A NEW SPIRITUAL DOOR TO A NEW ERA IS OPENING

This is another excerpt from my new soon-to-be released book, Cleansing The Temple: Restoring The Glory Of The Lord.

A few years ago, as my wife and I were praying, she saw a very large door and heard a distinct squeaking sound as it turned on its hinges. It was an ancient spiritual door that had not been opened in a long time.

We believe it is similar to the spiritual door that opened in the time of Jesus’ birth. After 400 years of silence, with no prophetic vision or revelation, since the days of the prophet Malachi, a large door began to open, and God finally began to speak through certain consecrated individuals.

“And behold, there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon, and this man was just and devout, waiting for the Consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. So he came by the Spirit into the temple” (Lk. 2:25-27).

This old man, Simeon, was waiting for the Consolation of Israel. The phrase “Consolation of Israel” is linked to the redemption of Israel that some in Jerusalem were looking for (Lk. 2:38) and of the kingdom of God (Lk. 23:51). Prior to the time of Jesus’ birth, there was a “remnant” in Israel who had revelation of what was coming, and they were waiting.

The Consolation of Israel involved the coming of the Messiah and the revealing of salvation for all nations (Lk. 2:29-32). Simeon even knew by revelation that the Gentiles would be offered salvation as well (v. 32). This was unheard of in those days, as the Jews had been God’s chosen people for centuries of time. Many Jews never received this revelation of the salvation of the Gentiles, even when it came through Jesus and the apostles.

Anna was another old woman, a prophetess, who received revelation by the Spirit of God concerning the coming Messiah.

“Now there was one, Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was of a great age, and had lived with a husband seven years from her virginity; and this woman was a widow of about eighty-four years, who did not depart from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day. And coming in that instant she gave thanks to the Lord, and spoke of Him to all those who looked for redemption in Jerusalem” (Lk. 2:36-38).

Notice how Anna spoke of Christ to “all those who looked for redemption in Israel”. A large spiritual door had now opened.

WITH EVERY OPEN DOOR COMES THE RELEASE OF DIVINE ACTIVITY BUT ALSO ADVERSARIES

Try to imagine the divine activity that was suddenly happening in Israel during the time of Jesus’ birth. Besides this revelation that was given to Simeon and Anna, there were warnings and direction given in dreams to the wise men and Joseph (Matt. 1:20; 2:12-13, 19-20, 22). There were angelic visitations granted to Zacharias, father to John the Baptist (Lk. 1:11-20), the virgin Mary (Lk. 1:26-38), and the shepherds (Lk. 2:9-15). There were infillings of the Holy Spirit (Lk. 1:41, 67) and prophecies (Lk. 1:42-55, 67-79). Remember, this kind of divine activity had not happened in about 400 years.

As it was in the time of Jesus’ birth when a huge door was opened that resulted in all this divine activity — as it was when Jesus began and fulfilled His public ministry about 30 years later, as it was in the days just prior to and after His crucifixion and resurrection, as it was in the days of the initial outpouring of the Holy Spirit, and as it was in the time of the early Church, so will it be in the last days, just prior to the second coming of the Lord.

But as it was during the time of these events 2,000 years ago, when only a remnant knew and understood these things, and there were also many adversaries, much opposition, and demonic activity, so will it be in the last days just before Jesus’ return. Many will not be ready, and the opposition will be great as Satan’s lease on the Earth shortens.

And as the Lord prepared His remnant and revealed to them the time of His birth, so He is preparing His people today for that which is yet to come. Isn’t it interesting that nearly a generation later after the birth of Jesus, many still did not receive Him as the Messiah? Many did not receive their time of visitation (Lk. 19:41-44), and it resulted in their judgment.

Interestingly, it was immediately after Jesus pronounced judgment on Jerusalem that He cleansed the temple for a second time, as Luke records it (Lk. 19:45-46). But it was the chief priests, the scribes, and the leaders of the people who vehemently opposed Jesus and sought to destroy Him (v. 47-48). And so it is today as the time of Jesus’ return draws nearer.

We are now in a time of preparation for the coming crisis of last days events, especially as it pertains to the judgment of the world, the final harvest, and also the glory that is to come. There are a company of John the Baptist-like messengers who are of the spirit and power of Elijah (Lk. 1:17), and who function as a Refiner’s Fire by the power of the Holy Spirit, which will cleanse and purify those who receive their words and ministry.

Let me say it another way: Before the worst shall come and the day of darkness encompasses us about, there will be those who shall be sent by the Lord, who shall carry the fulness of His truth and fire, not only to America but to other nations. For there is a work that must be done — first and foremost spiritually — before the Lord returns. This work has already begun.

NOTE: Our books and articles are forerunners to the move of God and personal holiness. The fire of God and the fear of God is attached to them. If you feel like this article is valuable, please use the social media buttons below to share it. Also, this ministry is sustained by the freewill offerings of those who believe in the mandate and message of revival that this ministry carries. If this article has been a blessing to you, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help? 

