At the conclusion of this teaching, there is a diagnostic questionnaire that may be of interest to you. In this article, we are not discussing heaven as a physical location or the natural locations of earth, atmosphere, or a place we often refer to where we go when we leave this earth. We are looking at the heavens that Strong’s dictionary calls “realms of spirit” in our experience in God. First the natural and then the spiritual.
What would it be like if we could have a personal conversation with Paul today? Would he say, “I was caught up to the 3rd heaven, and I saw things that were unlawful for me to talk about then, but now, you are able to experience them. I was born out of time. I did not live in the time frame I saw when I was caught up to the 3rd realm of God’s Spirit. I had prophetic insight into what was happening in the realm of the Spirit in your world today”. I think it is very possible this is exactly what Paul would say.
We are living in the time Paul saw, so we are able today, to look into what he experienced! He saw the 3rd heaven in the “progressive” revelation of God within us. It can now be understood by those who are willing to go on to “know the Lord”. There is obviously a 1st and 2nd heaven, or there could not be a 3rd. Paul had experienced the 1st and 2nd heavens prior to this unveiling by the Holy Spirit.
Hosea 6:2-3 After those days will he revive us: IN THE THIRD DAY he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight. Then shall we know, “if we follow on to know the LORD: his going forth is prepared as the morning: and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth. (Both rains together-there is a greater anointing than the Pentecostal rain – thank God as that anointing did not get the job done).
Concerning spiritual matters, what day are we in? We are in the 7th day from Adam and the 3rd day from Christ. Both 3 and 7 are perfect numbers. So, in this article, we are addressing the 3rd day from Christ.
1st Peter 3:8 But, do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.
Luke 13:32 “Go tell that fox, Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures today and tomorrow, and the 3rd day I shall be PERFECTED”. (Speaking of his body, this is very very profound.)
Bible dictionaries define heaven as “A realm of Spirit”. When we became one Sspirit with the Lord, heaven came to live in our spirit man. I use Ss because it is the best way I can think of to depict what happened to us when we received Jesus.
1st Corinthians 6:17 But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him.
Paul said he experienced the 3rd heaven/realm of Spirit; this is simply an example of 3 realms of experience that manifest through our Sspirit to our soul and ultimately to our body! This concept may be difficult for some to grasp, but if you examine your walk with Christ, you will indeed realize, this has been your experience if you have followed on to know the Lord.
Let’s examine the 3 realms we are teaching in this article.
Let’s begin by looking at the Old Testament as a foreshadow of our experience in Christ. The Israelites celebrated 7 yearly feasts, 3 of which were known as “The 3 Main Feasts of the Lord”. Throughout the Old Testament, we find our experiences in Christ are “concealed” evidences within its pages. This evidence is called “types, shadows, symbols or signs”. The New Testament “reveals” this evidence to us outwardly as we continue to grow in our relationship to know Him. In fact, oftentimes, it is our experiences that opens us up to see the foreshadows in the Old Testament. It opens a lot of the meaning of Old Testament scripture that before, never made much sense. This is true concerning the 3 Main Feasts of the Lord that the Israel people celebrated. They are natural signs that point to 3 spiritual realities in our experiences in God.
So, let’s look at our experiences that are defined by the Bible. In our first Bible experience, we discovered the Way, and yielded to God by changing our lord (self) to Jesus (Lord of our life now). This is when we became one Sspirit with Him. We were translated out of the kingdom of darkness into the Kingdom of God’s dear Son. This happened in our spirit and is a spiritual experience fulfilling the first Main feast of the Lord: Passover .
In our 2nd Bible experience, we became acquainted with Acts 2:4, and Jesus filled us with His Spirit. We were given a soul-cleansing Helper, in a life changing moment, as God, by His Spirit, revealed Himself as the Truth. This happened in our soul and is a spiritual experience fulfilling the second Main feast of the Lord: Pentecost
So, the first feast of the Lord celebrated by the Israelites is called Passover. It is found in Exodus 12:11-14; the second Main feast was called Pentecost or feasts of weeks. It is found in Exodus 23:16. Passover represented the escape from Egypt for the Israelites. Egypt is a type of the world, which is a sign that we are to leave the worldly ways when we receive Christ and follow on to know Him. A cataclysmic change happened and now we don’t want to run our own lives.
When the Israelites left Egypt, they experienced the wilderness where they went round and round the same mountains. If we are honest with ourselves, it is a lot like the Pentecostal realm where we experience the same wanderings, around and around the same mountains. God has taken us the same way He took the Israelites; by way of the Red Sea that He might put a bit in our mouth and turn us whichever way He desires. This is a needed preparation for the 3rd Main feast. A cataclysmic change happened again. This time the enemy of our soul reared his head and began to pursue us at a greater pace. The glory of the knowledge of the Lord will fill the whole earth.
