Latest Book

70. THE TREE, THE WOOD, THE TRUTH
September 7, 2014
By Ernie Knoll
www.formypeople.org

 

In my dream, I am standing at the bottom of a dry river bed. I can tell that at one time it was wide and the water was deep. Now I can very easily walk from one side to the other. I look down at my feet and notice that the dirt is powdery dry. The guide angel is standing next to me. He smiles and tells me that today is a very special day, because it was three and a half years ago that I was given a very wonderful message in the dream, “Where Are You Looking?” He lifts his right arm and I watch as dry dirt from the river forms into letters of living water that rise into the air. I know that the living water represents Jesus. These are the words I see:

 

I suddenly feel someone holding my right hand, and I am instantly standing in the corridor. The Herald has been with me the entire time. He calls me by my heavenly name and says, “All you have belongs to the heavenly Father. What He has shown you is a message for everyone. He waits for each person to take the beautiful holy hand of Jesus. The Savior waits with His hand held out for those who decide to take it. He asks each one, ‘Where are you looking?’ Each should turn their eyes upon Jesus and look fully into His wonderful face. If they do this, all the things of this earth will grow strangely dim, but He will illuminate them by the light of His glory and His grace.” Calling me by my heavenly name, the Herald says that each should ask himself, “Where are you looking?”

 

The guide angel lowers his arm, and I watch the words continue to rise until I no longer see them. The river is still dry. I am told that we are not to place our focus on this old earth, because it will be destroyed along with those who have followed the leader of lies. Only those who hold tightly to the hand of He who is the Eternal Living Water will have their thirst quenched.1 The water of truth will flow through them.

 

Now I look behind me at the bank of the dry river bed and see several other angels standing there. The announcing angel extends his hand to assist me up from the dry river bed. Suddenly, a throng of angels appears. They kneel and bow their heads in reverence. The birds stop singing; the bugs cease their chirping. The wind stops blowing, and everything in nature becomes quiet.

 

Now I hear what sounds like rolling thunder along the dry river bed. Yet it comes down from the mountains and from everywhere. I hear the voices of God the Father, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit speaking as one. They are saying to look to the north for a sign of the early winged migration. Then I hear these words: “My tears will now burst forth and be so great that the ground will not absorb My tears, which are great because My heart aches. Great will be the flooding from My tears.2 The ground will move from My tears. The world will rejoice because the rain will finally come. Little do they understand that these are My tears that will come because of what I must now do. The ground will open up because of My wrath.3 Yet I suffer with great tears because of what I must now do. I asked each person to take the hand of Jesus. Your Savior waited with His hand held out for those who would decide to take it. I asked each, ‘Where are you looking?’4 My calendar shows that three and a half years are now over. It is time.”5

 

Now I watch all the angels step back as the Herald descends from above. He smiles at me and calls me by my heavenly name. I remember that when the Herald comes with angels, it is a very special message. Now he reveals that he has been asked to deliver a message of great truth which must be shared.

 

The dream changes and I now see a depiction of three identical thrones facing each other in a semi-circle. I know that the heavenly Father sits on one, Jesus sits on another one, and the Holy Spirit on the other. What I see is shown in a way that I can understand.

 

I listen as the Three discussed how They would save the two beings they created on Earth. Even though They knew from the beginning that Adam and Eve would sin, I understand that the discussion I witness is after Adam and Eve fell into sin.6 I hear Jesus speak of the creation of Adam and how He formed him from the dirt of the Earth. He speaks of how He caused Adam to sleep while He created Eve from one of Adam’s right ribs, showing that her place was always to be by Adam’s side as a helpmate.

 

Jesus pleaded with the Father and the Holy Spirit to carry out the plan to save Adam and Eve and the rest of mankind from Lucifer’s deception. He spoke of how He was willing to leave His throne in heaven in order to save them. I listen as the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit discuss the complete plan of salvation. The discussion seems to go on for a while, but I do not know the time frame. Then the Three came to a united, unified decision. Backup plans were made for those who would not choose to follow the divine plan.

