Hastened in Its Time

By Francis Frangipane

There isn't one church leader I know who does not believe we are living in the end times.   Exactly where we are along heaven's prophetic time line is debatable, yet everyone has his or her own catalog of confirming end time signs. If it is true that we have, perhaps, less than a generation before the end of the age, we should expect is to see a divine hastening of spiritual realities.

Indeed, this ministry often quotes Isaiah 60:1-3 concerning the manifestation of the Lord's glory in the end time church.  Yet, Isaiah's revelation concludes with this added encouragement: "I, the Lord, will hasten it in its time" (vs 22).   Let's personalize this hastening: our maturing and transformation will be accelerated in the days ahead!

Consider also Paul's word: "For the Lord will execute His word upon the earth, thoroughly and quickly" (Rom 9:28).  There is no reason the Lord cannot do things quicker should He choose to: He created the universe in seven days!  I love that the end times are not just about God moving quickly, but also about Him accomplishing a deep and thorough work in us.  Indeed, if we want the quick, we must focus on the thorough.  Yet, His promise is for both a quick and thorough work!

On the Road to Damascus

By Francis Frangipane

"Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains by itself alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit" (Jn 12:24-25).

There is a profound truth about spiritual growth hidden in Jesus' remarks.  He likens our growth to the same pattern seen in a life cycle of a seed.  There are two aspects to the seed: a husk and its kernel.  The husk is the harder, outer covering that protects the tender, inner kernel. Of course, it is the kernel, not the husk, which contains the power to bear fruit and reproduce.

However, once the seed is planted in soil and watered, the outer husk must break. Its completeness and usefulness "dies." Without the death of the husk, the seed will never produce fruit and will abide by itself alone, just as Jesus said.

A Child in the Womb of God

By Francis Frangipane

The true church is a child in the womb of God; what the Almighty feels affects us.  We absorb into our spiritual DNA the great loves of God; His compassion becomes our compassion. However, what God hates we must not be afraid to also hate, for our thoughts and attitudes must exist in yielded surrender to His own. 

I am thinking of Ezekiel.  As the Lord showed the prophet Israel's sins, six men appeared, one of whom was told "Go through the midst of the city . . . and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations which are being committed in its midst" (Ezek 9:4).  It was important to the Lord to identify those who were united to His heart, who cared more about what He thought than finding acceptance in a godless world around them. 

The Pathway to Power

By Francis Frangipane

A new awakening is coming to the church. It will be birthed by prayer and sheltered by humility, but its power will emerge through compassion.  The strength of this fresh move is the deep yearning of the Lord Himself. Yes, even in the midst of hellish conditions on earth He has promised, "I WILL HAVE MERCY ON WHOM I HAVE MERCY, AND I WILL HAVE COMPASSION ON WHOM I HAVE COMPASSION" (Rom. 9:15).

Common people, flooded and compelled by the burning compassions of God, shall be used mightily in the coming years: they shall transform multitudes. Christ's compassions shall be especially revealed where human suffering is unrelenting.  Let us remember, the Lord is not aloof from the human condition; mankind's suffering exists in the thought-life of God.  The book of   Judges reveals an amazing quality about the relationship of God's heart to human sorrow.  Scripture says, "He could bear the misery of Israel no longer" (Judges 10:16).  As a result, He rescued His people from their enemies.

The Power of Impartation

By Francis Frangipane

I know a man who, as a young teenager, endured a violent outburst from his father. The incident had to do with a style of shirt that other teens were wearing. First, his dad told him not to buy the shirt and then, after the young man showed up wearing it anyway, his father told him to take it off. When the boy resisted his dad exploded, actually ripping the shirt while it was still on the young man's body.

For whatever damage the violence did to the young man's psyche, there was a deeper side effect. Later in life, my friend married and had his own children. As life would have it, his oldest son wanted to wear a certain "hip-hopper" shirt, to which my friend objected.  Later that day his son tried to sneak out of the house wearing the shirt but was caught.  Just as his dad before him had done, my friend exploded and, while the shirt was still on his son, he ripped it in several places.

When God Responds To Israel's Repentance

By Francis Frangipane

For the most part, I've been silent and simply prayerful concerning Israel, the "Road Map" and the future.  Now, however, as terrorism and reprisals again escalate, let me offer some thoughts.

