From Apostolic to The Ancient of Days

By Dr. Tim and Theresa Early

In this moment of present truth restoration, there lies the significant importance of proper recognition of what the Person and Presence of the Lord is restoring. For in many instances, people would hear the cry of the Spirit for Restoration in Acts 3:21, but would not necessarily recognize the delicately emerging process of that which the Father is restoring unto his people... {Please check out all three "R" words in Acts 3:19, 21, Repentance, Refreshing, and Restoration}.

In other words, we would shout "The Apostles are Coming, The Apostles are Coming!" But in all honesty, we may have easily lacked considerable levels of discernment and proper recognition as to who they are, along with the need of understanding what and why they have been given for in the corporate body. With this in mind, we may have easily resorted to a position of gift magnification, excluding the real purpose of apostles being sent {apostello} in the earth {with prophets} to set the tone and pace for the body of Christ to enter into corporate destiny, something which is far greater in character and scope than the limited positions and mentalities of securing our weekly church services.

Unfortunately, in some circles of influence, we too often view the work of the ministry through our own insignificance, insecurity, and low self esteem, finding worth and value in being called present truth apostolic and prophetic, when in all honesty we are riding on the bandwagon by associating ourselves with this fresh outpour, without the genuine characterization and fruit that the true apostolic and prophetic dimension is producing. Further on, while traveling the nation {s} I would notice among some a sudden interest in being defined through the apostolic and prophetic, finding it rather difficult to believe that there is life in Christ {Christ the Head and Christ the Body} beyond the dimensions of the apostolic and prophetic.

In this we have made a current trend {or an idol god} out of the apostolic and prophetic dimension, not seeing the continuity of God's eternal purposes from the dateless past unto now; thus, defining the future through restored ministry gifts with the notion that the last thing on God's agenda is apostles and prophets, period! Here, we are not fully embracing the momentum of the Spirit to take us farther into new thresholds of the unlimited glory of the Lord. For in this lie the deeper aspects and dealings of the Father, far greater than gifting.

For this principle is supported by the passage of scripture in Ephesians 1:13-14, as we see the earnest of the Spirit as a pledge, a foretaste of something much more profound than speaking in other tongues. Here, it is the engagement ring before the wedding, or the down payment before settling on your new house. Here, the Father is referring us to the Ancient Paths of Jeremiah 6:16 and Micah 5:2, from sonship to fatherhood, into the riches of his glory, far exceeding Charismatic and prophetic experiences.

Here, Wisdom {Proverbs 9:1-6} is building the house with Seven Pillars {Isaiah 11:2 - the Seven Spirits or Seven-fold fullness of the Branch Man}, even the place which Abram saw from afar having foundations {2 Timothy 2:19}, whose builder {Matthew 16:18} and maker is God {Hebrews 11:10}. Here, we are moving past the banqueting table into the Kings Chamber, from David's Tabernacle to Solomon's Temple, from Passover to Tabernacles, from Conception to Perfection, from the Cross to the Throne.

For in all of our in-part experiences, the Spirit of the living God cries "FULNESS," Ephesians 3:18-19, that the saints would comprehend with others what is the breadth, width, depth, and height {The Most Holy Place} of Christ, the Fullness of God, the Preeminent One {Colossians 1:16-18}, Jesus Christ the highest order in the church at all times. No, not Jesus the babe, or the youth, but the Full Grown Man, the oil from the beard of Aaron {Psalms 133:1-3}, Jesus, the Apostle and High Priest of our profession...Hebrews 3:1...

Yes beloved, as the apostolic and prophetic dimension is bringing new configuration, calibrations, and meaning to the universal and local church, we must not lose focus {foresight and insight} as to where the Spirit of the Lord is taking us into. There is more that awaits you and me than being termed or labeled as apostolic {prophetic}. There is much more that we are to make manifest in the earth {Romans 8:19-27} as we let go of the new bundles and truck loads of carnal teachings which pride ourselves as being apostolic and prophetic, with a limited view to mere church meetings, excluding the bigger picture that the apostolic and prophetic is still, the in-part realm, even though it has a higher intended purpose.

