The River of Life

There are a large number of subjects that come out of the subject of the sanctuary and as we look at these subjects, they continue to expand in their subject matter. Each point and truth becomes broader and wider. The sanctuary in heaven which God built and not man, unfolds truths that get deeper and deeper.

Ezekiel 47:1 Afterward he brought me again unto the door of the house; and, behold, waters issued out from under the threshold of the house eastward: for the forefront of the house [stood toward] the east, and the waters came down from under from the right side of the house, at the south [side] of the altar.

 47:2 Then brought he me out of the way of the gate northward, and led me about the way without unto the utter gate by the way that looketh eastward; and, behold, there ran out waters on the right side.

 47:3 And when the man that had the line in his hand went forth eastward, he measured a thousand cubits, and he brought me through the waters; the waters [were] to the ankles.

 47:4 Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through the waters; the waters [were] to the knees. Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through; the waters [were] to the loins.

 47:5 Afterward he measured a thousand; [and it was] a river that I could not pass over: for the waters were risen, waters to swim in, a river that could not be passed over.

 47:6 And he said unto me, Son of man, hast thou seen [this]? Then he brought me, and caused me to return to the brink of the river.

 47:7 Now when I had returned, behold, at the bank of the river [were] very many trees on the one side and on the other.

 47:8 Then said he unto me, These waters issue out toward the east country, and go down into the desert, and go into the sea: [which being] brought forth into the sea, the waters shall be healed.

 47:9 And it shall come to pass, [that] every thing that liveth, which moveth, whithersoever the rivers shall come, shall live: and there shall be a very great multitude of fish, because these waters shall come thither: for they shall be healed; and every thing shall live whither the river cometh.

Here is the sanctuary and from under the door of the sanctuary comes forth flowing water which as it proceeds becomes deeper and deeper until it flows in great depth into the sea.

Ezekiel 47:12 And by the river upon the bank thereof, on this side and on that side, shall grow all trees for meat, whose leaf shall not fade, neither shall the fruit thereof be consumed: it shall bring forth new fruit according to his months, because their waters they issued out of the sanctuary: and the fruit thereof shall be for meat, and the leaf thereof for medicine.

The Water of Life

Where des the water proceed out of? The sanctuary which has things flowing out of it. Here in symbol are waters that flow out of the sanctuary. The heavenly sanctuary pours forth a living stream;

Revelation 22:1 And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.

In the heavenly sanctuary from Gods throne proceeds a river of water of life. This is the river of Ezekiel 47. The waters are issued to the east country and to the desert and sea and the waters that they run into it are healed. A great multitude of fish that live in these waters, shall be healed and everything shall live where the river comes to. From Gods throne proceed waters for healing. The trees growing by the side of the river are benefited so they produce fruit and the leaves for medicine. This is a picture of healing that comes from the sanctuary. All who drink deeply taking hold of Gods outpouring from His throne and Gods ways in the sanctuary, find healing.

Exodus 15:26 And said, If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I [am] the LORD that healeth thee.

From the Lord proceeds healing, He is the Lord that healeth, comfort is found.

Deuteronomy 7:15 And the LORD will take away from thee all sickness, and will put none of the evil diseases of Egypt, which thou knowest, upon thee; but will lay them upon all [them] that hate thee.

What is God saying here? I will take away from thee all sickness. Notice the condition mentioned if we will take hold of all Gods ways. The ways that come from the sanctuary if we heed and obey them, if we give them diligent attention, the Lord can heal us from all our diseases.

Psalms 103:1 Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, [bless] his holy name.

 103:2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:

 103:3 Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases;

We want to take God’s Word as it reads. God has said to us that we should not be careless about this and not to forget it because if we do we will probably not find healing. The fountain of healing comes from the throne in the sanctuary. It comes from God and the lamb and the product of what comes from Him is healing. The water starts off from the throne and it runs and gets deeper and deeper.

Zechariah 13:1 In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness.

A fountain for the healing of the nations of sins and impurities.

Christ came as the Great Physician to heal the wounds that sin has made in the human family; {6T 227.2}

There is a fountain opened to the house of David for sin and uncleanness to heal the wounds of sin. Disease comes as a consequence of sin.

