This collection of articles covers the topic of Restoration, which means "restoring the authority and apostolic leadership to the global Church". It has other and deeper implications too, as can be seen by the articles on warring in the heavenlies (to pull down the satanic strongholds that restrict the church) and "The Glory" (which is a skewed belief that the full power and visible glory of God will ultimately descend upon the restored Church.)
The two main Dominion movements are Christian Reconstructionism and Kingdom Now Theology. Though these two movements differ greatly in their general theological orientation (the first is strongly Reformed and Neo-Calvinistic, the second is Charismatic), they share a postmillennial vision in which the Kingdom of God will be established on Earth through political, spiritual and in some extreme cases military means.
Dominion Theology and Restoration today has progressed far beyond the reach of these early articles of mine; however it is always good to refer to the roots of the movement, and to understand its core objectives.
Topics covered in this section are: Gatekeepers and Spiritual Warfare, Restorationism, Shepherding, Kingdom Theology and its proponents, historical roots such as Gnosticism, Sonship and the Latter Rain, the coming glorification of the ascended saints, and the part that the Toronto revival and such things as Celtic Mysticism have to play.
The Gates and Gatekeepers of the New Order (By Tricia Tillin)
- What is the teaching on Gatekeepers?
- Who is the porter in scripture?
- Types of Gatekeepers
- Duties of Gatekeepers
- The Divine Visitor - The Glory Cloud
- A Christian 'Great Invocation'
- The Keys of David
- (copyright information)
Paul complained about the Athenians that they enjoyed nothing so much as some ear-tickling novelty, some new doctrine or philosophy to keep their interest in religion fresh. (Acts 17:21) I feel it’s much the same with churches now.
One of these new doctrines is teaching on the GATEKEEPERS and it’s emerging as usual from the aligned revivalist/apostolic churches (churches of the New Order as I shall call them, because that was their chosen title the first time around, in the Latter-Rain revival of 1940’s).
It is being said that the Church has gatekeeper ministries, possessing the “keys of David” to open and shut spiritual portals; that these gatekeepers can lock out evil and let in righteousness, both in heaven and on earth; that they can even open the gates of heaven to bring back the “king of glory”!
What is the teaching on Gatekeepers?
Until recently, nobody had considered gatekeepers as an office in the Church. Where has this teaching come from? It is, as is often the case with supposed new revelations, based on symbolism and allegory instead of the plain literal understanding of scripture. And, again typically, scriptures and prophecies have been given a new context outside their proper meaning.
The teaching is based on references in the Old Testament to gatekeepers of the City and Temple, and on references to the “key of David” and the “keys to the kingdom” in the New Testament. Another scripture used is this:
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out."
From the passage above it is being taught that:
“the shepherd brings the sheep and then he comes to the sheep fold. Here you have what is called a gatekeeper. There is a gate there. Interestingly enough it says, the gatekeeper will open the gate for the shepherd. What we have done is we have made gatekeeper and shepherd synonymous. But it is very clear in the Bible they are different ministries. Actually in function, one is a position and one is a gift. (Shepherds, Gatekeepers & Walls Tape #175 World Harvest Church Lloyd Phillips Fellow Laborers' Int'l Network (FLInt Net)
Is this really so? Is the Porter or Gatekeeper of this passage a vital ministry gift? What did Jesus intend to convey in this parable?
The central message of this passage of scripture is that ONLY through and in Jesus Christ is there any hope of eternal life and blessing in God. Salvation and admittance to God’s House is ONLY through Jesus Christ!
"Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture."
Jesus taught that ONLY he was the legal guardian of the sheep and the WAY by which they entered the sheepfold of God. All others who offered an alternative route into the sheepfold were liars. Any route to salvation that does not pass through Jesus Christ as the Door or Gate to heaven is a lie.
"But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out."
The word used for porter (KJV) or gatekeeper (LB) or doorkeeper (NAS) or watchman (NIV) is thuroros from thura (portal, gate or door) and ouros (a watcher) hence thuroros is a person who watches at the door or entrance, usually to open and shut to door to authorised callers, but also to guard the entranceway and stop illegal entry. We see something like this in the BOUNCERS who stand at the doors of discos and clubs in the city.
Who is the Porter?
What, then, did Jesus mean by the “gatekeeper”? Although there are different interpretations of this passage, most biblical scholars and commentators are agreed on the basic principle. Matthew Henry’s commentary has this to say: “To him the porter openeth, v. 3. Anciently they had their sheepfolds within the outer gates of their houses, for the greater safety of their flocks, so that none could come to them the right way, but such as the porter opened to or the master of the house gave the keys to.”
