The Light of the Heavens

“Do you see those stars?”  my father asked, pointing skyward as we walked across the Middle paddock. It was a dark evening in winter. We must have been coming back from the cowshed. The sky looked like an inky blue-black curtain overlaid with splotches and pin pricks of light, indigo with a hem of orange and pink.

I stopped and looked up.

“They’re angels” he said.

I was at the age to believe him. Since then, I’ve loved the night sky.  That sense of wonder has lingered on since childhood when I’m in a place where I can see the stars.

elysium-stars

When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers,
The moon and the stars, which You have ordained,
What is man that You are mindful of him,
And the son of man that You care for him?
For You have made him a little lower than the angels,
And You have crowned him with glory and honor.” Psalm 8:3-5

Later on in life I pointed at the Pleiades, a dim cluster of stars I saw in the winter sky and asked God what they were.  It took a while for God to answer because he had to wait for me to grow up and read my Bible.  I learned that group of seven stars represented the angels of the churches.  I wish I could tell my father.

I wrote about those in my last blog post, The mystery of the seven stars where I wrote about Matariki, a Maori festival.

God said in his word to “seek the one who made the seven stars and Orion,Amos 5:8. 

luk-12-32-web

The Sheepfolds

There are two other groups of seven stars.  Ursa Minor and Ursa Major are constellations in the northern hemisphere which represent sheepfolds.  I can’t see them from down here in NZ.  They dominate the northern sky and are always visible.   

The meaning of Ursa Major is The Sheepfold and the Sheep, and Ursa Minor is the Lesser Flock.  The star meanings correspond with the Sheepfolds.  In Hebrew Dohver, a fold, and Dohv, a bear, were confused, hence the Bear instead of the Sheep.

I’ve written about the star names here: The Sheepfolds.

Polaris, the brightest star in the constellation of Ursa Minor sits at top of the Ursa Major, the big sheepfold.  It’s been positioned there for the last 2,000 years – since the time of Christ.  It reminds me of Psalm 119:89-91 about God’s word being settled in heaven.

The Good Shepherd

Jesus is in charge of sheepfolds.  He said, “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me — just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd.”
John 10:1-16

Is it any surprise that the birth of Jesus was first announced to the shepherds guarding the sheepfolds?

The Good Shepherd said, “Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.”  Luke 12:32-34

What does it mean, that it’s the Father’s good pleasure to give us the Kingdom?

The big picture is that we will take our place in a nation, a kingdom that God will create on Earth as He has created in Heaven, a Kingdom that will have no end and will be under the rulership of the Lord Jesus Christ.

What did Jesus say about the Kingdom?

The Coming of the Kingdom

Now when He was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God does not come with observation; nor will they say,  ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’ For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you.”

The Kingdom Within

What did He mean, “the Kingdom of God is within?”

Did Jesus mean it was because He was in their midst?

Or did He mean that as His followers our place, our role within the Kingdom of God is there for us to discover?

He probably meant both things.

In the beginning was the Word – the Logos, and the Logos was with God, and the Logos was God.  Astro-Logos is the story about the King, the Word of God in the stars.

When you look up, remember we’re made of the same stuff as the stars … and stars shine brightest in the darkness.

Earth and Stars

With the Word of God in the Stars, and the Word of God in the Bible, that’s two witnesses.  That’s the truth, that’s the big picture.  I’m a details person, not so much big picture.  I could not find any books about the Kingdom of God on a personal level.  So I wrote my own account as a memoir.  My conversations with the King mainly take place in the Kingdom.

Very early on in my book, the King appeared as a Shepherd, after I moved at the age of eleven to a sheep farm called ‘Glenoch.’  The farm was on a narrow gravel road that shared a boundary with ‘Mount Zion,’ a neighbouring sheep farm.

Jesus identified Himself with seven “I AM” statements and the roles he takes in my book reflect that.

I invite you to read all about him.  The book has had very good reviews.  I am always on the lookout for reviews so please contact me if you can help.


Notes

With the constellations, don’t be confused by the Crab and the Bears.  Our home in Heaven is pictured in the stars.

