Even Sodom!

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

"He then began to denounce the cities in which most of His miracles were done, because they did not repent" (Matt. 11:20).

Jesus has a word to say, not only to us as individuals, but to entire cities as well. In anger He rebuked Chorazin, Bethsaida and Capernaum (Matt. 11:21, 23). With tears He wept over Jerusalem (Luke 13:34). If He expected cities to repent in the first century, He expects cities today to repent as well.

It was in this very context of reproving cities, however, that Jesus made a statement which, to me, unveiled the scope of God's redemptive power. Listen to His rebuke, but also to its hidden promise.

When Average Men Follow Christ

By Francis Frangipane

Before we doubt whether we are the caliber of the first disciples, here is a fact sheet compiled from over 200 New Testament Scriptures concerning those whom Jesus first called.

THE DISCIPLES... came to Christ, believed in Him, followed Him.

They...
dined with Him, often became hungry, often didn't have time to eat, twice fed the multitudes.

They...
received special authority to heal and deliver, became Jesus' confidants, were often rebuked and corrected, were entrusted with the mysteries of God's Kingdom.

A Thankful Heart

By Francis Frangipane

A Thankful Man is a Humble ManIf you think you know God but do not live your life in gratitude before Him, it is doubtful that you really knew Him in the first place. A thankful heart honors God. Too often when people say they "know God," what we actually mean is they know facts about God. But we should ask ourselves, "Do I truly know Him?"

Paul warns that just knowing facts about God is not enough to enter eternal life. He wrote,

The Men of Ninevah

By Francis Frangipane

There are many types of fasts. If you have ever gone on an extended fast, you know it can be a life-changing experience. The sinful king of Nineveh along with the nobles and all the people of his nation fasted completely from food and water. The Lord heard the sincerity in their repentance and spared their nation, making them an example of how prayer, coupled with fasting, touched the heart of God (Jonah 3; Luke 11:32).

A fast can be a powerful tool to help stimulate revival or, conversely, it can degrade into a religious exercise that has almost no spiritual significance. The Pharisees fasted twice a week but did so to be seen of men. Their fast became a thing of religious pride. It was completely without spiritual value.

The Day of God's Kingdom

By Francis Frangipane

As we approach the fulfillment of many end-time prophecies, we must not allow ourselves to be moved by fear or unbelief. Increased wars, lawlessness and ethnic conflicts are signs that point to something more significant than themselves. Recall, the Lord’s word, He said, "So you also, when you see these things happening, recognize that the kingdom of God is near" (Luke 21:31).

Indeed, the turbulence we behold in the sea of humanity is caused by a storm in the heavenly places: The Kingdom of Heaven is drawing close! The signs around us are actually the effects of a confrontation between the Kingdom of God and the domain of hell. And while wars and rumors of wars fill the headlines, so there is another people returning to their homeland: the Kingdom of God.

America's Future: Christ or Chaos

By Francis Frangipane

There is a chosen race. However, this race is not born of ethnicity or fleshly pride; its origin is heavenly. It is spiritual and its citizens come from every "tribe and tongue and people and nation" --- individuals who have been purchased by the blood of Christ (Rev. 5:9). Their homeland is Heaven, and in their love for each other, they display Christ as God's answer for ethnic strife and conflicts.

Exodus of the Gentiles
While the return of the Jews to Israel is last century's most remarkable exodus, it is not the only restoration of ethnic peoples in recent years. Indeed, Israel's restoration is but one of scores of cultures resurfacing in today's world, each seeking to be defined by the best aspects of its heritage.

Casting Down the Accuser of the Brethren

By Francis Frangipane

"Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, who accuses them before our God day and night" (Rev. 12:10).

There will be an actual point in time when the salvation, power and kingdom of God, as well as the authority of Christ, is manifested in the earth. While we wait patiently for the final fulfillment of that glorious event at the return of Jesus Christ, the spirit of this reality can be possessed any time a people determine to walk free of criticism and faultfinding, and turn their sights toward love and prayer for each other.

"For Dreams to Come True"

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

In a dream I saw a temple standing in an open field. My view of the temple was from its side, about two hundred yards away. I could not see its front, yet it must have been completely open because great light flashed out from the inside. It pulsed like lightning yet was solid like sunlight. I knew this light was the glory of God.

