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Ark of the Testimony
the Testimony
by haRold Smith
Jerusalem, Israel

"And Moses said unto Aaron, Take a pot, and put an omer full of manna therein, and lay it up before YHVH, to be kept for your generations. As YHVH commanded Moses, so Aaron laid it up before the Testimony, to be kept." Exodus 16:33-34

"And there I will meet with you, and I will commune with you from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are upon the ark of the testimony, of all things which I will give you in commandment unto the children of Israel." Exodus 25:22

"And he gave unto Moses, when he had made an end of communing with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God." Exodus 31:18

And He said, " My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest." Exodus 33:14

"And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See you do it not: I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren that have the Testimony of Yeshua: worship YHVH: for the Testimony of Yeshua is the spirit of prophecy." Revelation 19:10

Aharon laid some manna from the wilderness before YHVH, the Present Presence (click on highlighted verse to see scripture). Manna is the bread-like substance that appeared on the ground every morning for forty years as a provision for the children of Israel while they were in the wilderness. It is in the acknowledgment of His Presence we find Provision for our lives. That Presence is called 'the Testimony'. It is in His Presence He speaks to us. That Presence abides above the Mercy Seat on the ark of 'the Testimony'. It is in His Presence, the Essence of the Source of Life is revealed. That Presence is written on the tables of 'the Testimony'. It is in His Presence we find Rest and it is in 'the Testimony'. of the Life of Yeshua we learn how to access the Presence of the Father. (Matthew 11:28 - quoting Exodus 33:14).

The Testimony IS the Presence of YHVH.

Testimony is translated from the Hebrew word, eduwth (a-duth), meaning precept or revelation. It comes out of the root word 'ed which means "witness" or "testimony, what testifies". It is used in Numbers 1:53. to describe the tabernacle of the Testimony.
Testimony in the Greek is martyria. (from the root of which comes martyr) and is used in John 3:32-33. to mean "witness" or "a testifying".

There are only two places where scripture says Spirit breathed on men. The first is in Genesis with Adam (Genesis 2:7) and the second was with the disciples immediately after Yeshua was resurrected (John 20:22). In Yeshua was the displayed image of the spiritual in the physical. When we embrace the Life of Yeshua, guess what - we get breathed upon (Job 33:4). We get the Breath of Life dwelling within us. This is not a mystical, ethereal, wispy, maybe someday, by and by, over yonder, pie in the sky, wish I may, wish I might, if I be real good tonight, get there - this is REAL. Right here, right now, in you - Power. It is the SAME Power that raised Yeshua from the grave - Power that quickens, gives life to our mortal bodies (Romans 8:11). It is the same Power that was manifested in the Life of Yeshua (John 10:25, see the Kinsman Redeemer).

His Presence So, then, how does that Power become manifested in us? Really - how do we "manifest" it to make it real in our lives today? It comes first with knowledge, a 'knowing' of Truth (John 17:3), therefore, it begins with knowing Who He Is in Truth (Hosea 4:6). Yeshua said He is the Way, the Truth and the Life. Or, to put it in a different wording, the only Way to come into the Presence of Truth is through the embrace of the Life that He lived as an example for us to follow. His was a Life lived in the Presence of the Father. Scripture says He didn't DO anything unless He first saw and heard the Father do it (John 5:19). The Power is in the Presence of the Father. So, then, the question becomes, "how do I remain in the Presence of the Father?" (see what it means To Be Made Manifest),

First, we must come to an understanding of what the Way into His Presence is. Yeshua, who lived in the Presence of the Father, said, "If any one would come after Me, let Him (1) deny himself, (2) take up whatever cross he has to bear daily, and (3) follow Me" (Luke 9:23). He went on to say in Matthew 10:38) that if we didn't take up our cross daily, we are not worthy of Him. Worthy comes from the Greek word axios, meaning having the weight of another thing of like value, worth as much. It is not a guilt-thing but connotates more of receiving the same fullness of measure as He did. This is the exercise. Three simple steps that become a life-long challenge to maintain - not to achieve, but to maintain.