…and His Spirit, working through His servants, imparts to sin-sick, suffering human beings a mighty healing power that is efficacious for the body and the soul. “In that day,” says the Scriptures, “there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness.” Zechariah 13:1. The waters of this fountain contain medicinal properties that will heal both physical and spiritual infirmities. {6T 227.2}

God’s way of healing relates to that which proceeds from his throne. On the earth made new is a living stream that runs from the throne in reality but there is something else for us to study as to what proceeds from His throne. Jesus said to the woman at the well that He who would drink of the water would become a living stream. It relates to His Word. His Word is the living water. The sanctuary in heaven and the earthly sanctuary had a message to convey in reference to this healing water.

Leviticus 13:1 And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron, saying,

 13:2 When a man shall have in the skin of his flesh a rising, a scab, or bright spot, and it be in the skin of his flesh [like] the plague of leprosy; then he shall be brought unto Aaron the priest, or unto one of his sons the priests:

 13:3 And the priest shall look on the plague in the skin of the flesh: and [when] the hair in the plague is turned white, and the plague in sight [be] deeper than the skin of his flesh, it [is] a plague of leprosy: and the priest shall look on him, and pronounce him unclean.

14:4 Then shall the priest command to take for him that is to be cleansed two birds alive [and] clean, and cedar wood, and scarlet, and hyssop:

 14:5 And the priest shall command that one of the birds be killed in an earthen vessel over running water:

 14:6 As for the living bird, he shall take it, and the cedar wood, and the scarlet, and the hyssop, and shall dip them and the living bird in the blood of the bird [that was] killed over the running water:

 14:7 And he shall sprinkle upon him that is to be cleansed from the leprosy seven times, and shall pronounce him clean, and shall let the living bird loose into the open field.

 14:8 And he that is to be cleansed shall wash his clothes, and shave off all his hair, and wash himself in water, that he may be clean: and after that he shall come into the camp, and shall tarry abroad out of his tent seven days.

This is another symbolic picture in reference to sin, uncleanness and disease.

The wonderful symbol of the living bird dipped in the blood of the bird slain and then set free to its joyous life, is to us the symbol of the atonement. There were death and life blended, presenting to the searcher for truth the hidden treasure, the union of the pardoning blood with the resurrection and life of our Redeemer. The bird slain was over living water; that flowing stream was a symbol of the ever flowing, ever cleansing efficacy of the blood of Christ, the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world, the fountain that was open for Judah and Jerusalem, wherein they may wash and be clean from every stain of sin. We are to have free access to the atoning blood of Christ. {1BC 1111.4}

Here is the message symbolised from the sanctuary, the flowing stream and the blood of Jesus and then the freedom of the bird free to fly.

This we must regard as the most precious privilege, the greatest blessing, ever granted to sinful man. And how little is made of this great gift! How deep, how wide and continuous is this stream! To every soul thirsting after holiness there is repose, there is rest, there is the quickening influence of the Holy Spirit, and then the holy, happy, peaceful walk and precious communion with Christ. Then, oh, then, can we intelligently say with John, “Behold the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sin of the world” (Letter 87, 1894). {1BC 1111.4}

Do you see what is available to us? We are to embrace and believe the beautiful flow of saving truth from the sanctuary. It has to do with believing and taking hold of and drinking the beautiful holiness imparted to us through Jesus Christ. Are you thirsting for holiness in the beautiful clear water of life that we can drink, wash and believe in? As we are imbued with truth we sometimes concentrate on the negatives and sinfulness of our life and we do not concentrate on the part that we are released by.

Yes we are sinful and abhor ourselves but no matter how leprous and sinful we are, if we plunge into that river, there is healing and the Lord can heal us from all our sickness. We must plunge into that and believe and enjoy it otherwise it doesn’t happen. The symbolism of the sanctuary is for us to embrace and understand in reality. For us to find healing as the leper had to in symbol in the New Testament reality, where are we to go when we are ill and sick?

James 5:14 Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:

 5:15 And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.

Here is the New Testament display of the Old Testament symbolism. We are to call the priest and the elders of the church to pray over us but this praying is continued.

James 5:16 Confess [your] faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

What is connected if you diligently heed the counsel of the Lord and we obey all his directions so that we will be healed from all our sickness? Our faults and sins need to be repented of. Not healed by magical prayer, but by following Gods instructions. As we embrace the message of Christ our righteousness and bathe our soul in this river of life, the Lord said we do not need to remain ill both spiritually and bodily. Our illness is healed but I must plunge into that healing water.