 

I listen as They selected, before they were born, those who would be invited to serve, some with great difficulty. Many individuals throughout earth’s history would exist for the sole purpose of encouraging others. Each would stand as a testament to the universe of the great divine plan of salvation. Since the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit knew the beginning, They also know the end. They knew the path of many who walked for one purpose. I listen as Bible names are mentioned, such as Moses, the one who would receive God’s Ten Commandments; Stephen, the one who would be stoned; Abraham who would give birth to the Israelite nation; Noah who would build the ark; Enoch, who would walk with God, and many others who would stand as prophets with messages, like Isaiah and Daniel. There were those who would serve along with Jesus, from John even to Judas. Even Ellen White was chosen as a fulfilment of the testimony of Jesus.

 

I know the following words were penned before they were written on earth. “And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” Revelation 19:10.

 

Now I see the heavenly Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit in what I know to be the city of Jerusalem on this earth. I watch as Jesus kneels on the ground, and with His bare hands, He digs a hole. He looks up at the Father and the Holy Spirit. In His hands the Father holds what I know to be the seed of a tree. The Father hands the seed to the Holy Spirit, Who hands it to Jesus. Jesus takes the seed and places it in the ground. He covers it with dirt and forms a small mound over it. Then He stands up, and the Three form a semi-circle around the mound of dirt.

 

I notice the mound begins to glow very brightly, as if it were a light. A very small tree breaks through the ground, and immediately I see that it has three leaves. One is blue, one white, and the other is red. Blue represents God’s love and His law; white represents His righteousness; and red symbolizes the blood that would flow from Jesus. I know that the tree grew from the nutrients in the three colored leaves, and that after a short time those leaves fell to the ground and green leaves began to grow.

 

I hear the Father call many angels to come to the place where the tree grows. He tells them that this place is holy. I immediately remember how Moses was instructed to remove his sandals at the place of the burning bush, because God’s presence made the ground holy. The Father instructs heavenly angels to protect the tree from all humans, from the elements, and from Satan and his evil angels. No one is to disturb the tree. Immediately, heavenly angels form a protective circle around it.

 

I watch as on one occasion children came near the tree to play, but they lost interest and left. At another time, men with tree cutting tools came to the tree, but they decided to keep going without cutting it down.

 

At this point, I see the Father and the Holy Spirit look at each other and then Jesus. The Father reaches over and places His hands on the shoulders of Jesus. Jesus lowers His head. I hear Him speak, but I am unable to understand His words. I seem to know that it is time for a great separation. It is a very sad time, but it is necessary. Yet, it is a time of great rejoicing.

 

Instantly, I see the time when Jesus became like a small seed. The Father reached over and placed it in the hands of the Holy Spirit. I watch the Holy Spirit approach a woman who I know to be Mary, when she was engaged to Joseph. The Holy Spirit places the seed in her womb. Now I hear the voice of the Father as He proclaims, “Here is My Son, who created the Earth from nothing, who created Adam from the dirt of the Earth, who removed a rib from Adam and created a woman. A woman will now give birth to a Son who will save all who call upon His name, Emmanuel.” In my mind, the following words from Matthew 1:23 seem to pour forth as if living water: “Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.”

 

I think again about the dream “Where Are You Looking?” that I was shown three and a half years ago. I think of the man who lost everything and of those who sang the song, “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus.” I remember that the name Manny, which was used in the dream, actually represented Emmanuel. The Herald was told to say, “Each should turn their eyes upon Jesus and look fully into His wonderful face. If they do this, all the things of this earth will grow strangely dim, but He will illuminate them by the light of His glory and His grace.” Calling me by my heavenly name, the Herald says that each should ask himself, “Where are you looking?”

 

As I stand there, my mind quickly goes over the history of the earth beginning at the time when Jesus was placed in the womb of a virgin. I think of His birth, how He grew and learned, how He taught and nurtured. I think of His hand extended for all to take. All who grasp His hand will receive life without sin for all eternity. From childhood on, Jesus lived the life of a perfect servant, ever caring and serving.

 

I watch as the time comes when He who is God is to be beaten and placed on a cross. I watch as orders are given to a tree cutter to prepare a cross for the execution of Jesus. I watch as many angels guide the tree cutter’s footsteps. He is escorted to the same place where Jesus dug a hole in the ground and placed the seed into the ground. As the tree cutter approaches this special place, the angels move away from it. The tree that is now grown is to be used for the Savior’s cross. Now all who turn their eyes upon Jesus can be saved.

