In speaking of Getting Ready for the Next Level it would behoove us to consider some basic meaning in that title. NEXT LEVEL: next step, next move, following step, what follows, next on the list, next stage, next phase, what comes next, follow-up, further action, future action, next in order. Getting Ready: Faith, stepping out, moving toward (not satisfied with status quo, with where we are, with just letting things bump along as is), not the same old attitude; not staying in the same rut. Ex.14:13-16,Amp—“Moses told the people, Fear not; stand still (firm, confident, undismayed) and see the salvation of the Lord which He will work for you today. For the Egyptians you have seen today you shall never see again. 14 The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace and remain at rest. 15 The Lord said to Moses, Why do you cry to Me? Tell the people of Israel to go forward!”The time is ripe for going forward to the next level, to that which beckons us onward to victory.
KATHY—Like Judah in 2Kings 17, we need an awakening. In the next chapter, 2Kings 18, Hezekiah became king of Judah and Awakening began. Hezekiah was AWARE they needed God and He took action to begin sanctifying the nation.He destroyed the local shrines, tore down the images of foreign gods, cut down the sacred pole for worshiping the goddess of sex and fertility and he also smashed the bronze snake Moses had made in the wilderness.Remember when fiery serpents were biting and killing them in the camp?God told Moses to put a brass serpent on a pole so people could see it and be healed.That was a one-time obedience that led to the intervention of God for their nation.Keeping that pole as a testimony from history to teach their children about God was understandable, but sticking that pole among the idols they were worshiping and making sacrifices to dishonored both God and the acts of God in their behalf. That generation had to have cooked the books (unethically change the meaning) of their own history to justify worshiping a SNAKE on a STICK. Our confidence must not be placed upon any past event or monument. Our confidence comes from the faithfulness of God.
Kathy–God didn’t put you on this earth to “age” out. He put you here to “purpose” out! God will be your strength today. Deut.33:25, Amp– “Your strongholds will be iron and bronze, And as your days are, so will your strength, your rest and security be.” Josh.14 :11–“I am still as strong today as I was the day Moses sent me; as my strength was then, so is my strength now, for war and for going out and coming in.”
Kathy — Whether your part is praying, giving, teaching, rescuing, speaking out, building, tearing down, taking on a project, starting a business, infiltrating the government mountain or media mountain or whatever else you see Him doing, GO for IT. Doing what the Father is doing is not about little shepherds facing big giants, it’s about DAVIDS facing GOLIATHS! Hear the difference? Participating with what Father is doing is not a matter of helpless pawns in a political machine, it’s DANIELS in the lion’s den! Doing Father’s business is not spiraling into despair, it’s NOAHS building the future through hell and high water. Doing what Father is doing is not slavery to the work-a-day world of business and finance, it’s MOSES’S leading in a path to a God-promise and a God-future. Doing Father’s business is not being puppets obligated to perpetuate traditions that do not display God’s power, it’s JOSIAHS born to start changing history by the age of eight. We have to SEE the difference to LIVE the difference, and we have to LIVE the difference to walk out what our Father is doing in earth as in heaven.
About the time of Moses Israel began to cry out, “Save us from Pharaoh!” Then suddenly, “Bam!” Snakes, staffs and bull frogs are flying in every direction. About the time of Jesus Israel cries, “Save us from Rome!” Then suddenly, “Bam!” Wind, fire, tongues and spiritual drunkenness hit them. God’s people are once again crying, “Save us!” Get ready for something unusual! Are you ready for the unconventional? (see Isa.55:8-9) Isa.33:22, The Passion Translation — “The Lord Yahweh is our Judge, our Lawgiver, and our King; He will save us completely!”
