I have a tree in the back yard where I can take a camp chair and sit in the shade, facing east. I’m reminded of how YHWH told King Shelomoh [Soloman] that if His people would humbly pray and seek His Face, turning from their wicked ways [actions that are contrary to the Torah], that He would hear them, forgive them and heal them.
We have often heard that verse used in prayer meetings and revival campaigns, but rarely do we read the next verse. 2 Chronicles 7:15 “Now, My eyes are open and My ears attentive to the prayer of this place.” What place? The Temple Mount in Jerusalem. In His estimation, that piece of ground is more set apart and worthy of His attention than any other place on earth. So, when I need a real answer, I go to my place in the backyard, and look toward that place and seek His Face.
In a time of frustration at not being able to lead my church congregation to the same place that YHWH was taking me, I cried out to Him from my backyard chair. I heard that unmistakable voice say to me, “When you come out, do not recreate what you come out of.” I was shocked and released at the same time. I didn’t know that He was leading me out of the church system, but I was inwardly relieved that He was. That command from Him has led me now for over 11 years. I did indeed leave the system and I have continually strove not to recreate that system for myself or for those that I lead.
The temptation was to go to the end of the church parking lot and set up a tent and start over. Basically, it would have been a smoother and a more acceptable move for me to simply add Jewish items to the pulpit way of doing things, such as men having tallits, wearing kippahs, adding a Friday night Shabbat service, and using Jewish style music, while keeping the traditions, organizational forms, and staying in the denomination. A lot of people would have been challenged but would end up okay with the change. But the command was to come out, like Avraham heard and like Moshe was told to help Yisrael do.
The Father’s goal is for us to return to the place where His Name is inscribed and where He has placed His Presence. We are to hear the words of Yahshuah, “Repent, make teshuvah, and return to what you have lost.” For the original hearers of those words, that meant to repent of their turning away from the teachings of Moshe in order to embrace the religious system that had taken over the Temple Service. Those words still ring true for us. We are to turn from religious men and their machinations of compulsive service to their doctrines and self serving traditions.
If you’re tired of being persuaded to swallow things that just don’t add up with the Scriptures in order to stay apart of the group. If you have asked yourself, “Is this all there is?”. If your spirit is agitated and unsettled after the worship service. If you are left dry and empty after being rocked hard by worship and given “Gospel Light” for spiritual food, then turn your face toward Jerusalem and listen for the same voice I heard in my place of prayer. It’s the same voice who said, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues.” [Revelation 18:4] It’s the same voice in Zekaryah [Zechariah] 10:6-10, where He said, “I will whistle for them and gather them…though I sow them among peoples, they shall remember Me in places far away…And I shall gather them back…”
It’s time to come out and not recreate what we have come out of. It’s time to make a clear departure and return to what our Messiah was really calling us to. I challenge you to find a quiet place, turn your face toward His Presence, and listen for that voice. Be bold enough to do what He asks. Your journey is about to begin.