for the manifested presence of the Lord in us.
‘Nuff said on that topic for now! Let’s get back to our discussions on Heaven and the important sharing that took place. What I’ve just shared is relevant to my discussions with Moses.
My conversation with Moses followed the succession of my conversations with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob – and indeed, with the exception of Joseph, all of my conversations followed in the chronological order of the lives of those individuals throughout the centuries. Because I was remembering so much of my experiences and conversations with David, I took him out of sequence in these Coffee Breaks.
Joseph was the one exception to the order of things. Other than a brief meeting with him on this first trip to Heaven, I did not have a real in-depth conversation with him until some two years later on my second trip to Heaven. In fact, he was the entire focus of my second trip, and it was a very different experience from this first one.
As previously noted, virtually everyone I met and spoke with appeared in the prime of life. It’s a funny thing, but I suppose because Moses didn’t even begin leading Israel until he was 80 years of age I somehow expected him to look like a stereotypical 80-year old.Wrong! He was strong, muscular and appearing vibrantly healthy – much, I would suppose – as he did when he fled from the courts and palace after Pharaoh found out who he was and how he had killed an Egyptian.
My questions to Moses centered briefly on his life as Pharaoh’s grandson, then his experiences with the burning bush and the voice of God, next his return to Egypt to face a Pharaoh he would likely have known as an heir to the throne before he fled into Midian, and finally the things he experienced with Israel as they were in the wilderness. I was curious about his responses to the Lord and how, after spending so much of his early life in Egyptian culture, he was able to respond to God. His answers were a bit of a surprise since there was nothing in my reading of Scripture that had indicated the picture he drew for me.
Our conversation began after my introduction to him like this: “Moses, I always thought you grew up in Pharaoh’s palace without any real awareness of God, and that He introduced Himself to you for the first time in the burning bush. What did you think when you first heard the Lord?”
He smiled and then laughed.“I suppose a lot of folks think that’s the way it happened, but if you think back to the account in Exodus you’ll remember that my sister, Miriam, offered to get a nurse for me when Pharaoh’s daughter found me in the river. You’ll also remember that it was my mother who Miriam got as my nurse.
“Now think about it for a minute. I spent more of my early years with my real parents than I did in Pharaoh’s palace. My mother spent a great deal of time talking about the God of Israel and telling me about our heritage as descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. I wasn’t unfamiliar with God. We’d just never met personally until that day on Mount Horeb.
“Yes, I spent a great deal of time with my adoptive Egyptian mother, Pharaoh’s daughter, and she made certain that I was treated as a possible heir to the throne of Egypt. Pharaoh never knew of my birth as a Hebrew. Had he known, he would easily have killed his own daughter – and me!”
“So you pretty much knew, then, that you were not an Egyptian during your growing-up years?” I asked.“Was it hard to keep the secret? Did you look enough like an Egyptian that no one asked?”
Moses just chuckled.“Egyptians and Jews look a lot alike. Dress an Egyptian in the clothing of a Hebrew shepherd and you’d never know. Put me in the typical garb of a member of the royal family and to all practical intents I was Egyptian. No one ever questioned that I was a prince.”
He continued.“I didn’t really spend a lot of time among Pharaoh’s family until after I was 12 years of age. They’d seen enough of me during my earlier years that I wasn’t a stranger, but you have to understand that children who were of the house of Pharaoh didn’t really have the run of Pharaoh’s palaces during their nursing years and even up until they were perhaps eight years of age. When they reached that age they were being schooled as members of the royal family. Pharaoh’s daughter eased me in stages into my preparation as a prince of Egypt.
“Those first years of my life with my parents teaching me about my heritage as a descendant of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob – being a Hebrew – became so instilled in me that when, as I grew older, I began to see the bondage and hard labor of the Jews under the hand of Pharaoh. An anger and rebellion began to grow inside of me at the treatment I was seeing. I wasn’t good at expressing myself verbally so my frustrations just grew greater and greater as they were pent up.
“Nearing the age of 40, everything exploded in me one day when I saw a taskmaster beating a young Hebrew who was under his charge. Rage took over and before I realized what had happened, I had killed that Egyptian. I dug out some sand and quickly buried him, unaware that my actions had been witnessed.
“Everything was still seething in me the next day when I saw a fight unfold between a couple of my fellow Hebrews. When I stepped in to intervene, the man who provoked the fight somehow knew that I was not a prince of Egypt but rather a Hebrew like him. When he angrily responded, ‘Who made you our prince and judge? Are you going to kill me like you killed that Egyptian yesterday?’ it shook me to realize that my identity as someone other than a prince of Egypt had been discovered. I knew that news would travel fast and eventually reach Pharaoh’s ears.
“It did! It wasn’t a matter of more than a few weeks and Pharaoh found out about the deception. From that moment there was an edict against me and my life was done in Egypt. There was nothing to do but run for my life.