The temple was so close that I knew with just a little effort I actually could enter the glory of God. His holy presence was clearly within my reach. There were also others directly in front of me whom I recognized as people from church. And while the temple and its light were visible and readily accessible to all, every head was bent downward and turned away from the light; each was occupied with other things.

The Real Jesus

By Francis Frangipane

A Storm, a Ghost or Jesus?
Get used to the idea that among all the blessings you have received from God, the real Jesus is also the “author and perfecter of [our] faith” (Heb. 12:2). In that regard, sooner or later the Lord will require you to look straight in the eye of the impossible and believe God for His power.

Consider the occasion when Jesus sent His disciples ahead of Him to the other side of the Sea of Galilee. Later that night, Jesus comes to them walking on water (see Matt. 14:22-33). Contrary winds are churning the sea with turbulent swells. Of course, Jesus could have waited for a calm day to walk on water. Or He simply could have arrived at the other side of the sea supernaturally. No, the Lord comes to the disciples with something in mind; He comes to them as the perfecter of their faith.

The Power of Holiness

By Francis Frangipane

"This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall have a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof" (2 Tim. 3:1-5 KJV).

Holiness is powerful. Have you ever met a truly holy man or woman? There is a power in their godliness. If, however, one has never known a Christlike soul, it becomes relatively easy to fake Christianity. The fact is that being false is natural to the human heart. Jeremiah wrote that the heart is deceitful above all else." It is with much effort that we become true. Unless we are reaching for spiritual maturity, our immaturity shapes our perceptions of God. We point to the Almighty and say, "He stopped requiring righteousness," when in reality, we have compromised the standards of His kingdom. Indeed, the moment we stop obeying God, at that moment we started faking Christianity.
You see, true Christianity is an unfolding experience with Jesus Christ. It starts with spiritual rebirth and faith in Christ, but it continues into Christ's own holiness, power and love.

The Goal Is to See Clearly

By Francis Frangipane

The judgmental, carnal mind sees the image of itself in others. Without realizing it is seeing itself, it assumes it is perceiving others. Jesus refers to the person who judges others as a "hypocrite." However, the Lord is not saying we should totally stop thinking about people all together. He wants us to be able to help one another. The emphasis in Jesus’ command to "judge not" is summarized in His concluding remark: "First take the log out of your own eye, and THEN you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye." The way we help is not by judging, but by seeing clearly. And we do not see clearly until our instinct to judge after the flesh is uprooted!

Adapted from Francis Frangipane's books, The Three Battlegrounds and Spiritual Discernment and the Mind of Christ available at www.arrowbookstore.com.

The Silent Harvest

By Francis Frangipane

In a dream I found myself inside the mind of a dying man. The man had been in a coma for some time; his family had been praying, but they did not know whether or not he had accepted Christ. All they were sure of is that, throughout his life, he had resisted their efforts to lead him to Christ.

As I dreamt I became so acutely aware of the man's state of mind that his thoughts, feelings and struggles almost seemed my own. Although his eyes were nearly closed and his vision clouded, he could see his loved ones at his bedside. I watched as he tried to reach toward his family, but outwardly his arm never lifted. I heard him speak their names, but no sound whispered through his lips. A loved one holding his hand asked, "If you hear me, squeeze." He heard and pressed his fingers against hers, but no movement was seen; his hand clearly remained limp. He was conscious; he could hear their prayers; he felt the warmth of their kisses on his face yet was perfectly incapable of responding.

Truth Is a Person

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

As we have often stated, our destiny is, first of all, to attain the likeness of Christ. We will fall short along the way; we will have much to learn, relearn and unlearn; we will face many obstacles, but our life vision must not deviate from this goal.

Along the way, there will also be false teachers and ministers. How can we discern the true from the false? In answer to this important question, the Bible itself provides a number of fundamental tests to authenticate the soundness of one’s doctrines. One test in particular comes from the apostle Paul. He writes,

Love Me Where You're At

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

I have discovered that, as we seek the Lord, our most difficult periods can be transformed into wonderful breakthroughs into God's love. For me one such season occurred during the years 1979 to1981. The association of churches with which I was aligned had fallen under spiritual deception. Not only were its core doctrines increasingly seeded with New Age influences, but also immorality crept in, and key leaders began leaving their wives for other women. I could no longer remain silent. As a result, in 1979 I left my congregation in Detroit, Michigan, where I had served as pastor, and traveled to the organization's regional headquarters in Iowa. I came to plead for repentance. However, after meeting with the senior leaders, I was asked to leave the group.

