Roles and Descriptions
“How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!” Psalm 133:1
“Don’t forget to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without realizing it!” Hebrews 13.2
“When a stranger sojourns with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. You shall treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.” Leviticus 19:33-34
Riverside Webster’s Dictionary defines a Sojourner as someone who “resides (or stays) temporarily at a residence for a brief time.” In the Bible, they are mentioned frequently; Abram in Egypt (Gen 12:10), Jacob with Laban (Gen 32:4), all of Israel in Egypt (Gen 47:4), and Naomi in Moab (Ruth 1:1) to name some. The bottom line here is that anyone who turns to us in need, regardless of their situation, will be given the opportunity to take advantage of all that we offer as long as they can live within the very few guidelines that we have established. Race, color, creed, political, religious views, and any kind of disability are not barriers. Instead, they are invitations to join us and make a difference.
We provide living accommodation for those in need who turn to us for help. While it sounds simple, the task is huge because the need is so great. We welcome the person who comes to us understanding that they need to change some things in their lives, even though they may not be sure exactly what that is, and probably do not have a clue as to how to make those changes. The Sojourner Tribe is charged with the vital and life-changing task of welcoming in, evaluating, and providing for all our Sojourners by providing a clean, secure, and supervised, supportive living environment to those who have turned to us broken and devastated by their life’s circumstances. Whether from a family crisis or dysfunction, personal or family members alcohol, drug-abuse, gambling, incarceration, poverty, sexual abuse, or any long list of other possible addictions, we allow the individual to come in, just as they are, and be gently restored to healthy, healing, productive members of the community.
What we are doing is standing in the gap and proclaiming, “We need your discards! Whatever you don’t want, we’ll take. What you call garbage, rejects, unneeded, and junk, we’ll use to help others in need!” We must not forget that the four-hundred men who joined David at the Cave of Adullam were in distress, in debt, and discontented. Each faced difficulty and discouragement (1 Sam 21.10 – 22.2). Christians in many ways are a collection of desperate people who have answered Jesus invitation to them (Mt 11.28). Christ is our Captain, Savior, Leader, and Lord. We come as we are so that we can become what He wants us to be. We intend to reach out to the rest of the folks out there, who, but for God’s grace could just as easily be one of us – or actually was one of us. And we intend, with the love and resources God provides to keep doing it until He takes us home or comes to get us all! Our cry is, “Do you feel like a moral or spiritual discard? Come to Jesus. Loners and losers are welcome at our door. The crucified and risen Christ is the master of redemption for all who turn to Him! Let’s not be negligent and forget that Jesus came to save the lost, the last, and the least!”
Any individual who finds themselves displaced in society, will find that there is a place that they can turn to that exemplifies God’s love and grace…the chemically dependent, the ex-con, the homeless, the runaway, the single parent, or the unwed mom will all find open arms. Those who can demonstrate that they are in such a situation and need housing and food, and who express an honest desire to change their situation are given every possible positive opportunity to do so by becoming a Sojourner.
While not difficult to understand, the number of choices for Sojourners makes showing the structure of the Sojourner Tribe a bit different than with the other Tribes.
Headquarters for the Sojourner Tribe is the Sheepfold. Sheepfold refers to a place where sheep were kept. A Sheepfold was a well built area where flocks were herded at night, where they were protected from wild animals (Num 32.16; 2 Sam 7.8; John 10.16; Jer 23.3; Zeph 2.6; 1 Sam 25.7-11; 2 Sam 13.23; 2 Kings 10.12-14) The Sojourner Minister, Ministers Scribe, Templekeeper and Clerks all work from here, managing and maintaining each of the many residential areas, welcoming in all of the sheep that God sends to us to shepherd for a time, and determining where each of those who turn to us should be housed. All those who are accepted as a Sojourner to participate in the programming that we offer are processed through the Antonia Parlor. Those that for some reason may not qualify to be a Sojourner are referred to other help and assistance programs. Some may participate in our programs but will not live at the facility.
The Sheepfold has the Dayspring Watering Hole. “To break forth”, symbolic for those who are turning to us for help and a fresh start. The Dayspring Watering Hole is a Servery for use by Sojourner Tribe staff, but more importantly, any Sojourner candidates who are being interviewed.
The Bond Master the translation of several Hebrew and Greek words meaning “obligation,” “dependence,” or “restraint.” Used literally to speak of the bonds of prisoners or slaves (Jud 15:14; 1 Kings 14:10; Ps 107:14; 116:16; Lk 8:29; Phlmn 13). The Bond Master assists Antonia Parlor staff in the evaluation process and determines where each Sojourner will start the new journey in their life. All Sojourners desiring to stay at our facilities agree to a complete needs assessment and to then take the necessary training instruction and programming offered here to meet those needs. Once all assessments are completed, they will be enrolled in the proper schooling and programming on a half-time basis. Those who are able agree to work part-time in a barter-like arrangement. The goal is to help free them from the bondage of lack of learning and prepare them to go out in peace to a successful career in the world. This initial evaluation is not a long procedure and usually takes a day or two.
