"UNDERSTANDING ON THE VARIOUS
LEVELS OF VISIONS AND REVELATIONS"
by Todd Bentley
Holy Desperation Lays
Hold Of Revelation
Although God is sovereign and, in his sovereignty, he releases visitations, I believe
we can take hold of God's promise in holy desperation and hunger and say, "God,
I want you to communicate with me the way that you communicated with them". The
Bible says Elijah was a man like us. If John can go into revelation, if Paul can
go into the third heaven, then I can have it too. If Peter can have trances, Daniel
can see angels, Gideon can have an angelic visitation and God can direct Mary and
Joseph with dreams and angels, then I believe I can experience those things too.
If these divine encounters are in the beginning of the Bible through to the end
of the Bible, then I will lay hold of it for myself. Iíve said to the Lord, "If
angels can come to Abraham's house, God, they can come to mine".
Before I started experiencing these things in my life, I came to that place in my
heart where I said, "I can have it!" Some of you reading this already know that.
Others of you need to think about whether God wants you to have visions, revelation,
or an audible voice from heaven. Could God want to bring you into the heavens, transport
or translate you?
A Teaching on the Levels of Revelation
As you ponder this question, let me lay a foundation by teaching about the difference
between all the levels of revelation. Now I've been to the third heaven, which is
the highest level. Whether or not I was in my body, I don't know. Iíve spoken to
many men and women who have been there. Some people call this place the "throne
zone". When you hit that level, itís very obvious.
In 2 Cor. 12:4, Paul tells us what the third heaven is. He says, "I was caught up
into paradise". It's the bosom and dwelling of God - it's throne zone - up there
where God dwells. By the way, the heavens can't contain Him, so although heaven
is a physical place, I think heaven is a lot more than we believe it is. Many believe
that there are geographical places in heaven just like there are geographical locations
in places on earth. You can go to South America or you can go to Hawaii. You can
go to Africa or Europe. The geography, industry, and culture are different in different
Spiritual Travel Through the Supernatural World
Are you enjoying the world that God created? God has made us a wonderful natural
creation and Heís created earth for us to enjoy. Heís given us natural senses to
touch, taste, smell, hear and feel the things of the natural realm and Heís given
us the ability to go places. In the same way, God has provided a spiritual creation
for us, the spiritual senses to experience it, and the ability to travel to different
places within this spiritual world. We have an inner man with inner ears, eyes and
other senses on the inside of us. In fact, because it is eternal, the spiritual
realm is even more real than the physical realm. Everything that we have in the
natural earthly realm came out of the invisible realm.
So I want to learn how to begin to touch, access and experience that invisible realm
on a daily basis. You may be thinking, "Wait a minute Todd. What if God doesn't
wants you to see?" You see, I come from a whole different paradigm now. Iíve come
to realize I have a heavenly Father called Daddy - Abba Father. If my daughter asks
me a question, I'd answer her. God also wants to answer us when we call on him.
He even says in Jeremiah 33:3 - "Call to me, and I will answer you, and show you
great and mighty things, which you do not know." You can't determine what you're
going to see, where you're going to go or what level of revelation it's going to
be. But you can ask and you can ask daily.
Learning to Disengage
Our Father wants us to cultivate a lifestyle of making ourselves available, positioning
ourselves before the Lord in quietness, learning how to disengage our understanding
and beginning to operate in the inner man with the inner eyes that we have. The
apostle Paul refers to those eyes in Ephesians 1:18. The reason God wants to give
you that spirit of wisdom and revelation and enlighten the eyes of your understanding
is for the knowledge of Him. And I believe that, even if I donít understand why
Iím having an experience, I can still grow in intimacy with Him. Often the Lord
blesses us with revelation just so we can see Him, experience Him and be with Him.
He wants us to live in that intimate place now rather than when we die in 70 years.
Although we cannot go into the heavens at will, not once when I made myself available
to go, did God not permit me to enter in. That may not be your testimony, that may
not be the way that it's going to be for you, but I've come to the place where I'll
take one to three hours to wait before the Lord every day and every time I will
receive revelation. I don't know what level; its not third heaven all the time,
but God speaks every day.
