Between the Porch and the Altar

James Weidner III   -  

Joel 2:17-19 (ESV) 17 Between the vestibule (porch) and the altar let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep and say, “Spare your people, O LORD, and make not your heritage a reproach, a byword among the nations. Why should they say among the peoples, ‘Where is their God?’” The LORD Had Pity 18 Then the LORD became jealous for his land and had pity on his people. 19 The LORD answered and said to his people, “Behold, I am sending to you grain, wine, and oil, and you will be satisfied; and I will no more make you a reproach among the nations.

  1. Let us come and pray between the Porch and the Altar:

1.1 Call out and weep at the altar.

1.1.1. Stand in the gap.

1.1.2. The Lord is jealous for His people.

1.2There is a time for weeping. 

1.2.1. We weep for our own sins. 

1.2.2. When you stop weeping for yourself we begin to weep for the sins of the people.

1.3. Our heritage of the Lord. 

17… O LORD, and make not your heritage a reproach, a byword among the nations. Why should they say among the peoples, ‘Where is their God?’”

1.4. Restore our fortune our heritage.

Psalms 126:4 Restore our fortunes, O Lord, like steams in the Negeb. 5 those who sow in tears shall reap with shouts of joy! 6 He who goes out weeping, bearing seed for sowing, shall come home with shouts of joy, bringing sheaves with him. 

1.4.1.The Negev streams come from collecting basins incomparably larger than those of the Judean Desert.  When rain falls on the Negev mountains, water begins to flow into hundreds of tiny rivulets that drain into dozens of larger watercourses.  These carry the water, in ever-growing strength, to larger streams that can reach several hundred meters in width.

1.4.2. Those who “sow in tears and reap with songs of joy” is a parallel image.  The sowers put each tiny, precious seed into the ground, not knowing whether or not there would be a harvest.  And if the blessing of the harvest does come, each seed will have multiplied itself many dozens of times–like the tiny rivulets in the Negev that, together, form rushing streams.

1.5 Our Lord wants us to come first for the restoration to happen.

1.5.1. Ela… One who lives in my house is going to go into my refrigerator freely to feed themselves. When I was 17 yeas old I was homeless for a month or two. One who is just visiting will be much more hesitant.

2. Some effects of the altar of God being a priority in our journey:

Romans 13:11-14 (ESV) 11 Besides this you know the time, that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed. 12 The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13 Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and jealousy. 14 But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.

2.1 The church the wakes up. 

2.1.1.  “The church asleep is not only denuded of power but also of holiness” Arthur Wallis

2.1.2. Holiness is not optional but obligatory without which no one will see God.

2.2. The works of darkness are cast off

2.3. The armor of light is put on.

2.4. The war is engaged in. 

2.4.1. Ela… that which lulled the people of God asleep is removed with the battle cry to march forward.

2.4.2. Ela… Ancient War was many things but quiet was not one of them.

1 Peter 2:11 (ASV) Beloved, I beseech you as sojourners and pilgrims, to abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;

2.4.3.  War is to contend with carnal inclinations.

2.5. Sinners are saved. 

2.5.1. The voice of the Lord comes and awakens the Church, the voice of the Church then awakens the Lord, and the power of God is awakened to the saving of sinners.

2.5.2. Let us not be desensitized to the world of compromise around us.

  1. Preparing for The Great Day of the Lord is drawing near.

Zephaniah 1:1-3 (NKJV) 1 The word of the LORD which came to Zephaniah the son of Cushi, the son of Gedaliah, the son of Amariah, the son of Hezekiah, in the days of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah. 2 “I will utterly consume everything From the face of the land,” Says the LORD; 3 “I will consume man and beast; I will consume the birds of the heavens, The fish of the sea, And the stumbling blocks along with the wicked. I will cut off man from the face of the land,” Says the LORD.

Zephaniah 1:7 (NKJV) Be silent in the presence of the Lord GOD; For the day of the LORD is at hand, For the LORD has prepared a sacrifice; He has invited His guests.

Zephaniah 1:14-16 (NKJV) 14 The great day of the LORD is near; It is near and hastens quickly. The noise of the day of the LORD is bitter; There the mighty men shall cry out. 15 That day is a day of wrath, A day of trouble and distress, A day of devastation and desolation, A day of darkness and gloominess, A day of clouds and thick darkness, 16 A day of trumpet and alarm Against the fortified cities And against the high towers.

Zephaniah 1:17-18 (NKJV) 17 “I will bring distress upon men, And they shall walk like blind men, Because they have sinned against the LORD; Their blood shall be poured out like dust, And their flesh like refuse.” 18 Neither their silver nor their gold Shall be able to deliver them In the day of the LORD’S wrath; But the whole land shall be devoured By the fire of His jealousy, For He will make speedy riddance Of all those who dwell in the land.

3.1 The Great Day burning like a fire.

Malachi 4:1-2 (NKJV) 1 “For behold, the day is coming, Burning like an oven, And all the proud, yes, all who do wickedly will be stubble. And the day which is coming shall burn them up,” Says the LORD of hosts, “That will leave them neither root nor branch. 2 But to you who fear My name The Sun of Righteousness shall arise With healing in His wings; And you shall go out And grow fat like stall-fed calves.

3.1.1. The great day of God

3.1.2. The day is hastening fast.

3.1.3. The great day will come burning like a fire.

  1. Seek the Lord all you humble.

Zephaniah 2:3 (NKJV) Seek the LORD, all you meek of the earth, Who have upheld His justice. Seek righteousness, seek humility. It may be that you will be hidden In the day of the LORD’S anger.

4.1 Only the humble man or women can truly seek the Lord.

4.2. Seek humility.

4.2.1. Looking for ways to insert humility in all our actions.

4.2.2. Ela…Good works in one area of our life does not compensate for the lack of seeking the Lord and doing what is right in other areas of your life.

4.3. The pride of man keeps man from seeking the Lord and living right.

Zephaniah 3:1-2 (ESV) 1 Woe to her who is rebellious and defiled, the oppressing city! 2 She listens to no voice; she accepts no correction. She does not trust in the LORD; she does not draw near to her God. 

4.3.1. listening to no one. not receiving correction.

4.3.2. not trusting in the Lord

4.3.3. not drawing near to the Lord.

  1. The great day of revelation.

1 Corinthians 3:10-12 (ASV) 10 According to the grace of God which was given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder I laid a foundation; and another buildeth thereon. But let each man take heed how he buildeth thereon. 11 For other foundation can no man lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 But if any man buildeth on the foundation gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay, stubble;

1 Corinthians 3:13 each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done.

5.1 Take heed how one builds.

Psalms 127:1 Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain

5.1.1. Ela… The remodeling a simple room requires drawings, permits, beam installation, building a strong solid structure that is safe for all to use.

5.2. The great day will reveal each one’s work.

5.3. The great day is the revealer of the intentions of man’s heart.

5.3.1. The great discerner of the intentions of man’s heart.

5.3.2. The intentions of man can be cloaked, misinterpreted, misguided for selfish gain… but on that great day they lay bare before the Lord.

5.4. This is why we just have to allow some things to ride:

5.4.1. Give people a pass.

5.4.2. Let people back up.

5.4.3. Because no one can escape the great revelation.


Zep. 3:12

leave behind a humble people

a lowly people.

people who seek refuge in the name of the Lord.

Zep. 3:17

Mighty to save

He quiets us by His love.

He sings over our lives.

The restorer of fortunes.