Before Moses was born Israel began to cry out, “Save us from Pharaoh!” Then 80 years later there was a suddenly: “Bam!” Snakes, staffs and bull frogs are flying in every direction. Before Jesus was born Israel cries, “Save us from Rome!” Then after 60 yrs. of Roman domination: suddenly, “Boom! Bam!” Wind, fire, speaking in tongues and spiritual drunkenness hit them. Then, following that, all manner of mind-blowing miracles, signs and wonders began to take place wherever the followers of Christ showed up. God’s people are once again crying, “Save us, O mighty God!” So… Get ready for something unusual, something that is unconventional! Are you ready for the unconventional? (Isa.55:8-9) We must have Something which is totally unconventional in comparison to what is already not working here. It will require to be absolutely radical in its makeup and its effect. But it is not being handed to us on a platter labeled “As Usual”, “The Good Ol’ Days”, “Return to 1950’s Revival” It is headed our way in a series of Whirlwinds called “Unconventional”! The items and agendas which make up “conventional” and “typical” are going to be flying in every direction just like Aaron’s staff and Egypt’s snakes and bull frogs. Nahum 1:3— “…the Lord hath His way in the whirlwind”
Most everyone desires to simply read about a sea-splitting God rather than being the one who was on the course that He had to split the sea for. There are a lot of people out there, there is a nation out there who need to hear from someone who has experienced, first-hand, the undeniable power of the Sea-Splitter. But they are only going to hear it from someone who has stayed the course in spite of threat and pressure. Jos.2:9-11, Msg — “Before the spies were down for the night, the woman came up to them on the roof and said, “I know that God has given you the land. We’re all afraid. Everyone in the country feels hopeless. We heard how God dried up the waters of the Red Sea before you when you left Egypt, and what he did to the two Amorite kings east of the Jordan, Sihon and Og, whom you put under a holy curse and destroyed. We heard it and our hearts sank. We all had the wind knocked out of us. And all because of you, you and God, your God, God of the heavens above and God of the earth below.”
Kathy — Works of darkness ultimately end in death. God makes the truth even more vivid pointing out to Pharaoh that He could have wiped out the nation rather than just plague it with blood, frogs, gnats, flies, death of livestock and boils. Yet Pharaoh stubbornly held his economic ace, intent upon keeping Israel as slaves. After the hail, Pharaoh was so strung out on his greed that he would not even listen to rational counsel from his own ranks. His own servants asked him if he understood that the plagues had destroyed Egypt and that he needed to get Moses out of the country! After the locusts, the Lord gave them a taste of the deep darkness they were allied with. Pharaoh tried at this point to negotiate saying they could leave but not take their livestock. His greed still blinded him to his hopeless situation. When Moses would not negotiate, Pharaoh banished him and threatened to kill him if he ever came before him again. Moses said, “You have spoken truly; I will never see your face again.” The lesson was over for both nations. The firstborn, the pride, the joy, the hope, the future of Egypt died. Discerning works or workers of darkness may not always be as obvious as in the showdown between Moses and the Egyptian magicians. It will not always be their acts and abilities that expose workers of darkness, but being confronted with truth and light will always reveal their motive and their source of power. The showdown between Moses and the magicians exposed everything.
Kathy — The source of their empowerment was limited which revealed it was not Almighty God. When Pharaoh asked Moses to pray the frogs abate, Moses said he would so that Pharaoh would know there is no one like the Lord God. However, Pharaoh recognizing that truth did not make him want to submit to that Lord God. When next came the biting gnats or mosquitoes, the magicians had reached their limit. They could not produce gnats from dirt and certainly couldn’t turn gnats back into dirt. The magicians themselves admitted to Pharaoh then, “This is the finger of God!” We can’t top that! Only God is All-Powerful. All the abilities and manifestations of darkness will forever be limited by comparison.
Kathy — The competitiveness of the Egyptian magicians was destructive to their own nation because their determined pride and worship of power was more important than loyalty or any benefit to their kingdom. In the beginning stages of the showdown, the magicians did the same supernatural acts as Moses, turning their rods to serpents, turning water to blood and producing frogs. It is interesting that the Egyptian magicians could not and did not even try to reverse the plagues loosed by Moses, (which would have been really beneficial to their nation.) Their only goal was to compete in a power display. Instead of trying to help, they simply battled to prove themselves superior, no matter what the cost to their people. Of course, it is also evident that they would not have been able to reverse the plagues. In Exodus 9:11, they could not even keep themselves from the boil plague and you know they would have invoked personal protection and relief to save their own hide if they could! There is a key insight exposed here about the nature of the powers of darkness: they are selfish and competitive. There is no loyalty or benevolence, just worship of power. Being interpreted, that means they will work against each other or their human agent when necessary. The human agent for darkness is totally deceived if he or she believes the powers of darkness will be loyal or trustworthy or ever think about unity of purpose or a common good. God can be trusted that His love and faithfulness insure His power is released for good. Since ONLY God is good, all other sources and agents have lesser motives. No matter how humanely and beneficently packaged, powers of darkness will always be deceptive and ultimately abusive. And those human agents who ally with darkness will ultimately face the hidden but costly consequences of betrayal.
