Mt. 12:4 π Mt. 15:14 π Mt. 20:27 π Mt. 23:2-3 π Mt. 24:49-51 π Mk. 2:26 π Lk. 6:4 π Jn. 4:23 π Jn. 6:45 π Jn. 8:32 π Rom. 8:9 π Eph. 4:11-16 π 2 Ths. 2:9 π 1 Tim. 3:5 π 1 Tim. 3:1-13 π 1 Tim. 3:15 π 2 Tim. 3:10-14 π Heb. 8:10-11 π Heb. 10:21 π Heb. 11:7 π 1 Pet. 2:5 π 1 Pet. 4:17 π 2 Pet. 2:5-7 π 1 Jn. 2:3-4 π 1 Jn. 2:27 π 1 Jn. 5:4 π Rev. 22:15
My wife and I were visiting a church in the middle of September, l996. During the worship portion of the service, we were singing a song that I knew. As I sang the song, I closed my eyes so that I could focus easier. It was while I was singing that I had a vision. The vision was in color and it came very quickly. This was what I saw:
A large high-back chair was facing me. The back and seat of the chair was a very deep red. The texture and quality of the chair was very expensive in appearance. Placed on the seat of the chair was a small saucer, and on this saucer was a small bread crumb. This bread crumb was small enough to fit into a bird's beak. Since we were all standing while we were singing the chair was elevated to my eye level in the spirit.
After the church service was over, I shared with my wife the vision I had. As I pondered what the symbols meant, I knew that the chair represented authority. I knew that when a servant stands to serve, he is not allowed to sit. The one who sits has authority over the one who stands to serve. I had no clue what the saucer represented. I figured that the bread crumb had something to do with the Word of God or something along that line. After praying over this vision for a week and not getting wisdom on how to interpret it correctly, I called a prophet that I walk with for his assistance in interpreting the vision. Jack Leavitt and I prayed and asked God for His help in the interpretation of the vison.
Jack Leavitt said, "This is what the Lord is saying:
"This vision is both local and national in scope. It applies both to the church we were in and includes many of the churches across the nation. The chair represents the authority of the pastors and ministers who oversee God's house. The saucer represents the size of plate on which they serve the meal to the congregations they oversee. The small bread crumb represents the small meager impotent meals that these pastors and ministers are deliberately serving. They are serving these small meals for one reason, and that is so that they can protect their positions as pastors by keeping their congregations dependent upon the pastors for what little spiritual food they receive. The Lord says that these pastors and ministers are to come to Him to get from Him what He wants these pastors and ministers to give out to the congregations."
This ends the interpretation of the vision. This vision was received by Jim Johnson.
As a side-bar, when a person serves a guest a meal in his home, he normally would use a large plate on which to serve and he would serve large portions of food as a demonstration of his generous hospitality.
When I first heard of this vision, my first thought was of the "pastor" who sat in a similarly exalted chair and supposedly "fed" me for so many years - a chair I now know to be stained deep red with the blood of many a victim of his "ministry." After deeper examination of this vision and deeper comparison of it with Scripture, I am even more convinced that this is truly a vision given by God.
Jesus said of the Pharisees:
"The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat. Therefore whatever they tell you to observe, that observe and do, but do not do according to their works; for they say, and do not do." ( Mt. 23:2-3; top )
Earlier, He had instructed His disciples regarding the Pharisees:
"Let them alone. They are blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind leads the blind, both will fall into a ditch." ( Mt. 15:14; top )
We need to have a similar attitude toward these modern day Pharisees who refuse to repent of their error and hypocrisy. We ought to do what they say, but we also ought to just leave them alone to lead their willfully blind followers into the ditch. Anyone who is truly hungering and thirsting after God's truth and righteousness will find Jesus Christ. ( Jn. 6:45 ) Anyone content to love, live and practice the "church" lies will be deceived ( 2 Ths. 2:9 ) and will ultimately receive their penalty in full. ( Rev. 22:15; top )
Simultaneously, we must pray that those leaders who rob their flock through sheer ignorance would have the eyes of their heart enlightened with wisdom and their will touched with God's grace so that they might repent and begin to correct their errors. But it will indeed take a strong and courageous man of God to stand in front of his congregation and tell them he has been spiritually cheating and robbing them for years. Some have done so and there is now a harvest of righteousness, peace and joy in their lives.
