"One Message"

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

"The Lord alone will be exalted in that day." - Isaiah 2:11

Normally my Sunday sermon is prepared a few days in advance, but this week was different. All week the heavens seemed like bronze. Saturday morning came, and still I was at a loss. Nothing seemed alive. It was now Saturday evening and I was pacing the floor seeking God. "Lord," I asked, "What is the message for tomorrow morning? What topic should I address?"

A dozen ideas filed through my mind, loitered momentarily in my imagination, and left as unanointed as they had arrived. I went to bed praying. When I woke Sunday morning, my prayer was still on my lips.

The Morning Star

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

The day of the Lord, like the dawning of any calendar day, does not burst forth abruptly. It is not pitch black at 5:59 a.m. and then, suddenly, bright morning the next minute. The night sky gradually recedes, retreating from the approaching rays of light. Even before the dawn breaks, the morning star faithfully heralds the coming day, announcing to the world still in darkness that light is at hand.

Some may ask, doesn't the Bible warn that the day of the Lord would come as a "thief in the night"? Yes, but His coming as a thief is only to the backslidden and sinner. Paul says, "But you, brethren, are not in darkness, that the day would overtake you like a thief; for you are all sons of light and sons of day. We are not of night nor of darkness" (1 Thess 5:4-5).

The Coming Baptism of Light

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

As Christians we tend to come from unique schools of thought concerning the end times. Some believe the Rapture could occur at any moment; others see the church going through some if not all of the tribulation. Still others are trusting that, whenever the Rapture occurs, they will be prepared.

The Bible itself focuses on dark and foreboding events occurring during the last hours of the age. I do not want to minimize that focus, for it is real. Yet there is more on God's calendar that the Rapture or tribulation. I believe there will be a baptism of light for those who truly follow Christ.

Removing the Burden of Regret

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

"Why did I disobey the Lord?"

"If only I had kept my mouth shut."

"If only such and such hadn't happened, my life would be so much better."

Regret. Nothing so chains us to our past failures like regret. I know too many Christians who were running well yet at some point fell into sin. The worst thing is they knew better. They were not ignorant of Satan's devices yet they fell. The outcome of their failure was that in the very place where their joy once shone brightly now a wearisome oppression exists. This oppression looks like an aspect of repentance, but it is not. It is demonic. It is a vision-stealer forged in the fires of hell.

On Earth as It Is in Heaven!

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

We recite it in private and pray it in unison; we have even sung it in reverence on select Sunday mornings. It's been a familiar prayer at somber cultural events. Yet I wonder if we really grasp what was in Jesus' heart when He taught His disciples the Lord's Prayer.

The disciples asked Him, "Lord, teach us to pray" (Luke 11:1). In response, the Lord gave them a prayer, not just to help them cope but something that was militant in nature. This was more than a prayer -- it was a proclamation.

For centuries the holy realities of the Lord's Prayer have been obscured by traditions of religious unbelief, as though ritualistic repetition of this prayer would accumulate a special blessing in the afterlife. The deception was that all Jesus was speaking of existed off in eternity, as though this prayer was disbarred from affecting conditions on earth now. In recent years, however, truth is again filling the words of this heavenly anthem, so that "Thy kingdom come! Thy will be done" is freighted with meaning and action.

Unwavering Perseverance

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

If we are to succeed spiritually, among all the other necessary virtues we especially will need perseverance. We will need to learn not only how to fight but how to keep going in the fight until God brings the breakthrough. I am not talking about becoming carnal in our warfare or fleshly in our aggression. I am speaking about a combination of discernment, authority and unwavering faith that needs to live within us, even while other virtues and gifts develop.

It is not enough, you see, to know about God's Kingdom -- we are called to possess it. Yes, when we are born again, we are born into God's Kingdom. But the reality of being born of the Spirit means that a whole new realm of possibilities, challenges and obstacles now unfolds before us. In other words, we must overcome many things in order to function as sons and daughters of God. The idea that the only relationship we have with Heaven is the one we experience at death is simply contrary to the Word of God.