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“Anava has returned to do Your will,” I said slowly and deliberately, as I approached the soft glow of light from the crack in the mountain. “Your will is my delight, because Your law has been written on my heart.”
“Do you now understand the calling?” the Voice asked.
“Yes, I have heard the revelation, and Joshua has told me what to do with it.” I replied.
“Do you know your heart? Are you in agreement with My plan and My ways?”
“I am,” I said without hesitation.
The soft glow from the crack again whirled and gathered into a thin, small spear of light, resembling a bright nail. It hovered nearby for a brief moment and then thrust itself at me, piercing my right earlobe. 87 Before I could recover from my surprise, it spoke into my ear, saying, “Do not fear. I am Vav; I am here to open your ear and to unite you to the Creator. Henceforth the light from the crack will be in your ear to guide you and instruct you in the way in which you shall go.”
The Vav then melted away, returning to its original state as a soft, misty glow. Then I heard the Voice of the Creator speak softly in my ear, “Build Me a kingdom according to the pattern which I have shown you.” 88
“Yes, Master. But where shall I build? Where will I find the resources necessary for such a work?” I asked.
“Seek first My kingdom, and all these things will come to you at the proper time. Remember always that this is My work and that I am faithful to compensate all labor that I have authorized. Do as you see Me do with justice and mercy. Above all, teach all truth with love. 89 Always keep in mind who you are, Anava, and walk in that garment. Though many will oppose your work, you cannot fail, because I have decreed its success.”
“Your will is my will,” I responded.
The glow subsided, as if to return deep into the unknown passages of the mountain, and I knew that this encounter had ended. The divine earphone, however, gave me a sense of His presence, and I knew that I would never again experience the feeling of aloneness or separation or even of real danger. Just knowing that He was with me and would direct all my paths and knew all my circumstances and difficulties reassured me that all adversity was but a stepping stone toward His goal and that He would provide a way through every valley of the shadow of death.
As I walked slowly out of the cave, squinting at the bright sunlight, the cave closed up behind me, and the gaping hole was replaced by craggy rocks and tufts of grass, as if it had never existed. I felt a momentary regret, as one feels when waking out of a wonderful dream. But now I carried the light with me, for the Vav had implanted His presence permanently in my ear. There was now no turning back. Nothing would ever be the same again, but the new path that lay ahead was brighter and surer than any that I had known in the past.
As I followed the trail back to the lodge, my thoughts returned to Joshua and the things he told me while returning to the earth from our rainbow revelation. The first crack of the violet dawn of an age had arrived, along with a brighter future, not only for us but for the whole earth. We were part of a vast plan to implement the Creator’s purpose. While He might have done it all Himself by the power of His word alone, He had chosen to work through agents who would embody His word.
The same irresistible, creative power that sent forth His word at the beginning of time was in those agents, forged in fire, tried in the crucible of wilderness experience, and matured by understanding. They were as living words, united fragments of a single Word, speaking in earth as it is in heaven, in order to reconcile all things and unite both worlds as one. 90
Joshua had told me during our descent from on high that he owned not only the balloon business but also the entire valley through which the river from Revelation Mountain flowed. Or rather, he said, it was owned technically by The Creator’s Trust. “I am just the manager of this Trust,” Joshua had explained. “Joseph is the chief steward.”
I resolved to talk with both Joshua and Joseph further about this, because I was told that the kingdom had already been established by this Trust. The manager and steward knew more than they had revealed. My heart was drawn to work with them to develop the kingdom.
It was close to noonday when I finally returned to the lodge. I found Joseph—or rather, he found me, for as soon as I walked through the door, he called to me from across the room, waving his arm to attract my attention. “Anava!” he shouted. “It’s good to see you. Come, we need to talk.”
“How are you today, my friend?” I responded.
“I am doing exceptionally well,” he said cheerily.
Having dispensed with our greetings, he motioned a receptionist to bring us coffee, and then ushered me into a small conference room having comfortable chairs positioned around a cozy fireplace. As we sipped the aromatic coffee, I recounted to him the morning’s encounter with the light from the crack and how that light had pierced my ear.
Joseph nodded knowingly. “I had the same experience some time ago,” he revealed for the first time. “My instructions, however, were to wait for the appointed time. Long have I waited for this day, for I could not do much until others had come forth to do their part. But now the time has come to build a kingdom for the Creator.”
He paused, took another sip from his cup, and then continued. “Kingdoms have been built in days gone by, but they have all failed, for past stewards exceeded their boundaries and usurped it for their own use.”
“Why would they do such a thing?” I mused. “Disobedience is a form of madness, don’t you think?”
“They were not blessed with the Vav,” he explained. “Without hearing the perpetual Voice of the light, they remained mere servants without understanding, and often they acted as if the Creator Himself served them. As servants, they failed to follow the commands of the Creator, for they had eaten of the tree of knowledge. They thought that they had more wisdom than the Creator Himself and presumed to advise Him about how His kingdom ought to be managed.”
