The following is a personal testimony of the
pastor and builder of the Fountain Of Life Tabernacle church, Rev. James E. Banks.
Brother Banks pastored the church until his death in 1995. This
testimony was printed in pamplet form in 1977. The natural work was
completed in 1980. As of present, May 2021, services and times
Greetings to you in the Name of Jesus Christ our Lord. I feel that now is the time to give my testimony of the great calling of God. First I must say that this is the (FIRST) of the (THREE) (TABERNACLES) to be built upon this earth, prior to the COMING OF JESUS CHRIST, known as The Tabernacle of David.
Now as I think back over some 11 years, I marvel at the way God has led me. I think back to the day, in the early part of 1966, when God spoke out of Heaven and called me to a 21 day FAST. On the 17th day of the Fast, God spoke again from the Heavens and said go to the highway and build for me a house. This was a commandment; I knew I had a great job to do.
After finding the property on Highway 49 at Lyman, Mississippi, God began to speak many things to me. I had only $1.00 to start with and no congregation except my wife and she has stood by me through joys and sorrow, through laughter and tears. Soon God began to work miracles. Soon I had an option on the land and in a short time had it paid for. Then God began to speak to me ... "Do not put my House in bondage". So there never has been a debt.
We have never solicited the first dime, we have never made a drive for finances, we have never had a bond, we have never taken a pledge, and we have never had a debt. Truly God has manifested Himself in a great and mighty way.
Then God spoke to put a small building on the land, and he would give me a small group of people that would have a will to work and I have never in all my years as a Minister and a Christian seen such workers for Christ.
We built the little building without debt; we lovingly called it the Little Brown Chapel. It was there where 8 prayer meetings were held each week and 3 services on Sunday. It was in the Little Brown Chapel that God began to speak out of Heaven and we saw God perform such miracles.
God called me to another 21 day Fast, and spoke many things to me pertaining to the future here on the Coast. Not long after this 21 day Fast, God called me to a 40 day Fast. I did not taste a bite of food for 40 days. I saw Jesus in person on two different occasions during the 40 days of fasting. Then God began to reveal Himself to me in a much greater way. First of all, he already blessed me with a faithful and loving wife, and then He began to give me a few of the most faithful people I have ever known.
My wife and I were the first to start clearing the land. We started with shovels and axes and lawnmowers when we should have had bulldozers. Soon a few loyal Saints were added to the Body and as each person worked to beautify the land, each person knew that it was (HOLY GROUND).
Then came a time when God spoke again and I was compelled by the Spirit of God to Fast another 21 days. This time it was different; God spoke to me to Fast the first 7 days and after that He would give me the details and pattern by which to build the Tabernacle in the remaining 14 days of the Fast.
On the 8th day of the 21 day Fast, God began to give me the details. I knew nothing of building but each day God gave
me instructions until the 20th day of the 21 day Fast when He finish the details of the Tabernacle, even to what type of braces, and where to put them, and for structural strength in the foundation
to hold up this heavy marble building. Then God spoke to me to first lay the foundation, then cease and go build a fountain, which is also a waterfall. Now the specifications for the waterfall God gave on the 21st day of the Fast.
I knew that the Commission was great and that God would have to give me the ability to carry out (HIS PLAN), for by now I knew that this was not to be an ordinary church. God said to build first the foundation for the Tabernacle, then build the waterfall and get it flowing for (HIS GLORY).
After my wife and I went to the Port Commission and told them our story, they gave us permission to dig out the old ballast stones that came in on the old sail ships. After 3 months of hard labor, we had enough rocks to start the waterfall. Soon we had it erected and flowing for (HIS GLORY) ... A small phase of the Great Commission finished.
Now God spoke to start building (HIS HOUSE). This was another great opportunity to see God work (HIS GREAT MIRACLES). We had $55.00 to start a million and one-half dollar building, and a handful of dedicated people. I knelt and prayed for God to multiply the $55.00 and we have been building ever since. We have worked seemingly slow, but have never stopped. One of the greatest reasons for going slow is, that I never moved in ordering materials until God spoke. Then whether we had money or not did not matter. I knew that when the material was delivered, God would furnish the money.
Many materials in the Tabernacle have come from many countries of the World; that again slowed us down in building. Many times I have ordered thousands of dollars worth of materials without a single dollar to pay for it and God furnished the money on arrival.
When we ordered the first two freight car loads of marble, we did not have a dollar to pay for it, but God had spoken to order it. When it arrived, we had the money to pay for it. REMEMBER GOD HAD SPOKEN TO ORDER IT. We also ordered a number of truck loads of marble the same way and God met the need each time.
