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Questions & Answers

Rose from salt

First posted: January 17, 2010

 

Question

{The question below was extracted from two emails sent to us by a visitor. The wording is ours, but it is consistent with the questions posed and the issues raised in the email.}

 

After reading the "Moon overshadowed" posting, a site visitor wrote the following:

"Interesting comment on salt ... however Isaiah 35:7 comes to mind here."

 

Here, the visitor was making a reference to what we said regarding Ezekiel 47:11 and the fact that "not all places will be restored" when the River of God begins to flow throughout the Earth. Here, then, are the two verses being compared:

 

"But the miry places thereof and the marishes thereof shall not be healed; they shall be given to salt. " (Ezekiel 47:11)

 

"And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water: in the habitation of dragons, where each lay, shall be grass with reeds and rushes." (Isaiah 35:7)

 

Therefore, the visitor's email begs the following question:

Does Isaiah 35:7 nullify the places "given to salt" prophesied by the Holy Spirit in Ezekiel 47:11, or are both verses actually talking about the same thing?

 

 

Answer

 

Isaiah 35, including verse 7, is a prophetic word regarding the restoration of the Church, as well as the restoration of the Earth in general. The Church is presently a spiritual desert, devoid of the true life of the Spirit. Trapped in her religious paradigms, she sees herself as spiritually prosperous and plentiful, without realising that she is naked, blind, and poor. Those who are in the Spirit, however, perceive the devastating level of her spiritual dryness, and their longing is to see the manifestation of God's Glory amongst the believers of the Earth. They also long to see the restoration of the Earth's spiritual atmosphere from one overwhelmed by spiritual emptiness and chaos (Genesis 1:2) to one where God's glory covers the Earth as the waters cover the sea (Habakkuk 2:14), a place filled with the fearsome judgements of God (Psalm 105:7). This "filling" of the Church and the Earth is what the Spirit of God is pointing to in Ezekiel 47. In the midst of that generalised restoration of both the Church and the Earth, there will be "places" that will be too full of themselves to allow God to empty them so that they may be filled with His Glory and Judgements. These "places", which perceive themselves to be "full" and "fertile", shall be exposed as dry and empty wastelands as God fills up the rest of the Earth.

 
As we have shared in detail before, the number "35" prophetically points to a transition from a temporary desert ("3") and into the fulfilment of God's purposes ("5"). Therefore, Isaiah 35 actually points (in a subtle way) to the need to let go of places of conformity and stagnation in order to see the Glory of God manifested. The Israelites in the desert were unable to understand that their time in the wilderness was meant to be temporary, that they were delivered from Egypt in order to enter into a new land; they became too comfortable in the desert, choosing to make it their permanent home. Thus, the warning against stagnation is implicitly encoded into Isaiah 35.
 
Ironically, as many of the religiously "prosperous" places on Earth are rendered useless, many of the geographical places that religious believers look down their nose at shall come alive as their hidden potential is made manifest. We have shared more on this when talking about the "Tamesis rose revival". As the Lord said, many of the last shall be first, and many of the first shall be last (Matthew 19:30, Matthew 20:16, Mark 10:31). Many of the places that seem to be spiritually prosperous shall be exposed as irremediably dry, and many of the places that seem to be irremediably dry shall be turned into spiritual lands of God's Glory.
 
Another aspect that most believers fail to recognise when they read Isaiah 35 is that it explicitly speaks of God's vengeance:
 
"Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompence; he will come and save you." (Isaiah 35:4)
 
In other words, it is impossible to see the restoration that God describes in Isaiah 35 without the manifestation of His vengeance. Why? Because true restoration (as opposed to the false restoration the Church seeks after) requires that you deal with the deep roots of unrighteousness that are leading to the outward chaos (you cannot heal a malignant cancer without dealing with the tumour inside). This implies the need to permanently chastise the "places" (whether literal or spiritual) that have chosen to act as permanent strongholds against God's kingdom and righteousness on Earth. Many (if not most) of these places are those that have experienced God's rains of grace but who still refuse to submit to God's will (Hebrews 6:4-8). In other words, for the River of God to flow and for the rose to bloom in the desert, some places have to be turned into marshes and salty wastelands first. This is why God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, leaving the Dead Sea as a testimony of His actions there (as you may know, the Dead Sea is the saltiest body of water on Earth). This is why He turned Lot's wife into a pillar of salt, for she was unable to let go of the things that God had decreed unto destruction.
 
In short, Isaiah 35 does not nullify the Holy Spirit's comment on salt in Ezekiel 47:11. On the contrary, it solidifies it. You cannot have the blooming rose of Isaiah 35:7 without the marshes and salty wastelands of Ezekiel 47:11. You cannot have the River of God of Ezekiel 47 without the destruction of the places, peoples, and cultures that are proactively and deliberately hindering God's kingdom and righteousness. The River of God flows "from the eastern threshold" (Ezekiel 47:1), meaning that it comes with the Glory of God, and, as Scripture points out, the manifestation of God's Glory causes death, for nothing banal or temporary can stand before His face and remain on its feet.
 
In the visitor's email, there was an implicit reference to "Zion". This was no spiritual coincidence. The establishment of God's Zion stronghold on Earth requires the fulfilment of Ezekiel 47:11, whether the natural man wants to accept it or not.