Which Comes First: The Revelation or the Artwork?
--By Mama Maria, December 2003 (Maria#666; GP#3474; Post-it GN#12)
1 I love you! Peter and I are praying for you. We know that our life for the Lord isn't easy--and it seems as we get closer and closer to the End, a lot of things are becoming increasingly difficult. The battles are stronger, the attacks of the Enemy are more fierce, his lies are more believable, and your faith is tested repeatedly. But the Lord has shown us that ours is also a very great honor, that we can be living for Him in these last days, bearers of His full truth, destined to see many prophecies fulfilled as the events foretold thousands of years ago come to pass! He reminds us often that because of the great honor we have, which "many prophets and righteous men desired," we also must pass many tests and make sacrifices in order to be worthy of that honor. So don't be discouraged by the difficulties! They're part of our life for the Lord, and they can make you even stronger, wiser, more mature, and more useful.
2. Recently several of you sent us an animated slideshow (put together by one of our detractors) that was posted on the Web and was being circulated to Family members via e-mail. This presentation showed Family artwork--primarily Tamar's art, with one or two exceptions--alongside existing System art that she copied. In some cases a whole GN picture was a copy of existing art she had found on the Internet, although she had made changes to the background or facial expression or details of the picture. In other cases, only elements of the picture were copied and pieced together, such as the sword, the demons, an arm or a hand, or a body pose, etc.
3. This presentation was sprinkled with quotes from the Letters that described what was illustrated in the GN picture, as well as with quotes from Tamar's interview in the Zine , where she is giving the Lord all the glory for her art and explaining how much He likes to be involved in every picture that she draws and all the details.
4. The insinuation or the feeling you're left with when you watch this slideshow, with picture after picture that has been copied from System art either in whole or in part, alongside quotes from the visions or prophecies received, is that prophecy is fake, a product of someone's imagination. The underlying message is‚ "Because the pictures are copies of another artist's work, how can the prophecies be true?" Several of you have written us asking for prayer, because your faith was shaken when you saw this presentation, wondering if the spirit helpers and demons the Lord has revealed to us, as well as other spiritual concepts‚ were all just figments of someone's imagination, or worse yet, copied from some piece of art that in some cases isn't very godly or inspiring.
5. As convincing or clever as this slideshow may be, it's nothing more than an outright attack on our faith. It insinuates that:
1) The prophecies and visions in the GNs are made up, based on pictures someone saw previous to the revelation.
2) The Family can't come up with anything original. We're second-class cheaters.
3) Tamar is fooling everyone when she gives all the glory to the Lord in her interview in the Zine.
And I'm sure it left you with other disappointed or discouraged feelings too.
Copying art is not new
6. There are several points that I want to bring out that I think will help give you a better understanding of the way things really are, and that might also help you understand some things about art and publications a little more.
7. First of all, yes, it's true that Tamar copies other art in many of her drawings. That might be disillusioning for you, but she is what's known as a copy artist. That's what her talent is--she copies or traces parts of other pieces of art and adapts them to suit the style and concept that she's illustrating, using her gifts to combine it all and make it a good representation of the message the Lord has given.
8. The concept of copying art--whether in ideas, style, presentation, or finer details--is not new. It's probably not something many of you think about, because you don't live with artists and see all that goes into their work. If we had more time, I would ask all our artists in WS to give you a glimpse into how they do their work, as each artist has strong and weak points. Some artists are very good with a certain style, but find another style practically impossible.
9. Most artists, even if they're not copy artists‚ use reference material of some sort or another–-whether another artist's work, or photographs, or models, or whatever. In fact, there's a huge market for such materials on the Internet. If you do a web search on the term "artist reference," you'll find millions of hits, and many thousands of them are people selling photos, slides‚ reference books and guides and resources for artists. Some artists use more reference than others. Others need help and send their work to another artist to perfect whatever they have a hard time with--like hands, or hair, or body proportions, or animals, or intricate backgrounds, or whatever the case may be.
10. You might not realize this, but no artist is perfect or strong in every area of art, and many artists rely on help from others --either for the sake of speed or perfection. Even Michelangelo, for example, had whole schools of students that helped him with his great frescoes--not because he wasn't capable of painting them himself, but because with their help he was able to do many more.
