When The Priesthood Intercedes Between The Porch & The Altar, God Delivers His People
Today’s Word Of Encouragement From Wayne:
“Let the priests, the Lord’s ministers weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, ‘Spare Your people, O Lord.’... then the Lord will be zealous for His land and will have pity on His people. The Lord will answer and say to His people, ‘Behold, I am going to send you grain, new wine and oil, and you will be satisfied in full with them.’”
We saw yesterday how God had directed His priests, “the Lord’s ministers,” to proclaim a solemn assembly, gathering all of the people to the house of the Lord (Joel 1:14). God repeated this word to the priests, “Blow a trumpet in Zion, proclaim a solemn assembly” (Joel 2:15) right after He lovingly appealed to His disobedient people, saying, “‘Return to Me with all your heart, and with fasting, weeping and mourning; and rend your heart and not your garments.’ Now return to the Lord, for He is gracious and compassionate... Who knows whether He will not turn and relent and leave a blessing behind Him, even a grain offering and a drink offering” (Joel 2:12-14).
It was immediately after these words that God directed His priests to “weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, ‘Spare Your people, O Lord.’” My Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Bible commentary says of this verse, “The suppliants thus were to stand with their backs to the altar on which they had nothing to offer, their faces towards the place of the Shekinah presence.”
In this passage we clearly can see that, while God calls all of His people to repentance, He relies upon His Own Covenant Priesthood to communicate His will to all the people and to intercede for all the people. It is the priests of the Lord who draw near to the Shekinah glory of God. And in this case, when His loyal priests did call all of the people to return to God, and then interceded for them before God’s presence, IT WAS THEN that God spoke words, not just of temporary deliverance, but of eternal deliverance.
Remember, the grain and drink offerings had slowed down and had been cut off. There was literally no sacrifice for sins. While the people’s regard for the temple was lacking, that’s when the enemy came in like a flood. And now it was up to the priesthood to deliver God’s word of repentance to His covenant people and then to intercede for them.
I believe these same truths, declared in Joel, are for us in this day as God’s New Covenant priesthood, being completely fulfilled for us in Jesus Christ our eternal “new wine” of the New Covenant (Matthew 9:17, Luke 5:37-39) Who fills us with the “oil” of God’s anointed Holy Spirit! When God said “Behold, I am going to send you grain, new wine and oil, and you will be satisfied in full with them” our Lord was actually saying, just like Abraham said to His son Isaac, when Isaac innocently asked, “Where is the lamb for the burnt offering”, Abraham responded “God will provide for Himself the lamb” (Genesis 22:7-8).
In this case God was essentially saying that even though His people were once again neglectful and faithless, and even though the enemy had come in to oppress them, and even though there were no sacrifices, God would Himself provide the sacrifice, “I am going to send you grain, new wine and oil, and you will be satisfied in full with them.’” Oh hallelujah, God HAS provided for us the eternal sacrifice of Jesus Christ, once for all people (Hebrews 9:24-26) and we are “satisfied in full” with HIM!
We are God’s priesthood in this day and every single time we minister to our Lord we are in the presence of the Shekinah glory of our God within our inner court temple, the secret room within us for God (2 Corinthians 4:6, 6:16).
In Joel, God called upon His priesthood to declare the message of repentance and the message of God’s lovingkindness, mercy, and compassion to His people. It was the priesthood who delivered God’s prophetic word of deliverance for His people in their temporary situation, and to all people forever of His providing a sacrifice in which they would be “satisfied in full.” And it was the priesthood that interceded before God for all the people of God.
This is the truth of our saying yes to being God’s New Covenant priesthood in this day, for every single Christian on planet Earth! Yes, let us rise up to this holy awareness, call, and obedience. Let us clearly see that being God’s holy priesthood in real time, of which we are all saved to be (Revelation 1:5-6, 5:9-10), is God’s protection for the body of Christ. It is the priesthood that calls all of God’s people to draw near to His house, to be strong and holy in our Lord, looking to no other. It is the priesthood that ministers to God in His presence, and intercedes for the entire body of Christ to be towards their Lord, and this truth actually will keep the body of Christ centered in Jesus Christ, if only God’s people will regard and revere their sacred priesthood in Christ, the One in Whom we are “fully satisfied” now and forever!
Minister with reverence and gladness today in the presence of your God Who has lovingly and graciously filled you with His “new wine and oil,” and be “satisfied in full.” Hallelujah!