For if we make the same mistake as our forefathers did in the 50's and 60's, highlighting the Charismatic Movement as the greatest thing on earth since ice water, we will again magnify certain spiritual experiences, turning the present wave of the glory of God into a monument, without the ongoing rhythm of the Spirit to take us further into new patterns and progressions of the Spirit for a whole new corporate destiny.

Like many things across the board, we have become corporate in one area, and have become a corpse in another. We cheerfully exclaim that we are apostolic with a prophetic vision, but the spiritual order of that local and trans-local ministry suggests we are actually something else. We say we are present truth, but in some cases it is nothing more than being an entry level Charismatic or Pentecostal in experience. We say we want to manifest the fullness of Christ, but we still have boxing matches on Pre-Mid-Post, running around the mountain, not having to grow that much more spiritually than before. We say we are the newer expression of the continual apostolic arising, but are full of mixture, devil conscious, sin conscious, works mentality, thriving on gift experiences while alienated from the proceeding or NOW word of the Lord for this present generation. We want bible, but not the Spirit of truth which proceeds from the Father.

Though this is a fresh new season for the global church to function and focus in the new degrees that the Spirit is restoring among us, it is not the time to say, "Ah, the Apostolic {and Prophetic}! What more can you ask for?"

Answer- For ALL that He IS and for ALL that HE DOES! {Philippians 3:10}

If we would take just a moment to discover that the eternal purposes of God are not limited to gifting, church government, nor the present highlight {and for some, the fame}of being acknowledged as apostles and prophets, we would see that these expressions of His grace and glory are in no wise the end of the story, but a powerful part of a beautiful and glorious unfolding of the Lord's doing beyond the confines of church as we know it, pouring over into the social streams of life that will radically effect the way we live on earth. As we have often taught in our Global School of Ministries and Leadership Institute, "the church does not produce the kingdom but the kingdom produces the church." If we are going to radiantly reveal the purposes of God in the earth, knowing Him and making Him known {Daniel 11:32}, we must take on a new corporate dynamic realizing that the apostolic and prophetic dimension is not the end, but a powerful doorway into the habitation of God, which Isaiah the prophet refers to as "The Lord that inhabits Eternity..." Isaiah 57:15...

In this deeper expression and meaning, the church is moving from the universal presence of the Father {30 - fold}, the manifest presence of the Lord {60 - fold}, into the eternal presence of God {100 - fold}. Here, eternity enters into our time, giving substance and tangibility to the purposes of God, regardless of our age, health, or personal circumstance. Here, it is the Wisdom of the Ages, the High and Lofty One that inhabits eternity, bringing into manifestation the already decreed will of the Father, the finished work of the cross, or, the done deal. Here, in our Kairos moment of time, the Father is doing a new thing within us, as we discover that the things we don't hear are more real than what we do hear. The things that we don't see are more real than the things we do see. 2 Corinthians 4:16-18; 5:1-8

It is Jacob at Beth'el {Many assemblies are called by the church chartered name Bethel, without the accent mark highlighting the Beth and the EL, no real revelation of the EL in the Beth, or the House {Beth} of the EL}. For Jacob discovers that the place where he is, is the House of God and the Gate of Heaven - Genesis 28:17...Meaning, the church is not the ultimate thing God is accomplishing in the earth. Bethel {Not Babel, smile!}, is the revelation of something deeper the Lord is revealing and establishing in the earth, something bigger than church as we know it. Bethel is the portal into the eternal glory of God, far exceeding the limited and carnal concepts of many church goers. Bethel is the gate of heaven, the 12 important levels of the kingdom as discovered in the names of the 12 sons of Jacob or Israel {From Ruben, behold the Son, to Benjamin - the Son of the Right Hand}.

This is Jacob's ladder, the angels ascending and descending , Jesus the Door to the sheepfold, the Shepherd to the Sheep, the realm of the Spirit where we find rest for our souls, greener pastures and new thresholds...John 10:1-4; Psalms 23:2. This is the place {Bethel} where Jacob begins his transformation , {Read also Genesis 32:1-2, the place of the Ma-ha-na-im, the Lord's host} and verses 24-30, the wrestling encounter, name change, nature change, a limp of a walk, but a new destiny that awaits us.