11. For that matter, copying isn't particular to the art world. Musicians copy other songs and styles--even many of the great hymns of the past were copied from popular songs of their era. Writers copy ideas and writing styles from other writers. Movie makers copy concepts and characters and scenes from other movies. Architects copy the designs of their buildings from other architects. Web designers create replicas of other sites they've seen and like. Even industrial designers copy extensively from their peers, which is why it's often so hard to tell one model of car from another at first glance these days!
12. In order to do her work, Tamar uses reference --she looks for pictures that depict the body pose or the idea that she needs‚ and then she uses parts of those pictures, modifying the facial expressions, sometimes the outfits, sometimes the backgrounds, to match the description the Lord has given. It saves her a tremendous amount of time, and it illustrates the concept that the Lord has given and gets the job done.
The prophecies come first‚ and the art follows
13. But the fact that Tamar copies art is not really the problem. The main message that those who created the art slideshow are hoping to get across is that the prophecies and visions that are published in the GNs are false or a figment of someone's imagination.
14. There's a problem with that reasoning, however, because Tamar doesn't receive very many of the visions and prophecies that are depicted in her art. In fact, in that slideshow there were 38 pieces of her art displayed (out of the 136 GN covers and illustrations she's drawn in recent years), and in only three cases did she receive the vision that she wound up illustrating. All the rest were received by other channels--channels who are not artists, and who have never seen the reference that Tamar uses.
15. In every case, after I put the GNs together, Tamar searched for reference that was similar to what the channel had described. The prophecy or vision was given first, gone over by me, put in a GN, and then Tamar was given the job of illustrating the GN. So in all cases the prophecy came first, and afterwards she searched for reference that depicted what the channel had received.
16. In the case of the pictures of Pan and Bacchus, as you'll see later in Tamar's explanation, she had seen reference pictures in the past that the Lord brought back to her mind as He was showing her those demons, and He brought those pictures to life. The Lord explains how and why He chose to do that, and I think you'll find it interesting. But even then, she first received the prophecy, and then later when she was given the job of illustrating those demons, she looked up reference that matched what the Lord had given when she received the prophecy. However, as I said‚ in most cases she wasn't the one who received the original prophecy.
17. (Jesus:) This is a storm that the Enemy has kicked up with the goal of discrediting My Word, but he will not win. It will test and try the faith of some, but that is all for the best. My children must be tested and tried, for great honor is to be theirs, and I must know who is worthy of it.
18. The Enemy is not only trying to discredit My Word, but he wants to preserve his evil forces. He's angry that his demons are being exposed and that a "face" is being put on them for My children to recognize and rebuke and actively fight. He's angry that you're learning so many concepts of the spirit that are going to spell such defeat for his kingdom of darkness. He's angry at My Words and he's trying to discredit My Words. But that's useless, because My Words are true, they work, and they have been proven over and over and over again, and will continue to be proven. So the lies will be exposed, and good will come of this. (End of message from Jesus.)
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Tamar's explanation and apology
19. (Mama:) I'll let Tamar explain a little bit here in her own words.
20. (Tamar:) Dear ones, I'm so sorry if my copying other artists' work has in any way caused you to doubt the veracity of the Lord's Words or visions. I can see how the presentation of this slideshow and the questions about my art could cause you to wonder‚ be left with questions, or even serious doubts. So I pray that this explanation will clear up your questions.
21. First of all‚ let me say that I'm what's known as a copy artist, which means to a large degree I lean on reference--in the form of photos and pictures from various sources--in composing and putting together my pictures. This is the talent the Lord's given me and the way I've drawn for many years now.
22. Of course, I feel that it would be wonderful if the Lord had given me the gift of literally being able to get "spirit drawings from Heaven," but with me that's not the case. To my way of thinking, the ideal would be to be able to draw completely freehand without the aid of photos, models or reference, but I've learned to accept and thank the Lord for the talent He has given me. It's a "lesser" talent, I know--and I've struggled with that and taken it to the Lord many times myself--but it's one which the Lord has always sweetly encouraged me that He can continue to use for His glory if I continue to yield to Him.
23. From my experience‚ almost every artist has reference material of some kind to help them in their work. It's particularly helpful in that it saves a great deal of time, which would otherwise be laboriously spent trying to draw something that you can't picture in your mind alone. The fact that other GN artists before me used reference and copied pictures from time to time, and the Lord was able to use those pictures for His glory, liberated me and encouraged me.