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WE ARE TOO EASILY FOOLED BY THE WISDOM OF MAN

This is another excerpt from my new soon-to-be released book, Cleansing The Temple: Restoring The Glory. I hope you will get a copy and help the work of an unknown writer publish the word of the Lord. Pre-orders at a discounted price will be offered soon.  

“However, we speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory…” (1 Cor. 2:6-7).

In this day of great human ingenuity, it takes the wisdom of God and knowing His heart and ways to discern the difference between what is of man and what is truly of God. We are easily fooled by principles and techniques and the modern machinery of man that can be used effectively in man’s own strength and prowess to accomplish great things — all without the Holy Spirit’s involvement. We label so many things as originating in God when, in fact, God has nothing to do with it.

We take pride in our own knowledge and abilities, or we are naive and lack godly discernment. For example, just because something is new, big, and grows fast does not necessarily mean it has its origin in God. It may even be emotionally thrilling, intellectually stimulating, and very financially and numerically successful — all without God’s involvement. Savor this wisdom so that you will cultivate more discernment in your life.

Let’s understand that there are principles, which, when implemented by anyone, will get results. The problem is not the principles, per se, but the motivating power and ethics behind the principles. Whom do they honor? Whom do they serve?

Human nature is easily fooled by a charismatic personality, the energy he exudes, the projection of a strong ministry gift, and crowd-stimulating and mind-controlling techniques. For example, often when people feel an excitement in a corporate assembly, they make the assumption that God is there, but that is not necessarily so. This happens many times, especially when the music or what we label “praise and worship” is emotionally stimulating. We believe and appreciate excitement that is born of the Spirit of God, but it can be difficult for a casual observer to discern the difference between what is of the flesh or the soul of man and what is truly of the Spirit of God.

Recently I came across a list of principles that shed much light on the very subtle differences between the world’s version of wisdom versus the kingdom of God’s version. In the words, I recognized these principles as the difference between man’s wisdom and God’s wisdom. Following is a contrast of those differences.

The wisdom of man provides an identity in yourself. The wisdom of God establishes our identity in Christ.

The wisdom of man provides a sense of uniqueness, specialness, and personal destiny. The wisdom of God admonishes us to lay down our lives and to shun personal advancement and self-aggrandizement.

The wisdom of man provides strong leadership and a charismatic leader figure to follow. The wisdom of God delivers us from false identities and an inordinate dependency on man.

The wisdom of man uses stimulating music and songs as a tool to rally people to a great cause or project. The wisdom of God uses music and songs to worship and glorify God, not human interest or selfish ambition.

The wisdom of man calls us to great, world-changing endeavors. The wisdom of God calls us to die daily; it’s irrelevant whether that involves greatness to change the world.

The wisdom of man motivates us to overcome obstacles, challenges, and adversity (even the world does this). The wisdom of God leads us to the One who is our all-sufficiency, admonishes us to rejoice in Him in our trials, and overcomes evil with good by loving our enemies.

The wisdom of man is capable of challenging us to personal discipline, hard work, and sacrifice. The wisdom of God instructs us to yield to our new spiritual nature and tells us that we can do nothing without Him.

The wisdom of man calls us to greatness. The wisdom of God defines greatness as being the servant of all. Jesus is worthy whether we are called to be great or small as the world defines it.

The wisdom of man conducts large-scale meetings to impart vision. The wisdom of God leads us to New Testament life and Scripture, which emphasizes being like Christ and being conformed to His image as the vision. (Do you realize there’s not one New Testament Scripture on vision? Knowing Jesus intimately and making Him known is the vision. I know this is a shocker to some people, but Jesus modeled leadership by laying down His life for others, not by presenting a vision. (Calvary is the vision). The vision is doing what God tells you to do.

The wisdom of man provides enticing speech and heightened oratory to inspire and stir people to a mission. The wisdom of God teaches lowliness and humility and a mutual laying down of our lives for each other as the ultimate virtue.

Do you know what releases maximum potential in the body of Christ, so that we are built up and equipped for service? It is lowering yourself and serving others as being more important than you. This is what brings complete restoration in the body of Christ.

The contrast that I show here between the wisdom of man and the wisdom of God is not intended to quench godly motivation and inspiration to a God-directed cause or a mission, but to show you the subtle differences between a man-centered and a God-centered methodology. The world uses some of these principles and techniques with great success and often for good causes, but we must understand that there is a subtle but large gap between what is good and what is God.

NOTE: Our books and articles are forerunners to the move of God and personal holiness. The fire of God and the fear of God is attached to them. If you feel like this article is valuable, please use the social media buttons below to share it. Also, this ministry is sustained by the freewill offerings of those who believe in the mandate and message of revival that this ministry carries. If this article has been a blessing to you, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help? 

