Tag Archives: Prayer

Hey Senior Citizens! The American Church Needs New Leaders, Why Not You? (Part 5)

 

I am seventy-three years old.

You can call it pride or whatever, but I have always wanted to see the Lord return in my lifetime. That is until recently when I felt the Lord speak to my heart, “I am not returning in your lifetime. Help prepare your children and grandchildren for the End-Times.”

Whatever disappointment I might have felt at the time was erased by the urgency of His words.

Many preachers talk about the “great falling away” as if it will be just a slight bump in the road for the American church. After all, America has the greatest concentration of Christians within its borders of any nation in the world. 80 to 90 million Evangelical or born again Christians by many estimates.

Let no one in any way deceive or entrap you, for that day will not come unless the apostasy comes first [that is, the great rebellion, the abandonment of the faith by professed Christians], and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction [the Antichrist, the one who is destined to be destroyed] (2 Thessalonians 2:3 AMP)

Do you actually believe the Apostle Paul was talking about a slight bump in the road when he wrote about the “great falling away?”

I don’t.

It’s my belief that if we don’t take drastic steps that 50 to 75% or more of America’s Christians will abandon their faith during the soon coming End-Times period. That’s forty to seventy million believers!

Why such a large number?

Corrie Ten Boom’s 1974 letter about the Rapture explains most of my reasoning:

There are some among us teaching there will be no tribulation, that the Christians will be able to escape all this. These are the false teachers that Jesus was warning us to expect in the latter days.

In China, the Christians were told, “Don’t worry, before the tribulation comes you will be translated – raptured.” Then came a terrible persecution.  Millions of Christians were tortured to death. Later I heard a Bishop from China say, sadly, “We have failed. We should have made the people strong for persecution, rather than telling them Jesus would come first. Tell the people how to be strong in times of persecution, how to stand when tribulation comes — to stand and not faint.”

Somehow, most American believers have swallowed the same poisonous Pre-Trib Rapture doctrine and believe we won’t suffer even though Jesus said –

For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened. See, I have told you beforehand. (Matthew 24:21-22, 25)

We believers are the elect and He is warning us to prepare ourselves ahead of time.

(Excerpt from my series, Will We End Up Being a Part of the Great Falling Away. You can read the whole series here.)

If you’re like me, your first thoughts after reading the above is to check your own walk with the Lord. This is a normal reaction, but I believe we’re missing the main point of this article. You see, we should be more concerned about our children and grandchildren than ourselves.

How would you feel about learning at some future time in eternity that your children and grandchildren were a part of the Great Falling Away? I’d be devastated. How about you?

So, if I’m accurate about the Great Falling Away, with as many as seventy million believers falling away from the faith, what must we do now?

(Continued…but if you want to read all of the parts to date, you can go here.)

 

2 Comments

Filed under America, Christianity, End-Times, Falling Away, Geezers, Judgment Seat of Christ, Prophecy

First the Blade (Chapter 15)

First the Blade 

© 2019 by Larry Nevenhoven

Chapter 15

Building a Foundation of Faith (m)

Pride, not walking in love, fear of man, and unforgiveness are the four biggest hindrances for not receiving answers to prayers. Each undermines faith.

Let’s now talk about what I call God’s x factor… x being an unknown, like in an algebraic equation.

In 1995, I dated a wonderful woman and really thought I would marry her. I even had many prophetic words, which seemed to fit her, or at least, I thought so.

While driving my truck back from her apartment in January 1995, I had a conversation with the Lord. “Jesus, You need to get us married as quick as possible,” I said.

My truck cab filled with laughter. It was as if heaven opened up and the Lord along with hundreds of angels laughed at what I said. The laughter was the “hold your belly and roll on the floor” type. It continued and continued.

I pulled my truck over to the side of the road because the laughter was so contagious tears rolled down my cheeks. I couldn’t continue driving.

The laughter eventually ceased and I headed home. As I drove, I wondered, what was so funny, but I convinced myself heaven was overjoyed with me being in love.

