“GOD’S PRIORITIES” – Roland Buck
(From “Angels on Assignment” – Charles & Frances Hunter)
On a recent visit, Gabriel had me write down seven things he referred to as “God’s Priorities.” Seven is God’s perfect number! I have reviewed these truths, fed on them, and mulled over them many times because they have been made so alive and real to me, and are in agreement with and supported completely by the Word of God.
When Gabriel had finished telling me this message of God’s top priorities, he said that they are so much a part of God’s plan that he had them all spelled out even before he made the world. He directed me to the twenty-third chapter of Leviticus, where God gave Moses plans for the tabernacle, a miniature model of his total plan. Then, to my amazement, he related every one of these priorities for us today, to the seven festivals God had given to Israel long ago!
I marveled at God’s recorded plans in the Old Testament which direct us to his plans for this day in which we live.
One. PRIORITY: THE BLOOD OF JESUS
FESTIVAL: THE PASSOVER OF THE LORD
This feast was a “type” of the death of Christ, his sacrifice, and the blood of Jesus that was so precious before God. It was written before God ever made the earth.
The bloodline of God and his family is the blood of Jesus, the thread of God’s redemption story throughout the entire Bible, his plan! The delivery of the children of Israel was made possible when blood was sprinkled on the lintel and the side panels for a covering so that the destroyer would pass over the homes and not kill the firstborn of each family. Our great Passover was provided when Jesus sprinkled his blood over the books in heaven to provide a covering for our sins so that we could be acceptable to God and be a part of his eternal family.
The first of God’s priorities which Gabriel gave me was about the BLOOD OF JESUS, and the first on the list of the seven annual special days of the Lord was the PASSOVER OF THE LORD!
Two. PRIORITY: FELLOWSHIP AND COMMUNION WITH GOD
FESTIVAL: THE FESTIVAL OF UNLEAVENED BREAD
This festival was to be celebrated beginning the day following the Passover. When Jesus provided deliverance from sin by his blood, God immediately provided a covering for our sins; not condoning of sin, but a provision so we could be accepted by him.
Leaven is a type of sin, and at the festival they were to eat unleavened bread, representing sin pardoned. Under the new covenant, leavened bread was used because God provided justification. Instead of SIN, FAULT and FAILURE, God sees, through the covering he provided, HOLINESS, BLAMELESSNESS and PERFECTION. Those who choose rebellion and idolatry voluntarily move out from under his covering. Those who choose obedience instead of rebellion voluntarily stay under his covering because they choose to love and serve God above self and above the desire to sin.
“For by that one offering he made forever perfect in the sight of God all those whom he is making holy. … And the Holy Spirit testifies that this is so, for he has said, ‘This is the agreement I will make with the people of Israel, though they broke their first agreement: I will write my laws into their minds so that they will always know my will, and I will put my laws in their hearts so that they will want to obey them.’ And then he adds, ‘I will never again remember their sins and lawless deeds’” (Hebrews 10:14-17 TLB).
Three. PRIORITY: JESUS IS ALIVE!
FESTIVAL: THE FESTIVAL OF FIRST FRUITS
Gabriel said this festival represents the resurrection of Jesus and his life. Not only is he alive, but it is already written down in God’s book that we who are his will follow after him in the great resurrection. It’s in God’s big heart!
Four. PRIORITY: THE PROMISE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
FESTIVAL: THE FESTIVAL OF PENTECOST
The coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost is not something that was a little afterthought in God’s mind. He had this all planned before he made the earth. The word “Pentecost” simply means fifty. It was fifty days after the Passover. When he told the disciples to tarry in Jerusalem, it wasn’t just a coincidence; it was God’s plan unfolding, and exactly fifty days after the Passover, something new and powerful happened!
At the Feast of the Passover, they were as individual stalks of wheat before the Lord. When the disciples were all assembled together in one place in Jerusalem, they were individuals. There was no blend. It was not a church yet.
Concerning the feast of Pentecost, God was saying, “Take the grain, grind it into flour, and turn it into bread. Put some leaven in it because the church will never be without sin or evil in it.” God has it covered, but on the underside of the covering where you live, sin often crops up.
He covers his church, even though sin (leaven) is present; by his Spirit and the power of the life-blood of Jesus, he cleanses it! By this he was saying, “I want you to grind the wheat and turn it into flour and make some loaves of bread. Make a strong unit which is called my body of believers instead of having individual, separate believers. My body is going to come together by the power of the Holy Spirit. It’s going to be blended as one. It is not, as some people think, a perfect body; so put the leaven in because it has to represent the church as it is.”
