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The Watchers

 

Isaiah 62:6

“On your walls, O Jerusalem, I have appointed watchmen; All day and all night they will never keep silent You who remind the LORD, take no rest for yourselves;”

 

This verse and message came from a prayer time with a group of pastors.

 

About a month ago on a Wednesday, during the weekly Sr. Pastor’s prayer, the Lord spoke to me pray out to the pastors there that we were the watchmen over our cities. They agreed, and I know some of them think that way.  We are overseers of our churches, but also corporately over the church in our respective cities.  Not just as pastors, but as Elders.  Some more Elder than others, but with a calling to not only lead our people, but be a Spiritual covering.

 

And as I thought about our role as pastors and overseers as watchmen, the Lord spoke to me about the whole church, all believers, that all of us are called in some way to be watchmen, to keep the watch.  Some have different roles, but all of us should be engaged in the same Spirit to be watchful in some form or another, and I will get to those roles here in a couple minutes.

 

As Christians, we have been called to know the signs of the times, know the spiritual climate especially in our area of influence, and take serious the call we have to stand not only in the face of spiritual conflict but to be ready to bring the Kingdom of Heaven into life changing situations.

 

I believe we all know Ephesians 6:10-11, “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able “to stand” against the schemes of the devil.  Ephesians 6:14, “Stand therefore.”

 

So we as believers have been called to keep the watch, to stand firm in faith, and in the power of God, to stand in the gap for the people.  Those that know God, and those that don’t.

 

Today, almost more than any other time in history, our enemy, knowing his time is short, is ramping up his followers to attack us, believers, sons and daughters of God, and accelerate his aggression toward us to keep us out of the fight. 

 

Why? Because he knows the power we possess.

 

Mark 11:23, “Truly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be done for him.”

 

One of my favorite verses because we who believe have the power to speak the name of Jesus to move mountains for ourselves and others.  Light displacing darkness.

 

We can call down heaven into any situation.  So if our enemy thinks he can keep us in unbelief, or bogged down in trials, he can keep us from professing God’s promises so we will not be threat to his advancements.

 

Now I do not like giving the devil, little d, any recognition, because he is a defeated foe, but because of his intentions, and the fact that he is raising havoc across the whole earth, I as a Believer and a son of God, must bring Jesus into every situation and confrontation that is brought into my path. Those situations that may come in the future, and those that may happen in the moment.  Watchmen today must be available and aware just as in the times of old.

 

So what is a Watchman or a Watcher?

 

From the standpoint of Isaiah 62:6, the word watchman in Hebrew is the word shamar, “shaw mar”.  It is the most common definition.

 

A primitive root; properly to hedge about (as with thorns), that is, guard; generally to protect, attend to, etc.: - beware, be circumspect, take heed (to self), keep (-er, self), to mark, look narrowly, observe, preserve, regard, reserve, save (self), sure, (that lay) wait (for), watch (-man).

 

In 2 Samuel 18:26, it speaks of a watchman,

 

“The watchman saw another man running. And the watchman called to the gate and said, “See, another man running alone!”

 

 

This Watchman definition also common is tsâphâh, tsaw-faw'.

 

A primitive root; properly to lean forward, that is, to peer into the distance; by implication to observe, await: - to behold, espy, look up (well), wait for, (keep the) watch (-man).

In the Greek, it’s the word skopos, it is to keep an eye. To be watchful.

 

The prophet Jeremiah called them watchers, or in Hebrew, nâtsar naw-tsar'

 

A primitive root; to guard, in a good sense (to protect, maintain, obey, etc.) or a bad one (to conceal, etc.): - besieged, hidden things, keep (-er, -ing), monument, observe, preserve (-r), subtil, watcher (-man).

 

So you can easily sense from the definitions, these individuals had the task of being a watchful guardian for the people. They were individuals who gave protection from being aware, as well those who gave notification of what went on beyond the city walls. They could sound an alarm if needed, or be one who notice of things happening outside the city gates.