Once the Bond Master has determined which of our living centers the Sojourner will reside at, the Captain of the Guides escorts the Sojourner to their temporary home and introduces them to their Sojourner Guide. Supervised by the Captain of the Guides, each Sojourner Guide supervises and manages a specific Sojourner living unit. The Sojourner Guide is responsible for leading a group of Sojourners to a particular residential unit. The Guide not only helps them get around but also counsels and directs them on any number of activities and choices that they will make while staying with us. The Guide handles general supervision and discipline for that specific unit. The Guide is the person the Sojourner can turn to with questions regarding our policies and procedures, geographic directions, and spiritual direction. The Guides also assist Sojourners in dealing with and resolving problems and needs.
After the Sojourner is assigned to their residence at the facility, the Bond Master continues the assessment process and “Pigeonholes” or classifies the Sojourner based on evaluation, need, and characteristics, so that each of the Sojourners knows and agrees to their programming needs.
The Sojourner living units are really the heart of what we are doing. Twenty-four hour per day guidance and supervision is provided. Meals are provided, as are basic clothing, hygiene, and medical needs. Each living unit is specifically designed and equipped to meet the needs of that Sojourner group. Nurturing in a family-like setting is tantamount to success and is something that will be very new to most Sojourners. While these are temporary living arrangements, they are designed to provide all the fundamentals for stress-free, successful choices that can lead to living an independent, God-focused, healthy lifestyle, while coping in a rapidly declining world. Just as we provide adequate training and experience to individuals so that they can support themselves in the world, the goal on each of the living units is to create, through demonstration, more independence, and decision-making opportunities …Teach a man to fish and he will be able to feed himself for a lifetime.
Sojourners with special needs will go into one of the following appropriate living areas:
The Cave of Adullam David used the Cave of Adullam for refuge (1 Sam 22:1), as did five Canaanite kings at Makkehah (Josh 10:16). It is a combined group home and mental health center for our Castaways which is a translation of Greek referring to battle-testing of soldiers, to make sure they are genuine. Paul hoped the Corinthians would recognize that he had not failed the test and was not a reprobate. He prayed the Corinthians would not do wrong, but prove himself qualified, but also that the Corinthians would do what was right even if Paul proved to be unqualified. Our Castaways, who, due to mental incapacities through accidents or perhaps birth, have something in their life that prohibits them from properly looking after themselves. Many are outcasts, discarded, rejected disowned, abandoned, and forsaken of today’s busy secular world find a peaceful place to live and to be encouraged to grow and live their lives to the fullest potential. Years ago, the state closed most of the mental health centers and instead expanded their prisons. The mental health center’s that are open are filled with the alcoholics, and drug abusers being sobered up but not treated, instead of the truly mentally challenged. Society for the most part has completely turned its back on a segment of what is becoming a disposable people. There is something wrong with that picture. The Cave of Adullam is dedicated to reaching out to our Castaways and helping them to feel that instead of being someone who is unclaimed, they instead have been found and are wanted not just by us, but by our Lord and Savior.
When Elijah and Jonah lapsed into nervous exhaustion, God’s method of dealing with them is outlined in 1 Kings 19 and the book of Jonah. The Bible looks at illness and sickness throughout. If God’s Word can deal with it, then we should at least be trying! God had David, and many others seek refuge in a cave. When one looks at the science of speleology (which is the study and exploration of caves), one finds that there are three types of cave dwellers, which, without too much of a stretch of the imagination can be related to mental prognosis:
Trogloxenes (Troglos = cave, xenos = guest) – lives above the ground, but uses the cave for protection from predators or the weather. At the Cave of Adullam, these are the folks who need to withdraw from society for a time – they need protection from themselves, or others. They need to come in and get away from it all for a time.
Troglophiles (Troglos = cave, philes = love) – prefers moist, dark places. They can live in the cave but can also live outside as well. At the Cave of Adullam, these are the folks who have allowed the demons to have their way with them. They have retreated into the dark places. Recovery takes a long, slow, loving process, but with it, eventually these folks will emerge back into society radiating the love of Christ from head to foot.
Troglobites (Troglos = cave, bios = life) – true cave dwellers. They are born, live, and die in total darkness. At the Cave of Adullam, these are the folks that for whatever reason, God has allowed to retreat into a permanent funk. They may never be able to return to society and function there, but God is still their God, and they still need loving care!
The Cave of Adullam is designed to provide the care necessary, especially the extra security that is sometimes needed, but without looking and feeling like an institutionalized setting. The Castaways are all entitled to better. Attendants (1 Kings 19.21; Ex 24.13; 33.11) look after the Castaways and their needs. Medical exams and care are provided by Beth Rapha, with a Nurse always available. Bible Counselors, and Therapists are available to work with and reach out to each Castaway. The Cave is a delightful, relaxing space, painted in cheerful colors with lots of comfortable places to rest and recover abound. The Royal Archives and Peniel provide outlets for reading and keeping in shape. For those who care to eat in a dining room, David’s Grotto (a grotto is a cave, or cave like excavation or structure – in keeping with the theme of Adullam’s Cave.) provides the opportunity to share a tasty meal while socializing with others.
