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Phoney Rabbis, Lost Discernment and the Eddie Long Disaster

Why did people applaud Bishop Long’s bizarre “coronation” in Atlanta?

Question of the week: What should you do when a megachurch pastor is accused of serious financial and/or sexual misconduct?

A.     Ask the pastor to step down so he or she can receive ministry, and then conduct a thorough investigation.

B.     Flatly deny all allegations and wait until the storm blows over.

C.     Use church funds to pay off the people who made the sex abuse accusations.

D.     Ask a guest preacher to call the pastor to the stage, wrap him in a 312-year-old Torah scroll and ask an “expert” in Old Testament language to declare him a “king” so he can be exonerated of all wrongdoing. read more

Revival or Disaster Headed for US West Coast?

One of the greatest revivals of all time began at Azusa Street in Los Angeles in 1906. The wretched former stable burned so brightly with the glory of God that for a time it was called “the second most famous address in the world.” God can do it again, and will, if we want it enough.

Every revival in history seems to be the result of a few people becoming so hungry for God that they wanted Him more than oxygen. Those who have such hunger will not be denied. It’s time to seek a revival that becomes the most famous address in the world. It’s time to seek a move of God that won’t quit moving.

I’ve seen in visions and dreams the destruction that is destined, especially on our West Coast. This has caused some to say that I have a hatred for our West Coast, which is not true, but rather the opposite. I really can’t help what I dream, and though a psycho analyst might say it is the result of deep feelings, I know these are prophetic dreams. They never leave me pleased, but rather I’m grieved enough to take all of the heat for sharing them with the hope that people will listen, repent, and they will not have to come true. read more

jenniferleclaire1

How to Get Off the Emotional Roller Coaster

We are emotional beings. God gave us emotions—and God Himself has emotions. Our emotions can be a great motivator at times and a great enemy at other times.

Think about it for a minute. Sometimes we feel joyful; sometimes we grieve. Sometimes we feel bold; sometimes intimidated. Sometimes we feel triumphant; sometimes completely and utterly physically and emotionally exhausted.

Is it possible that we could avoid the extreme highs and lows of the emotional roller coaster if we maintained God’s perspective? What if we could wait on the Lord, mount up with wings as eagles and take a prophetic perspective of our lives—then rejoice in the Lord for the victory? read more

Please Stop the Holy Ghost Smackdown

Do you want the real power of the Holy Spirit? Then don’t pretend by pushing people to the floor when you pray.

I love it when the Holy Spirit shows up in church gatherings. Whenever sinners are converted, backsliders repent, bodies are healed or self-centered believers are broken by God, we see evidence of the Spirit’s work. But I don’t appreciate it when people fabricate spiritual manifestations to prove God is using them.

A few years ago a popular charismatic preacher spoke at a meeting I attended at a church in Orlando, Fla. After his message he asked all ordained ministers to run to the platform so he could lay hands on them. Immediately this man’s team of beefy bodyguards began grabbing people, dragging them onto the stage and holding them in place until the evangelist could pray for everyone. read more

francisfrangipane1

Surrender of the Vision Keeper

If you find yourself more drawn toward prayer than promotion, more toward humility than hype, you are being prepared by the Lord for the glory of God. What He is working in you is typical of what God is establishing in thousands of other believers.

However, before the Father ultimately reveals Christ as Lord over the earth, He will first reveal Him as Lord over the church. And while we should rejoice, we must also take heed. For until we are standing face to face in glory with Jesus Himself, we are going to be in transition. To each of us, Christ's call remains, "Come, follow Me!" (Luke 18:22). If we will walk with Him in obedience, He will take us into the fullness of His presence.

Still, transitions can be frightening. The uncertainty of those passages between spiritual plateaus can hold us hostage to yesterday's blessings. Let us recall with godly fear that the bronze serpent, which brought healing to Israel in the wilderness, by Hezekiah's day had become an idol that had to be torn down.