One obstacle after another frustrated my relationship with the lady over the next fourteen months. I figured it was spiritual warfare and I needed to fast, pray, and hold strong in faith to win the victory.

My roommate decided to get married in March 1996, and asked me to preside over the wedding ceremony. A dinner was planned at our apartment so I could meet the maid of honor, the best man, and a mysterious lady, who was the bride’s spiritual mother.

I answered the doorbell the night of the dinner and greeted people while my roommate prepared the meal. The mysterious lady turned out to be a pretty blond lady, about my age, who happened to be single. She sat next to me at the meal.

We worshiped the Lord and prayed for each other after the meal. All felt the mysterious lady should pray for each of us and she agreed. As she prayed for someone, I looked at her and what I saw instantly changed my life.

No longer did I see a mysterious lady, but instead, I saw my wife. And with that prophetic glimpse, I fell head over heels in love with her. I was smitten beyond any earthly reason. It was all I could do to pay attention for the rest of the evening.

I turned to my roommate and his fiancée after everyone left. “I have fallen in love with Carol,” I said.

Both laughed. They had been praying for Carol and me for months because each received a separate vision from the Lord about the two of us marrying each other. “But the Lord told us not to say anything to you,” said my roommate, “because the Lord said Larry is so stubborn he’ll do just the opposite.”

Thirty minutes later, I phoned Carol. “What have you done to my life, it’s turned upside down?” I said.

She laughed and admitted she missed her exit on the way home, thinking about me.

Our first date was on the next night, a Saturday night. We became engaged on Sunday morning and were married four weeks later, on Good Friday, 1996.

The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our sons forever, that we may observe all the words of this law. (Deuteronomy 29:29)

 God is a sovereign King. He is the Boss. Period.

He knows what is best for each of us. He has His reasons for allowing things to happen in our lives. He is the Potter and we are the clay in His hands. All of our prayers, even though prayed at the highest levels of faith, will not change His mind about His plans for us.

“He allows in His wisdom what He could easily prevent by His power.” (Permission Granted, Graham Cooke and Gary Goodell, Destiny Image Publishers, 2006, pp. 24)

Now that a solid foundation is prepared, how do we build mustard-seed faith on it?

(Continued…but if you want to read all of the parts to date, you can go here.)

2 Comments

Filed under America, Christianity, Faith, New Christians, Prayer, Writing

First the Blade (Chapter 14)

First the Blade 

© 2019 by Larry Nevenhoven

Chapter 14

Building a Foundation of Faith (l)

 “I wouldn’t take a million dollars for my experiences, but you couldn’t pay me two million dollars to go through some of them again,” said Kenneth Hagin.

His words are my exact sentiments about my experiences selling cars at ten different dealerships. One such experience dealt with a reason why many prayers are not answered.

After working for a year at a large GM dealership, the management fired me in early 1993. A used car dealership hired me a few days later. The dealership paid no base salary or benefits. My income depended solely on commissions from car sales. So, no car sales meant no income for me.

The first few months were fantastic and management even considered promoting me. A sales drought then hit and I didn’t sell a car for weeks. Every deal I worked on fell through. The other salesmen stayed far away from me, worried that whatever I had was contagious and would infect their sales.

I had no money. My vehicle sat in front of my apartment, hungry for gas. Bills piled up. My groceries came from a food bank. I walked everywhere, even the two miles back and forth to work.

“Why not quit?” you ask.

I couldn’t quit because I felt the Lord wanted me to stay. I believed He was doing something in my heart. All I could do was trudge through the valley until He delivered me.

After five weeks of no sales and zero income, something happened.

A young couple liked a car I showed them. Everything seemed perfect and we talked about meeting again in two days and writing up the order. Hope replaced the dark clouds hanging over me.

The following day was a day off for me.

A salesman met me at the door two days later when I arrived at work and took me aside. “Your couple came in yesterday and Kevin wrote up the order. He stole them from you. What are you going to do about that?” he said.

I shrugged my shoulders. “I don’t know,” I replied.

Kevin and the sales manager were off that particular day. There was not much I could do until the next day, but I was devastated for the rest of the day.

