THE BRIDE COMING FORTH
By Christine Beadsworth
The Lord has been impressing two scriptures upon my heart in the past days: (Zechariah 4:7 KJV) Who art thou, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain: and he shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shoutings, crying, Grace, grace unto it.
(Psalms 102:13 KJV) Thou shalt arise, and have mercy upon Zion: for the time to favour her, yea, the set time, is come.
It seemed to me the Holy Spirit was highlighting an important event which was to take place in the spiritual realm and as I prayed for revelation and understanding of the times, I began to see an awesome parallel in the Word concerning the days we as the Church are living in. We are entering the appointed time in which God is pouring a double portion of favor upon His Bride! This is confirmed within these two verses as the word for 'time' in psalm 102 is 'eth' which is the same as 'kairos' in the Greek, meaning 'a window of time in which God moves'. The second word for 'time' in this verse means ' a fixed time or season, an appointed time, a festival'. So we see that the Lord is arising to meet an eternal appointment in this season. This is the time that was scheduled before the foundation of the earth and the appointment has not been canceled! This is the year of the Lord's favour when He is coming to comfort all who mourn in Zion. The word translated 'favour' in psalm 102:13 is 'to stoop in kindness to an inferior, to have pity on, to bestow'.
Zechariah says that the headstone is brought forth with cries of, "grace, grace". This word can also be translated as 'favour, favour'. What does favour do? It opens up the way for one to move or function freely. If you have favour with someone in a position of power, you are able to get doors opened for you in the direction you need to go!! Zechariah 4:7 shows us that a double portion of favour is going to make the way open for this headstone to be brought forth in the earth!
I began to be curious as to what this headstone was that Zechariah referred to. It is composed of two words:
Eben - a stone, a plummet, a stone of fire, a precious stone Rosha - the feminine word for head
So this headstone is feminine! This scripture is not referring to Christ, the head of the Body but to someone who is at a similar level of rulership with Him - His Bride. We see here the beautiful portrayal of the revealing of the Bride of the Lamb released to rule in the earth with a double portion of favour making way for her as she walks. Isaiah 61:7 says this:
For your shame ye shall have double; and for confusion they shall rejoice in their portion: therefore in their land they shall possess the double: everlasting joy shall be unto them.
Esther pleased the king more than all the other women and so he crowned her queen. Esther 2:17 says that she received grace and favour in his sight. Another way of saying this is, she received favour and favour - a double portion of favour!
When a Bride is crowned, she is given a position of authority in the kingdom and is empowered to rule.
(Proverbs 12:4 KJV) A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband
The word for 'virtuous' here means 'a force, an army, wealth, might, power, riches, valor, virtue, strength'. The Bride of Jesus is a virtuous woman; a warring, brave, strong army in the earth and she is the crown of her husband, Jesus.
(Isaiah 62:3 KJV) Thou shalt also be a crown of glory in the hand of the LORD, and a royal diadem in the hand of thy God.
She is a crown of glory, endued with favour, exercising righteous judgments in the earth and extending the Kingdom. It is the favour of God poured out in the coming season which will cause His people to go in and possess the land of their inheritance.
(Psalms 44:3 MKJV) For they did not get the land in possession by their own sword, neither did their own arm save them; but it was Your right hand, and Your arm, and the light of Your face, because You favored them.
God opened up the way at the Red Sea and at the Jordan for His people to go through and in this day we shall see a double opening, double favour, double anointing. Not only will there be evidence of the spirit of Elijah, but also of Elisha(who had a double portion of anointing).This is why we will do greater works for the Kingdom in this day.
It states in Zechariah 4:7 that Zerubbabel was the one who would bring forth this headstone, the Bride, who is a righteous plummet in the earth. What or who is he a picture of? I believe the answer is found in digging deep into the meaning of his name. It is a composite of two words:
Zeru - to flow
Babel - comes from a root word meaning ' to overflow, specifically with oil, to anoint'
So, wrapped up within this name is a double portion of flowing or an overflowing anointing. It is this double portion of anointing that will be the hallmark of the Bride in this day; it is this which will bring her forth to a place where she is recognized for who she is. As the crown of her Husband, she will carry the seal of His approval and favour. She is going to arise and shine for the glory of the Lord is upon her.