“It took me many days of walking and running to cross what you would see as more than a hundred miles of desert and wilderness until I wound up spent and famished among the fields and herds of Jethro, the Midianite. You pretty much know the story. Jethro took me in; and after discovering that we were related to each other distantly through Abraham he gave me his daughter, Zipporah, as my wife.
“For most of the next forty years, I was a farmer and a shepherd – at first taking care of Jethro’s flocks and herds, and then having my own. Zipporah and I had a couple of sons whom we raised to likewise be farmers and shepherds.”
“So you lived a completely different life than you had in Egypt,” I said.“Wow! How hard was that? After the palace and royalty, now you are … well… like a regular person!”
“This was an important part of my life,” Moses responded. He was obviously amused at my analogy of his becoming “a regular person.”
“God had to take the Egypt out of me,” he said.“For every year I had spent in Egyptian life, living both as a prince of Egypt, and also as a Hebrew seeing the hard bondage of travail of my people and being frustrated over not being able to do anything about it, the Lord had to completely re-educate me, year for year. My mindset had to change completely. I didn’t realize that the nomadic life of a shepherd and herdsman was preparation for my future leadership of Israel and the years that were going to be spent moving about like nomads in the wilderness.”
“So you were 80 years old – or almost 80 – when you first saw the burning bush,” I mused, thinking back to the Scriptures I had read.“What did you think when you first saw that bush?”
“It wasn’t just the bush that wouldn’t burn up, it was the appearance of the Angel of the Lord in the midst of it,” he responded.“At first I couldn’t believe what I was seeing, and then to see the Angel in the midst of the fire…well…I’d heard stories about Abraham and Isaac and Jacob, and their experiences with the Angel of the Lord, but this was not just a story! I was seeing this with my eyes and hearing the Angel of the Lord with my ears! It stopped me in my tracks.
“It was the Lord God talking to me through this Angel! You can believe that when I heard him say, ‘Take your shoes off: you are standing on holy ground,’ I took my shoes off and dropped to the ground afraid to look.”
I interrupted him to ask, “What I don’t understand is why when The Lord told you that you were His chosen vessel to deliver Israel from the Egyptians – and especially after you had the two signs of the rod turning into a serpent and your hand becoming white with leprosy – you argued with Him, and continued to argue with Him, and told Him that you couldn’t speak and that they wouldn’t hear you! Why would you argue with God in the face of such power and authority?”
“That’s a good and honest question,” he answered.“Looking back in retrospect, I’d have to say that there was a place of fear that still existed in me. Despite having been out of Egypt for 40 years I was still contaminated with the some of its remnants. Everything about Egypt was fear. Pharaoh ruled by fear and intimidation. The people – both the Egyptian people and we as Hebrews – lived our lives in constant fear. A sword hung over the land continually.
“At that point in my life, I really had no personal experience of walking with God. Despite all the things I’d been told by my parents about the Lord and all the things I’d heard about God’s Covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, it was all second hand. None of it was personal for me.God was showing Himself to me in that moment and it should have been enough, but there was still enough residual fear in me to contaminate my trust in Him.”
Moses stopped his explanation momentarily and pointed his finger at me.“Let me tell you something, young man! The Lord has given you this experience, just as He has already given you many other experiences with Him and with angels to establish a baseline of trust and confidence in Him. You’re going to need it! We wouldn’t be having this conversation if you didn’t have some very important purpose in His Kingdom economy in the years to come.
“Satan will try to fill you with fear.He will make every effort to contaminate you just like I was. In the years to come you will have many contrary experiences. You will probably blunder just like I did and make decisions and choices you’d like to undo. Don’t let your regrets and missed opportunities deter you. Don’t forget, God is a God of second chances.If you miss it the first time, He’ll give you another opportunity.
“Your ability to trust the Lord completely no matter what you see and no matter what experiences you have that seem totally contrary to His Word and His commands to you.Your life will depend on your ability to trust Him and have confident faith that whatever He tells you to do, you CAN do, and you MUST do knowing that He most certainly will fulfill His Word to you. Speak His Word no matter the people and no matter the circumstances. He will back you up just like He backed me up.”
Those words registered in my being in that moment and just as Moses had indicated, in the years to come I would get sidetracked and contaminated by fear. I had no idea just how much the Enemy was going to try and sabotage the Word in me and prevent me from fulfilling God’s commission in me.
Obviously I’m not going to have time today to talk about Moses’ leadership and his experiences in dealing with Israel and bringing them out of Egypt, not to mention his frustration with them in the wilderness. We’ll save that for our next discussion.
Next: HEAVEN: Moses & Israel.
2011 is a year of great change, great stirring among the people of God!The call to purity and cleanliness before God has gone forth – and is going forth!This is also a year of God’s recompense on behalf of His people – a year of God’s Justice!
Blessings on you!
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