The Last shall be first and the first be the Last

Several times Jesus brings this Word as He spoke to the contemporaries of His day. I have struggled to bring this series to fruition as I have been struggling with some personal processes of my own, and as I have referred in my Testimonial page concerning Safe New Futures, which you can browse their site by clicking on the link, I refer to them being the investment in the last 2 months into my life particularly coming to this post part of a series which we will discover what Jesus is referring to. The thing I personally try to do is approach is the messages in their objective value, not personalising too much subjective experiences but knowing that the Biblical message from Genesis to Revelation speaks for itself beyond my lack or my prolific amount of personal experience.

When Jesus begins to move in transition He changes the order

There are times when God bypasses the very people who are naturally qualified, either by their status, or their financial possession, or their natural ability to lead. However the major changes God brings into play throughout the Bible, God bypasses Kings, governments, priests and scribes. I find this facet very troubling because I do not want to be present in a sphere where God is bypassing, because what God bypasses means He is doing something elsewhere and I know where I am is going to come under His judgment. The Temple whose veil was rent, from bottom to top, symbolises the work He starts. He starts the changes not at the top, not with leaders, but with the “bottom” where the nobodies are.

When we look in Ezekiel 10, the Glory departs the Inner Place, and comes into the outer courts. Who is in the outer courts if it is not the people who have no ministerial or sacerdotal qualification. It seems that the Glory moves on those considered to be the Last, and brings them to be the First in the changes He is bringing. When Jesus is conceived, Mary, or Mariam, a “nobody” is lifted in the things and processes of God to a FIRST, and all those who passed their life studying missed God’s purpose at every turn. Does this mean we do not study the Word for fear of missing it? Do we purposely make ourselves a unintelligent and lazy last so that we qualify? NO. The case in question is the Apostle Paul, who studies with Gamaliel, the top scholar of his day. Yet in the moment Jesus confronts him, a first in Jewish world, made last in the Kingdom in that moment, because he is undone and blind. It is through a process of 3 years in the desert of Arabia, he learns that what he knew was nothing but a foundation for something better. The pendulum of his self esteem goes from believing he is right in attacking the Church, yet then Jesus confronts him, brings him to realise in his own delusions, to recognise that God was doing something new. Was he going to get with the programme?

I write this way because I feel we are at the Damascus Road moment, our dreams, our constructions are about to made blind in favour of a new direction. Maybe we need 3 days in our blindness to realise that what we made of the work of God, centring around ourselves, is now being swept away in favour of something new. So the teaching that Paul received, the revelation he sought in the desert dovetailed into a library of theological insight that forms the backbone of our New Testament.

For the order to be inverted, God must lift, must raise up contradiction and unexpected players in the process of the change. I am not trying to disrespect the orders, ministries, churches God cares to use in our day, I am specifically speaking to where change BEGINS. The major revolutions we have seen in history come from events as catalysts and they set on fire nations, and bring change. A Church, a leader that does not recycle, reappraise, renew is set on the course to have Jesus bypass us. This is most tragic because I sense whilst study of theology, setting apart for prayer for times, and years, to be content to live a life in communion with the Lord is what is needed in a time when politics and its injustices rise up and people are deceived to believe these are the vehicles of change. For the new things of God the first must make way for the last, so that He may bring an essence of eternity.

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In the anguish and pain is born a soul whose words did not fall to the ground

The type of process where the first shall be last and the last being first is moulded upon the anvil of personal brokenness and pain. We cannot forget the panorama of a corrupt tabernacle in 1 Samuel 1 where priest was in the priesthood for bread and for the benefits of the offering. The prophet comes to speak to Eli, words of great judgment that should have struck fear and trembling. Eli is resigned to a nasty end. The people abhor the offering and the priesthood and God is despised in His own House. Does this not strike you familiar?

Hannah is a “last” because she is considered despised as her womb is closed. Yet her rival bore many sons to their mutual husband Elkanah. She enters the Tabernacle and she pours out her soul to the Lord, even giving up ownership of the miracle God would give her. This type of spirit is needed today. God’s new work has only His ownership. And the child Samuel enters the Tabernacle to fulfil the vow, and within the greats in the priesthood God raises up a man whose words were fulfilled and held weight, so much so when he arrived in Bethlehem the elders of the place trembled. A man who saw priesthood killed at the hands of evil men, and the Ark taken into an alien land. Yet God was causing him to grow to help transition a nation to become a Kingdom. How did this happen? A woman despised in pain of soul, a last in the eyes of man, saw her estate exalted because she knew that what she sowed in the pain of her soul brought about the greatest transition in Israel.

In the forgotten fields worship to sheep was a school for a King

When God rejects Saul, in the midst of Samuel’s tears God takes the prophet to the house of Jesse. “Fill your horn with oil.” Was the command, because what God was about to do with the minor, last son of Jesse, was to lift him up to be the first in God’s land. The powerful Spirit of God departs from the first to descend upon the last and leave the former in torment. How many leaders today are in torment because the Spirit has departed? Isaiah 11 tells us what Spirit descends on David, is the same Messianic Spirit Jesus lived and we are coming into. How many judge with the sight of their eyes, and the hearing of their ears! What does this mean?`It means we have people in leadership who have no spiritual discernment and cannot recognise God’s David’s who will walk in the Fear of the Lord. This leadership “sees” a good strategy, “hears” about the reputation of another, but takes no time to seek God and get His Word. Is it by accident that David is called a man after Mine own Heart? This heart is marked by the years of intimacy in the fields whilst his brothers dressed in armor and went to famous battles. When a king’s armor was offered to David he rejected it, because he knew that human tools could not substitute for faith a zeal for God.

Samuel’s horn has to be full because only fulness will do to transition God’s land into the fulness of Kingdom. God is causing His Horns to come with fulness because nothing else will be sufficient in this day.

Concluding words

Let us begin to prepare for the first are already falling from their place. There is so much more that I could have said but I sense this for now is a good introduction. May we rejoice as we do what Peter and James say, that we humble ourselves beneath the authoritative Hand of God because in the measure we come under that Hand is the measure by which He will exalt us!

Until next time!

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