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THE CALLING OF A CHURCH AND A NATION BACK TO GOD

This is an excerpt from my newest book, Cleansing The Temple, Restoring The Glory, which will be released in a few weeks. 

If ever there was a time when true apostles and prophets must arise in America and the world, it is now—not so much to just give prophetic words of what the future holds, but with holy conviction, to call a Church and a nation back to the true worship of God, to drive out the money changers, and to call us back to true Spirit-inspired fervent effectual prayer and fasting, and holy character. They must also confront the elite vipers of iniquity and warn the false apostles and prophets of their whitewashed walls and false claims to peace, and to cry out to the people to repent and return to God. Both John the Baptist and Jesus did this as well as the writers of the New Testament.

Now is the time to flee the existing superficial version of Christianity and our false unholy allegiances and return to a lifestyle that reflects the humility and meekness of our Master. It is an hour when true ministers must move away from the rat race of professional ministry, money-making schemes, and the pursuit of fame, popularity, and media exposure, and be made whole in God’s presence and through God’s love.

Only true friends of the bridegroom whose character has been shaped in the crucible of their own sufferings and earned God’s trust are qualified to lead a Church and a nation back to God. They alone shall know the secret and heart of the Lord.

“The secret of the Lord is with those who fear Him, and He will show them His covenant” (Ps. 25:14).

Notice how this beautiful verse reads in the Living Bible:

“Friendship with God is reserved for those who reverence him. With them alone he shares the secrets of his promises.”

Too many modern apostolic and prophetic voices are tainted because they are too eager for power, popularity, influence, riches, and fame. They seek more the validation and affirmation of men at the neglect of truly living and speaking in the sight of God. The road can be lonely and difficult at times, but we endanger ourselves when we seek the validation of man over the validation of our heavenly Father. We must begin to align ourselves with the heart of Christ and see clearly what is within man, and rather than seeking approval in the flesh, prefer at all costs the approval of God. This will keep us preferring purity over popularity, intimacy over influence, and holiness more than hype.

A heartfelt reliance and preference for the approval of God over the approval of man is what distinguishes all true apostles and prophets from counterfeits and wannabees. The same could be said for all ministers and all saints. For there will come a time when they must not only speak out against the carnal and sinful status quo, but shake off those religious, political, and cultural traditions that run contrary to what God demands and expects of His people. This cannot happen unless they love and fear God more than man. This also cannot happen unless they have an exceedingly great zeal for the honor of God’s house, whom we are.

NOTE: Our books and articles are forerunners to the move of God and personal holiness. The fire of God and the fear of God is attached to them. If you feel like this article is valuable, please use the social media buttons below to share it. Also, this ministry is sustained by the freewill offerings of those who believe in the mandate and message of revival that this ministry carries. If this article has been a blessing to you, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help? 

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TOO MANY MINISTERS AREN’T QUALIFIED FOR MINISTRY

In 2002 in a lengthy season of prayer and fasting I saw a glass ceiling above me and everything I desired in ministry was on the other side—favor, anointing, power, significance, open doors, impact, etc. But while I was gazing at that glass ceiling God pointed me to the floor and began speaking to me about my foundations and character. He came to test me on a book I had just written called Soulish Leadership.

On the heels of several well known ministers who recently died, among them some who were overcome by sinful lifestyles and vices, this is a sober reminder. God anoints men. Men qualify themselves with character (1 Tim. 3). Men are enamored with anointing, gifts, charisma, and talents. God places the premium on character, and He will test you, especially if you are crying out to be like Him.

My father in the faith, the late Kenneth E. Hagin, ministered to 1000s of pastors and churches in his lifetime. He told us that very few of those pastors qualified for ministry. He even predicted how their children would turn out by how the parents were living. His predictions were 100% correct. Character should be the highest priority in life and ministry.

Don’t tell me about how great your gifts and anointing are when your marriage and children are out of order. Don’t tell me how you’re going to conquer the world but you can’t even conquer your lusts and addictions. Today it’s common for ministers to be caught in adultery or very unethical practices and continue on in ministry, and their pitifully poor followers continue to defend and worship them as gods and hold up their thou-shalt-not-judge card. Personally, I think the false concept of judgment is one of the deadliest in modern day Christendom. It is the reason for such a dirty and defiled version of Christian ministry. Paul knew judgment was in fact the key to keeping the church clean.

Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Do you not know that we shall judge angels? How much more, things that pertain to this life?  If then you have judgments concerning things pertaining to this life, do you appoint those who are least esteemed by the church to judge? (1 Cor. 6:2-4)

The least esteemed in the church to judge are those who say, thou shalt not judge.