The God of Ekron

There is an example of failing to go to the Lord for healing in the Old Testament. There was a king of Israel who went for healing to the God of Ekron and not to the Lord. He went there for a prognosis and for an answer to heal. A prognosis is where the doctor tells you the length of time for your disease.

2 Kings 1:2 And Ahaziah fell down through a lattice in his upper chamber that [was] in Samaria, and was sick: and he sent messengers, and said unto them, Go, inquire of Baalzebub the God of Ekron whether I shall recover of this disease.

 1:3 But the angel of the LORD said to Elijah the Tishbite, Arise, go up to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria, and say unto them, [Is it] not because [there is] not a God in Israel, [that] ye go to inquire of Baalzebub the God of Ekron?

He went where? He went to the Gods of Baal. If God says I am the one that healeth thee, I am the doctor and I can heal you of all your sins and diseases, what is the lesson for us?

Ahaziah sent his servants to inquire of Baal-zebub, at Ekron; but instead of a message from the idol, he heard the awful denunciation from the God of Israel: “Thou shalt not come down from that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die.” It was Christ that bade Elijah speak these words to the apostate king. Jehovah Immanuel had cause to be greatly displeased at Ahaziah’s impiety. What had Christ not done to win the hearts of sinners and to inspire them with unwavering confidence in Himself? For ages He had visited His people with manifestations of the most condescending kindness and unexampled love. From the times of the patriarchs He had shown how His “delights were with the sons of men.” He had been a very present help to all who sought Him in sincerity. {5T 195.3}

This is packed with what is to occupy our mind when we are not well. That we will repose in the utter joy and comfort in the healing that comes from God as Jesus has shed His blood and we may enjoy a total relief from all stresses within ourselves. God has given so much evidence.

“In all their affliction He was afflicted, and the angel of His presence saved them: in His love and in His pity He redeemed them.” Yet Israel had revolted from God and turned for help to the Lord’s worst enemy. {5T 195.3}

The Hebrews were the only nation favored with a knowledge of the true God. When the king of Israel sent to inquire of a pagan oracle, he proclaimed to the heathen that he had more confidence in their idols than in the God of his people, the Creator of the heavens and the earth. In the same manner do those who profess to have a knowledge of God’s word dishonor Him when they turn from the Source of strength and wisdom to ask help or counsel from the powers of darkness. If God’s wrath was kindled by such a course on the part of a wicked, idolatrous king, how can He regard a similar course pursued by those who profess to be His servants? {5T 196.1}

Why is it that men are so unwilling to trust Him who created man, and who can by a touch, a word, a look, heal all manner of disease? Who is more worthy of our confidence than the One who made so great a sacrifice for our redemption? Our Lord has given us definite instruction through the apostle James as to our duty in case of sickness. When human help fails, God will be the helper of His people. “Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord: and the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up.” If the professed followers of Christ would, with purity of heart, exercise as much faith in the promises of God as they repose in satanic agencies, they would realize in soul and body the life-giving power of the Holy Spirit. {5T 196.2}

There is a power of healing as we embrace the water of God’s Word to our soul and do whatever God’s Word declares and let Him have us totally for His healing work. The Israelites did not turn anymore to the Lord and went to the physicians of Ekron. The statements in Testimonies Volume 5 are in reference to consulting spiritualist physicians. Today they are rampant. They use methods of the occult. Drugs come from the occult. The doctors of today have the Hippocratic Oath. Hippocrates was a Greek pagan worshipper. He was a physician and he is the one who even the doctors of today are making their oath upon.

This is all connected. For us to find healing, if we turn to the drug world of the doctors we are turning to the God of Ekron. We follow a careful path as we continue to proceed. Our safety for healing of our diseases is in following all Gods directions. They are found not only in mind healing form the Word of God but His counsels as gained form the sanctuary practised by true Godly physicians.

 The subject of the sanctuary was the key which unlocked the mystery of the disappointment of 1844. It opened to view a complete system of truth, connected and harmonious, showing that God’s hand had directed the great advent movement and revealing present duty as it brought to light the position and work of His people. {GC 423.1}

It opened to view the river, a whole system of truth.