The Cherith Pavilion (khee' rihth) means “a dwelling for hiding.” Elijah pronounced God’s judgment in the form of a two-year drought and then found God’s protection at the Cherith, where he had water to drink (1 Kings 17:3). In architecture a pavilion usually refers to a free-standing structure sited a short distance from a main residence, whose architecture makes it an object of pleasure. The Pavilion houses our Pippins, which is a term for one who is generally admired. Though foreigners, they were under the protection of Israel and God (Ex 20.10; 22.21; 23.9, 11). The Pippins are people who feel like aliens in every city and town throughout this country. They are seeking a better, safer, more productive life. We may have all kinds of different names for these people – the battered housewife, the alcoholic or chemically addicted tired of living in a ditch, the runaway, the divorcee who has nowhere to turn, or the family out on the streets because their dream has turned into a nightmare. They are individuals who need temporary, safe shelter to allow them to catch their breath from a crisis situation. So, we have chosen to designate the people who come into Cherith Pavilion as Pippins, people who we admire for having the guts to try out something new, and perhaps get themselves started on a completely different journey.
To assure confidentiality, Cherith Pavilion does not reveal its purpose as openly as with other Sojourners. The Pavilion provides a very confidential, safe, and secure place for those who have been assessed to have need of temporary shelter due to a bad situation. Biblical Counselors in the Pavilion are committed to protecting, serving, empowering, and encouraging the Pippin who has turned to us for help in restoring a broken life by assisting the Pippin in finding safe alternatives and choices in their lives. The goal of the Biblical Counselor is to help the Pippin seek help so that they can safely return home or start a new life in the community. In some cases, Pippins may choose to participate as a Seeker, or to participate in other classes and programs that we offer. The Raven’s Eatery named after the brook where Elijah hid and was fed by Ravens during a famine in 1 Kings 17.3-5. When the Lord had Elijah hide at Cherith He sent Ravens to feed him during the famine in 1 Kings 17.3-5. The Eatery is the Servery where all the Pippins fellowship and share meals.
Jehovah Jireh Bethshean (Jeh hoh' vuh-ji rehh) means, “Yahweh will provide” (Gen 22:14). It is the name Abraham gave to the place where the Lord provided a sacrifice in place of Isaac. (Behth-shee' uhn) means “house of quiet.” We put this together to mean that God will provide a house of rest, food and shelter for man and beast. There’s always room in this Inn! This is a no-questions asked place to clean-up, sleep and to get a meal for the Wayfarer (means “one who walks the roads” from Judges 19:17; 2 Sam 12:4; Isa 33:8; 35:8; the NIV uses “traveler.”) Throughout our city there are many men, woman, and teens who walk the roads living from meal to meal, and simply need a spot to call home for a night or two. Assistance is readily available should it be requested, particularly about referrals to our many programs and services, but it is not forced on the Wayfarers who turn to us. Nutritious food is always available at the Manna House. Manna is an edible substance that God provided for the Israelites during their Exodus in the desert. We want our special guests to know about the true Bread of Life. Jehovah Jireh Bethshean also prepares and plans keeping supplies in place, should the need for housing larger numbers of people, as the result of a cataclysmic emergency in the city or surrounding area arise.
Lambs of God Chasah Lambs (and young rams) form an important part of almost every sacrifice in the OT (Leviticus 4:32; Numbers 6:14). Lamb of God is a term used typically of Christ as the Sin-bearer of the world (John 1:29, 36; cf. Acts 8:32; 1 Peter 1:19). In these passages Christ is likened to a sacrificial lamb on account of His death, innocently and patiently endured to expiate sin.
(khaw-saw') is to seek refuge, or shelter. The Lamb of God Chasah is a critical care facility for victims who have been rescued from the human trafficking industry. Statistics for 2021 are alarming.
Around 7,500 human traffickers were convicted around the globe in 2018.
There are around 4.8 million victims of sex trafficking worldwide.
With 14 million victims, India is the global leader in human trafficking.
Forced marriages belong to modern slavery and sexual exploitation, as per the International Labor Office.
About 30% of trafficking victims around the globe are children.
Each year, there are an estimated 199,000 incidents of children’s sexual exploitation in the US, the stats on sex trafficking confirm.
Overall, there were 17,880 human trafficking prosecutions in the US in 2017.
Around 1,000 potential sex trafficking victims were recruited online in the period between 2015 and 2018.
One in 6 child runaways is likely a victim of child sex trafficking.
Texas led the US based on the number of human trafficking offenses committed in 2018.
