The Silent Harvest

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

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.

The Nearness of Our God

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

In the 73rd Psalm, the psalmist Asaph expressed a struggle we all might feel at times. He questioned why the wicked seem to prosper while the righteous are chastened. The whole idea was troublesome until he entered the sanctuary of God. Once in the presence of God, Asaph realized his error. As he compared himself to the unbeliever, he saw that, apart from the influence of God, he had nothing in which to boast. He said, "When my heart was embittered and I was pierced within, then I was senseless and ignorant; I was like a beast before You" (vv. 21-22).

Finally his soul brightened as he considered that God alone was his salvation, and his relationship with God was his strength. He wrote, "Nevertheless I am continually with You. . . .  You will guide me, and afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but You? And besides You, I desire nothing on earth. . . . God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever" (vv. 23-26).

To Behold the Face of God

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

Have you not deeply desired to see God, to know Him intimately and truly? Beloved, to see Jesus is to behold God. Let us not consider it heresy: we can surely see God! But first we must renounce every perception of the Almighty other than what we have found proven true in Christ.

Therefore study the life, the teachings, and deeds of Jesus Christ, and you will remove the veil of mystery surrounding the nature of God.

Jesus said, "He who has seen Me has seen the Father" (John 14:9).

"Tell Francis I Miss Him"

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

If Satan cannot distract you with worldliness, He will overwhelm you with weariness. Indeed, how easy it is to wear ourselves out; even good works done without recharging ourselves in God can drain us of life and energy. Daniel speaks of a time at the end of the age when the enemy will attempt to "wear down the saints of the Highest One" (Dan. 7:25). God never intended for us to do His will without His presence. The power to accomplish God's purpose comes from prayer and intimacy with Christ. It is here, closed in with God, where we find an ever-replenishing flow of spiritual virtue.

Weary in Well-Doing
In the early 1970s, during the beginning of my ministry, the Lord called me to consecrate to Him the time from dawn until noon. I spent these hours in prayer, worship, and the study of His Word. I would often worship God for hours, writing songs to Him that came from this wonderful sanctuary of love. The presence of the Lord was my delight, and I know my time with Him was not only well spent but also well pleasing to us both.

"This Time I Will Praise the Lord"

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

We cannot pass through life without getting hurt. Pain and disappointment in this world are inevitable. How we handle our setbacks, though, shapes our character and prepares us for eternity. Our attitude is the pivotal factor determining the level of our protection from strife. Regardless of the hardships we have faced, and in spite of the mistakes we have made, the end of our lives can either be full of praise and thanksgiving or full of misery and complaint. In the final analysis, what we have experienced in life will be as rich as the desires we have had fulfilled or as painful as the things we regret.

The Bible tells us, "Hope deferred makes the heart sick" (Prov. 13:12). Deep disappointments in life have a way of never leaving us; they enter our hearts like fire and then harden into our nature like lava. Setbacks can leave us cautious about new ventures and suspicious of new friends.

Follow Your Hunger

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

Today too many Christians have lost their hunger for God. Instead of coming into the Lord's presence hungry for more of His fullness, our thoughts are held hostage to worldly pursuits and fleshly distractions. At best, we are merely curious about spiritual realities, but not truly hungry.

Let me tell you a story that illustrates what I mean. We had a little dog named Sophie. Sophie loved people food. To her, eating people food was the culinary equivalent of entering the Kingdom of God. She loved our food. She even had a Bible verse that she claimed in faith: "Even the dogs feed on the crumbs" (Matt. 15:27).

Forgiveness and the Future of Your City

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

When I look at the conditions of our world -- the deep racial and political divisions, immigration problems, terror threats, national debt, wars, and lawlessness in our cities -- a deep foreboding comes over my soul. As Christians, we all believe the call of 2 Chronicles 7:14 offers hope, but what if there is no response to the call to humble ourselves and pray? Is there anything we can do to restore hope and stability?

There is a situation mentioned in the Bible that offers a solution. Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, "and all his army, with all the kingdoms of the earth that were under his dominion and all the peoples, were fighting against Jerusalem" (Jer. 34:1). Because of Israel’s sin even the Lord had seemingly withdrawn. For nearly forty years, Jeremiah pleaded with God’s people to repent, but they would not. Israel was nearly apostate, and the dire and repeated warnings of Jeremiah were about to come to pass.