Meaning, our appointed gatherings of church as we so often define, must take on a whole new paradigm, a shifting in the Spirit in order to accommodate in the corporate anointing, a deeper depth of the eternal Spirit than ever before. We must be willing {and obedient} to launch forwardly into something that may challenge our limited notion and view of church, as Bethel had become a revelation to Jacob.

We must not hesitate to change our minds to the staggering realization that the Lord is the KING of Glory and that as we lift up our Heads O ye Gates, and to be lifted up ye everlasting doors, the KING of Glory SHALL come in. Psalms 24:7-10...We must press for the Mark of the Prize, and not settle for passing moments. We must become built into an attitude of the eternal, with our life based on the principles of the kingdom {Hebrews 12:27-28; Isaiah 33:6 - the Stabilizing influence of the Kingdom, that which shall not pass away}, and not by the fleeting moments of the core values of this world system nor the frivolous carnal thinking of many...1st John 2:15-17; Hebrews 12:16-17; 1st Corinthians 3:1-5; 6:13.

For the moment I am reminded of an old 1970's television series called Kung Fu, whereas Grasshopper once asked his physically blind master how is it that he {his master} could hear in the woods and fields the movements and motion of a small living thing. The master replied, O Grasshopper, how is it that you cannot hear?

Now beloved, is there life after the apostolic {and Prophetic}?

Yes there is!

Does this mean we are to abandon the present dimensions of the apostolic {and prophetic} for something deeper in the Spirit?

No!

Rather, we are to discern that in our Kairos time, there are some present truth developments which must take place, something we are to fulfill in our time and generation. We are to apprehend and to grasp the valuable and transforming truths for our time, as we make way for a new pattern and development of the Spirit for the next level of the saints in corporate destiny. We must never get stuck on gifting at the exclusion of the Father's good pleasure for mankind, for there is a bigger picture involved. Meaning, the saints across the earth are echoing out fresh new meaning to these words, "Global, Totality, Purpose, Destiny, Kingdom, Dominion, & Fullness!" {Yet, these are not mere words, but vitally important dimensions of the Spirit indeed}

For after we have prophesied correctly, learned all of the important techniques on becoming a prophet, training extensively in "militant Christianity" with a warriors passion to engage the enemy, developed all of the fundamentals on becoming a bible based church, and have answered the unofficial questionnaire to estimate whether or not we have met the conditions and criteria to associate and qualify with the most prolific and most recognized authorities of the apostolic and prophetic dimension, then what's next?

A reinstatement or renewal of the old Charismatic wineskin? No!
A justification of treating the apostolic like a country club, members only? No!
A need to be recognized as a pioneer of the apostolic and prophetic wave? No!
A co-dependency of certain spiritual experiences to validate our existence? No!

What is necessary for the corporate body to enter into the Ancient of Days, is not another lesson on how to harness the illuminating gifts of God, but to return to the Principal Thing {Proverbs 4:7} - Wisdom. For in all of the trends, fads, and styles of the world and church, what shall last forever, prophesy? No, Tongues? No! But, through the Person of the Lord {Love on Wheels} - 1 Corinthians 13 and Ephesians 3:19, the Love of Christ shall past all mere knowledge, filling us with HIS Fullness.

In the Wisdom of God and the Administration of the Ages, you can never get enough wisdom; you can never have too much wisdom. But again, knowledge without the nature and person of Wisdom {Christ the Wisdom of God - 1st Corinthians 1:24} is a puffed up thing. Many centers of learning are banking on right knowledge, but beloved, let us continue to acknowledge Wisdom the Principal Thing, and our lives shall become as an interwoven tapestry, a conduit, a venue and vehicle of expression; bringing to life the Wisdom of the Ages in every sphere of our life. For the greatest movements or unfolding messages up ahead shall not be marked by how gifted we are, or how anointed we really think we are. Rather, the Ancient Paths of Jeremiah 6:16 shall answer all of life's challenging questions, with a view from the hidden realm to put to rest our souls from the anguish and frustration therein, so that in all truth, we can live again!
Ah! There is life after an apostolic or prophetic conference! There is a divine conferral of the Wisdom of God and the Ancient Paths beyond the initial experience of receiving a prophetic word! There is more to come beloved!
After all, the law of circularity simply says, "We come from the Father, and shall return unto Him." We are becoming by divine revelatory enlightenment who we really are, who we have always been in Him. In all truth, our place did not begin in the outer court, but from within the holy of holies.

