For some time I have been hearing a call for watchmen to arise and stand for the territory – the people – God has given them responsibility for.
It reminded me of a prophetic vision shared with Transforming Melbourne on 10.11.09 by Lois Isaachsen about watchmen on a watchtower in a vineyard. On 1.1.13 God gave Lois further revelation on this…
First Vision of the Vineyard:
THE CALL TO WARN against things that harm the vine – our ability to produce good fruit. (10.11.09 Lois Isaachsen)
I saw a wooden watchtower in the centre of a vineyard. The Lord said this wooden tower has to be solid on the base and must be built quickly and now! He said the vineyard surrounding this tower is the Church. The purpose of the watchtower was to watch for enemy or any danger approaching and warn the people working in the vineyard. There was a sense that this is imminent.
The tower had 360o visibility. There were four people on watch at any one time – covering the North, South, East, West – all points of the compass. Different people climbed steps up to the tower taking turns – like a changing of the guard.
The watchmen had macro and micro vision. They had binoculars and were able to see from afar but also to see close up detail in the vineyard. Close up they could see dangers like dieback in the vines, wild vines growing rapidly from under the grafting – mixing and choking real vines; unskilled gardeners, worms from under the soil devouring leaves and laying eggs. From a distance they could see coming frost, fire and locusts – which are competitors.
To declare the danger and warn the Church the watchmen rang a bell. The people on the ground would come to the tower to hear the details of the message and then ran out from the tower through the vineyard to all the areas where they lived and had responsibility. They were runners for the Kingdom of God; declarers who already knew what they were to do –get to the tower to hear the message when the bell rings and get the message to their areas of the vineyard.
Although the vineyard had many blocks of vines and paths between them, it was always known to be one plot of land owned by one owner. THE GRAND GARDENER is coming and the news is spread and that He is coming! (Joel 3:12) He is the Designer, the Organiser, the Owner, the Expert. At the end of each vine is a bottle on a wooden step waiting to be tasted by the GRAND GARDENER. He will judge the wine and his judgment will be perfect.” Note on the chosen illustration: The wooden tower in this vineyard is a water tower that needs immediate repair.
Second Vision of Vineyard:
WARRIORS READY FOR IMMINENT BATTLE when one with Jesus! (1.1.13 Lois Isaachsen)
The vineyard was shaped like a full circle cut into segments. Each segment was full of rows of vines, fully green and prolific. The centre of the circle was a 2 storey wooden tower. One person per segment was walking the length of the path separating the vine segments. They were walking slowly up each path from the centre out. I realised the vines were ripe, very ripe and very lush green.
I wondered if this is the harvest ripe for picking that the Lord speaks of and for us to pray to be sent out. I sensed it wasn’t that harvest! Then I heard the sounds of feet marching on the spot, it was quite a loud noise and even the sound of metal armour cluncking! There were no people around and so I couldn’t see any army. Then I realised the vines were marching on the spot. It was a bit weird. So I asked the Lord to take it from me. I waited quietly again. It happened again!
I wondered how vines could be an army but then I knew that this was a representation of people ready for battle. These people although not visible were attached to the vine and had become enriched by God Himself and He had tended these vines using chosen gardeners over a period of time. They were one with the vine. I wondered if it was the churches ready for His return, or groups of Christians from around the world and each segment was a country. I didn’t conclude anything and wasn’t told, except that they are warriors made ready by God Himself and there was a battle imminent. One thing about this scene – there was no commander, no great up front leader – only rows of green vine leaves, all the same height and thickness over the whole circle!
It was in fact a very encouraging vision because it is getting darker in the world around us and people’s minds are void of God – they are not even caring about Him. God does have a battle and a plan – and those who stay close to Him and are attached to Jesus Christ our vine, will be used together with other Christians to do battle. This time is at hand. Stay close to the Lord, cling to Him and be aware you are not alone. We will need the food of His presence to sustain us. He is everything we need for this battle which is to come.
These are some of my thoughts. You may like to post a reply with your own reflections on this.
I have posted watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem; they will never be silent day or night. You who call on the LORD, give yourselves no rest, and give him no rest till he establishes Jerusalem and makes her the praise of the earth. (Isaiah 62:6-7)
My sons do not be negligent now, for the Lord has chosen you to stand before him and serve him, to minister before him and to burn incense. (2Chronicles 29:11)
Listen! Your watchmen lift up their voices; together they shout for joy. When the LORD returns to Zion, they will see it with their own eyes. (Isaiah 52:8)
Unpack with God what being a watchman means for you. A study of Isaiah 58 may be helpful. If you are called to pray for your family, neighbours or other territory – commit to be faithful in this serious role for the allotted watch or season.
Tom Hess said, True watchmen watch God! Remember how the young warrior, David approached Goliath – in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel. We too can say, All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he gives victory into our hands.” (1 Samuel 17:45-47)
Like God’s Son, we watch to see what our Father is doing and saying; we agree with our Father’s will, we welcome the manifest presence of the Spirit of Christ and bless all Jesus is doing in heaven and on earth; engaging only in what our Lord invites us to do, so our burden is light.
Unless the LORD builds the house, its builders labour in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain. (Psalm 127:1)
In 2Peter 1:12-21 we are reminded to heed the testimony of the eyewitnesses, those who hear His voice; and the prophetic message – something completely reliable, we will do well to pay attention to, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.”
Christ is Our Shield and Weaponry
Our security is in Christ so the watch tower is a place of intimate restoration and restfulness, as well as alertness.
Be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. Put on the full armour of God so you can take your stand…. (Ephesians 6:10-18)
Christ be with me, Christ within me, Christ behind me, Christ before me, Christ beside me, Christ to win me, Christ to comfort and restore me. Christ beneath me, Christ above me, Christ in quiet, Christ in danger, Christ in hearts of all that love me, Christ in mouth of friend and stranger. (From Patrick’s Breastplate.)
His Watchtower – our Stronghold!
We watch from a high place – seated with our Lord in His righteousness and so we see from His perspective and we see what is on His heart – what matters to Him. (Eph 2:6, Col 3:1-3)
My soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning, more than watchmen wait for the morning. (Psalm 130:6) The name of the Lord is a fortified tower; the righteous run to it and are safe. (Proverbs 18:10)
The term stronghold is almost always used as a positive place in Scripture – reminding us of the strength with which we are held by God. Our weapons include soft answers, meekness, gentleness, kindness and joy.
Who Do You Watch With?
We do not watch alone.
I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. (John 15:1-4)
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. (Hebrews 12: 1-2)
The Lord has established his throne in heaven, and his kingdom rules over all. Praise the Lord, you his angels, you mighty ones who do his bidding, who obey his word. Praise the Lord, all his heavenly hosts, you his servants who do his will. Praise the Lord, all his works everywhere in his dominion. Praise the Lord, my soul. (Psalm 103:19-22)
We are to pray in agreement with others and interpret what we discern in agreement with others. There are times when we need to respond to the trumpeter’s call for reinforcement.
I appointed watchmen over you and said, ‘Listen to the sound of the trumpet!‘ (Jeremiah 6:17) Wherever you hear the sound of the trumpet, join us there. Our God will fight for us! (Nehemiah 4:20)
Watchmen need to be able to report what is seen to elders who can decipher and sound the warning.
Let us know if you are a watchman so we can stand with you! We may be able to connect you with others who can stand shoulder to shoulder in your region and nationally.