(Psalms 92:10 MKJV) But You shall lift up my horn as the wild ox; and I shall be anointed with fresh oil.
The word for 'anoint' in this scripture is only used once in the Word and means 'to overflow with oil'. The other words translated 'anoint' mean ' to rub in' signifying a smaller quantity of oil being used. So the anointing described here is a double portion anointing, the same one which flows over Aaron's beard and onto his garments
Psa 133:1 A Song of degrees; of David. Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments. As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the blessing, even life for evermore.
This outpouring of anointing is connected to the brethren being in unity; unity of purpose, heart and mind like the disciples on the day of Pentecost - they were in one accord in one place. It also describes the anointing as being a high-priestly anointing which is in actual fact a commissioning and anointing for a position, an equipping to carry out an office. In the same way, the Bride is made up of royal priests and just as Esther was crowned and thus equipped for her position, so too there is coming in this season, an outpouring upon those who take up their positions and appointments in Christ.
The oneness of heart and mind is underscored by the fact that it is a single headstone that is brought forth; a many-membered Bride, made up of mature sons with a single vision; to bring glory to their Bridegroom.
This headstone is also the plummet spoken of in Zechariah 4:10
(Zechariah 4:10 KJV) For who hath despised the day of small things? for they shall rejoice, and shall see the plummet in the hand of Zerubbabel with those seven; they are the eyes of the LORD, which run to and fro through the whole earth.
A plummet is an instrument used in adjusting building erections to a perpendicular line or to the upright. So this headstone or plummet is going to be a standard of righteousness against which all building in the Kingdom will be measured and tested. That which is not upright will be torn down and rebuilt according to the standard of righteousness because righteousness and justice are the foundations of His throne. We see also from the above verse that the seven spirits of God will rest upon this plummet or headstone, which is confirmed by Zechariah 3:8,9
'Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, thou, and thy fellows that sit before thee: for they are men wondered at: for, behold, I will bring forth my servant the BRANCH. For behold the stone that I have laid before Joshua; upon one stone shall be seven eyes: behold, I will engrave the graving thereof, saith the LORD of hosts, and I will remove the iniquity of that land in one day.'
So a hallmark of this bridal company will be that they operate in the power of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation, the Spirit of Counsel and Might , the Spirit of Knowledge and the Fear of the Lord. Isaiah 12 gives us a further explanation of how this Manchild will operate:
(Isaiah 11:3 KJV) And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:but with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.
This Branch, which is also a plummet and a headstone, will exercise judgement in righteousness because of the anointing. She will proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind.She will declare the year of the Lord's favour in the earth!
In Zechariah 3:9, when God says, "I will engrave", that word 'engrave' can be translated ' to open wide, to break forth, to let go free, to begin, to loosen'. The marking of God upon this stone will bring about a tremendous release to the Bride of Christ in this season. It will be a release marked by a double portion of divine favour. This servant that the Lord will bring forth is a bondslave Bride; One who has been set free but chooses to follow wherever the Spirit leads. She is the branch which grows and bears much fruit out of intimacy with the Bridegroom.
(Psalms 110:2 MKJV) The Lord will send forth the rod of Your strength from Zion; rule in the midst of Your enemies. Your people shall be willing in the day of Your power, in holy adornment from the womb of the morning: You have the dew of Your youth.
This rod or scepter sent forth out of Zion exercises God's authority through the ruling reining Bride of Christ as she extends the influence of His Kingdom in the earth. The above verse says that God's people will offer themselves willingly - they will say, " here am I, Lord; send me". It also speaks of them being set apart for His purposes in holiness, having been in a place of preparation for such a time as this - and from this womb, they shall be brought forth with shouts of 'favour, favour' into the fullness of their inheritance in Christ, a place of bridal rule and authority.
