The Mystery of the Trees


WE WALKED THROUGH a garden of trees.

“Today,” said the teacher, “we open up the mystery of two trees. In Genesis it is written that inside the Garden of Eden grew the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, the one tree, the fruit of which man was not to partake.”

“But man did partake,” I replied.

“Yes, and through that partaking came sin and death. Through that one tree came the fall of man. Now why did the Messiah die?” he asked.

“To bring salvation.”

“And to what end?”

“To end sin and death.”

“And to undo what?”

“The fall.”

“And on what did He die?”

“A cross.”

“And of what was the cross made?”


“And what is wood?”

I paused for a moment before answering.

“A tree . . . The cross is a tree.”

“The cross is the second tree,” he said. “Through the first tree, sin begins. Through the second tree, sin ends. Through the first tree man fell.”

“And through the second tree,” I said, “man rises.”

“Through a living tree came death.”

“And through a dead tree,” I said, “comes life.”

“In the partaking of the first tree, we die.”

“And in the partaking of the second tree, we come alive.”
“And as God placed the first tree in the center of the garden, so He has placed the second tree in the center of the world, in the center of the age, so that all can partake of it and find life. And the more you partake of this tree . . . the more alive you become.”

The Mission: The second tree must be the center. Make it the center of your life and center everything else around it. Partake and live of its fruit.

Genesis 2:16–17; Galatians 3:13

The Tree

Excerpt From: Jonathan Cahn. “The Book of Mysteries.” iBooks.

The Sacred Stone and Scripture Revealing Mysteries…


The Lamb and the 144,000 on Mount Zion

1Then I looked, and behold, the Lamb was standing on Mount Zion, and with Him one hundred and forty-four thousand, having His name and the name of His Father written on their foreheads. 2And I heard a voice from heaven, like the sound of many waters and like the sound of loud thunder, and the voice which I heard was like the sound of harpists playing on their harps. 3And they sang a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders; and no one could learn the song except the one hundred and forty-four thousand who had been purchased from the earth. 4These are the ones who have not been defiled with women, for they have kept themselves chaste. These are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever He goes. These have been purchased from among men as first fruits to God and to the Lamb. 5And no lie was found in their mouth; they are blameless.
Vision of the Angel with the Gospel 6And I saw another angel flying in midheaven, having an eternal gospel to preach to those who live on the earth, and to every nation and tribe and tongue and people; 7and he said with a loud voice, “Fear God, and give Him glory, because the hour of His judgment has come; worship Him who made the heaven and the earth and sea and springs of waters.”

Excerpt From: The Lockman Foundation. “New American Standard Bible.” iBooks.



WE SAT ON the floor of a dark room, illuminated only by the light of a solitary oil lamp. In the teacher’s hand was a small parchment.

“In the New Covenant Scriptures it’s recorded that at the end of the Passover Seder, the Last Supper, Messiah and His disciples sang a song. What song would they have sung?”

“How could we possibly know?”

“The word used to describe the song is the Greek humnos. Humnos was used to speak of the Psalms of Israel. And from ancient times it was ordained that the Passover Seder would always end with the singing of songs, specifically, the Psalms, and a specific set of Psalms called the Hallels. The Passover would end with the singing of the last of these, Psalm 118.”

“And is Psalm 118 significant?”

“Extremely so,” said the teacher as he began to read from the parchment. “It is this . . . Psalm 118, that contains the words, ‘The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone.’ The Hebrew word used for rejected also means despised and abhorred. Who is the rejected stone?”

“Messiah,” I answered, “‘He was despised and rejected of men . . .’”

“Two thousand years ago that song was sung all over Jerusalem, the song of the rejected stone. And it would be fulfilled on that very Passover. It was right after Messiah and His disciples finished singing the song that they went to the Mount of Olives where He would be arrested, despised, and abhorred—and finally cast away at the crucifixion, the epitome of rejection. But what also does it say? ‘The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone.’ So the despised and rejected man on the cross would end up becoming the cornerstone of faith . . . of civilization . . . of history . . . and of the world. Think about it . . . kings and queens, generals and emperors, bow down to a man nailed to a cross. The most pivotal, world-changing life on this planet is that of a crucified Jewish Rabbi . . . the stone of rejection. And that crucified Rabbi becomes the cornerstone of history. In God, the object of man’s hatred becomes the center of His love, and the object of man’s despising becomes the vessel of His glory. How amazing is that? And it was all there that night of the Passover Seder . . . in the song of the stone.”