When victims are able to be rescued from their situations, they have endured multiple violations, including sexual abuse, and are likely to be experiencing trauma. Trauma is expressed differently by each individual ranging from intense expressions of feelings of anger or fear to a lack of emotion or flat effect. There are very few facilities in this country that are equipped to handle human trafficking victims. We have committed to listening and to creating space where these very special people can feel safe, heal, and start the road to recovery. The residents at Lambs of God Chasah are referred to as Amno which means “Sheep of God.”
Sheep are mentioned about five hundred times in the Bible. The interest of the sheep to Christians culminates in the fact that Christ is the atoning, illuminating, life-giving, reigning Lamb of God. Each Chasah is designed similarly to a house, with individual bedrooms for each of the Amno, rooms for counseling and group meetings, living space, and the Tabepna Dining Room. A tabepna is a small restaurant serving cuisine. The entire Chasah is designed to help the Amno recover at their own pace from what they have been through.
Naomi’s Beth Pelet (nā´ṓ-mı̄) was the wife of Elimelech and mother-in-law of Ruth (Ruth 1:2 through 4:17). She went with her husband to the land of Moab, and after his death returned to Bethlehem. She advised Ruth in her dealings with Boaz, wisely advised Ruth regarding marriage nursed their child as well as taking care of Ruth’s child. (beth-pē´let) is the “house of deliverance.” Naomi’s provides for expecting moms who we refer to as Goneus, which is Greek for parent, Ex 20:12; Lev 19:3; Dt 5:16; Eph 6:1, 4; Col 3:20, 21; 2 Cor 12:14. Naomi’s is a place where women who are pregnant can seek and receive wise counsel as mothers and in their personal lifelong walk. Some may have no family support but have decided not to seek an abortion as an alternative to their pregnancy crisis. Some may have a young child yet have no reliable source of income or support from the child’s father. Pre-natal and nursery care are provided right along with all the other services offered by Naomi’s. The difference between Naomi’s and our other Sojourner units is that most of those services (medical care, school, training) occur right at Naomi’s.
Naomi’s Beth Pelet is staffed with a full-time Midwife who works with and assists the Sojourner Guide. There is a Royal Archives, and a Peniel specially equipped for the Goneus who have just given birth to be able to stay in shape, as well as the incredibly special Bubbles Room, where our Goneus can relax and pamper themselves. There is also a Laundry and Utility Room available. Beth Rapha has both a Medical Room and the Birthing Room attached to Naomi’s. A specially equipped Nursery holds the precious newborns (and any other infant children) when the Goneus are not able, or are participating in classes, or other programs. There is the Obed Bistro (ō´bed) means “worshipper” and was the son of Boaz and Ruth and grandfather of David (Ruth 4:17, 21, 22; 1 Ch 2:12; Mt 1:5; Lk 3:32). The Bistro is the Servery and provides the opportunity to fix snacks as well. Naomi’s is also equipped with a Pre-School Playroom for those Goneus who may have another child.
Farmer’s Bunkhouse Accommodation for Pilgrims and Saints who are working off-site at one of our farm locations. As the name implies, this is a big bunkhouse meant to be temporary living for those working at the site. Bunk beds, showers, bath are all provided, as well as the Harvest Field Café where incredible meals are provided for the workers.
Exodus Center Without question, the largest percentage of the Sojourners going through our programs will be in the Exodus Center – symbolic of the Israelites leaving slavery behind for the promised land, told in the books of Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. While at the Exodus Center the Sojourner follows a progressive journey just like the Israelite experienced that involves the ability to be able to move to a total of three different levels, based on growth and achievement while staying in the Center. Our hope and prayer is that it does not take the Sojourner forty years, however! All Sojourners coming into the Exodus Center start out at the same level: Seekers. The Bible definition we are focusing on for Seekers is “to seek carefully.” In Jeremiah 29:13 we read, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all of your heart’.” All those who come in as Seekers are looking for a new direction in their lives, searching for and trying to obtain something different in their lives. How long they stay and how far they progress is an individual thing. It is not easy to change direction and try to find a different way of dealing with a situation that is painful, stressful, hurtful, etc. The Seeker has decided to try, but isn’t sure, and most likely is not at all comfortable with what they are attempting. They are distrustful, especially if they have tried some of the other opportunities that are out in the world today. Solutions without Jesus Christ in the center are never completely successful. So, the first living arrangement and step in the process is to sincerely look for a new way, a way out of the current messes, or perhaps a way to break a destructive lifestyle that makes continuing to live as they have been a poor choice. Being a Seeker is the first step.