His pained countenance then brightened. “We may put all of that aside now,” he said with a hint of excitement, “because things have now changed. We are not mere servants of the Creator, but friends, for He has revealed His secrets to us. 91 Because we returned, we were made perpetual bondservants, true friends, having hearts in agreement with Him. Because we delight to do His will, He has entrusted us with the deep concerns of His heart. This is why the Vav has opened our ears.” 92
“Yes,” I said fervently, “and that is our guarantee of success. I do understand. We now may eat of the tree of life, while having all the benefits of the tree of knowledge as well. When life takes precedence over knowledge, that is true wisdom. This truth has eluded men for many ages. Yet now the time has come to build a kingdom upon that wisdom.”
At that moment, the door swung open, and Joshua entered the room, holding a cup of steaming coffee in his hand. (Joshua likes coffee; I know, because I like coffee, and we are in agreement.) “Joseph, my old friend!” he proclaimed loudly. “Anava, my new friend! I have come because the still, small Voice in my ear told me we needed to confer about kingdom matters.”
“We do indeed,” Joseph answered. “Anava has just returned from the cave, where the Creator made him one of our company. He tells me that the time has come to build the true kingdom. It appears that the age of darkness and failure has ended. It is now certain that no flesh can claim success, nor can men glory in their own ability. We may now proceed with humility,” he said, looking at me and raising his cup of coffee as if to toast me.
Joshua too looked at me and added, “That is good news,” he said, raising his cup. “The fog dissipates. The veil is torn. The illusion of men’s ability is shattered. Pride is humbled, humility exalted. The Age of the New Covenant is upon us. There is much work to be done.”
He continued, “The second rainbow yesterday provided us with the final revelation needed to build successfully. All prior kingdoms were built by the commands of the lower rainbow, which men failed to obey, although they had agreed to its terms of stewardship. Our kingdom, however, is to be built by the promises of the upper rainbow, and the Creator has taken personal responsibility upon Himself to make this happen. We cannot fail.”
Speaking up for the first time since Joshua had arrived, I said matter-of-factly, “It appears, then, that I am a sign of change from the pride and ability of men to the humility of men and the ability of the Creator.”
“You are indeed,” Joshua said with all seriousness. “We have waited patiently with the Creator Himself for this moment of truth. It is the truth of grace and its less-known power of forgiveness. Because grace is so gentle, few comprehend its power to overcome all opposition.”
With sudden insight, I looked at Joshua and smiled broadly. “That is your other name, is it not? I am certain that I just now heard this in my ear. Joshua-Grace! The Creator has a sense of humor!”
“Indeed, He does,” Joshua said with a hearty laugh. “My earthly name is Joshua, but my New Creation Man was given the name of a woman. It is written in the laws of the Creator that some sacrifices were male and others female. 93 I am at once both a male lamb 94 and a female heifer. 95 I represent all of those prophetic sacrifices, and so in different ways I unite both male and female principles in marriage as one body.”
“In the earth,” he continued, “we can be either male or female, but not both. Such are the limitations of earthly expressions. But in the spirit there is neither male nor female as we know it, 96 for it is a higher realm and the laws apply differently. Even so, my spirit is known as Grace. It is mother of all living, 97 and all must be birthed by this woman in order to have life.”
And so it was, that three witnesses, each bearing the image of the Creator in different ways, set forth to build a kingdom. Joshua and Joseph bore witness, and Anava set the timing as the third witness to clarify all that the first two had done. All things in heaven and in earth are established by at least two witnesses, even as the law and the prophets bear witness to the word. 98
But a third is also important. Humility comes from stark awareness of one’s failure, and then it steps forward as the great Timekeeper. As a psalm of praise, humility puts the words of the first two witnesses to music, having meter and beat, that all might enjoy and more easily remember the revelation.
“How does one build a kingdom?” I asked Joshua and Joseph.
“Well, we must look at the present situation and build from there,” Joseph replied. “Few of the people in Newkirk have ventured into Revelation Mountain, because they are afraid of it.” 99
“But what is there to fear?” I asked. “From my experience, there is everything to gain and nothing to fear.”
This time Joshua spoke up. “There are legends from the past that the mountain smoked and quaked with fire. It is said that those who climbed the mountain heard voices in the wind, and they returned with tales that the mountain is haunted. Others believe that it is the dwelling place of a fearsome god that has forbidden them to tread upon his territory.”
“These old legends,” added Joseph, “have brought fear to the hearts of the people. They view with suspicion anyone who has been to the mountain and who has lived to tell his story. Those who have returned from the mountain tried to share the revelation from the Voice, but most of them were killed.”
“But why?” I asked. “Do they not want to hear what the Voice has to say?”
“They claim to know already,” Joshua explained, “or to know all that is important. In ancient times their forefathers received books written by those who heard the Voice. The problem is that few now understand the old tongue, and much that should have been remembered is now lost. The elders of each generation have interpreted the books in ways that seemed plausible to them, and over time their interpretations were fixed by long usage.”
“Then why would they kill those who came from the mountain with fresh revelation?” I persisted. “Would they not be glad to know how to alter their traditions and come more fully into agreement with the Voice?”