The Mission: Make Him who is the Cornerstone, the cornerstone of all you do today. Build everything else from that foundation.

Psalm 118:22–23; Isaiah 53:3; Hebrews 13:12–13; 1 Peter 2:4–8

The Rosh Pinah

Excerpt From: Jonathan Cahn. “The Book of Mysteries.” iBooks.

The Most Holy Descending to the Depths of Darkness


WE STOOD AT the bottom of an empty cistern. I had asked the teacher to show me as I had never seen one before. We were now ready to leave.

“Look,” said the teacher, “right now that’s our only hope.”

He was pointing to a wooden ladder, the same ladder we had climbed down to get to where we were. “Without that ladder,” he said, “we’d be stuck here at the bottom. And what if it only went halfway up to the top?”
“If it didn’t reach the top, it wouldn’t do us any good.”
“And if the ladder started from the top but only went halfway down?”“If it didn’t reach the bottom, it wouldn’t do us any good either. We’d be stuck here either way.”

“What about getting into heaven?” he asked. “How high is heaven above the earth? How great is the distance that separates man from God, and sin from the Most Holy? How long would that ladder have to be . . . to get you into heaven?”

“As high and as long as the distance that separates man from God, a ladder between heaven and earth.”

“It was that ladder that Jacob saw in his dream, a ladder from heaven to earth. It was the shadow of Messiah, that which joins heaven to earth, and God to man. It can only work if the ladder touches both ends, the highest height with the lowest depth. So the Most High had to descend to the most low of depths so that those in the lowest depths could ascend to the highest heights.

The Most Heavenly had to become earthly so that those who were earthly could become heavenly. And the Most Holy had to join Himself to the most unholy, the Holy One joined to the lowest of sins, the Most Sacred to the most profane . . . So God descended to the deepest depths of darkness, to the lowest rung of degradation and judgment.”

“The bottom of Jacob’s ladder,” I said, “that which joins earth to heaven . . .”
“Therefore,” said the teacher, “no matter how low you find yourself, no matter how lost you are, no matter how sinful, no matter how hopeless, no matter how far from God you are . . . no matter how deep the pit you find yourself in . . . look for the ladder . . . and it will be there to take you out. The ladder will be there with its one end touching the bottom of your lowest depths, and the other end touching the Most High.”

The Mission: Wherever you are there is a ladder connecting you to the Most High. Find the first rung of heaven’s ladder and take it.

Genesis 28:10–17; John 1:51

The Heaven and Earth Continuum

Loving Good Works 

Amos 5:14-15 “Seek good and not evil, that you may live; and thus may the Lord God of hosts be with you, just as you have said! Hate evil, love good, and establish justice in the gate! Perhaps the Lord God of hosts may be gracious to the remnant of Joseph.”

As I read this scripture I am brought into a new light that brings to my attention the meaning of life. I am brought into a light that promotes good works and faith, doing away with evil. The entire Bible speaks about doing away with evil thoughts and works, as we are to be seeking to establish each and every day…If we seek God through Christ then we will be rewarded with the calm peaceful nature of the Holy Spirit.

Of all the challenges that we face as humans, overcoming the evil of this world is possibly the greatest challenge of all. By dwelling upon peaceful resolution we are able to establish ways of living that direct us away from violence and anger. I see that violence and anger are so predominant in our world that sometimes it is hard to cope. The love of God overcomes both and is to be at the center of our heart.

When we face challenging situations in life we are brought into new understanding. My new understanding has come from events that I have experienced and will experience over the course of my life. I have learned how to not make the same mistakes twice and to live a life of love and promise. Love and promise are so great to instill the hope and reassurance that we need to make it through life.

My entire life now revolves around family and close friends. Life is about relationships and by making relationships loving and positive we are doing what God would have us to do. The more relationships that we can have that are true and loyal, the more promise we may attain.

Life is not perfect, but by relating to one another we begin to find peace in life.


THERE HAD BEEN centuries of silence,” said the teacher, “in between the Hebrew Scriptures and the New Testament. To many, it seemed as if God had forgotten His promises to Israel. Do you know what ended that silence? The first earthly event recorded in the New Testament?”

“The birth of Messiah?”

“No,” he said. “It was an event concerning a priest named Zachariah. When Zachariah was young, he married a woman named Elizabeth. Undoubtedly they had dreamed of having a child, but were never able to. They were both now old. Time had taken away their youth and their dream. But while Zachariah was performing his priestly service in the Temple of Jerusalem, an angel of God appeared to him and told him that Elizabeth would, in her old age, give birth to a child. So God would fulfill the ancient hopes of Israel through the fulfilling of an old couple’s long lost hopes for a baby. But behind it was a mystery. Zachariah’s real name was Zicharyah. Zicharyah means God has remembered. Elizabeth’s real name was Elishevah. Elishevah means the oath of God. Zicharyah and Elishevah were joined together in marriage. So God has remembered was joined to the oath of God.

