The coronavirus may be an outbreak, but God is breaking us out. It is a time of breaking out of the past … breaking out of your “escape room” you are trapped in. The keys are actually inside your room. He will carry you out … as you worship.
As I write, today is the first day of the first month of Aviv-Nisan. It is a new year … a new season where His glory falls, just like in Exodus 40 when the glory of God fell heavily as Moses and Aaron set up the tabernacle for the first time.
The Bible describes four key tabernacles (after the ancient altars of Genesis). The four tabernacles-temples begin with the desert tabernacle that Moses and Aaron, which they initially set up on the First of Aviv-Nisan … the new year. Actually, each of these four tabernacles have a strong link to the new year and the First of Aviv-Nisan …
- Desert Tabernacle (Exodus 40) – The desert Tabernacle was erected … and the glory of God fell
- First Temple – Solomon did not dedicate the First Temple (1 Kings 8) on the First of Aviv-Nisan, but later Hezekiah began the rebuilding/repairs and consecration of Solomon’s Temple (see 2 Chron 29) on the First of Aviv-Nisan
- Second Temple (Ezra 7:9) – Ezra left Babylon to go rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem, known as the Second Temple
- Third Temple (Ezekiel 45:18) – It seems the Third Temple will be consecrated on the first of Aviv-Nisan also (see The Voice of the Lord, edited by David Rudolph, devotional for the day Nisan 1).
This is a day and season to reflect upon the house of worship, rebuilding the tabernacle of David, and the glory of Lord falling upon us.
A few days after the Super Bowl, the glory of the Lord fell heavily during our congregation’s prayer meeting. “Prayer” never happened that day, as His presence was so thick that worship, silence, and tears were the only response we had. Since that day, the anointing at our gatherings has been significantly higher. Today on the First of Aviv-Nisan, our congregation’s leadership team will be meeting to worship again in a small group … anticipating another breakthrough.
The past seven weeks at our congregation’s meetings have typically been an extended worship time, where the sermon got squeezed out of the service due to the worship anointing. This “interrupted” our series on the book of Acts. In response, our emphasis has been on rebuilding the house of God. The passages of Haggai 1 and Isaiah 56 have been central. The phrase “worship our way through this season” has been emphasized repeatedly. Much of this took place prior to the coronavirus impacting us in Florida.
With the escalation of the coronavirus over the past four weeks, globally people are realizing the need to worship our way through this season. We may or may not know what to pray, how to pray, etc. Yet the Lord is near, tangible, active, responding, intentional, strategic, wise, merciful, and gentle. He can be trusted.
The coronavirus has already caused great chaos, along with some finding significant “rest time” to gain clarity from the Lord regarding this next season. The most pressing phrase I am sensing is the “house of worship.” We are “worshipping our way through” … as well as helping others not get distracted, discouraged, or removed from their place of worship. We are rebuilding a house of worship, and from that place the house of prayer for all nations will be built. The unity of Jew and Gentile prophesied in Isaiah 56 will take place if we are true worshippers. As the nations’ hearts are turned to worship, they will want to support Israel or the Messianic Movement. As Israel’s heart is turned to worship, she will connect with the Messiah.
Some are feeling a call to the night watch … some toward outreach. Most are feeling a call toward holiness. What is our response? The phrase “beginning of birth pangs” seems to be common amongst the leading prophetic voices right now. The other phrase that seems to be emphasized as a response to the coronavirus is related to pushing “reset,” receiving the pruning of the Lord, a call to holiness … as a way to increase our devotional walk as well as effectiveness in outreach.
Lord, may each of us respond to this call to holiness and outreach by worshipping through this season, establishing the house of worship, and trusting You to help us break out of the past and into this new and anointed season of history.