At this time, the feast of Pentecost or Shavuot is celebrated. There are very significant parallels prophetically for the Third Day Church in this feast. Firstly, it is celebrated 50 days after Passover. Fifty is the number of Jubilee, a set time of freedom from slavery and debt. Shackles are broken off and prisoners released at this time.
On the first Shavuot, God made arrangements with Moses to meet with His people, Israel:
(Exodus 19:10 KJV) And the LORD said unto Moses, Go unto the people, and sanctify them to day and to morrow, and let them wash their clothes, And be ready against the third day: for the third day the LORD will come down in the sight of all the people upon mount Sinai.
As we go into this season of Pentecost, the Lord is requiring a sanctifying and setting apart for His purposes. It is not acceptable to approach this time lightheartedly for we are entering one of God's appointed times in the earth and we do not want to miss the day of our visitation. The people were given two days to prepare and on the third day, God showed up. The church has had two thousand years to prepare herself for this appointment - has she made herself ready - have you made yourself ready? Have you forsaken all others to surrender yourself to the Lord? Shavuot was God's betrothal to His people Israel and in the manner of Jewish wedding ceremonies, it had to take place under a canopy or chuppah. Exodus tells us that the people gathered at the foot of the mountain or in Hebrew, 'under, beneath,the womb'. So they were covered both by the cloud and the overhanging mountain.
We are in the morning of the Third Day and in like manner, the presence of God is going to descend with thunder and lightenings and a thick cloud upon mount Zion. He is coming to seek the hand of His Bride; His heart yearns to know whether His people will say 'yes' to Him. In a Jewish wedding, the marriage covenant or contract is called ketubah and is a written document which is presented at the betrothal ceremony. The betrothal is considered as binding as the wedding ceremony. On that first Shavuot, the Midrash tells us that when God spoke, the people saw the sound waves as a fiery substance which divided and went to stand before each individual as a tongue of fire. Each person had to say," I will" and commit to this covenant with the Lord. Then the fiery substance went and wrote on the tablets of stone. God engraved the ketubah on these stone tablets, which were afterward broken by Moses because of the people's unfaithfulness.
Exo 32:16 And the tables were the work of God, and the writing was the writing of God, graven upon the tables.
At Pentecost, the people were in unity in one place and the Holy Spirit was poured out in tongues of fire, which rested on each one individually. This is considered to be the birth of the Church as we know it and the ketubah is written on our hearts, which are turned from stone to flesh. Shavuot was the birth of the nation of Israel and also a covenantal marriage ceremony between God and His people.
In this season God is bringing forth His servant, the Branch,( the Manchild) out of Zion, and His Bride, who will rule in righteousness in the earth. Once again, as the cloud of His presence overshadows us, He is coming to receive from each one of us an answer. Will we be His vessels, brought to the Kingdom for such a time as this? Mary was overshadowed by the Holy Spirit and her response was:
(Luke 1:38 KJV) And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word.
He is the One who comes to baptize with the Holy Spirit and with fire! Are you ready to receive a baptism of the fiery power of God in this day?
At this time God is laying a banquet before us and we each have an individual meal to eat, His specific purpose for us in these end times. Will we say yes and consume it, will we align ourselves with His desired purpose for our lives, no matter what the cost? We are the one stone of Zechariah 3 on which the Lord wants to engrave our new name. This is our married name; we leave our maiden names behind and take on His Name and all that it embraces. Just as on the first Shavuot when God engraved the stone tablets, we are going into the season when He is engraving stones again!
(Revelation 2:17 KJV) He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.
The word, 'knoweth' here means 'to grasp or understand'. Only you will fully understand the extent of the Lord's purposes for your life. Others may not see what He is making of you but deep within your spirit will be written and deposited the blueprint of your destiny in the Kingdom. The word, 'name' comes from the Greek meaning 'authority, character' and only the one who 'receiveth' this new name or 'takes hold of' this revelation of our authority and character in Christ, will understand and walk in the light of that revelation. We are His Bride, destined to rule and take dominion in the earth. Paul says, " I press on to take hold of that for which Christ took hold of me". We must press in and possess our inheritance because that day which is spoken of is this day in which we are priviledged to walk the earth. We have been brought to the Kingdom for such a time as this!