Our hearts must bow to God alone, for even spiritual gifts, when isolated from Christ the Giver, can become idolatrous. Therefore to successfully navigate this season of change, the Lord will require of us a fresh surrender to His Lordship. He will demand that our preconceived ideas and expectations be submitted to Him. For if we are continually telling the Holy Spirit where we expect to go, we neutralize our capacity to hear where He wants to take us. read more

harry-jackson

Rewriting History: The Victor’s Privilege

The last few years I have been repeatedly disappointed by the bickering and pettiness displayed by our legislators, political pundits and candidates for office. I have longed for representatives who are informed and articulate, who habitually seek the best laws and results for the land. Unfortunately, the history I have reviewed recently suggests that we may be more like our forefathers than we would like to believe.

Those who long nostalgically for more civil times should not read some of the pamphlets distributed during the election of 1800 when Jefferson defeated Adams! Neither should they watch the movie Conspiracy, which discusses the way Washingtonians accused of working with John Wilkes Booth were unfairly stripped of their rights and executed. Although the political process was fraught with danger and contention, there were also many leaders who paid a real price for their convictions.

For example, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. has loomed larger than life in the hearts and minds of Americans since his assassination in 1968. The massive monument which now stands on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., is a physical manifestation of the spiritual giant he has been to so many of us over the past two generations. Today’s leaders can only hope to capture a fraction of the respect from his followers and fear from his opponents that Dr. King commanded during his lifetime. Yet this was never the life that he sought for himself. Indeed, if there is one lesson we can learn from this man today, it is that the best leaders are often reluctant to bear the burden of leadership, because they understand the cost is so high. read more

Getting Angelic Assistance

In Acts 27, the apostle Paul was a prisoner on a ship with 276 passengers onboard. Launching the voyage in the winter, the ship headed into a violent sea storm, called Euroclydon. The ship tossed like a leaf in the wind and was in danger of splitting into pieces. No stars or light from the moon was seen for many days, and because of the dangerous rocks and quicksand, it appeared that Paul and the passengers would drown in the murky waters.

Paul had been on an extended fast and was praying for God’s intervention. God released a heavenly messenger to bring Paul this encouraging Word: read more

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I’m Endorsing Rick Santorum for President in the Florida Primary

Four years ago I was one of the first to endorse Mike Huckabee for president. He was a former governor of Arkansas who I felt had great leadership—and he not only shares but embodies our Christian values. But this year I took a wait and see attitude until just a few days before the Florida primary to be held Jan. 31.

I was interviewed on PBS this week for a show that airs this weekend. Kim Lawton, the respected correspondent who has interviewed me before and always reported fairly on the evangelical community, wanted to know whom I’m endorsing. I told her I’m endorsing Sen. Rick Santorum. read more

Anybody Else Out There Going Through a Raging, Fiery Trial?

You were walking by faith and not by sight down the narrow path that leads to life. One day at a time, you were pressing on toward the goal to win the prize to which God in Christ Jesus is calling you upward. You had the peace of God that passes all understanding.

Suddenly, the narrow road constricted. The eyes of your faith waxed dim. One day at a time seemed like too much and the finish line too far off in the darkened distance. The peace turned to anxiety and you didn’t understand how to get past where you are to where you are going—or even how to get there.

What in the world is happening? It’s a trial—and not just any brand of trial. A raging fiery tribulation. A top to bottom faith examination. A fruit inspection. You are on audition for God on the way to the next level. The good news is you don’t have to waste your pain. You can rejoice—and take a lesson from a High Priest who understands. read more

The Desperate Cry of Africa’s Women

It is time for the church in Africa—and throughout the world—to address abuse and injustice against women and girls.

After spending last week in the city of Masindi, Uganda, I traveled to Uganda’s capital, Kampala, to address a women’s conference. After my first session a woman named Florence grabbed me and began to tell her painful story.

She had given birth to five girls during her marriage. But when her girls were small, her husband decided to leave Florence because she had not produced a son. He blamed her (I guess he didn’t know a man’s sperm determines the gender of a child) and he said she had shamed him by having only girls. He sold the family house, evicted his wife and daughters and gave them no money for food or school fees. Then he married again and started a new family. He got two boys and another daughter out of the deal. read more

Robert-Ricciardelli

2012: 25 Kingdom Initiatives

As we move along into the new year, I wanted to share 25 key initiatives that I feel are significant for every believer. I am hopeful that these will confirm some things the Lord has already been showing you as well as encourage you to pray into these initiatives for your own lives, and for the body of Christ.