Seekers are housed in housing units that are called a Refuge, which means protection or shelter from danger or hardship. There are six Cities of Refuge listed in Numbers 35 and Joshua 20:7-9. Each Refuge is named for one of those cities: Kedesh, Shechem, Hebron, Golan, Ramoth-Gilead, and Bezer. While in a Refuge, access to the rest of the facility is limited until trust and a comfortable understanding of how we operate is developed. Each Refuge is set up with bunkhouse style living; a twin bunk bed, desk, cabinet, and storage trunk for every two Seekers. They share a common bathroom with showers, utility/maintenance area, and laundry facilities. Tables and comfortable chairs form a living area with media access. The Refuge share a Royal Archives, Isthmian Room, and Peniel, with Reuel’s Pantry (Roo' ehl) means, “friend of God.” There are different Reuel’s in the Bible. We focus on the priest of Midian and a herdsman, who gave a hospitable reception to Moses when he fled from Egypt (Ex 2:18). The Pantry has access to hot and cold water, ice, and microwaves for preparing snacks. Meals are served there.
Once the Sojourner has arrived at the Refuge and been given a little time to catch their breath, the Sojourner Guide then conducts a full orientation to the facilities. Periodically during the time that the Sojourner is living here, the Guide is responsible for preparing an evaluation and reviews of each Sojourner on their living unit, based on personal observation and interviewing. After the orientation has been completed and appropriate testing and evaluations have taken place, the Assignment Procurator works with the Apollos Academy Counselor, and the Sojourner Guide to schedule the Sojourner for program needs, schooling, and a job. The Assignment Procurator (Procurator is a word that translates “governor” in KJV. is responsible for evaluating, tracking, and assigning Sojourners to job positions. Because no two individuals have the exact same needs, Sojourners don’t have the same schedules or division of time. This involves a great deal of organization to be able to coordinate school and program assignments from the Apollos Academy Counselor and matching any past experience with career goals to allow each unique Sojourner the chance to grow, gain personal insight and experience that will be beneficial to them. The Assignment Procurator will have input along with the Apollos Academy Counselor in assisting the Sojourner Guide to prepare regular evaluations.
Through the demonstration of Christian basics, the love of Jesus, and a constant atmosphere of support that is exemplified in each Refuge, Seekers are encouraged to come to know and to choose to follow the Lord as they see and experience the Gospel message in action. Making choices will lead a Seeker to move to their next level, either as a Pilgrim or a Saint, and perhaps even move to being a Disciple some day in their journey.
The next level at the Exodus Center are the Pilgrims. A pilgrimage is a journey, especially a religious trek to a site at which God has revealed Himself in the past. Many Bible translations use pilgrimage in a figurative sense for a life journey (Gen 47:9 KJV, only; Ps 119:54).). Someone who is on a pilgrimage is considered a pilgrim. In 1 Peter 2.11 we read, “Dear friends, you are pilgrims, foreigners, and strangers on this earth. So I beg you not to surrender to those desires that fight against you.” Our Pilgrims are at a critical level. They are the Sojourners who feel like wanderers in a desert. After spending time in a Refuge, they are still feeling a little lost and out of touch with everything around them. They are struggling with decisions and are not sure if they are on the right path. They are easily identified because of their struggles and may even be hostile at times towards Scriptural teaching and many of the methods used at the facilities. It is essential to provide even more love and attention to these Sojourners. The symbolism from the names used at this level is especially meaningful and must not be lost by all staff who are dealing with our very precious Pilgrims. They are struggling with a decision to follow Jesus but show a desire to continue to learn and change and are moved to the Pilgrim level where they can continue to participate and learn while experiencing God’s love, even though they don’t recognize or accept it. The Pilgrim is sincerely looking for a new way: a way out of their current messes, or perhaps a way to return home to family and not get back into a destructive lifestyle. They vacillate between decisions. Some may choose to never move beyond this level.
All Pilgrims reside in a Beth Arabah (Behth-ar' uh bah) is a place that means, “house of the desert,” Sojourners in a strange place. As the Bible relates in the book of Exodus, wilderness areas were found in the desert areas. The major rivers that flowed through these areas all had many nameless streams that flowed at various times of the year into the wilderness areas: streams in the desert – a place of shelter for those struggling in a vast, empty place, Isaiah 32.2; Mt 14.13; Heb 11.38. This is very symbolic of the fact that even though our Pilgrim’s may be wandering, there is still the promise of hope. Beth is the most general word for “house” (Genesis 24:32; 33:17; Judges 18:31; 1 Samuel 1:7). From this general use the transition was natural to a house in the sense of a “family.”
Each Beth Arabah is named for a wilderness area found in the Bible. Each room has two occupants, with beds, desks and storage closets for each person. Pilgrims in each Beth Arabah share a common bathroom, shower area, utility/maintenance area, and laundry facilities. Tables, chairs, and comfortable surroundings form a living area with a Rahab’s Oasis as the Servery. (Ray' hab) was a harlot in Jericho who hid two Hebrew spies Joshua sent there to determine the strength of the city (Josh 2:1). When the king of Jericho learned of the spies’ presence, he sent men to arrest them. Rahab outsmarted the king and hid the men on her roof, sending the arresting officers on a false chase toward the Jordan River. In return for her help Joshua spared her and her clan when the Hebrews destroyed Jericho (Josh 6:17-25). Hebrews 11:31 lists Rahab among the heroes of faith. An oasis is a fertile area in a desert, especially with water, where travelers could pause for refreshment. Each Rahab’s Oasis provides access to hot and cold water, ice, microwaves, refrigeration, and vending machines as well as a prep area for snacks and fixing light meals. A Peniel for exercise, the Isthmian Room for games and a Royal Archives for reading are all available for each Beth Arabah along with meeting rooms and conference room space. Access to the rest of the facility is available but controlled.
