“But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. 1 Peter 2:9″
“And the cooking pots in the LORD’s house will be like the bowls before the altar.”
It can seem absurd to human, and often prideful minds, to let an invisible God give them direction. And the pride can really be offended when the direction comes through another human being. However, God still speaks through praying people, and the message we ignore may actually come from the Light of the World. Has God ever used someone else’s foolish obedience to confound your wisdom? He’s done it to me. This is exactly what happened when an intercessor in Williamsburg, Virginia, approached me and said:
Will, I am a “lighthouse intercessor.” God has led me to pray for people called to impact the nation with prayer and revival. He uses the symbolism of lighthouses in bringing them to my mind. The Lord told me you’re my next one to pray for and that you’re like the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. This lighthouse has black and white spiraling stripes on it. I believe you’ll be used like this lighthouse to unite black, white and all races to be a bright light, turning America in the right direction.”
I was polite to her, but at first I honestly didn’t take it to heart. Shortly after this happened, I began waking up at 1:11 A.M. God often speaks to me through unusual events like this, so I searched my Bible, wondering if a 1-1-1 Scripture would stand out. But no particular 1-1-1 passage, such as Psalm 111 or Colossians 1:11, made a connection with me. Finally, one morning after another 1:11 A.M. wake-up call from the Lord, I prayed, and decided to pick up a book on lighthouses, believing that God was going to speak to me through it.
Called to Be a Lighthouse
Someone had given me a new book on American lighthouses. After peeling off the wrapping, it fell open to page 111 and an article titled “African-American Keepers!”1
This chapter dealt with African Americans in our nation’s history who had run lighthouses. I thought incredulously, “Lord, are you waking me up at 1:11 A.M. to direct my attention to page 111 in a book?” He was. Page 111 explained that although it was illegal for him to do so, an African-American slave secretly ran the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, the same lighthouse that the lighthouse intercessor said I represented! Michelle and I were a bit undone and, yes, I was again humbled. God was shining His light on those who had moved His heart in the past, and through them He was leading us down an unusual path.
But God wasn’t finished confirming this unique picture of my calling. A few weeks later, I went to a preservice prayer time at an African-American congregation. The elders gathered at the front, knelt down and began to sing very slowly, “Let the Light of the Lighthouse Shine on Me!” When they were finished, I asked about this song, and I was told that it’s an old Negro slave spiritual that was used by Harriet Tubman and others as a code song during slavery. When “Lighthouse” was sung, it alerted slaves working that day to a rescue that night by Tubman and others working on the Underground Railroad. In the dark of night, a flashing light, created by a mirror reflecting the light of the moon, would lead runaway slaves. Black and white Christians worked together on the Underground Railroad and set many captives free. They were the original unified, black and white lighthouse intercessors.
First Peter 2:9, a Scripture we referenced earlier, speaks of our unity and priestly function of prayer as believers. The last portion of this Scripture, along with saying we’re a chosen race of priests, says, we “proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called [us] out of darkness into His marvelous light” (emphasis added). The word “light” is phos, which means, “to shine or make manifest, especially by rays.” As a unified royal priesthood, we live in the light; and as intercessors we pierce the darkness of our day by manifesting God’s light through intercession. Sounds like a spiritual version of the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, doesn’t it?
What happened to me is really about all of us. Like the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, the Lord is calling blacks, whites and people of all races to unite in prayer to turn our nation in the right direction. A new lighthouse is being erected that will guide those bound by the enemy, moving them “out of darkness into His marvelous light.”
The Generations Connected
Generational curses are real, but generational blessings are also powerful and available to affect future generations. In this chapter I want to connect with the hidden legacy of prayer and intercession from Christian slaves and abolitionists. You’ll see their heart passions and sacrifice. Through this, you’ll gain a better understanding of how intercession is not only about prayer but also about being a mediator who is actively involved in releasing the will of Heaven on Earth. This is exactly what Christian “lighthouses” did generations ago during the time of slavery. Let’s look at how brotherly love, prayer and sacrifice has shaped this nation.