Heavenly Encounters In The Throne Zone
During my first third heaven experience, I was in my living room with a group of
intercessors and one of my pastors. We had a time of worship and an atmosphere came
into the room. I felt the glory. Although Iíd had many revelatory experiences before,
I'd never been in a third heaven experience. This may sound very unusual, but I'm
just going to be honest with you here. I was in the living room when I started to
enter this revelation. All of a sudden I shouted out, "The grass! Can you see the
grass?" I could feel it coming up through my toes. When I looked at the grass it
moved and it had life - the glory came off it. It was greener grass than you've
ever seen before. As I stepped on it, I could feel it under my feet. It was as if
the grass itself was alive and had personality. I'd look at it and it would say
things to me even though there was no actual conversation. There was life in that
grass; it was as if God himself was in it.
At first, everyone in my home thought I was crazy! Then people started getting scriptures
- at the moment I'd share something, the Lord would bring a verse to them associated
with the vision. Then suddenly, the walls of my apartment seemed to disappear. When
I looked out, I saw a forest and trees that went further than my eyes could see.
It became so real and vivid that, as I looked towards where my kitchen would have
been, I saw water an inch deep come pouring in out of the kitchen and come across
my carpet. The carpet actually looked wet - I thought my wife had left the bathtub
or the dishwasher on. I screamed, "The river just came into my living room!"
An Interactive Prophetic Experience
Nobody else knew what to do. Then the pastor jumped off the couch and threw himself
onto the floor in this revelatory river. I saw it rise a couple of feet and start
flowing across his back. And there was grass and trees - a full-on interactive prophetic
experience. The more I shared the vision and the more they'd engage themselves and
allow themselves to be taken into what I saw, the more it grew. Then I saw a tree
that looked like a huge oak - it was gold, silver and bronze all at the same time.
This huge tree covered my apartment; we were under the shade, and there was fruit
as big as my head. The branches were weighed down and just about breaking off.
By now there was a guy lying on his back, under the power. The others weren't seeing
the vision like I was; they are just experiencing it in the emotions realm. I saw
it and experienced it with all of my senses. Yet I still knew I was in my apartment.
After seeing this tree, I yelled out, "The tree of life!" When I said that, the
guy lying on the ground was acting as if he was eating fruit. But he hadn't seen
the tree. Then I said, "shhhhh" and there was nothing but silence. In the midst
of the silence, from a different realm, I could hear a sound, like a bass going
off on the inside of my spirit man. So I asked, "Can you hear it?"
However, they couldn't hear the sound. The same thing happened to Saul on the road
to Damascus. His companions saw the light, but they couldn't hear the voice. But
this experience was so real to me that I thought for sure the others could hear
it too. Next, I began to think, "The sound of the Lord God walking in the garden".
Eventually, I realized I was in the Garden of Eden, in Paradise. We were hiding
from the presence of the Lord and he was looking for us. We just lived this thing
Intimacy Is Godís Highest Purpose
By now some of you may be asking what the purpose of this prophetic experience was.
Did Adam have to have a purpose every morning other than just being - to be with
God and walk and talk in the cool of the day? Does every experience have to have
some kind of purpose that's going to benefit us? Perhaps, in many cases, there is
a purpose that we don't know yet in our understanding. I believe that, at times,
I see and experience things during prayer and intimate fellowship with God just
because he loves me and I love him. He created the heavens and the earth. Yes, I'm
a natural creation but I'm also a spiritual creation and I don't have to wait 70
years to get into those heavenly places. I can begin to access that spiritual realm
as God permits. As I become hungry for these divine encounters and as I make myself
available for His Spirit to take me up, things begin to take place. We just need
to cultivate a lifestyle of seeking for and living in the presence of the Lord.
On another occasion during my three-month season of soaking (in the glory presence
four to 12 hours a day) I had another dramatic third heaven experience. I was in
prayer and I felt the sensation of being sucked out of my body and being flung into
space. I could feel the G-force, the kind of feeling you get on a roller coaster.
My body began vibrating and I could even feel the force on my face - my face was
physically contorting. But I was in my living room. Here I was going through stars
and I wasnít even in a spaceship! Then I entered into another dimension where my
whole being was filled with a brilliant white light. Suddenly I felt the sensation
of landing. Next I was on a mountain, the wind was blowing and I could feel it.
I began to freak out. This had never happened before. Even though I was lying on
my carpet I felt a cold wind on my face. My senses felt the emotions of what I saw
but I could still feel the carpet under me.
This was only my second third heaven experience. I eventually came before the King,
the Lord of glory, the Lord of hosts. It would take hours to describe what took
place. These prophetic encounters happened before I was in the ministry. At the
end of that three-month season of visitation God called me into the ministry. During
that training time, the Lord equipped me and imparted things to me for what He had
called me to. But it took me two years to understand what took place on that mountain
by Todd Bentley
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