The very joining of the two lives created a prophetic message, God has remembered the oath of God. A sign to Israel that God had not forgotten His promise, but was about to fulfill it. And when God remembers His oath, then the oath bears life. So Elishevah will bear a child who will be known as John the Baptist. But his real name was Yochanan.”

“And what does Yochanan mean?”

“The grace of God. God’s remembrance of His oath causes to be born the grace of God.”

“The grace of salvation, the very thing that would come forth out of God’s fulfilling of His oath.”

“And when Zicharyah gave praise to God, he would declare that God had performed the miracle ‘to remember His holy covenant, the oath which He swore to our father Abraham.’ Never forget this,” said the teacher. “No matter how long it takes, whether centuries or moments, God will never forget His promise and never break His Word. And out of the broken, the barren, and the impossible, the grace of God will be born.”

The Mission: The Scriptures are filled with promises for His people. Take one today. Hold to it. Live in light of it.

Leviticus 26:40–42; Luke 1:4–17, 72–73

The Angel and the Priest


To See the Tree of Life…The Face of God…A Hidden Realm

The Face of God

To attempt to answer the question of “Why do bad things happen?” Sin, whether it is direct or indirect, is the answer for why bad things happen in the world. It is hard to understand why a God who loves us so much would allow us to suffer from indirect sin, but we must be aware that we are born into it however you choose to look at it. We will face battles in life, but faith stands over it all, and knowing that all we see around us is not all that exist is where we find closure and understanding.

Jesus did not ever give a philosophical answer to the problem of pain, but he did give an existential answer. Although we do not know why a particular bad thing occurs, we can learn how God feels about it. Jesus gives God a face, and that face is streaked with tears.

In Jesus, God presents a face. Anyone who wonders about the suffering and groaning on this planet need only to take a look at his face. James, Peter, and John had followed Jesus long enough for his facial expressions to be permanently etched on their minds. By watching Jesus’ expressions to a hemorrhaging woman, a grieving centurion, a widow’s dead son, and epileptic boy, and old blind man, they learned how God felt about suffering.

To know how Jesus felt about family members who die, we can begin to understand by Jesus weeping after his friend, Lazarus, died. This gives us an idea of how God feels about those close to us, our blood, who die.


We can also see how Jesus felt when he looked out over Jerusalem and realized the fate awaiting that fabled city. He sighed at one point in Matthew 23:37, using an image he must have drawn from rural Galilee. “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers chicks under her wings, but you were not willing.”

After the fire races through a barn, a farmer may find the corpses of scorched hens, wings outstretched, lying on the barn floor. The mother has protected them from the fire, sacrificing her own life in the process. That is what Jesus yearned for—to take the punishment vicariously for his people.

When Jesus Christ faced pain, he responded just as anyone else does. He did not pray in the garden, “O Lord, I am so grateful that you have chosen me to suffer on your behalf. I rejoice in the privilege!” No, he experienced sorrow, fear, abandonment, and something approaching desperation. “If it is possible, may this cup be taken from me.” And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.

In the words of Isaiah 52–53, we see a vivid account written before Jesus’ birth.

Who has believed our message? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? For He grew up like a tender shoot, and like a root out of parched ground; He has not stately form or majesty that we should look upon Him, nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.


He was despised and forsaken of men, a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; And like one from who men hide their face, He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. Surely, our grief He himself bore, and our sorrows He carried; Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But He was pierced through our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, and by His scourging we are healed. All of us like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; But the Lord has caused the iniquity of us all to fall upon Him. He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet He did not open His mouth; Like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, so He did not open His mouth…His grave was assigned with wicked men, yet He was with a rich man in His death, because He had done no violence, nor was there any deceit in His mouth. But the Lord was pleased to crush Him, putting Him to grief; If He would render Himself as a guilt offering, He will see His offspring, He will prolong His days, and the good pleasure of the Lord will prosper in His hand. As a result of the anguish of His soul, He will see it and be satisfied; By His knowledge the Righteous One, My Servant, will justify the many, as He will bear their iniquities. Therefore I will allot Him a portion with the great, and He will divide the booty with the strong; Because He poured out Himself to death, and was numbered with the transgressors; Yet He Himself bore the sin of many, and interceded for the transgressors.