In the interpretation of this vision, the Lord affirms that these "pastors" and leaders indeed hold a place in God's house. In searching the New Testament to find out exactly what "the house of God" is, I found it very interesting that "house," just like "ekklesia," has nothing to do with a building. Instead it represents the people under the authority of a leader or nation (i.e., Cornelius, God and Israel for example). Other than three parallel references in the gospels ( Mt. 12:4 ; Mk. 2:26 ; Lk. 6:4 which actually refers to the tabernacle when it was in a place called Nob and David ate the showbread there), "the house of God" is always a reference to the assembly. ( 1 Pet. 2:5 ; 4:17 ; Heb. 10:21 ; 11:7 ; 1 Tim. 3:5 , 15; top )
What a sobering thought - that these "pastors" and leaders have authority in the body of Christ, but instead of utilizing it to build up God's kingdom, they use their place to rob, cheat and defraud their brothers and sisters. God has promised stern judgment upon those servants of His whom, upon His return, are found to be abusing their fellow servants. ( Mt. 24:49-51; top ) May God be merciful and grant them the grace to repent - now.
This vision ends with the statement that "these pastors and ministers are to come to Him to get from Him what He wants these pastors and ministers to give out to the congregations." In closing my response, I would like to ask us to turn to God's Word for some answers to the question, "Just what might the Lord want those 'pastors and ministers' to give out to the congregation?"
I would like to put forward four things as being highest on God's list of priorities.
1) A Good Example. ( Mt. 20:27 ; 1Tim. 3:1-13 ; 2 Tim. 3:10-14; top , etc.) Unless the flock sees an example of what it means to live a godly life, they will never learn to live a godly life. If all the "pastor" can do is present a false aura of knowledge and infallibility from behind his podium but can't muster up the least bit of godliness or love when dealing with people as individuals, he should simply resign. Let someone who has real godliness step in and dismantle the abomination this false shepherd has erected in his own name.
2) The Truth. ( Jn. 4:23 ; 8:32 ) The truth is, if you've truly been born again from above, you don't need to be taught the truth - God has already written His truth in your hearts. ( Heb. 8:10-11 ) The truth is, you don't need a teacher nearly so much as you need to know how to hear and obey the Holy Spirit for yourself. ( 1 Jn. 2:27; top ) These simple truths, shared and exemplified to a hungry body of believers would ignite a fire in this world - a fire this world desperately needs. These truths will set God's people free to follow Him wherever He might lead - and no mere man will be able to stop these people from serving and loving their God.
3) The Steps to Maturity. ( 2 Pet. 2:5-7 ; Eph. 4:11-16; top ) There is no more room in the body of Christ for a one-man show. We need everything God has given to His body to make her ready for His return - we need God's apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds, and teachers. Those shepherds and teachers who have abandoned whatever place of responsibility and authority God gave them need to step down now or be abandoned by all those who truly name the name of Jesus Christ. We cannot follow after men who have a master other than the Lord Jesus Christ.
4) Obedience, obedience, obedience. ( Rom. 8:9 ; 1 Jn. 2:3-4 ; 5:4; top ) To cause those who listen to be more obedient requires more than their being told the truth. They must see the fruit of an obedient life. They must see clearly demonstrated what it means to listen and to hear the Holy Spirit for themselves - if they cannot hear Him, how can they possibly know what He is saying to His assembly.
He who has ears to hear, let him hear what the Spirit is saying to His body. The rest can just keep going to "church" to be deceived by their favorite "Christian" guru and to be enslaved in weak passivity and spiritual impotence.
I'd love to hear comments and/or questions from you! Email me!