Tag Archives: Prophecy

The Apostles: Men Doomed to Death (Part 6)

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“Been there! Done that! Bought the tee-shirt!” should be the slogan printed on shirts worn by apostles.

Why?

Because the phrase aptly describes the apostles’ journeys into their callings and throughout the length of their callings.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. (2 Corinthians 1: 3-4)

As a young Christian, I remember another believer saying to me in a hushed, reverent whisper, “You know, that person is called to be an apostle.”

How awesome! I thought at the time.

To be honest, I was flabbergasted at how glamorous the word apostle sounded to my ears. It seemed to be the height of the Christian pyramid. The top hierarchal rung. The creme de la creme of callings.

Of course, I was naive and had no understanding of callings at all, and especially that of an apostle. But since then, I’ve studied and learned a few things.

You see, the apostle is specifically prepared and trained ahead of time by the Lord to help the Body of Christ journey through treacherous, tough times before they take place.

How does the Lord prepare His servants – the apostles?

If your guess is that the training is carried out in nicely lit, air-conditioned rooms while sitting comfortably on soft cushions and listening to qualified lecturers at an ivy-towered university overlooking a quaint village, then I have bad news for you. You’re wrong!

For each apprentice apostle candidate, the Lord has specially designed circumstances which will simulate the treacherous, tough times which awaits the Body sometime in the future. These circumstances come filled to the brim with frustration, stress, and humiliation.

The apostle candidates are sort of like dirty clothes shoved into a gigantic automatic washer, going through one desperate, ruinous cycle after another. The candidates’ heads are held under the water most of the time, with a few short breathing breaks between dunks.

All of this continues until they are finally rinsed and brought out to dry. This may take years, but along the way, many will drop out of the program to sit on the sidelines.

Now, while this divinely orchestrated training is happening, the rest of the Body of Christ looks on and scratches their heads. “What’s wrong with those losers? Why don’t they get with the program? They don’t seem to have a clue about faith,” they murmur to each other.

But when the treacherous, tough times hit a nation, it will be these losers – the apprentice candidates – who will step forth as apostles and confidently proclaim: “I know that our God will bring us through these bad times. Just follow me because I have discovered the correct path for us to walk on.”

(Continued in Part 7…but if you want to read all of the parts to date, you can go here.)

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What’re Your Plans for 300 Years From Now? (Conclusion)

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Jesus used a parable to describe the kingdom of heaven when He told about a businessman traveling to a far country. The businessman called three of his servants and gave some of his goods to do business while he was gone. To the first one, he gave five talents of silver. To the second, two talents of silver. And to the third, one talent of silver.

When the businessman returned from his travels, he called the three servants to give an accounting. The first and second servant doubled the businessman’s investment with their trading.

The businessman said to these two servants, “Well done, good and faithful servants; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you rulers over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.”

The third servant did nothing with the talent of silver given to him and returned it in full to the businessman. “You wicked and lazy servant…” said the businessman to the servant.  “Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has ten talents…And cast this unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

Yikes!

Did Jesus cast the unprofitable servant into Hell for being lazy?

Dr. Spiros Zodhiates in his commentary, The Complete Word Study New Testament, wrote about “the outer darkness” and “weeping and gnashing of teeth”:

These terms may be applied to believers who have failed the Lord in their service…In this instance, the “outer darkness” may be a reference to a place or a position of far less rewards for the servants who proved themselves less diligent than those who used their talents to the fullest.

Kenneth Wuest wrote in his book, Greek New Testament:

This darkness is simply the darkness that is outside the King’s banqueting house.

Charles Stanley wrote in his book, Eternal Security:

The outer darkness here simply refers to being thrown outside of a building into the dark. It is not a description of hell.

Unfaithfulness and failing to run the race of faith all the way to the end of our lives will probably cost us rewards in the world to come.

And have made us kings and priests to our God; and we shall reign on the earth.(Revelation 5:9)

Do you not know that the saints (the believers) will [one day] judge and govern the world? (1 Corinthians 6:2 Amplified Bible)

For He has not put the world to come [Millennial Kingdom], of which we speak, in subjection to angels. (Hebrews 2:5)

What are my plans for 300 years from now?

