Introduction. Asher means happy or blessed. There is a “Contentment” associated with Asher, like Borden’s Contented Cow! Blessed the spouse married to an Asher. The temperament of Asher is a combination of Matthew (one of a lion-like spirit) and Mark (the steady serving ox).
Salt and sugar are a mixture. But Asher is a compound – the Matthew/Mark combination becomes fused into a compound partaking of both, but producing a product unlike either. He is a genetic gift from God that is unlike the other 11 tribes, but greatly appreciated by them because of Asher’s unique contribution to the whole.
Perfect government is a combination of the 12 unique elements of each of the 12 tribes. And in Christ's coming manifested Kingdom, the 12 apostles of the Lamb will sit on 12 thrones judging the 12 tribes of Israel. Without Asher, this combination would not be complete.
One. Asher: Significance of his Tribal Connection. Leah named this surrogate son of hers birthed thru Zilpah her handmaid. He was the 8th son of Jacob, and 2nd of Zilpah and the 6th legal son of Leah. Leah’s thought was, “How happy I am! Women will say I am happy!” By this she felt assured she would have a part in Jacob’s love (Genesis 30).
Jacob the Patriarch went beyond his natural inclinations when he spoke his dying blessing over Asher. He foretold, “Asher’s food is rich – he will provide food fit for a king” (Genesis 49:20). What a wonderful contribution Asher could make on the basis of this prophetic word! Talk about French gourmet cooks – Asher eclipsed them all! A Pharaoh would take pleasure in the cuisine art of an Asher!
But it was not just natural food that Jacob foresaw – Asher could break the bread of life for the soul and spirit – and make glad the heart of man.
But Moses also surpassed his natural insights as the Spirit of God carried him along in his eulogy concerning Asher. “May Asher be most blessed of sons, may he be the favorite among his brothers and bathe his feet in oil. May your bolts be of iron and bronze and your strength last as long as you live. ‘Yeshurun, there is no one like God, riding through the heavens to help you, riding on the clouds in his majesty’” (Deuteronomy 33:24-26).
Who would not be happy in fact as well as name to receive such a prophetic blessing! And this tribe saw fulfillment of this word. Just look at Anna the prophetess of the tribe of Asher, who welcomed our Lord Jesus into this world! Luke tells of her prayer and fasting habits, and reveals her intuitive gifts of the Spirit that led her to the Temple like Simeon. She came at the exact time and place to speak prophetic words of blessing over the only begotten Son of God. She happily shared with all that would listen concerning God’s wonderful plan for His Son’s life.
In Exodus 28 we see Asher’s name inscribed upon the opal, the 11th precious stone of Aaron’s breastplate of judgment. Blessedness and happiness is so great that it extends beyond the one stone! Aaron on his shoulders wears two large opal stones as part of the ephod that extends up his back, and over his shoulders. On these two Asher-like opal stones the names of the 12 sons of Jacob in order of birth were inscribed. The government shall be upon his shoulders! Jesus as our great High Priest after the order of Melchizedek bears the names of the sons of Jacob in intercessory prayer. On the breastplate of Judgment Asher appears on his special precious stone as one of the tribes of Israel.
Two. Latin America: Its Healing and Revival Connection. The 1948 Visitation birthed and blessed Edward Miller. The anointing he received led him to South America and the Argentine. There some 50 gathered under his leadership to intercede and break the power of the strong man over that nation.
He persuaded one reluctant lady to act out what the Lord was revealing to her. To encourage her, he had all present walk around the room, and strike a table at the front as they went by. When this sister with this encouragement obeyed the Lord – the power of the strong man was broken. It opened the door and paved the way for Tommy Hicks to come down. God then opened the largest stadium in Buenos Aires to him, and graced the meetings with salvation and healings beyond imagination!
Then in 1967 God followed this up with another visitation, all stemming from the work of God at North Battleford in 1948. The word of the Lord came to a brother, “Build dams! I am about to pour out of my Spirit on Buenos Aires and this nation in such measure that only dams can contain the blessing!” It would be the blessing and happiness of an Asher.
