Our beloved fellow Last Days Disciples, this new series of articles is titled “Marching Orders for the Stephen Generation” and its purpose is to enhance our understanding of what we Last Days Disciples can expect in the coming days… and what our Father has already provided for us in the midst of everything and anything we may face. This series will strengthen and solidify the firm foundation of Truth that Holy Spirit has been imparting to our FMM family and will increase our resolve to fulfill the exhortation we find in Ephesians 6:10-18 (TLV):
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you are able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the worldly forces of this darkness, and against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you may be able to resist when the times are evil, and after you have done everything, to stand firm. Stand firm then! Buckle the belt of truth around your waist, and put on the breastplate of righteousness. Strap up your feet in readiness with the Good News of shalom. Above all, take up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Pray in the Ruach on every occasion, with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, keep alert with perseverance and supplication for all the kedoshim.”
We begin with the Original Marching Orders to bring into focus the enhancements found in the Marching Orders for the Stephen Generation. And the reason for that ‘upgrade’ given to us by the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) is because we live in uncharted territory… generations before us never faced the kind of things we do. They could not have conceived civilizations slowly self- destructing after decades of demonically inspired lies and deception. Those who lived during the days of great revivals and outpourings of the Spirit would never have imagined how those fires could have died down to smoldering embers.
So knowing how much the written and Living Word has revealed about the Last Days, I exhort you to take seriously the level of equipping this series offers as we work together to advance the Kingdom of our God and prepare for the coming of His beloved Son.
Love, Mum Nancy
(First received in 1988)
Marching Orders for
The Stephen Generation
(Updated adaptation made in 2021)
The Lord gave me the original ‘Marching Orders’ in the summer of 1988. Soon afterward, He started sending the downloads for what would eventually develop into the material that the Ultimate Journey Ministry shares so successfully today with those who participate in that ministry’s support group disciple training.
But after the Lord gave me the new assignment of cooperating with Him in giving birth to this current Follow Me Ministry, the Marching Orders are just as pertinent and necessary as ever. Only now we’ve updated them to reflect the atmosphere and urgency in which the Last Days disciples of today will be required to operate.
I call these Last Days Special Forces Disciples: ‘The Stephen Generation’, because they will finish constructing the ‘Highway in the Wilderness’ that will prepare the way for the Return of our risen Messiah. (See Isa. 40). And they will do it amid some extremely difficult and often dangerous circumstances… regardless of the cost to them. So they’ll have to do their work while resisting and opposing the forces of Darkness when the age-old war between Good and Evil reaches the zenith level of its intensity.
And since they’ll have to learn to persevere in their service to the Lord in dire and apparently impossible situations, they will be very aware of the fact that only the actual Presence of the risen Lord will be able to see them through. They will have to know what the disciple Stephen (in chapters 6 and 7 of the book of Acts) knew, and do what he did when it was his time to render his unforgettable service.
The Stephen Generation will have to be prepared and equipped to maintain the supernatural martyrs’ mindset focus that the valiant, unstoppable, disciple Stephen maintained and displayed, during his final moments on Earth. Nothing could deter or stop him or the other martyrs! They follow the totally focused example of our Lord! And authentic Last Days disciples will have to do the same. So the training true disciples receive is of vital importance. And that training is what these meditations are meant to help us unpack, explore, absorb, digest, and… embody… as we go through our ‘boot camp’ preparatory stages.
This War Was Won From The Beginning
I hope that now, you can understand more deeply what I mean when I mention that awesome Eternal ‘Wellspring’ that flows out of the Perfect Finished Work of God’s Living Word. The Good News didn’t start with Yeshua’s birth and the Gospel of Matthew. Nor did it start with the Book of Acts and the First Century believers that began to follow the Messiah in the First Century! No, the Root of all this goes back to the very beginning!
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was chaos and waste, Darkness was on the surface of the deep, and the Ruach Elohim was hovering upon the surface of the water.