24. Prior to joining the Family, while attending art school‚ I learned how much copying was just part of life within the art and graphics world. Something was always a copy of something else. Copying was the norm--whether copying an idea, or part of a picture, or even a large part of a picture with just a small adaptation made. It was the accepted norm for many artists in the world. Prior to this I think I had somewhat of an idealistic view of art-–that it all had to be totally original. Even the realization that top artists and designers use photos, models and other pictures was new to me. I was shocked that people actually did that. Now that broke my bottle, but once I realized this and took my unrealistic ideals regarding art off the pedestal I'd placed them on, that's when I felt encouraged that even my talent--however small--could be used and developed.
25. Anyway, back to the slideshow. Certain GN covers were presented, as well as the System art reference I copied for these covers. This is true; I copied those pictures. However, I was not the channel that received most of those visions or descriptions, with the exception of three. Because I was the channel who received the vision of Pan and Bacchus, I can see how this could cause doubt that the vision and pictures the Lord gave were real, particularly when portions of the vision are so close to what's depicted in the System reference material I used. That understandably would raise questions.
26. The Lord had already revealed to Mama through another message months earlier that Pan and Bacchus were fighting our youth. So the original revelation about them and the way they fight us had already been received. When the Lord showed Mama that it was time to get that revelation about those two demons out to the Family, she asked me to ask the Lord for a picture of them so that we could visualize them, as that often helps in being able to really fight them.
27. However, I want you, my dear Family, to know that when I sat down to pray and receive the Lord's descriptions of those demons, I was very desperate. I don't look forward to asking the Lord what demons look like; it's difficult for me, not to mention being a real step of faith to ask the Lord such things. Just as I always do when hearing from Him, I asked the Lord to clear my mind of anything but the pictures, descriptions and words that He wanted to give me. And those are the pictures I saw when I prayed--those same System reference pictures I had long ago stored away in my reference directory. I had last seen those pictures at least a year or a year and a half before receiving the vision of these demons. I did not look at those pictures prior to receiving this prophecy assignment or praying, nor did I refer to them throughout the vision and prophecy I received.
28. Now why the Lord chose to bring those pictures to my mind as a description of Pan and Bacchus, I don't know. I just described what I was seeing, and those pictures literally became reality--not just a picture on paper anymore. At the time I simply trusted the Lord that He knew what He was doing in showing me a description of these demons that was very similar to those particular reference pictures that I had seen before. In the past, the Lord has told us that demons can take on many different forms. When Mama had someone ask the Lord about this, He explained that He chose to make things easy for me by recalling and using these particular pictures as a good starting point for the depiction and description of these demons--something which would be easy and quick for me to translate from concept to paper.
The Lord uses what we know to explain or illustrate what we don't know
29. (Mama:) I was curious as to why the Lord would bring those pictures to her mind. Of course‚ when the Lord speaks to us‚ He will often bring things to mind that we know--verses from the Bible, quotes from Dad, experiences that we can relate to--and He uses those as part of His message. He even sometimes uses things that we might not consider so spiritual, such as advertising slogans, stories or songs from the world, and even pictures from System sources.
30. Remember Dad's vision of the goddesses? (ML #224, Vol.2). He was looking at a photo from Playboy magazine, and the picture seemed to come to life and give a message from the goddess of America, which inspired Dad to give a message on reaching the American young people. So it's not that unusual for the Lord to draw from our experiences or surroundings to give us new insights and understanding. But I was curious and thought you might be too, so we checked, and here's what He said:
31. (Jesus:) I brought those pictures to Tamar's mind because they were a fairly accurate description of these demons --although, as I told you, they take on many forms. Most demons can take on many forms, but because you're not yet in the spirit world, it's easier for you to picture them, grasp their reality and really rebuke them when I describe them to you or give you a glimpse of how they look, even if it's not how they look all the time. That was the case with these two demons.
32. I searched through Tamar's mind and experiences for something that she could relate to, and then used that as a starting point, modifying the details that needed changing in order to be an accurate description of these two demons. If she had not had any experience or reference point that would have been a good starting point, I would have started from scratch to describe them. But usually when I need to give you a message or describe something to you‚ I will try to find something that you can relate it to‚ because that gives you faith to get started and often makes it easier for you to receive the message. (End of message from Jesus.)
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33. (Tamar:) I hope this helps explain these two particular pictures of Pan and Bacchus. I especially pray that it helps to resolve any doubts you might have regarding either the Lord's Words or the visions due to my having received the vision and then copied the very similar art reference. I know the Lord's Words are true because I've seen their fruit in my own life and because I've heard of their fruit in the lives of others. I know I'm human and I make mistakes, but when I ask bread of the Father in prophecy, I believe He's not going to give me a stone. I'm very sorry if my having used this System reference material in any way distracted or cast a shadow on the Lord's Words. If this has happened, I take the blame--something which is my responsibility alone to bear.