Anyone who is honest with themselves knows that the 2nd realm of Spirit was not enough to accomplish the vision I am setting before us today. We need more, and there is more to come! Let us follow on to know the Lord that we may be prepared to declare His generation.
I entered Pentecost 48 years ago. I have never looked back. There is a burning in my heart to know Him in ALL His glory. As I became acquainted with Him, my understanding of these realms of Spirit have been more beneficial to me in rightly dividing the word of God, than any other way of learning the scriptures. I developed a questionnaire for myself that I used to identify my progress in knowing Him. Perhaps it will help you also.
So, I took all 3 realms and from my own experience, listed some of the things we experience in Passover and Pentecost. Concerning the 3rd feast, I listed some of the things I have experienced since that realm opened up to me in 1997, but because it has not fully come, much of it is prophetic insight. It will be fascinating in the days to come to keep an eye on this questionnaire as the 3rd feast continues to unfold in our understandings.
1. Passover – 1st realm of heaven/spiritual experience in God
2. Pentecost – 2nd realm of heaven/spiritual experience in God
3. Tabernacles – 3rd realm of heaven/spiritual experience in God
As soon as you grasp an understanding of the above, you will understand the rest of this diagnostic chart. Happy diagnosing!
Colossians 13:5 Examine yourselves, where you are in the faith; prove your own self.
We use numbers 1,2 and 3 to represent Passover, Pentecost, and Tabernacles. If you can, write each of the following on paper so you can refer to it as you continue on to “know Him.” Check off each one that you have experienced.
1. The Way
2. The Truth
3. The Life
1. Natural light
Depicted by the tabernacle of Moses in the outer court, which faced east, catching the rays of natural sunlight – foreshadow of our walk with the Christ of Passover.
Depicted by the tabernacle of Moses in the 2nd room. Still not the real Light. But enough to keep us encouraged to follow on to know the Lord.
3. God Himself
Fullness of Light – Depicted by the tabernacle of Moses in the 3rd room. In this realm of Spirit, we will eventually know Him and see Him face to face for we shall be like Him.
Revelation 21-22-23 And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it…And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.
1. Lambs – Babes
2. Sheep – Young men
3. Ewes – Mature ones
John 21:15-17 Jesus said to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, do you love me more than these? He said unto him, Yes, Lord: you know that I love you. He said to him, Feed my LAMBS. He said to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, do you love me? He said to Him, yes Lord: you know that I love you. He said to him, Feed my SHEEP. He said to him the third time, do you love me? And he said to him, you know that I love you. Jesus said to him, Feed my EWES: Mature ones! (Lamsa translation) (My favorite)!
WHERE WE ARE AFFECTED BY EACH FEAST
1. In our Spirit – the Spirit is translated into the Kingdom of His dear Son
2. In our Soul – the Soul is transformed by the renewing our mind
3. In our Body – the Body is to be considered dead, awaiting resurrection
1. Salvation experience
2. Holy Spirit experience
3. Dwelling in Fullness
1st Peter 2:2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby.
John 6:31 Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat. Our wilderness is in the Pentecost experience.
3. Hidden manna
Revelation 2:17a He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, will I give to eat of the hidden manna.
1st Corinthians 13:13 And now faith, hope, charity, these three: but the greatest of these is charity.
1. He carries me – with wings of eagles
2. I run with Him – and do not become weary
3. I walk with Him – and do not faint
Isaiah 40:31 But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk and not faint.
WILL OF GOD
Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is good, and acceptable and perfect will of God.
When we consider the very beginning, God looked at what He had created and made. Then He said, “It is very good”. Why didn’t He say, “It is perfect”? His purpose for humanity was not accomplished at creation. He purposed to ultimately make humanity perfect.
1. Lion: People
2. Bear: Devil
3. Uncircumcised Philistine: SELF
1st Samuel 17:36 Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one of them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living God.
“Enemies” is my personal favorite. When I attended a church that ate only from the Passover meal, there was never a mention of a devil. People were enemies of one another. You know… What color shall we order for the new carpet can be a total war. No one rebuked the devil.
When I attended a church that ate from the Passover meal, but also added food from the Pentecost feast, EVERYTHING was the devil, even admitting fear of the devil.
When I added some food from the 3rd feast, the devil found no place in my thinking, and Father took His rightful place in my life. “Self” became the real enemy. David fought the lion first and won; then he fought the bear; after that he subdued the giant. All three enemies have to be overcome in our personal lives. What a great story depicting this reality. You will read in the word those giants were in the promised land that had to be subdued. This is the feast that gets rid of the giants in our lives that we may enter into all that God has for us.
1. Baptized “in” the name
2. Baptized “by” the name
3. Become the name
Matthew 28:19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them “in” the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Acts 19:5 When they heard this, they were baptized “in” the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Mark 1:7-8 And preached, saying there cometh one mightier than I after me, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to stoop down and unloose. I indeed have baptized you with water; but he will baptize you with the Holy Ghost.
