by Jason Hooper
We have crossed over into a new season in God. It is a season that carries with it promises fulfilled, promotions granted and “increase” by the Spirit of God.
The word right now is “increase”. For the past two weeks I have continued to see the word “increase” everywhere I look. The Lord is highlighting this time as a season of “increase” and with this I have the feeling that our present is about to catch up with what has been prophesied.
He will bless those who fear the Lord, both small and great. May the Lord give you increase more and more, you and your children (Psalm 115:13-14).
The blessings and increase of God that are being granted to us in this season will notbe awarded based on our personal accomplishments. Rather, the blessing and increase of the Lord will rest upon those who possess a loyalty of heart and the knowledge of God that can only be found in the Fear of the Lord.
For I delight in loyalty rather than sacrifice, and in the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings (Hosea 6:6 NASB).
It is in the inclining of our ear to wisdom and the applying of our heart to understanding that we will begin to understand the fear of the Lord and in that place of understanding find the knowledge of God. It is there that we are given access to the treasuries of wisdom and knowledge He has stored up for the upright (see Proverbs 2:1-11).
Behold, the Lord’s eye is upon those who fear Him [who revere and worship Him with awe], who wait for Him and hope in His mercy and loving-kindness (Psalm 33:18 AMP).
It is when we find ourselves in this place of sincere devotion that the hidden mysteries and secrets of the Lord, as they are revealed to us, find a home within our hearts (see Deuteronomy 29:29). With this heavenly counsel, we are also granted covenantal blessing as the Lord shows Himself strong on our behalf in response to a heart that is wholly His (see 2 Chronicles 16:9).
The secret of the Lord is with those who fear Him, and He will show them His covenant (Psalm 25:14).
“Aaron’s Rod Has Budded”
On September 17th, 2012, the first day of Rosh Hashanah, I was awakened by the Voice of the Lord at 6:39am, saying, “Aaron’s Rod has budded.” Often the timing of when the Lord speaks in this fashion carries with it a revelation that accompanies the message.
This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day (John 6:39).
The fact that “Aaron’s Rod has budded” has a number of applications. The timing of this revelation however speaks to the ministry of restoration and resurrection that it contains.
Restoration & Resurrection
Many have emerged from what could be considered a challenging season marked by an outward appearance of loss. And although there has been tangible loss, I can tell you this; it is the will of the Father that of all He has given to you nothing has been lost that will not be fully restored and completely resurrected in these coming days.
Now, if on the other hand the Lord has allowed a “material downsizing” that has simplified your life in preparation for this coming season-be thankful. It is this preemptive downsizing that will afford you the freedom to move with the cloud when He says move.
Korah’s Rebellion & Aaron’s Intercession
Before we look at the prophetic significance and application of Aaron’s Rodbudding, let’s take a quick look at the timing of this miraculous event. Directly preceding this divine vindication we see two uprisings against God’s appointed leadership represented in Moses and Aaron.
The First uprising we see in the person of Korah and the 250 men of renown that had taken on his offense with Moses. Korah had been able to whisper in the ears these men creating an offense while sowing tares of rebellion that ultimately cost these men their lives.
Up until now, complaining and murmuring had only delayed their entering into their appointed land of promise. Now, however, their grumbling and questioning of God’s choice of leadership caused them to be literally swallowed up in their offense.
You would think that after this, the children of Israel would know better than to speak against God’s choice of leadership, but the very next day we are told that the entire congregation of the children of Israel complained against Moses and Aaron blaming them for the deaths of Korah and his cohorts.
In response to their criticisms, the Lord purposed to consume the children of Israel in a moment. But Moses and Aaron recognized that even if they people rejected them Aaron had been entrusted with the ministry of priest and had a responsibility to make atonement for their sins.
As they continued to curse Aaron, I can imagine him literally turning his cheek to their verbal blows, as he took his priestly censer, the fire and the incense and ran into the midst of the assembly standing between the dead and the living and stopped the plague. Although, 14,700 Israelites died in the plague the Lord honored Aaron and received the offering of incense as a steadfast confirmation of ministry. Interestingly enough, it was the illegal offering of incense from a place of counterfeit spiritual authority that was the downfall of Korah and his men the day before.
Although Scripture does not specifically make mention of it, we have to recognize the obvious leadership lesson here. Any leader can lead when they are celebrated, some can even lead when they are tolerated, but the willingness to lay down your life in intercession for the very people who praise you one day and want to crucify you the next? That is Christlike leadership.
The Budding of Aaron’s Rod
We pick up the story in Numbers 17 with the Lord telling Moses to gather from the children of Israel rods from each father’s house, twelve rods with the names of each leader written on their respective rod (see Numbers 17:2). Although the Levites were not numbered with the other tribes, the Lord told Moses to take the rod of Levi and write Aaron’s name on it (see verse 3).
The Lord then told Moses to place the rods in the tabernacle of meeting before the Testimony, where Moses would meet with the Lord (see verse 4). Once there, He would cause the rod of the man He chose to blossom as a sign to the people.
And it shall be that the rod of the man whom I choose will blossom (Numbers 17:5).