Early the next morning, I went for a walk and the Holy Spirit began speaking with me. “You have to forgive Kevin,” the Holy Spirit whispered to my heart.

“I can’t,” I replied.

“You have to,” He said.

“No, I absolutely can’t forgive Kevin. I hurt too much,” I said as I continued walking.

“If you don’t forgive him then this will happen…” He said, relating what would occur if I refused to forgive Kevin.

“I don’t care. He’s a thief and a liar and I’m hungry,” I said.

“You have to forgive him,” He whispered to my heart.

I sighed and stopped walking. “Okay. I can’t forgive him on my own, but if You help me forgive him, I will.”

And just like that, I felt the power of the Holy Spirit surge through me. I forgave him. No longer did I hold a debt against Kevin. He could have the commissions from the sale and I blessed him.

Later that same day, while Kevin was busy with a customer, I helped another one of his clients and wrote the order up for Kevin. I even delivered the car and sent the people off. Kevin made $400 commission without ever doing anything.

I was totally set free.

Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father who is in heaven will also forgive you your transgressions. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father who is in heaven forgive your transgressions. (Mark 11:24-25)

Unforgiveness is one of the major reasons why our prayers are not answered. It is such a malignant sin that if it is not remedied in an individual’s life, it will eventually result in bitterness, which defiles other people.

See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many are defiled. (Hebrews 12:15)

If your prayers are not being answered in a prompt fashion, ask the Holy Spirit if you have unforgiveness. If you do, then forgive, but if you can’t forgive because the pain is too much, ask the Holy Spirit to help you. His name is the Helper and He will help you.

What is a surprise reason that our prayers are not answered?

(Continued…but if you want to read all of the parts to date, you can go here.)

2 Comments

Filed under America, Christianity, Faith, New Christians, Prayer, Writing

NEWS FLASH: 13,000 or More Witches to Cast Spell on President Trump. What Should We Do?

 

Michael Snyder at End of the American Dream reports that “as Halloween approaches, thousands of witches will cast a ‘binding spell’ on Donald Trump on October 25th.” (See full article here.)

I am neither Republican, Democrat nor Independent. In fact, I have not voted in an election since 2008.

Yet even so, it wouldn’t matter to me if these witches were casting spells on former President Obama, President Trump or presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren, I wouldn’t want witches and demons intervening in our politics.

How could one chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight, unless their Rock had sold them, and the Lord had surrendered them? (Deuteronomy 32:30)

Although Satan and his demonic allies love to pile it on in spiritual battles, God has His mathematical formula to fight spiritual battles. One Christian standing in faith can defeat a thousand witches backed by demons and two standing in faith and agreement can defeat ten thousand witches backed by demons.

Using God’s formula, we can expect three or four Christians standing in faith and agreement to handle these so-called witches backed by demons. Just three or four!

What should we do?

Like a fluttering sparrow or a darting swallow, an undeserved curse does not come to rest. (Proverbs 26:2 NIV)

First of all, ask the Holy Spirit to check each of our hearts. We don’t want the curse intended for President Trump to land on us. So, let’s make sure we don’t have pride, anger, hatred or another sin when we pray.

Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior (1 Timothy 2:1-3)

Second, we need to understand that God wants us to pray and intercede for our government officials, not curse them.

Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. (Matthew 18:19)

Third, standing in agreement moves the Father to act on our prayers.

Okay, let’s pray in faith and agreement:

Father in Jesus’ name, we plead the protective blood of Jesus over President Trump, his wife Melania, his children and grandchildren. And Father, because of 1 Timothy 2:1-3 and Matthew 18:19, we command all of the binding spells and curses uttered by witches and their variants to fall to the ground and have no effect on the Trump family for this Halloween season. Plus, we cry out to You for mercy for all of the witches and ask the Holy Spirit to open up their hearts to the love of the truth so they might be saved. Amen.

If you have prayed the above prayer in faith, just thank the Lord for His victory in this battle.