Vincent's Word Studies of the New Testament points out that the Porter is: “An under-shepherd, to whose charge the sheep are committed after they have been folded for the night, and who opens the door on the arrival of the shepherd in the morning.”
Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament likewise says: “[Thuroros is] an old word for doorkeeper. The porter has charge of the sheep in the fold at night and opens the door in the morning for the shepherd. It is not certain that Jesus meant this detail to have a special application. The Holy Spirit, of course, does open the door of our hearts for Jesus through various agencies.
In the richer houses of Palestine, a guard would be employed to stop thieves getting into the house, and to open the door to bona fide entrants, members of the household (including the Shepherd who had come to let the sheep out in the morning or settle them safely in the fold for the night).
Looking at this from a spiritual standpoint, with Jesus as the Shepherd, and the Kingdom of God as the Sheepfold, (Luke 13:24-30/Rev 22:14) then it seems plain that the Porter or one who allows entry is the Holy Spirit – for no man comes to the Father by Jesus Christ unless he is drawn there by God the Holy Spirit and no man enters into eternal life unless admitted by the power and agency of the Holy Spirit. (1 Cor 12:3/ Titus 3:5-6) The Holy Spirit is the only one who knows men’s hearts and knows whether a person should be admitted into the kingdom of God.
It has been argued that ministers of the gospel have been given the “keys of the kingdom” and are therefore the gatekeepers who allow converts to enter the kingdom of God. However, even if men and women are instrumental in proclaiming the gospel message, it is still the Holy Spirit who brings the words to life and makes them effective, who draws, convicts, converts and ushers into the kingdom. Therefore I feel it’s most appropriate to see the Holy Spirit as the keeper of the door to heaven.
Only the Holy Spirit of God has the wisdom and understanding required to admit or refuse mankind at the Gates of Heaven! That is what makes the following information so disturbing.
Gatekeepers as Men and Women
It is now being taught from this passage of scripture that God has placed in the Body, the Church, both pastors (shepherds – a position) and gatekeepers (a gift.) It is said that the gift of a gatekeeper is to “open the gate”, and this covers a multitude of activities. In spiritual warfare it would mean opening and closing heavenly places; in the Body it would mean opening the way for the glory of the Lord to enter; in the world it would mean opening the floodgates to the new revelations and new paradigms that represent the kingdom of God on earth. All this and more is now being claimed for the Gatekeepers. We need to know what is going on.
Types of Gatekeepers and their tasks
Cheryl McGrath of Great South Land Ministries [pro-revival] has some teaching that helps us delineate the various aspects of the Gatekeepers doctrine, from their standpoint. She speaks of six main areas in which she sees gatekeepers operating today, all based on an allegorical interpretation of scripture.
1. Spiritual guardians of localities: “many are called to be gatekeepers and watchmen over their cities and nations”
2. Leadership strategies: “the gates of a city were the place of decision making. The gates were the place the elders of the city met to consider important matters.”
3. Prophetic proclamation: “the gates of a city were places where prophetic words were proclaimed (Jer. 17:19); where the King sat (2 Samuel 18:24) and where sometimes there were high places of pagan worship (2 Kings 23:8).”
4. Priests who open and close the doors of God’s Temple: “these were chosen from the Levitical priesthood and were set in place by the prophetic office under the authority of the King.”
5. Guardians who hold the keys of the kingdom “gatekeepers were responsible for guarding the house of the Lord, (v.23) and held the keys to the Lord's house (v. 27). Keys in scripture represent authority. Jesus gave us the keys of the Kingdom (Matthew 16:19) This was authority to establish Kingdom rule on earth.”
6. Opening of spiritual portals of various kinds “there is a sense in which the scriptures speak about gates as portals or openings into the heavenlies, as Jacob discovered. He said:’How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven!’ (Genesis 28:11-17). Not all of these gates are portals we would want to open, however! Both Job 38:17 and Psalm 9:13 speak of "gates of death". (For a fuller study on this subject see George Otis Jnr.'s "The Twilight Labyrinth.") The gates of the Lord, however, are gates of righteousness and may be entered by the righteous. (Psalm 118:20)”
Duties of the gatekeepers
- Intercessors--pulling down strongholds by spirit-filled prayer [includes musicians]
- Apostolic provision--bringing in the wealth stored up for kingdom work
- Prophetic proclamation--announcing God's purposes
- Warriors--soldiers with a warrior's heart [spiritual warfare]
- Apostolic leaders--bring forth divine doctrine and government
I will look more closely at some of these aspects later. But for now, I want to point out one major area that crops up frequently as the Gatekeeper’s role – that of opening the gates for the “King of Glory”
The Divine Visitor – The Glory Cloud?