I pray that each of us would ask the Father to reveal to us our part in the body and that we would seek Him for guidance for His will to be done through us. May the Lord kingdomize your life in amazing ways in 2012 to further expand His kingdom and His glory upon the earth.

1. Give to Caesar (government) what is Caesar’s, and give to God what is His, which are our very lives. Jesus was consumed with His Father’s Kingdom being brought to the earth. We must focus on Christ and His kingdom rather than being overly concerned with political processes and government foolishness. We pray for governmental change, but we must look to God and not government to provide for us.

2. God is raising up new leaders who will stand for righteousness in the realms of government. This generation of Daniels and Josephs will continue to take their place in leading nations with Father’s influence, presence and wisdom in governmental offices. read more

Protected!

I was going to a birthday party. Like any great Pappy, I stopped on the way to the party to get my grandson, Elijah, a present for his first birthday. He was at the age where he mimicked sounds. If you asked him, “What does a doggie say?” His reply was “Arf.”  How did he get to be so cute?

As I walked into the little toy area of a drug store, I spotted the perfect toy. A drug store doesn’t have a really big toy section I found out. But here it was: a cute, fuzzy, battery-operated puppy. A long cord was attached to the toy, with a small box on the other end. It had two buttons on it, to make the doggie bark and walk. Now this was a cool toy! It was well worth the $5.99 price tag. read more

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America's Way Out

The role of the church in the public square has been the subject of many recent debates. Much of the concern about Christians and the evangelical church has centered on how we will use our considerable secular power at the ballot box. While I agree that the church should fully engage in the democratic process, there is much more we can offer the American public.

This article is something of an open letter to the Christian community. After weeks of reflection upon our current national problems, I arrived at a blinding flash of the obvious. My epiphany is that our spiritual standing before God is our greatest gift to the nation. In a manner of speaking, we have friends in "high" places. We are the ultimate insiders.

When we pray and believe things happen. Unfortunately, we have not always understood the ways of God. We often pray when we should lobby and we lobby when we should pray. For example, during the Bush presidency there has been more prayer offered up for the nation than ever. As a result of all the prayer the Lord did many good things. In addition, he also allowed things to occur which could bring the rest of the nation to her knees. There is a war raging in Iraq, the economy is in shambles and energy costs are soaring. Our national woes may cause millions to lose confidence in false gods, humanistic ideologies and even their own abilities. read more

jenniferleclaire1

Why You Should Never Let the Devil See You Sweat

Never let the devil see you sweat. If your best friend betrays you, don’t put your disappointment on display. If you can’t pay your mortgage, don’t verbally doom your financial fate. If the doctor gives you a bad report, don’t speak death over your life. If you just feel like giving up, don’t voice your resignation.

There’s no faith in circumstantial fretting. Our frustration and fear is what causes us to overheat and sometimes boil over. Why not decide by your will to agree with the Word of God and receive the grace you need to overcome the disappointment, the financial stress, the health issues and the despair? Why not walk in Philippians 1:28? Pick whatever translation inspires you. Here are a couple of choices: read more

Joyce-Meyer-Nov-2011

The Change of Mind That Changed My Life

Someone once said, “When you’re finished changing, you’re finished.” Change is a part of life. It’s also uncomfortable and can be scary. Here are a few facts about change:

It’s a process. And it’s often a lengthy one that requires long-term commitment.

It’s frightening. Even though we usually want change, we also like to be in control. But we have to be willing to let go of something to move toward something new—without knowing exactly what the new thing will be like.

It takes action. It comes when we confront our fears. read more

Why I Refuse to Give Up on the Local Church

This is not a time for gloom and doom. The church can shine its brightest in a dark hour.

When my friend Ferrell Hardison moved to the town of Princeton, N.C., in 1990, he began pastoring a Pentecostal church with 70 people. Founded in 1918, it was a tired, aging congregation with a tiny budget. Ferrell was the 25th pastor to lead the church, and some of his predecessors had stayed only a year or two. Not exactly a young pastor’s dream job!