For forty years, the children of Israel were stubbornly rebellious and God kept them in the wilderness of the Sinai Desert, until Joshua took the next generation into the Holy Land. For forty years, the children of Israel sojourned through the desert areas during the Exodus. Each Beth Arabah is named for one of those areas: Nile delta, Watiya Pass, Wadi Feiran, Mount Sinai, Plain of Rahab, Gulf of Aqaba, Kadesh-barnea, Arad, Wadi Mujib, Dibon-gad, Mount Nebo, and the Jordan Valley.
Those Seekers who realize that they can’t do it on their own, and who have chosen Jesus Christ through faith alone as their personal Lord and Savior become one of His Saints and move to that level. This allows them the opportunity to gain a deeper sense of God’s will and plan for their life in an atmosphere where they can be encouraged and challenged in their new life of sanctification and healing with the Lord. In some cases (God willing, many) Sojourners will pass from being Seeker’s directly to being Saint’s.
Saints are Holy people, a title for all God’s people, but applied in some contexts to a small group seen as the most dedicated ones. Holiness is more than a one-time separating and uniting activity. It is a way of life. Saints are people who try to live holy lives (Dan 7:18-28). Saints not only name Jesus as Lord, but they are faithful and true witnesses for Jesus. To all…who are loved by God and called to be Saints…” NLT… “You are among those who have been called to belong to Jesus Christ, dear friends…God loves you dearly, and He has called you to be His very own people.” Our Saints reside at an Inn which literally means a “night resting-place,” Each Inn has double rooms with every Saint having a bed with storage drawers underneath, an individual study center, dresser with mirror, closet space, and bulletin board. Saints share a common bathroom with showers, utility/maintenance area, and laundry facilities. Furniture, tables, and media access are provided in comfortable living areas. A Royal Archives, Isthmian Room, and Peniel are all available. There is a study/classroom and an office/meeting room available for each Inn to use. Saints have easy access to the rest of the facility using their pass cards.
Each Inn has a Hannah’s Dinette (Han' nuh) means “grace.” One of the wives of Elkanah and the mother of Samuel (1 Sam 1:2), she had been barren for many years. She vowed to the Lord that if she should give birth to a son, she would dedicate the child to God (1 Sam 1:11). She fulfilled her vow by bringing her son Samuel to the sanctuary at Shiloh, where he served the Lord under the direction of Eli. A dinette is a nook or small room for informal meals. Hannah’s DInette provides access to hot and cold water, ice, microwaves, refrigerator/freezer space, a variety of cooking appliances (auto fry, crock-pot, popcorn popper, rice cooker, toaster), and vending machines with an area for preparing light meals and snacks.
Each Inn is named for a country or town represented at Pentecost: Arabia, Asia, Cyrene, Egypt, Elam, Judea, Libya, Media, Mesopotamia, Pamphylia, Parthia, Phrygia, Pontus, and Rome.
When a Saint (and in some cases a Pilgrim) has completed all the training and programming available to them, most will have completed their time at our facilities. The Sojourner will move on, aided fully by the Sojourners Tribe and all the resources that we have, either to their former neighborhoods and family, or to new neighborhoods close to where they will be working. There is, however, a final level for the Saint who has done extremely well participating in all that we have offered, and who expresses a desire to serve the Lord on a full-time basis.
A Disciple is a Sojourner who has passed through our levels at the Exodus Center and has decided to remain and continue in our advanced training programs. A Disciple is “a learner,” “a scholar.” The word is found in the Bible only in the Gospel and Acts, and always means the pupil of someone, Mt 10:24; Lk 6:40. In all cases it implies that the person not only accepts the views of the teacher, but that he is also in practice an adherent. It is the only name for Christ’s followers in the Gospel. We read in John 8:31,” Jesus said to the people who believed in him, ‘You are truly my disciples if you keep obeying my teachings. Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.” A Sojourner moves into the position of Disciple only after applying and being recommended by the Sojourner Guide, at least one staff member, one of the Minister’s and/or the Chief Shepherd. Advanced training opportunities are provided through both directed study and extensive training by practical application to prepare the Disciple to head into the world as a light, shining with the love of Christ for others.
Disciples reside in a Dwelling Place which is a “residence, a place to live as an inhabitant, somewhere to reside.” Each Dwelling Place is a studio-type apartment with bathroom furnished for two Disciples. The Disciples share a utility/maintenance area and laundry facilities as well as a Royal Archives, Isthmian Room, Peniel, and study and meeting space. The Sea of Galilee Grill is set up so that any number of Disciples can share cooking needs, if desired. Each Dwelling Place is named for either one of the seven original deacons from Acts 6:5, or one of the other disciples of the first church mentioned in the New Testament: Artemas, Barsabbas, Demas, Eubulus, Fortunatus, Nicanor, Nicholas, Parmenas, Philip, Procorus, Pudens, Rufus, Sosipater, Stephen, Timon, and Tychicus.