34. (Mama:) Please let this strengthen your faith, dear Family, not weaken it. The Lord's Words are true and I have confidence in Tamar's ability to hear from Him. It's up to you how you receive it, of course, and I know that's a test sometimes--one that the Lord allows, because He hopes it will strengthen you.
35. You know, Tamar didn't have to bring up the fact that she received the messages describing Pan and Bacchus and later drew the pictures of them. We didn't mention that in the original GN about them and we didn't have to mention it here. In fact, we knew some of you would have questions when we brought it up. But we wanted to be honest and open with you and explain how this happened, and when we checked with the Lord on this, He confirmed that it was a good idea and gave us the following wise counsel:
36. (Jesus:) This is an example of being honest even if it might not "bolster your case." You are truthfully explaining how things happen sometimes, and it can strengthen My brides' faith if they choose to see the spiritual realities at work. For some, it will cause questions, but even those can strengthen their faith if they'll bring them to Me. While everything would seem more uncomplicated without this example, sometimes I allow these things purposely‚ knowing the end result, because it will be a test for My children. I must allow tests. That's how you grow and how your faith is strengthened.
37. After that, it's up to people whether they want to believe My Words or the doubts of the Enemy, which he will be screaming in their ears, because he's about to be defeated. It's their call. That's what free choice, life on Earth‚ and tests of your faith are all about. You must decide. And it's in these kinds of situations that you really benefit if you've been obedient to remain in the Word and nurture your faith, because then these things will just roll like water off a duck's back. Whereas if your faith is weaker, it can be a much more painful struggle. (End of message from Jesus.)
(Mama:) If you're tempted to believe the apostates ' words and advice over God's Word and the things Peter and I have said over the last few years in many different GNs … then you'd be wise to ask the Lord why. If you are having a hard time believing His Word or certain specifics in His Word, then go to Him about it personally. If you're really serious about living for Jesus, then you've got to live His Word, because that's the basis of our faith. And how can you live His Word if you don't believe it? It's very important, folks! (ML #3458:17, GN 1043).
38. (Tamar:) It may help you to know that even though Mama and my teamworkers realize I am a copy artist and that I use reference for my work, they don't see what reference I use for the pictures, nor how much reference I use or copy. They also did not know that I was copying so extensively. My co-workers are not artists and are not familiar with the world of art reference. I work alone in my room, my reference is on my computer, and I've never been in the habit of displaying my reference or showing those I work with what reference material I use for my pictures. However, I do circulate the art ideas and finalized GN picture to people in Mama's Home and other units for their suggestions and input. Then Mama final approves the picture.
39. Just as I explained in my Zine interview‚ on every picture I ask the Lord for the idea, then I check in with Him and ask Him on each further step--including what reference I can use and what I need to change or adapt on the reference so that it carries His Spirit. Almost always--even when I'm copying a picture of a person's entire body or form--the Lord leads me to change the face or certain features, so that the picture has the right spirit. That's where the spirit is most often visibly captured--in the face, the eyes, and the countenance. So even though I use reference, I still faithfully take each piece of reference material--no matter how small-–before the Lord, and ask Him if it's the right reference to use.
40. However, I know that there have been times where I have leaned on reference too much and more or less completely copied an existing System picture. This was my mistake, not Mama's or Peter's or anyone else's. As I said‚ Mama and those I work with aren't aware of what reference I use‚ or how much. Of course they trust that I'll be prayerful and discern what reference to use and what not to use. But in reality‚ the buck stops with me when it comes to what reference I use or how much of it.
41. So my prayer is that despite any mistake or blame factor here--of my going overboard in the use of reference and copying pictures--you won't allow this to steal your faith in the truth of His Words or wonder why Mama allowed me to copy System reference. As I mentioned, Mama isn't involved in the reference aspect, but certainly when it comes time for her to approve a picture, she is very attuned and gifted in discerning any discrepancies or ways in which a picture could send the wrong signal, or doesn't accurately portray the Lord's Words, or doesn't convey enough of the Lord's Spirit.