The Power we have access to is surrounded by a tightly-guarded hedge. That hedge is one of self-denial. We must be willing to forsake everything we consider important or self-gratifying in order to access that Power. The means by which we deny ourselves is by dying to those desires on a daily basis and to follow Yeshua's Way, His example of Life. The Greek word for "follow" is akoloutheo and from the Thayer's Lexicon means to cleave steadfastly to one, to conform wholly to his example, in living and, if need be, in dying also.

This word 'cleave' is also found in Genesis 2:24 describing the marriage relationship and comes from the Hebrew dabaq which means "to be glued inseparably together". The illustration given as an image for this word is 'two sticky mudballs, smacked together so that they become seamless'. This is why Paul describes the marriage relationship "a mystery" because, even though it is obvious in the natural there are two distinct entities, the Father looks upon them as being "one flesh" - and he likens this relationship as the relationship experienced with His Body - Bone of His Bone, Flesh of His Flesh (Ephesians 5:30-32). If we are to access that Power through that hedge, we must become as He Is (1John 4:17), part of His Body - one big sticky mudball.

James 1:14-17 says that we are "tempted when we are drawn away of our own lust, and enticed". The Greek word for "lust" used here is epithymia and means desire, craving, longing. Interestingly, it is the same Greek word used for desire by Yeshua in Luke 22:15 when He said "with desire have I desired to eat this Passover with you". It is the natural desires that YHVH has placed within us that the enemy uses to entice us with - to draw our attention and our faith away from the One True Holy Elohiem of Israel as our provider of everything we need. Now, when you are enticed - you better believe every fiber of your being is going to cry out for satisfaction. This is where we exercise authority over our bodily members. Yeshua has given us access to the same authority He was given of the Father. This word "authority" comes from the Greek word eksousia.. Of the 103 times eksousia is found in scripture, it is translated "power" 69 times and the rest "authority". It means "power of choice".

"My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand. I and my Father are one." John 10:27-30

Tempted He has given us the choice, the Power, to remain in His Presence - in His Hand. All we have to do is stand, believing that NOTHING - NOTHING has the power to snatch us out of His Hand. He will do the rest. Yeshua did not come to 'help' us get it together. He came to do it for us - if we allow Him to. The Power is in the Present Presence.

As our example of how we are to exercise authority in like circumstance, Yeshua resisted His natural desire when He was confronted by the enemy in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1-11. Luke 4:1-13) - He didn't take the bait (James 4:7). He didn't try to pray His way out of the circumstance He found Himself in after those forty days. He simply stood in the Palm of YHVH believing in the Goodness of the Father, and having stood - continued to stand (Ephesians 6:10-17). In the end, the Father sent angels to minister to Him - He didn't leave Yeshua forsaken. That is the promise we have in Him. But, we must believe that He will meet us in our time of need (Hebrews 11:6). Revelation 12:11 says, "And they overcame him (the enemy) by the blood of the Lamb (1John 1:8-9), and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death." (see Falling Off A Cliff for more insight),

It is an exercise and, like any exercise, in the beginning - it just hurts. I have to admit that while I was in the States, I didn't walk. I got complacent. Since being back in Jerusalem, I am forced to walk and, I have to tell you, there have been days when I really thought I was going to die. There were a couple of times I didn't think I would make it back home. I could have gotten in a taxi and weaseled out, but I knew I needed to walk. The more I walk, the farther I am ABLE to walk. The same is true in the Spirit. As an EXERCISE, in the beginning, you are going to feel like if you don't give in, you will die. The authority you already have been given in Him, however, says you have the power to choose not to give in. (Luke 9:1).

"Commit your works unto the LORD, and your thoughts shall be established."
Proverbs 16:3

The only power the enemy has over us is what we give him. All of his bluster (and seduction) is designed to intimidate you into giving up your Power of Choice (Colossians 1:12-17). If he can entice you into thinking about it, into toying with it in your mind - that's where he traps us (2Corinthians 10:4-5). The warfare is not in your body or the circumstances surrounding you, but in your mind just to believe that YHVH is Good - no matter what you see, no matter what you hear, no matter what you feel, no matter what you think. To believe He will not abandon us - no matter how severe the circumstance may seem. (see Preserving Our Life). Do we choose to remain in His Provision, His Presence in the Palm of His Hand or do we choose to walk our own way, out of His Palm - thinking it to be a way out. You can also be comforted that He knows your temptation (Hebrews 2:17-18). And that, if like Him, we resist that temptation we are made perfect in Love (1John 4:16-18). This is what He meant when He told us to "Be Perfect - even as your Father in heaven is Perfect." (Matthew 5:48). Our faith is made perfect in our vulnerability (see Becoming Vulnerable).