A quiet area has been established just for the Disciples known as the Pentecost Atrium. On the day of Pentecost in Acts 1, the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples as “a power from on high.” God the Holy Spirit proved on Pentecost His personal existence, and the intellects, the hearts, the lives of the apostles were on that day miraculously changed. On that day they were fitted for the arduous work that lay before them. Pentecost completely changed the apostles and enabled them to become witnesses of the resurrection of Christ as the fundamental fact in historic Christianity, and to extend the church according to Christ’s commandment. The Atrium is a very special place where the Disciple can go to just get away, to study, relax and reflect.
Every Disciple is tutored and supervised by the Schoolmaster who exercises careful supervision over the Disciples, educating them, forming their manners, etc. Mosaic Law likened a “schoolmaster to being us unto Christ” (Gal 3:24 KJV). The Disciples meet daily in the Mt Moriah Room “God Provides.” It is the Hebrew name given to a mountainous region in the Book of Genesis and is the location of the sacrifice of Isaac. It serves to teach and send the Disciples out to serve in key support positions throughout the facilities – not as a “gopher” but as an opportunity for practical, supervised, hands-on experience that will allow the Disciple to determine if a commitment to full-time, life-long ministry work is truly their hearts desire. In many ways the Disciple is the equivalent of what many call an “Intern” – an advanced student who is undergoing supervised, practical training.
The Praetorium (Prih tawr' ih um) is the barracks where Jesus was taken and mocked by the soldiers before His crucifixion (Mk 15:16). It was most likely the official residence of the Roman governor. Herod’s Praetorium in Caesarea (Acts 23:35 NASB, RSV) served as the residence of the Roman governor Felix. The Bible variously refers to the Praetorium as the "common hall," the "governor's house," the "judgment hall," "Pilate's house," and the "palace." In the Gospels Herod's Palace. Our royal palace is actually a 4-winged complex with 1-, 2-, 3-, and 4-bedroom apartments/townhouses that connect to an atrium that features lots of live greenery, a swimming pool and rec/fitness areas where Never-Ending Grace Corporation workers and staff can live, close to our facilities.
Olive Branch Lodge Overseen by the Sojourner Tribe and managed by a Governor who is assisted by an Innkeeper, the Lodge is a multiple story, multiple room, eco-friendly, secure, impeccably clean hotel that comes with everything a guest would want, including a state-of-the-art fitness room, Leaves & Beans Boutique (tea and coffee), and the gorgeous Mount of Olives Atrium with a swimming pool and real grass putting green. Each guest’s stay starts with both reservations and check in (as well as checkout) available from their phone or other mobile device; free, easy access parking; free WI-FI access, (not just in their room but throughout the facility). Each member of the staff from the Innkeeper on down is always available to point guests in the right direction or provide them with info on all our facilities, shops, restaurants, church services and happenings in the local area.
Every room comes complete with mattress selection, availability of premium bedding and pillow choices, luxurious towels, and daily housekeeping. In addition, guests will find they have a satellite-connected TV and music system, room-sized fridge with icemaker, coffee brewer and tea maker, microwave, worktable/desk with chairs and WI-FI access, as well as adjustable lighting, a phone with instant access to the front desk and the rest of the facility, a 3-D shower with sprays plus a jet hand shower head, complete with a choice of our variety of eco-friendly shampoos and conditioners. There is a Peniel fitness room, as well as En-Gannim Nooks throughout the building. The White as Snow Laundry Room (Isaiah 1:18) is always available for our guest’s convenience.
Room choices include the Queen of Sheba Quarters (Queen sized beds, 1 Kings 10:4-5); Thomas Didymus Lodging (Double-double rooms John 11:16; 20:24; 21:2 Greek word meaning twin, Thomas also means twin in Aramaic); Lydia’s Digs (Single Rooms, leadership of Lydia who began the church at Philippi); and Palace Suites.
The Mt Ararat Center at the Olive Branch Lodge is available for receptions, seminars, or other special events. Mt Ararat in Genesis 8:4; Jeremiah 51:27 applies to the country between the Tigris and the Caucasus Mountains, came to apply to the mountain range there. The highest of these mountains, on the Russian border in eastern Turkey, is usually seized on as the place where Noah’s ark landed because it is the highest mountain (16,946 feet) in the chain and in the entire Near East. Attached to the Mt Ararat Center is the Dove’s Nest Clubhouse after the doves sent by Noah to bring back the olive branch proving the water has subsided. The Clubhouse provides food service for the Center, as well as a place for guests to enjoy a meal or snack…morning, noon, and late into the evening. Every morning the Clubhouse features a breakfast bar for all the Olive Branch guests to enjoy. One of the unique features of the Clubhouse is that they adjust their hours to accommodate guests coming from or going to events at not just the Center, but the many other events at the facilities.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednago’s Haven Daniel 1, three of Daniel’s friends were taken from Jerusalem. King Nebuchadnezzar built an idol and demanded that everyone worship his creation. These young men refused to worship the idol. They were thrown into a fiery furnace for their refusal. But when they came out of the furnace unharmed, the king declared that they should be allowed to worship their god in any way they pleased. No one should put limitations on these three young men (Dan 3:28).
