When the Crop Permits

By Francis Frangipane
From the ICIT Christlikeness track

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.

If We Do Not Lose Heart

By Francis Frangipane

The prophet Daniel warns of a time when Satan will "wear down the saints of the Highest One" (Dan. 7:25). How this occurs in the final hours of the age remains to be seen, but this battle is already occurring today. The final effect of what seems like never-ending delays is that believers are worn out.

Do you know anyone who is weary with his or her battle? Are you yourself weary? I know many who seem trapped in situations that should have been remedied months and even years ago, but the battle continues against them. Situations and people, often empowered by demonic resistance, stand in opposition to the forward progress of God’s people. As a result of constant demonic opposition, many Christians gradually accept a quiet, but weighty, oppression on their souls.

The Morning Star

By Francis Frangipane

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.

The Scriptures use the image of the morning star to depict the church at the end of the age. Indeed, this visual portrays well the reality that awaits us.

Concerning the end times, Peter wrote:

The Nearness of Our God

By Francis Frangipane

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).

Arise Shine!

By Francis Frangipane
(En EspaƱol)

"It was for this He called you through our gospel, that you may gain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ" (2 Thess. 2:14).

The Word of God states plainly -- no, it commands those at the end of the age to be fearless in the face of darkness! Speaking through the prophet Isaiah, the Spirit of the Lord orders His people:

    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.
    Nations will come to your light,
    And kings to the brightness of your rising.
                                          ---Isaiah 60:1-3