KEYWORDS: city, enemy, people, god, wall

Stand in the Gap

David Berg

—Ezekiel 22:30—MOMay 6, 1971GP NO.70

(Notes on some thoughts and revelations received from the Lord after our phone call with some of you on some personnel problems regarding leadership:)


1. I SEE AS OUR MAJOR TASK‚ NOT THAT OUR MOVEMENT IS THE GREAT THING, BUT THAT WE, LIKE THE COMMUNISTS, TRAIN THE LEADERSHIP. We are the only ones who can do it, who can train the leaders!—Whether they stay with us or go elsewhere. There are some, even now, that have left us‚ but who have gotten the training under us. The more the Lord takes off our hands, the better. We aren't trying to control a big empire. They may not do it like we're doing it, but at least they're doing something!

2. LOOK AGAIN AT THE POLITICAL ILLUSTRATION OR ANALOGY OR TYPE. The communists were unable to take over either France or England—to really get personal control—but the doctrine through their sympathisers has conquered— not them personally as actual political leaders—not their personal control— but their doctrine has swept the world and is literally overcoming the world!

3. WE'RE NOT RUNNING THE JESUS MOVEMENT IN CALIFORNIA—THE IDEAS WE GAVE THEM—THE WORD THAT GOD GAVE TO US IS RUNNING IT—it's what we taught those people! Though we personally do not have the personal, immediate, responsibility of leading most of the Jesus People Movement, our doctrine which we taught and set the first sample and led them in—people following that doctrine are leading it, even though they're not with us.

4. MAYBE WHEN THAT BREAK COMES, IT'S BECAUSE WE'VE ACCOMPLISHED OUR PURPOSE and God wants to humble us and keep us down to our major ministry—quietly and privately training leaders.


5. THOSE WHO IMITATE US CRAVE CROWDS AND COVET QUANTITY, WHEREAS GOD IS LOOKING FOR QUALITY AND LEADERSHIP; 'CAUSE YOU'LL NEVER BE ABLE TO LEAD THE QUANTITY, IF YOU DON'T HAVE THE QUALITY LEADERSHIP. We're never going to be the biggest and largest thing! The true disciples are always going to be in the minority—the pioneers!

6. WE'RE ALL BEING SWEPT ALONG WITH GOD'S MAINSTREAM: Some are in the lead, some hovering near the shore‚ and some clinging to the little rocks of their own personal stand on their own pet doctrines. Some are riding their own little pet hobbyhorses!—But it's God's mighty river, and we're the ones, in a sense, that opened the floodgates and let it flow over into the spillways!—But we're in the lead, far in advance of the rest of them. What we do today‚ they'll be doing tomorrow, and what we do today they won't accept today, and they'll probably never give us credit for what they'll be doing tomorrow that we did today! They'll say it was their own idea.

7. THEY JUST HATE TO GIVE YOU CREDIT FOR IT—AND THE REASON THEY HATE TO GIVE YOU CREDIT FOR IT IS THAT THEY REJECTED IT AT THE TIME. Just like the time Jesus trapped the Pharisees when He said, The baptism of John—was it of God or not? If they had said it was of God, then Jesus would have said, why did you not follow him? If these people had admitted we were of God, then they would have had to follow us! (Mt.21:25–7)

8. IF THEY HAD SAID IT WAS NOT OF GOD, then they feared the crowds, because it was so popular. So the only thing they could do was to say, we don't know; we'll see; it could be; let's wait and see what happens. They don't want to stick their neck out and admit somebody else has what they haven't got. Neither do they want to join in with it, because then that would be an open confession that somebody has something better. But at the same time they don't want to utterly oppose it because it's so popular.

9. Armstrong, however, has probably lost a whole lot of support to us and the Jesus People and is terribly jealous! SOME PEOPLE ARE GOING TO BE SO STUBBORN AND BIGOTED THEY ARE ABSOLUTELY GONNA REFUSE TO GO ALONG with the wave, and try to fight it. And if they get too much in the way, God will just wipe them out!


