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In the old temple in Jerusalem the feast of Tabernacles was celebrated for seven days with a ceremony where the priest poured a pitcher of water taken from the Pool of Siloam. It was poured into the tube on the right side of the altar, while the wine was poured into the left side.
The bowls of wine are pictured in Revelation 16. They are poured out in the time of the seventh trumpet, which is the seventh month on the Hebrew calendar. (They used to blow a trumpet at the sighting of each new moon that signaled the beginning of each month.) The book of Revelation tells us that these bowls of wine are prophetic of the divine judgment upon Mystery Babylon, the great harlot, the counterfeit bride, which is also the Old Jerusalem.
Revelation 16 says nothing about the seven bowls (or pitchers) of water that were poured out at Tabernacles each year. And so I was just a little surprised when the Word of the Lord came in the year 2000, instructing me to pour out a bowl of water with my right hand, while pouring out a bowl of wine with my left hand. This water was to signify the outpouring of the Spirit that would occur at the same time as the judgment upon Babylon.
When Jesus kept the feast of Tabernacles in John 7, He did something interesting on the eighth day of Tabernacles. It was the last great day of the feast, when no water was poured out. On that day, Jesus shouted out, "If any man thirst, let him come to Me and drink. He that believes on Me, as the Scripture has said, 'out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water'." (John 7:37, 38).
John then explains that this indicated the outpouring of the Spirit, which at that time, had not yet been given. Our thoughts immediately turn to the day of Pentecost in Acts 2, and certainly this prophecy is applicable to that time. Pentecost was a marvelous day, but in the afterglow of Pentecost, Paul came to the conclusion that it was only an "earnest" of the Spirit and not the fulness. See 2 Cor. 5:5 and Eph. 1:14.
For this reason, Jesus' words must have a second and greater fulfillment. Furthermore, I believe that His words will be fulfilled on the last day of Tabernacles of some year. I have noticed, not only in Scripture but also by personal experience, that the date of a revelation usually has something to do with its fulfillment. Many, many times I have seen His Word fulfilled on the same date as it was given, only in a later year.
So the fact that Jesus spoke of this outpouring of the Spirit on the eighth day of Tabernacles indicates to me that this was not a mere Pentecostal prophecy. It is what we can expect to see fulfilled on the eighth day of Tabernacles.
It would be nice to tell you that it will happen this year. We do have indications that the Holy Spirit is going to do something this year at Tabernacles. But I have no revelation that John 7:37, 38 is going to be fulfilled this year. Nonetheless, I think it is likely that we will see something that will empower (or begin to empower) God's people to do a new and greater work of ministry than we have seen up to now.
Yet I do not want to raise your expectations too high, lest you be disappointed with what He does. We should never be disappointed with what God does, for He does all things at the proper times. It is best simply to go to Him and drink, if you are thirsty. You do your part, and let God do His.
Having said that, we have waited for this time (2006-2007) since the year 2000 when we first came to view this seven-year period as a complete cycle in itself. One thing seems clear: these two events symbolized by the water and the wine are linked together. When Babylon begins to fall, we will not be taken out where it is "safe." We will have a job to do, for we are to be sent out as Christ's representatives to minister to those who are frightened and devastated by the collapse of Babylon. The Holy Spirit will not be removed from the earth, as many have taught. Rather, the Holy Spirit will be poured out in greater measure.
The purpose of Pentecost was to empower the disciples to go into the whole world and preach the gospel. The purpose of Tabernacles is not to give Jesus' disciples the power to escape to heaven, but to empower them to finish that work of world evangelism. Did you not think it strange when you were told that we would be taken out of the earth just when we finally receive the power to do something about all these problems down here?
Back in March of 2001 the Lord led us to hold a prayer campaign with a very long name: "He is Building Effective Apostleship." The word "apostle" simply means one who is sent. Its usage in the New Testament gives the word greater meaning, of course, but at its core, it has to do with common people doing uncommon things as the result of their being with Jesus and knowing Him.
I know many people who have been trained quite severely. You can see such patterns in Moses, Joseph, David, and the New Testament apostles as well. The prosperity doctrine was unknown to them, for God was more interested in their character than in their wealth and personal comfort. We have been getting indications that for many such people today, the time of hard training may be ending soon. In my view, it will likely end as the Spirit is poured out, because this is the point where training ends and ministry begins.
And yet, this does not mean that all troubles will be over. Keep in mind the Two Witnesses of Revelation 11, who move in great power and yet are still said to be killed. I do not think that the Two Witnesses are necessary two individual people--unless perhaps they are the leaders of two bodies of people who have Moses/Elijah callings.
My point is that there is much work to be done, and it will not be easy. There will continue to be opposition. The difference is that the Holy Spirit gives us the power to overcome all opposition, and if it looks like anyone is overcome, it is only because God has some purpose in this.
I wrote some months ago that Noah died 2006 years from Adam (in biblical chronology). We have dubbed this current year "The Year of Noah" for this reason. This has some negative implications insofar as the morals of the people are concerned, but it also has positive implications. Genesis 6:17 said that the flood in Noah's day removed the "breath of life" (ruach, "spirit") from all flesh.
But there is a second flood coming, for the Spirit of the Lord will cover the earth as the waters cover the sea. This new flood will put the Spirit back into all flesh, reversing the effects of Noah's flood. Thus, "as in the days of Noah" is not all bad, because the covenant in Genesis 9 makes it positive.
Anyway, there seems to be a connection between this outpouring of the Holy Spirit and the year 2006. The precise connection remains to be seen. So many things begin and then develop in time, so we will have to be patient and watchful. Whatever God does will be perfect, even if it is not quick enough for me and my carnal mind.
Meanwhile, the seventh bowl of wine poured out on October 7 this year will be accompanied by the seventh bowl of water as well. This water has already been drawn from the Mississippi River, called on old Spanish maps, "the River of the Holy Spirit." The water was drawn at a place called "The Islands of Peace," located in Fridley, MN. This was also where the third bowls of water and wine were poured out at Tabernacles of 2002.
Later, I will probably relate more of those details and how they fit into the present revelation and work. But this is sufficient for now.