God speaks the end while standing at the beginning (Isa.46:9-10). After speaking the end God must begin looking for some folks who will stay the course so that particular end may be realized. Someone must stay the course out of Egypt and remain standing before the Red Sea (without demanding relief) until it splits—so there can be witness to the fact that this God truly is a sea-splitter. Isa.46:9-10, TPT—“Remember the miracles of long ago. Acknowledge that I am God, and there is no other. I am God, and there is none like me. 10 I declare from the beginning how it will end and foretell from the start what has not yet happened. I decree that my purpose will stand, and I will fulfill my every plan.”
After following Moses out and being freed from such a prolonged miserable ordeal, Israel was willing to return to their former situation because they had now come up against unconventional circumstances. They resisted adjusting to the freedoms and responsibilities of promise. It takes courage to sail beyond the familiar harbor in order to possess and share the riches beyond the next horizon. Lk.15:17-18, Amp — “But when he [finally] came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have more than enough food, while I am dying here of hunger! 18 I will get up and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight.”
You can be a slave to fear, heritage or habit. In the master-slave relationship there is a demand and response required. Those enslaving factors put demands on you and you spend your days responding. Defeats will linger on in your life for as long as you are willing to learn to live with them. But the Lamb has already been sacrificed and this is your day of walking out! Ex.12:31, NASB — “Then he called for Moses and Aaron at night and said, “Rise up, get out from among my people, both you and the sons of Israel; and go, worship the Lord, as you have said.”
About the time of Moses Israel began to cry out, “Save us from Pharaoh!” Then suddenly, “Bam!” Snakes, staffs and bull frogs are flying in every direction. About the time of Jesus Israel cries, “Save us from Rome!” The suddenly, “Bam!” Wind, fire, tongues and spiritual drunkenness hit them. God’s people are once again crying, “Save us!” Get ready for something unusual! Are you ready for the unconventional? (Isa.55:8-9)
The result of Moses taking things into hand within an acceptable timeframe were: (1.) only one Egyptian out of the way; (2.) the status of Israel remained unchanged; and (3.) Moses has just paid full tuition for the next 80 semesters of “The Wilderness Theological Seminary.” After experiencing the wilderness, however, Moses was then ready to receive the mandate that he had been set aside 80 yrs. earlier to carry out. (Heb.3:5)
With God, what you do not see in this moment is entirely possible in the next moment. (1) The Red Sea did not part until Moses stretched out his rod over the water; (2) 5,000 people remained hungry until Jesus began to break the bread and fish of a small boy’s lunch; (3) Bartemaeus was blind until Jesus spoke to him: “On your way,” said Jesus. “Your faith has saved and healed you. IN THAT VERY INSTANT he recovered his sight and followed Jesus down the road.” (Mk.10:52); (4) large, stone vessels had no wine in them until the water reached the rim of the vessels. Those who witnessed the condition of the person or circumstance in each of those situations were not watching to see the outcome that was brought about by the instant intervention of Yahweh, but in each case there was at least one person available to be a cooperating partner with Yahweh’s intention.
Pharaoh said, “They are entangled in the wilderness.”(Ex14:3) Entangled means “involved”. It would appear that, in the present, they were so worried about rocks, brush and varmints that they forgot about the freedom on the other side of wilderness. “Coming out” may look different and require different decisions and actions than we originally predicted. But going back is not an alternative.