Biblically literate Christians would think of opening the gate or door and “letting Christ in” as initially receiving Jesus as Saviour, and then of allowing Him to minister to our hearts, lead us, teach us and so forth. That is the result of thinking along the conventional biblical lines. The Gatekeeper, therefore, would be the Holy Spirit.
But remember that the new teachings are increasingly based around the novel concept of Jesus (or, God the Spirit, the Shekinah) returning to his church AS THE GLORY CLOUD, visibly, tangibly and in reality, in order to create for Himself a Throne on the earth. (See my series on The Glory for further details.)
This same teaching tape from which the first quote was taken makes that point very clear:
“God is not going to stand between you and me, but He will come and His glory will be around us to protect us and He always comes in a cloud… You are called to … build that Temple with those Living Stones. Those ministries are to come in and fit those stones in that wall of that Temple where the glory is inside, where the Lord comes and visits His people , where the Lord dwells within us. In the Old Testament He said, "I want a temple so I can dwell among My people."… But Paul said in Corinthians, "He wants a temple now where He can dwell IN His people.”"He is bringing forth His church of glory. The third temple is arising. It is the tabernacle of David, the fallen hut. He is repairing the breeches [sic] and raising up the walls, preparing a holy habitation for His shekinah glory. Let the church arise to its heritage and make ready the way of the Lord. Lift up your heads o ye gates and the King of Glory shall come in, the Lord of Hosts, mighty in battle!" (Word In Due Season prophecies)
Remembering this, we can view the gatekeeper “gift” from a different and new angle, for he or she is supposedly opening the gates for the Glory Cloud to come down upon and within the Church, in an endtimes Epiphany to outdo all the others! Hence the oft-quoted verses from Psalm 24:7 “Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.”
"For The Cloud of My Glory is moving towards the Earth - Is moving Towards you my people. My gatekeepers - Open The Gates - Swing Wide The Gates - For into your hands I have given The Keys of Life. …Yes the Cloud of presence is moving towards the earth - Is moving towards you my people. Prepare a Habitation unto the Lord - Make your house ready for I AM Coming to inhabit you my people." (Dave Howe - August 31st 2000. WellSpring Ministries England)
Restoring the nations
There is also a wider application of these scriptures. As well as calling forth the Glory Cloud to fill the Church, the Gatekeepers are said to be establishing the Kingdom of God on the earth. These two events are often seen as synonymous in prophetic literature. The keys that open spiritual gates apparently also work in the secular world to create opportunities to advance the New Order there.
Gatekeepers are also called Josephs and Daniels, two men who became politically powerful on behalf of God’s people. Part of their role is to create a transfer of wealth to fund the “kingdom”.
“The Josephs and Daniels of today are persons who have been prepared and raised up to meet the unusual needs of the era we have entered. These men and women of God are anointed business and government leaders who… like Joseph and Daniel of old will be recognized and respected by the people of the world they work with…There will be unusual strategic alliances established between the Josephs and Daniels and key persons of the world they will be brought to work along side the King Cyruses and Pharaohs. The Cyruses and Pharaohs will serve as gatekeepers to open the gates to unusual opportunities - opportunities that would not be feasible otherwise. The resulting deals, transactions and ventures will further and greatly enhance the Kingdom of God in some very strategic ways….May the transactions and ventures under way become the gateways into further means to create ongoing revenue streams for the strategic kingdom activities of our day.” JTL Ministries www.keepersofhisgates.com
“You are as the 'gates'…. You are the financial, administrative, logistical/ technical, legal, security, social/spiritual and operational 'managers' of the Kingdom. Your secular work is not 'just a job'. Your ministry is not 'just some work for God'. According to My purposes, I have placed you where you are. Hear and obey My voice throughout your day so that everything you do is to the benefit of the Kingdom - be My "Josephs" and My "Daniels". (Petru, via Godspeak.org)
Jill Austin sees America itself as a Gatekeeper, whose role is to open the gates of righteousness to the whole world!
“We are called to be a Gatekeeper Nation to maintain world peace. America has a destiny in God as one who will fight for the disenfranchised, with the economic might of our wealth and resources. That mantle rests upon us so the world watches and waits to see what we’ll do.”
