(Part 4)


I Will Give Thee The Treasures of Darkness, and Hidden riches of Secret Places

"How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!" (Isa 52:7).

Beautiful: na'ah, to be at home, i.e. (by impl.) to be pleasant (or suitable), i.e. beautiful. (Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance).

Bringeth: basar, to be fresh, i.e. full (rosy, fig. cheerful); to announce (glad news). (Strong’s...)

Publisheth: shama', to hear or proclaim intelligently. (Strong’s...)

Salvation: yeshuw'ah...something saved, i.e. deliverance; hence aid, victory, prosperity. (Strong’s...)

We see here a threefold declaration: 1) Bringing good news. 2) Publishing, or as the Hebrew word indicates, telling or announcing the message intellectually. And 3) Declaring that our GOD REIGNS! Much could be said on behalf of the threefold things that pertain to spiritual matters; but it would take us away from the topic at hand. Suffice it to say, this threefold word of good news brings things into focus, to completion, and finally to an outward manifestation of what the word speaks. This is what the watchmen declare — a threefold word that produces reality in people’s lives.

These sentinels of God, the messengers of the Lord, if you please — are the ones who, like their Father, will not keep silent until righteousness shines like the dawn, her salvation breaks forth like a blazing torch, and New Jerusalem becomes a praise in the earth (Isa 62:1,6-7).

Oh, but what trying times these flaming evangels have endured. How can they be measured? And to make matters worse, the word has been like fire shut up in their bones. It has been as it was with Jeremiah — and must have been with David and his men, before he took the throne; they have been held aside in the caves of Adullam.

While in these dark places, they have embraced living firebrands, yearning to release them so others might live and have the peace of God that passes all understanding. The revelations given to them caused excitement to mount in their hearts over the years. By each new word they were greatly encouraged and ready to take the kingdom. Their passions waned, however, as dark shadows grew long and cold nights swept over their pavilions of lost hope. Without light and warmth from the Son, they could no longer maintain their pace. Many became weary and slept. But this was not the plight of all, for a few were called to keep watch. Sleep is not found in their vigilant eyes, for excitement mounts as they await the hour to announce the dawning of the Day.

Although vigilant, it is not always pleasant to stand watch. Anyone who has been in the military service will tell you so; for the nights can be long and lonely. Nevertheless, this they know; regardless of how desperately they desire to awaken everyone right now, at this very moment — they can’t. Upon each passing hour, those walking in union hear one another’s call across the courtyard and around the wall; but for most, they sleep and must be left alone for a little while. They must not be disturbed until it is time for the Day Star to arise brightly in their own hearts and dispels every vestige of darkness.

Before this dawn can be seen outwardly, there must be an enduring for another hour or two. However, some may not have to wait as long as others; for it could be that they will break forth by night when the foundations of their prisons are shaken apart, and every abusive shackle is broken and falls away. We see a similar earthquake, only natural, that laid waste the prison where Paul and Silas were locked and chained. The shockwaves would have normally taken their lives; but this was not a normal event. These men had a destiny set before them, and rather than being killed by the earthquake, it was the very instrument that freed them.

This needs to be understood today. We also have a destiny set before us, and regardless of their severity, the quakes are not sent to destroy us — but to free us!

Not everyone with the high calling upon them are among the Pauls and Silas in this hour of hardships, and they are not to be awakened by night. With these, an angel of the Lord will come in the morning announcing good news, publishing peace, bringing salvation, and declaring that their God reigns! So take heart and be encouraged, whether our deliverance comes by night or by day, deliverance will come.

Through a long night we have been kept in obscurity. For such a long time we have been in places we generally would not have chosen; but it has been herein that we have beheld the mysteries of God and eagerly drawn them into our hearts. They have given us such assuring peace, sustaining us through troubling times. This has ignited a burning desire to declare such wonderful truths to the whole world. However, with God’s wisdom prevailing, we have only been permitted to share them with those of like faith and kindred habitation. When we had thoughts of going out to set creation free, we were drawn back and told to keep our mouths shut, as the meaning of the Greek word for mystery states. (See Mysteries From Darkness, Part 1, free upon request.)