 

And today watchmen are really no different.  The walls they view from are in the supernatural. These are individuals who are in tune with the Spirit of God, who are aware of movement in the spirit realm moving in the power and anointing of the Holy Spirit.

 

Jeremiah 33:2-3, “Thus says the LORD who made the earth, the LORD who formed it to establish it—the LORD is his name:  Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known. 

 

Jesus said in John 8:12, I am the light of the world, he who follows me will not walk in darkness.”

 

His Holy Spirit will give us knowledge.  We will be aware.

 

These Spiritually Aware Watchmen come in more than one form.  They are those who walk in the prophetic, those who operate in the Gifts of Knowledge and Discerning of Spirits, and those who are Intercessors. 

 

Let’s begin with those who walk in the prophetic.

 

There are different levels of those who operate prophetically, but I am only focusing on one aspect. How they operate as a watchman. Prophets receive knowledge and spiritual revelation from the Holy Spirit.  I believe we know that.

 

So they by their prophetic nature, receive revelation from God about upcoming events or situations. Examples are the prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Daniel to name a few, and the prophetic nature these Old Testament prophets operated in has not changed today.  Same God, same Spirit.

 

But modern day prophets operate in the tsaw-faw definition of a watchman in the Spirit with implication to observe and behold what the Spirit is saying and then make the church aware of things to come. They may speak forth the Word, personal or a corporate revelation, and also intercede in prayer. 

 

In the New Testament, a man named Agabus received revelation,

 

Acts 11:28, “And one of them named Agabus stood up and foretold by the Spirit that there would be a great famine over all the world (this took place in the days of Claudius)”

 

His word caused the early church to intervene, and again, today it is no different. Prophets are there to give words of encouragement, or words of warning due to their spiritual insight from the Holy Spirit.  

 

But there are also prophets who give words through intercession.

 

That intercession can be intercession in prayer, or their intercession can be through worship. 

 

Let’s talk first about prophetic intercession through worship.

 

Prophetic intercession is nothing new, King David had his tabernacle, and the Tabernacle of David had 24-hour intercessory prayer and prophetic worship around the tabernacle that housed the Ark of the Covenant. We find this in 1 Chronicles 15.  I’ve preached on this before.

 

And as we know, this type of prophetic worship and intercession is coming back again in many churches especially in houses of prayer like here. 

 

In Amos 9:11, God said he would restore the Tabernacle of David, and rebuild it as it used to be.  The Apostle John spoke of it in Acts 15:16. Today, the tabernacle is being restored, and these prophetic worshippers and intercessors are prophetically speaking out to the church.

 

The worship here lead by Alyssa with Natalie is that type of worship.  Alyssa is a prophet who is a worship leader.  We sing worship songs, but at times, and especially during our intercessory prayer times, Alyssa will break out in Spirit led Prophetic worship.  This type of worship can bring a Word or revelation through song, or be prophetic in nature to break down strongholds, bring healing, and cover people with supernatural power and anointing. 

 

At King David’s tabernacle, he specifically picked individuals who were prophets to be a part of leading the worship. 

 

1 Chronicles 25:4, “who prophesied, using the harp in thanking and praising the LORD.”

Prophetic worship creates a covering.  Alyssa was prophesied over, and was told that her worship in the prophetic was warfare.  It brings protection as well as tearing down of strongholds.  It was defensive as well as offensive.  So these types of watchmen not only protect or defend, but they also can go on the offensive.   

 

Intercessory prophets hear or see in the Spirit, then pray in the Spirit.  The prophet Daniel was one of those intercessors.  So was Jeremiah. 

 

They receive revelation from the Spirit, then intercede for the people if it is warranted.  They were a strong prophetic voice that caused things to happen in the spirit realm as well as the physical because they moved the heart of God.

 

Isaiah 62:6

“On your walls, O Jerusalem, I have appointed watchmen; All day and all night they will never keep silent You who remind the LORD, take no rest for yourselves;” Pure Intercession.

 

Another type of watchman are those who operate in the gifts of knowledge and spiritual discernment.  Now by the nature of their titles, I am not going to spend much time there.  It is quite evident how these individuals operate.  The Holy Spirit gives them knowledge of events and situations that they will come in contact with, or do come in contact with. 