This lack of righteous judgment should break our hearts and send us to our knees to pray for the sad state of much of the body of Christ. Why are we so driven by ungodly success and popularity? Why are we so mesmerized by celebrity style ministry, a stage, bright lights, and a microphone? Isn’t it because we don’t know Jesus very well at all. We have no private life with Him. We don’t know Him in the secret place.

By the inspiration of the Holy Spirit the apostle Paul outlined character qualities for those who aspire to leadership in the Church (1 Tim. 3:1-7). Ministers of the gospel and local pastors and elders need to familiarize themselves with these character qualities instead of being so driven by unscriptural success. Even deacons must possess certain character qualities to serve in the church, after first being tested and found blameless.

“But let these also first be tested; then let them serve as deacons, being found blameless” (1 Tim. 3:10).

Blameless! That means there is not to be found anything in his character that could be used against him. Why have we lowered this standard in the Church today?

People say, “Well, nobody is perfect.”

“We’re all flawed and have shortcomings.”

“You can’t be legalistic.”

And of course the infamous, “don’t judge…God is the judge.”

Why then are these character qualities listed in the Word? Paul gives us the reason:

“I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Tim. 3:15). 

Paul wanted to deeply impress upon young Timothy that the Church is the great defender of the truth in the world, and that the truth which the Church is to maintain is of utmost importance. One commentary says this: “This relates to the incarnation of the Son of God, and to the work which he accomplished on earth (v. 16)–a work which excited the deepest interest in heaven, and the true doctrine respecting which it was of the utmost importance to keep up among people.”  This great truth is further elaborated on in the next chapter (1 Tim. 4), by showing that the time would come when, under the influence of Satan, these great doctrines would be denied, and the truth would be corrupted and perverted. We are living in that time.

These character qualities are so basic and foundational to Church leadership that it amazes me how far we’ve drifted from them in the Church today. I’m concerned about young ministers today who rise to publicity and popularity so quickly. Many of them are like shooting stars, here one day and gone the next. It’s better to be a shining star and just keep shining day after day through transformed character, not gifts and talents. Many are mistaking gifts and talents for God’s approval and qualifications for ministry. No, gifts and talents are the equipping for the calling. God equips us through His gifts and anointing, but we qualify ourselves through character. If we don’t prioritize character we will be candidates for deception.

During my aforementioned 2002 season of extended prayer one rhema word from Jesus changed my life. He said, “The reason I’ve not opened the doors that you thought should’ve been opened is because of My protection. The deception would’ve increased in you had I opened those doors, and you would’ve ceased to be a man after My own heart.” I wept like a baby when I heard Him say that, and His love overwhelmed me when I realized He was protecting me from myself.

Then He brought me to a place when I didn’t desire public ministry any more but only to know His heart and ways and to be obedient to His will. It was a miracle of great transformation because of the mystery of iniquity that is prevalent in man’s heart.

God is always ready to use us in great ways according to His calling on our lives, but often we are not ready and qualified by character. We will shoot ourselves and blow up His perfect plan and purpose for us. Listen to the wise words of Kathryn Kuhlman:

“I looked up and said audibly “Oh dear Jesus, why didn’t you allow all of this to happen to me when I was sixteen years of age? I never got tired in body, I could ride those buses all night and then preach all day. Why didn’t you let this all happen to me when I didn’t need sleep? Why did you wait so long wonderful Jesus? There wasn’t an audible voice, but He did speak to me and this is what He said.

“Kathryn, had I given it to you then, you would have blown the whole thing!!” I knew exactly what He meant.”

The Father knows best. Work on your character and let Him bring forth the fullness of His will in His own timing.

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BEWARE OF MODERN “APOSTOLIC ALIGNMENT” ERROR

This article is being published in honor of Rev. Mel Montgomery who recently departed to be with the Lord. Mel had a passion for reforming Charismatic doctrine and restoring the genuine flow of the Holy Spirit to the Church today. We shared this common passion and became spiritual friends as a result. I’ve taken the liberty to edit his article and make minor grammatical corrections. You can visit his website and familiarize yourself with old recordings of true ‘Word and Spirit’ pioneers of the faith that will enrich your life:  brothermel.org 

Some time ago Charisma News published an article in favor of “Apostolic Alignment”- the error that claims you need to come under an apostle to stay in alignment with heaven’s order. Here was my response:

Hmmm. . . “Apostolic alignment . . . keeps us out of error.” Well then, how did the error-saturated travesty known as the “Lakeland Revival” occur?

Ten of the greatest “apostles” and “prophets” of the New Apostolic Reformation and the New Prophetic Move flew down to Lakeland and “aligned” Todd Bentley. They whipped out their apostolic authority, praised Todd’s “purity” and “integrity”, and prophesied that the Lakeland “Revival” would increase and spread around the world, ushering in the return of Christ. Peter Wagner declared Todd Bentley to be properly “aligned.” Then two weeks later, the revival collapsed in sexual scandal, financial scandal, and revelations of an attempted cover up. Far from keeping Todd or anyone else out of error, the “apostles” and “prophets” were in partnership with Todd’s errors, some even going so far as to attempt to cover up his sin.