First, both the Old Testament and New Testament reveal that God's purposes are irrevocably intertwined with the return and restoration of Israel (Ezek. 37-39; Rev 7).  For those who believe the church has replaced Israel, the Bible tells us that the Jews are God's covenant people, and that as long as the sun, moon and stars exist, the Lord's covenant with Israel shall stand (Jer. 31:35-36).  Of course, through Jesus Christ, Christians receive a better covenant with better promises, but God has not broken His covenant with Israel.  Nothing will thwart the promises of God, as centuries of persecution, Hitler's ovens and, in time, Muslim terrorists will all testify before God in eternity.  Be assured, Israel's full restoration will come to pass in its time.

The Wings of an Eagle

By Francis Frangipane

We recently discussed a potential wounding that may strike America in the coming months. Whether it is something from hell that God allows or something that actually comes from His hand, the Lord will use this to help purify America's soul.  I do not see the USA being destroyed, crushed or even marginalized; the chastening, if needed, I believe will bring this nation into its highest spiritual destiny.  Whatever the conflict, its effect will help break the bonds of uncleanness from the land. 

If there is a wounding, remember His hands also heal.  Recall Jesus' statement to Peter, that Satan had demanded permission to sift Peter (and the disciples) like wheat.  There were "two Peters" fighting for dominance in the apostle's life: a superficial, ambitious chaff nature and a deeper "wheat" nature.  America is much like Peter: strong, self-confident and carnal. The Lord had to break Peter's self-will in order to unleash the spiritual side of the apostle. 

Love Powered Prayer

By Francis Frangipane

Love is the fire behind all intercession.  To perfect love, God unites us to other people; to empower prayer, He allows us to be vicariously identified with the sufferings of those we care for.  As it is written, "If one member suffers, all the members suffer with it" (1 Cor. 12:26).

If we cease to love, we will fail to pray.

Are you weary or vacillating in your prayer life? Return to the love God first gave you, whether that love was for your family or church, city or nation. Love will identify you with those you pray for; it will revive your intercession, and prayer empowered by love will "never fail.

What Will You Give in Exchange For Your Soul?

By Francis Frangipane

"In the last days, perilous times shall come" (2 Tim. 3:1).

When Paul writes that, "perilous times shall come," with holy fear we ought to consider his words. Indeed, we might expect the apostle's warning about the last days would focus upon coming persecutions or specifics concerning the Great Tribulation. But what Paul actually describes as "perilous" is a world full of obsessive self-fulfillment and readily attainable, and almost unbridled, opportunities for pleasure.

Consider well his warning.  For his spiritual analysis reads like the advertisement section of a local newspaper. He continues,

"For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God" (2 Tim 3:2-4).

The Father's Family of Nations

By Francis Frangipane

People who study prophetic signs have repeatedly warned us the "end of the world" is at hand.   Indeed, we are inundated with books, movies and sermons, each proclaiming in their own way the end is near.  While I agree that we are certainly in the season of great, end-time prophetic fulfillment, can we press "pause" for a moment on some of our darker apocalyptic expectations?  The Spirit of God is doing something worldwide, and we should unite our hearts in faith and prayer for the Lord's amazing purpose.  The Holy Spirit is being poured out upon the nations.

Nations Shall Come To Our Light

By Francis Frangipane

Many thanks for the hundreds of encouraging responses to our message about America and Israel. Each of you who wrote greatly encouraged me. I would urge you, even as you pray for many other nations, and Iraq in particular, that you continue to pray for God’s best for the USA and Israel. Although the proposal (or road map) for a Palestinian State isn’t even to take effect until 2005, and the US government is not approaching Israel with a mandate, but with suggestions, let us pray for wisdom and humility for all. I believe the Lord will provide an answer that will secure Israel’s borders and homeland, while also providing for the Palestinian peoples. Remember, with God, all things are possible.

As I predicted, a small handful of zealous Christians have taken what I wrote about Israel and the US and, sadly, completely misunderstood it. In their fears, they sent a very skewed analysis of my message to their constituencies, sowing a lot of unnecessary division. You know that I never mention the names of people who slander or twist what I say, but if you are confused by the remarks of Mr. A.B., please understand that, in his legitimate zeal for Israel, he has misunderstood both my words and intentions. Before the Lord I have forgiven him, and I urge those of you who have read his words to forgive him as well. The last thing we want is a division among those of us who love Israel and are praying for her destiny.

