Angels & Spiritual Gifts

Angels and Spiritual Gifts

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Fruits of Spiritual Harvest: Barley

Of the seven fruits God guaranteed the Israelites in the Promised Land, Barley seemingly stands out as the most mundane. But, this humble grain stood as an example of how God intended His People to fully rely on Him for their all their physical necessities.

Though we typically think of barley in relation to the feeding of the 5,000 Jewish men, with five barley loaves and two small fish, during Passover, there were multiple instances where it was used to miraculously provide for the physical requirements of those faithful enough to follow the instruction of God’s Prophets.

Barley, as explained in a previous article, stood as a kind of national grain for Israel (Judges 7:13). It was typically the food of the poor (2 Kings 7:1) and often fed to animals as fodder (1 Kings 4:28) and would have been the main and sometimes only source of flour during lean times.

During a great famine, Prophet Elijah asked a destitute widow for a small piece of bread to eat and she replied that she only had enough [barley] flour and oil to make a single serving for her and her son to split between them before they died. Elijah explained that if she made him food first, her supply of [barley] flour and oil would not run out. She trusted the Man of God and her faithfulness was rewarded by God blessing her pantry with a constant supply to feed the widow, her son, and Elijah during the food crisis (ref. 1 Kings 17:8-16).

Prophet Elijah’s successor, Elisha also experienced a severe drought and while gathered with a school of prophetic students for a meal, a servant went out foraging and accidentally gathered Citrullus colocynthis, a poisonous desert gourd, and cut it up into the stew. The men gathered ate the stew and quickly realized that “there was death in the pot“. This poisoning would have led to severe intestinal, kidney, and brain damage and possibly death. Elisha, in response, took [barley] flour and mixed it into the poisoned pottage and fed this to the dying men. It would have taken an extraordinary level of faith to trust that basic [barley] flour would have purified the stew and that eating this new mixture would heal rather than further poison them (ref. 2 Kings 4:38-41).

Citrullus colocynthis -Poisonous Desert Gourd

Later, a man from Baalshalisha brought Prophet Elisha “bread of the Firstfruits, twenty loaves of barley” which Elisha instructed his servant to distribute amongst the hundred men in the group. After his servant questions the command, Elisha explains that not only would the twenty loaves fill these hundred men, but they would have leftover as well (ref. 2 Kings 4:42-44). The man from Baalshalisha and Elisha’s servant’s faithfulness led to a miracle which served as a precursor to Christ’s feeding of the multitudes.

Passover and the Feast of First Fruits overlapped with the barley harvest and the need to remove all leavening from your household before Passover meant you deeply cleaned out your pantry of all grain before the feast. This essentially eliminated your backup food supplies if the barley crop failed, forcing you to wait for and rely on the wheat harvest, during Pentecost, nearly two months later.

The man from Baalshalisha faithfully brought his Firstfruits, despite being in the middle of an intense famine, trusting that God would provide a future barley harvest. The young boy who gave his meal of five barley loaves and two fishes, which led to the feeding of the 5,000 Jewish men during Passover, was fundamentally surrendering his only source of food security, demonstrating an extreme faith to fully rely on God’s promise to provide for his current and future needs.

Though it was often overlooked, Barley was center stage during the feeding of faithful flocks during some of the most extreme food shortages of the Israel’s history. Barley epitomized a people who were faithful, trusting, and fully reliant on God to provide everything that they needed. Today, we recognize that God not only supplies all of our physical needs, but through the blessing of the Holy Ghost, particularly during our most desperate moments, all of the spiritual needs of the Faithful are met as well.


Prepared by, Kent Simpson, Apostolic Prophet & Eric Sepulveda, PMT Administrator


Fruits of Spiritual Harvest-Wheat

Fruits of Spiritual Harvest-Wheat


When the Israelites were entering the Promised Land, God told them it would be filled with seven distinct fruits as signs of His Abundance and Presence in the country. The first of these named fruits was wheat, which not only proved to be an essential source of food for its ability to be stored long-term, but was a symbol of those whose fruits would be everlasting.

Wheat was first mentioned in Genesis 30:14, when Patriarch Jacob and his growing family were participating in the wheat harvest, which was one of the most economically important to Israel. The wheat harvest was also the framework for the Feast of Weeks, known today as Pentecost, when the early Church first received the Holy Spirit.