Isaiah 53:1–7

Just as the tragedy of Good Friday was transformed into the triumph of Easter Sunday, one day all war, all violence, all injustices, all sadness will likewise be transformed. Then and only then will we be able to say, “O death where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?” Only then will the urgent question form the Old Testament resolve. Do we matter? Does God care? We must live in faith, aware that those final answers will lack a final answer until that decisive day when God does act spectacularly in Jesus’ second coming.

Matthew 13:44-46-The Message

44 “God’s kingdom is like a treasure hidden in a field for years and then accidentally found by a trespasser. The finder is ecstatic—what a find!—and proceeds to sell everything he owns to raise money and buy that field.



IT WAS ALMOST sundown. We were standing at the bottom of a high mountain. But the ascent was very gradual as the mountain was spread out over a vast area and connected to other mountains, part of a chain. At its base were the beginnings of several mountain paths, each diverging from the others.

“At the top of this mountain,” said the teacher, “is a flat, white, circular stone. Find it. When you get there, you’ll be standing on the summit. Find that stone, and then return to me.”

“But which of the paths do I take?” I asked.

“That’s the challenge,” he said. “I’ll be waiting here until you return.”

So I chose one of the many paths and began following it. It wasn’t long before the sky grew dark, and it became apparent that I was on the wrong path. I chose another, and another, until finally I realized I was heading downward. At that point I began shouting in the dark for the teacher. He shouted back. Following his voice, I made my way back to him at the base.

“So,” said the teacher, “I imagine you didn’t get there.”

“How could I have?” I replied. “I didn’t know which path to take.”

“You didn’t have to know,” he said. “You didn’t have to know anything . . . except one thing. You were too focused on which path to take, but that wasn’t the key. Remember when I shared with you about the Hebrew word aliyah? Had you applied that here, you would have succeeded. The key was the direction . . . up. The white stone was at the pinnacle. All you had to do was to choose the higher path, continuously. And if the path stopped ascending, then you choose the higher ground. And it would make no difference where you started from or on which side of the mountain. If you just followed this simple law, it would have led to the exact place at the pinnacle. Don’t forget this. It’s one of the most important secrets in your walk with God.

The pinnacle of the mountain represents God’s calling on your life, His specific will and exact purpose and plan for your life. How do you get there? You don’t have to know where it is. All you have to do is continually ascend, continually choose the higher path, the higher ground, the higher footstep. And no matter where you started from and no matter where you are now, you will end up in the exact, specific, appointed, and perfect will of God, at the summit, the pinnacle of God’s purposes for your life.”

The Mission: Today, focus only on one course, one path, one journey, one destination, and one direction—up. Aim to go higher with every step.

Psalms 24:3–6; 122; Proverbs 3:6; Philippians 3:14

Excerpt From: Jonathan Cahn. “The Book of Mysteries.” iBooks.

Understanding the Entirety of Biblical Relevance to a Garden…


IT WAS LATE afternoon. We were sitting inside one of the gardens of fruit trees.

“A question,” said the teacher. “What was God’s first act toward man after the creation?”
“To create woman?”
“Before that?”
“I don’t know.”
“It was to take him somewhere.”
“Into the garden.”

“‘The Lord God took the man and placed him in the Garden of Eden.’ God’s first act toward man was to bring him to a place of life, fruitfulness, and blessing. And when did God bring him into the garden?”

“On the sixth day.”

“Messiah died on the sixth day, Friday. And what happened to Him that day after the crucifixion, the work of redemption, was finished?”
“They took Him down from the cross and laid Him in the tomb.”

“But it wasn’t just any tomb,” said the teacher. “What do the Scriptures say of that place? ‘In the place where He was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden, a new tomb.’ It wasn’t just a tomb . . . It was a garden tomb . . . a tomb in a garden. On the sixth day God brought man into a garden. So on the sixth day man brought God into a garden, into a garden tomb.

A garden is a place of life, but a garden tomb is a place of death.

So God brought man into a place of life. But man brought God into a place of death. The Garden of Eden was a place of blessing. But the Garden Tomb was a place of sorrow. The Garden of Eden was the place of God’s creation.

The Garden Tomb was the place of man’s creation. So God brought man into the place of God’s blessings. But man brought God into the place of man’s curse. Why?

God allowed Himself to be brought to the place of our curse to give us the power to leave that place, that He might once more bring us to a place of life, and to a life of His blessings.”

The Mission: It is the way of the sacrifice and dying to self that leads into the garden. Choose to walk in that way and enter the blessings of the garden.