42. In retrospect, I know I crossed the line in copying too much. I've always been insecure about my gift and felt I didn't do a very good job all on my own, so I've sometimes defaulted to using reference automatically--whereas I know the Lord wants me to have more faith and to expand and grow and reach out for His power to work in me more fully. I'm very sorry if my leaning on this crutch has caused your faith to be hurt. I also should have given credit where credit was due when a picture was a complete copy. I do pray this explanation helps and answers any questions you may have.
43. Now you see how much I need your prayers. It's a priceless privilege to illustrate the Lord's Words, and every day I thank our dear Husband for this very special place of service and this calling He's given me. But it's also a responsibility, one that I feel the weight of. I don't take that responsibility lightly or casually. In fact, I think this ministry has gotten me more desperate than I've ever been in my whole life. The greatest desire of my heart is to do the very best I can in illustrating the Lord's Words, and my desire is to give you, my dear Family, the very best representation and portrayal of His Words that I can. Please pray that I can continue to do and be all that the Lord wants me to do and be. (End of note from Tamar.)
The Enemy's attempts to discredit the Word
44. (Mama:) We're not really worried that Tamar copied some art. It was a mistake in some cases to copy so much or to not to give the original artist credit, and we will remedy that. In some cases the art she was copying was drawn by an artist who emphasized the dark side. As Tamar explained earlier, we weren't aware of the reference she was using, and she takes responsibility for that. In some cases it was necessary, because the picture needed to depict demons and the evils of the Enemy, and in other cases it wasn't. In the future she will use more inspiring reference when possible.
45. While she's going to use more positive reference when she can, there will still be times she'll need to use the ugly stuff in order to get the job done. The Lord commends her for being willing to wade through the uninspiring reference when necessary, and spend the needed time getting cleaned up afterwards.
46. (Jesus:) Be thankful that your dear artist has been willing to wade through the uninspiring reference to find the pictures that help to depict these unpleasant spiritual realities. It's not fun, and it wasn't good or uplifting for her spirit, but she did it for you. And because she was faithful to seek Me for My protection, and to spend time with Me afterwards cleansing her spirit, I didn't allow it to affect her permanently. But still, it's a dirty job to look at unpleasant works of art that depict spiritual realities of the dark side.
47. So pray for those like your artists, media teams, shepherds and others, who, as part of their job for whatever reason, must at times wade through things that are unpleasant and uninspiring. All of you must be mindful of this to a certain extent, for, like "Dirty Dishes," you all have to sometimes get dirty in order to witness and be My light in the dark places. And I commend you for your willingness to do it for Me. (End of message from Jesus.)
48. (Mama:) In the future, she will use more inspiring reference when possible, and in all cases she will continue to ask the Lord to give the picture His light and Spirit, and He certainly has anointed her to portray that. So please, dear Family, don't let Tamar's use of System reference material stumble you or become a big deal to you.
49. What should be a big deal to you, however, is that the Enemy is trying to discredit the Word. That's his purpose. He's out to attack your faith. I'm sorry that you have to go through these tests. But the Enemy is fighting, and will continue to fight. He'll continue to come up with brilliant plans, façades and mirages that could throw you for a loop if your faith is shaky or if you're looking to man instead of to the Lord, or trying to figure things out and have everything make sense in the physical‚ rather than in the spirit. The Lord said:
50. (Jesus:) This attack by your enemies doesn't faze Me--if it wasn't this, it would be something else. Nevertheless, I am the Victor. That is already decided. I already suffered on the cross and rose again, defeating the worst powers of evil. I'm not worried about the outcome.
51. Ultimately it's up to each of you to decide where your faith lies. The Enemy's attacks and tactics will only become more intense, more believable, more deceiving as time goes on. The Antichrist will resort to actual miracles--Satan will empower him to do miracles similar to those My children do, and many will be deceived-–not only by the miracles, but by the cleverness of the lies, the cunningness of his words. These small attacks are only a foretaste. His attacks will only intensify with time in his attempts to lead people away from Me, to stumble them, to cause them to turn away from their faith. But I have warned you. I have prepared My children. And I must allow their faith to be tested. (End of message from Jesus.)
52. (Mama:) So where does your faith lie, dear Family? How will you take this test? Now that Tamar has humbly confessed her mistake and we've explained what happened, will you focus on her mistakes or on the Enemy's attacks on your faith?
53. Yes, Tamar made some mistakes. She went too far in some cases in her sincere desire to illustrate some of these demons and spirit beings. But the insinuations and twisting of those who are attacking her in this slideshow are far more vile and wrong in the sight of God‚ because they're distorting things to imply that God's Words aren't real. It's part of the Enemy's attempts to bury the truth and wonders of the spirit world, as well as keep the horrors of Satan from being exposed for what they are.