Joseph smiled sadly. “You are not like most men,” he said. “You were unfamiliar with this area and had not heard that you were supposed to be afraid of the mountain.” Pointing to my heart, he said, “When you heard the Voice, you did not presume to know more than He. Your understanding was not already set in the ways of long tradition. Most of the people in Newkirk deeply respect the Town Council and believe that because they are wise and educated, their traditions are the truth. There is little room for revelation in such an atmosphere, especially when it contradicts long-established tradition from the revered elders of past generations.”
“Then the root of the problem is pride,” I concluded. “It springs from the desire to be faithful to the books, but it rejects the Voice and presumes to know. Lacking the ability to discern, most of the elders cannot distinguish the word in the books from their understanding of the word. They assume, then, that any new understanding violates the word itself. Is that correct?”
“Yes,” Joshua answered. “Whatever truth has reached the level of long-held tradition cannot be questioned or upgraded. Such traditions are like clay pots which can no longer be shaped without breaking them apart. The traditions which they believe to be firm and established are actually as dead as a stone statue which cannot change or grow. Their understanding can no longer develop to greater levels without being perceived as a personal threat to the elders. Their reputation is at stake, and their pride as well.”
“I think now I am beginning to understand the word from the Voice that I heard in the mountain. He said to me, ‘Count the cost.’ He also spoke of evil times in the past when men were not able to hear the revelation being given to them. I remember what He told me: ‘I am looking for those who will take My light to the world.’ Yet He also said, ‘In times past I sent men to deliver messages that only few could hear.’ I did not fully appreciate the danger of this calling.”
“Many have died,” Joseph said somberly. “The good news from the mountain threatens to upset the present world order. As long as few believe the message, there is little danger, but with greater success comes greater danger.”
“You must understand,” Joshua interjected, “that this is more than about truth upsetting tradition. Truth has the power to set men free from those who occupy seats of authority and who rule oppressively by their traditional understanding of the ancient law books. The pride of present rulers refuses to submit to new truth, not only because it contradicts tradition, but because it undermines their authority and reputation.”
“I do not understand such thinking,” I said, shaking my head slowly. “Truth should always be welcome. It seems to me that wise leaders ought to be the first to rejoice when veils are lifted and when darkness is eradicated by the light. In darkness our movements are limited, for no man can run in the dark without stumbling. Light gives us freedom to run like the wind.”
Both Joseph and Joshua laughed with delight. “Yes, Anava,” they agreed, “that is true. But you are not like most men. A tiny seed of humility was implanted in you from the beginning, and when this grew finally into an adult tree, the Voice drew you to the mountain. Something in you resonated at the sound of the Voice. Something in you had the ability to hear and the maturity to accept the calling. Now you are called to produce seed-bearing fruit for the next generation.”
Joshua then leapt to his feet and lifted up his hands over Joseph and me, shouting, “Be fruitful and multiply! 100 Let the curse be lifted! Let the blessing be upon you!”
He sat down just as abruptly as he had stood up. Taken by surprise, I hardly knew what to say. “What curse was upon us?”
Joshua responded, “To curse is to pronounce unholy. Those who have been fruitful have been pronounced unholy by those who have despised the word that is in them. That is why such people have been persecuted and killed in each generation in the past. The records of the elders cursed the people of the Voice by declaring them to be unholy and then treating them as such. Strangely enough, however, the next generation of elders then reversed their own curses and blessed them by declaring them to be holy. They adorned their graves and set up monuments to them, while continuing to kill the Voice-filled people of their own generation.” 101
Pausing for a moment, he stated with great deliberation, “The Voice has given us His blessing, and just now I was His present mouthpiece bearing witness to that word. A new thing is upon us, for by divine intent this blessing has passed through the veil between heaven and earth. This blessing was prophesied long ages past, and through the centuries all who have heard the Voice did their part in extending this blessing to whoever would listen. Nonetheless, the light has risen but slowly while darkness reigned in the hearts of most men. It is only now, I perceive, that a great commission has been given to us, and the final victory over darkness has been given to the bearers of light.”
There was a long pause as we each contemplated the significance of this new pronouncement.
“We must all work together,” Joshua said with all seriousness, “for each of us has a unique part in a plan that is bigger than ourselves. We are not ourselves. In us reside many others, and their hopes and dreams, and their strengths as well, go with us. What we do, they all do, for we are all one. 102 In fact, it would not surprise me if many others, even now, are being raised up in other parts of the earth for similar missions. What they do, we do, for they are not themselves either. They are us, even as we are them.”
After a pause, he added, “For now, they are not our concern, of course. We must focus upon our mission here and let the Voice lead others as He wills.”
“We each have something to offer,” I responded. “Let us prepare ourselves and gather our gifts for the work ahead. As for me, I must go back to the mountain once again to fully prepare myself for my part in this work.”
“I will call for a Town Hall meeting tomorrow,” Joshua said. “We will gather the people together to present the blueprint for the Kingdom according to our commission.”
“And I too will unearth my hidden treasure,” said Joseph. “It is time to lift the curse, so that the Creator’s rights may be re-established in the earth, and men may learn to steward their inheritances according to His will.”
We stood facing each other for a moment, and when each had given his final blessing to the others, we parted in peace and with great hope that a better world was upon us.