Author Daneille Snowden

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When I was 7 years old I was born again! Five years later, the Lord filled me with His Holy Spirit and called me out to serve in full time service in the ministry. My heart is missions and a longing to love people into God's Kingdom.
I love to teach God's Word, pray with people and write. 
Soon, we are hoping our Jesus opens amazing doors to walk into mission endeavors.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Treasures Of Darkness

(c)daneillegraysnowden
Treasures Of Darkness  
  by Daneille Gray Snowden

Isaiah 45:3
"And I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places, that you may know that it is I, the Lord, the God of Israel, Who calls you by your name.

  The treasure is the DARKNESS! If we are to choose any of us would choose to pursue the riches of life with spunk, and an illumination of fun! Frankly though, that type of riches is found at the mall or a theme park such as Six Flags. 

   No one chooses to be in the darkness of life; this finding themselves in need, pain and loneliness. Yet, no matter who we are and where we live it comes--those long, difficult dark days inch into the paths of our lives. 


  Deep calls to deep (Ps. 42:7); can easily be said as darkness calls to darkness. Those deep places in life in oft times are dark. It's where we cry out from the deepest depths of our souls to God; longing to obtain the lasting treasures that bring us to that height of fulfillment & freedom. 


   In the Hebrew (Owtsar); Treasures are what has been laid (stored) up, a provision, it is what has been saved, they are priceless. 

   The key to obtaining this treasure of darkness is to have been and continue to be before the Light.  If we are absorbed by the Glory of God the darkness that comes will not overcome us. 

Yet! If we are just wearing the name tag ‘Christian’; and still yet are not living in God’s Presence; (not being truly sold out in surrender to Him) then when darkness comes, a person will face this as though he/she feels alone and not learn or receive any treasures from these moments in life. The opposite will come. He or she will gain nothing!


    Isaiah was born into an influential family, and was likely  related to Uzziah as a cousin. Isaiah's occupation was that of a Scribe/Reporter of the social plus political aspects of the Kingdom of Judah. This of course means that he spent much time with the King. [http://bible.org/article/introduction-isaiah]

   Uzziah was a good King of Judah, that loved and worshiped God faithfully.  He was also one of the Kings in the genealogy of Jesus, who reigned for 52 years until he was struck with leprosy and died. 

   Isaiah 6:1  "In the year that King Uzziah died, [in a vision] I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and the skirts of His train filled the [most holy part of the] temple." 
Isaiah’s time of darkness came…in a time of grief as well as being troubled about what he see’s ahead for Judah.  In this time of darkness…He Saw the Lord.  The treasure for Isaiah was vast!
  In this vision, God revealed to  Him that He Still Reigns, and still is on the Throne! He experienced the powerful authority of God accompanied with overflowing richness of His Glory.

      "...the treasures found in times of affliction are always of greater value; they are weighty with meaning; they are not easily forgotten."  [Kimberly Wagner]

   150 years later after Isaiah prophesied in Is. 45:1-3 ; the children of Israel were in bondage to their enemies. God here in this passage,  is actually speaking to a man who did not serve Him but was led by Him. [God’s Ways are higher than ours.] "Cyrus the Great became a popular ruler and brought down many unjust governments. His reputation of- 'Just Treatment' (to his captives) allowed him to take over even the great Babylon, in part because the citizens of Babylon were sick and tired of being treated so poorly."  Cyrus' Persian Empire, extended from India to the Mediterranean Sea and was the most powerful state in the world until its conquest two centuries later by Alexander the Great."
He was used to rescue & free more than 40,000 enslaved Jews and allowing them to return to Palestine.  [Info. from http://bible.org/question/what-does-isaiah-453-mean-%E2%80%9Ci-will-give-you-treasures-darkness%E2%80%9D]  

    During this time the  children of God were in captivity. Under a dark ruler. Their home lands laid in ruins; this truly was a time of darkness. This is the period of Ezekiel, Daniel, Ezra, Nehemiah and on. Coming forth through them were great prophecies for many to see and know Who God is, that delivered hope to the present and future generations.  
   
   God promised Cyrus in verse 3, as Israel’s God;  that He the Lord would give Cyrus possession of the- “Treasures of darkness.”  This referred to the wealth of the vanquished pagan nations which was customarily concealed in subterranean vaults. 
   "Cyrus did not receive these treasures as a result of his own suffering but as a result of a divine conquest."  [Kimberly Wagner]

     "OF" [In Is.45:3]; indicates an origin, or source & contents of something or someone.  My mind travels to think of a gold, diamond and even a coal mine. Their all there, not just in the darkness but a part of it. Yet, God said HE will give the treasures OF the darkness. 
   Darkness came to:
   * Abraham when he stood waiting for God to accept his sacrifice (Gen. 15:12b-"..and a horror; a terror, a shuddering fear of great darkness assailed and oppressed him..")
   * Moses on the mountain; in the "thick darkness" where God was..." (Deut. 5:22) 
   * Job:"looked for good" and "evil came" (Job 30:26).  
   * Prophets as they wept. 
   *Jacob was left alone" in the darkness and "a man wrestled with him until daybreak." (Gen. 32:24)
    *Jesus

     Darkness in the Hebrew is 'choshek’ which is an underground prison. This darkness does come even when God's people are living wholly to His Word, seeking Him and doing His Will.
Tozer called it;"The ministry of the night."   Spurgeon  preached about; "The child of light walking in darkness." 