As we mentioned before, my ancestor’s kettle was used by the Lord as a reminder of the prayer bowls in heaven. God gave Zechariah 14:20 to us. Itsays, “The cooking pots in the LORD’S house will be like the bowls before the altar”(emphasis added). This old kettle in my family caught the muffled prayers of slaves in the same way that bowls in Heaven catch the incense of our prayers (see Rev. 5:8).
More Cast-Iron Kettles
During my research, I made a most remarkable discovery. Praying under a kettle wasn’t isolated to just my family. According to Albert J. Raboteau, professor of religion at Princeton University, slaves often used kettles to conceal their prayer meetings:
“The most common device for preserving secrecy was an iron pot usually placed in the middle of the cabin floor or at the doorstep, then slightly propped up to hold the sound of the praying and singing from escaping. A variation was to pray or sing softly “with heads together around” the “kettle to deaden the sound.”2
This discovery led me to a study of slave narratives from across the country. I learned that like my ancestors a remnant of Christian slaves on plantations had also used kettles and other containers to conceal their prayer meetings. Laura Thornton, a former slave from Arkansas, said:
“Ole boss wold tie em tuh a tree and whoop em if dey caught us even praying. We had er big black washpot an de way we prayed we’d go out an put our mouths to der groun and pray low and de sound wud go up under de pot an ole boss couldn’t hear us.3
Former slave Alex Woods of North Carolina recalled:
“Dey would not allow us to have prayer meetings in our houses, but we would gather late in de night and turn pots upside down inside de door to kill de sound and sing and pray for freedom. No one could hear unless dey eaves-drapped.”4
Lucretia Alexander, a young girl during slavery, described her father and
older slaves on the plantation as Christians. She confirmed that they turned the pots down to pray and “they used to sing their songs in a whisper and pray in a whisper. That was a prayer-meeting from house to house once or twice—once or twice a week.”5
Because of the danger, the slaves who prayed under pots appointed lookouts to alert them if the master or his overseers were coming. As the lookouts watched, others prayed, using barrels, iron wash pots and cooking kettles to muffle their voices. In her narrative, Kitty Hill recounted:
“Dey turned pots down ter kill de noise an’ held meetings at night. Dey had [slaves] ter watch an’ give de alarm if dey saw de [overseers]. Dey always looked out for [patrollers].”6
When asked why they used this method to conceal their voices, one former slave replied, “I don’t know where they learned to do that. I kinda think the Lord put them things in their minds to do for themselves, just like he helps us Christians in other ways. Don’t you think so?”7 At times, praying under a kettle could not contain their fervent love for Christ.
A great story comes from former Mississippi slave Edd Roby. He tells how one woman was praying under a pot and got full of o’ ’ligion, or religion.8 In other words, the Holy Spirit came upon her and she burst forth in such an exuberant worship that no kettle could contain it! Her marsa (master) and missus (master’s wife) came to stop the tumult, but God had something else in mind.Roby remembered:
“One day dis old woman was a prayin’ in de pot an’ got so full o’ ‘ligion ‘till she got her head out dat pot an’ was jus’ a tellin’ de news. Old Missus heard her an’ went to see what was de matter. Missus, she got happy an’ finally Marsa heard ‘em an’ went to see what de trouble was. Marsa, he got full o’ ‘ligion too an’ dey all had a big time. After dat day dey said dey never did whip ‘em fo’ prayin’ no more.9
This remarkable account shows how God used the prayers of this slave to set her masters spiritually free.
Of course, other slaves had different outcomes. Yet regardless of the consequences, they prayed anyway. Like the stories passed down in our family, many Christian slave narratives show how their ancestors yearned to hold underground gatherings because they wanted to pray for freedom and desired more of God. Candus Richardson reported that her friend’s husband, a very pious man, was often beaten because he would “steal off to the woods and pray . . . but the beatings never stopped him from praying. . . . Her husband was very religious. He just kept on praying. One time, [master] beat her husband so unmerciful for praying that his shirt was as red from blood stain as if you’d paint it with a brush.”10 Her claim is true: “It was his prayers and a whole lot of other slaves that cause you young folks to be free today.”11
The incredible accounts of these intercessors show the depth of their love for God. They risked their lives to spend quality, intimate time with their supreme master, Jesus Christ. The embrace they felt from His presence was worth risking their very lives. We can connect to and build upon this legacy.