For Isaiah 33:6 says that "Wisdom and Knowledge shall be the Stability of our times..." We are pursuing daily to live from a hidden dimension that shall swallow up all other dimensions, including Charismatic, Dogmatic, and being Schismatic. Ecclesiastically, whatever we have found our worth, value, and esteem in, is nothing to be compared to the Wisdom of the Ages, the Eternal Judgments of God, His thoughts, Passions, and Purposes for all times. In this beloved, shall a people arise that shall manifest HIM in all that HE IS as Christ becomes ALL in ALL...All of the operations and administrations of the Spirit is simply taking us into something wonderful, something everlasting. Enjoy the ride beloved! Isaiah 58:14. For true destiny is not alone a what, but WHOM – HIM

We trust that this time of sharing has been a strategic blessing to you, as we are preparing now for new apostolic, prophetic, kingdom, and destiny centers throughout greater Houston, the nation, and the world. We are positioned for possession in our progression, and we are feeding the seed and nurturing HIS nature. The time to favor you has come, and remember, you are highly flavored {favored} of the Lord. You are an instrument of His present technology in the earth, a king-priest ministry after the order of Melchisedec. It is of utmost urgency that we walk in the present dimension of the Spirit and His Now and proceeding word. It is of far most importance to become a rhythm of the Spirit and a change agent in bringing revolutionary and radical change to our world. Why? We are not here to fit, but to change our world through Dominion {Genesis 1:26, 28}.

Apostolic blessings to all, as we prepare to saturate greater Houston in the eternal purpose of God, and the destiny dimension of the saints in the earth. It is Houston's time to move into the greater glory of the kairos crossover, to vanquish beyond and to take new territory in the Spirit and the natural. May we assemble and mobilize for apostolic globalization, and to walk in the momentum of the Spirit for bringing Houston into the forefront of its destiny.

Houston, we have a solution!

100 years ago today William J. Seymour came to Houston and was moved by the Spirit of the Lord for a new and glorious day in the church and the nations. Unlike some of his predecessors William Seymour had not only a passion to see countless many filled with the Holy Spirit but was infused with a present revelation to see racial reconciliation among the saints as well. His written book which most people don't know about entitled "The Doctrines and Disciplines of the Azusa Street Apostolic Faith Mission of Los Angeles, California in 1915" further detailing his core values and convictions as a man of God for setting the established assemblies in order. He had a heart and passion for global reformation not alone mere revival. It is evident that the Apostolic Faith Mission that he had overseen, along with his publication to over 50,000 people worldwide, and the presence of God upon his work which spearheaded one of the most glorious dimensions in the earth today was indicative of the significant truth that his calling was that of an apostle. Seymour, who was born in Centerville Louisiana to the parents of freed slaves, was also born in much poverty amid the reconstructed south.

Racism was the monster giant of his time and after some upbringing he moved to the Midwest to further his call of God. Later he came to Houston for a present move of God, and later went to Los Angeles to shepherd an assembly there. What had taken place in Azusa that had changed the world was destined to have been released over Houston in 1906. Next year 2006 marks the anniversary of the move of God from Azusa to the nations, but it actually began in seed form in 1905 or 100 years ago as William received revelation from God and quickened in Spirit from the school of ministry in HOUSTON, TX founded by Charles Parham of Topeka, Kansas. Later after the Azusa outpouring Charles Parham, who was later revealed to have supported the KKK foundation, became sick to his stomach upon knowledge that William J. Seymour was conducting meetings composed of blacks and whites {The real motive in part was that he himself was not credited supposedly to the outpour among William Seymour and that his ties with racist groups only spawned more racist beliefs}. He and some other notables opposed the idea of blacks, whites joining together to worship God. Parham was one of the main reasons why there was a split in the Azusa Street Mission. Though Seymour was alleged by some critics as being racist for having predominately black presence in leadership, that only proved to be the nagging quarell and biased slant of the racial bigotry that had enormously surmounted due to the presence of a black leader in leadership of a cultural diverse group, via, Azusa Street Mission.