God led a number of brothers together in Kingdom fellowship: Keith Benson, Orville Swindoll (Chuck Swindoll’s brother), Jorge Himitian, Ivan Baker and Juan Carlos Ortiz. 32 churches, mostly Anglican and Plymouth Brethren came together in fellowship. The 800 churches of the World Council of Churches were heard to say, “If these 32 churches feel led by God to do anything, we might as well join them, for it will surely come to pass!
But the greatest and most sustained blessing of Asher is taking place at the present time. 1000’s from our country have visited this move of God and marveled how the Lord has taken cities and the nation for Himself! He has touched many other countries also thru Argentina. Leading pastors and 5-fold ministries from the Argentine have visited our nation and many other countries of the world.
Our nation has not yet risen to the level of the cities of Argentina. But a lone ranger syndrome is breaking down, and some pastors of local churches will soon cease to build local kingdoms, and join to take cities and nations for Christ.
The blessing of Asher is in this move because of the unusual healings taking place for body, soul and spirit. A spirit of humility, forgiveness and reconciliation characterizes this Visitation. Unusual discernment shines forth from God’s servants. When healing is not immediate, they discern demonic entrenchment. Successful exorcism takes place. Healing then becomes automatic and immediate. This is the same spirit that characterized the 1948 visitation, except it is on a much broader and wider scale. Some of their churches are open 23 hours a day 7 days a week. They shut down one hour a day so caretakers can clean the building.
In the humility that characterizes this Move, God has taught them to move in opposites. When He pointed out the spirit of pride among some visiting workers, He then guided them to move in the opposite – even the spirit of humility. When positive and negative are held in balance in dynamic tension, these opposites can then be a blessing. It becomes like the two foci around which our earth moves to create our seasons: one focus is the sun – the other the hidden place of darkness. And in the Spirit, should the church not move around the Son of Righteousness, and then in spiritual winter around the Father’s Throne hidden in darkness?
Three. The Oswald Chambers Connection. “My Utmost for His Highest,” Oswald Chamber’s famous daily devotions, is so well known that we do not need to spell out the details to obtain it.
Oswald grew up in bonnie Scotland, but came to the Lord in London thru the ministry of Charles Haddon Spurgeon.
He excelled in 7 different areas and as a tutor in Dunoon, Scotland taught 7 different subjects. He was a good pianist and an excellent worship leader. God led him to found a school for missionaries to lead them into a deeper and more intimate knowledge of Himself.
In his closing years God thrust him into a YMCA chaplaincy for British forces in Egypt during World War I. It was here at the age of 43 that God called him home to Himself.
He wrote some 3 books while living. But his widow took his notes that she had recorded from his lectures, and posthumously published over 40 of his books. He being dead yet speaks.
His love and rapport with children was remarkable.
But perhaps the outstanding challenge of the life of OC can be expressed in his words, “Personal, passionate devotion to Jesus.”
Oswald belonged to “The League of the Burning Heart” of Psalm 63. He brought many individuals not only to the Lord, but to join him as manifestations of God as the Burning Bush of Moses – ever burning – but not consumed.
Following his abrupt and sudden death in 1917, his wife put out a notice to those on their mailing list, and transcribed one of his last messages and enclosed it. One British soldier replied, “I know it is a lot to ask – but your husband taught a series of messages that touched my heart shortly before he died. Would it be possible to transcribe them also, and publish this series as a book?
It was this request that started the posthumous publication of all of the books of Oswald Chambers.
A number of biographies have been written on the life of God’s servant. You will not waste your time to procure one of these and read it.
I had the privilege to visit Scotland in 1985, and visited Greenock where my ancestor James Watt of steam-engine fame grew up. We stayed overnight at Gourock, 3 miles west of Greenock. That night my roommate and I saw the lights across the Firth of Clyde. When we checked our map, we found ourselves south of Dunoon of OC fame. How I would have loved to have had time to catch a ferry and visit that place – the place that in a sense launched the ministry of Oswald Chambers.