As the people of God assemble today may they realize afresh that Pharaoh’s snakes and their handlers were handled quite effectively by Aaron’s rod (Yahweh’s authority). Yahweh’s heavenly authority exercised through his representatives on earth swallowed up the instruments of threat and intimidation from darkness. Yahweh’s Kingdom is ever-increasing and He still desires His authority to be displayed in the earth to the glory of His name and the advancing of His purposes. ”Pharaoh called in his wise men and sorcerers. The magicians of Egypt did the same thing by their incantations: each man threw down his staff and they all turned into snakes. But then Aaron’s staff swallowed their staffs.” (Ex.7:11-12, Msg)
By appointment of God Almighty (Ex.7:8-12), Moses and Aaron (leaders of one of the smallest nations on earth, which happened to be in covenant with Yaweh) courageously walked into the most powerful throne room on earth and demanded the freedom of the enslaved Israelites. The truth of Jahweh’s covenant (Ex.2:23-24) was that Israel was free and when confronted with that divine truth, Pharaoh called upon his wizards and thinkers and advisers to oppose that truth and its representatives. That confrontation of divine truth brought out the snakes! Things got real ugly real quick. There came forth rapidly spit incantations, the bellowing of ominous sounding chants and nasty snakes hissing and slithering, all with accompanying bells and metallic clanking of cultic accoutrements. It all appeared and sounded as though the pit of hell had regurgitated its evil confusion in the middle of regal opulence. When the truth is put forth and someone takes a stand on it in any generation, “the snakes” and their “handlers” will puff up and threateningly hiss their protests. Nevertheless, there will always be those prepared by God who will stand unmovable upon the truth though it be in the face of “snakes”.
We have an unshakeable Kingdom that is ever-increasing and that is why “Pharaoh’s snakes” are manifesting and making a show of themselves with their threatenings and attempting to intimidate. Those of the Light stand up, confront and contradict opposition like the disciples did in Acts 4:29 — “And now they’re at it again! Take care of their threats and give your servants fearless confidence in preaching your Message.” God’s Word, standards and truth will never be drug upon the auction block. I heard it said recently, “Truth sounds like hate to those who hate the truth”. One of my old professors Dr. Anthony Palma wrote a book entitled, “Truth: Antidote for Error”. Truth will contradict darkness and darkness will, in its humanistic determination, defensively and vehemently respond.
There are certain things we can expect if we have been “eating” things like the gruel of bitterness or disappointment. Such a diet renders one unable to give birth. There is no birthing of the promise of God in an embittered spirit. That which God desires to perform in and through us has no “fertile womb” in which it can be conceived when infected by bitterness. A wounded spirit is more difficult to heal than a broken body. It is more subtle, yet more devastating.Cf.”A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones (Prov.17:22).”Fraud, adultery and divisions in organized religion have not together taken a toll on the church to the extent that embittered spirits have. But no matter how devastated you may be, God has prepared deliverance. Before Israel could even come up with a plan of escape, God had a plan in a deliverer called Moses. No prison or chain is too great or too old for God to break (cf.Jer.30:8). (Excerpt from Marty Gabler’s book “Sheep Have Short Legs”) CLICK HERE to view Marty and Kathy’s books.
Moses was nourished in his father’s house for three months (Ex.2:1). Anything marked for the purposes of God must be nourished within us and given ability to stand. Giving ability to stand is in the basic meaning of nourish. “By faith Moses’ parents hid him for three months after he was born, because they saw he was no ordinary child, and they were not afraid of the king’s edict (Heb.11:23).” That dream God gives is no ordinary dream. Feed it. Nourish it. The false report may say, “Oh, but it is so skinny and frail, it’s almost dead.” Nourish it. It will come back strong. Someone may say, ”Oh, but there may not even be an ember left because the original fire was built so long ago.” Patiently and persistently stir and feed the fire. It will come to flame again.
Protesting is getting louder and nastier but the truth still contradicts those who despise it. The truth will never go away and it will never be compromised. Truth will never be put on the auction block. The longer the representatives of God’s truth stand in “Pharaoh’s court” and speak truth, the greater the number of “snakes” will manifest themselves. But God’s rod in Aaron’s hand swallowed up Pharaoh’s undesirable, intimidating snakes. (Ex.7:8-12 and Matt.10:26) We will see even more and nastier snakes manifest before all this is over. But they must manifest before they are swallowed up in authoritative truth.
When we do see a demonstration of the Power of the Kingdom of God, we need to train ourselves to hold steady. The point is to know God’s intent and purpose for the visit. The purpose of God for the disciples was evidently for them to get a realization of unlimited Power, a foretaste of the Power of sons interacting with the spirit realm. God’s intent in the actual conversation between Jesus and the prophets on the Mount of Transfiguration was not revealed for us, but the interaction was an impacting experience. (Fifth excerpt from Kathy’s article “Anticipating the Power of the Kingdom”)