The Real Jesus

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

A Storm, a Ghost or Jesus?
Get used to the idea that Jesus is seeking to perfect your faith (Heb.12:2). Sooner or later, the real Jesus will require you to look straight in the eye of the impossible and believe God for His power.

Consider when the Lord sent His disciples to cross the Sea of Galilee. Later that night, Jesus comes to them walking on water (see Matt. 14:22-33). Contrary winds are causing the sea to churn 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: a lesson on faith.

The Three Battlegrounds

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

The Three Battlegrounds is a book about spiritual warfare. Before we proceed, however, I have two concerns. The first is our need for wisdom. There is an old European proverb worth heeding. It reads: "Age and treachery will always defeat youth and zeal." Before we engage in spiritual warfare, we should know this about Satan: he is an ancient and extremely treacherous foe. On the other hand, the strength of most Christians lies primarily in idealism and untested fervor. It is not long, usually five to ten years in the ministry, and most zeal has waned. Without warning the minister’s call has deteriorated from a walk of vision to a mere job.

What occurred was that zeal, by itself, challenged the treachery of hell and lost. The brightness of youthful dreams dimmed under the dark cloud of relentless satanic assault. Under the weight of growing frustrations and discouragement, compromise increased, and with it came iniquity and spiritual bondage.

Even Sodom

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

All We Lack Is Christlikeness!
Jesus has a word to say, not only to us as individuals, but to entire cities as well. Luke records Jesus confronting a number of cities where He had performed miracles. We read:  "Then He began to denounce the cities in which most of His miracles were done, because they did not repent" (Matt. 11:20).

I know we picture Christ in His gentleness and compassion, and so we should. However, Jesus strongly rebuked the cities of Chorazin, Bethsaida and Capernaum (vv. 21, 23). And we shouldn't stop there, for with tears in His eyes, He wept and  cried out to Jerusalem (Luke 13:34). If the Lord expected cities to repent in the first century, He expects cities can come to repentance again today, even as the men of Nineveh repented at the preaching of Jonah!

Where Is the Disciple’s Cross?

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

In our modern era we have a different version of Christianity than that which Christ founded in the first century. Our version secures a hope in the afterlife but does little to change us in the present life. We are still as easily offended and as unloving as those who do not know Christ -- and we are certainly just as divisive.

Yes, we marvel at what Christ accomplished at Calvary, but we shrink from what He desires to fulfill in us. We desire His blessings but not His backbone. Because we have diluted the full purpose of Christianity, which is functional conformity to Christ (Eph. 4:24), the power to transform us is likewise diluted. As a result, our leaders fall, marriages fail, and the gospel is reduced to a course on ethics, which we can take or leave since God forgives us anyway.

To Seek His Face

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

You say, "But we have humbled ourselves and prayed; we are turning from our wicked ways. Why has He not healed our land?" (See 2 Chron. 7:14) I'm sure He has heard our prayers, but perhaps we desire our healing more than we desire God Himself.  Thus there is yet one more imperative that 2 Chronicles 7:14 calls us to fulfill. The Lord said, "...and seek My face."

Beloved, when the Lord called David to seek His face, David responded, "Your face, O Lord, I shall seek" (Ps. 27:8). This is the essence of one who has "a heart after God." We seek God for His heart, not merely His hand. We have asked Him to extend His hand, to touch and heal us. But the Lord, in His great love for us, desires we seek His face.

"Come and See"

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

John and Andrew began their spiritual commitment to God's will as disciples of John the Baptist. In fact, they had actually been standing near the prophet when Jesus walked by. As the Baptizer saw Jesus, he cried out, "Behold, the Lamb of God!" and from that moment the two disciples began to follow Jesus (John 1:35-37).

This was an insightful account. It is John's handwritten testimony of how he came to the Son of God. Yet John has deeper truths to reveal beyond this historic portrayal. He is also going to reveal what we should each ultimately seek when we come to Christ.

Are You Having an Identity Crisis?

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

It is our conviction that Christ's life not only atoned for the sins of mankind, through our union with Him, a second Genesis began. Paul explains, "The first man, Adam, became a living soul. The last Adam became a life-giving spirit" (1 Cor. 15:45).