Psalm 110:2 tells us that His people will offer themselves 'willingly' in this day of His power. This word means 'to volunteer as a soldier'. The word for 'power' carries within it the sense of bringing forth and travailing. God is wanting an army to bring forth and birth something in the earth. This mighty army which is the rod and branch that is sent forth from Zion is arrayed in the beauty of holiness. They have sanctified themselves, just like the sanctification for two days before Shavuot. The Bride has been making herself ready for this morning of the Third Day!
Psalm 110, which is a Third Day psalm, says in the last verse;
(Psalms 110:7 KJV) He shall drink of the brook in the way: therefore shall he lift up his head.
This seems unconnected to the theme of the previous verses until we discover that the word 'drink' means 'to imbibe, banquet'. Here is the connection to the feast of our inheritance which the Lord is laying before us at this time. The root word for 'brook' is translated 'to inherit, to be made to possess, to occupy'! So this Branch that is sent forth out of Zion will feast on her inheritance. She will experience the fulfillment of God's promise to her - she will eat of the fruit of the promised land!
(Isaiah 25:6 KJV) And in this mountain shall the LORD of hosts make unto all people a feast of fat things, a feast of wines on the lees, of fat things full of marrow, of wines on the lees well refined.
Pentecost is also called the Feast of First Fruits. When God met with the Israelites and covenanted in marriage with them, they were to be a sign or a type in the earth, a firstfruits of what was to come:
(Jeremiah 2:2 KJV) Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, Thus saith the LORD; I remember thee, the kindness of thy youth, the love of thine espousals, when thou wentest after me in the wilderness, in a land that was not sown. (Jeremiah 2:3 KJV) Israel was holiness unto the LORD, and the firstfruits of his increase
In Revelation, it speaks of another firstfruits company who have God's name engraved upon them:
(Revelation 14:4 KJV) These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.
God is once again bringing forth a company in a similar type to Israel, His earthly Bride.When He exchanged vows with them that first Shavuot, he promised:
(Exodus 19:5 KJV) Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine: And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation.
These words, 'a peculiar treasure' are from the Hebrew word for 'jewel, wealth, to closely shut up' and appear again in a prophetic scripture referring to these very days in which we find ourselves:
(Malachi 3:16 KJV) Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name. And they shall be mine, saith the LORD of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him.
God is in the process of 'making up' His jewels for His crown. This is the Hebrew word meaning 'to appoint or bring forth'. This is His firstfruits company, His heavenly Bride, the one who is a crown to her Husband. She has been 'shut up' in a place of preparation but we are entering the time when He will openly display her as His treasure.
(Isaiah 62:3 KJV) Thou shalt also be a crown of glory in the hand of the LORD, and a royal diadem in the hand of thy God.
The wife of the Lord of Lords and King of Kings is a crown of fiery precious stones. In Revelation 21, the Lamb's wife is described as having a foundation of precious stones and being utterly beautiful to behold:
(Revelation 21:11 KJV) Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal
When a baby is born, there is a moment in the labour called the 'crowning of the head'. We are in that moment even now at this Pentecost season. God is bringing forth the crown of the Head , His jewels who are living memorials to show the Lord is upright and faithful to His promises.
Another picture of these jewels is seen in the the two wave -loaves of finely ground flour which are a firstfruits offering to the Lord at the time of Shavuot (Lev 23:15-17). They symbolize those who have been through much refining and purifying and are ready to be part of a firstfruits company in the earth, jewels which have been cut and polished to fit into a crown to glorify the King.
All of creation is groaning, waiting for the manifestation or revealing of the sons of God. The labour has reached the time of breakthrough - the crowning of the Head and the way is opening up; the headstone is being brought forth with shouts of 'favour, favour!'. Halleluyah! So arise and shine for the glory of the Lord is risen upon you!
(Isaiah 62:2 KJV) And the Gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory: and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the LORD shall name.Thou shalt also be a crown of glory in the hand of the LORD, and a royal diadem in the hand of thy God.
The set time to favour Zion has come!