 

3 Comments

Filed under America, Christianity, Faith, Prayer, spiritual warfare, Witchcraft

Will We End Up Being A Part of the Great Falling Away? (Part 5)

Recently, I talked with a youth pastor of a large denomination. “What are you reading right now?” I asked.

She mentioned the name of a book.

“Oh, is that a book on inner healing?” I replied.

“Yes,” she said, ” and it’s very good.”

“I struggle with inner healing. Every book on inner healing that I’ve ever seen is a takeoff on John and Mark Sandford’s book, one that I don’t recommend to anyone.”

“Well, a pastor in our denomination recently committed suicide. So our pastor wants to be proactive and help our staff handle the everyday stress of working with our church’s members. Plus, a counselor meets with each of us every week to help us.”

“Oh dear, I struggle with counselors, too.”

Thank God, the conversation died without me putting both of my feet in my mouth.

I understand there are numerous mental problems, such as bipolar disorders, schizophrenia, post-traumatic stress disorder and others, where we believers can’t heal the person by simply speaking in faith and saying, “Go, in Jesus’ name.” We just aren’t there yet! Maybe soon though!

But this was not a case of handling severe mental disorders, this was a pastor trying to protect his staff from stress and emotional strain. And what does he do? He reaches for what the world considers its best answer for these problems: psychology.

Although considered a science, psychology is anything but that. There are hundreds of different methods for every problem. Most of them backed by the works of Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung. Both were ungodly men!

So, why not fast and pray and trust the Lord? Isn’t He more than able to protect a church’s staff?

I assume this same pastor preaches a sermon each Sunday telling the congregation to trust in Jesus, right? But shouldn’t the pastor be honest enough to declare his staff’s lack of faith in Jesus?

How would that play out? Probably not well.

Can you imagine telling Christians in North Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Somalia, Libya, Pakistan and other nations where Christians are tortured and killed for their beliefs that they also need psychologists to help them handle their stress and anxiety? They’d laugh at our weak faith!

No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon [money, possessions, fame, status, or whatever is valued more than the Lord]. (Matthew 6:24 AMP)

The number three reason for becoming a part of the Great Falling Away – now or in the future – will be trusting in the world system more than in Christ and His ways.

(Continued in Part 6…but if you want to read all of the parts to date, you can go here.)

2 Comments

Filed under America, Christianity, Day of the Lord, End-Times, Falling Away, Prayer, Prophecy

God’s Love Must Torpedo Inner Cities’ Bitterness…Or Else (Part 9)

I have used the fictional story about a black preacher walking into a small town with mainly white citizens to hold a healing crusade many times in the past. (See here.) But today, I want to offer a fictional take-off from that one and write about a white prophet going into an inner city to speak the word of the Lord to its black citizens. 

Can you imagine an old white guy driving a red Ford pickup into the middle of a crowd of people at a rally? And honking his horn at the same time? I couldn’t imagine something like that ever happening until it did last Saturday afternoon.

Maybe I should start at the beginning and tell the whole story, okay?

My name is Jalen Simmons. I write a syndicated newspaper column entitled, “Unashamed Angry Black Voice.” The column appears in sixty major newspapers throughout our nation. I also appear on TV as a contributor on inner city happenings.

A week ago, a friend suggested I should attend a black activist rally taking place in West Englewood at Ogden Park. This inner-city area of Chicago is the city’s most dangerous neighborhood where poverty and crime are off the charts and lives matter little to police and politicians.

On that day, I positioned myself in the middle of the crowd, estimated at five thousand black people, to better hear and understand the crowd’s reactions to the fiery speakers. The first three speakers raised their voices against the city of Chicago, its police department and white supremacy for the wrongs done to black people. Each moved the crowd closer and closer to its emotional edge.

But just as the militant keynote speaker, Deshaun Lewis, was being introduced on the platform, new sounds could be heard. A honking horn. An engine being revved up. And people screaming, “Look out! He’ll run us over!”

I looked over my left shoulder and saw a red pickup truck heading straight toward me. I jumped out of the way along with the rest of the crowd. The truck stopped right in front of me.