“Then God said, “Let there be LIGHT!” and there was LIGHT. God saw that the LIGHT was good. So God distinguished the LIGHT from the Darkness. God called the Light “day,” and the Darkness He called “night.” So there was evening and there was morning—one day.” (Genesis 1:1-5 TLV, Emphasis added)
“In the beginning was the Word. The Word was with God, and THE WORD WAS GOD! He was with God in the beginning. All things were made through Him, and apart from Him nothing was made that has come into being. In Him was LIFE, and the LIFE was the LIGHT of men.The LIGHT shines in the Darkness, and the Darkness has not overpowered it!” (John 1:1-5 TLV, Emphasis added)
The Living Creative Word of God is the Root, or the Wellspring, out from which everything that God has created, flows and appears in space and time. As we ponder what happened to Stephen and his fellow disciples of the First Century, and see the glories that emanated from among the believers of the Renewed Covenant era, we might incorrectly assume that the impartation of the Holy Spirit shortly after the Lord’s Ascension into Heaven was the starting point of our victory over Satan and his powers of Darkness. But nothing could be further from the Truth! That’s not when God’s people were finally able to breathe easy and entertain hopes of gaining the upper hand against the Prince of Darkness and his hordes. God reveals that this was true even from the earliest centuries of their existence! God, and His Word, and His Spirit were already present… and they had already done all of the necessary work even before the dawn of Creation first appeared!
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Messiah. He chose us in the Messiah BEFORE THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD, to be holy and blameless before Him in love. He predestined us for adoption as sons through Messiah Yeshua, in keeping with the good pleasure of His will—to the glorious praise of His grace, with which He favored us through the One He loves!” (Ephesians 1:3-6 TLV, Emphasis added. See also Gen. 2:1-3 and Heb. 4:1-7)
Do you get it? Despite the libelous slanderous lies of the Father of Lies, God has always had everything well under control since before the very beginning of time! That’s why Adam and Eve and every human that came after them were legitimately able to rest in God’s Greatness and trust His Word with airtight faith and obedience, regardless of anything that the powers of Darkness would say or do to oppose or contradict God! It was never necessary for any created beings to try to take matters into their own hands!
How often throughout Israel’s history has the Lord honored His Covenant promises to His chosen people and saved them from certain death and destruction? Has Satan succeeded in destroying them, or are they still thriving? After Solomon’s temple was destroyed and Israel overrun by Babylon, and the people dragged off into captivity, did He not rescue them and enable Israel to be restored? And did He not see them through the brutal occupations of the Greeks, the Romans, and the Ottoman Empire? And in modern times, did He not do the same thing even after the Holocaust took place? Hasn’t He restored His people to their Promised Land? And does not every enemy that continues to rise up against them eventually crumble, disintegrate and disappear from the scene?
Our God Has Always Been Almighty God!
And He is always with His Covenant people. But the trouble has always been that God’s people do not remain faithfully in position to receive what He has already promised, given, and paid for on their behalf! And the same was true for the Messiah-believing Remnant of Israel in the New Covenant era. The storm of opposition that Israel’s unbelieving religious establishment of the First Century spewed against Stephen and the early followers of Yeshua, was an opportunity for God to continue the centuries old Covenant Faithfulness that God always showers upon the Remnant of His people. His everlasting Lovingkindness has been evident for thousands of years, starting with Adam and Eve and moving forward even to the end of this age!
Contrary to what the teachers of ‘Replacement Theology’ or ‘Supercessionism’ say, the New Covenant is not the era of God’s decision to forsake Israel and replace her with the Gentile Church, so that the ‘really good stuff’ God had always had in mind could finally be brought out from its hiding place in Eternity and spread out on God’s Banquet Table in modern times. No, that’s not it at all, as we can see from what Paul had to say to the Gentile believers in his letter to the First Century congregation that had been established in Rome:
“I say then, they did not stumble so as to fall, did they? May it never be! But by their false step salvation has come to the Gentiles, to provoke Israel to jealousy. Now if their (Israel’s) transgression leads to riches for the world, and their loss riches for the Gentiles, then how much more their Fullness! But I am speaking to you who are Gentiles. Insofar as I am an emissary to the Gentiles, I spotlight my ministry if somehow I might provoke to jealousy my own flesh and blood and save some of them. For if their rejection leads to the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead?
“If the firstfruit is holy, so is the whole batch of dough; and if the root is holy, so are the branches. But if some of the branches were broken off and you—being a wild olive—were grafted in among them and became a partaker of the root of the olive tree with its richness, do not boast against the branches.
“But if you do boast, it is not you who support THE ROOT, but THE ROOT supports you! You will say then, “Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.” True enough. They were broken off because of unbelief, and you stand by faith. Do not be arrogant, but fear—for if God did not spare the natural branches, neither will He spare you!” (Romans 11:11-21 TLV,Amplification and emphasis added)
So, what was Paul saying to the Jewish and non-Jewish New Covenant people of the First Century? What did He mean by ‘The Root’ that supports all Jews and Gentiles alike? What is that Root? Where does it come from? And how long has it been part of the story of God’s dealings with the human race? These are all questions we Last Days disciples will have to be able to answer… not merely intellectually from our ‘head knowledge’! No, we’ll have to have the answer abiding in the marrow of our bones and in the DNA that is in the essence and fibers of our spiritual makeup and our response to whatever may emerge around us! The Root is God’s Living Creative Word! And He became flesh to serve as Israel’s Blood Covenant Representative and Champion… committed to come to her defense against any and all enemies, human or demonic!