It is in our estimation that there is come a corporate cleansing from racism on either end in the church. My friend Apostle Jeff Edwards of Kansas City, and founder of JEMI treats this subject with clarity and expertise. We ministered together in Las Vegas some time ago, and he has a sure word to revolutionize the African American community into coming into their purpose and destiny, and to enjoy their uniqueness in quality representation in advancing the kingdom in powerful demonstrations of the Spirit.

According to 2 Peter 1:5-7 Peter the apostle encourages us to walk in the 7-fold dimension of maturity, but the key action verse was found in verses 8-9. Peter says that if these things BE {Being} in us and ABOUND {Abundant Life}, we will not be barren {idle} nor unfruitful in the revelatory and intimate knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. But if we lack these things we are blind {no vision and direction} and cannot SEE MORE {Hosea 6:2} or afar off {The New Day}, and has forgotten who and whose we are in the Messiah. Meaning, what does it really mean to be prophetic and apostolic when we are not being and abounding in the "Add to your Faith" 1 - Virtue - {moral excellence}, 2 - knowledge {intimate revelatory}, 3 - temperance {self-control}, 4 - patience {endurance}, 5 - godliness {holiness}, 6 - brotherly kindness {Philadelphia - love of the brethren}, and 7 - Charity {1 Corinthians 13}. Without these we then need to return to base zero. Without these in BEING and in ABOUNDING we may not fully embrace the full stature of Christ.

Nevertheless a greater day is upon Houston as we have moved from visitation to habitation. As William Seymour lead the Apostolic Faith Mission at 312 Azusa Street, so shall Houston become a major epicenter and strategic launching of the apostolic and prophetic dimension NOW. Seymour now gives way for the global church of Houston and the world to SEE MORE as Hosea 6:2 say "On the Third Day we shall LIVE in HIS Sight or FORESIGHT or INSIGHT. Houston shall become a household name as nations from all over the earth shall come and marvelously receive and be released into the boldness, brightness, and beauty of a brand new day. Houston shall be a major portal for the apostolic launching of mentalities to shift from church to kingdom and shall take on a global mentality to change our world through dominion. So let us move forwardly in prayer, praise, and the prophetic dimension be intermingled with apostolic proclamations and decrees as Houston NOW shines forth among this region as a Third Day City, a Prophetic Community, and an Apostolic Centre. Let us rejoice Houston, for the time to favor you has come. Strategies are already underway to make ready a people prepared for the Lord. Be open for upcoming meetings and assemblages and get ready for the ride of your LIFE. Love to all, and we R HEAR 4 U!

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Below, a quote from one of the recipients in the Azusa Street outpour...An historical update making way for the Greater Day

By Holiness Evangelist Frank Bartleman

Friday, June 15, at "Azusa," the Spirit dropped the "heavenly chorus" into my soul. I found myself suddenly joining the rest who had received this supernatural "gift." It was a spontaneous manifestation and rapture no earthly tongue can describe. In the beginning this manifestation was wonderfully pure and powerful. We feared to try to reproduce it, as with the "tongues" also. Now many seemingly have no hesitation in imitating all the "gifts." No one could understand this "gift of song" but those who had it. It was indeed a "new song" in the Spirit. When I first heard it in the meeting a great hunger entered my soul to receive it. I felt it would exactly express my pent up feelings. I had not yet spoken in "tongues." But the "new song" captured me. It was a gift from God of high order, and appeared among us soon after the "Azusa" work began. No one had preached it. The Lord had sovereignly bestowed it, with the outpouring of the "residue of oil," the "Latter Rain" baptism of the Spirit. It was exercised, as the Spirit moved the possessors, either in solo fashion, or by the company. It was sometimes without words, other times in "tongues." The effect was wonderful on the people. It brought a heavenly atmosphere, as though the angels themselves were present and joining with us. And possibly they were. It seemed to still criticism and opposition, and was hard for even wicked men to gainsay or ridicule.