Genesis 2:15; Song of Solomon 6:2; Luke 23:43; John 19:41–42

The Sixth Day Revelation Mystery…

Excerpt From: Jonathan Cahn. “The Book of Mysteries.” iBooks.


IT DIDN’T HAPPEN often, but when it did, it was dramatic. It was a desert rain. The teacher came to my chamber just as it began. Together, we watched the downpour through my window.

“The rain brings life,” he said. “Without it, life would cease. This is especially true for the land of Israel, which was especially dependent on the outpourings of heaven. But there was another kind of outpouring in Israel.”

“What do you mean?” I asked.

“The Scriptures speak of an outpouring, not of water, but of the Spirit, the rain of the Spirit.”

“What’s the connection between the two, the Spirit and the rain?”

“The rain pours down from the sky and gives life to the land. The Spirit pours down from heaven and gives life to those who receive it. The outpouring of rain causes barren land to revive and become fruitful. The outpouring of the Spirit causes barren lives to revive and become fruitful.”

“And this outpouring . . . happened . . .”

“On the Day of Pentecost. The Spirit of God was poured out on Jerusalem, on the disciples. It is the outpouring that causes barren lives to bear fruit. It is the outpouring that causes barren lives to bear fruit. It is the outpouring that produced the Book of Acts and changed the history of the world.”

“Has there ever been another outpouring like it?”

“Not quite like it,” he said. “But there’s a mystery. You see, there wasn’t just one rain in Israel. There were two distinct rains, each with its own name. One was called the moreh, the former rain, and the other was called the malkosh, the latter rain. One came in autumn, and the other in spring . . . two rains . . . two outpourings.”

“So if there are two outpourings of rain in the land of Israel . . . then would it not also follow that there would be two such outpourings of the Holy Spirit in the age?”

“It would follow,” he said. “And in the Book of Joel, God promises to send both the former rains and the latter rains, and to pour out His Spirit in the last days……..

So then there must again be another outpouring. And as the former rains came upon the people of Israel, on Jewish believers and the world, so too will the latter rains. And as it was in the former outpouring, so in the latter, that which was barren will bear its fruit, and that which was dead will come alive again.”

The Mission: Seek the outpouring of His Spirit on your life to touch your dry ground and make it fruitful. Prepare and receive your latter rains.

Isaiah 44:3–4; Joel 2:23–29; Acts 2:17–18

The Mystery of the Rains…


WE WERE SITTING in the desert sand when I asked him a question.

“God is one. And God is three. Mathematically speaking,” I said, “I don’t see how it can work. One can never equal three and three can never equal one.”

At that, it was I who picked up a stick and began writing numbers in the sand.
“One plus one plus one equals three, not one.”

“And if it was one divided by three?” asked the teacher.
Again I wrote it out on the sand.

“One divided by three equals one-third, not one.”
“You’re right,” he said. “It doesn’t work. How could it?”
“I guess it can’t. So I should forget about trying to use equations.”
I lifted the stick to erase the numbers when he grabbed my hand to stop me.

“I didn’t say that. You just used the wrong equation. God is infinite. You can’t use that which is finite to comprehend the infinite.”

The teacher then took the stick and pointed it to the first equation. Next to every number he inscribed a symbol . . . the symbol of infinity.

“Now let’s try it again. One infinity plus one infinity plus one infinity equals three infinities. How big is three infinities?”

“It’s infinite. It’s infinity.”

“Thus three infinities equal one infinity,” he replied. “Three equals one.”
At that, he pointed the stick to the second equation and did likewise, inserting again the symbol of infinity.

“One infinity divided by three equals one-third of infinity. And what is one-third of infinity? One-third of infinity is . . . infinity. When you speak of God, you’re speaking of the infinite. And one infinity and three infinities are equal. One-third of infinity and one infinity are likewise equal. So in the realm of God, the realm of the infinite, one does equal three and three does equal one. You can never fit the infinite inside the finite, and you can never fit the infinite inside the finite, and you can never fit God inside of your understanding. If you could, then He wouldn’t be God. Then your understanding would be God. But God, by definition, must be greater than your understanding. And this will set you free. You see, you don’t have to figure out God. But there is a way that the finite can understand the infinite.”


“When you believe!”

The Mission: Seek this day to live not limited by the limitations of your circumstances, problems, thoughts, and ways. Live by faith beyond them.

1 Kings 8:27; Isaiah 40:28; Romans 11:33

The Infinity Solution…

DAY 283


HE TOOK ME into the Chamber of Scrolls. There on the table was the scroll of the Torah rolled out to its end.