One of You Is a Gossip

By Francis Frangipane

A perverse man spreads strife, and a slanderer separates intimate friends. ---Proverbs 16:28

Jesus made a remarkable statement concerning Judas. He said, "‘Did I Myself not choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?’ Now He meant Judas the son of Simon Iscariot, for he, one of the twelve, was going to betray Him" (John 6:70-71).

To what was Jesus referring when He identified Judas as "a devil"? Was He speaking figuratively or factually? Is Jesus saying that a human being could not only host an evil spirit in his soul, but that a person could actually become a demon?

The Prayer Womb

By Francis Frangipane

When we picture a prayer warrior, we usually see a great-aunt or grandmother. I think that every family has one. You never find them looking into a crystal ball to know the future for little Johnny---they are at the throne of God creating Johnny's future in prayer. They are not wondering if Mary is going to make it; they are praying her through to victory. They do not have time to lament Harry's drinking problem; they are storming heaven to see him delivered.

Prayer warriors are the most frightening, powerful, demon-chasing, world-moving beings on earth. In truth, they act like children of God! If they were to gaze at a crystal ball, it would explode! They look at astrological predictions and rebuke them. They never wonder about the future because they are too busy creating it through their faith in God.

Ask of Me

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español) 

The Great Revolt
As though Jesus were reading a news summary of recent years, His prophecies of two thousand years ago clearly describe our times. Thus, we are compelled to discern accurately the significant era in which we live. Indeed, of the many prophetic fulfillments of our day, one in particular rises with undimmed candor. I am speaking of what the Bible calls the "apostasy." Recall Paul's warning:

"Let no one in any way deceive you, for [the day of the Lord] will not come unless the apostasy comes first" (2 Thess. 2:3).

The apostasy has traditionally been described as a time of deception and massive falling away from authentic faith in Christ. Depending upon your specific view, sometime before or after the apostasy the rapture of the church will occur. However, the concept of apostasy as merely "a falling away" is incomplete. The original Greek word for apostasy, apostasia, when used in classical Greek literature, meant "a political revolt." From this we understand that the end-time apostasy is not just a time of sinfulness or large scale backsliding; it is actually a time of open defiance and warlike aggression against godliness in general. In other words, the apostasia is a political insurrection against the laws of God.

What Are You Becoming?

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

It is insightful to me that when Luke listed the twelve apostles, when he came to Judas Iscariot, he identified him as the apostle "who became a traitor" (Luke 6:16).

Let me start with a question, a sincere question that may be the most important question you can ask yourself: What are you becoming? Judas Iscariot was an apostle "who became a traitor." This was a man who had been used mightily by the Lord to "heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers [and] cast out demons" (Matt. 10:8). Judas knew the excitement, joy and power of personally walking with Jesus. He saw miracles, signs and wonders.

When the Crop Permits

By Francis Frangipane
From the ICIT Christlikeness track
(En Español)

Certainly, the period prior to Christ's return will be both difficult and perilous. Scripture warns that God's voice will shake all things, things in the heavens and things on the earth. Everything that can be shaken will be shaken, and then removed (Heb. 12:26-27).

Yet there is more on the calendar of God than increasing judgments and the Rapture. Between now and the Second Coming, there will also be a significant, though still partial, re-establishing of God's kingdom in the earth (Dan. 2:44; Matt. 24:14; Matt. 13). A spiritually mature people will serve as the vanguard of His return. Before the Lord is glorified in the earth, He shall be glorified in the church (Isa. 60:1-3; Eph. 5:27). Indeed, the attainment of Christlike maturity in those who pursue the Lord shall not be a mere sidebar on the list of end-time events; it will be a significant fulfillment.

The Lord of Armies, Part 2

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

We have been discussing the nature of Christ. From our study, we  learned that the "compound name" used most frequently in the Bible is "Lord of Hosts." This name appears nearly ten times the sum of all the other compound names in the Scriptures (see last week's msg).

Hosts, by the way, are not people who invite you to a party; hosts are armies. The Lord is Lord of armies, units that come against the gates of hell, and the gates of hell cannot withstand them. Every church is an outpost on assignment in a war. Of course, there is love and grace in each church, but there should also be a war mode -- and strategies that have come from Heaven to advance against the darkness of its time and place.