10. I WAS LYING HERE THINKING LORD, IF I'M YOUR PROPHET, WHY DO I HAVE TO GO BACK AND GET EMBROILED IN ADMINISTRATIVE AFFAIRS AGAIN?—When suddenly it came to me that in those days of old, there were some who were prophets and some who were kings—some who handled purely the spiritual affairs of the Lord, had nothing to do with the political administration of the Kingdom‚ which was left to the kings and the royal family to handle the material affairs.

11. BUT IN SOME RARE INSTANCES, GOD COMBINED BOTH IN ONE MAN—LIKE KING DAVID! IN A SENSE HE WAS BOTH PROPHET, PRIEST, AND KING‚ So there are some cases where the prophet had to be involved in both the political and material administration, as well as being the mouthpiece of God. But it was an extremely difficult situation, and it caused David a lot of trouble. ...


12. (There was a long pause as Moses lay there with his eyes shut, then:) I SEE A BROKEN WALL. THERE'S FIRE BEYOND THE WALL. The fire is pouring out through the break in the wall. It is night, and the sky is very black and dark. The fire is raging very bright. If I were an artist I could draw you a picture of it. Like a city on fire—on fire within‚ which has caused a breach in the wall, which makes the city dangerously vulnerable to attack from the enemy without. It is as though the fire has caused the wall to crumble in this place. And the enemy are rejoicing, because they now see an opportunity of entering the city, while the citizens are busy battling the blazes. (Tongues)

THERE ARISES IN THE GAP IN THE WALL A GREAT KNIGHT IN SHINING, SILVERY ARMOUR, WITH A MIGHTY‚ BROAD-BLADED, TWO-EDGED SWORD, LIFTED, FACING THE ENEMY. Then ... whooosh. ... The fire just all suddenly went out, as though by a mighty, cool‚ wind from above.—Just like that! And the knight is calling for help! And now they're all joining him, to fight the enemy and build up the breach!—While he is standing in the gap defending the city!

13. BUT THE CITY LIES BEHIND, NEVERTHELESS, PARTLY BURNED, in smoking and smoldering ruins, partly destroyed!—But it's saved!

14. BUT SOME HAD ALREADY FLED THE CITY THROUGH THE BREACH, because they thought the fire was going to destroy the whole city. So they deserted!

15. (SOFT, WHISPERING TONGUES) ... WHEN THEY SEE THE CITY IS SAVED, THEY ARE ASHAMED, and they are torn between the two—whether to return and repent and confess, and beg forgiveness and re-enter the city,—or whether they should remain outside with the enemy. And they're standing watching the walls as though to see if they're going to really stand—to wait and see if the city's going to survive before they rejoin it. But the wall and the breach, or gap in the wall, is repaired and made strong‚ high and very mighty. And the gates are closed and the drawbridge is retracted, and it doesn't look like there's going to be any way for them to get back in, even if they want to. It's as though the city's been shut up and they can't return!—Because they waited too long!

16. (TONGUES) AND WHILE THEIR BACKS ARE TURNED ON THE ENEMY and they stand in indecision, they themselves are attacked from the rear by the enemy and devoured, because they waited too long!

17. PRAISE GOD! THE CITY REMAINS STRONG AND SAFE—those within make rejoicing and are merry‚ because they were saved; and they were all those of pure hearts and loyal to the King! Only those remained! And though the forces were smaller, the city was now even stronger and safer!

18. (TONGUES) HALLELUJAH! AND THE KING SHALL REJOICE IN THY STRENGTH, O LORD, and in thy Salvation how greatly shall he rejoice. ... For thou hast saved thy people! (Ps.21:1)

19. ONCE AGAIN, THE CITY IS LIGHT—SHINING LIGHT—not the burning, destroying fire—and all is rejoicing! It is like heavenly light!

20. BUT OUTSIDE ALL IS DARKNESS and weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth, and without are dogs, traitors‚ the fearful and abominable, and that which maketh and believeth a lie.

21. BUT OVERHEAD ARE BLACK CLOUDS GATHERING and mighty lightning of an approaching storm! And having survived the fire, the city is now to be beset by flood and raging torrents.

22. THE FIRST WAS DANGER FROM WITHIN which caused them to be threatened by the enemy without. But last is a flood of fire and water and thunder and storm from above from God for their purification!