The word Adam means "man" and is representative of "mankind." There are now two Adams or two species of man. The first species is the descendant of sinful Adam. His thoughts orbit around his carnal or "natural" desires. He carries both the DNA of Adam's nature and the consequences of Adam's sin. He is, indeed, a "living soul," who is controlled by fears, physical needs, intellect boundaries, pride, culture and sin.

One of You Is a Gossip

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

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?

Prophetic Passions and Protocols

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

When I came to Christ in 1970, America was already pre-wired with end-of-the-world forebodings. Nuclear war seemed inevitable, as Barry McGuire's dire hit "Eve of Destruction" warned. Revolution and lawlessness were spreading everywhere. Yes, the "times" were certainly "a-changin'" as Bob Dylan sang, and indeed so were we. From the rapture-ready hippie revival in the Jesus movement to Hal Lindsey's culture-shaping book, The Late Great Planet Earth, the charismatic movement emerged on the world scene overstocked with prophetic anticipations.

Thus, our preoccupation with all things prophetic has been a kind of spiritual birthmark; it is a prominent characteristic of who we are as last days Christians. Indeed, the '70s produced at least eight major end-of-the-world warnings from prominent authors and various church groups. Other warnings came in the 1980s, punctuated by the book 88 Reasons Why the Rapture Will Be in 1988. When that failed, the revised edition came out with the same failed prophecies: The Final Shout: Rapture Report 1989. In the 1990s, especially with the approach of the year 2000 and the widespread computer failures expected from the Y2K Millennium bug, still more warnings came.

Everyone Who Seeks Finds

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

It is not hard to recognize one who has spent extended time at a newsstand: his conversation overflows with the drama of current affairs. And it is not hard to discern a person who has come from a sporting event, as their face reveals the outcome of the game. Likewise, people can tell when an individual has spent extended time seeking God. An imperturbable calm guards their heart, and their countenance is radiant with light, as with the morning dew of Heaven.

Beloved, to seek and find God is everything.

Fast from Judging

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

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 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.

Goliath Had a Brother

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

Here's the scene: You are in a battle against sickness, oppression or some similar struggle. You seek God, and in some way the grace of God touches your life. Your victory may have come through a word or prayer or some other encouragement, but you absolutely know the Lord has delivered you. Using the five smooth stones of divine grace, you defeated your Goliath.

But then, a few weeks or months or perhaps years later, all the old symptoms suddenly return with a vengeance. If you were struggling with an illness, it manifests worse than ever; if your battle was regarding a relationship or a particular sin, it seems as though all progress has been lost. You are back to square one.

When the Crop Permits

From the Christlikeness track
By Francis Frangipane
(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 Staff of God

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

Imagine a church or ministry staff where each person's primary vision was to attain Christ's likeness. Picture working with this group of people: not only do they each fulfill their responsibilities but they are earnestly reaching for Christ's humility in their service. When they see something flawed in another member of the team, they do not become accusers. Rather, they approach the situation with Christ's redemptive heart, praying for the situation first and, when necessary, bringing correction motivated by love.

Can you envision a staff that is committed to possessing unoffendable unity in their relationships? Is there any doubt that with such a team God could change the world?

Rule in the Midst of Your Enemies!

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

True peace is the fruit of being confident in God’s love; it is born of the revelation that, regardless of the battle, "Greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world" (1 John 4:4). You are not self-assured, you are God-assured.

The God of Peace Will Crush Satan
To wage effective spiritual warfare, we must understand and use spiritual authority. Spiritual authority, however, is not forcing your will upon another person. When you have spiritual authority, you have established God’s peace in an area that once was full of conflict and oppression. Therefore, to truly be able to move in authority, we must first have peace.

Manifested in Our Mortal Flesh

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

What did Jesus have in mind for His followers when His ministry began? What was His holy objective? I am absolutely convinced that Christ not only came to seek and save the lost, but at the highest levels came to replicate Himself in those He saved. And whether we are just beginning our spiritual journey or we are seasoned servants of many years, true Christianity is nothing less than the living manifestation of Christ in and through us (Gal. 2:20).

Indeed, our destiny does not find sure footing until the actual life of Christ emerges through us.

The Mountain of God

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

"Now Moses was pasturing the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian; and he led the flock to the west side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God" (Exod. 3:1).