 

The tree cutter does what he was instructed to do. I watch as he cuts down the tree. As it lies on the ground, he proceeds to chop off the limbs and branches and places each one into a pile. He strips the bark off and places it all on the pile of wood. I am reminded of how Jesus was stripped of His clothing. The tree cutter then cuts the tree into smaller parts, and I see two square beams formed. He cuts a notch in each beam, so that they can be fitted together. He places a small block of wood at each end of one beam, where the hands of Jesus would be nailed, and His arms would be tied with rope. He places another small block at the bottom of the other beam where the feet of Jesus would be nailed. When His hands and feet were nailed, they were twisted in a way that would cause pain. The ropes also created pain. The soldiers then lifted the cross and dropped it into its place.

 

I watch as the tree cutter sets the tree debris on fire to burn it all. The Herald explains that this act symbolized one, last burnt offering. It served as an example of what should be done with leftover communion bread from the sacred service of the Lord’s Supper.7

 

Every effort must be taken to supply the right amount of bread and wine for those partaking. Only unfermented grape juice and unleavened bread should be used in the communion service.8 Once the bread and wine have been blessed, after all have partaken and the service is over, any who wish may respectfully partake of additional bread and wine. If there are still leftover emblems that have been blessed, these must be discarded in the proper way. The wine should be poured into a hole that has been dug into the ground, just as the blood of Jesus went into the ground. The bread must be placed in a container and carefully burned, until only ashes remain. If there are leftovers that have not been blessed, these may be eaten in a normal manner.

 

The dream changes and I now observe a dismal scene before me. I see the empty cross of Jesus that was a device of torture and death.9 After His death, He was carefully removed from the cross by the cutting of the ropes and the pulling out of the blocks of wood that held His hands and feet.

 

As Jesus rests in the tomb, the sky turns into a blood red sunset. The angels that guarded the special tree have gathered around the base of the cross. Directly above the cross, the sky is a dark blue. Suddenly, the sky fills with angels. I know that those on the earth cannot see or hear the scene that now plays out high above them. As I continue looking up, I see the Herald sing a note as the dark blue sky glows a bright white. Then all the angels begin to sing the hymn, “The Old Rugged Cross.” It is a song that had already been written before Jesus planted the tree. The words were already placed in the book of hymns in heaven before George Bennard was born. The words and the music to the hymn were penned during the great plan for the salvation of all.

 

I know that the ground was holy where the tree was planted for the cross. The tree was created to hold the Creator who was placed in the ground He created. Now angels sing about the importance of that tree and the cross. They sing about the tree, the wood, and the truth. They sing about Emmanuel.10

 

On a hill far away stood an old rugged cross,
The emblem of suffering and shame;
And I love that old cross where the dearest and best
For a world of lost sinners was slain.

Refrain:
So I’ll cherish the old rugged cross,
Till my trophies at last I lay down;
I will cling to the old rugged cross,
And exchange it some day for a crown.

O that old rugged cross, so despised by the world,
Has a wondrous attraction for me;
For the dear Lamb of God left His glory above
To bear it to dark Calvary.
Refrain

In that old rugged cross, stained with blood so divine,
A wondrous beauty I see,
For ’twas on that old cross Jesus suffered and died
To pardon and sanctify me.

Refrain

 

To the old rugged cross I will ever be true,
Its shame and reproach gladly bear;
Then He’ll call me some day to my home far away
Where His glory forever I’ll share.
Refrain*

 

As I stand looking at the scene, I feel very unworthy. We, who only need to take the hand of Jesus, are unworthy. Tears run down my face as I listen to these angels sing. They do not perform this hymn, but rather they sing each word, as if it were a gift spoken from the very mouth of the Holy Spirit. No earthly human could ever sing this hymn the way the angels sing it. They contemplate each word and sing from the heart.

 

I know that I serve as God’s messenger and share what I am shown, but I am undeserving. I now feel a warm hand on my shoulder. When I turn, I see the Herald handing me a white cloth to dry my face. He smiles and tells me that the message he is to give is that I am greatly loved, just as everyone is greatly loved.

 

The Herald tells me that it is time to share the following dream so that many can understand more of that beautiful song, “The Old Rugged Cross.” That old rugged cross is more important than we realize. The Herald explains that he is to show me something made possible by the old rugged cross.

 

He takes me to a room where a woman kneels by her bed. She folds her hands, bows her head, closes her eyes, and in silence begins to pray. I know who the woman is, but I do not know what she is praying. I ask the Herald if it is all right to share this part of the dream with her. He explains that I am to share it with her, because she is asking how she is to pray. She was told this dream before its posting for all to read.