Light was to be given, directing their minds to the temple of God in heaven; and as they should by faith follow their High Priest in His ministration there, new duties would be revealed. Another message of warning and instruction was to be given to the church. {GC 424.4}

From the time of the exposition of the sanctuary message as it unlocked the confusion of the early Advent believers in 1844 that there was a heavenly sanctuary and Jesus moving from the holy to the most holy and all it embraced, it laid out all the duties of Gods people to be ready for Jesus to come. What was given for all who were under the sanctuary message the true Adventist people back there?

Ezekiel’s Vision

 Such a river of life and healing God designs that, by His power working through them, our sanitariums shall be. {6T 228.1}

This was the river of life and healing in Ezekiel 47 that God designed to take place through those duties revealed to the Adventists at that time.

 Our sanitariums are to show forth to the world the benevolence of heaven; and though Christ’s visible presence is not discerned in the building, yet the workers may claim the promise: “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” {6T 228.2}

The establishment of these health centres were based upon Gods direction and related to that river that went deeper and deeper and healed all it touched. This opens to us the true understanding and balance of what we are going to be benefitted by. Everything that God wants to benefit us by is so that we can go along the path the pioneers had established in their methods of healing work.

The Remedies of God Verses the Remedies of Ekron

There are many ways of practicing the healing art, but there is only one way that Heaven approves. God’s remedies are the simple agencies of nature that will not tax or debilitate the system through their powerful properties. Pure air and water, cleanliness, a proper diet, purity of life, and a firm trust in God are remedies for the want of which thousands are dying; Testimonies, vol. 5, p. 443 (1885). {2SM 287.3}

Can you see the river of water? It is the instruction that comes from God that the healing properties he has put into activity will heal us as those rivers of water that are written of in Ezekiel.

…yet these remedies are going out of date because their skillful use requires work that the people do not appreciate. Fresh air, exercise, pure water, and clean, sweet premises are within the reach of all with but little expense; but drugs are expensive, both in the outlay of means and in the effect produced upon the system.–Testimonies, vol. 5, p. 443 (1885). {2SM 287.3}

Here is the river of life which in today’s society people don’t go to. It is no different. That which Adventists should have been doing with their sanitariums has been totally perverted with the drugs and all their practises today. They are going back to the God of Ekron. There are few institutions that can be the river of life as per Ezekiel. We have to learn quickly how to do these things so the Lord can do the rest. In the sanitariums at that time there were physicians and surgeons. Some think that if God will heal me, I don’t have to worry about such a thing as an operation. They will even die where God could have helped them through an operation.

It is our privilege to use every God-appointed means in correspondence with our faith, and then trust in God, when we have urged the promise. If there is need of a surgical operation, and the physician is willing to undertake the case, it is not a denial of faith to have the operation performed. After the patient has committed his will to the will of God, let him trust, drawing nigh to the Great Physician, the Mighty Healer, and giving himself up in perfect trust. {2SM 284.4}

That applies to every measure of Gods healing to follow God’s directive and Gods appointed means.

The Lord will honor his faith in the very manner He sees is for His own name’s glory. “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Trust ye in the Lord for ever: for in the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength” (Isaiah 26:3, 4).–Manuscript 67, 1899 (General Manuscript). {2SM 284.4}

In a critical operation the angels are there.

Who has been by your side as you have performed these critical operations? Who has kept you calm and self-possessed in the crisis, giving you quick, sharp discernment, clear eyesight, steady nerves, and skillful precision? The Lord Jesus has sent His angel to your side to tell you what to do. A hand has been laid upon your hand. Jesus, and not you, has guided the movements of your instrument. At times you have realized this, and a wonderful calmness has come over you. You dared not hurry, and yet you worked rapidly, knowing that there was not a moment to lose. The Lord has greatly blessed you.– Testimonies, vol. 8, pp. 187, 188 (To the medical superintendent of the Battle Creek Sanitarium, 1899). {2SM 285.1}

It is in Gods order if an operation is needed that He will direct the hands of a surgeon. That is part of all of Gods order.