I’m not excusing sin; I’m just glad that God made provision for us in spite of it, because his plan was to take care of ALL things.
In God’s great plan, the baptism with the Holy Spirit is available for all his children and is necessary to help us to be and do!
God’s Spirit must be in us, and it cannot be quenched; the flow of the Holy Spirit power must never be held back. “Do not quench (suppress or subdue) the (Holy) Spirit” (1 Thessalonians 5:19 Amplified).
The baptism with the Holy Spirit endues us with power to be like Jesus!
It is a vital part of God’s plan. You cannot erase it! It’s there! It is settled forever!
Five. PRIORITY: GO TELL THE WORLD
FESTIVAL: THE FESTIVAL OF TRUMPETS
After the day of Pentecost was the Festival of the Trumpets where the people met to herald the sound, and we too have the message to herald the Good News. Let’s get out where people don’t know Jesus, be the voice of the trumpet, and carry the Good News that Jesus saves! His work is done!
The news is good! You can come now! Christ has defeated the devil! The battle is over, and we can go out with the trumpets! That is what he meant when he said, “… ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth” (Acts 1L8).
Six. PRIORITY: ATONEMENT OF JESUS IS EVERLASTING
FESTIVAL: THE DAY OF ATONEMENT
The Festival of Atonement was a reminder that Israel’s probation had expired and that their covering must be renewed. It was the time for the annual sacrifice for sin. It was a time when God reviewed all the charges against man each year and he stood hopeless and helpless before the all-seeing eye of God.
For this reason, man was given certain guidelines based on complete obedience so that he would earn a reprieve during this time of exposure. This annual offering for sin could never make people perfect, but would give them another year of probation (Lev. 23:27; Luke 1:8-12).
When we are born again and God’s Holy Spirit gives us new life from heaven, our probation does not just expire, it is canceled; the covering is not just renewed, it is an everlasting covering through the sacrifice of Jesus.
What about those who sin, who remove themselves from under the covering of God’s protection? Just as God provided a way under the old law, he has a way for them today – and that way is repentance and a return to fellowship since there is no other sacrifice, no other way!
“But if we confess our sins to him, he can be depended on to forgive us and to cleanse us from every wrong. (And it is perfectly proper for God to do this for us because Christ died to wash away our sins.)” (1 John 1:9 TLB).
Seven. PRIORITY: THE RETURN OF JESUS
FESTIVAL: THE FESTIVAL OF TABERNACLES
The desire of God is that we live with him forever and forever. This festival was a totally joyous celebration. On the first day, the people were to build the shelters out of boughs of fruit trees laden with fruit, palm fronds, and the boughs of leafy trees, while rejoicing before the Lord their God. These were to be the shelters where God would dwell with them.
Long ago God said, “I want to take you where I am. I want to live with you by my Spirit, and then I want to take you to live with me forever.” This wasn’t something that happened or that was decided on by a committee of theologians. He told Moses to institute this feast, because “I want to tabernacle with you.” You can’t get away from the message of the return of Christ and God’s taking us to live with him, because it is already established in heaven and it is going to unfold exactly the way God said it would!
We have the assurance that we are covered through God’s grace and that he doesn’t see our sin, our fault or failure, but sees us exactly like Jesus – holy, faultless and unreproveable (Col. 1:22). We can rest in his finished work. Our confidence in the completeness of his perfect plan will get others ready for that great day when he returns to receive us unto himself.
This is the last of the seven festivals given to Moses and this priority will bring to completion God’s great plan of redemption.
These festivals were so important to God that he had Israel rehears them every year as a symbol of leaving this world.
EDITORIAL NOTE: My wife Marie and I received the book which contains God’s Priorities, shortly after it was published in 1979. We do know that God places great emphasis on the 7 Festivals of Leviticus 23. In 1944 Mrs. Mary Bertha Allquist, a Jewish prophetess to Jews, shared with me as a new believer, the importance of these 7 Festivals. The Linkage of these with God’s 7 Priorities is significant.
Although I did not know Roland Buck personally, I was a close friend of his younger brother Walter in Seattle during the 60’s. He among many others spoke most favorably of the integrity and trustworthiness of his older brother Roland in Boise, Idaho. The Hunters have done a commendable job in reporting the 16 visitations by angels to Roland in the 1978-79 time-frame. Turn to Website: www.angelsonassignment.org. There you can obtain information on the book, its sequel, “The Man Who Talked with Angels,” by Sharon White, 1982, and to download “Angels on Assignment” in pdf format. Do a search on “Angels on Assignment” for more information.
May this brief excerpt from the book return us all to the significance of the 7 Festivals of Leviticus 23.