“Do you remember,” said the teacher, “what I told you about the most mysterious day of the Hebrew year, Shemini Atzeret, the Gathering of the Eighth Day?”

“The last day of the sacred year, the day after the end . . . the day that represents the beginning of eternity.”

“Yes. And do you know what is done on that day? The Torah scroll, which has been continually unrolled and read on every Sabbath of the year, comes to its end. Then begins the sacred rolling back of all that has been unrolled throughout the year . . . A fascinating thing,” said the teacher. “When you read the prophecies concerning the end of ages, you find the image of the scroll and the act of rolling it up.

In Isaiah it is written, ‘The heavens shall be rolled up like a scroll.’ And in the Book of Revelation, the same imagery reappears, ‘And the sky departed as a scroll when it is rolled up.’ And then at the end of Revelation concerning the end of the present order, it is written that before eternity, ‘earth and the heaven fled away.’ Heaven and earth depart; the old creation is gone. The scroll is finished, the story is ended, and the day after the end, Shemini Atzeret, the Eighth Day, the day of forever, begins.”

The teacher paused to look down at the scroll.

“And do you know what is read at the end of the scroll before it is rolled up?”

“The last words written on this scroll are about the journey’s end. Moses goes up the mountain to catch his first glimpse of the Promised Land, to leave his earthly existence, and to be with God. And the Israelites finish their journey through the wilderness. So Shemini Atzeret speaks of the day when our journeying through the wilderness will end, the completion of our earthly existence, and the passing away of this world.

It tells us that we must always leave the the old before we can enter into the new. And it reminds us that this life is not the destination, but the journey to the destination.

So live your life and every moment of your life in light of that, in light of the end, in light of the day when the old will flee away, and of your first glimpse of that of which you had only dreamed . . . as the scroll is rolled up together.”

The Mission: What is it in your life that you must bring to an end in order to enter the new that God has for you? Roll up the scroll today.

Deuteronomy 34; Isaiah 34:4; Revelation 6:14; 20:11; 22

The Alpha and Omega Scroll…

Excerpt From: Jonathan Cahn. “The Book of Mysteries.” iBooks.

The TISHRI Revelation…


THE TEACHER TOOK me around the back of the common hall where there was a blank canvas on a wooden easel and, to its right, a second wooden easel on which rested a beautiful and intricate painting of a landscape.

“Your assignment,” he said, “is to copy this painting.”

“But I don’t know how to paint.”

“That’s the challenge,” he replied. “I’ll be back in a few hours.”
For the rest of the afternoon I tried my best to reproduce what I saw on the canvas. But for all my efforts, the result looked like something a preschooler would have done. When the teacher returned, there was a long silence as we both stared at my work.
“You won’t forget this lesson,” he said. “You were trying to reproduce the work of a master. Most of those in the kingdom do the same thing.”

“Copy paintings?”

“Try to reproduce the righteousness of God. They know what’s right and good and holy. They know what a godly life looks like. And they try to live it. The goal is worthy. But the way they go about achieving that goal is wrong.

They’re doing what you just did, trying by their own abilities to reproduce the work of the Master. And to do that is to compete with God. And if you could do that, you wouldn’t need God. Only God can do the works of God. And a holy life is the work of God.”

“Then how can we do it,” I asked, “if God is the only one who can?”
“Then that’s the key. God must do it. And you must let Him.

Key Point: Imagine if, instead of trying to copy this painting, you were given the artist’s heart and mind, his skills, and his spirit. Then it wouldn’t be a struggle, nor would it be a copy. It would be as if the master was painting through you. Therein lies the key.

Don’t compete with God by trying to copy His  works. But learn the secret of letting God work His works in everything you do. If you live with the heart of God, you’ll do the works of God. If you live by the Spirit of God, you fulfill the will of God. Move in His moving. Love in His loving. Live in His living, and be in His being. As for that painting you did . . .”

“It’s a mess,” I said. “And I think I’ll keep it . . . as a reminder.”

“Live by the Spirit of the Master,” said the teacher, “and that which you do will be a masterpiece.”

The Mission: Today, instead of focusing on the works of God, seek to live in the heart and Spirit of God—and you will accomplish the works of God.

Ezekiel 36:27; Galatians 5:16, 22–25; Philippians 1:6; Hebrews 13:21

The Poem of God….


WE RETURNED TO the garden where we first saw the man who was trimming the branches.