Nevertheless, the cry of the Spirit continues to penetrate the night as it ascends into the height of our heavens. It also descends into the depths of our earth and into the far reaches of our own imperceptible hell. This word spreads like a warming fire throughout each vessel who is a member of the body of Christ. Although we have been shut in and shut up from the world and the common church at large — to one another we have not been able to keep silent! Our voices have thundered through the night. Furthermore, we shall continue to thunder. We shall never keep silent, not until the warmth of His Salvation becomes a blazing torch in all the earth!

This fire began as a glowing ember twenty centuries ago, and it came where least expected — in a lowly conclave, in a stable among the beasts of burden. Not a likely place for such glory to appear; even so, it did and has waxed and waned through the centuries. Men have tried to extinguish that glorious flame; but the Holy Fire of God remains. It is unquenchable, and it grows brighter day by day. The very design of fire, especially this fire, is to increase itself. And this is what we see today as we endure the furnace of affliction (Heb.,'oniy; depression, i.e. misery) wherein we often find ourselves (Isa 48:10).

Although reality has made herself known in this arena of hardships, it is not difficult to find people today who are quick to reject this heated furnace seven times over. With some, even the mention of the subject will stir them to petulance. And I have no problem with this; for it is a natural thing to reject a word that shakes our foundations of hope, whether real or imagined. For that matter, we all have the tendency to some degree or another to turn down things that threaten our comfort. I doubt that Elijah was overjoyed when he prophesied the drought and famine in the land, for he had to suffer through it as well; nevertheless, He spoke what was required of him. And Jesus was probably not real exited about His impending crucifixion. The disciples certainly weren’t; but this did not stop Him from declaring what lay ahead and then submitting Himself to it. Can we do less?

It has been said to me that we shouldn’t speak of hardships, that we should have a positive confession and look on the brighter side of life. Can you imagine Daniel confessing that he was not in the lions’ den, that he was really in the comforts of his home with a littler of kittens to keep him company? Not at all! But he could have truthfully declared: "My mind is not stayed on this dark place. I look to the brighter side of life — the Lord my God. He is able to keep me from falling, and to present me faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy."

I have also been told that no good can come from our afflictions and often infirmities, that all the ills and dark days we suffer in the natural are nothing more than ills and dark days. Other than perhaps the experience of being touched by humanity’s pain, such things serve no purpose at all, so they say. However, we read from Isaiah, and know by experience the following:

"And I will give thee the treasures of DARKNESS, and HIDDEN riches of SECRET PLACES, that you may know that it is I, the LORD, the God of Israel, Who calls you by your name" (Isa 45:3, Amplified).

We shouldn’t have to be told that treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places are not found on busy street corners or in the light of day. Treasures of darkness are found in darkness, even in the pavilion of darkness where God abides. Such priceless things are not easily obtained. Let us also be reminded: "Verily thou art a God that hidest Thyself, O God of Israel, the Saviour" (Isa 45:15), and "He made DARKNESS HIS SECRET PLACE; HIS PAVILION round about him were DARK WATERS and THICK CLOUDS..." (Psa 18:11). These dark waters and thick clouds are made up of His people. Their darkness is brought about by afflictions of various hardships. And it is herein where the cherished treasures of Christ are found — in His body of many afflicted members.

(Psa 68:33-35 shows us that clouds are symbolic of His people. Rev 17:15 identifies waters as people, only here it speaks of the people of the world rather than of God.)

It is not common for one to choose pavilions of dark waters to swim in, and we won’t find many who will of their own design clothe themselves with thick clouds of dire circumstances. Nor would most elect to spend forty days in the wilderness without provisions. Not even Jesus would do this of His own accord; but when the season came and the Spirit led Him to that place of desolation, He willingly submitted (Mat 4:1, Mark 1:12). It was in this pavilion of darkness that He was tempted, or scrutinized, enticed, and disciplined, as the Greek word suggests.

A region void of friendly life or nice living conditions is not where most would think God could be found. In our natural way of reasoning, we look more to the pleasant places to find God — in church, in worship services, in Spirit-filled gatherings, in anointed messages, and other religious activities. And make no mistake about it — He can certainly be found in all these places. But there is this mysterious place of darkness where He is also found.

According to the record, Jesus knew His Father from at least the age of twelve years; but He had no authority as a child to use His power to heal the sick, cast out demons, or raise the dead. It was not until He learned from His Father, then spent His appointed time in the wilderness of God’s dark pavilion, and resisted temptation that He was given authority. Being undergirded by obedience he was then sent into another hostile land — the world.