Jesus referenced the wheat harvest in the parable of the tares, describing the Kingdom of Heaven as a field planted with good seeds, which had been corrupted by weeds sown by the enemy. Though the servants advocated removing the weeds, the master explained that doing so would root up the good wheat as well. Instead, the master suggested that they wait till harvest time, then the reapers would be able to distinguish between the weeds and wheat, based on their fruiting bodies, and then separate them to be burned or put into the master’s storehouse (ref. Matthew 12:24-30).

Lolium temulentum, typically known as darnel, poison darnel, darnel ryegrass or cockle is suspected of being the weeds referred to in this parable. This is due to the fact that up until the plant matures and begins to produce fruit, it is difficult to distinguish between wheat. More heinously, this weed’s name “temelentus” means “drunk” in Latin to describe the drunken nausea commonly associated with eating the grain, after it has been infected by a common fungus, which can lead to death if consumed.

Jesus wanted to stress that there would be many followers that had the appearance of being Christians, but it was by their fruits that each would be differentiated. There was also a stark contrast between how each would ultimately be dealt with, the toxic tares and the life-giving grain would be harvested and protected in the barn.

Jesus also uses the wheat cultivation as a way to explain the process of producing fruit, saying that “unless a kernel of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit“. Christ further clarifies that if a man loves his life, he will lose it; but those who forgo this world to serve and follow Christ, will experience eternal life, beside Christ, and will be honored by the Father (ref. John 12:24-26).

This was a difficult concept to accept for people who expected Christ to bring a physical kingdom. They anticipated that He would be ruling and reigning from an earthly throne, but He was very direct about the fact that His Body and their physical expectations must die away in order to produce spiritual fruits.

Wheat was an essential foodstuff for the ancient world and Christ used its husbandry to explain how His Followers would be distinct, based on their fruits, compared to those who simply claimed His Name. Wheat was further used to explain that we must forgo material things to produce spiritual crops. The wheat harvest was also the moment when the Holy Spirit first filled the early Church.

God promised Israel a land blessed with a generous wheat harvest. He promised His Church would be blessed with the Holy Spirit, that, if they followed and worshiped Him, they would produce spiritual fruits, and that they would be a part of the elect who would be separated from the rest of the world to be taken to Heaven. As Pentecost approaches, we pray that you are filled with the Holy Spirit, and producing spiritual fruits in anticipation for eternity, in His Spiritual Kingdom.


Prepared by, Kent Simpson, Apostolic Prophet & Eric Sepulveda, PMT Administrator


You Will Know them by their Fruits

You Will Know them by their Fruits


When God brought Israel into the Promised Land, He reassured them that this country would not only be overflowing with milk and honey, but a rich bountiful harvest of the best produce. These fruits had special symbolism in the land of Israel and were used as a way to explain important principles about the spiritual kingdom Christ had prepared for His Disciples and the spiritual fruit He expected of them.

The fruits of the Promised Land, typically referred to as the Seven Species, were some of the earliest promises God made to the Israelites, as He brought them “into a good land – a land with brooks, streams, and deep springs gushing out into the valleys and hills; a land with wheat and barley, vines and fig trees, pomegranates, olive oil and date honey” (Deuteronomy 8:7-8).

Jewish Oral tradition believed these were the only acceptable first fruits that could be offered at the Temple in Jerusalem. Any fruits from foreign cultivation were not of the lands of Israel and thus not blessings from God and not worthy of sacrifice.

Christ recognized that false teachers would sow discord and confusion amongst the people and He warned His Followers to pay attention to the ultimate results of people’s actions. Though they prophesied in Christ’s name, cast out demons, and did many wonderful works, Christ would deny them and toss them aside because their work and their fruits were not of God.

It was only those who did God’s Heavenly Will who would enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, and only the good fruits of the Spirits that would enter the storehouse. Christ illustrated that we would recognize someone sent of Him by their fruits. Just as men would not gather grapes from thorns or figs from thistles, it is only from good trees that we collect good fruits and that every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire (ref. Matthew 7).

Even before Christ’s Baptism, John recognized the Pharisees and Sadducees as a generation of vipers that had failed to “bear fruits in keeping with repentance” because they thought to themselves that “[having] Abraham as [their] father” was enough to spare them from the “axe ready at the root of the trees…that do not produce good fruit, [which} would be cut down and thrown into the fire” (Matthew 3:7-10).