54. This isn't just an attack on Tamar's art, but on the truth and the Word, with its true goal being to destroy your faith in prophecy and in me as the wine taster. So resist these attacks in the spirit and fight back! Go to the Word. Claim the keys! "When your faith has been shaken by doubts, lies, and slander through the mouths of your enemies, use the keys of testimony and conviction to take the attacking initiative. When Satan bombards you, stand up and fight!"
(Jesus:) The Family will be pushed to the limit to try their faith. The faithful will stand in the end. Those who remain will be stronger than ever, and well able and ready to build the greater church. Those who leave will be happier for their choice, although even some of them will be used of Me to purge, purify, and make white the Family. There will be yet more apostates, more detractors with outlandish "stories" to test and try the hearts of the children of David. (ML #3361:61, GN 957).
What it all comes down to
55. I'm sorry that this presentation by our detractors made it look like the prophecies in the GNs are contrived and thus can't be believed. But really, in spite of the mistakes made on Tamar's part, it's still a test that the Lord is allowing, because we are so blessed to receive so many of His Words, so many revelations from the spirit world. Granted, some of them are a bit far-out. Some of them take time for us to absorb, because they're new and wild and really different.
56. But what it all comes down to is, do the Lord's Words work for you? Do they bring you comfort? Do they give you strength? Do they have the answers you need? If so‚ then that's your answer. No matter what the Devil does to try to discredit them‚ you can stand firm, knowing that they work in your own heart and life, and they are real.
57. And continuing with that line of thinking, do the pictures on the GNs help to illustrate the Lord's Words and the concepts He's explaining, the revelations He's giving? Of course, they fall far short of the realities of the spirit world, but that's why the Lord says that "eye hath not seen," because much of it He's keeping as a surprise! But at least the art is something, illustrating it in a way that we can understand and remember and retain as illustrations of the concepts the Lord instructs us about.
58. If that's the case, and you know it works, then what does it matter if the picture or portions of it were adapted so that our dear artist could realistically complete the artwork needed to illustrate the Lord's Words? If anything, you should thank her for being humble enough to not feel like she has to do it all herself, for your sake.
59. (Jesus:) There will always be mistakes made --by the people you live with, by people you love and respect, by people you look up to--no matter how hard everyone tries to do the right thing. That's because you're human and not perfect. It's part of My plan for mistakes to happen‚ to remind you and everyone that only I am perfect, and remind you how much you need Me. You must remember that; otherwise, between now and the time I come back, the Enemy and even your own carnal mind and nature will supply plenty of reasons for you to quit, to be stumbled, or to lose faith. There will always be tests and temptations to quit. As there have been in the past, there will continue to be so today and in the future. You must decide where your faith lies. Is it in the infallibility of imperfect men and women, or is it in Me and My perfect control and ability to make even bad things--including mistakes, sins, or errors--work for your good?
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More messages on art and the Enemy's attacks
60. (Mama:) Following are more points to consider and words of wisdom from our wonderful Husband and dear Dad.
61. (Jesus:) The Enemy knows that many of you struggle with the explanations of the spiritual warfare already. You are sometimes tempted to feel that the descriptions of the demons and spirit helpers are overdone‚ or something that goes just a bit too far. He would love to push you over the edge with this train of thought to the point that you don't believe My warnings and instruction about those who fight you, and you don't call on those who could help you. Thus the Enemy would have gained a great advantage in his fight against you. That's his hope, his goal.
62. That's what he's trying to do in discrediting My Words, and specifically the revelations that I have blessed you with, My children of David. He doesn't like being exposed, so he'll try anything to keep you from believing the things I've revealed to you about the reality of the spirit world. Don't give away your advantage in the spiritual warfare through unbelief of what I've revealed to you! Call the Enemy's bluff! Try My Words, and see if they are not true. For if they are put to the test in faith, you will find that they do work, the Enemy is exposed‚ and victory is yours! (End of message from Jesus.)
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63. (Dad:) It's just like the Devil to throw a curve ball like this! He'll use whatever tactics he can, employ whatever means he can, and spread whatever stories he can‚ to sow doubt and to hurt the Family's faith.
64. The Enemy is fighting-–and fighting hard--for the souls of the Lord's children. He's employing whatever means he can to pull Family members away from the Lord, to weaken their faith. This latest attack is just another one of the distortions of the truth that he's inspiring folks to circulate around the Family in an attempt to hurt people's faith.
