Come in to the Ark – Lynne Fowler


Last night I attended a service at a church where I visit from time to time, in addition to my normal fellowship. It was a time of intense worship, and the tangible presence of the Lord was awesome. At one point the pastor leading the meeting said something about pressing in to the Holy of Holies. The minute he said this, the Holy Spirit spoke to my heart and said, “There is another step. What is in the Holy of Holies?” I replied, “The Ark of the Covenant.” “Yes,” said the Spirit. “Come in to the Ark.” At the time I had no idea what that meant, and it was certainly not something I would have thought of myself.


I spent my entire prayer time this morning listening to the Holy Spirit unpack it for me, and I am presenting this unpolished, just as He gave it to me. I believe it is mostly for the Body of Christ, but there are also some personal elements. I believe there are others to whom God wants to extend this invitation, and who will hear it through this message.


* What does it mean, to “come in to the Ark?” This was something that was never done in the natural, so there was no precedent to work from. What the Spirit was showing me is that the Holy of Holies is the place of God’s radiated presence, but the Ark is the place of His residing presence. If the Ark moved out of the Holy of Holies, His presence would move; but His presence remained always in/on the Ark.


* The high priest came into the Holy of Holies once a year, and when he had completed his duties there he left. When you come into the Ark you will not leave, but will remain there forever.


* The Ark contained the tablets of the Law. Was God saying to go back under the Law? I knew that couldn’t be the case, as the Word tells us that in Christ we have died to the Law (Rom 7:6) As I sought the Spirit about this He asked me, “What does the Law reveal?” “God’s character,” I answered. “Yes,” He said, “come in to the fullness of God’s character.” This means intense breaking and refining.


* The Ark also carries God’s power. To enter the Ark is to become a carrier of His power. We must be people He can trust with His power – more breaking and refining.


* The presence of the Ark brings both blessing and judgement. The Spirit warned me solemnly, “Unless you are prepared to carry both, don’t even think of entering the Ark. You cannot be “nice”. You will be both loved and hated.”


* The presence of the Ark confronts false gods (1 Sam 5:2-5) Entering the Ark means a whole new level of spiritual warfare – still more breaking and refining.


* It is “by invitation only.” The Spirit took me to the story of Esther – even though she was queen, she could only enter the presence of the king if he extended the golden sceptre to her. We can choose to move from the outer court into the Holy Place. We can choose to press in from the Holy Place to the Holy of Holies – God has torn the curtain and made the way open for us. But we can only enter the Ark when He extends the invitation to us.


* The invitation is only extended to those who have already pressed in to the Holy of Holies. It is not possible to move from the Holy Place in to the Ark, or even to receive the invitation whilst still in the Holy Place. The Holy Place is a place of service, but we have to move from the place of service as a function to the place of service in and from His presence before we can go deeper.


* That doesn’t mean that we can earn or deserve the invitation by being in the Holy of  Holies. It just means that by being there we position ourselves to a place where we can either receive or not receive the invitation, just as Esther had to stand at the door to see if the king would extend the golden sceptre to her, but her standing there didn’t mean it would automatically happen.


* To touch the Ark means death (2 Sam 6:7), to enter it means ultimate death. In my life and ministry there have been many times of dying to self, but somehow it seems this is the ultimate level of that, and accepting the invitation means a deeper level of surrender than anything I have ever experienced.


Lord, I am humbled and awed by Your invitation. I can’t do this, but You can. I accept. I come.


Lynn Fowler, 20th March 2023.

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