“Do you remember what you saw here?” asked the teacher.
“The man trimming the branches,” I answered. “The pruning.”

“And what is the purpose of pruning?”
“Pruning removes the branches from a tree that hinder its fruitfulness or its well-being, to allow it to become as fruitful as possible.”

“Pruning, therefore, is critical to living a fruitful life in God, so God prunes the lives of His children. But in order to live a fruitful life, you must also be part of the process. You must learn also how to prune yourself.”
At that, he led me over to a tree in need of trimming. He handed me two of the gardener’s tools, a pruning hook and a pair of pruning shears.
“Do you see this?” he said. “It’s a diseased branch. If it’s not cut off, it will harm the tree. Any action, course, or habit of sin in your life is a diseased branch and will hinder you from living a fruitful life in God. Prune it off.”

So I did.

“And this here is a dead branch, once fruitful but now detrimental to the tree’s health. Any action or expenditure of energy in your life that produces no fruit, even if it once did, is a dead branch. You must prune it off.”

So I did.

“And these branches here are hindering the tree by blocking sunlight from the tree’s most fruitful branches. So in your life, anything you do that keeps you from receiving from God, from dwelling in His presence and His Word, is a hindering branch.” He pointed downward. “And these branches here are too low. They stand for all the low pursuits, indulgences, and actions that drain away your time and energy from the higher things to which God has called you. Cut them off. Cut them all off,” he said.

“From my life?”

“Absolutely. But from the tree as well, as an object lesson. Cut them all off. It will not harm the tree, but help it. So it is with your life. By giving up, you will gain. Make it a continual practice, and you will become spiritually healthy, strong, great, and fruitful. Prune thyself . . . and you will bear much fruit.”

The Mission: Today, identify in your life the dead branches, the diseased, the hindering, the wasteful, and the low—and cut them off. Prune thyself.

Mark 1:35; 10:29–30; John 15:1–5

The Secrets of Pruning I–III…


THE TEACHER LED me into one of the smaller rooms within the Chamber of Scrolls.
“Tishri,” he said, “is the most intense of Hebrew months . . . the month that closes the sacred Hebrew year. And if the sacred Hebrew year holds the mystery of the age, then the closing month of the sacred year, Tishri, will hold the mystery to the closing of the age. And could it be that Tishri also holds the mystery to the closing of God’s Word itself?”

“The closing of the Bible? The Book of Revelation?”

“Yes, could the month of Tishri hold the mystery of Revelation?”
At that he retrieved one of the scrolls and unrolled it on the wooden stand.
“The Book of Revelation,” he said, pointing to the scroll. “Tishri is the seventh month of the sacred year, seven, the number of completion. And what do we find in the Book of Revelation? It’s saturated with the number seven. And how does Tishri, the seventh month, open up?”

“With the Feast of Trumpets?”

“‘And I saw the seven angels,’ said the teacher as he read from the scroll, ‘who stand before God, and to them were given seven trumpets. ‘ 

“What do we see in the Book of Revelation? The Feast of Trumpets. And what else is Tishri? Yom Kippur, the Day of Judgment. And what do we see in Revelation? ‘The hour of His judgment has come.’ And as man and God stand face-to-face on Yom Kippur, so too in the Book of Revelation. In the month of Tishri, God is proclaimed King. So too in Revelation. And in Tishri comes the Feast of Tabernacles, the greatest of celebrations, the kingdom feast, and the time of tabernacling with God in the Holy City. So Revelation closes with God’s kingdom on earth, celebration, and God tabernacling with His people in the Holy City, as it is written, ‘Behold the tabernacle of God is with men.’”

“You forgot one,” I said. “Tishri closes with Shemini Atzeret, the mystery day.”

“Yes,” said the teacher, “the day that speaks of eternity. And so Revelation closes with the same day, the day of eternity . . . ‘and they shall reign forever and ever.’ You see, the purposes of God have only perfect endings. And so for those who let Him write their story, the ending is the same . . . perfect. Their ending . . . is heaven.”

The Mission: In the end, we will appear in the light of God with nothing hidden. Prepare for that day. Remove all darkness. Live now in total light.

Leviticus 23:23–44; Revelation 8:2; 14:7; 19:16; 20:4; 21:3; 22:5

The Lion of Tishri….


THE TEACHER WAS holding a purple cloth and running it through his fingers as if inspecting it. He then placed it in my hands.

“The color purple,” he said. “It was woven throughout the Tabernacle, on the veils and curtains, even in the garments of the priests. Now look at the cloth I gave you. It’s purple. It should be made up of purple threads, but it’s not. If you look closely, you won’t find any.”

