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The Rock

May 08, 2006

At the beginning of Israel's sojourn in the wilderness under Moses, the people ran out of water. When Moses prayed for a solution to the problem, God told him in Exodus 17:6,

"Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock at Horeb; and you shall strike the rock, and water will come out of it, that the people may drink."

The Apostle Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 10:4,

"And all drank the same spiritual drink, for they were drinking from a spiritual rock which followed them; and the rock was Christ."

The rock was a prophetic picture of Jesus Christ who was to be smitten in order to bring the water of life to the people. It prophesied of His death on the cross. And so the soldier pierced His side after He had died, and out came blood and WATER (John 19:34).

At the end of Israel's 40 years in the wilderness, Israel had a parallel experience that was supposed to prophesy of the second coming of Christ. The people again ran out of water in Numbers 20, but this time God told Moses to SPEAK to the rock--not to strike it. This is because in the second appearance of Christ ("the Rock"), it is no longer a death work, but a preaching work.

We see the same pattern in the book of Jonah, who also was a prophetic type of Christ. The first time Jonah was called to preach the Word to Nineveh (the capital of Assyria, Israel's enemy), he fled on a ship heading the opposite direction. He ended up in the belly of a large fish, which prophesied of Jesus' death and burial. When Jonah was vomited out, the story prophesied of Jesus' resurrection from the dead.

Then we read in Jonah 3:1,

"Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah THE SECOND TIME, saying, 'Arise, go to Nineveh the great city and proclaim to it the proclamation which I am going to tell you'."

Jonah then went and preached the word to Nineveh, causing the entire population to repent (Jonah 3:6-9). Thus, the second appearance of Christ is characterized by the preaching of the Word that brings the earth into subjection to the rightful Heir of all things. This is the result of the fulfillment of the Feast of Tabernacles, the fulness of the Spirit by which this work will be accomplished.

And so we see that Jesus died on the cross to fulfill the first calling of Jonah, but the second calling is entirely different. It is not that we ought to stop preaching Christ and Him crucified; but rather that we ought to see the purpose of the second coming of Christ. That purpose is not to destroy the so-called "enemies of God," but rather to cause them to repent through the preaching of the Word. In the incident where Moses struck the rock the second time, this second work of Christ occurs at the END of the Pentecostal Age and the wilderness sojourn of the Church. This shows that the second work of Christ is not really fulfilled in the Age of Pentecost, but rather in the Age to come.

There is a great outpouring of the Spirit that is yet to come, and it will not be just another Pentecostal revival.

But Moses struck the rock, which set the pattern of rebellion, rather than of the purpose of God. Moses had broken the prophetic type that this was intended to tell us. He became a prophetic type of leader who had no vision beyond the cross. He represented those who had no vision of the Feast of Tabernacles or of the second work of Christ. Hence, the Church today has not been taught the Feast of Tabernacles, or its fulfillment, or its purpose in bringing all creation into the glorious liberty of the sons of God. The leaders continuously teach about how the Rock was struck, but they know very little about the rest of the story.

With Moses and Aaron, this had serious consequences. Numbers 20:12 says of this,

12 But the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, "Because you have not believed Me, to treat Me as holy in the sight of the sons of Israel, therefore you shall not bring this assembly into the land which I have given them."

As a result, Moses was replaced by Joshua, and Aaron was replaced by Eleazar. Israel's sojourn in the wilderness was prophetic of the Age of Pentecost leading to the entrance into the Kingdom of God. Thus, Moses and Aaron could bring the Church ("assembly") to the border, but only Joshua and Eleazar would bring the Church into the Kingdom.

Moses and Aaron represent the old order. Joshua and Eleazar represent the new order. This has two fulfillments. First, it speaks of the transfer of authority from the Old Testament era to the New Testament era. In this fulfillment, Jesus Christ is Joshua (Yeshua, or Joshua), who came to earth as recorded in the gospels. However, this was only a partial fulfillment of the prophecy, because Joshua was of the tribe of Ephraim (Num. 13:8), not of Judah. Yet Jesus came the first time of the tribe of Judah and of the lineage of David.

The second and greater fulfillment of this prophetic type comes in Christ's second coming, for this time He comes as Joshua the Ephraimite (i.e., of Joseph). Ephraim was the holder of the birthright, and He must come the second time to claim His birthright. This is the appearance that leads us into the Kingdom.

For this reason, Jesus' first appearance resulted in the establishment of a Pentecostal Kingdom--typified by the reign of King Saul. But the second appearance will result in the establishment of a Tabernacles Kingdom--typified by the reign of King David.

In regard to Aaron, his successor was Eleazar. He carries the same name as in the story of Eli, who died and was replaced by Eleazar. This ties the two stories together, because both deal with a "regime change." Both are prophetic of the great change of priesthood, not only from Old to New Testament, but in a greater way from Pentecost to Tabernacles.

Pentecost, being a leavened feast, cannot bring one into perfection. The earnest of the Spirit that came through Pentecost must ultimately give way to the greater anointing of Tabernacles, the fulness of the Spirit.

These biblical stories have more than one level of meaning. It is amazing how God can tell a story, using real people as they make history, and make it all happen as a historical allegory that has prophetic meaning. And then, when there is more than one fulfillment of the prophecy, the same story finds a new prophetic application. Incredible!

The story of Aaron being succeeded by Eleazar applies to both the transition from Old to New Testament and to the present-day transition from the Pentecostal priesthood to the Tabernacles Priesthood. But 1 Kings 2:27 makes it clear that the prophecy against Eli was not really fulfilled until Solomon replaced the line of Eli with Zadok.

So this story actually prophesies a two-step fulfillment from Levi to Melchizedek. Eleazar presides in the Age of Pentecost, while Zadok presides in the Age of Tabernacles.

It can be a bit confusing unless one studies it carefully. I just want to point it out as an idea for further in-depth study.


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Category: Teachings
Blog Author: Dr. Stephen Jones