John 1:4 says, "In Him was Life and the Life was the Light of men." - notice it says 'the' Life. It is the Life lived in the Presence of the Father that we become Light. We know some things about the dynamics of Light. It travels at 186,000 miles per second and it doesn't bend. Light is a force - concentrate Light into a laser and it will burn through any substance. Within the purest Light are all the colors of the spectrum - darkness does not abide there. Light and darkness cannot occupy the same space at the same time - it is a physical impossibility. In fact, the definition of darkness is 'the absence of Light'. Light causes darkness to dissipate - not flee, but to become non-existent. Light actually causes darkness to 'become' Light. When you flip on the switch in a darkened room at night, is there a struggle for the Light to become predominant? It just - is. That is the force of Light. The enemy would try to convince you otherwise but it is in exercising Light we prove him wrong. We have the power to choose where we stand - in darkness or in Light (see the Law of Grace for a more detailed explanation),

The Captain Just as Light and darkness cannot abide in the same space at the same time, the same can be said for Faith and fear. (see Faith & Fear). You will either have the one or have the other. They are like two opposite ends of a magnet. We EXERCISE Faith by CHOOSING to stand and by so doing, we create a portal into this earthly realm for Ruach haKodesh (the Holy Spirit) to enter and do battle on our behalf. Like Light and darkness - it is He, Perfect Love, that causes fear to dissipate. (1Peter 4:1-2).

Romans 3:23 says that "All have sinned and come short of the Glory of God." Sin (darkness) diminishes Light (glory). Our daily choice to crucify darkness in our life by choosing Light is what keeps us in His Presence and proves and vindicates our faith. It also unleashes Ruach haKodesh to work on our behalf. We simply need to look beyond the roar, the bluster of the enemy to the Captain of our Faith. He will strengthen you BY His Presence. Yeshua did not try to run the devil off in the wilderness. He withstood him face to face KNOWING that the enemy could not touch Him. Psalm 23:5 tells us that YHVH prepares for those who walk with Him a banquet table "in the presence of mine enemies," without fear - knowing that nothing can snatch us out of His Hand, His Presence.

I live every day in front of a computer - three key strokes away from all the porn in the world. I choose not to go there. Why? It isn't because I am such a good guy. I am tempted like everybody else - just like He was (Hebrews 2:17-18), I choose not to go there because I know that, while those things may bring pleasure for a moment, they result in death (Galatians 6:7-8). That death is a separation from the Presence of Life, which is Light. The real insidiousness of momentary pleasures is the very act of indulgence is what numbs us to the awareness of His Presence. It is because of experiencing His Goodness in my life that I just don't want to do anything that would mess up this relationship again (Romans 2:4). In knowing Him, I have come to appreciate Who He Is. In watching Him step to the forefront of my life time and time again, often when He didn't have to - I have fallen in love with this One Who first loved me. (1John 4:19).

When we do allow darkness into our life, we have an advocate with the Father that with our confession to one another, He forgives us, cleanses us from that darkness and places us back in right standing before His Presence (1John 1:8-9).

Remember, the Power is in His Presence. As we choose to stand, to remain in His Presence in the midst of what would seem insurmountable enticement, overwhelming darkness, circumstances beyond our control - we exhibit Light and that Light overcomes any darkness surrounding us. That is the Power of His Presence. Not to eliminate the situation, but to be changed and to be conformed to His Likeness in the midst of the circumstance. THAT is our Testimony.

"But to all who did receive him, who believed in His Name,
He gave the power (eksousia) to become children of Spirit (YHVH)..." John 1:12

Please feel free to email them to me at I don't claim to have all the answers, but I would be honored to share with you what the Father is uncovering in these days.