The Wicket Gate –No Other Way
Rosalind and I were present at a conference held in Exeter, Devonshire, England, during the last few days of 1967. It was a watershed conference inasmuch as it proved to be a time of prophetic outpouring, whereby the Lord held out His hand to us all, and explained the terms, the only terms that He could accept for the way ahead.
The conference had been convened as a “Prayer and Waiting Conference”, and there were about 350 attending. The “charismatic movement” had not even started. It was an in-between time, sitting on top, as it were, of the previous 40 years of Pentecostalism, and all were anxious to know the way ahead. There was a distinct air of expectancy.
Those who planned the conference were later to become the founding fathers of the charismatic movement inEngland, and their names became household words. But in this paper, over 40 years later, we believe it is important to look back and review what the Lord said at that conference, and check out our lives in accordance with the direction given. Two prominent members of the conference were used by the Lord to convey the message, and this will be given in full. We would ask our readers to see and appreciate just how biblical the message was.
THE MINISTRY OF THE CRUCIFIED
Blind when you should be seeing;
eyes that cannot perceive when they should know
the glory of my calling;
lives that are bound in the greyest twilight when they should be entering into the brightness of the presence of the Lord.
How is it that my people are in darkness
when I have left them light?
How is it that they are hungry when I am their bread?
How is it that hungering after truth,
they are not able to consume it or take it?
How is it that there is a negative answer, dullness,
and lack of perception
amongst those who are my children, my elect?
How is it, says the Lord, that you have been brought thus far and yet your spirit is in bondage?
There is that which holds you back from the glory of God.
How is it that there is this power drawing you back when the Lord is calling you into that which is His fullness,
into the revelation of His body,
into the understanding of the mystery of the body of Christ?
The Lord is calling you out of darkness.
The ministry of the Crucified is a ministry of healing
and of giving sight to the blind,
and yet each one of you must come as that one alone,
not as a crowd but as one,
and the favour of the Lord God shall be placed upon your spirit,
and you shall discover where you have failed your God,
and where was the controversy
between you and the Spirit of the Lord.
Yes, you shall know, you shall discover
that which has been within you for many years,
over which there has been a long forgotten controversy.
Even there shall the Lord bring you again,
and you shall discover that already in your spirit you have known what has hindered you,
what has held the blind upon you,
that which has closed your vision of the Lord God,
that which has kept down the veil upon you.
You shall know it and recognise it,
and of all things that you have loved,
for the Lord is calling each man to the place of the cross.
THE WAY TO THE “OTHER SIDE”
Is there not a way, says the Lord?
Is there not a way through the stormy seas?
Is there not a way through the wilderness, and the barren place, and the parched ground?
Is it not the Lord your God who leads you
even through the storm and through the wilderness
into the place that He has appointed?
Though you cannot see the end,
and though you cannot see the way that the Lord is leading you,
are you not to trust yourself into His hands and know
that He is leading by the right way?
And though there be times when things seem dark and uncertain,
though there be times when it seems the end is not being reached,
is it not then that you are to trust and not be afraid?
For it is the Lord your God who teaches you to profit,
and even in the present state of wilderness and confusion,
is it not thus that I am teaching you
and preparing you and training you?
Is it not thus that I am fitting you for that large place, that place of bounty, that place of richness and of abundance?
For thus is your God fitting you and preparing you
that you might be such that you can be entrusted with my blessing,
even with the authority
with which I will clothe my church in these end days.
Therefore take heart;
be not disconcerted or confused in your mind
because you cannot reason your way through.
It is not for you to reason says the Lord,
it is for you to trust and not to be afraid.
Even yield yourselves into my hand
and I will take you by the right path,
yea, I will lead you through the stormy seas
and bring you into the haven of your desire.
For I do not mock my children,
but I show them the way, I show them the vision,
and I give them the revelation on the mountain top,
and then I bring them into the valley of testing and trial,
that I might fit them and prepare them for that which I have shown them on the mountain top.
Therefore have I called you aside to be at the quiet place,
here at the place of calling on me,
that you might receive the revelation of my will,
and know what I am about to do.