We need to broaden our idea of what a missionary is and see these three in a different light. These young men carried the message of God which made a spiritual impact in their lives and in the lives of others. A haven is a quiet or secluded place in which one can rest and relax: a place of seclusion for the purpose of prayer and meditation. We provide tranquil short-term living places for missionaries coming from the heat of the missionary fields on furlough.
Actor’s Attic Actor literally means "one who interprets”; an actor, then, is one who interprets a dramatic character; a person portraying a character in a dramatic or comic production be it in film, television, theatre, or radio. An attic is a space found directly below the pitched roof of a house or other building. This Attic provides a place to stay for the actors from out of town who are performing in one of the productions at the Beulah Land Theater or other on-site productions. The Attic provides individual bedrooms, large communal showers, a comfortable communal living area where the Actors can relax between performances, as well as a Royal Archives and Peniel. The actors can prepare meals and snacks in the Hierapolis Concessions. (hē-ẽr-ap´ō̇-lis) means “sacred city” and as the name implies, Hierapolis was a holy city. Though a stronghold of Satan, Hierapolis early became a Christian city, for, according to Col 4:13, the only place where it is mentioned in the NT, a church was founded there through the influence of Paul while he was at Ephesus. One may still trace the city walls, the temple, several churches, the triumphal arch, the gymnasium and baths, and the most perfect theater in Asia Minor.
Lishkah Camp The Sojourner Tribe provides lodging accommodations for those coming from out of the area as guests to visit either Sojourners, or the facility in general. Lishkah is a Hebrew word meaning “guest chamber” and occurs forty-seven times in the OT and is usually translated “hall” in the NIV and “chamber” in the KJV. It is used frequently for a guest chamber or stopping place for travelers (Sam 1.2; 2 King 19.35; Ex 14.20). Camp, or encampment was a group of tenets intended for traveling or for temporary residence as in case of war – contrasted with villages, towns, or cities that are composed of houses and other more or less permanent buildings. The Hebrew word for camp occurs over two-hundred times. In Genesis 32:1-2, when the angels of God met Jacob, Jacob exclaimed, “This is the camp of God!”
Like any hospitality venue, it is essential that everything is done to make every visit a pleasant experience for everyone involved. A special Camp Guide is provided with responsibility for giving guided tours and providing presentations about our facilities and programs that have been prepared by GCCC. In addition to a variety of quality rooms and suites, the Camp has a laundry and utility room, a Royal Archives, and the Corinthian Cookery. Various arts were cultivated and the Corinthians, even in the earliest times, were famous for their cleverness, inventiveness, and artistic sense. Its monuments and public buildings and art treasures are described in detail by Pausanias. In the Cookery, guests of the Lishkah Camp can prepare snacks and light meals. Guests are encouraged to move around the facility, with the assistance of the Camp Guide, and to have their meals with the Sojourners in Noah’s Galley.
Operated separately but attached to the Lishkah Camp is Gaius’ Tent (Gay' iuhs) which means “I am glad, rejoice.” Gaius was Paul the apostle’s host in Corinth (Rom 16:23), known for his hospitality. According to 1 Corinthians 1:14, he was one of the individuals in Corinth whom Paul personally had baptized. The Governor of the Tent works with Gideon’s Army and handles all approval and clearances for guests visiting Sojourners and is responsible for providing guests with a warm and gracious reception and visiting area. While in the Gaius’ Tent, guests visit with their Sojourner either individually or in the group area. Guests or Sojourners can purchase food from Zacchaeus’s Cantina. (Zak kee' uhs) means, “innocent.” But Zacchaeus was a corrupt Publican (tax collector) in first-century Jericho (Mt 18:17; Lk 3:12-13; 19:2-9). Zacchaeus was a rich chief among the Publicans (Mt 18:17; Lk 3:12-13). Out of curiosity he went to hear Jesus. Because of his short stature he had to climb a tree to catch a glimpse of the Lord. To his surprise Jesus called him by name to come down and went home with Zacchaeus. There the official believed and was converted. As a result of his newfound faith, he restored with interest the money he had taken illegally. A cantina is a type of bar, similar in etymology to "canteen.”
To make Sojourner visits more fun, we pay tribute to Zacchaeus by naming the eating area in Gaius Tent for him – a reminder to all that no matter the past, anyone who seeks Jesus can be restored.