The constellations are in the sign of Cancer.  The ancient Akkadian name of the month of Cancer is Su-kul-na, the seizer or possessor of seed.
Source: Bullinger’s “Witness of the Stars.”

In the centre of the sign of Cancer, there is a remarkably bright cluster of stars, so bright that they can be sometimes seen with the naked eye. It looks like a comet, and is made up of a great multitude of stars. Modern astronomers call it the Beehive but its ancient name has come down to us as Praesepe, which means a multitude, offspring.


Links

These 2 Constellations Remind Us of Jesus’ Incredible John 10 Promises

Ursa Minor

Polaris has been getting brighter during the past couple of decades, for reasons that are still poorly understood.  As of 2014 a group of scientists estimated that Polaris could be about 4.6 times brighter today than it was in ancient times.


Signs in the heavens, October 2014

Lunar_Eclipse_Masterton_1After playing cards on Wednesday night I stopped to look up at the lunar eclipse.  It was a chilly spring night on the 8th October 2014.  The full moon was out, unobscured by the clouds which had blocked the first blood moon of the 15th April.    

Lunar eclipses are common, but a Tetrad where there are four lunar eclipses in a row is not.  This Tetrad is even more unusual because there is a solar eclipse in the mix.  When the last Tetrad occurred in 1967 Israel had the Six Day war.  Israel considers blood moons to be an omen of war and when there is a solar eclipse it’s an omen of war for the other 70 nations.   Jesus did say that prior to His return there would be wars and rumours of wars.

As the moon slowly moved into the Earth’s shadow creating a spooky sight I wondered what constellation the sun was in.  I opened “Stellarium” on my laptop, a free planetarium program which is great for star-gazing.

8-10-14 Blood Moon

Virgo, 8th October 2014, night of second blood moon of the Tetrad.

The sun was on Virgo’s arm, as she held a branch in her hand.  Virgo is a significant sign.  The prophet Isaiah stared 700 years into the future and gave Ahaz king of Judah a prophecy involving a virgin and Son.

Ahaz the King of Judah was at war.  Isaiah said; “Ask a sign for yourself from your God; ask it either in the depth or in the height above.”
But Ahaz said, “I will not ask, nor will I test the Lord.”  Then Isaiah said, “Hear now, O house of David! Is it a small thing for you to weary men, but will you weary my God also? Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel.”

Immanuel means “God with us”. We know that Virgo means the virgin, but the meaning of the constellations was lost in Babylon. Virgo holds a branch in her left hand, and an ear of corn in the other.  The brightest star in Virgo is Spica.  Spica has an ancient name, handed down to us in all the star-maps. It is called in Arabic Al Zimach, which means the BRANCH.  What was the meaning of the branch?  The BRANCH was the title of a servant of God who would come to remove the sin of this land.

“Listen, High Priest Joshua, you and your associates seated before you, who are men symbolic of things to come: I am going to bring my servant, the Branch. See, the stone I have set in front of Joshua! There are seven eyes on that one stone, and I will engrave an inscription on it,’ says the Lord Almighty, ‘and I will remove the sin of this land in a single day.”  Zechariah 3:8-10. 

The stone in Zechariah’s prophecy represents Jesus, and the seven eyes represent angels and churches.

The ear of corn in Virgo’s hand represents a harvest.  When Jesus was on Earth, He went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness.  When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.  Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few.  Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”  Matthew 9:35.

2migiddo-church-7I moved my attention to the moon, which was now a rusty shade of red.  The moon was in Pisces.   The sign of PISCES means “Their blessings in abeyance” (temporary cessation or suspension).  The three constellations in PISCES are;

  1. THE BAND–bound, but binding their great enemy Cetus, the sea monster.  (The beast up out of the sea in Revelation 13).
  1. ANDROMEDA (The Chained Woman). The Redeemed in their bondage and affliction.
  1. CEPHEUS (The King). Their Redeemer coming to rule. The brightest star is called Al Deramin, which means coming quickly. The next is named Al Phirk (Arabic), the Redeemer.