Some have condemned this "new song," without words. But was not sound given before language? And is there not intelligence without language also? Who composed the first song? Must we necessarily follow some man's composition, before us, always? We are too much worshippers of tradition. The speaking in "tongues" is not according to man's wisdom or understanding. Then why not a "gift of song?" It is certainly a rebuke to the "jazzy" religious songs of our day. And possibly it was given for that purpose. Yet some of the old hymns are very good to sing, also. We need not desire or treat lightly of them. Some one has said that every fresh revival brings in its own hymnology. And this one surely did.

In the beginning in "Azusa" we had no musical instruments. In fact we felt no need of them. There was no place for them in our worship. All was spontaneous. We did not even sing from hymnbooks. All the old well-known hymns were sung from memory, quickened by the Spirit of God. "The Comforter Has Come," was possibly the one must sung. We sang it from fresh, powerful heart experience. Oh, how the power of God filled and thrilled us. Then the "blood" songs were very popular. "The life is in the blood. "Sinai, Calvary, and Pentecost, all had their rightful place in the "Azusa" work. But the "new song" was altogether different, not of human composition. It cannot be successfully counterfeited. The crow cannot imitate the dove. But they finally began to despise this "gift," when the human spirit asserted itself again. They drove it out by hymnbooks, and selected songs by leaders. It was like murdering the Spirit, and most painful to some of us, but the tide was too strong against us. Hymnbooks today are largely a commercial proposition, and we would not lose much without most of them. The old tunes, even, are violated by change, and new styles must be gotten out of every season, for added profit. There is very little real spirit of worship in them. They move the toes, but not the hearts of men. The spirit of song given from God in the beginning was like the Aeolian harp, in its spontaneity and sweetness. In fact it was the very breath of God, playing on human heartstrings, or human vocal cords. The notes were wonderful in sweetness, volume and duration. In fact they were of times humanly impossible. It was "singing in the Spirit."

Brother Seymour was recognized as the nominal leader in charge. But we had no pope or hierarchy. We were "brethren." We had no human program. The Lord Himself was leading. We had no priest class, nor priest craft. These things have come in later, with the apostatizing of the movement. We did not even have a platform or pulpit in the beginning. All were on a level. The ministers were servants, according to the true meaning of the word. We did not honor men for their advantage, in means or education, but rather for their God-given "gifts" He set the members in the "body." Now" A wonderful and horrible thing is come to pass in the land. The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and My people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof." –Jer. 5:30, 31. Also "AS for my people, children are their oppressors (sometimes grown up ones), and women rule over them."
- Isa 3:12.

Brother Seymour generally sat behind two empty shoeboxes, one on top of the other. He usually kept his head inside the top one during the meeting, in prayer. There was no pride there. The services ran almost continuously. Seeking souls could be found under the power almost any hour, night and day. The place was never closed nor empty. The people came to meet God. He was always there. Hence a continuous meeting. The meeting did not depend on the human leader. God's presences become more and more wonderful. In that old building, with its low rafters and bare floors, God took strong men and women to pieces, and put them together again, for His glory. It was a tremendous overhauling process. Pride and self-assertion, self-importance and self-esteem, could not survive there. The religious ego preaches its own funeral sermon quickly.