1st John 3:2 Beloved, now we are the sons of God and it doth not yet appear what we shall be; but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
NOTE: Name means: Character and Authority
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.
John 16:13 But when He, the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatsoever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.
Philippians 4:10-11 For my determined purpose is that I may know Him, that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His Person more strongly, more clearly, and that I may in that same way come to know the power out-flowing from His resurrection which it exerts over believers, and that I may so share His sufferings as to be continually transformed in spirit into His likeness even to His death, in the hope that if possible I may attain to the spiritual and moral resurrection that lifts me out from among the dead even while in the body. (Amplified version)
1. Born of the Spirit
2. First-fruits of the Spirit
3. Fullness of the Spirit
John 4:13-14 Jesus answered “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life”.
Exodus 28:41 These you are to put on Aaron, your brother, and on his sons, putting oil on them, separating them, and making them holy, to do the work of priests to me. (This is a foreshadow that represents the time of the Holy Spirit – Pentecost)
John 2:10 Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine: and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse: but You have kept the good wine until now. Jesus saved the best wine for last. (Mature sons)
Matthew 13:3-8 Behold, a sower went forth to sow. And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the wayside, and the fowls came and devoured them up: Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth: And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up and choked them; But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some a hundredfold, some sixty-fold, some thirty-fold.
1. Born an heir
2. Earnestness of our Inheritance
3. Fullness of our inheritance
1. Galatians 4:1 Now I say that the heir, as long as he is a child, differs nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all.
2. Ephesians 1:13b-14 After that ye believed, ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise, which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession (our bodies), unto the praise of his glory. Philippians 3:14 I press forward to the PRIZE of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
3.Romans 8:19 For the earnest expectation of the creature waits for the manifestation of the sons of God.
Romans 8:23 And not only they, but we ourselves also, which have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.
The Israeli/Jewish understanding of adoption: When a father’s son became mature, his father took him into his family business. This was called adoption. When we accepted Christ, we were born into His family. The day comes when a mature son will be adopted into His Father’s business and the “knowledge” of the glory of the Lord will fill the earth, for they are His glory.
1. Prepare to receive Pentecost
2. Prepare to receive Tabernacles
3. Resurrection, and the setting of creation free until the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, fills the earth. (Revelation 20:4-6 And I saw thrones, and those who sat upon them, and judgment was given to them; and the souls of those who were beheaded for the witness of Jesus and for the word of God and who had not worshiped the wild beast, neither his image, nor had received his mark upon their foreheads or on their hand, lived and reigned with their Christ these thousand years.)
1. General Assembly and church of the firstborn
2. Heavenly Jerusalem
3. Mount Zion
1. Delivered from living in Egypt
2. Living in the wilderness
3. Living in the promised land
The above 19 examples are just a small portion of the understanding the scripture shares with us concerning our relationship with the Spirit of God in the 3 Main natural Feasts of the Lord that His people in the Old Testament celebrated, and I might say that they had no idea what they were celebrating from a spiritual viewpoint. As you study the word now, with these examples, you will start to notice other examples as you pay attention to your own growth in Christ, rightly dividing the word of truth.
The glory of the Feast of Tabernacles will make the glory of the other festivals seem pale in comparison. Even just beginning to taste the food on this table, it becomes obvious. Even, as in the natural, the third crop of the year for the Israelites produced much more food than the first two crops.
At the Passover, the Israelites remembered their time in Egypt. At tabernacles, they remembered their time in the wilderness. In the Promise land, God set them free and made them an independent people, living in their own homes, on their own land, instead of living like nomads during their desert wanderings. Which would you prefer? Is it better to live in Egypt, or the desert and feed on manna from heaven? Or would you rather live on the bounty of the Promised Land feeding on hidden manna? We would ALL choose the latter when we see it.
So, we press forward! WE are ever learning of the greater glory that lies ahead. We must not try to recreate the glory of the past moves of Almighty God. We follow Paul’s example to receive the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
God is so great in His fullness that even “the heaven of heavens” (the super-heaven containing all other heavens) cannot contain Him! (1st Kings 8:2) We can see by this, there are many heavens in God, even as there were other feasts among the major feasts in Israel. People pass through many, many of God’s heavens while experiencing God. The ones we have listed in this teaching speak of the 3 Main Feasts of the Lord that the Israelites celebrated, and that we experience within, opening it up to see just a little of the expansive riches of God.
There is so much to know and understand about the progressive revelation of our relationship with Father, that I feel to say, this is a very feeble attempt to make a stab at bringing forth some things that may or may not help you in your own personal journey to “KNOW HIM”. I encourage everyone to follow on to know the Lord as it can be challenging and sometimes fearful in the wonder of it all. But, I have this much I am sure of. It will be worth it!!!
I HOPE THIS HELPS SOMEONE: BONNIE