Today, the church has a new name—The Bridge—and it has grown to 1,250 in weekly attendance. Last fall the vibrant congregation broke ground on a new worship center, and they’ve planted a satellite congregation in the town of Goldsboro, N.C., that already has 300 members. A large percentage of the church’s $2.6 million annual budget is marked for outreach, and Ferrell estimates that at least 3,000 people have come to Christ through their ministry in recent years. read more

A Word for 2012: New Leadership, New Boldness and New Provision

As I have prayed about the coming year, I’ve sensed three clear directives.

Some people are terrified of 2012. They worry because the Mayans of ancient Mexico mysteriously ended their 5,126-year-old calendar on Dec. 21, 2012—as if they expected the world to end that day. This silly hypothesis became the basis for several New Age books and a goofy disaster movie, 2012, in which actor John Cusack avoids meteors and earthquakes just in time to get his family aboard the modern version of Noah’s ark (built in China!) before the rest of the world is destroyed by a tsunami.

I’m not afraid of 12/21/12 because (1) Ancient Mayans never actually said the world would end in 2012—and even if they did, they didn’t have an inside track to God; (2) Doomsday predictions have never been accurate; and (3) Jesus holds the future in his hands. As long as I’m in relationship with Him, it doesn’t matter what happens on earth. I’m secure.

Despite strange weather patterns, global terrorism and the specter of an economic crash, I’m actually optimistic about where we’re headed in 2012. And as I have prayed about the coming year, I’ve sensed these three clear directives: read more

harry-jackson

Defying Political Labels: Martin Luther King Jr.'s Legacy

On Oct. 16, the new memorial for Martin Luther King Jr. (MLK) was finally completed. There was only one problem with the work: The wrong words were carved on the statue. The tone of the phrase misrepresented “the spirit” of the fallen leader. After a huge controversy, the memorial leadership decided to change the writing on the statue.

This change was legitimate. Unfortunately an illegitimate expression occurred this past week. Politico reported that Tavis Smiley had been disinvited from the 20th annual MLK luncheon, hosted by the Peoria Civic Center. Why? Mr. Smiley has said publicly that President Obama had not done enough for black Americans, which, according to the center, upset some people. He was replaced by reliable liberal Michael Eric Dyson.

In later interviews, Mr. Smiley noted that only a small handful of the 1,500 ticket holders for the event complained about his comments, resulting in his ouster from the luncheon. He also made it clear that he supports President Obama, but as a journalist feels obligated to hold him accountable for his actions in office. While I may disagree with Mr. Smiley on some issues, I certainly agree that his honest appraisal of President Obama’s performance should not disqualify him from speaking at a luncheon honoring Dr. King. read more

We Can Move Mountains

We are a product of what we say. This is true even in the business realm. If you have ever been involved in sales of any type you will understand what I mean. You are taught to set a goal and then tell other salespeople in your district that you are going to sell a certain amount of goods during that period. As you say it with your mouth, a certain amount of truth will enter into the situation.

The reason is that we are created in God's image (see Gen. 1:27), and God has what He says! When He said, "Let there be light," there was light (v. 3). Since we are created in God's own image, we have the authority to open our mouths and put in motion what we desire for the future. read more

jenniferleclaire1

Don’t Pronounce Shame on Me! (Or Anyone Else!)

If you don’t like what I write, agree to disagree or speak the truth in love. But don’t pronounce shame on me. If you don’t agree with your pastor’s theology, ask some honest questions in the right spirit or go to another church. But don’t pronounce shame on him. If you don’t like the way your son is behaving, then discipline him. But don’t pronounce shame on him.

Beloved, I see far too many shame pronouncers in the Body of Christ. And it troubles me. Rather than announce what a shame it is, let me rather turn to the Word and educate shame-pronouncers why Jesus doesn’t want us to pronounce shame on one another. Like Paul, I do not write these things to shame you, but as my beloved brethren I warn you (1 Cor. 4:14).

In other words, I’m not trying to heap shame or condemnation on people who have adopted the habit of pronouncing “shame on you!” when they don’t like what people say or do. I am merely warning you not to use these three words so loosely because your words carry the power of life and death and Jesus suffered death to give us life. read more

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