And then I will fulfil my purpose even though you,
and you will find the place in the great secret of my plan,
and you shall indeed be those who function in the body of my Son,
and those who fulfil their high and heavenly calling,
for unto this have I appointed you from before the foundation of the world, says your God.
PERSONAL AND CORPORATE JONAHS
[The following prophecy followed an expository talk on the Book of Jonah]
Have I not chosen the pit?
Is not the pit the instrument in my hand
by which I fashion and shape my servants, be they the Josephs, or the Jeremiahs, or the Jonahs?
Do I not take them and place them in the pit,
a place of confinement,
a place of restraint,
a place of seeming bondage,
though it is not the bondage of the world
or the bondage of the enemy.
It is the bondage of your God,
by which I may hold them as in a vice,
and shape them and prepare them as tools for my work.
And even as I have spoken unto you this day by my servant,
so I take my Jonahs and bring them into the place of death,
that I might bring them into the place of life.
I bring them into the place that is dread and dark,
that I might bring them into the light and liberty
and fruitfulness of my purpose.
And thus my children I would not have you draw back
or shrink from the pit,
for is not this the way your Lord and Master went?
Did He not say that He would give to the generation no sign
but the sign of the prophet Jonah,
that as Jonah went down into that place of death,
so would He be three days and three nights
in the heart of the earth?
It is the way your Master went. Should not the servant tread it still?
For even as you are willing for this death,
so shall you also be planted in the likeness of His resurrection.
Even as you are willing for this place of self-crucifixion,
even as I have ministered unto you through my word,
this being planted in the likeness of the death of my Son,
so shall you be planted in the likeness of His resurrection.
This is the place of life and liberty,
and this is the place of fruitfulness,
and I deal with you individually in this,
and I take you down even through circumstances and situations,
those that you would avoid, and those that you would eschew,
and those from which you would shrink back in fear.
I lead you there and bring you there
by the engineering of your circumstances,
that I may make you what in your hearts you long to be.
Therefore, why do you fear?
Why do thoughts arise in your hearts?
Why do you surmise and wonder fearfully
concerning the future and all that it holds?
Does it not hold the guiding hand of your God?
Is it not that I lead you by my Spirit that I may bring you
where I would have you to be?
You have desired, have you not, to be fruitful?
You have desired that you might be blessed and used.
You have desired that souls might be saved.
Then if this is the way of the Lord, will you shrink back
and withdraw from this way?
Will you not trust yourself into my hands, for my hands are tender,
whether it be the pit or the crucible,
is it not I who sit as the Refiner and Purifier of silver?
And though it may seem that the flames are hot,
and the crucible is such that you would not yourselves have desired,
is it not that your Lord is thus doing in you,
that He might fulfil the deepest desires of your heart?
And yet I would further reveal unto you this day
that I have a greater purpose.
Even as I am working in you individually,
so I am working in you corporately by my Spirit.
For I not only have individual Jonahs,
whom I would use as my messengers,
but I am preparing in these last days a corporate Jonah.
For I have a messenger I will send forth unto the nations,
even unto those who know not my name
even unto those who have not heard my fame and my glory.
I will raise up and I will purify a corporate Jonah, for I will have a corporate instrument in my hand.
But this is an instrument that must also go down into the depths,
into the waters, into the darkness, into the death of my Son,
and must come forth in resurrection power.
And this is a Jonah that shall bear upon him the mark of a sign.
He shall be a sign, this Jonah of mine, unto the nations.
He shall bear upon him the mark of the supernatural,
and the mark of the miraculous,
and his word shall be authenticated by my power.
For I will send him with a message to the nations,
even as I sent Jonah long ago.
He had a prophetic message and my Jonah today
shall have a prophetic message.
It shall be a message of judgement,
but it shall be a message of grace;
it shall be a message of warning, yet it shall be a message of hope.
For out of this message shall come repentance,
for you will yet see, my people,
a day when the Ninevites shall turn from their sins,
turn even with repentance, with sackcloth and ashes,
unto the Lord their God.