Contrary to our desires to dwell on the fruited plains of celestial glory, God drives us into the barren wilderness, into the furnace of affliction (Isa 48:10). He leads us through dark waters, deep valleys, and thick clouds, yet our journey is not in vain. It is for the purpose of finding Him in a new and living way.

Anyone searching for the Prince of Peace would not think to look in the darkness of the lions’ den; but that is where He was found by Daniel. Who could have imagined that his three friends would be finding a breath of fresh air (the Son of God) among the flames of the fiery furnace. Although He dwells in the height of the heavens, He often makes His pavilion in the dark valleys of rejection, among the halls of loneliness, in the midst of debilitating infirmities — in the fire. These are things we do not seek; but you can rest assured, if we are called to Sonship, God will make them our places to Tabernacle for a season.

We must not forget, Jesus baptizes us in fire (Luke 3:16), and it is this element that reveals Him in a fashion we had never known. Not only will it work a marvelous thing in us; but the immersion will enable our Lord of glory to be seen coming with great power in these thick clouds of heaven that we are. From where He dwells, from the place He is now hidden, from the clouds of His people (Psa 68:33-35) — He will be seen unfolding His bright rays into a dark world.

This pavilion is different from the one wherein we walk with Him in the wonderful presence of His Spirit. It is not that part of God which bears us on eagles’ wings, and brings us into the safe haven of His arms while sheltering us from the storm. It is the habitation of adversities. They are the proving grounds for the sons of God.

We should know, however, that in the midst of the storm, when the billows roll fiercely over our bows, we are in no grave danger. Regardless of the trouble that blows through our lives, He is with us. He will never fail us, He will not leave us, and there will not be a moment when we are forsaken. We have seen His faithfulness time and time again, and it is made clear in scripture (Deut 31:6 & Heb 13:5).

You may make your bed in hell. You may feel He is not within a million miles. But even in such depths — He is there:

"If I ascend up into heaven, Thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, Thou art there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall Thy hand lead me, and Thy right hand shall hold me" (Psa 139:8-10). To where will you go that God is not there? To what part of the world or circumstance can you descend where He is not holding, carrying, and leading you? Hmmm... With Him living IN YOU, it’s impossible to find such a place.

I’ll tell you right now, once you get your focus off your darkness, once you stop majoring in your dilemma, once you quit feeling sorry for yourself — you will see His light shining so brightly in your life that you may be blinded by it. This is not to say that the burden and yoke will be immediately lifted; but it will certainly become light and easy.

Very often people’s problems come when they pray according to the will of their flesh rather than the Spirit. In doing so, they don’t get what they pray for and shear anguish sets in. When they find themselves in the hardships of refinement, straightway they reject it. They ask, "Why would God let me go through something so terrible when He could prevent it?" The answer is simple — He is not "letting" you go through it — He is "making" you go through it. He is driving you through it as surely as an unbroken horse is driven into a corral and broken by its owner. If the horse learns obedience, forsaking its own will, it can then be used throughout the man’s kingdom. If not, it will be sold for dog food and soap. If your will is not broken during this time, and you insist on maintaining your self-expression (compare Heb 1:3), I doubt that you will wind up as dog food and soap; but you will be of little value in the Kingdom of God. Think about it.

Ray Prinzing wrote these timely words about prayer: "How desperately we need the help of the Spirit, for He knows what is the mind of God, and He can help us to know the will and purpose of God. Most especially in the realm of prayer do we need His Help. We may know the general objects, but we do not always know the specifics, the detailed object in the emergency, or situation....

"...He comes to our aid, takes hold of the heavy end of the prayer, and in our behalf, not to absolve us from doing any praying, but TO ASSIST US, that we might pray ON TARGET. So as He makes intercession for us — it is an involvement with us. He does not have to plead with God for God’s will to be done— how foolish! The intercession of the holy Spirit is an involvement with man, helping us to flow in harmony with the will of God. And the will of God is not always to ‘zap us out of the situation,’ but to help us to OVERCOME. Overcoming requires a lot of DIVINE HELP, and it is this ASSISTANCE OF THE SPIRIT which becomes so vital to us.

"Likewise, in our praying for others, we do not always know the specifics of God’s handiwork in their life, and just what HE purposes to do in that given moment, hence we need the Spirit’s help in our praying for others. True intercession for another does not mean that we fall flat on our face and groan and howl and TELL GOD WHAT TO DO — how He should carry out what we think should be done in the situation. Nay, but it means we are joining into oneness with the will of God for them — helping them carry the load to that end — the ultimate fulfillment of God’s purpose for them." End quote.