 

The Herald says to look closely. I see what resembles smoke of different colors rising from this person to the Father’s throne.11 Jesus listens to the words as the Holy Spirit delivers them. The Herald states that the Father waits with anticipation to hear the supplications spoken. They are a most fragrant aroma to Him. The woman’s tender words are not written or rehearsed but rather spoken from the heart. This is what each of God’s people will do if they have taken the hand of Jesus.

 

The Herald tells me to look closely as he reaches out and takes a tiny particle of the smoke. Then he takes another particle and tells me to look carefully. I see what resembles a beautiful gem. The Herald reaches into the smoke again and grabs several particles and separates the particles from each other. He places them before me so that I can observe the many beautiful gems of different colors. He tells me to smell the aroma. Instantly, I smell many different and wonderful things, such as a variety of flowers, trees, and fruits. The Herald shares that it is because of Jesus that each of us can come to the Father and speak to Him.

 

The Herald pauses and explains that angels who serve wait for the Father to speak to them. Yet those of us on this earth, who take the hand of Emmanuel, have the privilege of speaking directly to the Father at any time. We are greatly loved, and the angels love to serve those of us whom He loves. The Father waits with great anticipation for each of us to speak with Him. Our prayers to Him are beautiful, and He greatly enjoys their aroma. He longs to provide and care for us.

 

At this point the Herald takes me back to the dry river bed. I look out and see the wind blow and dust rise. The Herald tells me to look to the north, and I notice many birds flying south. He points to a calendar, and I realize it is too early for the birds to begin flying south for the winter. I watch as many birds wing their way; some honk as they fly.

 

The Herald takes my hand and we ascend further up the bank. He extends his wings, which form a covering over me. The sky turns gray, clouds begin to form, and slowly raindrops start to fall. In what seems like a few seconds, more raindrops begin to fall. The rain hits the dry, dusty ground that has formed a hard surface, so it does not absorb the rain, and the water gets deeper. The once-dry river bed fills with water and begins to flow. In just minutes, there is a torrent of flowing water that quickly starts to rise. The Herald takes me to higher ground for safety. I watch as flooding and destruction become a worldwide event, as it reaps God’s sorrow. In some areas, the ground opens up into sinkholes to swallow large portions of the flooding. Great is the destruction. The drought is over, but God’s sorrow is visibly seen over all the earth.

 

The Herald reminds me that for three and a half years, God has waited for each to choose. Now it is time. It is with great sorrow that the heavenly Father is brought to tears because of what He must do now. As the rains begin, I see people singing praises to God for the blessing they are receiving. They do not understand His great sorrow. They do not understand that the rain is like His tears, because of what He must do. The world has suffered from drought, and now it is starting to experience God’s sorrow. Sadly, many will not understand. Only those who have taken the hand of Jesus, of Emmanuel, only those who have believed before the evidence mounted, only they will understand.

 

Where have you looked? Have you looked only wanting to place blame on the message and the messenger, or have you turned your eyes upon Jesus?12 Do you simply look at a cross, or do you think of the importance of the tree, the wood, and the truth? Jesus is the Creator of the tree. He was sacrificed on the wood. Jesus is the Way. No one comes to the Father except by taking the hand of Jesus, Emmanuel, who is the Truth.

     

  1. Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 4, p. 558 It is safe to let go every earthly support and take the hand of Him who lifted up and saved the sinking disciple on the stormy sea.

    John 4:14 But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.

    Jeremiah 17:13 O LORD, the hope of Israel, all that forsake thee shall be ashamed, and they that depart from me shall be written in the earth, because they have forsaken the LORD, the fountain of living waters.

  2. 1 Samuel 12:17 … he shall send thunder and rain; that ye may perceive and see that your wickedness is great, which ye have done in the sight of the LORD….

  3. Isaiah 28:21 For the LORD shall rise up as in mount Perazim, he shall be wroth as in the valley of Gibeon, that he may do his work, his strange work; and bring to pass his act, his strange act.

  4. Matthew 16:24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

  5. James 5:17 Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.

    Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 3, pp. 287-288 All such should learn from the example of Elijah. His word locked the treasures of heaven, the dew and rain, from the earth three years. His word alone was the key to unlock heaven and bring showers of rain.