There shall be a great turning,
there shall be a great crying,
there shall be a great repentance.
And there shall be multitudes in the valley of decision in that day,
when my word goes forth authenticated by the power of my Spirit.
But I must yet prepare my servant,
my servant for the hour of my corporate Jonah.
And even those who are willing to go through with me in the personal experience of death,
shall be made fit for that corporate experience of blessing.
They shall take part in this mighty movement of my Spirit
in these end days,
and they shall see with their eyes and partake
of that glory that I will reveal,
and they will see my power made manifest,
and they will see the great ingathering of the last harvest
before my Son returns from heaven.
Therefore I say unto you, take heart.
Though it is a dark day, it is a day of hope, a day of possibility,
a day when I am moving in you by my Spirit,
preparing my servant for my hour.
Therefore I say unto you as you go forth from this time,
be much before me with the word,
be much before me in the spirit of prayer,
be much in the waiting before your God,
and you shall hear my voice,
and I will give further revelations and further confirmation
of those things which in these days
I have been revealing through my servants.
You shall know through my word
that this is the voice of the Lord your God
and you shall therefore have confidence.
And the revelation of my Spirit shall breed and raise and develop and cultivate faith in your hearts,
and you shall be men and women of faith.
For only through faith can my purposes be wrought out,
only though faith can there be
an overcoming of the powers of darkness,
only through faith can there be a breaking through of the tremendous barriers that exist,
that the word of God might reach the nations
and turn them from darkness unto light.
Therefore be encouraged and strengthened,
for I have brought you to the kingdom even for such a time as this.
And I will take you up and use you
as you yield yourselves and are willing to pay the price
and to pay the vow to go through with me.
I will use you for the accomplishment of my purposes,
says the Lord.
To sum up, the Lord was saying that the cross was to be the foundation of all things in our lives. John Bunyan put it graphically in his “Pilgrim’s Progress”. He used the symbol of the cross, where burdens are lifted, followed by alittle wicket gate, and unless one were to enter “the way” by that gate, he would be disqualified, as were the men who climbed over the wall to travel along with Christian, albeit with the same goal in mind, but refusing to enter by the required gate.
Finally, the prophecy speaks of the call to yield, to make a definite response to the Lord’s word. Nothing would be automatic. The last paragraph made that abundantly clear. So therefore, our initial salvation is a work of pure grace that no man can earn, and although the training programme that follows requires much from us, that also is governed by God’s grace after we yield to His call. The Lord’s promise was to “engineer our circumstances” to bring us to the culmination of His plan.
To some who attended the conference, the words the Lord spoke were like heavenly dewfall, giving life after times of dryness and perplexity. A great inward excitement was experienced. The mention of trials and tribulations in the prophecies was not foremost in the mind. It was rather that the Lord had given fresh revelation, and placed a goal of great splendour before the eyes, and therefore, coming away from the conference, one was able to “walk on air.”
The following words of a song written by Reilly, and sung by Judith Durham of the Seekers, the Australian folk group who took Britain by storm in 1966-1968, just seemed to sum up the buoyancy of spirit experienced just then. Some may say that this is pure romanticism. Of course it is! And why not? Is it not right and proper to have a spirit of adventure, a heavenly goal, a dignity and purpose in life? We shall be attaching several other songs to these words of prophecy, as and when they seem appropriate.
COLOURS OF MY LIFE
I can’t seem to get my sleep now any old night,
Mr Sandman passes by my door,
Life has changed since You’ve been there to say it’s all right,
You taught me to understand what I thought couldn’t be,
Don’t mind missing sleep if I can see
COLOURS OF MY LIFE,
You’ve got love to fill my heart,
I don’t need a rainbow with colours of my life.
Colours blend with love to show I’m happy with You,
I can never be the same again,
Now my eyes are looking past the life that I knew,
I’ll be shedding black and grey
to take on red and blue,
Colours I can feel like touching You!
Colours of my life bloom like flowers in my heart,
Loving You has shown me colours of my life.