The Renewed Covenant Era was meant to ‘unpack’ and amplify and further fulfill the tremendous depths of God’s Covenant Revelation that God has been giving to us from the very Beginning! Nothing takes God by surprise! That Root of His Redemption and Restoration is ETERNAL! The Glory of His Truth existed even before the dawn of Creation. What is written in the Bible, leading up to the New Covenant apostles and First Century disciples, like Stephen, was merely unpacking what was originally embedded within God’s original Torah Revelation that the world had received through Moses! It is primeval, pristine, radical information that comes into this time and space dimension from Eternity! It is revelation concerning God’s Infinitely Perfect and All-Sufficient LIVING WORD! And that Eternal Word, out of which Israel was birthed, is what Paul refers to as ‘THE ROOT’!
So, no beloved, none of what is said about Yeshua and His first century disciples in the Renewed Covenant Era is a novel, late-breaking, news flash. It is more like a beautiful Tree of Life and Salvation, the root of which already existed in Pre-Creation Eternity! But now… the Root’s appearance in this dimension has progressed significantly throughout space and time. And, if we put its current growth stage into nuclear terms, we could say that it is reaching the state of ‘Critical Mass’! In other words, it is reaching the stage in its developing ‘unfolding’ that pertains to the climactic Fulfillment of all things that the Book of Revelation reveals and promises! The Eternal Fulfillment will soon begin to bloom and open up in all of its true God-given Glory in this dimension… in the full light of the Day of Visitation that will usher in the End of this Age!
So let’s look at this Genesis to Revelation emergence of Truth that has always been ours. And let’s see how much of it we know, and how much still has not yet entered our level of awareness. I’ve already said this is not about what’s in the Gospels or Acts, or the epistles! It’s not about the demise of Israel, and the new birth of God’s Plan B Gentile Church! No, it is about the continuing unfolding and revelation of God’s Living Word… who has been revealing Himself to us since the very beginning! The True Hero of the story and Star of the Show has always been, and always will be, the Living Word of Almighty God! He has done everything necessary to deal with Creation’s past, present and eternal future!
“Thus says Adonai: “Heaven is My throne, and the earth is My footstool. Where then is the House you would build for Me? Where is the place of My rest? For My hand has made all these things, so all these things came to be,” declares Adonai.
“But on this one will I look, one humble and of a contrite spirit, WHO TREMBLES AT MY WORD!” (Isaiah 66:1-2 TLV, Emphasis added)
God’s Living Word contains (on an eternal basis) everything in and about all of Creation within Himself… much more than is possible for any of us creatures to know! It’s all contained in the One who created it and who maintains it and who redeemed it and who is, even now, in the process of completely fulfilling it! And He’s doing it for the Glory and Honor of His Father… and for the best and highest GOOD of all of us! So, in this sense, there is no conflict or discrimination between Jew or Gentile, male or female, rich or poor, or free or slave! But all are to be ONE… in Messiah Yeshua!
All We Will Ever Need Is Found In Yeshua
So, that being the case, Messiah Yeshua also contains within Himself everything we disciples have ever needed to know, and everything we will ever need to be, or do, or have! To know and be one with Him, is to know and be one with everything else that could possibly exist! He contains all of the Fullness of God within Himself! It is through His Living creative Word that God has already revealed, accomplished, and situated everything necessary to create, redeem, and fully restore His beautiful Creation that was so horribly blasted and mutilated by Sin and Death, as caused by ‘the Father of Lies’ (See John 8:44).
“He is the Image of the invisible God, the Firstborn of all Creation. For by Him all things were created—in Heaven and on Earth, the seen and the unseen, whether thrones or angelic powers or rulers or authorities.
“All was created through Him and for Him. He exists before everything, and in Him all holds together. He is the Head of the Body, His Community. He is the Beginning, the Firstborn from the dead—so that He might come to have First Place in all things.
“For God was pleased to have all His Fullness dwell in Him and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, making peace through the blood of His cross—whether things on Earth or things in Heaven!” (Colossians 1:15-20 TLV, Emphasis added)
The era of the New Covenant, that emerged after Yeshua rose from the dead and ascended back into Heaven, is when God began to completely explain, unfold, and perfect everything He had created, revealed, commanded and promised since before the very Beginning through His Son, the Living Word! The era of the New (the renewed Abrahamic) Covenant is when God will fully unpack and proclaim… to the demonic powers of Darkness… and to the fallen human race that was so terribly mutilated by the ravages of Sin and Death… the wonder of the Fullness of what He, through His Word, had already done in Eternity… to cover and settle absolutely everything… about Creation’s past, present and future realities!