I’m assuming that Jesus will return and set up His Millenial Kingdom on earth. So, with that in mind, I want to be one of His rulers who reign in partnership with Jesus on earth. Some of us will rule over nations, some over states, some over cities, and some over smaller territories.

There could be millions of positions in His infrastructures all over the earth. My desire is to be the best I can be for His glory.

What about you?

If I would have written 100,000 words on this subject, it still wouldn’t have been enough to cover every topic on this subject.  But it was my hope to at least stir up each reader’s desire to be a faithful servant all the days of his or her life.

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

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Prayers for America (9/11/2018)

 

On September 11, 2001, I was sitting in Jefferson, Iowa. Carol and I were in the process of moving from Virginia Beach to Southern California. As I checked emails, Uncle Phil said, “Larry, look at the television.”

What I saw stunned me: New York’s Twin Towers being hit by two airplanes. Even as I watched I couldn’t grasp what was going on. How could this happen to America? I thought.

The Holy Spirit spoke to my heart later that day: “America is at war!”

After seventeen years, I now realize that the war I thought was just against terrorism and Al-Qaeda is far greater than that. Every part of America is under attack. Our culture. Our political system. Our faith. Our future. Everything.

And sadly, America doesn’t realize who is behind all of this.

For thus says the LORD of hosts: “Once more (it is a little while) I will shake heaven and earth, the sea and dry land; and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this temple with glory,” says the LORD of hosts. (Haggai 2:6)

My prayer today:

Lord, open our eyes and move on our spirits so that we turn to You with all of our hearts, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning. So that we rip our hearts apart in grief for our sins rather than just going through some more religious motions. Help us, O Lord, to return to You, believing You are gracious and merciful, slow to anger and of great understanding, and desire to offer us a reprieve. (Based on Joel 2:12-13)

What do you think and has the Lord spoken to you today?

Join with me to fast and pray for America.

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The Apostles: Men Condemned to Death (Part 3)

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In 2007, I had a weird dream in which I saw a bunch of five bananas. Four of the bananas in the bunch were rotten and one was perfect. End of dream.

I told Carol about the dream, but even with her help, I had no clue what the dream was about. As with all of my dreams, I wrote it down in a notebook so I could review it sometime in the future.

Afterward, I walked into the kitchen to make myself breakfast. I poured cereal into a bowl and grabbed what looked like a perfect banana. As I peeled it, I was surprised to learn the fruit was rotten. Not one portion of it was fit to eat. I tossed it into the trash can.

Next, I grabbed another banana and began peeling it. Surprise! Surprise! It, too, was rotten. Then, I grabbed a third and a fourth one. Nothing was eatable on the rotten bananas. The trash can looked like a compost bin.

Finally, there was only one banana left in the bowl. I picked it up and checked it over. Just like the others, there were no marks on the peel.  It looked perfect from the outside.

What do I have to lose? I thought.

I peeled it. And in fact, it was perfect in every possible way, not one bruise on it.

As I stood there looking at the banana, the Holy Spirit spoke to me heart: “The first four callings have been restored to the Church and are mostly rotten. The fifth calling is now ready. It will be perfect.”

The Holy Spirit was referring to the five-fold callings –

And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers. (Ephesians 4:11)

But even more, I felt the Holy Spirit was especially referring to the end-time apostles when he mentioned the fifth calling’s perfection.

The rottenness of the first four callings – teachers, pastors, evangelists, and prophets – is due mainly to the traditional church system rather than to the personal character traits of the people in these callings.  The traditional church system has shoved these four callings into a box and sculpted each of them by its traditions and hierarchy.

The end-time apostles are not coming to fit into the traditional church system’s mold, but instead, they’re coming with sticks of dynamite to blow it apart.

(Continued in Part 3…but if you want to read all of the parts to date, you can go here.)

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Prayers for America (9/6/2018)

Many believers are praying for America to return to its past glory, but I believe those days are gone. We need to learn how to walk in our now and then into our future. Both are uncharted territories, in which we will need our Good Shepherd to lead us each and every day.

My prayer today:

Lord, help American believers to forget about those things which are behind us, and instead to reach forward to those things which are ahead. So we can press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (Based on Philippians 3:13-14)

What do you think and has the Lord spoken to you today?

Join with me on Thursdays to fast and pray for America.