By their activities, Gatekeepers believe they are preparing the way for the Lord to return to earth as King and Judge over the nations. (We should ask ourselves which “lord” they are in fact calling for and bringing forth? It appears to be “the glory” rather than the physical and actual bodily return of the Lord Jesus!)
“’Open up the Ancient Gates’ I heard from behind me as two strong hands grabbed my shoulders as he shook me and laughed. ‘The tabernacle will be restored. A holy priesthood shall be established that serves the King of Glory on his mountain and in his pavilion. A royal priesthood anointed and separated and commissioned in their service. All nations will bow before the king of glory who shall enter through the ancient gates. The king of glory who is mighty in battle. Who comes in righteousness with a sword to judge his servants and to make war upon the nations. Faithful and true is the king of glory’.” (Bob Neuman)
“This is what the Lord, the Creator, the Holy One of Israel says: ‘Gatekeepers! Rise up and Go! OPEN UP THE GATES! OPEN UP THE GATES THAT THE KING OF GLORY MAY COME IN! I have given you the keys to the Kingdom and what you open in My Name no one can shut! OPEN UP THE GATES! Open up the gates to your cities, to your regions, to your nations, to your hearts! OPEN UP THE GATES! Open the gates because I will not be held back any longer! I am about to come as a pent up flood! The waters are about to break forth. The rain is about to pour. These are as the days of Noah - open the gates that all who will may run into the ark of my Presence’”. (Diane Bahler)
It should be obvious to serious bible students that no man or woman can “bring back” nor “call forth” nor arrange for the return of the Lord of All, and the timing of His return is not dependent on how much spiritual warfare or intercession is achieved in the churches.
It has been said (based on a misinterpretation of scripture) that Jesus CANNOT return until the Church has achieved her mission of christianising the world and ridding it of God’s enemies, that He is “held” in the heavens until the church and earth is “restored” and comes into her Golden Age. This is so far from the truth as to be heretical! In fact, the bible plainly says that the hallmarks of the Return of Jesus are widespread apostasy (a falling away from the faith) increasing wickedness, catastrophes, and chaos – far from a Golden Age.
A Christian Great Invocation?
We ought to be deeply worried about any attempt to achieve this kind of event. When I read these exhortations I wonder what spirit inspired them, as I am familiar with the “Great Invocation” circulated by the Lucis Trust (New-Agers) which in a very similar way calls forth light and truth as a flood, and also seeks to “shut the doors” against evil.
Has the Church been led into reciting a Christian version of the Invocation – which in reality is a spell or chant to invoke the Antichrist! Compare the activity of people like Cindy Jacobs, Bill Hamon, Chuck Pierce and Dutch Sheets with the Great invocation:
[Cindy Jacobs] Mercy! Mercy! Let Your light come! Let Your truth come! Let Your anointing fall! Let your wind come! Let your wind blow! Let evil be dispersed, O God! Let the strongholds of darkness be pushed back! Push them back, Lord! We say, Open the gates in the East! Open the gates in the East! Open the gates in the East! Open the gates in the East! OPEN! OPEN! OPEN! OPEN UP! OPEN UP! Gates of the Lord, Open! In the name of Jesus, Open! Gates of the Lord, Open! Open, Lord, Open.
[Chuck Pierce:] We declare great conversion! Great conversion! Great conversion of Islam!
[Dutch Sheets] Yes! We call forth Your glory over that city! We call forth Your light! We call forth truth! We call forth brotherly love and harmony! We break down greed, materialism, power, racial strife, and division! We call it all down in Jesus’ name, poverty, hatred, division, strife! We pull it down in Jesus’ name!
Now, we just say, let our prayers go forth like missiles, guided missiles and smart bombs. Lord, You know where they need to go. And You just take them and direct them by Your Spirit. We say, in Jesus’ name, they will hit the mark! Every Gate on the East Coast, the Eastern Gate, we say, Open Up, in Jesus’ name, to the Spirit of the Lord! Open Up! Open Up! Gates of Righteousness, Psalm 118, the Gates of Righteousness, we command you to open on the Eastern Seaboard, the Eastern Coast. Open Up! Let the glory of the Lord come, in Jesus’ name.
We send forth the arrow of the Lord’s deliverance to the Eastern Coast of the United States of America. We say, as a laser of the Spirit, that the lightning of God will go forth and penetrate, penetrate, penetrate! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! The breaker anointing! We call on the breaker anointing, to break through for us. We ask You Lord right now, we ask You for angelic hosts to be released to the Eastern Coast. We ask You for legions of angels, hosts, myriads of angels! Lord of Hosts, send a host of angels, warring angels, to the Eastern Coast, to unlock the Gates of Righteousness! OPEN! OPEN! OPEN! Yes!
