Report From The Tower
I was meditating today, in the Lord, about some words, spoken forty years gone by, of wise men, who would never know, as the author sarcastically penned it, how it feels, to be thick as a brick. Or, to put it in another way not half so facetious, how terrible it would be if men who thought they were wise were really as thick headed as a brick.
“I may make you feel, but I can’t make you think”, said the poet.
Sometimes, I would like to believe that I can make you feel, or maybe, with the help of God, I might even be able to make you think, but today, I would be overjoyed if I could just detect a pulse from the wreckage I am viewing of the thing that calls itself the Church of Jesus Christ. Oh that Jesus would breathe on this headless corpse and revive us!
The wisest of the body of Christ are, inarguably, those who hear His voice the clearest and do what He says. Who could argue with that? I stopped for a minute, and then I answered, “well Ezekiel might argue with that”, as He did in Ezekiel 14.
4 Therefore speak unto them, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Every man of the house of Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to the prophet; I the LORD will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols;
If you have an idol in your, God is OBLIGATED TO DECEIVE YOU!
And so, today, I also pondered on the words of Psalm 133:
1 A Song of degrees of David. Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!
2 It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments;
3 As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the blessing, even life for evermore.
From that verse, we should be able to easily figure out that when we are able to walk in unity, under God, that God has commanded a blessing to come upon us collectively. Contrariwise, when that unity is blown to smithereens by anything at all, it happened because God withdrew His blessing, and the judgement of God is clearly breaking forth upon those of us who belong to Him.
Then, the Holy Spirit brought this verse before me, from 1 Peter 4:17
17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?
So, I had to admit, that as far as it concerns me, and the human wreckage that I am looking at all around me, the wrath of God has been poured on His Church, for certain, during the last two years. Is there any unity left? Perhaps some unity remains in the places where the people are enamored with jerking, twitching and false signs and wonders. But that too will end in disarray and wreckage. The end result of service to or collaboration with any work of Satan is always destruction.
Then I thought about how neatly it parallels the life journey of my brother Matthew Stephen, who had been sent to the wilderness by God in 2001 for seven years, where he was not permitted to speak or write publicly at all.
Then suddenly, in January, 2008, Matthew was sent forth by God, with a staff to strike the Earth, and to call forth the judgements of God upon an unrepentant people. Matthew is a man of like passions; a man like me; a man like you and a man like Elijah. He is just a man, but he came forth with a commission from God. Like me, he still needs faith in the blood of Jesus Christ to justify him before the Father.
Two years ago, God sent forth prophet Matthew, and the winds of judgement began to blow like an unimaginably mighty hurricane upon the church. Todd Bentley and the “outpouring” came forth later in 2008 as an “east wind” that blew upon the house of God and began to tear it down. God was in that wind. God was at Lakeland. God was there, pouring judgement and wrath upon His people. Yes, it has taken two years for all of the unity in “the hearing church” to vanish.
Now, back to today, I then had a vision: an imagination; a thought in picture running through my mind.
I walked into a large Super Wal-Mart. I suddenly realized that all of these men were shopping in this Super Wal-Mart, and ONLY THESE MEN WERE THERE:
WILES, KELTNER, NEUMANN, EELS, XAVIER, MEEKS, COOK, MCKEE, BOLDEA, STEPHEN and PUYOL.
So, as I entered the Super Wal-Mart, there were now TWELVE of us, walking around in the same Super Wal-Mart, at the same time. The vision ended.
I then began to wonder if any of us or them could walk together? How many of them would I avoid, running the other way when I met one at the opposite end of an aisle or just around the next turn? How many could still come together and agree? Who would I see gathered together and talking when I rounded the next bend?
At one time, I walked with all of them. Now, only one of them walks with me.
I supposed that I would be walking around that Wal-Mart with that one that I still agreed with, and a few of them might be walking around together too, if they still had some agreement with any of the others. Some might find the experience all too frightening and might go to hide in the men’s room.
Now, each of these men has claimed to clearly hear the voice of Jesus Christ. I would attest that I believed, at one time, that each man could clearly hear from God. Each of us has preached the gospel. Each of us has been in public ministry. Some of them do not know each other, but I know each one pretty well. Each of these men thinks they have done what is right in the respective positions they have taken. They have separated from me. I have withdrawn from ten of them. Can we all be right?
Not a chance!
So next, I thought about a list of idols that might still be in the hearts of each of these men, or God forbid, even me. Idols, Ezekiel told us, would cause the Lord to, in effect, lie to us. God would send a lying spirit to us, and talk to us in such a way that we would be given over to a strong delusion, and believe the lie. I’ll list some idols and other things that I have discerned to be at work in my own life, at different times, over the years. They are very subtle and sneaky. These things have tried to have rule over me at various and sundry times. I have had to cast some of them down, repeatedly. I’ll also list some others that I have seen at work in the lives of others.
Could any of these men have gotten into trouble when God poured out His judgement upon His house during the last two years? Did God turn them over to believe a lie because of any of these things:
1) love of this present world; 2) lust for women; 3) lust for big time ministry; 4) chasing money more than chasing God; 5) lust for self importance; 6) lust for acceptance; 7) lust for a part of the big show and the platform.
How about some deeply hidden yet wicked conditions of the heart: 1) inordinate desire for a godly wife; 2) desire to be chief; 3) desire to be the greatest; 4) jealousy when God blesses a brother while we still suffer; 5) desire for the pulpit; 6) desire to be recognized as a teacher; 7) desire for fame; 8) desire for taking any personal credit for things done by God’s glory and power.
How about some character flaws that are well hidden, but might not totally dealt with: 1) defilement through pornography; 2) fear of losing the wife if I obey God fully; 3) believing that the end justifies the means; 4) self pity; 5) anger and unforgiveness toward God; 6) unforgiveness towards men; 7) greed; 8) compromise; 9) dishonesty 10) uncleanness in the thoughts and in the heart; 11) unclean speech; 12) bitterness.
There are probably a lot more, but you get the idea. These are the big ones, and most of them center around the three G’s: Girls, Gold and Glory.
So, the question to be asked is: WHO HAS THE IDOL? Who is deceived and who has the truth?
I cannot imagine any greater wrath happening in the body of Christ. To believe that God is leading us, but to later find out that I or any of us have been given over by God to believe a lie, is something that should cause each and every one of us to tremble before God. It should cause ALL TWELVE MEN TO TREMBLE!
Yet, this is WHAT MUST HAVE ALREADY HAPPENED!
It appears to me that the judgement in the House of God is almost complete. The complete outpouring of the curse will wreak total desolation among our youth if God does not arise to check it. And if God has nearly completed His work among His people, what will now become of the wicked sinners of this present world?
Repent now, while you still can; if you still can; and turn back to Jesus Christ for a spirit of refreshing from the Lord. To the rest, as the Lord has said through Isaiah the prophet, in chapter 26, verse 20 Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast.
Stephen L. Bening
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