Jesus said “Behold I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.  I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.” Revelation 12:13-14.

What did he mean, coming quickly?  It’s been 2000 years.  The Lord has no sense of time! “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. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”  2 peter 3:8-9.

The prophet Daniel said; “The end will come like a flood: War will continue until the end, and desolations have been decreed.” Daniel 9:26. Coming like a flood means events will speed up.

Besides the blood moon, there were two lots of meteor showers in the northern hemisphere; October 5th-6th the Camelopardalids and October 6th-9th the Draconids (from Draco).

This blood moon happened on the Jewish feast of Sukkot, which means “the in-gathering”.

Tiberias_synagogue_mosaic_etrog_lulav2

Lulav

Sukkot celebrates the harvest.  It is called The Feast of Tabernacles. It will be a time for the survivors of the nations to bow before the King (Zechariah 14:16).  After the crops were gathered from the land God commanded a festival, where the Israelites were to take a bundle of branches from four different trees;
“On the first day, you must take for yourself a fruit of the citron tree, an unopened palm frond (lulav), myrtle branches, and willows [that grow near] the brook. You shall rejoice before God for seven days.”  Leviticus 23:40

It was called “Lulav”.  Is it a coincidence that the children of Israel are waving branches at Sukkot?  I don’t think so.

Jesus was familiar with the day.  In John 7 Jesus did not go to the Festival of Tabernacles at first.  Jesus said to his brothers “You go to the festival. I am not going up to this festival, because my time has not yet fully come.”
After he had said this, he stayed in Galilee. However, after his brothers had left for the festival, he went also, not publicly, but in secret.
Jesus has not yet fulfilled this Feast but the day is coming when He will.  http://kswptim.wordpress.com/page/3/

A future sign in the heavens

I study the signs because it helps me understand the scriptures.  God is still using the signs of the heavens in His word.  For instance, in Revelation 12; “A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head. She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth.

Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on its heads. Its tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that it might devour her child the moment he was born. She gave birth to a son, a male child, who “will rule all the nations with an iron scepter. And her child was snatched up to God and to his throne.” Revelation 12-6

The word for “snatched up” means “Harpazo”.  Harpazo is defined as seize by force; snatch up, suddenly and decisively – like someone seizing bounty (spoil, a prize); to take by an open display of force (i.e. not covertly or secretly).
“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.” (1 Thessalonians 4:16-18).

This is what is meant by the Rapture.  I don’t know when this will be, before the Tribulation or during.  For the persecuted Church, the Tribulation has already begun.  What will be happening in the heavens when this sign appears?

The Lord expects His Church to be like the sons of Issachar, men who understood the times.  It is really important now, because just like in Jesus’s day, people are feeling harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 

I am here at your service.  I know my Bible, I have a gift of discernment, and I learn as much as I can about what I see.  A useful book is one called “The Witness of the Stars”, written by EW Bullinger in 1893.  He’s not going to mind if you download it for free.

If you don’t know God, I hope you can see there is a lot more to Him and the Bible than you may have been led to believe.  I have a heart for people to know God and take Him at His word.   If you have any questions I will do my best to answer them.

The Lamb of God

 “The lamb of God” is another title for the King, a title that describes Him well. Why did Jesus have to be the sacrificial lamb?

lamb-of-god

Did God the Father demand sacrifices, or did he desire mercy?  He desired mercy.  This is what God says;

For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings.”  Hosea 6:6

This world is short on mercy.  People had to learn that a sacrifice was needed in order to pay for sin.

Sacrifices were to provide an atonement for sin.  They were designed to point to the fulfilment of God’s ultimate sacrifice for us.

God will provide a lamb

Do you know the story where Abraham was asked to sacrifice his son Isaac on the same mountain that Jesus was crucified on?  When they came to Mount Moriah, Isaac spoke up and said to his father Abraham, “Father?”

“Yes, my son?” Abraham replied. “The fire and wood are here,” Isaac said, “but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?” 

Abraham answered, “God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.” And the two of them went on together.  Genesis 22:6-8

God asked Abraham to do this because he was pointing to a future sacrifice that He, as a Father was going to make of His Son.  That was the first sign.