65. The notion that the visions and messages in the GNs are based on System artwork is a lie spun in the depths of Hell. It's a very subtle one and a very believable one, especially when these folks have dug up the pictures to "prove it." But what they don't know is that it's just the opposite in reality. The messages and visions are received first--usually by a completely different channel--and then when Tamar is praying about the artwork and how to capture the message in a picture, the Lord will often lead her to use other pictures as her reference. Yes, there have been times when Tamar herself has gotten the vision and the Lord has shown her to use some of the reference material she's seen, but it's been under His inspiration and in a very small number of cases.
66. Just because she's using reference material, even if the picture she draws is almost a complete copy, that doesn't make the message or vision or spiritual realities any less real or true. Her artwork is a vehicle for people to be able to picture in their mind's eye what the Lord's talking about, the vision He's given, the spirit helper or demons He's revealed. And as we all know, and as the Lord has said about many of our spirit helpers and even some of the demons, they can often take on different forms. Obstacon, for example, appears as a fox, a handsome man, and an obese blob‚ but those are only three of his forms and there are many others.
67. Folks often forget, too, that many of these demons and spirit helpers have been around for a long time, and we're not the only ones in the world who have ever seen them. Many people, even those in the world, get glimpses of things or people in the spirit. Artists, even those who don't know the Lord, are usually spiritual types, and some of the things they draw are actual beings they've seen in the spirit or that they've been inspired to draw, whether that inspiration came from above or below.
68. If anything, this attack on our artwork should encourage you, because the Devil only fights what he's afraid of. If the pictures Tamar drew and the artwork she produced wasn't filled with the spirit and the essence of the New Wine, then the Enemy wouldn't fight it and try to discredit it. He fights it because he knows it's powerful, because he knows it helps people grasp the Word better, and because it's filled with the Lord's Spirit!
69. So that should encourage you, Tamar, knowing that you're on the right track, you're capturing the spirit of the Word, and that's why your work is a threat to the Enemy. Praise the Lord that you're doing something right, and that's why the Enemy's fighting! Fight to rise above! That's the first step to defeating the Enemy and ruining his ugly plans. (End of message from Dad.)
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70. (Jesus:) Who's to say that these other artists that Tamar has been copying have not had visions and seen these same helpers and demons? The spirit world is not a fantasy but a reality. When I led Tamar to images of it which I quickened to her, I was confirming that it was an image close to the reality of the spirit world, or at least close to one of the realities. Some of these spiritual beings can take on many forms, some which would be too difficult or scary to put down on paper. (End of message from Jesus.)
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71. (Jesus:) Most of the great and famous artists of the past used models to copy the human form or to copy nature, and their students copied them to learn how to draw well. All artists are copy artists, for only I am the true Creator. Some artists have used their talents to glorify Me and others to glorify themselves, or worse‚ the Devil. But no matter what, all inspiration comes from the spirit realm. Because some of the artists Tamar copied from got their inspiration from the dark side of that realm, their art is on the dark side. But Tamar has taken some of these dark pictures and given them light, exposing the Enemy in the process. She sought Me about the needed changes and used them to glorify Me and portray My Words and present them in their true light.
72. Eye hath not seen, neither is it revealed to man the glory and beauty of My realm--nor the awful ugliness of the netherworld--but through inspired art you can capture snippets of it. The only thing Tamar's art is doing is sparking the imaginations of men and opening their eyes to the Spirit, which has been wonderful, and I am pleased with it. (End of message from Jesus.)
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73. (Jesus:) Here's something that is a bit humbling for any artist to admit, but no artist can draw everything perfectly. Some can draw faces or hands; some can draw beautiful background scenes or can create the perfectly shaped and proportioned body; while others can draw animals so lifelike they almost seem to move. No artist, though, can do everything perfectly, and many can only do one or two of these exceptionally well.
74. In Tamar's case, it is difficult for her to proportion hands and bodies in unusual poses or angles, and even though she has visualized the picture I have given her to create and she sees it in her mind's eye‚ it is still very difficult to get it "just right" on paper. So she must do as most artists do--if she cannot avoid drawing such pictures, she must either ask for the help of another artist to draw the parts that are difficult or nearly impossible for her to get correct, or she must rely on reference material to help her get those particular things correct. This does not take away from the picture I have given or the accuracy of what was drawn. If anything, it enables the artist to more accurately illustrate My concept and image than if they tried to do it totally on their own. (End of message from Jesus.)