23. BUT THE SUN BREAKS THROUGH THE CLOUDS AND THERE'S A BEAUTIFUL RAINBOW! (Tongues, weeping) And all the filth of the city is washed away down the gutters and through the drains, through the walls even, and out into the moats—off houses and roofs. And all of the soot and debris from the fire, and all the dirt and all the charred remains—all that was burned and black, is washed and swept away, and the city shines, it's so clean! (Hallelujah! Thank You, Lord!) THE SUN IS GETTING CLOSER AND CLOSER AND CLOSER! It shines so brightly and so brilliantly we can hardly stand it! 'Till we're all suddenly ... all of a sudden ... we're like the Son! We're like the light, and we live in it! We become one with it! The Son has settled down right upon the city, and we're all part of it. We're all part of the Light ... all part of the Light! "Ye shall rule and reign with me a thousand years. The Kingdom and Dominion shall be an everlasting Dominion." (Rev.20:4,6; Dan.7:14)

24. THERE ARE STILL THOSE OUTSIDE THE CITY THAT WATCH IT FROM AFAR—from outer darkness‚ and they look and they wait as though they're looking with hope and expectation for something—that all will be light for them again. Only the city was light. But the people outside had not lost hope!


25. (TONGUES) PRAISE THE LORD! I NEVER HAD ANYTHING LIKE THAT HAPPEN BEFORE! Thank You, Lord for encouraging us at a time like this. Thank You for helping us see the End from the Beginning. It was strange ... like the very stones of the city itself were burning, causing a breach in the wall. Like the fire within was so hot and destructive, that even the stones in the wall were melting from the fire!

26. UNTIL THAT GREAT KNIGHT ... HE WAS SO BIG! Wow! Just like he filled up the whole breach in the wall himself. It was just like he was beckoning the people to come and help, with his shield in one hand‚ while he was using the sword against the enemy in the other.

27. THAT COLD WIND WAS COMING FROM ABOVE—JUST SUDDENLY MADE THE FIRE GO OUT like that! In other words‚ the people themselves couldn't put it out. It was a terrible fire—the flames were like little wriggling serpents with vipers' heads. They were trying to stomp it out and swat it out with blankets—but to no avail. The Lord had to put it out. Then the people could help fight the enemy.

28. I JUST LAY THERE AND WAS FEELING SO DESPERATE ABOUT THE SITUATION, and I just closed my eyes and that picture was just as clear as could be. I suppose I could have seen more, if I'd kept my eyes shut!


29. IT'S A FUNNY THING: RIGHT NOW I DECIDED TO SHUT MY EYES AGAIN, AND I BEGAN TO SEE MORE: the light started to pour out through the gates and the city and across the land, just like a flood of light‚ and as it came out into the surrounding territory the waiting watchers were rewarded. The light did come, thank the Lord!


30. IT'S FUNNY ... THE KING CAME FROM OUTSIDE THE CITY IN HIS SHINING ARMOUR. It was as though everybody inside was so busy they didn't know what was happening.

31. THAT KING WAS WAY TOO BIG AND STRONG AND BEAUTIFUL TO BE ... (Tongues) "How foolish to contest and fight against the revelations of the Lord!"

32. IT'S LIKE HE HAD BEEN AWAY FIGHTING THE WARS—the Crusades—and he came back to find his own city burning. It reminds me of Richard the Lionhearted, always one of my favourite heroes. While he was away fighting the Crusades in faraway lands, his people at home got to fighting amongst themselves‚ and some tried to steal the Kingdom away from him. And he came back secretly, too, and nobody knew but his most intimate followers.

33. AND THEY WERE HAVING A TOURNAMENT and all the famous knights were jousting, including his leading enemy—the guy that was trying to steal the throne. And in those days a knight could challenge a champion. And so Richard challenged this rival, although Richard's identity was not even known. He was called the Black Knight‚ because he was concealed in black armour. He was called the Mystery Knight. Only his intimate friends, squire, and pages knew.

34. AND THEY JOUSTED—AND RICHARD DEFEATED HIS RIVAL! He pulled off his helmet—and everybody knew—and the Kingdom was saved!