Four. The 1948 Visitation: Relationship of Healing and Exorcism. In the mid and late 40’s William Branham visited Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Some of the future elders of the 1948 Visitation attended his meetings. They marveled at the insight God gave them thru His servant! Sometimes healing of the total man is held up because of demonic oppression. Meet this need by exorcism and deliverance, and the healing is automatic.
Brother Branham deftly and surely under the guidance of the Holy Spirit discerned when this was the need. He then successfully dealt with demonic powers, just as they do today in the Argentine, and the healings automatically followed.
This greatly impressed George R. Hawtin. Following the initial February 1948 Visitation, he incorporated this concept into the ministry of the Sharon Orphanage and Schools. No doubt it was a prime cause why God used this revival.
Winston Nunes was persuaded that it was one of the three chief explanations for the unusual power of God that accompanied this visitation. William Branham was a simple Baptist preacher from Kentucky. He had a very limited education – like a Peter one might say. His family moved to Indiana where their son grew up and became a game warden. But God had other plans for him. He would visit him even before He revealed Himself to him as Savior and Lord. On one visit, He told him of the call on him to be an evangelist and heal the sick – and that he was not to drink liquor or smoke – as part of the condition to make his call effective.
Finally in desperation to find out why he was different from other boys and girls, he went apart to seek God in solitude. God spoke to him in detail, outlining that an angel would minister the gift of healing that would move thru him. Only when God’s angel was present, would this unique gift operate.
The vessel God chose to use was not perfect (but who of any of us are?). There was a mixture in his life, perhaps because of an occult background in the life of his parents. Nonetheless, God used him in Europe, Asia, South Africa and North America in a way that stirred many others to step out in a healing/evangelism ministry. T. L. Osborn is but one of 50 so motivated.
The motivation from God’s servant William Branham on the leaders of the 1948 Visitation is undoubted. I personally attended 50 of the Branham healing crusade meetings, and met William Branham personally. I attended primarily to hear the teaching of Ern Baxter who served as Branham’s teacher and business manager for 6 years. I later became associate pastor to Ern Baxter in the Vancouver, B.C. Metroplex, and from him learned many intimate details about Branham.
In South Africa Baxter gave the invitation to 60,000 people at a racetrack following the ministry of both himself and Branham, and 30,000 responded to a first time decision for Christ!
Conclusion: Fasten on your mind this Embryonic Revival Principle: the happy Asher spirit of blessing manifests itself in healing for the total man! Sometimes exorcism and deliverance from demonic powers is necessary to see the realization of this total healing.
(“Let No One Deceive You” – Confronting the Critics of Revival – Michael L. Brown, Revival Press, ISBN 1-56043-693-X – an imprint of Destiny Image http://www.reapernet.com 1997. John Wesley, Jonathan Edwards, Charles G. Finney, Charles Haddon Spurgeon – all had the powerful presence of the Holy Spirit moving thru their lives – and all had powerful critics and persecution. Jesus had “unbelieving unbelievers” who persecuted Him – but these later saints had “unbelieving believers” as theirs! These latter had grown cold and formal in their life, teaching and ministry – and reacted violently to Spirit-led living. They confirmed the old adage – “It is the fate of the last revival to persecute the new!”
This happened in 1948 with the Northern Canada Visitation starting February of that year. The rumors were amazing and seldom based on fact. It was simply a visitation, a revival that God sent in answer to prayer. The Brownsville, Pensacola, Florida revival has been going longer, and has a wider impact, though the anointing and presence of God in 1948 was awesome.
One of the most helpful products of Brownsville is the writings of Dr. Michael L. Brown. Every person interested in revival and this revival in particular owes it to himself to read this defense. Some will recognize that their charges have not only been second-hand, but are not comprehensive, scriptural nor based upon fact. To read the quotes from apologetic writers of the past will be most illuminating.)