Mount Horeb was not what it seemed. Though forbidding and barren, Horeb (also called Sinai in Exodus) was the gateway God used to reveal Himself to the Hebrew nation. It was here that the living God appeared in a burning bush to Moses. It was also here that the aged and stammering Moses was sent back to Egypt with miraculous authority to liberate Israel.

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.

Unoffendable, Part 2: False Expectations

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

"Then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. . . . And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold" (Matt. 24:10-12 KJV).

The Sequence That Leads to Apostasy

In our last teaching we looked at offenses and examined the lethal effect an offended spirit could have upon our lives. We discussed how the only way to not be permanently offended was to attain the unoffendable heart of Jesus Christ.

Attaining Christ's heart is not a minor issue. Remember, Jesus warned that in the last days "many" would be offended.

Unoffendable

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

"I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh" (Ezek. 36:26).

God has a new heart for us that cannot be offended, an "unoffendable" heart. Beloved, possessing an unoffendable heart is not an option or a luxury; it's not a little thing. An offended heart is endanger of becoming a "heart of stone."

Consider: Jesus warns that, as we near the end of the age, a majority of people will be offended to such a degree that they fall away from the faith. Listen carefully to His warning:

"Then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another . . . and because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold" (Matt. 24:10-12 KJV).

The Song of Moses and of the Lamb

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

Within the boundaries of the physical universe there is perhaps nothing so accessible to the spiritual realms as music. It is a bridge media, capable of transporting the human soul through the invisible gateways of time and space. Indeed, who among us has not heard the words of an old but special song without suddenly finding our hearts flooded by the sadness or joy of a past event? Or who hasn't listened to Beethoven's "Ode to Joy" or Handel's "Messiah," and had their soul lifted on the wings of music upward into the very threshold of Heaven.

Conversely, it was the music of the 1960s that, like the Trojan horse, smuggled into Western culture a diabolical and hidden army: we sang, while demons of rebellion, sorcery, drug abuse and illicit sex covertly slipped into our thought-life and laid siege upon our moral standards. Today, this sinister music has secured such a major grip upon the West that major rock musicians brazenly embrace the worship of Satan himself, filling stadiums with young people intoxicated by the music of hell.

Elijah, Jehu and the War Against Jezebel

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

There is a war, a very ancient war, between the spirit of Elijah and the spirit of Jezebel. In this age-old battle, Elijah represents the interests of Heaven: the call to repentance and the return to God. Jezebel, on the other hand, represents that unique principality whose purpose is to hinder the deep work of God in the church. 

To the Victor Goes the  Nation
To understand the conflict between the Elijah spirit and the spirit of Jezebel, we must understand these two adversaries as they are seen in the Scriptures. Each is the spiritual counterpart of the other. Is Elijah bold? Jezebel is brazen. Is Elijah ruthless toward evil? Jezebel is vicious toward righteousness. Does Elijah speak of the ways and words of God? Jezebel is full of systems of witchcraft and words of deceit. The war between Elijah and Jezebel continues today. The chief warriors on either side are the prophets of both foes; to the victor goes the soul of our nation.

To Touch the Heart of God

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

There are three basic categories of Christians. The largest group consists of people who, though they try to avoid the darkness in the world, have no hope that the world can be redeemed. Assuming Christ's return is imminent, they retreat into what seems a shelter of apathy concerning the non-Christian world around them. Yet most are not truly apathetic. Their souls, like Lot's, are vexed by the conduct of unprincipled men (2 Pet. 2:7-8). Their compassion, though, is kindled even if it's limited. Rarely do they extend themselves beyond the needs of their immediate family and closest friends. They love the Lord, but they don't know how or what to do to change society or even to positively impact their neighborhoods.

"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.

Find God!

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

There is only one thing that keeps most churches from prospering spiritually. They have yet to find God.

Holiness Comes From Seeking the Glory of God
"How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another, and you do not seek the glory that is from the one and only God?" (John 5:44). If we are displaying our spirituality to impress men, still seeking honor from others, still living to appear righteous or special or "anointed" before people, can we honestly say we have been walking near to the living God? We know we are relating correctly to God when our hunger for His glory causes us to forsake the praise of men.

Does not all glory fade in the light of His glory? Even as Jesus challenged the genuineness of the Pharisees' faith, so He challenges us: "How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another?"