If I remember the account correctly, Charisma magazine sent someone down to investigate the revival and its claims of 17  people being raised from the dead, and countless healings and miracles. The investigator could not document even one single healing taking place, much less 17 people being raised from the dead (he did document that Todd Bentley kicked someone’s tooth out. However, we were never told if the man came forward to have his tooth healed). Todd and his staff became unresponsive to the investigator, specifically requesting that he not ask any more questions.

The investigator reported the facts to Charisma (and I commend Charisma for actually ascertaining the facts rather than falling for the falsehoods peddled by so many major Charismatic leaders). After reporting to Charisma, since the investigator had personal relationships with several of these so-called apostles and prophets, he contacted and met with some of them. He told them the facts he had uncovered of sexual misconduct, financial misconduct, false claims of miracles, and so on.

So . . . the apostles told him to expose it all, right? They put on sackcloth and ashes and wailed over the hoax that had deceived so many and brought disrepute to the gospel of Jesus Christ, right? LOL!. Nope. Instead, those he spoke with urged him to cover it all up and not expose any of it. Then within days, knowing what they knew, they flew down to Lakeland and proudly appeared with Todd on stage. They publicly praised Todd’s “integrity” and “purity,” gave him their apostolic “alignment” and then prophesied his continued success.

But, the jig was up. The investigator went ahead and exposed the lies and sin.

Hey, the track record for this whole “apostolic alignment” mess is not so good.  Corruption saturated groups of men in modern times who set themselves up as apostles and peddle such erroneous doctrines is nothing new. Pentecostal historian Keith Malcomson’s book, “Pentecostal Pioneers” documents the fact that there was a well developed apostolic network of churches that arose throughout Great Britain in the 1920’s, 1930’s, and 1940’s.

WIGGLESWORTH AND OTHER PIONEERS OF THE FAITH WOULD HAVE NONE OF IT

Members of Smith Wigglesworth’s Bowland Street mission began to agitate for Wigglesworth to bring his mission and ministry under this apostolic network. But Wigglesworth would have none of it. So some of his members split from his church and left, figuratively writing “Ichabod” over the door and declaring that God was finished with Smith Wigglesworth’s rebellion and refusal to come under “apostolic authority.” And Wigglesworth’s ministry collapsed, right? Hardly. He had some of his most productive years and anointed meetings after he refused to submit to so-called apostolic alignment.

What happened to the churches that aligned under the great apostolic mother church in Great Britain? The head “apostle” got off into deep error, and those churches that did not flee from “apostolic alignment” went into error too. Eventually the network collapsed, just like Lakeland. Rather than keeping anyone out of error, these two major apostolic alignment catastrophes actually partnered with, led into, or attempted to cover up, error and sin.

Smith Wigglesworth, Stanley Frodsham, Howard Carter, WFP Burton, David Du Plessis, Maria Woodworth-Etter, Aimee Semple McPherson, and many other early Pentecostals were well aware of this exaggeration of the apostolic ministry and not only did they not come under “apostolic alignment,” they absolutely refused to hold meetings for any church that was a part of it.

Since then, think of all of the major Evangelical, Pentecostal, and Charismatic ministers who never placed themselves under any so-called “apostle.” They never experienced “apostolic alignment.” How did their ministries turn out? Judge for yourself. A partial list would include: Kathryn Kuhlman, Oral Roberts, Kenneth Hagin, Lester Sumrall, T. L. Osborn, and even Billy Graham. Yes, Billy Graham. He sure went off into error and his ministry never amounted to anything without Apostolic Alignment!

Apostolic Alignment? No thank you. I’ll stick with Wigglesworth’s position on this error.

Our books are forerunners to personal holiness, the move of God, and the return of the Lord. They also combat the departure from the faith and the turning away from the truth we are seeing in our day. 

KEY TO CLEANSING THE LATTER HOUSE: JUDGMENT AND THE FEAR OF THE LORD

I believe there is no other way the modern day Church will be cleansed from all its hypocrisy and impurities derived from the worship  of mammon, except through judgment that produces the fear of the Lord. It may come through hardship, death, or even a crisis of massive proportions such as a civil war to bring this about. The landscape of Christianity must be cleansed, so that the Church’s impact can be much more far reaching. Without widespread and deep repentance and awakening,  this may be the only solution and remedy to the current idolatrous condition of the church world. The power and glory of God may not be restored to the Church any other way. We are so far gone and numb to the true condition of the nation and the Church that this may be the only remedy to true restoration (see this recent article by my friend Michael L. Brown – How Can We Be So Numb?). A severe shaking may be our last line of hope.