Over the next several weeks we will explore the Seven Species (wheat, barley, grapes, figs, pomegranate, olives, and dates) and what they meant to the ancient Israelites, how their meanings developed in the time of the early Christians and what they mean to those of us who live in the current age.


Prepared by, Kent Simpson, Apostolic Prophet & Eric Sepulveda, PMT Administrator


Christ: The First Fruit of the Awakening

Christ: The First Fruit of the Awakening


Our previous article explored how Nisan 17 served as the dividing marker between the Old Ways and the New Blessings God had in store for His People. This starting point for counting towards the Feast of Weeks, also known as Pentecost, was the day of Christ’s Resurrection, which declared that He was the Firstfruits of those who slept and would experience the Spiritual Awakening.

The first mention of the Feast of Firstfruits may have been in Genesis 4, when Cain and Abel offered their gifts to God. Cain brought “an offering to the LORD of the fruit of the ground” compared to the “the firstlings of his flock and of their fat portions” that Abel offered. “The Lord had regard for Abel and his offering,” while Cain’s offering was disregarded, possibly because Cain did not offer the Firstfruits and thus the best of his harvest, while Abel did. This set a precedent for future worshipers and their offerings.

The establishment of Firstfruits as one of the Feasts of the Lord, was first mentioned in Leviticus 23, explaining that it would fall on the Sunday following Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Matthew (28:1), Mark (16:9), Luke (24:1), and John (20:19) all reinforce the fact that Christ was resurrected on this “first day of the week” after His Crucifixion on Passover.

The Feast of Firstfruits occurred during the ripening of the barley harvest, which was appropriate, since Israel was often closely associated with barley, which stood as a kind of national grain. When Judge Gideon was fearful of attacking a massive army with a dwindled 300 man force, God instructed Gideon to sneak to the nearby enemy camp and listen to the dream a soldier was recalling to another about a round loaf of barley bread destroying the camp. The fellow soldier understood the barley bread as a symbol for Israel, which was about to defeat them in battle. The famous feeding of the five thousand, which was made up of a population of Jews preparing for Christ’s second ministry Passover, was fed with five small barley loaves and two fish. This symbolism emphasized the fact that Christ first came to save and reap the House of Israel, before the rest of the world, as we will later see in the wheat harvest beginning at Pentecost.

When Christ rose on the Day of Firstfruits, people would have been “[bringing] a sheaf of the firstfruits of [their] harvest to the priest” in the Temple of Jerusalem. The Temple priests would have been taking these offerings and “[waving] them before the Lord,…on their behalf” as a demonstration that the worshiper had fulfilled the statute and recognized God as the source of the coming harvest.

Firstfruits were meant to remind the Israelites that the Lord heard their ancestors’ voices in their affliction and oppression, and brought them out of Egypt with a mighty hand, great terror and signs and wonders. He then brought them to “a land flowing with milk and honey”, so they were obligated to bring the firstfruits of the land which God had given them (ref. Deuteronomy 26:5-10).

The physical Promised Land that Israel inherited, was a gift from God that required physical offerings as thanks for a physical harvest. In like manner, the spiritual kingdom that Christ had won for His People, when he conquered Death, would require spiritual offerings as thanks for a spiritual harvest. Just as the Israelites were collecting the new produce from the grains they had sown into the ground, “Christ was now risen from the dead, and [had] become the firstfruits of [those] that slept” (1 Corinthians 15:20).

Christ’s Resurrection, which coincided with Firstfruits, should remind Christians of the affliction and oppression we had previous experienced under the slavery of sin, and how, through Jesus’s signs, wonders, and death on the cross, He bought our salvation and offers us the chance to be part of His Spiritual Kingdom, overflowing with blessings.

The Feast of Firstfruits was the initiation of the new harvest that was about to begin and served as a reminder to the Children of Israel of how their God delivered them and brought them into a prosperous country. Christ’s Resurrection was the inauguration of the Spiritual Harvest of those who slept and would be awakened, transformed. Just as the Israelites delighted in the fruits they were about to enjoy, we received a greater reward in the Firstfruits of the Spirit.


Prepared by, Kent Simpson, Apostolic Prophet & Eric Sepulveda, PMT Administrator