Humility Precedes Holiness

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

"The bigger I grow in God, the smaller I become."
                                  ---Allen Bond

A Holy Man Is a Humble Man
"Learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart" (Matt. 11:29 KJV). The holiest, most powerful voice that ever spoke described Himself as "meek and lowly in heart." Why begin a message on holiness with a quote concerning humility? Simply because holiness is the product of grace and God gives grace only to the humble.

It is vital we understand that Jesus did not condemn sinners; He condemned hypocrites. A hypocrite is a person who excuses his own sin while condemning the sins of another. He is not merely "two-faced," for even the best of us must work at single-mindedness in all instances. A hypocrite, therefore, is one who refuses to admit he is, at times, two-faced, thereby pretending a righteousness that he fails to live.

Two Things, Two Things Only

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

There are so many things to occupy our minds: so many books, so many examples, so many good teachings that deserve our attention, that say, "Here is a truth." But as I have been serving the Lord these past years, He has led me to seek for two things and two things only: to know the heart of God in Christ and to know my own heart in Christ's light.

Knowing the Heart of God
I have been seeking God, searching to know Him and the depth of His love toward His people. I want to know Christ's heart and the compassions that motivate Him. The Scriptures are plain: Jesus loved people. Mark's gospel tells us that after Jesus taught and healed the multitudes, they became hungry. In His compassion, Christ saw them as "sheep without a shepherd" (Mark 6:34). It was not enough for Him to heal and teach them; He personally cared for each of them. Their physical well-being, even concerning food, was important to Him.

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.

The Power of Appreciation

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

Some of us cannot communicate with our loved ones. Why? Part of the reason is that we are unappreciative of them. You see, just as God requires us to "enter His gates with thanksgiving" (Psalm 100:4), so we gain access and the "right to speak" into the hearts of our loved ones through genuinely appreciating the good things we see within them. We must learn to be thankful for the people God has given us.

If you are not thankful for your teenagers, for example, your disappointment with them will ultimately drive them from you. Take time with them and sincerely communicate the things you appreciate about them. There are many good things about them that they need to hear you acknowledge. I am not saying we should not correct our children, but we must balance correction with appreciation and praise, reinforcing their sense of self-worth and value.

It’s a Package Deal

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

In 1983 I was asked to serve as pastor of a Faith church. I had been away from the ministry for three years, and I had no idea what a "Faith" church was, except that faith as a biblical concept seemed fairly sound. So I agreed.

I should add, this was not just any Faith church; it was a satellite-dish-in-the-front-yard Faith church. Painted across the top of the dish in huge, bright red letters were the words, "Jesus Is Lord."

I should also explain that my three-year hiatus between pastorates was due, in part, to a deep sense of failure I was carrying. A member of my former church died from a virus that within four days left her completely paralyzed. I had been with her, fasting and praying during this time. But when she died on the fifth day, the helplessness I felt crushed my confidence in prayer. It was the most traumatic experience of my young ministry.

The Holy Spirit and Fire

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

As Christians, we are fascinated by the Holy Spirit. He teaches, guides, gives gifts, brings forth fruit and, among other things, comforts us on our journey. However, one aspect that is rarely discussed is the baptism of fire. John said that Christ would "baptize . . . with the Holy Spirit and fire" (Matt. 3:11).

Peter tells us we should not be "surprised at the fiery ordeal . . . which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you" (1 Pet. 4:12). Indeed, Jesus said, "Everyone will be salted with fire" (Mark 9:49).

Love Motivated Warfare

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

Jesus knew this world was a realm under satanic siege. Planet Earth was not a place of peace but a realm at war. From the casting out of Lucifer and his angels from Heaven, to the temptation in the Garden of Eden, to Babylon and the multiplication of nations under satanic influence, planet Earth has been an embattled world. The idea that somehow our era is less threatened by evil is the height of deception. We must fight if we will follow Christ into victory.

No matter how beautiful or even innocent the world around us seems at times, remember there was a serpent in Paradise itself. If Adam and Eve had possessed a war mode mentality, they never would have casually accepted the lies of Lucifer. Likewise today, we need to be wise and walk carefully, for "the days are evil" (Eph. 5:16).

When Passover is Fulfilled in God's Kingdom

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

"Easter" Or "Passover"?
We all know that the early church did not celebrate Easter with jelly beans, chocolate bunnies and marshmallow chickens. The children of the first century church never went on Easter egg hunts. The early Christians celebrated the resurrection of Christ and the New Covenant that was fulfilled by the Lord on Passover.