Let’s take a close look at the first miracle of judgment in the early Church that cleansed it immediately of the sin and hypocrisy that was seeking entrance. This judgment kept it strong and pure and increased its power and impact.

“In hearing these words, Ananias fell down and died. And great fear came on all those who heard these things” (Acts 5:5).

“At once she (Sapphira) fell down at his feet and died. Upon entering, the young men found her dead and carried her out and buried her beside her husband. Great fear came on the entire church and on all those who heard these things. Many signs and wonders were performed among the people by the hands of the apostles. And they were all together in Solomon’s Porch. No one else dared join them, but the people respected them. Believers were increasingly added to the Lord, crowds of both men and women” (Acts 5:10-14).

Can you see how this cleansing led to increased fear and power with many believers being added to the Lord?

We often forget these portions of Scripture and how this judgment produced the component of the fear of the Lord, which stopped this lie and other impurities from having access into the early Church, thus preserving its white hot purity and keeping it from being defiled. This miracle of judgment contributed to the glory, power, and growth of the early Church. Notice also the effect it had on the people:

“No one else dared join them (the disciples), but the people respected them” (Acts 5:13).

The Message Bible says it this way: “But even though people admired them a lot, outsiders were wary about joining them. On the other hand, those who put their trust in the Master were added right and left, men and women both.”

Could these incidents of judgment in the early Church be a type and shadow of what we may expect in the last days Church in both the coming judgment and glory:

Could it be that preachers who have peddled the word of God for gain have their ministries judged and some even be publicly humiliated and taken out of the way?

Could churches and ministries that have been built on compromise and the wisdom of man see a mass exodus as people begin to seek pure truth and authenticity as well as the reality of the Holy Spirit and the power of God?

Could we see organizations and companies who have used their power and wealth to persecute the righteous be shaken and some big CEO’s even die? Could we also see the same type of judgement on leaders of nations who persecute the glorious Church and do not give glory to God (think of king Herod; Acts 12:23)?

I believe we will see these kind judgments again but only as the glory increases and is restored to the true Church.

POLARIZATION: ONE EFFECT OF GOD’S JUDGMENTS AND THE FEAR OF THE LORD

The judgment that fell on Ananias and Sapphira caused sinners to be leery of joining themselves to the apostles and the church while at the same time gaining public respect and influence. This divided or polarized those who were not interested in genuine repentance and living whole-heartedly for the Lord from the multitudes that were being genuinely converted and being added to the church. Oh how we need this work done today in this era of postmodern and so called progressive Christianity! It would root out so much complacency, carnality, and compromise.

The dividing line was very distinct in the early Church. In a day when we are trying to include everyone into our sheepfolds by toning down on the demands of the gospel, there was a certain exclusivity that the judgments of God and the fear of the Lord produced in the Church’s earliest beginnings. People couldn’t enter in with sin in their lives. In many places today, it is difficult to tell the difference between the Christian and non-Christian, but not in the early Church. God wants to restore this polarization in the Church of today.

This is an excerpt from my newest book awaiting its release, THE CLEANSING OF THE TEMPLE, RESTORING THE GLORY TO THE LATTER DAY CHURCH. 

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GREAT ENCOURAGEMENT AND WARNING FROM SMITH WIGGLESWORTH FOR THESE END OF DAYS

Here is the word that was given by Smith Wigglesworth to Lester Sumrall in 1939.

Smith Wigglesworth to Lester Sumrall in 1939 (WWII ready to break out):  With tears rolling down his face Smith cried saying,

“I probably won’t see you again now. My job is almost finished.” As he continued to pray he cried, “I see it, I see it!”
Brother Sumrall asked, “What do you see, what do you see?”

He said, “I see a healing revival coming right after World War II. It’ll be so easy to get people healed. I see it! I see it! I won’t be here for it, but you will be.” And there was a great healing revival right after the war.

He continued to prophesy, “I see another one, I see people of all different denominations being filled with the Holy Ghost.” That was the Charismatic renewal. God raised up movements and ministries during that era such as the Full Gospel businessmen.

Then Brother Wigglesworth prophesied again and said, “I see another move of God. I see auditoriums full of people, coming with notebooks. There will be a wave of teaching on faith and healing.” We did experience that wave he saw, and men called it the Word of Faith movement.

Then he prophesied farther into the future that we are in now, “After that, after the third wave,” he started sobbing. “I see the last day revival that’s going to usher in the precious fruit of the earth. It will be the greatest revival this world has ever seen! It’s going to be a wave of the gifts of the Spirit. The ministry gifts will be flowing on this planet earth. I see hospitals being emptied out, and they will bring the sick to churches where they allow the Holy Ghost to move.” Now that is super exciting!

SOBER WARNING

Wigglesworth also warned of the increasing spiritual darkness and gross darkness as well as false movements and doctrines of devils within the carnal and compromising church, such as the false grace message and false gospel.

