No I am not talking about the Disney character Ariel, but Jerusalem, the church of the living God. A few months ago whilst waiting on the Lord He said to me that “Isaiah 29 is relevant for this time”. Of course knowing the Word, I knew straight away that Isaiah 29 begins with “Woe to Ariel”! Ariel is the code name for Jerusalem of which there are two: Jerusalem above and Jerusalem below. Prophetic scriptures are amazing in that they speak to the natural and to the spiritual. And since I am a citizen of the spiritual Jerusalem through new birth via faith in Jesus Christ I want to bring comfort to my fellow citizens. The cry comes forth from the heart of Jesus–“Ariel Oh Ariel!!!
Just as Jesus must have groaned when in the natural city of Jerusalem which opposed Him and killed Him so He groans over us His abiding place forever.
37 “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem—you are the city that murders your prophets! You are the city that stones the very messengers who were sent to deliver you! So many times I have longed to gather a wayward people, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings—but you were too stubborn to let me. 38 And now it is too late, since your city will be left in ruins.39 For you will not see me again until you are able to say, ‘We welcome the one who comes to us in the name of the Lord.’”TPT
O Jerusalem Jerusalem!! groans Jesus…..O Ariel Ariel—woe to you Ariel!!
God longs to gather wayward people to Himself but we are “too stubborn to let Him” the Passion Translation says. What does that tell you about the will of man and God’s sovereignty? God will not force anyone to come to Jesus. All groups that use coercion to force people to convert are not representing God’s heart. God must bring people to the place where they are ready to cry to God for help.
God wants to gather His chicks under His wings so that they are hidden with Christ inside of God.(Col 3:3,4) So that the only life they know is Christ Jesus--one in spirit, soul and body. But we are wayward. We go our own way. We try to live apart from Jesus—-this equals waywardness. Thus the believer in Jesus can be just as wayward as the Jewish nation He addressed in Matthew 23:37 above.
If you are still not understanding what I am saying let me say it again.
The Pharisees Jesus wrestled with in Matthew 23 declaring all the “woe to you” statements were Law abiding people who loved God. Yet Jesus found many things against them. He longed for them to allow God to gather them into Himself. But they would not let God do that. They preferred to try to serve God in their own strength so as to establish their own righteousness based upon keeping the Law.
10 My beloved brothers and sisters, the passionate desire of my heart and constant prayer to God is for my fellow Israelites to experience salvation. 2 For I know that although they are deeply devoted to God, they are unenlightened. 3 And since they’ve ignored the righteousness God gives, wanting instead to be acceptable to God because of their own works, they’ve refused to submit to God’s faith-righteousness.TPT
They refuse to submit to God’s righteousness as revealed and obtained through receiving Jesus Christ of Nazareth into the heart. But dear Christian believer–this also applies to all Christians who are still refusing to accept Jesus as their only righteousness. We have been bewitched by centuries of Law based preaching….but not only that , we have also accepted the idea that we have our own life in us that opposes God’s Life, we call it the flesh. Thus because we think of ourselves as having two lives inside us–one being the flesh and the other being Christ..we think we must die to that old life in order to live in the new.
Those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with it’s passions and lusts. The Cross dealt with all that is not Christ but we still must walk by faith in the new man. The old man has been crucified. We are now ONLY A NEW MAN…we are not old and new, but all new. The greater proportion of the church still think that we are the old man trying with God’s help to become the new man. Thus we are wayward children. In all our religious efforts to be like the New Man(Jesus) we fail. Why? Because we are not resting in the finished work accomplished for us.
The more we try to be like Jesus the more we build a false righteousness around ourselves like a mighty wall around a city. This wall is built to keep GOD OUT!! This false righteousness based upon our Christian efforts is to keep God away from us. Those walls are going to be brought down!!
God’s answer for waywardness
Siege mounds and enemies, afflictions and trials, tribulations and buffetings. Read the following prophetic utterance of the Holy Spirit through brother Isaiah and instead of only thinking about the natural city of Jerusalem being brought low, think of the church of Jesus Christ.
29 “Woe to Ariel—Ariel, the town where David encamped!
Go ahead—keep your annual feasts,
and year after year celebrate your annual festivals.
2 I will bring distress to Ariel and there will be great mourning.
Jerusalem will be to me like what the name Ariel means—a burning altar hearth.
3 I will lay siege to you on all sides, encircling you with towers
and raising up my siege works against you.
4 Brought low, you will speak from the dust of the earth.
Your voice will be heard speaking from the ground,
and like the voice of a ghost, you will whisper out of the dust.
5 Then suddenly, in an instant, your ruthless enemies
will become nothing more than dust in the wind
and your vile tyrants like wind-driven chaff!
6 She will be visited by the Lord Yahweh,
Commander of Angel Armies,
with thunder, earthquake, and deafening noise,
with whirlwind, tempest, and the blaze of a consuming fire!
7 As quickly as a fading dream or as fleeting as a vision of the night,
so will all the vast hordes of all the nations fade away
and all who war against Ariel and her fortress disappear.
8 Just as a hungry man dreams that he is eating
but wakes up still hungry,
or as a thirsty man dreams that he is drinking
but wakes up weak and still longing for water,
so it will be for the vast hordes of all the nations
that fight against Mount Zion.” TPT
The siege against Jerusalem is as a siege around the church of Jesus Christ. The walls of self righteousness shall be brought down as the Church allows God to draw them to Himself into their UNION of oneness with Jesus Christ. The enemies vanish away like dust and chaff when we rest and abide inside of Jesus inside of Father.
The voice of boasting shall be brought to nothing. For us there is only one God -The FATHER and Jesus Christ whom He sent. But when we believe that we have our own little life which we must obey God with, we effectively are making ourselves the source of our strength–ie we make ourselves as God. But there is only ONE GOD. God opposes any other gods. Thus self righteousness is what characterises natural Jerusalem and it was destroyed as Jesus said it would be. Also…if there be any self righteousness in the Church it too shall be brought low into the dust of humiliation.
Rom3:19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. 20 Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.
And so in this time Isa 29 tells of the siege that shall surround the church for she has been brought under the Law and chooses to stay there. Thus the Law shall be amplified through Government imposition. Dictatorship–the full oppression of man-made law. Because we the Church have built God out by trying to be like Jesus in an imagined separated self, thinking we have the ability to serve God (with God’s help). Yet God will not ever help the old man. He opposes that dead thing!
A multitude of enemies are raised up against Ariel to bring her low so that her mouth is stopped. Once that has happened then light comes to us to cause us to see our union in Christ Jesus and what that means and who we really are. In seeing that, the enemies like dust vanish away!!
All things are working together for the good of those who are INSIDE of Christ Jesus. But those who wish to remain outside of Him, trying with all their might to serve Him through obeying laws, shall continue to experience the siege of God.
In the end surrender to God’s righteousness revealed and obtained freely through Jesus is the only victory. Ariel must go down into the dust to be raised again into the heavens where Christ is seated at the right hand of the Father.
The church of Jesus is in fact ALREADY raised up into Him….but while most still think of themselves as a separate entity responsible to serve God, the siege will continue until we surrender and cry out like Paul did –“O wretched man that I am!! Who shall deliver me? I thank God Christ Jesus has done it!! Therefore if you are IN UNION WITH CHRIST there is now no condemnation!!”
Wars cease when found resting in Him. Wars cease when we are found in our RIGHT(Christ)mind at the feet of Jesus.