2001: The first Challenge
In November 2000 the transfer of authority was done in heaven, not in secret but without the knowledge of most people. It has yet to be more universally recognized, but this ignorance of the divine will has no effect upon its efficacy. The interim, however, has been marked by appeals and legal challenges in the Divine Court, as the contenders and pretenders to the throne make their case to regain their position of dominance.
The first major challenge came on January 29, 2001, sparking a general time of spiritual warfare for many months. The revelation began on January 23, while I was at a Sonship conference with Elaine Cook in Vista, California. There we asked the Father what date to watch next. He replied, “January 29.”
We wondered if this date might be connected to 1991, which would have been the normal 10-year cycle, otherwise known as “The Hezekiah Factor.” But the Lord surprised us by saying, “No, it is connected to seven years ago” (i.e., 1994).
On Jan. 29, 1994 a full-page ad was placed in the Jerusalem Post declaring Rabbi Menachem Schneerson of New York City to be the Messiah and appealing to the Israelis to accept him as such. This ad appeared while we were in the midst of a prayer campaign called “His Fulness” (Jan. 27-30, 1994). Of course, a false messiah (in my view) was staking his claim to the authority to bring the fulness of the Spirit as prophesied in Scripture. He was not accepted, either by God or by the Israelis, but we knew that the promise of His Fulness would be given to the overcomers.
The point is that in 1994 the Jewish messiah challenged the overcomers' authority to receive His Fulness. Seven years later the Church under Pentecost made a similar challenge on Jan. 29, 2001. The objection was based largely upon our overthrowing the old Jerusalem two months earlier, wherein we declared the New Jerusalem to be the capital of the Kingdom.
And so we learned on January 23, 2001 that a “petition” and “accusation” had been filed against us in the Divine Court the previous day. The court date was set for January 29, and if we did not answer it, they would win by default. This often happens in such cases, because Christians are largely unaware of the legal process, having neglected their study of the divine law. Thus, the Church usually takes a beating, because it loses most of its cases by default—by not showing up in the Divine Court to challenge such petitions and accusations.
The Golden Calves
In studying the case at the time, I was led to the story of Jehu as well as King Ahab who had humbled himself (1 Kings 21:29). Ahab's humbling deferred judgment upon America for three years (1 Kings 22:1). As I explained in my book, The 1986 Vision of the Two Gulf Wars, President Clinton was a type of King Ahab. When he humbled himself before the congressional prayer breakfast on Sept. 11, 1998, he deferred judgment upon America for precisely three years to Sept. 11, 2001.
Of course, in January of 2001, we still did not know what might occur on Sept. 11, other than that the biblical pattern indicated war.
We knew that this would have Middle East implications, because we understood that the Prince of Persia was “the main petitioner” against us. In other words, he was not alone. Further study and revelation showed us that we were also dealing with the golden calves, which Jehu had not removed from Israel, even though he destroyed Baal worship (2 Kings 10:26-29). The golden calves had never been overthrown, from ancient times to the present.
The golden calf today is manifested primarily in the Church's Prosperity Gospel. It is rooted in the love of money and the idea that “godliness is gain” (that is, the idea that wealth is an indicator of spirituality and godliness). See 1 Tim. 6:5. For this reason, we know that a secondary petitioner against us was from those teaching the Prosperity Gospel.
Furthermore, it told us that in our answer on January 29, we were to appeal for the overthrow of the golden calf in America. (The Prosperity Gospel is a unique home-grown American idea, which has now been exported around the world.)
When the golden calf was built by Aaron in Exodus 32, the result was the removal of God's presence in that “Church in the wilderness.” We read in Exodus 33:7,
7 And Moses took the tabernacle and pitched it outside the camp, afar off from the camp, and called it “The Tabernacles of the Congregation.” And it came to pass that everyone who sought the Lord went out unto the Tabernacle of the Congregation, which was outside the camp.
In other words, the golden calf is the biblical reason why the glory of God left the Church under Moses, and the Prosperity Gospel is the primary reason for the same thing in the Church today. If anyone wants to get a Word of Truth from God, they must generally get it “outside the camp.”
These were the issues that faced us in January of 2001. And so our petition of Jan. 29, 2001 read in part,
“I ask that these golden calves be cast down, burned with fire, and ground to powder, even as Moses Thy servant did to the golden calf of his day. . . I ask that the whole Church be set free from all influence and domination by the golden calves and that the Church be put under the full authority of Jesus Christ alone.”
About an hour after the petition was made, the mail arrived at my office, and I received confirmation of the opposition. It was a letter from a woman claiming to be “Commander in Chief of the Army of the Lord,” threatening fire and brimstone upon me. She even sent a bag of ashes after burning one of my newsletters.
It would have been humorous, except that I immediately recognized it as the earthly manifestation of the spiritual event in the Divine Court. She wrote as follows:
Stephen E. Jones
Thus saith the Lord—Enclosed you will find the remnant of the Satanic army, comprised in part of would-be seekers who have dared cross the line into My Holy Kingdom. You are leading a group of people all across the land through the churches that I, by My hand, shall destroy. You, sir, with your carnal mind, carnal intent, and carnal baggage have portrayed yourself to be a General of sorts in My mighty Army. Henceforth I shall bring you to the ground, for you, with your carnal, Satanic moves, have crushed and put to death all hope of My true anointed ones from coming forth. In your carnal nature, your carnal mindsets—the enemy doth work death in your members. Yielding this day to this rebuke may save you; if you resist Me, saith God, My fury upon your life shall flow like a flame of fire against you.
1. You shall discontinue all teaching.
2. You shall remain at home until I dispatch a member of My mighty army unto you.
3. Fast and pray that the baptism of repentance fall upon your life.
I will take My wrath out upon your life for the evil you have committed against Me if these conditions are not met and adhered to. Your letter—your abomination of a writing—last—is enclosed. I use it as a seal today upon these words. Amen and Amen.
Tavjah-K—Commander in Chief of the Army of the Lord.
Interestingly enough, the letter had the flavor of a sore-loser concession speech, for she wrote, “you, with your carnal, Satanic moves, have crushed and put to death all hope of My true anointed ones from coming forth.” In other words, from her perspective, I had won the court battle, crushing her own hopes of receiving the Kingdom authority—and she was angry at the verdict!
Of course, I recognized that she herself did not realize that she was simply speaking on behalf of the “Saul” Church that had already been disqualified and rejected from ruling the Kingdom in the Age to come. Having seen this kind of thing before, I did not take it personally.
The fact is that seven years earlier, in 1994, we had petitioned for “His Fulness.” The results of that petition were emerging into the world seven years later in 2001, and so our competitors' spokesperson sent us a letter to inform us of our victory. This is what started the battles in 2001, because the opposition obviously felt cheated and totally disagreed with the divine verdict that went against them.