The coming of the Lord is so near. I was challenged again by the nearness of His return. I always have that when I go to Israel, but this time it was even more pronounced. There is an awaking happening in Israel, which means that there is an awakening coming to the global body of Christ. And I was challenged to awake from my slumbering heart on our Israel Mandate 2018 Pilgrimage more than I had ever been challenged in my life.
YOU’RE NOT GOING NO WHERE…YOUR PASSPORT IS EXPIRED
There was a personal challenge that I had at the beginning of the trip that was a prophetic picture of how near His coming is and how we should be preparing our hearts to hear from Him in the details of our lives, to be able to keep our hearts prepared for that Great and Awesome day of the Lord. My passport was expired, and I didn’t know it until I got to the ticket counter in NYC to board the plane to Israel. I got to the final counter in New York and was told; YOU’RE NOT GOING NO WHERE…YOUR PASSPORT EXPIRED IN JANUARY OF 2018.
I had to get a new passport in New York City, which fortunately is where I was. So I could get the passport same day, but it was Friday and it was a holiday weekend, so I couldn’t get my passport until Tuesday. But the Lord began challenging him in the delay. I asked him, in tears, why did this happen? And why didn’t you let me know my passport was expired? He said, I did, but you were not listening… You were too busy doing for me to hear from me. And just as this happened to you keeping you from entering into my City, many people are going to get to the door of my Kingdom and the passport of their heart is going to be expired and they are not going to even know it.
I NEVER KNEW YOU….
The Lord gave me the scripture in Matthew 7:22 that challenged me personally, where Jesus said, “Many will come to Me on that day and say to me,” ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ “Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from Me, you evil doers.’ ’’ And they thought they were OK. The Lord revealed to me from this experienced that the knowledge of God is the crucial pivot of the kingdom of God in relation to the return of the Lord. Not just your knowledge of Him, but His knowledge of you.
What does it mean when an all-knowing God, who’s cardinal characteristic is Omniscience says to you who He created, “I NEVER KNEW YOU? That’s a seeming Oxymoron, a contradiction. The Contradiction of God is to say in Omniscience I NEVER KNEW YOU? The text is revealed in the context. There’s a purpose for God and man. It’s not work. It’s not wealth. It’s not worth. It’s LOVE.
Love is the increasing of intimacy revealing the essence of who you are to another. Love is the opening up of all one is in the process of time. Love is the vulnerability and accessibility of one’s heart to another. The Fruit of Love is the connecting of Hearts against all opposition (of offence, bitterness, unforgiveness, etc.) The fruit of Love are words of authenticity and truth coming from the heart. The fruit of the spirit is Love, but the fruit of Love is truth. What’s the true essence of who you are? The true essence of who you are comes from Him. The true essence of who you comes from spending time with Him. The true essence of who you are comes from being vitally connected to Him. John 15 :1 says it like this, I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine dresser. What’s that saying? I AM THE VITAL CONNECTION TO THE SOURCE THAT RELEASES THE NUTRIENTS AND THE DNA OF THE FATHER TO HUMANITY. My father is the vinedresser, the one responsible for establishing the culture of continued connection for growth, removing what hinders growth. Removing what stops the flow of nutrients that cause growth.
I DON’T SEE ME IN YOU
For the father to say, “I NEVER KNEW YOU,” is to say, I DON’T RECOGNIZE YOU! What you are did not come from Me. What’s in your heart did not come from Me. God is looking for a return of His nature in man. The return of His nature, likeness and image is accomplished by a process of abiding in Him. Abiding in Him culminates in our essence being like Him. Abiding in Him culminates in our image being like His. For Him to say I NEVER KNEW YOU is to say, you never connected with my heart. You connected to my promises, but you never connected to my way, nor my will. Therefore, your doing was not motivated by your being with me, but by whoever you connected with at the heart level. I see what you’re doing but what’s in your heart did not come from me. I DON’T RECOGNIZE WHAT YOU’VE BECOME. YOUR PASSPORT HAS EXPIRED
I’ve been challenged ever since I’ve been back from Israel, to focus on my heart, rather than doing ministry. Because the Lord said to me, “The passport of your heart can be expired, and you wouldn’t even know it until you get to the gate.” I had looked at my passport, but not at the date, because I got it in 2008. It’s a ten-year gap. That 10 year gap makes you believe you always have time before your passport expires. Who knows what they were doing or where they were 10 years ago in 2008. We elected our first African-American President twice and afterwards elected a billionaire, television star. A lot can happen in 10 years…and time can lull you to sleep.
CHECK THE PASSPORT OF YOUR HEART
You can go for years without checking your passport, because it’s so long since the time you got it and the time it expires – 10 years. If it was every 2 years you would be thinking about it regularly. So, from the time I got my passport until now, you lose track of it and don’t think about having to check to see if it’s expired or not. And the Lord said to him, “The longer you are around the things of my kingdom and I don’t return you become lax with checking your heart relationship with me because it’s been so long since I first came into your heart, and therefore you fail to check the very common, very elementary, foundational things, the longer you can go and not even know your heart is not right nor ready to see Him, nor Him you.”