The driver, a seventyish white male, jumped out of the Ford pickup and into the back of the truck almost in one motion. He held a wireless microphone in his right hand which was connected to a speaker system.

“Listen up,” he said, “I have come here today to speak to you in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.”

A united “No” was shouted by the crowd. Black men stepped forth to remove the so-called white prophet and his truck.

“Do not touch my truck or the hand of the Lord will come upon you and strike you blind for a time,” said the white man.

The crowd laughed until twenty-three men touched the pickup truck and began screaming, “I’m blind. Help me! Help me!” Then, the laughter stopped and fear gripped the crowd.

“Men, keep quiet. Sit down and when I’m done I will lay hands on you and your sight will immediately return.”

The twenty-three men sat down.

The old white man had the attention of the whole crowd. Everyone stood in silence, even those on the speakers platform.

“The Lord has sent me to tell you,” proclaimed the white man, “your problems are not caused by the city of Chicago, its police department or white Americans. Your problems are caused by your sins and your bitterness. You need to first ask the Lord for His forgiveness and then most of you will have to ask forgiveness of white Americans for your hatred toward them, too.

“If you choose to humble yourself before God and men, God will pour out a blessing on West Englewood. Murders will stop. Crime will end. Jobs will open up. You will be able to walk on the sidewalks of your neighborhood without fear once again. West Englewood will be known as a place of light and a refuge for all.

“But if you ignore these words and continue in the direction you’re heading, your streets will be covered with the bodies of your dead sons and daughters. And this will happen soon!”

He paused and looked around at the crowd. His blue eyes looked right into my heart.

“God’s words to you are the same ones Moses said to Israel, ‘I have set before you life and good, death and evil.” Now, you must choose which way you will walk from this day forward.”

The white prophet jumped down onto the ground. He laid hands on and prayed for each blind man. They all received their sight again.

Then, he climbed into his pickup and drove off.

Was he a prophet sent by God?

Twenty-four men have no doubts and I pray all of the crowd will agree with us.

(Continued in Part 10…but if you want to read all of the parts to date, you can go here.)

6 Comments

Filed under African-American, America, black people, Christianity, Church, Deliverance, Kingdom of God, Prayer, Prophecy, Race, Race wars

God’s Love Must Torpedo the Inner Cities’ Bitterness…Or Else (Part 4)

“American Christianity would collapse if the pastors were removed.” (Frank Viola)

The Greek word poimēn is translated into the English word pastor(s) only one time in the New Testament.

And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers (Ephesians 4:11)

The other seventeen times the Greek word poimēn is used in the New Testament, it is translated into the English word shepherd(s), as in –

I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. (John 10:11)

But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them. (John 10:12)

There is no evidence in the New Testament of a pastor – or shepherd – being the scripturally chosen person to preach a sermon every Sunday to a church and also being the CEO in charge of the affairs of that group of believers. Not one mention!

Even Paul in his letters to the churches did not address his messages to pastors. He wrote to all of the believers. Only in one letter did Paul make a special reference to elders, and that was a fleeting one in the first verse of Philippians.

So, how does a modern pastor justify his position as the CEO of a church?

Mainly through tradition.

Where did the tradition of the pastor begin?

Martin Luther dropped the title of priest from himself during the reformation and added the title of pastor instead. From that point forward, pastors became the heads of the Protestant churches.

Now, just so you know, I do not disagree that God has used many pastors over the centuries as His anointed leaders. Yet even so, we are in the last days, and I believe God wants His Son to take His rightful place in His body —

For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, ( 1 Timothy 2:5)

I think Frank Viola exaggerated a little bit about American Christianity collapsing if the pastors are removed because many hundreds of thousands of strong believers have already walked away from the traditional church. These believers would not be affected by pastors being removed from the religious scene.

But if Viola would have narrowed his focus and said, “Black Christianity would collapse if its pastors were removed,” then I believe he would have been closer to the truth.

(Continued in Part 5…but if you want to read all of the parts to date, you can go here.)

2 Comments

Filed under African-American, America, black people, Christianity, Church, Kingdom of God, Prophecy, Race, Race wars, Tradition