USA, Israel and Jerusalem

by Francis Frangipane

I was sitting in the Cleveland airport when an angry businessman, about 14 feet from me, suddenly said, "I hate going through security. They searched everything. I even had to take off my shoes. It’s all because of the Arabs." He continued speaking, but his language and solution to terrorist problems are not fit to print.

We continued talking and, when our flight was called, we walked together toward the plane. Switching from terrorism, he now had very harsh words about the Pope. As we boarded, I suggested we sit together and continue the conversation. However, the seating configuration didn’t permit an easy switch, so instead of talking with him, I prayed. As I did, I felt like the Lord showed me this man’s heart. He wasn’t just angry, he was deeply wounded. His profanity and outrage were his means of dealing with injustice.

Beware of the Spirit of Strife

By Francis Frangipane

One does not have to do an exhaustive search to become aware of the spirit of strife that is rampant in our world. Whether we look at the strife between Iraq and the U.S. or look at the conflicts between Israel and the Arab world, our world is churning with strife. Consider the ranting of North Korea or the unrest in South America, Columbia, Bolivia, Argentina and Venezuela. Not since WW2 has Europe been more deeply divided: Germany, France, Belgium and Russia on one side and England, Spain, Italy and the Balkans on the other. Pakistan and India are ready to duel to the nuclear death. There are terror uprisings, civil wars and rebellion in the Philippines, Chechen, North and Central Africa, and many other places. Our world is just as Jesus forewarned, "nation [has risen] against nation, and kingdom against kingdom" (Matt. 24:7).

Yet we need not be familiar with world events to be personally affected with this invasion of strife. The church itself has had so much conflict that many now identify the ability to create division as a courageous and honorable virtue. Even the home is not safe, as we see divorce rates in the Western World have skyrocketed over the past 40 years. And who is unfamiliar with the phenomenal breakdown of families?

The Secret to National Prosperity

By Francis Frangipane

For whatever ungodly conditions remain in the U.S., there are two biblical mandates America does obey that are fundamental to its economy and prosperity. I refer to them as "secrets" because, as Christians, we often speak of our nation as though it was completely without virtue.

I personally have felt the Lord's displeasure whenever I murmur or complain. After I repent for ingratitude, it is amazing how I am lifted above my circumstances; they are not as dark as they first appeared. Indeed, I actually can see what God is doing when I begin my intercession with thanksgiving.

So, even as we mourn for America's sins, we must also remain thankful to God for its virtues. It is not enough that we doctrinally know the truth of God if our attitudes contradict that knowledge. Thus, Paul warns,

"For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God, or give thanks; but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened."
-Rom 1:21

The Beloved

By Francis Frangipane

We have been talking about prayer, Christlikeness, and the future of America. I would like to continue that focus, but look at the manifestation of Christ on earth as it impacts the Father. There is something utterly pleasing to the Father when Christ is revealed. It actually goes far beyond not destroying the wicked; it touches His heart in the depths of His nature.

Thus, to satisfy God, we must perceive what the Son presents to the Father in terms of their relationship. Let us, therefore, consider first the weightiness of having Jesus Christ as our mediator with God.

Jesus says that the Father has loved Him from "before the foundation of the world" (John 17:24). The love that exists between the Father and the Son transcends the boundaries of time. Before the ages began or the stars were young; before the earth, man or angels were created, the Father and Son have known only love. Their union within the Trinity is so complete that, though they are two distinct personalities, the Scripture can state with perfect fidelity: "The Lord our God is one God."

Is the United States in the Bible?

By Francis Frangipane

So, if the Lord's immediate plans are not to destroy America, then what is in God's heart for this nation? Is there anything in the Scriptures about the United States upon which our faith can rest? The Bible has a number of general promises that we can apply to our land. These, though they lack clear or specific references to the United States, still supply a foundation for our faith. Isaiah 60:1-3 is such a text. It reads:

Arise, shine; for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. For behold, darkness will cover the earth, and deep darkness the peoples; but the Lord will rise upon you, and His glory will appear upon you. And nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.

Think of it! Nations and kings will come to the glory of Christ arising in the church! Regardless of where on earth you currently live or how dark the world is around you, this text is a living promise to all who pray for their nation!

Indwelt By God

By Francis Frangipane

Do we understand what it means to be blessed? Perhaps we are more familiar with what it means to be cursed. The Bible definition of a curse meant "to be bound with a spell," "hemmed in by obstacles," or "rendered powerless to resist."