God provided that sacrifice. It cost Him everything.

fGSLTW“For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son so that we may not perish, but have eternal life”.  John 3:16

The Passover was the next sign.  Lambs were first sacrificed at Passover, on the night before Israel’s exodus out of Egypt, nearly 3000 years ago.  The lamb was taken into the household 4 days before the Passover.  Why, I wonder?  The Passover lamb, a male lamb with no blemish, was sacrificed on the 14th day of Nisan, the first month of the Jewish year. The blood was to be a sign for Israel.  

The blood of the lamb was put on the sides and tops of the doorframes.  On that night, the firstborn of both people and animals were struck down in Egypt.  When God saw the blood, He passed over the houses where they were, and the people were spared.

The story of that first Passover is detailed in Exodus 12.

When Jesus began His ministry, John the Baptist said “Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.”  John 1:29

The prophet Isaiah saw the Lamb of God 700 years before His birth.  He prophesied “He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.”  Isaiah 53:7

Jesus made it clear to the Disciples that He was going to give up His life in exchange for ours at Passover. When Jesus had finished saying all these things, he said to his disciples, “As you know, the Passover is two days away—and the Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified.”  Matthew 26:1

When He died on the cross, his final words were “it is finished”.  The actual word was “Tetelestai” – meaning to bring to a close, to finish, to end, passed, finished, to perform, execute, complete, to fulfil.

Do you believe that Jesus is the Lamb of God?   If you do not yet believe, will you take the lamb, and examine him for yourself over the next 4 days?

 

The lost lamb

The lambing beat, Sharon & Jo Dassler

Sharon & Joanne Dassler, back from the lambing beat

There is nothing more endearing than a lamb.  This is me in my earlier life when I lived and worked on our family farm, bringing in a lamb we found next to its dead mother. 

We did a lambing beat each day to check the ewes and bring in any orphans and we were really happy when one was found.  We did our best to search for the little ones and save them.

In the same way the Lord goes out of his way to search for and save us.  Jesus said;

For the Son of Man has come to save that which was lost.

“What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off?

And if he finds it, truly I tell you, he is happier about that one sheep than about the ninety-nine that did not wander off.

In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should perish.”  Matthew 18:14

“He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young. Isaiah 40:11 (Old Testament)

This shepherd loved us so much He laid His life down for us.

Jesus said I AM the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father, and I lay down my life for the sheep.”  John 10:14-15 (New Testament)

The Good Shepherd and His Sheep

“Very truly I tell you Pharisees, anyone who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber.   The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep.  The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice.  But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.” John 10:1-5

John 10-27

Hearing the Master’s Voice

His masters voice

Christ said “My sheep hear my voice”.  He’s not kidding, it is possible to hear His voice.  A very dear Moslem friend of mine, who I shall call “Ishmael”, asked me how I could hear God’s voice.  Are you wondering the same thing?

I assure you it is possible to know God, and speak with Him, but its up to you to initiate the conversation.  He is waiting for you.

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. Matthew 7:7

Make sure you’re going to the right God, I can’t stress this enough.  Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light.  2 Corinthians 11:14  There is only one way to God. You have to approach God through Jesus.   This is not me saying it, this is what  Jesus said.  Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6.  

This is how you can hear His voice:

1) Believe that Jesus died to save you, and ask Him to be your Lord.  “If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.” Romans 10:9-10

Someone once said to me “It can’t be that easy!”  Yes it is!  God wants to save us.  It should be called “Salvation for dummies!”

Turn away from sin, find a small, Bible believing Church, and ask to be baptised with water and the Holy Spirit.  If you are in a country where you can’t do this openly, ask Jesus to save you and give you the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit is given freely to those you ask.

Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead?  Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion?  If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” Luke 11:11

2) Read the Bible.  “Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word.”  Romans 10:17

3) Record any meaningful, “non-pizza” dreams.  “‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.” Acts 2:17

4) Take note of signs and coincidences, and record them in a journal.

