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Catherine Brown: What Happens on the Altar Determines the Destiny of Individuals, Cities and Nations


by Catherine Brown
Sep 27, 2011

Steve ShultzFrom the desk of Steve Shultz:

Catherine Brown is a dear friend and I've enjoyed ministering with her. She is also a prolific writer/teacher. Catherine just returned from a trip to Uganda... and as you'll read – it was powerful! There is much for everyone to learn in her latest word. We are all part of the Body and are in this together.

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Catherine Brown

Ministry and Mission in Uganda

We have an altar... Hebrews 13:10

We were privileged to recently be back in Uganda for ministry and mission purposes once again. During our time there we were delighted to be part of the 6th annual Prayer Altar conference in Wakiso hosted by Life Changing Ministries. We were so blessed to work with dear friends, bishops, senior leaders, pastors and apostles from the nation.

After the conference we ministered in UCC and later in a youth prison and a children's home. God moved in miracle-working power and we give Him all the glory. Deaf ears were opened, the lame walked and, most importantly, people came to a deeper revelation of the love of God in Christ Jesus our Saviour – both in re-commitments and in new disciples. It was truly a life-changing trip for all.

On the first day of the conference just after I preached my foundational message, a mighty storm arose, which literally tore the tent pegs from the ground sweeping the tent canvases, tent poles and chairs all over the place. It was breathtaking to witness both the suddenness and severity of the change of weather and so moving to see how the people of God responded in the time of crisis.

Men of God held on to the tent coverings; many people fell to their faces in the mud and rain in worship to God; others moved into the place of powerful intercession. We stood corporately in our faith position and worshipped and prayed till God calmed the storm. We were then able to continue with a powerful time of meeting with God. Interestingly, the only thing that did not move during the storm was the "prayer altar" that had been built. When God is building His Church He powerfully establishes the prayer altar so that He might pour out the blessing of righteousness on a nation.

It was on the first night of the conference that I was in a time of deep prayer for Uganda, and God graced me with what I believe is a strategic and timely destiny word for the nation of Uganda. I shared this during the conference and we were able to make a corporate response. In particular, the Ugandan leaders who were present received the word and we prayed together in agreement for the will of God. May God grant us more grace and wisdom to properly steward this word and apply the revelation to our lives both individually and corporately.

As you read this vision, please stand with us in prayer for Uganda to take her God-ordained place in the nations and for Africa to be a blessing to the world.

Preface

Around two years ago, while in prayer for Uganda, the Lord spoke a word of revelation to me, which was simply this:

"Whatever happens on the altar determines the destiny of individuals, cities and nations. I am raising up a faithful priesthood like Zadok who will minister before Me in purity and righteousness" (see Ezekiel 44).

This word from the Lord has caused me to be in a two-year period of intense study of "altar ministry," both in Old Testament and New Testament contexts. However, despite the intensity of my ongoing study, prayers and further revelation on the subject, still I did not feel a release to preach or teach on this topic until I returned to Uganda. As you read the vision you will understand why this was so.

A Measuring Line at the Prayer Altar

...To Him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by His Blood, and has made us to be a Kingdom and priests to serve His God and Father – to Him be glory and power for ever and ever! Amen. Revelation 1:5-6

In the deep of night in prayer while seeking the face of God, Jesus appeared to me in a vision. In His hands was a measuring line, and He walked up to the prayer altar (that had been established in our Wakiso conference location) and began to measure it. The altar was covered with a royal blue curtain and I noticed a sign on it that read, "ALTERED." The Spirit of God spoke to my heart and explained that the prayer altar in Wakiso was symbolic of the prayer altar throughout Uganda. The royal blue is the colour we most associate with the priestly function.

It occurred to me as I saw the measuring line in the Lord's hands that it was important to consider why we measure. I thought immediately of our four precious children and how they have grown up over the years. From the first measuring mark we made on the wall to the latest, we rejoice in each of their development and growth. We measure to establish size, to check for growth or reduction and also to determine boundaries.

As Jesus measured the prayer altar it began to decrease in size, and it became so small that it was barely visible. The sadness on the Lord's face was unmistakable. I stood by His side and my heart ached for my beloved Uganda.

Uganda – An Altar Nation to Alter Nations

Another word appeared on the altar that replaced the first I had seen. This read "ALTERATION," and I felt a release of the power and mercy of God as simultaneously the Cross appeared to emerge from the altar. The Cross in all its majesty, power and beauty soared high into the air out from the altar and the red, black and yellow flag colours of Uganda began to flow from it. As a river of the redemptive Blood of Jesus started to flow from the Cross to the nation, the banner changed on the altar to read "UGANDA – AN ALTAR NATION."