 

I discern spirits, to a point. I sense things that are not right, but I don’t always know specifically what it is.   But being that I am an intercessor, I will go to prayer about the issue.  And usually in prayer, the Holy Spirit reveals to me in a broader scope what is going on.  The truth is revealed. You can say I receive revelation during prayer of the issue.

 

Pastor Milt Thompson from Living Stones Charismatic Fellowship in Racine, a good friend of The Furnace, has the gift of knowledge; he is a watchman for this church and the community.  God gives Pastor Milt revelation through the Holy Spirit about physical and spiritual issues and Milt acts on them.  Milt receives Wisdom, another gift on how to handle the situation.

 

Concerning the differences between prophets and the other gifts, I believe prophets speak about the future, and those with the gifts of discernment and knowledge deal with the now.

 

These gifts like the gift of prophecy have the user of the gifts bring into the physical realm, what is happening in the spiritual realm.  And that causes us to prepare in whatever way for next steps.  Such as intercession, or intervention.

 

So we have those who prophesy, who are watchmen, those who have the gift of knowledge or discernment of spirits who are watchman.  Lastly, we have those who intercede who are watchmen.

 

Because some may say, I am not a prophet, and I do not have the other two gifts, but we all have the Holy Spirit, and we all can pray. The Apostle Paul in:

 

Ephesians 6:18, “With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints,”

 

Note, Paul said to be alert, and why?  For all the Saints.

 

Jesus said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.” Matthew 28:18.

 

And if you believe that, do you believe that you have received that authority too?

 

Jesus gave authority to His 12 disciples: Luke 9:1, "Then he called his twelve disciples together, and gave them power and authority over all devils, and to cure diseases."

 

Jesus gave authority to His 70 disciples: Luke 10:17, "And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through your name."

 

In Luke 10:19, Jesus said He has given us authority over all the power of the enemy.

 

So do we believe that? Well that leads us into what an intercessor is and the power of intercession.  Interceding with authority.

 

What is an intercessor?  An intercessor is someone who intervenes on behave of another.  The Apostle Paul in Romans 8:34 says that Jesus intercedes for us.  So Jesus is the go between, between God and us. The Living Bible says, “He pleads for us.”  That is what intercessors do.

 

They are a middle man.  A go between.  A stop gap. They occupy the middle ground between two parties.  They pray in the Spirit to move things. To change things.  To protect things. To battle things. They cause things to happen in the physical as well as the spiritual realm.  They engage with the Holy Spirit in situations that are confronted with.

 

Ezekiel 22:30: “I [God] sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before Me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none” (KJV).

 

God was looking for an intercessor.

 

The basic Hebrew word for intercession is paga (paw-gah), which is found 44 times in the Old Testament.  Primarily it means to meet, and encounter, but has other distinct meanings.

 

1. To meet,” as to meet with God.  It means a meeting between two parties.  When we pray, we meet with God.  “Our Father who art in Heaven.”

 

2. To light upon. We move from the natural to the supernatural and from infinite ability to infinite ability, taking hold of situations to accomplish the will of God.

 

3. To fall upon. To attack, strike down, and cut down.  So intercession is an offensive weapon.  It is to bring heavenly supernatural warfare into life situations spiritually or physically.

 

4. And lastly paga means to “strike the mark.”

 

 

Intercession, therefore, releases the Glory of God into a desired specific situation and it “strikes the mark” with His presence.  It is laser beam prayer.

 

The thing is, we all can do it.  We all can intercede and operate in the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit.  Today I believe that we in the church have been so distracted by so much that is going on in this world that we have moved into a preservation mode of operation, or living.  We just don’t want to deal with stuff.  We believe we have enough on our plates already.  Many of us do!  And you’re probably thinking, “you want to add something else I should be doing?  I can’t keep up now?”

 

But as believers in Jesus Christ, as sons and daughters of the Living God, we have at our disposal all the weapons of warfare needed to intervene when the time arises.  Really with not a lot of effort on our part except listening and speaking.