The word Easter actually comes from the Anglo Saxon Eastre, a "goddess of spring." As Christianity spread, to avoid conflict with local traditions, the early church incorporated a number of pagan holidays into church culture. Obviously, colored eggs, rabbits and chickens were not biblical symbols of resurrection but were actually part of the pagan fertility rites of spring.

When David Captured Jerusalem, Part 2

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

(Continued from part 1)

From his earliest years David knew God was calling him to defeat the Jebusites. In fact, Scripture tells us that when David was still just a youth, after he killed Goliath, he took the "Philistine's head and brought it to Jerusalem" (1 Sam. 17:54). At that time, Jerusalem was called Jebus and was occupied by the Jebusites. It was as though David were saying, "Okay, I'm just a young buck, but I've conquered this Philistine giant. Remember me; I will be back."

Fewer than twenty years later David returned, now as king of Israel. As he had conquered Goliath, so he conquered the stronghold of the Jebusites and renamed it the "City of David," soon to be known as Jerusalem.

When David Captured Jerusalem, Part 1

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

One of the great errors of the Church is to limit the expectation of our faith to what God did with previous generations. It is not wrong to want what others had, but God actually has more for us than what occurred in past eras. Indeed, many promises concerning the Church are yet to be fulfilled before Jesus returns. The Bible tells us that the Church will not only experience "perilous times" in the last days (2 Tim. 3:1, KJV), but seasons of renewal and restoration (Acts 3:21). Consequently, in the midst of worldwide conflicts, the Kingdom of God on earth will continually be restored and renewed until it is conformed to the Kingdom of God in Heaven! Plan on seeing new harvests and expressions of God's glory and power. We should expect to see wonders that our fathers did not see (Acts 2:19-21)! Yes, and let us also trust that the promises we fail to possess, our children will walk in.

Your Appointment Still Awaits You

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

Appointed Times
In spite of escalating turmoil in our world, there still remains one last, great outpouring of mercy before the time of the end (Matt. 24:14; Acts 2:17). This supernatural season is not something for which we must beg God. No, its coming has been predetermined. It is the "appointed time" of the Lord.

An "appointed" or "fixed" time is an open display of the sovereignty and power of God, whether it is in calling a person or calling a nation. In it we discover with absolute certainty that nothing is impossible for God. It is a season when God fulfills the hopes and dreams of His people.

The Gift of Discernment

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

If we will serve with true discernment, our perception must be renewed until we see life through the eyes of Christ the Redeemer.

To Discern, You Cannot Judge

We will never possess mature, ongoing discernment until we crucify our instincts to judge. Realistically, for most of us, this may take an extended, focused season of uprooting old thought-systems -- attitudes that were not planted in faith and love for people. In truth, if we will appropriate the discernment born in the "mind of Christ," we must first find the heart of Christ (1 Cor. 2:16). The heart and love of Jesus is summed up in His own words: "I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world" (John 12:47). Yet even when the Lord does judge us, it is to save and deliver us.

The Wisdom of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

This being February, which is also Black History Month here in America, I thought it would be timely to recall and apply the wisdom of Dr. Martin Luther King. He was a man for the ages, a preacher whom God raised up and anointed.

"In the final analysis, says the Christian ethic, every man must be respected because God loves him. The worth of an individual does not lie in the measure of his intellect, his racial origin, or his social position. Human worth lies in relatedness to God. An individual has value because he has value to God. Whenever this is recognized, "whiteness" and "blackness" pass away as determinants in a relationship and "son" and "brother" are substituted." --The Ethical Demands, Dec, 1962.

Seeing Him Who Is Unseen

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

There are times when, to lead us on into new authority and blessings, God must liberate us from the container of our previous experiences. Consider Elijah's encounter with the Most High on Mt Horeb. Three natural signs occurred. But the Lord was not in the wind, the earthquake or the fire -- all of which were familiar symbols to Elijah. The Lord who caused these mighty manifestations was not in them.

For Elijah, mighty manifestations had been signs of God's approval. But something new was at hand that required a fresh submission to the living God. A double portion of power was coming! The distinguishing characteristic of this new anointing would not only be seen in supernatural manifestations, but also in greater wisdom and compassion.

