David’s Tabernacle Restored, Part 3
November 9, 2018
In the previous two weeks discussion on David’s Tabernacle, we laid out the history of Judah and Israel during the times of the kings who followed the pattern established by David with the three families of Asaph, Heman and Jeduthun and the 24 hours of praise and worship that went forth around the tabernacle.
In the artistic rendering to the right,
you see the tabernacle of Moses.
That tabernacle was a prophecy to
Israel of God’s desire to restore
the personal relationship with
Israel that He once had with
Adam and Eve.
II Samuel 6 recounts the events that
took place in his first and anxious
attempt to bring the Ark back to
Jerusalem. The Ark was intended to
be borne by priests — not carried
about on a cart drawn by oxen like a
piece of furniture. That boo-boo
caused the death of Uzzah, and David had to reconsider the pattern that God had set forth for the Ark in the first place.
David had realized that Israel had missed the significance of Moses’ Tabernacle and his objective was to restore the vision of the marriage covenant between God and His people. That meant that the Ark had to be on display before the nation — not hidden behind a thick veil so that it was visible only to the High Priest when he went into the Holy of Holies once a year.
So David pitched a simple tent over the Ark. He placed it on a high point where it could be easily seen by anyone and everyone who looked in its direction. Instead of the symbolism of the Golden Candlestick with its seven branches and the continuous burning flames representing the Seven Spirits of God manifested in a completed and worshiping people which came out of each branch, he appointed the three families of Asaph, Heman and Jeduthun to minister before the Tabernacle of David and the Ark in rotating shifts on a 24-hour basis, seven days a week.
We’ve already talked about the things that took place in Israel with that worship going forth continuously. We’ve talked about the fact that Israel never lost a battle with any of its enemies during the 40 years that David sat on the throne and the 40 years that Solomon ruled. We’ve talked about the fact that Israel’s former enemies sued for peace treaties, and how David and Solomon expanded the borders of Israel taking lands and territories that had been promised to Abraham but never taken under Joshua’s leadership.
We’ve talked about the fact that the land began to produce agriculturally. The desert blossomed like a rose. The people prospered as they had never prospered.
During Solomon’s reign, Israel became THE NUMBER ONE nation in the world — the Zenith of power and prestige! The presence of the Lord filled the land as never before.
I won’t recount today the history of the fall and rise again of Israel under the kings who succeeded David and Solomon. Suffice it to say that When Rehoboam succeeded his father, Solomon, within roughly three years he abandoned the ministry of praise and worship and sent the families of Asaph, Heman and Jeduthun packing.
No sooner had he done so when Jeroboam came up out of Egypt and split the nation in half. Judah and Benjamin remained together under the leadership of the kings who were part of David’s lineage. The remaining ten tribes fell under the leadership first of Jeroboam, and then under a succession of kings — none of whom restored the ministry of praise and worship — until they were all carried away into captivity.
After Rehoboam’s folly Judah was beset by war and pestilence. In the hundreds of years that followed, only four kings in David’s lineage restored the ministry of praise and worship. Each time they did so, the nation had continual victory over its enemies and prosperity returned to the land as it had under David and Solomon.
It has always been a source of amazement to me that the descendants of Asaph, Heman and Jeduthun always remained faithful to their anointing and calling. Each time a king called for the restoration of praise and worship, they were ready. They were ready to prophesy. They were ready to praise, and they were ready to worship.
For centuries and millennia, this picture was lost on the body of Christ. We’ve gone through the Reformation and many successive stages of restoration and moves of God throughout the past five centuries. A new generation of people began to awaken to praise during the Azusa Street Revival. Occasionally, throughout the past two hundred years, there have been songs written that were oriented to worship, but it really was not until the Charismatic Renewal began to really take shape in the early 1970’s that we began to see the makings of real worship.
Nevertheless, the concept of 24-hours of praise and worship, seven days a week, and its potential impact over the nation had not yet emerged. It was in 1973 while I was at Long Beach Christian Center that Holy Spirit began to unfold for me an understanding of David’s Tabernacle and the potential impact that kind of ministry could make on the United States as a nation.
At the same time, the Lord began to pour real worship into me and give me Scripture songs, such as Revelation 5:12 (Worthy is the Lamb) and Revelation 5:13 (Blessing and Honor and Glory and Power). The concept of singing in the Spirit was still in its infancy in the body of Christ where everyone sang mostly using a single chord.
It was in 1982 while leading the House of Praise in Fairbanks (a fellowship consisting mostly of folks who were part of the ministry of CBN-Alaska) that we began to launch out into singing complete new songs in the Spirit. What began to develop was a sense of the presence of the Lord so thick in our gathering that folks simply could not move. There were extended moments of total silence as people began to simply soak in the presence of the Lord.
(This is an aside to this discussion, but our gatherings were in the round where everyone sat in a growing circle. Those of us who were leading formed part of the circle. When I got up to do the teaching, I stood in the center of the circle.)
I remember a Sunday where we were experiencing the presence of the Lord like that and a six or seven-year old girl left her mother’s side and laid down on the floor in the middle of the room. Her mother was horrified and tried to stop her. She wouldn’t be stopped and curled up on the floor right in the middle. When the worship finally subsided, the mother went to retrieve the girl. “Why did you do that?” she asked the girl. “Momma, Jesus was standing right there! Didn’t you see Him? I went and laid down at His feet.”
Because these experiences were increasing, and the length of our worship gatherings expanding, I began to think that the vision for a modern-day Tabernacle of David was developing, and that it was going to spring up with that ministry in Fairbanks. My spirit really began to pose the question to the Lord, “Is it time? Is this the time and place where You will cause this to become a modern reality?”