So I examined it. And as he had said, I was unable to find in the cloth a single purple thread. Instead, it was made up of tiny blue and red threads finely woven together.
“Purple is the joining of blue and red. And if you looked at the veils of the Tabernacle, you would find the colors blue, purple, and red. The colors appear in the instructions for building the Tabernacle over and over, the same three colors and in the same order ‘blue, purple, and scarlet.’”


“The Tent of Meeting was the place of the joining, the reconciliation, the meeting of two realities, God and man.”

“And so the colors represented God and man?”

“Blue is the color of the sky, the heavens . . . representing the heavenly, God. So the blue is first.”

“And the color red . . . scarlet?”

“In Hebrew, the word for man is adam. Adam comes from the Hebrew word for red. Red is the color of the Middle Eastern earth from which man came. And scarlet red is the symbol of sin and guilt. Red is the color of man . . . So then what is purple? Purple is the joining of blue and red. And so it speaks of the joining of God to man, heaven joined to earth. But for there to be purple, it must be a total joining . . . the joining of all that is holy to all that is not, all of God to all that is us . . . to all that is you. . . so totally joined that God will appear as sin. And as that total joining drew near, the Heavenly One was beaten and mocked and made to wear a crown of thorns . . . And then He was covered with a with a robe. And do you know what kind of robe it was? It was a purple robe . . . a purple robe to cover the One in whom heaven and earth, God and man, blue and red . . . become completely one . . . purple.”

The Mission: Today, join all that is red to all that is blue. Join all that is ungodly to God and God to the ungodly—so much so, it becomes purple.

Exodus 26:31; John 19:1–6; Philippians 4:5–7; 1 Timothy 1:15

The Purple Mystery I–IV…

Excerpt From: Jonathan Cahn. “The Book of Mysteries.” iBooks.


“PSALMS 35…”

Prayer for Rescue from Enemies.

A Psalm of David.

1Contend, O LORD, with those who contend with me; Fight against those who fight against me. 2Take hold of buckler and shield And rise up for my help. 3Draw also the spear and the battle-axe to meet those who pursue me; Say to my soul, “I am your salvation.” 4Let those be ashamed and dishonored who seek my life; Let those be turned back and humiliated who devise evil against me. 5Let them be like chaff before the wind, With the angel of the LORD driving them on.

6Let their way be dark and slippery, With the angel of the LORD pursuing them. 7For without cause they hid their net for me; Without cause they dug a pit for my soul. 8Let destruction come upon him unawares, And let the net which he hid catch himself; Into that very destruction let him fall.

9And my soul shall rejoice in the LORD; It shall exult in His salvation. 10All my bones will say, “LORD, who is like You, Who delivers the afflicted from him who is too strong for him, And the afflicted and the needy from him who robs him?”

11Malicious witnesses rise up; They ask me of things that I do not know. 12They repay me evil for good, To the bereavement of my soul. 13But as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth;

I humbled my soul with fasting, And my prayer kept returning to my bosom. 14I went about as though it were my friend or brother; I bowed down mourning, as one who sorrows for a mother.

15But at my stumbling they rejoiced and gathered themselves together; The smiters whom I did not know gathered together against me, They slandered me without ceasing. 16Like godless jesters at a feast, They gnashed at me with their teeth.

17Lord, how long will You look on? Rescue my soul from their ravages, My only life from the lions. 18I will give You thanks in the great congregation; I will praise You among a mighty throng.

19Do not let those who are wrongfully my enemies rejoice over me; Nor let those who hate me without cause wink maliciously. 20For they do not speak peace, But they devise deceitful words against those who are quiet in the land. 21They opened their mouth wide against me; They said, “Aha, aha, our eyes have seen it!”

22You have seen it, O LORD, do not keep silent; O Lord, do not be far from me.

23Stir up Yourself, and awake to my right And to my cause, my God and my Lord.

24Judge me, O LORD my God, according to Your righteousness, And do not let them rejoice over me. 25Do not let them say in their heart, “Aha, our desire!” Do not let them say, “We have swallowed him up!”

26Let those be ashamed and humiliated altogether who rejoice at my distress; Let those be clothed with shame and dishonor who magnify themselves over me.

27Let them shout for joy and rejoice, who favor my vindication; And let them say continually, “The LORD be magnified, Who delights in the prosperity of His servant.”

28And my tongue shall declare Your righteousness And Your praise all day long.”

Excerpt From: The Lockman Foundation. “New American Standard Bible.” iBooks.