35. AS I LAY THERE AT FIRST, I SAW JUST THE PICTURE of the city and the burning wall‚ and I wondered what it was for. And immediately it came to me, start describing it and there'll be more! The scene didn't change until I began to describe it. The minute I began to describe it, in obedience to the Lord, immediately appeared that great knight in the breach in the wall. He was kinda half facing the people, waving his shield at them, like‚ Come on, Come on, here's where the danger is—like he was desperate, and knew the first thing to do was to repair the wall, the gap—and show the enemy that they were prepared to fight them, and not let them in! And immediately when he summoned the people to face the real enemy, the fire went out just like that—they didn't have to put it out! God put it out! And the minute they dropped all their fleshly attempts to try to put out the fire themselves, and obeyed his call and turned to repair the breach and fight the enemy‚ God put out the fire!

36. JUST LIKE THAT TIME ON THE HILL WHEN HOSEA CRIED‚ "O JESUS! STOP IT!"—And the raging fire went out just like that—just like a wind blew it right out!


37. THAT'S FUNNY ... THAT WHEN THE PEOPLE CAME, IT WAS AS THOUGH THE ENEMY WERE APPROACHING THE WALLS‚ ready to invade the city, but the minute they saw the big knight and the people in the city coming to help him at his call, the enemy stopped and came no further, and gave them time to repair the breach.

38. IT WAS JUST AS THOUGH THE PEOPLE WERE SO BUSY FIGHTING THE FIRE OF THEIR OWN TROUBLES WITHIN that they didn't notice that the enemy was there about to enter through the breach.

39. IT WAS AS THOUGH THE GREAT KNIGHT WAS BECKONING THEM TO A GREATER DANGER THAN EVEN FIGHTING ALL THESE LITTLE FIRES WITHIN THE CITY. The danger of the fires from within was that they distracted the people from the greater danger without. The danger from within is serious in that it weakens your defenses against the outer danger and distracts from the main job!

40. "AND I SOUGHT FOR A MAN AMONG THEM, THAT SHOULD MAKE UP THE HEDGE‚ AND STAND IN THE GAP BEFORE ME for the land, that I should not destroy it!" (Ezk.22:30.)

41. THE JUDGEMENT IS FROM THE LORD, even the sword of the wicked, as He says, and He's always looking for a man to turn the hearts of the people from their wicked ways, their own selfish affairs and bickering even among His own people, a man to call them back up onto the wall of His work to fight the enemy without instead of amongst themselves within—like Nehemiah!—A man to call His people to repent and make up the hedge or wall and stand in the gap or breach until the wall of their defenses against the enemy is repaired and built up again and they are better able to defend His city‚ God's work and people and fight the outside enemy instead of amongst themselves.

42. OUR SPIRITUAL ENEMY IS ALWAYS LOOKING FOR A WEAKNESS, A WAY TO ENTER OUR DEFENSES, and is casting fiery darts into the city of our own fellowship trying to sow dissension, jealousy, covetousness, bickering, selfishness and internal discord so we'll get so busy fighting amongst ourselves we won't even notice our walls of spiritual strength from the Lord are crumbling from neglect or smouldering with sin, giving a place for the Enemy to enter in and destroy us and God's work. ONLY THE COOL WINDS AND RAINS OF GOD'S PURIFYING CHASTISEMENTS AND THE WATERS OF HIS WORD CAN SMOTHER THE FLAMES OF DISUNITY in His love and wash away the black filth of our lack of love and loyalty, so we can unite against the Foe, save His own and fill the Earth with God's light!


43. My Precious Children: Greetings in Jesus' Dear Name! I JUST WANT TO ADD A FEW COMMENTS ABOUT SOME IMPORTANT ITEMS I have noted in your letters, reports, etc., to include quickly with the above.

44. ABBREVIATIONS: I think some suggested initials to identify our various Colonies would be good for both time–saving and security. You could call each Colony by the initial of its city, and C for Colony, such as: SBC for Santa Barbara Colony; SDC for San Diego Colony, CC for Coachella Colony, KC for Kentucky, OFC for Ohio Farm Colony‚ DC for Detroit Colony, etc. If you should have any problem with duplicate letters, such as Coachella and Cincy‚ you could insert the initial of the state, such as: CCC and COC. What do you think about that? Let me know your opinions. Saves time!