     Many of us have been on road trips either in a car or train. As we all have road along in the brightness of day; sometimes we are taken through a pitch black tunnel. This last for just minutes till...'boom' we hit light again.

       Children of God do have those 'tunnel-times'. Once we were living in hope, joy and anticipation of great things to happen (in the Light); then the dark tunnels steals the light. We find ourselves grasping to the walls barely taking steps forward. We are still breathing, though we feel abandoned.  Thoughts of a future cannot even been entertained. Yet, the treasures are being cemented to our spirits. This is where we see that we are weak and undone; but we still have my Shepherd to pull me through. Psalms 139:12 "Even the darkness hides nothing from You, but the night shines as the day; the darkness and the light are both alike to You." 

Psalms 23:4 "Yes, though I walk through the [deep, sunless] valley of the shadow of death, I will fear or dread no evil, for You are with me; Your rod [to protect] and Your staff [to guide], they comfort me."

      The rod represents God's Strength, Power & Authority.  The Staff is what draws the sheep close to the Shepherd to guide it (them) the RIGHT way. Both are true treasures!

     I recall George Mueller upon the death of his first wife. This was his tunnel of darkness. Not hiding this from anyone he faced a pit of pain quite intense. Yet, he continued to grasp the walls all around, through this tunnel his faith we have seen that it only strengthened him more. He experienced intense wisdom and guidance as he was used to have the most impressive orphanage in all of England.  http://www.reformedreader.org/rbb/pierson/muellerofbristol/chapter16.htm

       “The Psalmist said that sometimes our walk would take us through the valley of the shadow of death, and that God would be there. There are treasures to be found even in the dark places if you have eyes to see and ears to hear…” [Bill Britton]

     Some of the treasures that are found in the dark places are: 
1-Our own helplessness     2-Our own emptiness.     3-  Our need of God  

   
While we are in the darkness:
a.) Remember what God has already done. 
b.)  Remember what His character is like.
c.) Keep moving on bit by bit if that is possible-keep living.
 [http://www.lastdaysministries.org/Mobile/default.aspx?group_id=1000040822&article_id=1000008637 W. Pratney]

      Ezekiel means; "God will strengthen' and at the age of 25, he was among the 3,000 upper class Jews who were exiled to Babylon. He and his wife dwelled on the bank of the Chebar River [Chebar means Mound of Deluge.]  His wife died rather young, in the ninth year of exile, when Ezekiel was 34 years of age."  [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ezekiel] 

      Ezekiel 1:1 “Now [when I was] in [my] thirtieth year, in the fourth month, in the fifth day of the month, as I was in the midst of captivity beside the river Chebar [in Babylonia], the heavens were opened and I saw visions of God.” 

   In this sad location (the mound of deluge), Ezekiel being one of the captive with his people: 
        He was the ONE man who raised his head to God as the others were bowed low. Right here  in the greatest darkness of his life. 

     "A saint of God is not raised on a bed of roses or developed in a hot house. A saint of God is developed in the fires of tribulation, in the testing , trails and darkness." [B.Britton]


     When we are seeking for answers to the difficulties that surround us-it is quite common thing to ask or look around-right? When we find what is needed; then no big deal; we then move on with life.  BUT...when we are facing the hardships that come and we proceed to do the same general procedure as before; sadly there are no answers  No grab and go! Then what...(well hopefully)....
     We see God all high and lifted up--in the Light of His glory the treasures that were in darkness as well as the hidden riches in the secret places are revealed!

     There is no 'grab & go'! There is falling on our face, as well as a melting away of fear, frustrations and need. For we are in the Presence of the great 'I AM'! He Who will and does supply all our needs; in ways that supersedes all human understanding is right there HIGH AND LIFTED UP. As with the Staff depicted in Ps. 23:4 as we are His, He faithfully pulls us up close to Him thus we walk in  the right path. Our treasure & reward is simply: Jesus!

Isaiah 50:10
10 Who is among you who [reverently] fears the Lord, who obeys the voice of His Servant, yet who walks in darkness and deep trouble and has no shining splendor [in his heart]? Let him rely on, trust in, and be confident in the name of the Lord, and let him lean upon and be supported by his God.

Treasures:
*Reliance On         *Trusting In     *Confidence In      *Leaning On 
*Supported By 
     As we live and mature, this is what a person needs more than anything else!
Treasures are priceless. For example a special relic from a loved one, cannot be sold. No money could equal what it is worth to us.
Riches do have a price tag on them.
God is not only offering but promising both. As we KNOW Him and Hear His Glorious, Loving and Powerful Voice call out our name!

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