There are going to be people who think they’re OK – they’re pastoring, etc., but they are going to get to the gate and He’s going to say, “No” because your heart is not pure, and your actions are not pure. He said things to me and I didn’t know what it meant. He said a “recalcitrant” heart. What is a recalcitrant heart? It’s someone who is not teachable. No one can speak into their life. Obstinately defiant of authority. “If your heart is recalcitrant, I cannot speak into your life.”
MANY will come in My Name…
The verse in Matthew says, “Many will come in My name…saying, I preached is your name…It doesn’t say a few will come in My name… The challenge to me is that the longer you’re in this, the easier it becomes to not be ready, at the heart level, for His return. Because we’re going and going and we’re “doing and doing,” but the heart is not becoming and becoming…more and more like His. But the heart is about “being.” And your doing deceives your heart into believing that because doors are opening, and you are going for Him, you believe that you know Him, and that doing for Him or going for Him, or even knowing about Him is all there is to your relationship with Him.
I NEVER KNEW YOU, OR YOU DIDN’T KNOW HIM
Upon reading Matthew 7:24 Your mind can easily think He said, You didn’t know Him, but he didn’t say that. He said, “I never knew YOU.” If you think about that, how does God not know you? He knows everything. As I said above, He doesn’t recognize HIM in YOU. But He’s also saying, “You did not know realize where you were or how far you’d fallen.” Like Adam. God said, “Adam, Where are YOU? Well, He knew where Adam was, but he wanted Adam to know where he was.
So, God challenged me, saying Brondon, bring ALL your stuff to Me and confess it at the heart level, stuff that you would not confess unless you were caught doing something. He challenged me to confess what my spirit catches me thinking that dulls my heart. He challenged me to confess before you’re caught doing something that’s against God. He’s challenging us to go to the root. When He says, “I never knew you” He’s saying you never brought the matters of your heart to Me. You never brought things to me that you were struggling with. You tried to grin, bear it, and cover it up with the leaves of religiosity. And because you don’t tell me those things, those things have never been dealt with.
To know, it’s a Hebrew root word, “Yada” which is to know, and to be known, to be well respected. It’s to have an intimate relationship. It’s God saying, “You didn’t really come into covenant with Me and trust me as your Bridegroom. You did not seek me as your shelter. You were doing all kinds of things for Me, but you were not intimate with me. You were not married to me. Therefore, I do not know you.”
TIME WILL DECEIVE YOU INTO THINKING HE’S DELAYING HIS RETURN
So, I’m at the counter with the group to go to Israel, and I’m the leader of the group. I’m leading 10 people. I get to the check-in counter. Here I am, the leader, and the officer looks at me, she looks at my passport, she asks for the group to come to the counter together, since everyone is on the same ticket, and she looks at my passport first and says to me, “YOU’RE NOT GOING ANYWHERE TODAY. Your passport has expired.” It was a greater thing God was doing in exposing me. The rest of them went on. Then I took the day to get my passport updated. But the Lord was convicting me about my focus not being on the things that matter.
Remember, with that passport expiration being 10 years, thinking, “I’ve got 10 years, I think I will coast awhile.” There’s so many coasting in their Christian life. Well, it’s going to be a long time before Jesus comes back. He’s not really coming now.
The Lord said that because we stopped preaching the coming of the Lord, we are not going to be ready.
He is coming soon, but because we stopped preaching, we will not be ready, we will not check the passport of our heart. The hardest things for us Christians to do are the simplest things. We don’t do it. We’re too busy. We’re too busy to be ready. We’re too busy doing this stuff. We’re too much like Martha and no enough like Mary. There’s not enough Mary’s. We aren’t saying, “I want to sit at your feet and wait and hear what You have to say, and gaze upon your beauty.” There’s not enough of that. Not enough prayer. Prayer gets pushed off into the Netherlands. Listen – this is my heart. I have 5 kids in my house. I do not have time for meetings. I do have time always to gaze upon the face of my Savior. For me, that scripture (Matt. 7:21-23) is the scariest scripture in the Bible.