45. SELAH COLONIES: I doubt if any of our Colonies can be hidden, any more than a city that is set on a hill! Even a small, quiet Colony for babes in a rural area we have found to be almost more conspicuous and arouse more curiosity from the local-yokels than some of our city Colonies. You can't make a move in a small town or rural area, but what it's news and everybody knows about it; and to try to tell 'em you're a group of a dozen or two dozen so called writers might really get a laugh if they get a look at 'em, and then they'd think for sure you were up to some kind of funny business, because they certainly wouldn't believe it! So for the benefit of those neighbours or country folks who drop by to say hello and see who you are and what you're doing, as they always do and always will—I know, we've lived in the country a good many years, and you can't get away with a thing without everybody knowing about it, and if they can't find out the truth, they'll make up something—you might as well either tell 'em the facts, or cook up some better excuse for so many kids being there and living together in one house. You're bound to get a semi-official social call from the country sheriff or one of his deputies to casually, in a friendly fashion, find out who's living there and why, because that's his business—and if you beat around the bush, he's apt to be even more suspicious. To say you're helping under-privileged city kids for the summer might work, as you suggest, but such kids are not usually that old‚ and what're you gonna do when Winter comes? As we've already found out at Merkle and Kentucky, the so-called clandestine Colonies are about as concealed as a candle on a candlestick in a dark place. If it's dark enough‚ you even can see a candle flame miles away, and most places are plenty dark, let me tell you! So we're about as conspicuous as a sore thumb swathed in bandages, and everybody's gonna ask how we got that way.

46. SO YOU MIGHT AS WELL TELL 'EM THE TRUTH, as Merkle and Kentucky have done, with very good results, and still plenty of time left for training the babes. Frankly, how you witness to and handle these visitors is a good clinical illustration to them of how to do it‚ and will be a valuable asset and a visible lesson for part of their training, even though you feel it takes a lot of your valuable time‚ it is worth it for both the visitor's sake and the babes' sake as well as your own sake, in creating good will and good public relations in the community—and you're gonna need it.

47. WE HAD A RATHER SAD PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE ALONG THIS LINE in just such a situation in our early days near Wilmore‚ as some of you may recall, in which our still bearded and long-haired kids really blasted a small-town community with some pretty heavy witnessing, and probably some lack of wisdom‚ without any previous warning or explanation to local officials; so that they so infuriated the local citizens that they were all surrounded and busted one night by the suspicious gendarmerie for an ID checkup, disorderly conduct, disturbing the peace, or whatnot. They can use any one of a dozen excuses, including suspected vagrancy, suspicious characters, etc.—anything to check you out—and in this latter case, our own poor dear Dorcas didn't get back out for quite a while, because of a checkup on previous offenses. All they have to do is teletype Washington and they'll have a full report on you, known as a "Rap Sheet," back in 15 seconds of all your arrests, any scrapes with the law‚ even for traffic violations, even if the case was dropped or you weren't convicted—so you can't get away with much anymore in this electronic, computerised age. There's an all-seeing "Big Brother" eye watching you!

48. SO TO AVOID SUCH WORSE HASSLES AND EVEN CLOSER SCRUTINY and perhaps an official investigation such as this‚ I'm beginning to believe, thanks to the Lord and our current wave of good publicity and our so far unbesmirched name, that THE BEST THING TO DO IS BE AS OPEN AND HONEST AS POSSIBLE, tell 'em who you are, where you're from, and why you're there! Such as: "Why yes, of course! We're members of the Children of God. You've probably seen us on TV or in the papers, or heard us on the radio. We're a Christian youth organisation dedicated to reaching youth for Christ, and turning them away from crime and drugs and violence and teaching them to be peaceful‚ useful, and constructive citizens, studying the Bible in preparation for preaching the Gospel to others. There are hundreds of us in many Colonies like this across the nation‚ on TV, etc."—Impress the System! Use it!