[Bill Hamon:] Amen. Father, as a father of the prophetic, we release the prophetic supernatural signs and wonders and apostolic miracles. We open the Eastern Gate, and let the King of Glory come in! Come in! Come in! Come in! Come in! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Halleluia! Yeah! Wow! All right!
THE GREAT INVOCATION
From the point of LIGHT within the mind of God
Let light stream forth into the minds of men
Let Light descend on earth.
From the point of LOVE within the heart of God
Let love stream forth into the hearts of men [see Part Two!]
May Christ return to earth.
From the centre where the WILL of God is knows
Let purpose guide the little wills of men
The purpose which the Masters know and serve.
From the centre which we call the race of men
Let the Plan of Love and Light work out
And may it seal the door where evil dwells
Let Light and Love and Power restore the Plan on Earth.
Both New-Age and Christian warriors and intercessors now believe they can, by their activities, OPEN THE GATES for an outpouring of light, truth and goodwill, and CLOSE THE GATES against evil. Bill Burns in his piece on the “Third Day Church” written in October 2000 says this: “Notice that the key of David is used to open and close spiritual doors. To open doors into the blessings of the Father's kingdom, and to close the doors that the enemy uses against God's people.”
“Beloved, by My Shed Blood, Righteousness and Authority I have given you jurisdiction, dominion and power - you have all that you require to rule and reign on earth on My behalf. I have made you to be both as gates and as gatekeepers. You have the keys - My authority. You are as the 'gate keepers'. It is through your prayers, words & deeds as Kingdom representatives that unbelievers are drawn into the Kingdom. Yes My grace extends to all but you are as 'extensions' of My grace. …I am as the wall - you are as the gates and gatekeepers. Establishing & maintaining Our Kingdom requires a partnership between Me and you.” (Petru, Godspeak Prophetic School)
One of the tasks of these newly-appointed Gatekeepers is to use the “keys of David” usually taken as identical to the “keys of the kingdom” to establish and maintain that kingdom on earth. In other words, the Gatekeepers are in some cases Apostles with spiritual authority to RULE.
“To Him the doorkeeper opens, the gatekeeper. In the Bible the gatekeepers were the elders of the city. There was some respect that went with that position. They were the elders , they would sit in the gate, that's where decisions would be made for that city.” (Shepherds, Gatekeepers & Walls Tape #175 World Harvest Church Lloyd Phillips Fellow Laborers' Int'l Network (FLInt Net)
In a ritualistic piece of spiritual warfare that I shall look at shortly, “apostle” Tommy Tenney and Bart Pierce led pastors and elders to stake a claim to their cities and proclaim righteousness over them. They were (as they believed) establishing the kingdom rule in their localities:
“Tommy explained that before you take possession of a property a survey is taken and stakes are driven at the borders of the property. The pastors being the gatekeepers of a city should choose the locations for the stakes and should be the ones to swing the sledge hammer to drive the stakes deep into the earth. [The pastors then say]: We proclaim this day that this city is now under the power and ownership of the Holy Spirit. All other spirits are hereby given notice and are evicted from this property by the power of the name of Jesus.” (Baltimore Stake-out, David T Jehl Feb 1998)
“Now, let us hear the word of the Lord: Arise you who are called to be gatekeepers in the Tabernacle of David. This is the hour that you have longed for. This is the day of My power that David spoke of (Psalm 110. Now you shall carry the rod of My strength out of Zion, and you shall rule in the midst of your enemies, for to you it has been given the power of binding the enemy and loosing the captive. …. Open now your hand and receive the keys of authoritative power which I give to My servants, the gatekeepers, the keys of David!” (Bill Burns)
But the keys of David belong to DAVID only. The prophetic “David” is the only One who has come in the line of David, as the heir to David’s throne – Jesus the Saviour! In the book of Revelation we see exactly who owns the keys of David. It is not gatekeepers in the Church, but Jesus the Lord:
Rev 1:18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.
Rev 3:7 And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth;)
Yet Bill Burns and others claim that men and women in the churches, gatekeepers, are now the ones who own and use the keys of David:
This church is listening to the gatekeepers who are watchmen, who can open and no one shuts, and shuts and no one opens” (The Gatekeepers, Bill Burns May 2000)
CONTINUE TO THE SECOND PORTION OF THIS ARTICLE
(c) Tricia Tillin 2001
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