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What’re Your Plans for 300 Years from Now? (Part 6)

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In the Book of Revelation Chapters 2 and 3, Jesus gives seven promises to believers who overcome, with the greatest promise being:

To him who overcomes, I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. (Revelation 3:21)

Nancy and Chuck Missler wrote about being overcomers in their powerful book – Kingdom, Power & Glory: The Overcomer’s Handbook —

Okay, so why is learning about being a faithful overcomer so important? Why make such a big deal about it?

It’s important because the Bible teaches us that overcomers are the only ones who will inherit the Millennial Kingdom and possibly rule and reign with Christ. Revelation 21:7: “He that overcometh shall inherit all things and I will be his God and he shall be My Son.” Overcomers are the ones who will have various levels of responsibility in the coming kingdom.

What we are saying is that all Christians will enter the Millennial Kingdom, be “with” Christ” and have eternal life (John 14:3; John 3:16). But only the faithful overcomers – the ones who have fulfilled the conditions set down by God in His Word – will inherit and possibly rule in that kingdom.

Some of these conditions are found in Romans 8:17 and 2 Timothy 2:12, which say, if we don’t suffer with Him, we will jeopardize our being able to reign with Him. Matthew 24:45-47 says the if we are not faithful, we could endanger our being made “rulers” over His household. And finally, James 2:5 warns that if we don’t love (agapao) Him, we could forfeit our being heirs of His kingdom. In addition to these scriptures, Ephesians 5:1-5 gives us a list of other things that if we do, we will not inherit.

So, scripturally, there’s a huge difference between simply entering the Millennial Kingdom and being a “subject” there (which all believers will do) and actually inheriting that kingdom and being a “sovereign” there (which only the faithful overcomers will do). All born-again believers will enter, but only the triumphant overcoming Christians will rule and reign. The deciding factor is how we live our lives here and now.

CHARLES STANLEY (Baptist pastor, radio preacher, and author of forty-five books) in his book Eternal Security wrote: “Does our behavior matter once we are assured of our salvation? You bet it does. Are there any eternal consequences when a believer sins? Absolutely. Will eternity be the same for those who follow Christ faithfully and those who live for themselves? Not a chance. Our God is a God of justice as well as a God of grace. His offer of grace is continually extended to even the most vile sinner. But His justice moves Him to keep a careful record of those who remain faithful and those who do not. His grace moved Him to sacrifice His only Son to provide a way for our salvation. But His justice causes him to take special note o those believers who are willing to sacrifice for His Son.

(Excerpt from Chapter 1 of Kingdom, Power & Glory.

What we do 300 years from now depends on our decisions now.

(Continued in Part 7…but if you want to read all of the parts to date, you can go here.)

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What’re Your Plans for 300 Years from Now? (Part 5)

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Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” (Genesis 1:26)

From the beginning, God’s plan was that Adam, and all of mankind after him, would rule and reign on earth. But Adam threw a wrench into God’s plans by sinning and handing over his position of earthly rulership to Satan.

Because of Adam’s sin, all of creation was placed in bondage, subjected to God’s curse. Creation’s only hope was that the sons of God would come forth and take their positions as rulers once again.

Then, in the fullness of time, God sent His Son to redeem mankind at the cross. So, after the Son of God’s death, resurrection, and ascension, there are now sons of God on the earth once again.

But something is missing. What is it?

For He has not put the world to come, of which we speak, in subjection to angels. (Hebrews 2:5)

At creation, God placed mankind under an angelic form of government. His angels were supposed to serve and minister to mankind, but because of Adam’s sin, Satan and his demonic angels became our adversaries. Now, Satan and his demonic horde sit in the governmental positions created by God as principalities, powers, rulers of darkness of this age, and spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places ruling over mankind.

Even though the church has authority to make known the wisdom of God to the demonic governing powers in the heavenly places, we haven’t really walked in that authority as yet. Hopefully, we will soon do that.

But even so, Satan’s angelic government will not be overthrown until after the great tribulation and Jesus returns to earth.

Here’s an important fact to remember: God never rescinded His words about mankind having dominion on earth. Thus, it’s still His plan for us, not under an angelic government, but under the Son of Man – Jesus Christ our Lord and King.

What must we do to prepare ourselves to rule and reign with Christ?

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

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