75. (Mama:) If you're still wondering about the validity of the Lord's Words after hearing this explanation, then please go to the Lord personally and ask Him to speak to you about it. If your faith is shaken and your trust is wavering, you need to get it sorted out with Him, or else the doubts will continue to grow and will pop up and haunt you in any situation where you really need to be able to rely on your faith. So ask the Lord your questions. Get His answers. Nurture your faith. Keep it‚ preserve it--not by closing yourself off, but by opening yourself up to our wonderful Husband and Lover Who understands all things‚ and can give you the explanations and answers that will make things right again.
76. Remember, just because something seems to be reality, that doesn't mean it is. The Enemy can make things seem very real too. But what is the true reality? What really works for you in your life? If it's the Lord's Words, then don't let anything cast doubt on them! Peter and I are praying for you and claiming the keys of faith and peace for you.
We love you dearly. Always yours in our wonderful Husband,
Questions to ask the Lord
77. (Prayer:) I praise You, dear Love, and thank You for these words and for setting things straight. Now that I've read Your written words to the Family as a whole on this, I'd like to get Your personal words to me as well. I call on the keys of prophecy and enlightenment. I claim Your promise that says no matter how we feel, if we claim the keys of yieldedness, You will cause us to be open, receptive channels to receive Your full counsel. Please take away my own thoughts and ideas and speak to me about the following questions:
- After hearing this news and reading this explanation, how is my faith doing? Is there anything I need to get sorted out with You? Are there any questions still on my heart that I need to ask You about? If so, can You please give me the questions and also answer them for me?
- You've told us that the lies of our detractors will increase as time goes on. Knowing this will happen, how can I nurture and preserve my faith? I want to stay open to You. Please give me a personal plan for the best way to do this.
- (Note: If applicable, please ask the Lord the following:) I admit that I'm sometimes tempted to believe our detractors' words and advice over Your Word and the things that Mama and Peter tell us. I sometimes struggle with believing certain specifics in Your Word. Why is this? What can I do about it? What do You want to tell me about this?
(Jesus:) Faith is a gift of the spirit that many of you, sad to say, have all but lost. You've lost your childlike faith to believe, to receive‚ to grow, and to see things through My eyes. Many of you have chosen the logical, analytical, carnal, fleshly road, and you've been walking that path for so long that it's now very difficult for you to see things in the spirit. Many of you have become dull and familiar with the spiritual realm after hearing about it for many years, and now there is a great wave of those of you who have turned toward the road of your carnal mind, choosing the road of skepticism over faith.
Yes, you do believe in angels and demons, but you take it only so far and no further. You have a hard time believing the realm of the spirit actually affects the physical realm so powerfully. So because you don't believe that, you have a hard time accepting the revelations of demons, spirit helpers, and the like. Most of you are content to just look at the demons and angels as far-off beings who don't really affect life on Earth. It's sad, but true. This isn't the case with everyone, but it's quite a widespread mentality--the rejection of hearing things explained in spiritual terms and instead wanting to sort out in your own mind how it all makes sense. This lack of faith is prevalent in many areas of your lives, not just the rejection of the spiritual warfare.
It's precisely because the Enemy is fighting so hard, and you haven't raised a standard against him by strengthening your spirits with the Word, that you are lacking in faith, and because you don't really realize it, you are becoming prey to his devices. The spiritual warfare has intensified and the ante has been upped, and My Words and truth do need to be explained more clearly now than ever before, because the Enemy fights it harder than ever. But oh, how I wish that you, My children, would return to the simplicity of My Spirit, to the faith of little babes sucking to receive My Words!
You must see things in the spirit! You've got to choose to see things with the eyes of faith, because there's so much that can never be explained in carnal or fleshly terms. There's so much about the dynamics of the spirit, My spiritual gifts, and the workings of the world of the spirit that you will never understand with your human mind, and which will never make sense to the scoffer, the doubter, or the unbeliever. But that's where faith comes in--faith of a little child, faith as a grain of mustard seed, faith that can move mountains, faith that transforms you and gives you understanding.
To choose the road of faith is a choice you have to make! It's a choice no one else can make for you! But it's a vital choice, because when you lose your faith, then you have lost everything, and you're in danger of becoming alienated from My Spirit. (End of message.) (ML #3458:70-72, 74-75, GN 1043).