Slaves also concealed prayer meetings by building temporary tabernacles, called brush harbors or hush harbors. In the dark of night, those first to the selected spot bent the boughs of trees as they walked along in the direction of the prayer meeting. Those following behind felt which direction these branches were bent, which guided them to the prayer meeting. After arriving in the desired location, they soaked quilts with water, which were used to build four walls around them. This created a tabernacle. The wet blankets helped to deaden the sound as they prayed.12
The prayer life of these slaves was incredible. In the following excerpt an anonymous slave intercedes, starting by referencing Psalm 137:1-4. He or she then makes entreaty for the Civil War and freedom and ends by praying for ensuing generations:
“Masser Jesus, like de people ob de ole time, de Jews, we weep by the side ob de ribber, wid de srings ob de harp all broken. But we sing ob de broken heart, as dem people could not do so. Hear us King, in our present state of sorrows. . . . Help us for our own good, and de good ob God’s blessed Union people, dat want all people free, whatsomebedder de color. . . . Master Jesus, you know de deep tribulation ob our hearts, dat our children dying in de camp, and as we tote dem from one place to tudder, and bury dem in de cold ground, Jesus, to go in spirit, to de God of de people whare de soul hab no spot nor color. Great King ob Kings, and Doctor ob Doctors, and God ob Battles, help us to be well. Help us to be able to fight wid de Union sogers de battle for de Union—help us to fight for liberty—fight for de country—fight for our homes, and our own free children, and our children’s children.”13
Tom Robinson from Arkansas was sold three times before his 15th birthday and was taken across America. As a result he was separated from his mother at an early age. After gaining his freedom, Robinson said his only memory was of his mother praying for everyone’s freedom. He says, “There she was a’praying, and on other plantations women was a’praying. All over the country the same prayer was prayed. Guess the Lord done heard the prayer and answered it.”14
The Power of Prayer
Prayers offered in secret, wet-blanket tabernacles and muffled under cast-iron kettles filled golden prayer bowls in Heaven! It’s exciting to think that our prayers are stored in the same place. Note that in Revelation 5:8, “bowls” is plural. We don’t know how many bowls hold our prayers, but I think it’s very likely that each of us has his or her own bowl in Heaven. I don’t know if they are literal or symbolic, and it doesn’t matter. The principle is still the same—God stores our prayers for use at the proper time. It is awesome to think our prayers go up to Heaven as incense and are collected inside bowls before God’s altar. At the right time, God turns these bowls over and pours out a powerful release in answer to prayer:
“And another angel came and stood over the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should add it unto the prayers of all the saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, went up before God out of the angel’s hand.
And the angel taketh the censer; and he filled it with the fire of the altar, and cast it upon the earth: and there followed thunders, and voices, and lightnings, and an earthquake” (Rev. 8:3-5, ASV).
That’s incredible! The part I like most is that God adds “much incense” to the incense caused by our prayers. Where does the added incense come from? Is it the Holy Spirit’s groans of Romans 8:26-27; the intercession of others around the world (past or present); or Jesus, our Great High Priest? I’m not sure—and, quite frankly, it could be all three. The beauty is that when we pray we are privileged to partner with God’s eternal purposes. He releases the answer to our prayers either when He knows it is the right time to do something or when enough prayer has accumulated to get the job done. This passage also says that God takes the prayers in our bowl and mixes them with fire from Heaven’s altar.
Picture this: God takes the same fire that fell on Sinai; the fire that consumed the sacrifice, rocks and water when Elijah was on the mountain; the fire that fell at Pentecost; the fire that destroys His enemies— the fire of God Almighty—and He mixes our bowl of prayers with it! Then He pours the contents of the bowl upon the earth. In the spiritual realm, lightning starts to flash, thunder crashes, and the earth quakes. This release of power in the spirit realm provides results in the natural realm.
The prayers of God’s people in America have produced two Great Awakenings, one in the 1730-1740 era and another in the 1840-1860 time frame. Whispered prayers on Earth were turned into precious incense, becoming shouts and loud cries in Heaven. God determined when the right time would be; then handed much incense to an angel who mixed it with ire from the altar. Thunder, fire, lightning and earthquakes were hurled to Earth and revivals shook America in these two Great Awakenings. In these outpourings, God’s presence wasn’t confined to a church building; rather, it spread over entire cities and regions. People received healings of all kinds. Men in pubs wept on their barstools, and people in the streets were convicted of their sins. These revivals were so powerful that they transformed the culture. An interesting irony concerning these two moves of God’s spirit is that both preceded major wars for freedom. The first one occurred before the Revolutionary War, a war in which an oppressed people sought to win their God-given right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. In it settlers were freed—but slaves weren’t.