 

2Corinthians 10:3-4, “For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh.  For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds.”  I speak this verse all of the time.

 

Since my flesh isn’t a part of this waring, but just the Spirit, I can give effort in that Spirit to pray, even if it a short time.  I believe we want to pray at length, but short prayers are just as effective.  The Word of God is power.  The Name of Jesus is power. 

 

I also think at times; we don’t see the importance of our position in Christ. The Watchmen of their day knew the importance of their position. 

 

They weren’t in a position to be running into any battle.  They were already behind fortifications.   We are already behind fortifications. Running into a fight, to me that is foolishness. These watchmen weren’t looking for a fight.  

 

But they were aware of their surroundings.  They knew where they lived.  They knew the landscape.  When something came over the horizon and they saw it, then they moved if needed.

 

For us it is no different.  Our weapons of warfare are not carnal, they are spiritual.  We may see things in the physical that will direct our attention, but that attention should cause us to move into the spiritual.  A couple weeks ago when the pastor’s met, we spoke of what we felt was going on in our community, spiritually. We have prophetic pastors there, they shared their thoughts.  We have those who have knowledge, and we have the intercessors.

 

We brought that all those thoughts together to pray and intercede for the community.  We intercede weekly for our communities, and the Holy Spirit gives us insight.  A couple weeks ago there was much going on in Kenosha, a stabbing in a high school for one, and much other violence throughout the City. 

 

We the “Watchers” interceded. Did you know that a weeks ago is one of the biggest weeks for satanic activity? Truthfully I was unaware.  Another pastor became aware of that and told us.  I was thinking Halloween was bad. But we have known for years that Kenosha has had a satanic stronghold over the city.  There is satanic culture here.  So as watchmen we pray, and pray in the Spirit to move that culture out.

 

And when we pray, please take note, we do not cast this out and throw that out, we pray the Word of God. The Word of God is what breaks strongholds, and casts down vain imaginations against promises of God.  As a watchman for my church and those I come in contact with, when I see conflict, and a stronghold over someone’s life, I pray the Word of God over them to see their freedom.  We can pray those promises over ourselves too.  That is our fortress.  That is the wall we stand behind.  We let the supernatural army of God fight our battles.  Those supernatural battles cause effects in the physical.

 

For we wrestle not against flesh or blood, so we do not wrestle in our flesh and blood.  We stand in the truth of God’s Word, and let God’s Word do the work.

 

God let me experience something back in my twenty’s.  Back when I wanted to be this demon slayer or whatever I was foolishly thinking.  Back in the late 70’s and early eighties a portion of the church was really into warfare, fighting the devil.  Well I was all pumped up about it but went at it the wrong way.  I was operating with zeal, but in my own wisdom and strength, so God let me experience a physical confrontation with a spirit entity.  I surely wasn’t in the spirit in what I was trying to do, so God let me deal with it physically.  He let me physically wrestle with something that was not flesh and blood, and after I screaming for Jesus, and the entity flew off of me, I repented a thousand times for my foolishness, and decided that maybe I should learn God’s ways of handling darkness when needed.  Let God deal with it.  Stand, but stand behind the wall.  We pray.  We intercede, and we do it by the Word of God.  Jesus spoke the Word of God when tempted by Satan, what happened, Satan had to leave, he couldn’t stand up to the Word of God.

 

But we are all called to be watchmen, not just the church leaders.  Especially those of us who are grounded in Christ and His Word.  Jesus gave us gifts, and the awareness of the Holy Spirit to see and hear, to speak life through love into situations.  Jesus also wants us to have a prayer life and be connected into Him.  His Holy Spirit will then make us aware, to know the times, to see in the Spirit so that we can intervene either by prophetic word, or through a spiritual gift, or by intercession.  

 

Jesus loves us so much that He did not leave us unprepared in this messed up world.  He gave us the Holy Spirit to speak boldly the Word of God with power to alter this world with the love of God to ever be watchful to intervene for those in need.  Amen!

Let’s pray!

 

 

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