Thought for the Morning
The Scepter of Righteousness
A Message from Brother Billy Mellick.
While visiting Pastor John recently (Sunday 11/19/06), I was awakened from my sleep downstairs at 5:00 AM. The Spirit directed me to read (Hebrews 1:8), "But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever. A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of thy kingdom." After I read this scripture from Hebrews, the Spirit directed me to read the book of Esther.
In the book of Esther, (Chapter 5 vs.2), it is recorded, "And it was so, when the king saw Esther the queen standing in the court, that she obtained favour in his sight. And the king held out to Esther the golden scepter that was in his hand. So Esther drew near, and touched the top of the scepter."
Before Esther was Queen, and was allowed into the inner court to meet with king Ahasuerus, she was required to go through a long purification process so that she could enter into the presence of the king. It was from the king's own house that the items for the purification process were sent to the young maidens who were waiting to be brought in to the king (Esther 2:9). Each maiden had to purify herself for twelve months (Esther 2:12); six months were with oil of myrrh, and six months were with sweet odors. One could not go in to the king unless she had found favour in the king's sight; she was brought into an inner house and then had to be called by name (2:14). She then was brought to the king's chamberlain and was taught how to talk to the king, what was pleasing to wear in front of the king, how to behave around the king, and finally, how to approach the king. Essentially, each was taught proper royal manners, so she could keep favor with the king.
After the king summoned someone, she waited in an inner court for the king to motion for her to come to him by holding out his golden scepter (4:11). The penalty was death if one was found in the inner court without the king's permission. Once the king held out his scepter for one to come, she approached the king and knelt, and touched the top of the scepter (4:2). By doing this, she was, in a sense, telling the king she was his servant, faithful to his throne, and that she had obeyed the laws of his kingdom.
In the fall of 2001, I was praying on the floor during a meeting at Pastor John's house. The Spirit asked me a question, "What do you want?" It was a kind but firm feeling that came with this question. I replied to the Lord humbly, "I just want to live." Immediately, I started speaking in many different types of unknown tongues. Each tongue had a feeling with it; one tongue had love attached to it, one had joy, another the fear of the Lord, and still with another tongue I felt peace.
In my spirit, I was taken to a place where I felt the Spirit of God so strongly! I heard a voice in my heart that said, "You can not come here with any mud on your feet, or run in and out."
I realized I was in the Temple of the Lord. The Spirit started to take me on a tour in this temple. I noticed that on my right was a table full of bread . The voice spoke (in my mind), "I am the Bread of Life, eat as often as you would like; this bread will never run out."
Next, I was directed behind me where I saw a candle lamp burning. The voice spoke again and said, "This fire is to minister to men's souls; to be a lamp unto their path and a light unto their feet."
Again, the Spirit guided me directly behind a smoking incense altar. Here I had the most powerful and fearful feelings I have ever had to this date. The voice spoke again, "This is where you can come when we need to talk." I felt the most frightened here, but at the same time, I felt the safest.
I remembered, "This looks like the Old Testament tabernacle that Pastor John Clark has taught us in his Old Testament class." I did notice there was not a veil here as we were taught in Pastor John's class, and I remembered the scripture in (Matt. 27:51) when Jesus was crucified on the cross, "And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake and the rocks rent." After this, another scripture flooded my soul, "For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us" (Eph. 2:14).
Behind the incense altar, I saw two thrones. The one throne on my right was taller and greater then the other throne on my left. I saw two feet with a long white robe on the throne to my left. In my soul, I longed to fall at those feet, but I dared not because of the fear that was present all around me. I knew, the Lord knew, what I wanted to do (to fall at his feet), but I knew I needed permission.
I felt in my soul that the Lord was asking permission from the Throne on his left to grant my request. I saw the Lord's right hand motion for me to come, and then point at his feet as though that should be where I am to be. Everything felt orderly and in place.
I felt such a joy in my heart; I immediately ran from behind the altar, fell at his feet, and wrapped both of my arms around his feet and legs. I also felt the joy from the Lord when I fell at his feet. I felt his right hand on my right shoulder. Then, as soon as it happened, it was over.
When I came to myself, Pastor John was rocking me in his arms on his knees as I was lying on his lap. He was softly praying and singing to me. I felt like a little boy. I felt such love, I did not want to ever get up or let this time end. It took many hours to come to my senses over those feelings, but as I am writing this, those scenes are just as fresh as the day they happened.
Here are a few other things that I have thought about this:
There was a man in Esther's day named Haman. He hated the Jews with such a passion that he had implemented a plan to kill all the Jews in one day, at one time. He was promoted by king Ahasuerus and given many wonderful honors and a house by the king (but the king was not aware of the fact that Queen Esther was a Jew).
Haman became very proud, and bragged and boasted about what the king had done for him. Haman became so exalted that he flaunted himself around as the king's right hand man, and all along was putting his diabolical scheme in place (to kill the Jews).
As he was building the hangman's gallows to have a certain Jew killed named Mordecai, his plan was revealed to Queen Esther.
Some months previous to this, Mordecai had saved the king's life by exposing an assassination plot against king Ahasuerus. Now the king wanted to honor Mordecai, but Haman, in his pride, thought the king wanted to honor him. And, as the story goes, the same hangman's gallows that Haman built for Mordecai was used to put Haman to death.
We read in chapter five that Esther was still waiting for the king to summon her. Esther already had been Queen for five years, and yet she still humbled herself before the king and waited for his commandment to summon her.
The Spirit was telling me on the tour through the Temple that I would not be allowed to have mud on my feet, or run in and out of God's house as an unruly child does. I had to be clean (spiritually speaking) and would not be allowed to get mixed-up with the world by coming in and out of the place where God dwells; but if I keep myself clean, there is a place I can go where I can commune with God.
Jesus, when he ascended and was presented to the Father as the living sacrifice, cleaned the Heavenly temple. It was defiled by Satan, by Satan's pride. Jesus beheld Satan falling like lightning (Lk. 10:18) to the earth along with a third part of the angels, and in Revelation 12:12, we earthlings are told to "beware". The place where God is seated will never be defiled again by pride or unrighteousness; Jesus will not have to come again and be sacrificed to the Father because of sin. All things are put under his feet (Heb.2:8), and the last thing put there will be death.
Jesus was showing me through the story of Esther that God is not going to put-up with any unruly servants. But, if we humble ourselves and keep God's commandments as faithful servants, God will allow us to eat and commune with Him in his temple.
There will be some people on Judgment Day, summoned before the King but not wearing the clothes (robes of righteousness) provided by their King; and still some will be wearing garments that are spotted, dirty, and wrinkled. Some are dressed by their own spiritual tailors. These garments (self-righteousness) of men's religious ceremonies are as filthy rags, and many people have become proud by wearing them.
Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are. (1Cor. 3:16-17)
Haman had defiled king Ahasuerus' inner court, and in his pride, he paid for it with his very life. By being faithful to Ahasuerus, Mordecai was honored, and received many rewards and blessings from the king. Esther, in her humility, still bowed before king Ahasuerus and was very much loved by all.
Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. (Revelation 22:14)