I think many Christians are fighting the effects of curses against their lives. Even though they may not identify as a curse the resistance or heaviness that they frequently feel, they are aware that something is working against them.

Some curses are generational in nature. The Scriptures warn that the sins of the fathers will be passed to "the children, and on the third and the fourth generations" (Deut. 5:9). There are character traits, sinful attitudes and cultural prejudices that can be inherited from our parents.

He Who Has Clean Hands

By Francis Frangipane

It's time to examine what flows out of our hands in ministry.

The call was from a pastor I'd known for years. I had always appreciated his heart. Every Sunday during communion he would pray and gently lay his hands on each person's head. Now, however, his voice was troubled. He asked if we could meet at his church and I agreed.

As we sat in his office he confessed, "I started smoking. No one knows, not even my wife. I only smoke when I'm by myself in the car."

"Well, I've heard worse things," I answered, relieved that he wasn't confessing a real sin."

He continued. "I know smoking is wrong, but that's not what's troubling me. Within three weeks after I lit my first cigarette, I was approached on four separate occasions by different people I had prayed for. It was incredible--each person privately confessed they had suddenly developed a craving for cigarettes! As I laid my hands upon them to bless them, I had also been imparting to them my sin."

God Talking to God

By Francis Frangipane

We have been studying the influence that one mercy-motivated intercessor can have upon the heart of God. In this, we looked at Abraham and then expanded our study to Moses. The Lord heard the intercession of Moses as he stood between divine judgment and Israel's sin, and he stayed in the place of intercession until God's Word concerning Israel came to pass.

The cycle of Israel's sin and God's justice repeated itself time and again. In essence, it was always the same: Israel rebelled; God threatened destruction; Moses interceded; God forgave.

Exposing the Accuser of the Brethren

By Francis Frangipane

More churches have been destroyed by the accuser of the brethren and its faultfinding than by either immorality or misuse of church funds. So prevalent is this influence in our society that, among many, faultfinding has been elevated to the status of a "ministry"! The Lord has promised, however, that in His house accusing one another will be replaced with prayer, and faultfinding with a love that covers a multitude of sins.

Satan Wants To Stop Your Growth
This chapter is written specifically to expose the activity of the accuser of the brethren among born-again Christians. There are individuals who are trapped in cults where mind-control and deception are involved; we are not dealing with the uniqueness of their problems in this study. Rather, our goal is to see the Living Church delivered from the stronghold of faultfinding, and to have our hearts turned instead to prayer.

Discerning the Jezebel Spirit

 By Francis Frangipane

We are going to confront a stronghold of immense proportions. It is a way of thinking that exists unchecked in most churches. We are going to expose, and then destroy, the hiding places of Jezebel.

Understanding The Spirit Of Jezebel
"But I have this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, and she teaches and leads My bond-servants astray, so that they commit acts of immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols'' (Rev 2:20). You may challenge my using the above quote and addressing it to American churches. You may argue that not one of the pastors you know has anyone who openly instructs people to commit acts of immorality. I understand your sense of alarm. I agree that you probably know of no one who brazenly preaches that sexual lust and idolatry are not sins. When we speak of Jezebel, we are identifying the source in our society of obsessive sensuality, unbridled witchcraft and hatred for male authority.

Coming of Age

By Francis Frangipane

The devil is trying to concentrate his efforts to bring [America] down morally, spiritually. Because he knows if he brings America down, there is probably no other nation in the world that will stand in his way. America is a main deterrent force against evil powers in the world today.      -Dr. Thomas Wang (AD 2000 and Beyond)

As an atheistic state, Russia's official stand was that there was no deity. God was a myth. Stalin taught that religion was merely the "opiate of the people." In fact, the Soviet communists mocked the reality of God. Their first cosmonauts bragged that they had flown to "heaven" and found no God there. Two generations of Russians were taught on every level of academia that God simply did not exist. The lie, "there is no God," saturated their society. Then the Lord spoke: There is no Soviet Union. Almost instantly the USSR vanished.

America's Unfinished Task

By Francis Frangipane

The awesome solemnity of the role of the USA in the post-"cold war" world is only now beginning to dawn on many. -Patrick Johnstone

To perceive America's future, we must appreciate its past. Without stepping into pride or blind nationalism, we need to esteem how God has used the United States, especially since the 1940s. Indeed, just as the Lord commanded Israel to recall their blessings and honor Him for their victories so, with humility, we should call to mind God's mighty hand upon this nation.