At times, when we feel the need for our Lord the most, we may be taught faith and endurance in a different way. He might be found sleeping in the back of our frail vessels as we are tossed about and the waves savagely rip at our sails (Mark 4:37-38); but fear not fellow seafarers, for we are on a mission with Him. We have been sent to the other side of life’s Galilee, and come rain or shine, wind or calm, hell or high water — we will arrive safely, so don’t jump ship. With life — life tried and true — we will disembark upon the coastline of death and finish what we were sent to do. Those in the tombs of the Gadarenes await us. It’s been 2,000 years of demoniac oppression for them, and they cry out for mercy. They will not, and cannot, be chained by religious legalism any longer, and they groan to be freed by the life of Christ.

Until the sons of God make their way across the troubled sea, and they step upon the rocky shore and through the portals of death and hell, not many will be made free. Those doors will remain bolted about with strong bars; but once ashore, the gates of hell shall not prevail. Such hindering forces of darkness must relent; for the keys of death and hell are in our hands (Rev 1:18) and whether you know it or not, we are called to free every soul appointed to death (Psa 102:19-20).

If the spark of Sonship has not lit our paths, we may cry a little, or moan, and question why must we suffer the ravages of these storms when the tranquil beaches of home are much more pleasant. As mentioned before — we are being prepared to set the captives free, and they cannot be made free until WE are free. We are of little good to those in the prison of corruption until we have put on incorruption. Until then, all we can do is to empathize with them. Immortality can only be known after we have been subjected to mortality and rise out of it. It is then that the saying shall be brought to pass that is written, "...Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?" (1 Cor 15:54-55).

We may refuse to confess such things have befallen us; but denial cannot annul reality. Jesus never once denied His wilderness experience.  He saw it through to the end and overcame His human frailties in the midst of desolation. And please take note — this was at His weakest point, not when He was strong.

On the other hand, perhaps we can easily see the flames of adversity, but still refuse to believe the afflictions and conditions have any worth whatsoever to our Spiritual growth. Nevertheless, with understanding and as the sons of God, there is great worth. Otherwise, we would not have been driven into such dreadful places, and we can count on them working untold eternal weights of glory in our lives (2 Cor 4:17). If, however, we do not recognize the call and purpose of why we are here — it is likely we will miss being chosen and will not be sent to free those held in death and darkness. We will die in the wilderness as we bury our heads in the desert’s sand. Perhaps we need to be reminded — "Many are called," as Jesus said, "but few are chosen" (Mat 22:14). Let us, therefore, not be merely among the called; but let us be found worthy to be chosen and sent to the groaning creation of Romans 8:19-22.

Permit me to put you to a simple test while in the wilderness. This will help to determine if your attitude is that of a mature son or not. As you lay in bed with your leg rotting away with gangrene, do you speak in a commanding tone to be healed in the name of Jesus? In your dilemma of cancer, are you believing for all the faith you can muster, and then rebuking the spirit of cancer while giving the order for it to leave your body? With fever racking your body, are you amassing all the scriptures of promise you can recall, and are you reminding God of what He said? In doing these things, are you also claiming them for your own, and also quoting them to the devil? And are you demanding in the name of Jesus for 98.6 to be your temperature?

There may be nothing wrong with using any or all the above in your time of trouble; that is, if you have first gone to the proper source and received a command from Him to do so. However, to seek first that which is of the world before seeking that which is from above would be submitting to the temptations of the flesh. Jesus was tempted in like manner, but without sin. He did not submit to it. You see. There is nothing wrong with being healed. Gangrene, cancer, and viruses are all enemies — and hunger is also an enemy. If any of these enemies are left unchecked and not overcome, the body will die. Therefore, there is nothing wrong with commanding a healing, or turning a stone into bread. For instance, the first miracle Jesus did was to turn water into wine, and there was no eminent danger of death lurking around. And as I remember our friend, J. Preston Eby, saying, "A lot of Pentecostals would have preferred that Jesus turned the stone into bread than water into wine."