The irony of the Second Great Awakening is that in the place where slavery thrived in America, a move of the Holy Spirit helped birth and greatly fueled the abolition movement, an attempt to rid the nation of slavery. Eventually these people in the North were willing to lay their lives down for this cause. The American Civil War was God’s tragic solution to an insidious injustice, and in some ways it was born of a great outpouring of His Spirit. Even in God’s wrath, he was remembering mercy (see Hab. 3:2). A great revival preceded the judgment, prepared a nation for war, helped turn injustice into justice and freed another generation of Americans. I know of no other nation that has survived a civil war of the magnitude we experienced. There was, indeed, much mercy interlaced with great judgment.
Slavery, the human injustice leading up to the second Awakening and the Civil War came to an end because a godly remnant of people, united in intercession and made one by the blood of Christ, worked together in a synergy creating agreement. A lighthouse of prayer, made up of black and white intercessors, was erected and turned a nation, preserving it from a fatal, destiny robbing collision with the rocks of injustice. Quiet but fervent prayers for freedom offered underneath kettles, joined with the prayers and sermons of a Great Awakening, were answered. One day God tipped over their prayer bowls in Heaven and changed society. Some translations of Revelation 8:5 say that when these prayer bowls arepoured upon Earth, they release “voices” (KJV, ASV).
Revivalists and abolitionists were voices for the voiceless and became answers to secret prayers. They became intercessory mediators who spoke out, risking their lives for the freedom of others. And like Abel, though they are dead, they’re still speaking (see Heb. 11:4). We can connect with their righteous hearts, prayers and sacrifice, and see another freedom-causing awakening today. One of those voices, the white abolitionist Elijah P. Lovejoy, was amartyr’s voice, killed for preaching against slavery. His last speech was an appeal before his city council for protection from mobs that had damaged his printing press because he printed abolitionist material. The council members told him he wouldn’t have any trouble if he stopped preaching against slavery. Here is his reply:
“I have counted the cost, and stand prepared freely to offer up my all in the service to God. Yes, sir, I am fully aware of all the sacrifice I make, in here pledging myself to continue this contest to the last. (Forgive these tears—I had not intended to shed them, and they flow not for myself but for others). . . . The time for fulfilling this pledge in my case, it seems to me, has come. Sir, I dare not flee away from Alton. Should I attempt it, I should feel that the angel of the Lord, with his flaming sword, was pursuing me wherever I went. It is because I fear God that I am not afraid of all who oppose me in this city. . . . Before God and you all, I here pledge myself to continue it, if need be, till death. If I fall, my grave shall be made in Alton.”15
His determined decree proved to be prophetic. Lovejoy’s printing press was torn down because of his stand against slavery, and he rebuilt it three times. When he tried to rebuild it a fourth time, it cost him his life. His house was set on fire, and as he ran out to escape the flames, he was shot by the mob that was waiting for him outside. He and others like him make up a multiracial, godly remnant who prayed, preached and sacrificed, taking their stand against the human injustice of their day. Like Moses, they chose to suffer with the people of God rather than compromise and wink at the sin of slavery (see Heb. 11:25-27).
History is powerful. But we’re not called only to be history rememberers—we’re called to also be history makers. We can build on our godly heritage. Yes, at times the past gives us reason to fear, but it also gives us reason to believe. God wants us to know that the same revival power that was available to people yesterday is present for us today. Many people in the 1700s and 1800s did their part praying for revival and the healing of this nation. Now our generation is being given an invitation to write our own history. Our prayers and actions are the pen, and our legacy as a nation is being determined by the decisions we’re making today. If written now, our epitaph would have to say that we were weighed in the balance and found wanting. Our condition is critical.