Let us not forget how, during World War II, the Almighty empowered the U.S. to defeat Nazism and Japanese imperialism. Then, for the next forty-five years, the Lord manifested His resolve to arrest the advance of Soviet communism, ultimately using the spiritual, economic and military strength of America to topple this stronghold of atheism.

A World Without America

By Francis Frangipane

Recently, a number of respected church leaders, frustrated with America's slow turn to repentance, have proclaimed that divine wrath is coming to our land. "If God does not destroy America," one influential pastor wrote, "He will have to repent to Sodom and Gomorrah."

Certainly, there are many things morally wrong with America, but America is not Sodom or Gomorrah. Neither is it a re-emergence of the spirit of ancient Babylon. You will not find charged against this land the "blood of prophets and of saints and of all who have been slain on the earth" (Rev 18:24). The spiritual influence of these archetypes is here, just as they are also manifested throughout the world, but America is much more than the sum of its sins and failures.

America does not answer to any singular prophetic profile. It is not the Promised Land, but it is a land of promise. For those who predict the decline and fall of this nation, I'm sorry to disappoint you: America has only just begun to rise. Indeed, as we enter the 21st century, I believe we will find this nation, imperfect as it is, increasing its global influence.

A World in Revival and Harvest

By Francis Frangipane

We began this book by asking you to consider what the civilized world would be like without the United States. Now, I'm going to ask you to consider a world with America in revival. I do not mean a revival merely of emotional religion, but a deep revival, born of genuine Christlikeness in the church. Picture America experiencing a Christ awakening, where a priesthood of mature believers join the Lamb before the throne of God's grace; where the Lamb is offered as sacrifice for America's sin, God receives the sacrifice and, according to 2 Chronicles 7:14, He heals our land.

Picture a repentant America touching Islamic, Hindu and Buddhist peoples with the love of Jesus. Picture a holy America where our movies have moral, Christ-inspired lessons and where the message of redemption is played out in a myriad of ways around the world. Envision a million praying, loving missionaries, empowered by the Holy Spirit to heal and encourage nations on every level of society.

Pardon for an Unrepentant People

By Francis Frangipane

According to Your Word
Moses sent twelve spies to Canaan to bring back a report of the land. When they returned, ten said that, though the land was good, Israel would surely be defeated by the inhabitants. Although Joshua and Caleb argued that Israel certainly could drive out their enemies, the people moaned, complained, and rebelled, even seeking to stone Joshua and Caleb and return with new leaders to Egypt. And again, the anger of the Lord was kindled against them and threatened to bring judgment (see Num 12-14).

Faithfully, once more Moses intercedes.

"I pray, let the power of the Lord be great, just as Thou hast declared. The Lord is slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generations." -Num 14:17-18

Satan's Hour

By Francis Frangipane

There is no greater opportunity to become Christlike than in the midst of pain and injustice. When Satan is raging with evil, God is planning to turn it to good. If we maintain our integrity in battle; if we let love rise to its purest expression, we will touch the heart of God. Such is the path to God's power.

I have set my heart to eliminate many of the vulnerabilities to, and effects of, church splits and other ungodly divisions. At the same time, I realize that we can do almost everything right as pastors and churches and still suffer divisions. For some of us, this may actually be part of God's greater plan for our lives--that we should endure rejection, conflict and slander as part of the process of truly becoming Christlike.

Cleansing Our Tongues form the Accuser's Influence

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).

We discussed last week that, while there will be an actual time when the salvation, power and kingdom of God are fully manifested when Christ returns, any time the accusing voice of Satan is exposed and renounced, we can possess a partial fulfilment of that future reality today!

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.

There are God-ordained procedures to initiate correction within a church. These corrections should be done by "you who are spiritual . . . in a spirit of gentleness . . . looking to yourself, lest you too be tempted." Your motive should not be to destroy, but to "restore such a one" (Gal. 6:1). Accusations against an elder, though, should not even be received except on the basis of two or three witnesses (1 Tim. 5:19). The "witnesses" spoken of here are eye -witnesses, not the intuitive "witness" or "sense" someone receives apart from hard and visible facts. All too often, these sense "witnesses" are sent by hell to destroy the harmony of a church with rumors and gossip.