-Before performing a critical operation, let the physician ask for the aid of the Great Physician. Let him assure the suffering one that God can bring him safely through the ordeal, that in all times of distress He is a sure refuge for those who trust in Him. –Ministry of Healing, p. 118 (1905). {2SM 284.2}

  The Saviour is present in the sickroom, in the operating room; and His power for His name’s glory accomplishes great things.–Manuscript 159, 1899 (Manuscript, “The Privileges and Duties of a Christian Physician”). {2SM 284.3}

This is the testimony of Jesus in reference to the balanced appreciation of Gods flowing healing methods. We read it plainly that it had to do with fresh air and pure water and with the elements of total trust in the Lord and such things as cleanliness. When disease takes a course where it needs to be treated with other things like natural herbs, vitamins and minerals, this is all in Gods order. If there is something very serious that needs an operation, it’s sometimes necessary. It is all in Gods order. We have a very important understanding to be gained as some say no I just want Jesus and the elders to heal me and I’m just going to rely on that because Jesus did it and I believe He can do the same thing today.

 The way in which Christ worked was to preach the Word, and to relieve suffering by miraculous works of healing. But I am instructed that we cannot now work in this way, for Satan will exercise his power by working miracles. God’s servants today could not work by means of miracles, because spurious works of healing, claiming to be divine, will be wrought. {2SM 54.2}

  For this reason the Lord has marked out a way in which His people are to carry forward a work of physical healing, combined with the teaching of the Word. Sanitariums are to be established, and with these institutions are to be connected workers who will carry forward genuine medical missionary work. Thus a guarding influence is thrown around those who come to the sanitariums for treatment. {2SM 54.3}

  This is the provision the Lord has made whereby gospel medical missionary work is to be done for many souls.–Letter 53, 1904. {2SM 54.4}

This is the miracle working activities of Gods people in the last days through the avenues of the river of life, the instruction that God gives and He instructs us what to do. He gives us the messages of truth that help us trust Him implicitly. There are diseases that He will take away through natural cures and if need be in a crisis through operations. The fountain of life is all embracing. It has to do with drinking deeply and trusting what the Lord has communicated to us and plunging ourselves into that Word and basking in it and letting it bubble forth inside of us to benefit others.

The Woman at the Well

Jesus was speaking to the Samaritan woman at David’s well.

John 4:13 Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again:

 4:14 But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.

Here is an understanding why the river that comes from under His throne gets deeper and deeper. All the people who take hold of that water, their own selves become a fountain and as the fountain comes from all believers of God, the river gets deeper and deeper.

  Wonderful is the work which God designs to accomplish through His servants, that His name may be glorified. God made Joseph a fountain of life to the Egyptian nation. Through Joseph the life of that whole people was preserved. Through Daniel God saved the life of all the wise men of Babylon. And these deliverances were as object lessons; they illustrated to the people the spiritual blessings offered them through connection with the God whom Joseph and Daniel worshiped. So through His people today God desires to bring blessings to the world. Every worker in whose heart Christ abides, everyone who will show forth His love to the world, is a worker together with God for the blessing of humanity. As he receives from the Saviour grace to impart to others, from his whole being flows forth the tide of spiritual life. {6T 227.2}

Christ came as the great physician and He works through His servants.

Christ came as the Great Physician to heal the wounds that sin has made in the human family; and His Spirit, working through His servants, imparts to sin-sick, suffering human beings a mighty healing power that is efficacious for the body and the soul. “In that day,” says the Scriptures, “there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness.” Zechariah 13:1. The waters of this fountain contain medicinal properties that will heal both physical and spiritual infirmities. {6T 227.2}

In the world there are many who are sick from their stressed out life. The truth as it is in Jesus is meant to take away this stress to bring the people into joy, calmness and peace. The beautiful repose found in these messages as we are released from these stresses and we rely on God’s instructions, He will heal us from our disease. There is no disease He won’t heal us from. I ask myself many times over, why something hasn’t healed when God has promised? Do you know why? We don’t repose entirely, we still carry stress.

The gospel of Jesus, the beautiful picture of those birds is to communicate to us that we can fly as a free as a bird and we don’t need to be under stress anymore and we are to give over and the Lord will heal us of all our stress related diseases. As we have the physical consequences of stress, we use the natural remedies for the diseases that have so heavily entrenched themselves upon us. We need some extra help. God grant us that we use we can pick up on this beautiful story of Ezekiel 37 and pick up every Word that comes from the sanctuary so we will be free from the diseases around us in Egypt.

Amen.

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2 Responses to The River of Life

  1. Pingback: Expect God’s Presence All The Time – Ezekiel 44 | This Day With God

  2. Pingback: the symbolic language of God’s way of heavenly peace « power of language blog: partnering with reality by JR Fibonacci

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