5) Be a seeker of the truth, not of the doctrines of men.  Make sure that what you are taught agrees with what is written in the Bible.

“Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.”  Acts 17:11

Let me know if you do this, so I can pray for you or answer any questions you may have.

The Sheepfolds

Jesus talked about two sheep folds he is in charge of.  One sheepfold is his people Israel, the other sheepfold is his followers. 

The other Sheepfold

He said; “I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd.” John 10:16

Let’s look up at the night sky, at the first stories that were told.  There are two constellations that speak of the sheep folds.  They are in the sign of Cancer called URSA MAJOR and URSA MINOR.  They are known as the Big Dipper and Little Dipper.  The Little Dipper has the Pole Star.

They’re also known as Bears.  In Hebrew Dohver, a fold, and Dohv, a bear, were confused, hence the Big Bear and the Little Bear instead of the Big Sheepfold and the Lesser Sheepfold.  The meaning of Ursa Major is The Sheepfold and the Sheep, and Ursa Minor is the Lesser Flock.

The Sheepfold - Ursa Major and Minor

The other stars confirm the sheepfold;
El Alcola (Arabic), the sheepfold (as in Psalm 95:7; and 100:3),
Cab’d al Asad, multitude, many assembled,
Annaish, the assembled,
Megrez, separated, as the flock in the fold,
El Kaphrah, protected, covered (Hebrew, redeemed and ransomed),
Dubheh Lachar (Arabic), the latter herd or flock,
Helike (so called by HOMER in the Iliad), company of travellers,
Amaza (Greek), coming and going,
and the name of the star at the end of the handle of the Dipper, Alkaid, means “Assembly.”

The source of the information about the constellations is from a book called The Witness of the Stars, written by E. W. Bullinger in 1893.  It complements and illustrates some of the great passages of the Bible, and shows how the story of the King was written in the stars.

The gate, and the sheep that went astray

Splattered with mud, I threw myself at the ewes and lambs that were dodging past me.  I tried to stop one charging ewe, only to stab my hand on a thorny stick of gorse hidden in her fleece.  Another jumping ewe hit me in the chest, ran me over and kept on going.

NZ lambs

It was our first muster, in late August – the end of winter and the first month of our new lives on the sheep farm.  Our arrival coincided with the lambing and docking season, one of the busiest times of the year.  We didn’t know what we were doing, and lacked the experience to see that the  docking pen was in an impossible place.  It was stuck right in the middle of the long boundary fence we shared with Mt Zion, the sheep station in the next valley over from ours.  I don’t know what the previous owners were thinking.  It was a stupid place to put the pen, as there were no corners to herd the sheep into.

Ewes and lambs were launching themselves in every direction, with us six inexperienced children, aged eleven down to five,  trying to hold them.  There were no dogs for that first muster, we were the dogs.  Our father, more used to cows than sheep, shouted at us in frustration.

That first dock took all day.  Wearily trudging home in the dark, I decided to ask for a crook for my birthday, a staff with a curved end.  It would make life easier mustering those sheep.  I thought of the pictures I’d seen of sheep trotting after their Shepherd.  What a contrast.  Nothing could be further from that idyllic image. These sheep weren’t tame.  We were strangers to them.  There was no way they were going to follow us.

In Jesus day, the sheep were led in small flocks by their Shepherd.  The pens were for the sheep to lie down in peace.  The Shepherd would lay his own body across the gate of the sheepfold.  Jesus was thinking about that when He said “I AM the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved.

sheepfold

These are His words;

“Very truly I tell you Pharisees, anyone who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber. The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep.  The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.  When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice.  But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.”  Jesus used this figure of speech, but the Pharisees did not understand what he was telling them.

Therefore Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture.  The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. John 10:1-10

I know that the Lord has chased more sheep than I have.  He’s run after me, before I knew Him as my Shepherd.  We all like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way.  Isaiah 53:6.  He wants us to follow Him.  May you hear the voice of the true Shepherd calling, and enter by the gate.  Here is good pasture, and you will find rest for your soul.

“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.  But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.”  Matthew 7:13-14

Sheep of his pasture