Without a shadow of a doubt, I believe I witnessed the prayer destiny of Uganda being restored in front of my spiritual eyes. With prophetic insight and apostolic authority, Jesus was restoring Uganda to stand in her position before Him as a royal priesthood and an "altar" nation.

"Alter Nations"

The vision ended with a final word appearing on the prayer altar which read, "ALTER NATIONS." I understood by wisdom and revelation that when Uganda takes her place as an altar nation (a nation graced to create prayer altars and righteous altars to the Lord), then this blessing shall flow in Christ's transformative love and authority to change other nations for His glory.

A Brief Explanation of the Altar

While I can in no way offer an expository explanation of the altar in this article, perhaps it might be helpful to consider there are various "types" of altars, which we acknowledge as being relevant to a New Testament application.

An altar may be described as a meeting place between Heaven and earth, where God creates covenant (see Genesis 8) and where a priest offers either sacrifices or gifts. Importantly, we contextualise the altar ministry of Believers in the life of Christ our High Priest, who offered Himself as a one-time atoning sacrifice on the altar (of the Cross) for the sins of mankind, and who serves in the power of an indestructible, incorruptible life.

...To Him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by His Blood, and has made us to be a Kingdom and priests to serve His God and Father – to Him be glory and power for ever and ever! Amen. Revelation 1:5-6

A righteous altar is:

• A place of worship where sacrifices are brought and offered by men to God
• A meeting point between God and men
• A gate into the realm of the Spirit
• A place where God reveals Himself to men
• A place where covenant is carried out between God and men
• A place of revelation where God speaks to men
• A place where promises are made
• A place of power and authority in the grace of God
• A place where men draw strength from God
• A place of holiness by encountering the presence of the living God

It is important to understand that an altar can either be for God or for satan. An altar forms the legal ground for either a blessing or a curse: If the altar is established to and for the glory of God, then it will release a blessing; if an altar is established for the purposes of worshipping a false god or evil spirit, then it will release a curse (see the story of Gideon in the Book of Judges for the redemption of the Israelites).

An unrighteous altar is:

• A place of false worship where men offer worship and sacrifices to other gods or evil spirits
• A meeting point between evil spirits and men
• A gate into the spiritual realm
• A place where evil spirits reveal themselves to men
• A place where covenant is carried out between an evil deity/spirit and men
• A place where men draw power from unclean or evil spirits
• An unholy place

The Cross may be considered the ultimate expression of the altar, whereby Christ ministered in the fullness of His deity and His humanity in the capacity as High Priest at the altar (Hebrews 8:1-2) and also became the Passover Lamb sacrificed upon the altar. Christ is the Mediator of the New Covenant of grace, and His Blood has atoned for all mankind's sin. He ministers in the power of an indestructible and incorruptible life (see Hebrews 7:16a). The Cross helps us to understand the power and authority of God's love and His faithfulness as a covenant-initiating, covenant-blessing God.

1. Personal Altar (The Altar of our Hearts)

Apostle Paul spoke to the Church in Corinth, "For we are the temple of the living God" (2 Corinthians 6:16); and "your bodies are a temple" (1 Corinthians 3:16). If our bodies are to be considered the temple, then I think it is fair to say that the first altar we acknowledge is the place of our hearts, where we meet in covenant love relationship and communion with Christ.

2. The Family Altar

Another altar is the family altar, which we establish in our homes through prayer, worship, reading of the Word of God and righteous living. In this way we minister unto the Lord and thereby create an "altar," i.e. a meeting place with the living God. Joshua put it this way – "As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord!"

3. Community Altar

A further aspect of godly altar ministry is the place of meeting which happens in our communities to the glory of God. Most often we would consider our church meetings to be such a type. As tribes of Believers come together to worship and serve Christ, we carry the altar of His presence and power with us into every sphere of society. Apostle Paul teaches that we are fellow citizens and members of God's household. "In Him [Christ Jesus] the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord" (Ephesians 2:21).

4. National Altars

A fourth aspect of altar is that of national altars. These are places of significance in the history of a nation or people group and places where governmental authority and influence is established and/or exercised. Apostle Peter writes, "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light" (1 Peter 2:9).

5. Prayer Altar

The prayers of God's people are like incense, offered to Him on the heavenly altar.

Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all the saints, on the golden altar before the throne. Revelation 8:3

It is our joy to walk with Jesus in the nations! Thank you to all who walk with us in GGM to reach our vision to evangelise and disciple seven million souls and to the many other wonderful churches and ministries we are blessed to serve with.

We love and appreciate you.

In His service,

Catherine Brown
Founder/Director, Gatekeepers Global Ministries,
Co-Founder, Scottish Apostolic Networking

Email: admin@gatekeepers.org.uk

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