“All the saints of God that get the real vision of this wonderful transformation are recognizing every day that the world is getting worse and worse and worse and ripening for judgment. And God is bringing us to a place where we that are spiritual are having  a clear vision that we must at any cost put off the works of darkness. We must be getting ourselves ready for that glorious day when we see Christ.

“These are the last days. What will be the strongest confirmation for me to bring to you the reality that we are living in the last days?

“There are in the church two classes. There are  believers which are disobedient, or I ought to say, there are children which are saved by the power of God which are still choosing to live as disobedient children. And then there are children which are just the same saved by the power of God, but who all the time are longing to be more obedient.

“In this fact, Satan has a great part to play. It is on this factor in these last years that some of us have been brought to great grief at the first opening of the door with the brazen fact to fleshly sinful forces. And we heard the word come rushing, like the wind to a “new theology” that is damnable, devilish, evil power that teaches you can be disobedient children, and still be right with God.

“As soon as this was noised abroad everywhere, this “new theology,” everybody began to say, ”What is this new theology?” It’s an absolute lie from the devil!”

We must be heed these serious warnings and be so ever watchful and prayerful in this hour.

The spirit of this age is to get you to believe a lie. If you believe a lie you cannot believe the truth. When once you are contaminated with a lie against the Word of God, He sends you strong delusion that you shall believe a lie. God’s Word is your only hope to be rescued from this deceiving spirit. God’s Word, which is being diminished and minimized by many in these evil days, is the final authority of truth for all times and for all ages.

When we see these things which are coming to pass, what do we know? We know the time is at hand. The fig tree is budding as we see these false prophets and these lying spirits increasing.

Let us stay strong in the truth of God’s Word and keep moving with the true manifestation of the Spirit in this final hour.

WE MUST FIND OUR WAY INTO THE HOLY OF HOLIES

We were in a missions prayer meeting recently and I heard these words:

“The Holy of Holies is the deepest part of My heart.”

As we were praying for unreached people groups I saw the faces representing all human beings that have ever lived on planet earth. I saw God’s great love for each one. I saw that He had made provision for all of them to live with Him forever. I saw the uttermost parts of the earth where many had not been reached or engaged with the gospel. I saw the great struggles of humanity. I saw them as if walking through a hot desert with a load of goods being carried on their backs. They were slumped over with weariness and heavy burdens of hardship. It broke my heart. I was seeing them the way God sees them.

Your own heart will break and melt, too when any aspect of the deepest part of God’s heart is unveiled to you. When His unfathomable love for humanity is revealed to you it turns you away from self-centeredness. You will take on more of the Lord’s nature as people start becoming the object of your love. You reach out to help them as meeting their needs becomes your joy. Your meat and drink is doing the will of the Father and finishing His work (John 4:34).

It is in those intimate moments in the Holy of Holies when the Lord speaks to you and teaches you His heart and ways that you are most alive. You are one with His heart. You burn with His fire when you hear His living word and the Scriptures are opened unto you.

“And they said one to another, did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?” (Lk. 24:32)

This is the greatest need of humanity. This is the greatest need of the Church—to know and actually feel God’s heart. In this way we are one with Him and we abide in Him. We are filled with His Spirit and the ministry of Jesus flows so naturally out of us, and His will is fulfilled in our lives. Once we receive God’s Spirit all of us have access into this secret place.

All of my life I’ve consciously or unconsciously been led to this place called the Holy of Holies. At times I didn’t know what it was that kept gnawing at me when I couldn’t find complete satisfaction and total fulfillment any other way. It was the Holy of Holies calling me in. It was the Holy Spirit wanting to get me in there. It is always our flesh that stands in the way and hinders us.

In the last several years of my life this has been my constant driving passion—to abide in the secret place. It is not necessarily a geographical place where you pray, but a place in your heart. It is there where you learn God’s ways and you become a friend of God. I am determined not to leave this earth until I learn to live as a friend of God every single day. It is my constant pressing as it was for Paul in his latter days.

“But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ” (Phil. 3:7-8).

The excellence of God’s holy intimate knowledge was Paul’s quest. This revelation led him to count all things loss and pursue a place of death to himself in order to gain Christ and His resurrection power.

“That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death…” (v. 10)

It also led him to this ongoing pressing attitude:

“…but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me…I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (v. 12, 14).

It is this pressing attitude that will lead you “to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God” (Eph. 3:19).

Oh beloved, to be filled with all the fullness of God is worth more than anything in this world. It is pure eternal ecstasy and heavenly bliss. Few of us have barely touched this realm.

Begin by praying in the Spirit quietly and reaching out in worship to God the Father of our spirits. Don’t be moved by the initial spiritual dryness. This is only evidence that the operation of your flesh has had ascendency over your spirit. It takes time to cultivate true spiritual fellowship and friendship with God where your spirit gains the ascendency.