William Booth, founder of the Salvation Army, speaking of our day said,
“Six things will dominate young people at the turn of the century: Religion without the Holy Spirit; forgiveness without repentance; conversion without the new birth; Christianity without Christ; politics without God; and Heaven without hell.”16
Was he accurate? Yes, but it isn’t only young people who fit the description. Consider the following facts about our nation:
• 1998 brought about no change in the percentage of adults who are born-again Christians.
• When compared to statistics for 1991, church attendance and Bible reading are at lower levels of involvement. (This means we have actually lost ground.)
• Six out of 10 Americans (61 percent) agree that “the Holy Spirit is a symbol of God’s presence or power but is not a living entity.”
• A majority (55 percent) of all born-again Christians reject the existence of the Holy Spirit.
• One out of every five born-again Christians believes that the Bible contains errors.
• Only 44 percent of born-again Christians are very certain of the absoluteness of moral truth.
• Rather than following Jesus’ exhortation to be in the world but not of it, today’s Christians seem to thirst for the opposite reality—to be inseparable from the world, while somehow retaining the aura of devout followers of Christ.17
We need the cast-iron faith of our forefathers. Peter Marshall and David Manuel write about the destiny, history and current condition of America in Sounding Forth the Trumpet. They make the point that it is not too late for America:
“Today, if we turn back to God and seek His face and turn from our wicked ways, we will experience a similar revival. Hopefully it will reverse our downward slide into a new Dark Age. Even if it does not, it will prepare us for what we must go through.”18
We agree that there is still time for America. God doesn’t release His divine judgment until He has fully exhausted His divine mercy. It is not too late for us as a nation to turn back to God.
The story is told of a ship captain who saw lights ahead on a dark night and told his radioman to send a message to these lights:
“Alter your course, ten degrees south.” The reply came back, “Alter your course ten degrees north.” The captain grew angry. Who would dare deny his commands? Utilizing his rank, he sent the message, “Alter your course ten degrees south; I am the captain!” The reply came back, “Alter your course ten degrees north; I am Seaman 3rd Class Jones.” The captain, knowing what fear it would evoke, sent the intimidating message, “Alter your course, ten degrees south; I am a battleship!”
The reply came back, “Alter your course ten degrees north. I am a lighthouse.”
In the midst of dark and foggy times when lines are blurred, good is called evil and evil, good. We cannot allow our prideful minds to miss the direction of an invisible God. Through prayer and action we must be lighthouse intercessors, shining His light and piercing the darkness of deception. We don’t have to blind others with its strength—if we release the light God’s way, it will guide them. God’s desire is to bring all of the parts in the Body of Christ together to shed His light on America and guide it in the right direction. God is extending to us an invitation to tip prayer bowls over our family, neighborhood, city and nation. Angels are standing at attention, waiting for our incense, so that they can add it to the prayers of other saints. The synergy of our prayers will erect a lighthouse that affects national destinies, sets captives free and turns millions to the Light of the World.
Speaking in Senegal, President George W. Bush, in a powerful speech on the subject of American slavery, said:
“In America, enslaved Africans learned the story of the exodus from Egypt and set their own hearts on a promised land of freedom. Enslaved Africans discovered a suffering Savior and found he was more like themselves than their masters. Enslaved Africans heard the ringing promises of the Declaration of Independence and asked the self-evident question, “Then why not me?” That deliverance was demanded by escaped slaves named Frederick Douglas and Sojourner Truth . . . Booker T. Washington . . . and ministers of the gospel named Leon Sullivan and Martin Luther King, Jr. . . . We can discern eternal standards in the deeds of William Wilberforce and John Quincy Adams and Harriet Beecher Stowe, and Abraham Lincoln. These men and women, black and white, burned with a zeal for freedom, and they left behind a different and better nation. Their moral vision caused Americans to examine our hearts, to correct our Constitution, and to teach our children the dignity and equality of every person of every race. By a plan known only to Providence, the stolen sons and daughters of Africa helped to awaken the conscience of America. The very people traded into slavery helped to set America free.”19
These bold and powerful words of President Bush bring light to the irony of an enslaved people’s bringing freedom and justice to America. As a nation we’re in need of freedom again. We need a society-changing revival that frees America from the chains of sin. Think about it. Wouldn’t it be like God, in His justice and irony, to remember the prayers of a slave generation, mix them with ours and free a nation once again through another powerful great awakening? Please, Lord, tip the bowls!