No subjects or sermons were announced ahead of time, and no special speakers for such an hour. No one knew what might be coming, What God would do. All was spontaneous, ordered of the Spirit. We wanted to hear from God, through whoever he might speak. We had no "respect of persons" The rich and educated were the dame as the poor and ignorant, and found a much harder death to die. We only recognized God. All were equal. No flesh might glory in His presence. He could not use the self-only recognized opinionated. Those were Holy Ghost meetings, led of the Lord. It had to start in the poor surroundings, God. All were equal. No flesh might glory in His presence. He could not use the self- to keep out the selfish, human element. All came down in humility together, at His feet. They all looked alike, and had all things in common in that sense at least. The rafters were low, the tall must come down. By the time they got to "Azusa" they were humbled, ready for the blessing. The food was thus placed for the lambs, not for giraffes. All could reach it.

We were delivered right there from ecclesiastical hierarchism and abuse. We wanted God. When we first reached the meeting we avoided as much as possible human contact and greeting. We wanted to meet God first. We got our head under some bench in the corner in prayer, and met men only in the Spirit, knowing them "after the flesh" no more. The meetings started themselves, spontaneously, in testimony, praise and worship. The testimonies were never hurried by a call for "popcorn." We had no prearranged programmed to be jammed through the time. Our time was the Lord's. We had real testimonies from fresh heart-experience. Otherwise, the shorter the testimonies, the better. A dozen might be on their feet at one time, trembling under the mighty power of god. We did not have to get our cur from some leader. And we were free from lawlessness. We were shut up to God in prayer in the meetings, our minds on Him. All obeyed God, in meekness and humility. In honor we "preferred one another." The Lord was liable to burst through any one. We prayed for this continually. Some one would finally get up anointed for the message. All seemed to recognize this and gave way. It might be a child, a woman, or a man. It might be from the back seat, or from the front. It made no difference. We rejoiced that God was working. No one wished to show himself. We thought only of obeying God.

In fact there was an atmosphere of God there that forbade any one but a fool attempting to put himself forward without the real anointing. And such did not last long. The Spirit, from the throne controlled the meetings. Those were truly wonderful days. I often said that I would rather live six months at that time than fifty years of ordinary life. But God is just the same today. Only we have changed.

Some one might be speaking. Suddenly the Spirit would fall upon the congregation. God himself would give the altar call. Men would fall all over the house, like the slain in battle, or rush for the altar enmasse, to seek God. The scene often resembled a forest of fallen trees. Such a scene cannot be imitated. I never saw an altar call given in those early days. God himself would call them. And the preacher knew when to quit. When He spoke we all obeyed. It seemed a fearful thing to hinder or grieve the Spirit. The whole place was steeped in prayer, God was in His holy temple. It was for man to keep silent. The shekinah glory rested there. In fact some claim to have seen the glory by night over the building. I do not doubt it. I have stopped more than once within two blocks of the place and prayed for strength before I dared to go on. The presence of the Lord was so real.

Presumptuous men would sometimes come among us. Especially preachers who would try to spread themselves, in self-opinionating. But their effort was short lived. The breath would be taken from them. Their minds would wander, their brains reel. Things would turn black before their eyes. They could not go on. I never saw one get by with it in those days. They were up against God. No one cut them off. We simply prayed. The Holy Spirit did the rest. We wanted the Spirit to control. He wound them up in short order. They were carried out dead, spiritually speaking. They generally bit the dust in humility, going through the process we had all gone through. In other words they died out, came to see themselves in all their weakness, then in childlike humility and confession were taken up of God, transformed through the mighty "baptism" in the Spirit. The "old man" died with all his pride, arrogancy and good works. In my own case I came to abhor myself. I begged the Lord to drop a curtain so close behind me on my past that it would hit my heels. He told me to forget every good deed as though it had never occurred, as soon as it was accomplished anything for Him, lest my good works become a snare to me.

We saw some wonderful things in those days. Even very good men came to abhor themselves in the clearer light of God. The preachers died the hardest. But when God got through with them they gladly turned a new page and chapter. That was one reason they fought so hard. Death is not at all a pleasant experience. And strong men die hard.

The testimony of Frank Bartleman is excepted from his book, "How Pentecost Came to Los Angeles." Christian Life Books plans to republish the original book, unedited and with the original title.

FAP International {Ephesians 2:20} also F.A.P. Fathering Appointed People.

http://www.apostlesandprophets.net 7807 Long Point Road, Houston, 77055