The Baptism of Love

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

To Dwell Upon God
It is hard for us in this anxious, fearful age to quiet our souls and actually dwell upon the presence of God in our hearts. We can engage ourselves with Bible study or other acts of obedience; in varying degrees we know how to witness, exhort, and bless. We even know how to analyze these things and then perfect them. But to lift our souls above the material world and consciously drink from the presence of God Himself seems beyond us.

Yet to actually grasp the substance of God is to enter a spiritual place of immunity; it is to receive into our spirits the victory Christ won for us, which is oneness with God in Christ.

Life-Giving Spirit

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

As Christians our faith tells us that Christ died as payment for our sins. We believe He actually rose from the grave as proof that He was indeed sent by God. Yet it is also our conviction that, upon this resurrection event, not only were the sins of mankind atoned for but through Christ a second Genesis began.

Paul explains, "The first man, Adam, became a living soul. The last Adam became a life-giving spirit" (1 Cor. 15:45). The word Adam means "man" and is representative of "mankind." There are now two Adams or two species of man. The first species of man is the descendant of sinful Adam. His life orbits around his carnal or "natural" desires. He carries both the DNA of Adam’s nature and the consequences of Adam's sin. This natural man is focused upon fulfilling the needs of his soul. He is indeed a "living soul," but he is controlled by fears, physical needs, intellect boundaries, cultural environment and sin.

Everyone Who Seeks Finds

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

The Eternal Imprint
It is to our shame that in our era church services do not focus more on actually seeking God. Yes, we do honor God and thank Him for what He has done. We hear a sermon and perhaps enjoy a time of fellowship with others. Yet only rarely do we depart a congregational meeting with the fire of eternity reflecting off our faces. Instead we fill up with information about God without actually drawing near to Him. Most of us are still largely unaware of God's presence.

While we rightly need church programs, fellowship, and times for ministry training, we must not assume that religious indoctrination is the same thing as actually seeking God. And while I am often blessed listening to contemporary Christian music, even godly entertainment is no substitute for my own worship encounter with God.

Holy Spirit Radar

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

"For nothing is hidden that will not become evident, nor anything secret that will not be known and come to light."---Luke 8:17

The peace of Christ is not just a divine attribute; it is also an organ of communication in the language of God. The Holy Spirit uses peace to communicate with us. If a situation warrants caution, our peace is troubled; if a direction is rightly chosen, peace confirms it. Thus, we are admonished by God's Word to "let the peace of Christ rule in [our] hearts" (Col. 3:15). The literal translation for rule is "to act as arbiter."

"With the Glance of Your Eyes"

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

"Who is this that grows like the dawn, as beautiful as the full moon, as pure as the sun, as awesome as an army with banners?" ---Song of Sol. 6:10

We were created for more than just having a religion . Indeed, in regards to satisfying our deeper longings, a time will come when we realize that religion is not enough. It satisfies neither us nor Christ. God's Word reveals that Christ wants to actually, personally, know us (Matt. 7: 22-23).

"I Do Not Remember"

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

How little we understand of eternal redemption! How many times will God forgive you? If you have truly set your heart to follow Him, He will cancel your sins as often as you ask. Will He forgive you of the worst sin you can think of? Yes! You may have to live with the consequences of your misdeed, but God can use your repentance and newly found humility to inspire others. As for the sin itself, if you deeply and sincerely repent of it, not only will God forgive you, He will blot it out of His memory.

Cease Striving and Know

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

It is time to abandon our fears and the stressful anxieties that come from not trusting in God.

One title for the Messiah is Immanuel, which means, "God with us." Jesus promised to be with us, "even to the end of the age" (Matt. 28:20). At some point we must accept the wonder and power of Christ's promise. He is with us always! To mistrust this promise is to reject the very character of the divine nature. It is serious sin.

Arise Prayer Warriors!

By Francis Frangipane
(En Español)

Jesus told a parable to show that men ought to pray at all times and not lose heart (Luke 18: 1-8). In other words, if you are not praying, you will lose heart. Most of the things I pray for I have to pray through to get the answer. God desires to see something deeper come out of my prayer time than just me getting an answer to prayer. He wants me to become like Jesus. So He arranges character-forming battles that not only will ultimately change the world around me, but will change me first. This is what all true prayer warriors have discovered.