“Light of the World, turn our nation in the right direction. Raise up a lighthouse of prayer with believers of all races who will shine brightly in dark places and be voices for the voiceless. Give us the cast-iron faith to believe, to fight, to pray, to war for You and our nation. Father, remember the prayers of Your Son and those who have been devoted to Him. Remember their sacrifices, and tip the bowls of prayer over America gain.Release Your thunder, fire, lightning and earthquakes! Come with Your earthquakes and shake everything from the Church to government to the marketplace with another awakening. Release Your lightning and shock us into the reality of our desperate need for You. Let Your fire come and ignite a fiery, loving desire for Jesus Christ! Bring the fear of the Lord and holiness back in Your Church. Send another awakening, oh, God! In Jesus’ name, so be it”.20
1. F. Ross Holland, Lighthouses (New York: Barnes and Noble Books, 1995), p. 111.
2. Albert J. Raboteau, Slave Religion: The Invisible Institution in the Antebellum South (New York:
Oxford University Press, 1978), p. 215.
3. “Slave Narratives: Laura Thornton,” MyFamily.com.
4. Federal Writer’s Project, United States Work Project Administration, “Born in Slavery: Slave
Narratives from the Federal Writers’ Project, 1936-1938: North Carolina Narratives,” vol. 11,
part 2, Alex Woods, p. 416. http://memory.loc.gov/cgibin/
ampage?collId=mesn&fileName=112/mesn112.db&recNum=417 (accessed June 4,
5. Federal Writer’s Project, United States Work Project Administration, “Born in Slavery: Slave
Narratives from the Federal Writers’ Project, 1936-1938, Arkansas Narratives,” vol. 2, part 1,
Lucretia Alexander, p. 35. http://memory.loc.gov/cgibin/
ampage?collId=mesn&fileName=021/mesn021.db&recNum=36 (accessed June 4,
6. Federal Writer’s Project, United States Work Project Administration, “Born in Slavery: Slave
Narratives from the Federal Writers’ Project, 1936-1938, North Carolina Narratives,” vol. 11,
part 1, Kitty Hill, p. 425. http://memory.loc.gov/cgibin/
ampage?collId=mesn&fileName=111/mesn111.db&recNum=425 (accessed June 4
7. Raboteau, Slave Religion: The Invisible Institution in the Antebellum South (New York: Oxford
University Press, 1978), p. 216.
8. “Slave Narratives: Edd Roby,” MyFamily.com.
10. Federal Writer’s Project, United States Work Project Administration, “Born in Slavery: Slave
Narratives from the Federal Writers’ Project, 1936-1938, Indiana Narratives,” vol. 5, Candus
Richardson, pp. 158-159. http://memory.loc.gov/cgibin/
ampage?collId=mesn&fileName=050/mesn050.db&recNum=162 (accessed June 4,
12. James Washington, Conversations with God: Two Centuries of Prayers by African Americans
(New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 1994), p. 51.
13. Ibid., p. 46.
14. Federal Writer’s Project, United States Work Project Administration, “Born in Slavery: Slave
Narratives from the Federal Writers’ Project, 1936-1938, Arkansas Narratives,” vol. 2, part 6,
Tom Robinson, p. 64. http://memory.loc.gov/cgibin/
query/r?ammem/mesnbib:@field(DOCID+@lit(mesn/026/066061)) (accessed June 4,
15. Harriet Beecher Stowe, Key to Uncle Tom’s Cabin (New York: Signet Classics, 1966), p. 227.
16. Taken from sermon notes, February 14, 1998, Dutch Sheets, Dallas, TX.
17. Dutch Sheets, Praying For America (Ventura, CA: Regal Books, 2001), p. 22.
18. Peter Marshall and David Manuel, Sounding Forth the Trumpet (Grand Rapids, MI: Fleming
H. Revell, 1999), p. 16.
19. George W. Bush, “Remarks by the President on Goree Island” (speech, Goree Island,
Senegal, July 8, 2003), White House.
http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2003/07/20030708-1.html (accessed June 8,
20. See 1 Peter 2:9; Hebrews 11:36-40; Revelation 8:3-7.