The problem is not in turning a stone into bread, or anything else into whatever meets the need. There is nothing wrong with healing the body of a disease or infirmity. The problem comes from calling upon and using the wrong source. If we speak a word, do a deed, or work anything due to the inspiration derived from the temptations of the flesh — the source is wrong. It is devilish. It is fleshly. It is from the prompting of the spirit that inspires the carnal mind, which is the devil. It is not the right source. The spirit is wrong. Oh, but praise God! When the Source is the Spirit of Christ, the One that inspires the Spiritual mind — it is the right Source. It is the right Spirit! It is then right to speak and do what we hear and see the right Spirit speaking and doing!

With your leg or internal organs being consumed away, no doubt, your first thought is to command a healing. And please, don’t condemn yourself for being tempted to do such a thing. Temptation is not wrong. For instance, at the brink of starvation, Jesus was tempted to turn the stone into bread; but He did not yield to the voice he heard enticing His mind. It was not the voice He was accustomed to hearing from which His life came. Being the Son of God, He knew He had the power of His Father. If, however, the inspiration had been that of the tempter, He would have been lacking the proper authority. It would have been akin to what we might do in similar circumstances, and what a misuse of power it would have been. Rather than taking up His scepter and venturing out on His own, in patience He waited. By doing so, His wilderness experience afforded Him not only God’s authority; but it was also with power and honor unto the salvation of all men. By waiting to hear a word from the right Source — the voice from on High — He not only rules over men but also in men.

When you are in the midst of trials and unprecedented hardships, seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these other things will be added unto you. That is the way of the Kingdom. Don’t seek first the earth and expect the Kingdom to be added. It doesn’t work that way. Don’t merely seek a healing or a deliverance from your problems — seek first God and His righteousness. Seek the Source of all righteous authority and power, and when the time comes, the deliverance will come in righteousness. It will come right and not wrong.

To believe these wilderness experiences serve no purpose would be saying the one Jesus went through served no purpose for Him either. If what we are enduring has no merit, then we are no better off than the dead world. But we see there is merit, even great merit; for it is from the confines of these hard and difficult places that comes the authority to free the ones held captive. It is from these dark pavilions that we are prepared, proven faithful, given authority, and then sent out.

There is a world out there that needs to be saved; but they cannot be saved while we are in preparation. Also, they cannot be saved, for they have not yet believed. And this is no fault of their own — for they have not heard:

"How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!" (Rom 10:14-15).

Preach: kerusso; to herald (as a public crier), espec. divine truth, (the gospel) (Strongs...).

We have been held for a season in obscure and difficult tabernacles; but praise God, these are not our permanent habitations. Only the rebellious dwell continually in the dry lands of the wilderness (Psa 68:6). The sons of God, however — we who are made ready to possess the land — do not remain in such arid conditions.

The time is upon us to leave them, and sound the call to arms. It is getting more difficult to remain quiet. We cannot hold our peace forever, and are not expected to. Furthermore, the word in our bones burns too fierce to keep silent. The lost and afflicted of the world are crying for deliverance, and like Paul said — how shall they be saved unless they believe, and how can they believe if they do not hear, and how can they hear if we are not sent? Again, "How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!" (Isa 52:7). And let me add — how can we be sent if we are not prepared, and how can we be prepared if there is no wilderness?

Contrary to our desires, the wilderness is an absolute necessity for the overcomers, yet while we abide in our Tabernacles therein — the passion of our Love for God remains high. Those destined to rise in Christ’s glory have always had this fervency stirring in their hearts; for they have been immersed in the passion of His love. Such love has been the foundation of every prophetic prose resounding from the watchmen. Like thunder, their words have pierced the shroud of night. Through all the prophets of the ages, God has spoken, and He speaks through us today.

Those were stirring days that brought such men on the scene; but never has there been a time in the history of man to compare with this present age. Although unheard by most, God is pouring out His Word and Spirit upon His elect, demanding an obedient ear of those who represent His Kingdom. He raised up His prophets in the past, and He is raising up prophets today. Even now, they are declaring His word loud and clear, even as you read these words. Therefore, gird yourselves; for the Spirit of the King is yearning to make of you a flaming evangel of this new day! Surely, you feel the surge of your destiny, the charge of lightning striking deep into your being. Surely, you hear this climactic call. "Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee" (Isa 60:1) The time is nigh to leave the wilderness! The hour has come to quench the violence of fire! For creation groans, awaiting your appearing as the flaming heralds of fire!

Elwin R. Roach

Part 3


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