Now the Tabernacle of the (MOST HIGH GOD) is finished and the commandment for this particular portion of the great work here on Highway 49 at Lyman is fulfilled. Now as you reach the Tabernacle, you climb 7 beautiful marble steps that are 30 feet wide, you pass between 2 beautiful marble pillars, then you are on the marble porch looking up at the top of the blue tinted glass door. There is a 4 foot long piece of marble engraved with these words: (PRAISE YE THE LORD).
Now you are ready to enter the (INNER COURT) of the Sanctuary. On entering the (INNER COURT), you will step on the most beautiful floor in white and gold. Then you will see a 20 foot long marble flower planter. On either end of the flower planter is a pillar. These pillars are gorgeously overlaid with milk white quartz and crystals and then overlaid in (PURE GOLD). Stretched between the 2 pillars is a fisherman's net. Above the net this inscription: (Follow Me And I Will Make You Fishers Of Men.); Matthew 4: 19.
Now as you leave the (INNER COURT) and enter the Sanctuary, your feet touch the beautiful wall-to-wall crimson carpet. You are in full view of the twelve beautiful pillars overlaid in gold. The
presence of God is so real at this point that everyone realizes that they have stepped on Holy Ground. You then look toward the front and see the massive (HOLY PLACE) overlaid with gold. The beauty is beyond all comprehension and everyone at this point begins to feel the Glory of God. You look to either side of the (HOLY PLACE) and you behold the (WHITE MARBLE ALTARS). Directly above the Altars on either side of the (HOLY PLACE), you see 2 (SACRED DESKS) with white marble pedestals and the top of the center being inlaid with quartz and overlaid with gold; each bearing a beautiful (CRYSTAL CROSS). The entire back wall of the (DAIS) is covered in royal purple velvet drapes. God has spoken that from the (HOLY PLACE) would come forth (HIS
Now we shall go to the Upper Room. The entrance to the Upper Room is outside of the East end of the Tabernacle. Now you are starting to climb the 33 marble steps that lead to the Upper Room. Jesus was on earth 33 years when He took His Disciples to the Upper Room where they shared with (HIM THE LAST SUPPER).
You are now on the first landing where the beautiful (MARBLE PRAYING HANDS) are pointed toward Heaven. These were sculptured in Italy for the Tabernacle. Now you have arrived on the balcony overlooking the beautiful (COURT YARD). Sitting in the (COURT YARD) is the most beautiful building in the world, The Covenant House of God, enclosed in white quartz and inlaid inside with most of the Bible stones. All the Bible stones are in the Tabernacle or Covenant House.
Now we are entering the Upper Room where hundreds of people can pray. It is here where members of the Body of Christ, or disciplined ones, shall come to take the (LORD'S SUPPER) and partake of footwash. Now the beautiful (SACRED DESK) that you see is patterned after the (SACRED DESK) in the (SANCTUARY).
Now this is the 4-square room that will be the meeting place for the Board of (BISHOPS). In here is the table that will be used as the Board table; it is built with one head. The table has 3 legs; no nails, bolts, or screws, and having more than 50 varieties of wood from all parts of the World. The table was built by hand, without measurement. It was built after I saw a vision and has over 1600 pieces of wood in it. Now at the head of the table is a (CHAIR) where never man has sat. This is reserved for the presence of Jesus Christ, for we believe He is going to return again.
The (CHAIR) is also made by hand and put together with wooden pegs. God showed me how He wanted me to make it. This (CHAIR) or (THRONE) sits at the only head to the table. It is overlaid with gold and upholstered in (ROYAL PURPLE). It has over 1600 precious stones and jewels inlaid in the (CHAIR). Topping the (CHAIR) is a huge (CROWN) with 3 points adorned with stones and jewels.
This is not the end, but just the beginning of the greatest work on Earth that will reach the climatic Glory as Jesus prepares to come back to set up His Kingdom. As my wife and I and our faithful group work on in the first of the 3 Tabernacles
that will be built before His return, we invite you to come. We have prayer meeting every night in the great Upper Room at 7 o'clock; 4 services on Sunday in the beautiful Sanctuary starting at 10: 15 A.M. Now God has set a standard on His Holy Ground. All ladies and little girls (MUST) wear dresses well below the knee ... No pantsuits, shorts, or low-cut dresses. Men must wear long trousers with shirts buttoned at the neck.
Rev. James E.Banks