  6. The Desire of Ages, p. 22-23 From the beginning, God and Christ knew of the apostasy of Satan, and of the fall of man through the deceptive power of the apostate. God did not ordain that sin should exist, but He foresaw its existence, and made provision to meet the terrible emergency.

    This was a voluntary sacrifice. Jesus might have remained at the Father's side. He might have retained the glory of heaven, and the homage of the angels. But He chose to give back the scepter into the Father's hands, and to step down from the throne of the universe, that He might bring light to the benighted [those in moral darkness], and life to the perishing.

    Manuscript Releases, Vol. 9, p. 230 After the fall of Adam and Eve, the race was plunged in hopeless misery, and it was then that this great plan of redemption was advanced. It was then the Son of God consented to leave His Father's throne, lay aside His royal crown, clothe Himself with humanity, take upon Him the nature of man, and become a man among men. He became a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief, wounded for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquities.

    Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 63 The Son of God, heaven's glorious Commander, was touched with pity for the fallen race. His heart was moved with infinite compassion as the woes of the lost world rose up before Him. But divine love had conceived a plan whereby man might be redeemed. The broken law of God demanded the life of the sinner. In all the universe there was but one who could, in behalf of man, satisfy its claims. Since the divine law is as sacred as God Himself, only one equal with God could make atonement for its transgression. None but Christ could redeem fallen man from the curse of the law and bring him again into harmony with Heaven. Christ would take upon Himself the guilt and shame of sin--sin so offensive to a holy God that it must separate the Father and His Son. Christ would reach to the depths of misery to rescue the ruined race.

  7. Exodus 12:8-10 And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it. Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with fire; his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof. And ye shall let nothing of it remain until the morning; and that which remaineth of it until the morning ye shall burn with fire.

  8. The Desire of Ages, p. 653 Christ is still at the table on which the paschal supper has been spread. The unleavened cakes used at the Passover season are before Him. The Passover wine, untouched by fermentation, is on the table. These emblems Christ employs to represent His own unblemished sacrifice. Nothing corrupted by fermentation, the symbol of sin and death, could represent the “Lamb without blemish and without spot.” 1 Peter 1:19.

  9. Philippians 2:8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

  10. Galatians 6:14 But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ….

  11. Revelation 8:4 And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel's hand.

  12. The Great Controversy, pp. 337-338 From age to age the warnings which God has sent to the world by his servants have been received with like incredulity and unbelief. When the iniquity of the antediluvians moved him to bring a flood of waters upon the earth, he first made known to them his purpose, that they might have opportunity to turn from their evil ways. For a hundred and twenty years was sounded in their ears the warning to repent, lest the wrath of God be manifested in their destruction. But the message seemed to them an idle tale, and they believed it not. Emboldened in their wickedness, they mocked the messenger of God, made light of his entreaties, and even accused him of presumption. How dare one man stand up against all the great men of the earth? If Noah's message were true, why did not all the world see it and believe it? One man's assertion against the wisdom of thousands! They would not credit the warning, nor would they seek shelter in the ark.

    Scoffers pointed to the things of nature,—to the unvarying succession of the seasons, to the blue skies that had never poured out rain, to the green fields refreshed by the soft dews of night,—and they cried out, “Doth he not speak parables?” In contempt they declared the preacher of righteousness to be a wild enthusiast; and they went on, more eager in their pursuit of pleasure, more intent upon their evil ways, than ever before. But their unbelief did not hinder the predicted event. God bore long with their wickedness, giving them ample opportunity for repentance; but at the appointed time his judgments were visited upon the rejecters of his mercy.

    Christ declares that there will exist similar unbelief concerning his second coming. As the people of Noah's day “knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so,” in the words of our Saviour, “shall also the coming of the Son of man be.” [Matthew 24:39.] When the professed people of God are uniting with the world, living as they live, and joining with them in forbidden pleasure; when the luxury of the world becomes the luxury of the church; when the marriage bells are chiming, and all are looking forward to many years of worldly prosperity,—then, suddenly as the lightning flashes from the heavens, will come the end of their bright visions and delusive hopes.

    The Spirit of Prophecy, Vol. 4, p. 208 The Lord, in his great mercy, does not bring judgments upon the earth without giving warning to its inhabitants by the mouth of his servants.... When the iniquity of the antediluvians moved him to bring a flood of waters upon the earth, he first made known to them his purpose, that they might have opportunity to turn from their evil ways.

* The Old Rugged Cross, lyrics by George Bennard