Not long thereafter, a young black woman on vacation from South Carolina came knocking on my door at the CBN offices. She walked in, barely introduced herself and set a gift-wrapped package on my desk. She turned with hardly a word and headed for the office door. Before exiting, she said, “Write the vision! Make it plain!” She closed the door and I never saw or heard from her again.
I opened the gift-wrapped package. In it was a Coffee Cup with the inscription from Habakkuk 2:3, “For the Vision is yet for an appointed time.” (Now you know where the theme of these weekly columns comes from – grin!)
The answer to my question couldn’t have been clearer. I had no clue as to the events that were going to unfold in the days following but before summer began, we were disconnected from CBN, people had scattered to the four winds and the doors of the fellowship were closed.
Five years pass. Della and I are now in Anchorage. For the past few years, I’ve been in international banking. We’d been on a project that was generating millions of dollars in commissions, and we were approaching a day when those commissions would be released. Della and I had chosen a piece of property along the Seward Highway to build a worship center.
We’d been negotiating with the principals for the purchase of the Girdwood Gold Mine, knowing that the mine was generating a couple million each year in revenue — revenue that could be used to fund the ongoing ministry of the worship center and pay the salaries of those who dedicated themselves to the 24-hour praise and worship.
We’d also negotiated for the purchase of a home to meet the needs of our growing family. Everything is set to go. We meet with the realtors at Home Savings and Loan to close the purchases at the exact time that our commissions are due to be released to us.
Nothing happens. The trustee for our funds has fled the country with all of our money. Talk about having the wind go out of your sails! The trustee was tracked to a point where the Feds lost sight of him, our moneys unrecoverable. In the months that ensued, when my spirit was quiet enough to hear Holy Spirit, the Lord said to me, “I don’t need you to fund my vision. When the time comes, you will have more than enough to accomplish everything I tell you to do.”
Wheww! Got it?
Two more years pass. Della is managing for Zales Jewelers and I am Chief Engineer for the relatively new FOX television station. Friends are gathering with us in our home for praise and worship on Sundays. I’m like David! I’ve gotten frustrated over the delays and am anxious to see the non-stop ministry of praise and worship get going.
Without telling Della, I put an ad in the Anchorage Daily News looking for people with a heart and vision for praise and worship. People start calling me, inquiring as to what this is all about, and I start interviewing prospective musicians and singers on the telephone.
One day, Della calls me from her office. My secretary puts her on hold while I finish an interview with a prospective worshiper. When I take Della’s call off hold and apologize for the delay, she naturally asks me what I was doing. When I told her that I was interviewing a prospective musician and singer, I had to tell her that it was based on an ad I’d put in the newspaper.
You could have heard her laughter a mile away. “You’re doing WHAT? You’re interviewing for GOD?”
OOPS!! It dawned on me that I was doing almost the same thing that David had done. My anxiety was getting in the way. I had to admit my stupidity. The interviews ceased. Not surprisingly, out of dozens of phone calls and interviews that had taken place, not one single person I’d talked to was interested. They all thought this was going to be a chance at television and fame. There was no heart of worship in any of them.
Now it is the fall of 1992. The Lord begins to speak to Della and me. “Simplify.” “Get out of debt.” “Consolidate.” Become mobile.”
Human nature never changes. You tend to “interpret” what God says to you through your own mental translator. And so we did. “Simplify” and “Consolidate” just meant we were to downsize from our six-bedroom home (most of the kids were grown and gone — Joshua and Rebekah were the only ones still there). So we found a four-bedroom home north of Anchorage that seemed like a good fit. We didn’t have the money yet to purchase it, but it looked like we could make things happen.
We started packing and selling things, and I started moving things we “needed to keep” into storage. Not counting car payments and insurance payments, we were roughly $17,000 in debt, despite having been on what was easily a six-figure income. In short order we were suddenly car-less. A drunk driver hit us head-on. No one was injured but the car was a total loss. Earle and Marcia Treend had been part of our daily practice of gathering for praise and worship under humorous circumstances. Earle was heading up Tad Telecommunications and Marcia was working for an airline that ultimately merged with Southwest Airlines.
You can appreciate that we epitomized “busy!” I was on call 24 hours a day, Della was putting in a good 12-hour day (or more at Zales, Earle was doing pretty much the same thing with his telecommunications company, and Marcia was working long hours for the airline. We determined that we were going to get together for worship on a daily basis, even if that meant only 15, 20 or 30 minutes per day.
We agreed to meet around noon each day at our home which seemed to be the most centrally located in the city, considering where all of our respective offices were situated. It got to be somewhat humorous.
We would all arrive at the house within roughly five minutes of each other, drop our coats, grab hands and begin to sing in the Spirit. For roughly 15 or 20 minutes, this continued nonstop. Then we’d grab our coats and head out the door to our respective offices.
Over the weeks that followed (once we began this practice) we found that our time was being better spent, that our labors were more efficient, and we could get together for longer periods of time. We didn’t bother with our instruments at first.
Just getting together was our priority. There was a mandate in our spirits to meet daily for worship. It mattered not if we could only grab a few minutes, or if it worked for us to be together for an hour or more. We had a focus on ministry to the Lord.
In case you are missing out on real fellowship in an environment of Ekklesia, our Sunday worship gatherings are available by conference call – usually at about 10:45AM Pacific. That conference number is (712) 770-4160, and the access code is 308640#. We are now making these gatherings available by Skype. If you wish to participate by video on Skype, my Skype ID is regner.capener. If you miss the live voice call, you can dial (712) 770-4169, enter the same access code and listen in later. The video call, of course, is not recorded – not yet, anyway.
Blessings on you!
RIVER WORSHIP CENTER
Temple, Texas 76504
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