It scared the living daylights out of me. I’m left behind in NYC while the team is on their way to the Holy City. I’m crying. I’m saying, “Lord why didn’t you tell me my passport was expired?” He said, “I was trying to tell you, but you weren’t listening. You were too busy going and doing.” And I was crying, and He brought up that verse, “Many in that day...will say I preached in Your Name” Then He brought up the parable of the 10 virgins. 5 of them were foolish, but they were all virgins. In other words, they were not all uninfected by the world. But 5 of them weren’t ready and 5 of them were not. Why were they not ready?? Because they stopped looking for and talking about His return. To prepare for His return He said we must do three things
- We must keep our heart pure and un-spotted from the world – (James 1:27) (Passport Check)
- We must look for, preach and expect His return, if not in our lifetime in our children. (Matt 24:14; 2Peter 3:1-9)
- We must connect to the land He’s returning to…Jerusalem, by, praying for the peace of Jerusalem, and by taking pilgrimages to Jerusalem, and by becoming a witness in your city of Jerusalem’s significance to the blessing of the peace of the city you live in at His return. (Acts 1:8)
So, He brings both of those up to me, and He says, “This is you.” It was a public rebuke – dealing with my shortcomings and with my heart – as a Hebrews 12 time. It was no more and no less than a public rebuke with 10 people following me as their leader.
This was a sober reminder and should be a reminder for all of us. We need to do due diligence, but we need the time with God, too. We need both and need to keep it balanced. So much of the church is not balanced. There’s too much diligence. Busy. Take time to sit and hear before we preach…Then We’ve got to preach His soon return. We’ve got to get back to His message of His return.
ONCE I FINALLY ARRIVED TO ISRAEL
Once I finally arrived in Israel, I realized There is an awakening happening all over Israel to Yeshua as Messiah. There was a gathering of about 4,000 Jewish believers in Messiah in a forest in Galilee. Fifteen to Twenty congregations came together. I was really shaken by how near it seemed His return is. The Jewish people have to say, “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.” So they need to accept Him as Messiah before He returns. Many are coming to Christ as the Messiah and being enlightened to the fact that He is the only answer for their nation.
I felt there was a stronger sense of the presence of the Spirit in Israel. I felt this was Spirit verifying what I was sensing about the time being short. I do not know what “short” means, but I believe the Lord is asking us to pay attention and realize that, yes, the time is short.
Isaiah 60, 61, 62 and 63 are chapters that we prayed and meditated on while in Israel. Every year our interns and leaders in our house of prayer go to pray verses of Scripture that God highlights to pray in the land, over the land. In 2016 We prayed Isaiah 40-49; In 2017 it was Isaiah 50 -59, and in 2018 We prayed Isaiah 60-65
In each one of these chapters God enlightened my understanding as to what He wants to do as we come nearer to the coming of the Lord.
- Isaiah 60 is the illumination or LIGHT of revelation that His people are being awakened to in the land and in His body.
- Isaiah 61 is the anointing to preach and lift up the message of good news that our LIGHT (Revelation of Yeshua as Messiah, has come).
- Isaiah 62 is day and night prayer that must go up in the city of Jerusalem of watchmen set by God on the walls of the city to pray Him back to Jerusalem.
- Isaiah 63 Speaks of His return in the Great and Terrible day of the Lord – clothed in garments dyed in the blood of His enemies…signaling FIRST a time of judgment in Jerusalem (1 Peter 4:17 For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?) Later he added 64,65,66
- Isaiah 64 Judgment (continued)
- Isaiah 65 and 66 The Millennial reign / the Lion and the Lamb lay down together
When I finally got there the Messianic believers there were talking about Jerusalem being acknowledged by the USA as the Capital of Israel. They believe based on that alone, that He is coming soon. Because the nation, USA, that acknowledged that Jerusalem is the capital is the very nation that recognized them as a nation in 1948. They feel that it won’t be long until the leaders there in Jerusalem will be awakened to the truth of Isaiah 60…Arise Shine for thy LIGHT (Revelation of Messiah) has come.
When that happens, when the governmental leaders awake to who He is, and they actually invite Him to lead them, that’s the invitation. That’s why we pray for the peace of Jerusalem. It’s not the absence of war that we pray for. We pray for reconciliation through Messiah. That they would return to Him as Messiah. Jesus says, “I am your peace.” But it’s so near, and we are doing our stuff and not sounding the alarm.
One of the reasons we stopped preaching the return of Jesus was that we had this end-of-the-world theology that when Jesus returns, life ends. But what He said is, it begins when I return. All of the prophetic promises, like the promise of Genesis 12 where God promised Abraham, “To your offspring I will give this land.” This has not been completed yet. But not only Abraham’s promises, but our promises will be completely fulfilled when He returns. We will be all He’s called us to be when He returns. We will have all that He said we would have when He returns. In this generation we preach the return of Jesus from a nihilistic point of view, when it’s really a message of hope.
The nearer we get to the coming of the Lord the more manifestations of His prophetic promises, His will, and the visions He’s given us will come to fruition as well.
If we preached that we would actually love and desire His appearing instead of thinking, “Don’t come yet. I want to get out of college, I want to get married. Etc.” So, our message is wrong. His return speaks of every addictive thing being eliminated, healing to the fullest measure, His return signals that. We are prophesying stuff that’s connected to His return, but because we’re not even looking for His return, our stuff is just dying in the fields. It’s like a harvest you refuse to reap and it’s just dying in the fields. It’s because we are not preparing for His return. We don’t even know what it looks like when He comes.
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