So Moses gathered the rods and placed them before the Lord in the tabernacle of witness. Now it came to pass on the next day that Moses went into the tabernacle of witness, and behold, the rod of Aaron, of the house of Levi, had sprouted and put forth buds, had produced blossoms and yielded ripe almonds Numbers 17:8).
Let’s look at some of the prophetic significance found in the budding of Aaron’s rod and its application to your own life.
1. Spiritual Awakening & Commissioning
The Almond Tree is referred to as the Awakening Tree. Rosh Hashanah (the day I was told that Aaron’s Rod has budded) is also known as the Day of the Awakening Blast. We are entering into a season of Awakening.
The Almond Tree is actually the first tree to bloom in terms of the Gregorian calendar. It blooms January 16th and produces ripe almonds within ten weeks time. In terms of Awakening, I find it very interesting that the announcement that Aaron’s Rod, an almond branch, had budded on Rosh Hashanah-the first day of the Jewish New Year.
The budding of Aaron’s rod followed a process of consecration for both he and his sons. It was a process where he was publicly stripped, washed, clothed and anointed for priestly service (see Leviticus 8). He had walked through a season of consecration and was now being commissioned to operate on a new and higher level.
2. Supernatural Fruitfulness
The rod had been situated in a dark and isolated place, but it had been laid to rest in the presence. In this place of hiddeness, it not only flowered but became fruitful by supernatural means and in a supernatural way producing ripe almonds (considered among the best and highest fruit- see Genesis 43:11)
3. Acceleration & Affirmation
The full cycle of the almond tree had transpired overnight. What would typically take ten weeks was accomplished in one night’s time.
Aaron’s rod had not only blossomed as the Lord said it would, but it was also producing ripe almonds. Aaron’s rod had gone beyond the requirements of the test, a strong affirmation of his authority and a sign to the people. Often times a rod or staff is prophetically understood to represent authority.
Aaron did not have to do anything or tell anyone that his rod had budded. His authority and the acceleration of his process were evident to all.
The Lord took up his case and affirmed his life and ministry with power. His authority and priesthood were confirmed publicly after a time of being scrutinized, questioned and at times doubted by those he was called to lead.
4. llumination, Enlightenment & Fresh Anointing
The bowls of the Golden Lampstand, the very containers that held the oil, werefashioned in the likeness of almond blossoms (see Exodus 25:31-34 & 37:17-22). The Lord is creating and establishing containers of fresh oil and causing them to become carriers of the fire where His flame rests and remain in this new season as we seek to become living lampstands anointed with the Seven Spirits of God (see Isaiah 11:2).
5. The Fulfillment of Prophetic Promises
We see this application in the life of Jeremiah as he is being commissioned as a prophet to the nations. The understanding here is found in the fact that the Lord actually used a Hebraic play on words to get his message through to Jeremiah.
The word of the Lord came to me saying, “What do you see, Jeremiah?” And I said, “I see a rod of an almond tree (Hb #8247 shaqed).” Then the Lord said to me, “You have seen well, for I am watching (Hb #8245 shaqadmeaning “to be alert, awake, on the lookout, hastening to, watching”) over My word to perform it (Jeremiah 1:11-12 NASB).”
The pronunciation of the Hebrew word for almond was so phonically similar to the Hebrew word for “watching” or “hastening” that they could almost be used interchangeably although there meanings were much different. The Lord used this play on word in his communication with Jeremiah as He showed him an almond branch in a vision and then asked him what he saw, while using the similarity of thetwo Hebrew words to communicate that He was watching over His Word to perform it.
The King James translation of verse 12 reads like this, “Then said the Lord unto me, Thou hast well seen: for I will hasten my word to perform it.” There is a quickening, a hastening and acceleration of to bring to pass that which has been previously promised.
Some have felt a bit like Joseph in recent times. You were given magnificent prophetic promises, but the wilderness between the promise and the promise fulfilled looked like anything but that which we had been promised.
He sent a man before them—Joseph—who was sold as a slave. They hurt his feet with fetters, he was laid in irons. Until the time that his word came to pass, the word of the Lord tested him. The king sent and released him, the ruler of the people let him go free Psalm 105:17-20).
The Word of the Lord tested Joseph until someone with authority stepped up released him and the promise that he had carried for all those years. The King of Kings is alert and active, watching over His Word to perform it in your life (see Jeremiah 1:12 AMP).
Just about every prophetic person you can think of has been seeing and hearing portions of Isaiah 60 for this season. The applications are endless and the promises long-awaited. Although, much attention has been given to the first three to five verses of this chapter, I am putting the Lord in remembrance of the entire chapter with my faith and focus resting on the last nine verses of this passage:
“I, the Lord, will hasten it in its time (Isaiah 60:22b).”
Deuteronomy 28: 12 tells us that our land has an appointed season of blessing. The Lord will open to you His good treasure (storehouse) the heavens, to give the rain to your land in its season, and to bless all the work of your hand. You shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow.
Galatians 6:9 tells us that there is such a time as “due season” in which we will reap a harvest if we do not lose heart. We see in Isaiah 60 that each promise we have been given has “its time” of fulfillment.
We have crossed over into a new season in God as we have stepped into what Paul called “due season” and “it’s time!”