April 23, 2002 Tuesday
"Issachar (Issachar, from the Hebrew term NACAH "To lift;" meaning "He will bring a reward) is a strong ass, couching down between two burdens. And he saw that rest was good; and the land that it was pleasant. And bowed his shoulder to bear, and became a servant unto tribute." (Genesis 49:14-15)
My time of prayer began with a burden on my heart. It was there this morning as I went about my day. As I looked into the realm of the Spirit, I saw a vision of a man, saying: "Look at the news." I looked at the news, and it was Bethlehem! It was as if some were saying: If Yeshua is Messiah, He will be with us in this battle. As I thought on our Rock, our God, the King of the Universe, the word of the Lord came for His people: But first I want to say: Don't look for omens to tell you who Messiah is. Look only into the pages of the holy scripture. Do not be a person who is superstitious. Be grounded in God's word, so it alone will hold you when the storm winds blow.
As the vision opened, I saw a people saying: This is the land given me by my fathers. You can occupy this land says the Lord, if you can stand up and declare to Me: Whomade this land for you to dwell in? (My mind went back to God's servant Job, and God appearing to him from out of the whirlwind.) I see you "burdened." And in the vision, the people said unto the Lord:
"The temple of the Lord. The temple of the Lord are we!"
And the word of the Lord came saying: Are you prepared to pull up your tent pegs and to go to the land which I will show you? For so shall you be "the Issachar of God.
I did not give you these burdens for nothing--So that you would say to the Lord: Why have you burdened me in this way? But so that you would carry that which needs to be borne, through to fruition.
THE ROCK CALLED PETRA:
Now in the vision, I see "olive trees." You shall visit *Petra, (See notes) says the Lord, and learn what I did to the people there. For so My people say: I am Judah! (meaning: He whom his brethren shall praise) And I have given you this name in the One to whom all praise is due. But you shall see a moving and a shaking even as many of you have prayed. And it shall scatter My people over the earth. Even into those places they did not want to go. (In the vision, I see a Buddist shrine) What will you do when your name is Issachar and the Lord says: It is time for you to leave? For Issachar saw that the rest was good, and the land pleasant and bowed his shoulder to bear and became a servant to tribute. (Genesis 49:15)
I would save you as a man spares his only son, says God. I would save you from your worries and your fears of that which is to come. But you must move when the strong winds blow, like a tree bends in the wind, though it remains firmly planted. But some of you have become dry and brittle, you no longer sway with the wind of My Spirit; for your heart is fixed on other things. Who made the back of Issachar strong to bear the infirmities of the weak? Was it not I? See that you do it then, says your God.
I said that I have given you two burdens. The other is lowly--but it is a fount of cleansing.
Don't make me the donkey, they say: I am more dignified than that. But what good is a burden bearer if it does not move? If it does not go to the place where the burden is and needs to be carried and carry it from here to there or from there to here? Do you see the eye of that needle? Would you criticize him that has the burden? Or undo the heavy burden and let the oppressed go free?
But it is a little donkey you say: It cannot carry much. I shall strengthen it's back to bear more, as you put your shoulder to it's burden. For you shall help teach it how to carry. For so shall My people spend time among the tribes--learning why I have called their names thus and so. And then you will not think it strange when I say:
For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ, of whom the whole family in heaven and in earth is named. (Ephesians 3:15)
For God who comanded the light to shine out of darkness has shined in your hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus christ. This word is from your Lord Jesus Christ, that you might behold Him as "He is." For I stated in My word: You shall see Him as He is."
For I have those that cry to Me and say: Give us Messiah! And why has the word of the Lord not come forth? Because I have made you a carrier, and a burden bearer of that word, and you shall ride it through to victory, says the Lord. You shall not over-throw and cast off the word of the Lord to you, but you shall fulfill it. Even the ancient things spoken by the mouthes of the prophets and I will bring it to pass says your God.
"God hath given me," said Leah, "my hire (Heb. sekhari)...and she called his name Issachar." Genesis 30:18). Issachar was Jacob's ninth son, born in Padan-aram. (See 28:2) God gave him four sons at the going down into Egypt (46:13; Numbers 26:23,25).
The Tribe of Issachar:
During Israel's wilderness journey, along with Judah and Zebulun (Numbers 2:5), Issachar marched on the east of the tabernacle. This tribe had 54,400 warriors when the census was taken at Mount Sinai. After they entered Caanan, the tribe was one of the six which stood on Gerizim during the ceremony of the blessing and cursing (Deuteronomy 27:12).
Issachar's allottment is described in Joshua 19:17-23. It included the plain of Esdraelon (=Jezreel), which was and still is the richest portion of Palestine (Deuteronomy 33:18,19; 1 Chronicles 12:40).
The prophetic blessing pronounced by Jacob on Issachar corresponds with that of Moses (Genesis 49:14,15; Compare Deuteronomy 33:18,19).
Comments On Petra In The Scriptures:
Petra is the Greek word for "rock". Its Bible name was "Sela". In this prophecy and vision, there is a reference to Petra. Is this used as a prophetic allegory? Very possibly. This is not unusual in scripture to see allegories of this sort. For some people it may be literal. However, there are at this time, a number of prophetic ministries calling themselves: The men or sons of Issachar, or the Issachar Generation.
There's also a reference to "the needles eyes," in relation to Petra. The biblical Petra is accessible by a narrow opening. Jesus tells us that "straight is the gate and narrow is the way leading to eternal life."
The earliest inhabitants of the biblical were the Horites, and later Esau, the brother of Jacob, settled in the territory south of the Dead Sea, and his descendants, the Edomites, gradually replaced the Horites. The Edomites lived in the region following Ithe Exodus, when israel came from Egypt, about 1445 BC.
About 400 BC, the Edomites were driven out by the Arabian Nabataeans, who made Petra their own capital and controlled the most important trade routes between the East and the West. Caravans passing through this territory had to pay tribute to the Nabataeans, and this revenue enabled them to become wealthy, building palaces of great grandeur, magnificent temples, theatres and tombs which were hewn out of the solid rock.
Caravans followed other routes in the later centuries, between the Orient and Europe. Traffic through Nabataean territory dried up, Petra became deserted and forgotten, till it for centuries was a legend. The references in bible were considered by some liberal critics to be fables, until 1812, when a man named Burckhardt, disguised as an Arabian sheik, discovered the lost city. He published his report, and it seemed almost unbelievable that such a picturesque place could have existed just 161 kilometres south of Jerusalem without being known.
With the instability of the political situation in the Middle East, visits to Petra were impossible for many years. In recent years, this ancient city become readily accessible. Biblical descriptions of Petra speak of lofty places, and the confidence of its inhabitants. The Prophet Jeremiah prophesied that the city would lose its power and become uninhabited. (Obadiah 3,4; Jeremiah 49:16-18)
Why did God predict the downfall of Petra? To answer this, one must look into the religious practices of this people, the sun god, whose main place of worship, the Jabel-Aibb' Atuf, is the best-preserved high place in all the Bible lands. Here they offered human sacrifices! Nearby, two obelisks may be seen which were probably sun pillars of fertility.
Because of these and other abominable practices, God instructed Israel as they entered Canaan, to destroy the "high places." God predictd the downfall of this place because of the abominations done here, thus God doomed to destruction the cities like Petra. Read Joel 3:19 and Ezekial 35:3,4,9.
Standing amidst Petra's colourful ruins, you can hear the voice of its desolate silence declaring that God's word is true!