The Truth is, that our wonderful Eternal God IS the Perfect, Eternally Complete Answer to all of the questions, issues, and problems of all time! And Everything that is in Him, is contained within His Word. And His Word created and contains all of the Father’s Perfect, Finished Works of Creation, Redemption and Full Restoration! And His Word is the Messiah of Israel, and Lord of Creation, who has summoned us to follow Him! How do we follow Him? We learn to abide and interact continually with His Perfect Presence, because He will always be abiding and operating from within us from now on!
And so for us, everything has been provided in and by God’s Living Word made flesh! He has already supplied whatever was needed to render Creation completely Redeemed, Perfect, and Completely Restored! He made all of that Perfection available to those of us who, in ourselves, are nothing but helpless dust! Even though that is the case, concerning what we are in ourselves… IN HIM… all things are possible for us because now and forevermore… GOD’S LIVING WORD IS THE FULLNESS OF GOD’S ETERNAL LIFE THAT LIVES AND OPERATES WITHIN US! So, thanks to God’s eternally Triumphant and Successful Word, the Father of Lies has never ever had a chance of pulling off a successful rebellion!
“In Him we have redemption through His Blood—the removal of trespasses—in keeping with the Richness of His Grace that He lavished on us. In all Wisdom and Insight, He made known to us the Mystery of His will, in keeping with His good pleasure that He planned in Messiah.The Plan of the Fullness of Times is to bring all things together in the Messiah—both things in Heaven and things on Earth, ALL IN HIM.
“In Him we also were chosen, predestined according to His plan. He keeps working out all things according to the purpose of His will—so that we, who were first to put our hope in Messiah, might be for His glorious praise.” (Ephesians 1:3-12 TLV, Emphasis added)
“You know that you were redeemed from the futile way of life handed down from your ancestors—not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with precious blood like that of a lamb without defect or spot, the blood of Messiah. He was chosen before the foundation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake.” (1 Peter 1:18-20 TLV, Emphasis added)
Beloved, it will take all of eternity to try to unpack and grasp all the Revelation that the above texts contain. And even then, we won’t be able to fathom it all! God’s Living Creative Word has Created, Redeemed, and Finished off our faith to PERFECTION! That is why He is always to be recognized, exalted, praised, worshipped, obeyed, and thanked!
God’s Spirit enabled Enoch, Noah, Job, and other saints of God who went before us, to tap into and access this mother lode of revelation. God’s Word is the Eternal Preeminent Factor in everything that has, and will, happen to us, in us, and through us. And, since He will always be present to us, God also requires us to always look to, and rely upon, His Word. Our very limited minds will never even begin to take in every fact and reality concerning all there is to know in existence. But we don’t have to. Everything in existence comes out of God’s Living creative Word! He knows and comprehends it all, since He designed, fashioned and sustains it all. So when we Have Him living in us… WE HAVE EVERYTHING. He is our WISDOM! This is why we are to wait on Him and receive everything from Him. He is the one God has sent to guide us and provide for us everything we will ever need!
“Adonai is my Shepherd, I SHALL NOT (ever) WANT, He (perpetually) makes me lie down in green pastures. He (always) leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for His Name’s sake.
“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are (forever) with me: Your rod and Your staff (forever) comfort me. You prepare a (never-ending) table before me in the presence of my enemies. You have anointed my head with oil, my cup overflows. Surely (Your) Goodness and Mercy will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in (that is, I and my Covenant brethren will actually be,) the House of Adonai FOREVER!” (Psalm 23 TLV, Amplification and emphasis added)
The Eternal Word of God is the Treasury that contains the Infinite Supply of the Fruits of His Perfect Obedience to His Heavenly Father. And, as our Eternal Blood Covenant Representative, He has rendered to His Father, in our name, everything God’s Perfection requires of us! This is why all mankind, and especially His hand-picked disciples, must die to trusting in anyone or anything else that is created and temporal. We must look only and exclusively to Him and His Eternal Uncreated All-Sufficient Reality!
“Then Yeshua said to His disciples, “If anyone wants to follow after Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his (temporal radically independent Self-) life will lose it, but whoever loses his (temporary earthly Self-) life for My sake will find it!” (Matthew 16:24-25 TLV, Amplification and emphasis added)
Additional Articles in this series (available at www.follow-me-ministries.org website)