Be assured that you can know the Father in a new dimension. His Son is the Bridegroom who is waiting for His Bride to awaken to this upward calling. And the Holy Spirit is always endeavoring to lead you into it.

May the cry of the Bride echo the desire of the Bridegroom to meet with us, ‘Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!’ (Mt. 25:1-13).

Beloved, it is the midnight hour. It is the last hour to purchase more oil and not be found wanting. It is the end of an age when many antichrists are in the world (1 Jn. 2:18). It is a day to read and ponder the last words of Scripture until our hearts resonate with the same cry as the Spirit—until all who hear and thirst for the water of life come and drink freely.

I believe it is then when our cry is heightened to meet the measure of His cry that He will come quickly.

Oh what a day that will be!

And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” “And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.” He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!” (Rev. 22:17, 20)

Our books are forerunners to personal holiness, the move of God, and the return of the Lord. They also combat the departure from the faith and the turning away from the truth we are seeing in our day. The Real Gospel, The Real Jesus, The Real Salvation, and  The Real Spirit Of Revivalare especially strategic in trumping the many falsehoods spreading in the modern day Church. If any of our books or articles on this blog are a blessing and encouragement to you please use the social media buttons below to share them.

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Thank you, and may God’s richest and best be yours.

THANK YOU BLOG READERS

I conducted a recent poll and I appreciate the responses of many of our readers. Your encouraging comments helped me to see the value that some of you still place on our Flaming Herald blog. 

Here are many of the comments I pieced together. 

“In this day and hour in which we live, there aren’t many voices out there like yours. Your messages have real spiritual meat in them and are filled with fire and passion.” G. B. 

“I get a lot out of your blogs…Way more than church.” K.P.

“I think the blogs are timely, a voice that addresses the state of the church today and teaches how to move the church forward. So many of us need that input because most of our churches are wanting in areas.” B.M.

“Maybe those of us who value the blog should “forward” it to friends more often for their edification and encourage them to subscribe and thereby increase readership and support.” B

“Often, you right a word that confirms just what I am hearing from the Lord and teaching to my Bible study groups.” D

“I’ve been going to church my whole life and can say that in the latter part of my churchgoing years can count on one hand the times that I have heard the pastor talked about hell, the end times, or encouraging us to get involved politically.” A

“For those of us who can’t find pastors to talk about topics like you do, we rely on online ministers to fill in the gaps.” A. L.

“I look forward with excitement to every article and share them with many and would be VERY DISAPPOINTED if you didn’t share.” M.H.

“thank you for your faithfulness in writing the blog, it has been a great blessing to me even confirming the word I have taught on – a number of times in the same week, which greatly encouraged and lifted me.” A pastor/Bible teacher

“Look forward to reading them and i share them with friends. I have read your books as well but i just purchase the rest of them.” J.C.

“As we know, there is a serious lack of truth being put out in our compromised culture (and Church) that we so need to hear, even be warned as you have! Personally, I’ve remembered points you’ve made, that continue to encourage me, and point me in the right way!” P.P.

“I love your blogs. I read them on my phone or at the library. Now I have the internet myself. I read all of them and forward some.” N.C.

“I read all of your articles. Your articles are stimulating and never boring and feed my spirit and I often pass these articles on to others, especially my wife, and with the Lord’s permission, I sometimes “steal” your main points when ministering to others.” K.J.

“Please keep writing the truth in love… you have been a life line for me..” C

“I know with you that I can get a clear perspective on things that are going on in our Christian community as it pertains to the Lord. Many out there have lost the pure teaching ability to teach on solid doctrine and it’s so watered down and even distorted. So I always hit your pages even if I don’t comment to see if my thinking is lining up with solid teaching.” C.S.

“I envy your writings and have stopped using the highlighter pen as I would end up highlighting most of it.” C.M.

“I do frequently read your blog. I think you are honest and have the courage to speak what the Holy Spirit directs you to share. You are a needed voice in God’s kingdom.” S

“Most people do not say it “the way it is”. I would miss this blog greatly. Do keep it up.” R.C.

“Yes, I’d feel disappointed if you discontinued the blog.” C.L.

Here’s one from Cyprus:

“You are one of the very few true prophetic voices that keep an open path to God’s heart and voice in these perilous days we live now.” A.A. 

Here’s one from a grandmother: 

“I read every blog and have copies of your books. Everything you write speaks volumes to me and brings hope and faith to a higher level. I save them often to reread and share…”

Here’s one that touched me deeply:

“I am so hungry and eager to learn and my only way is by reading. I can’t hear a pin drop- I’m deaf.” A.S.

Here’s one from British Columbia, Canada:

“We have limited access to “in person” contact with other like-minded believers. We are not currently attending any church because it appears that every church in our small city is wrapped up in the current wave of lukewarm and compromised “Christianity”. After struggling for many years, we finally gave up on going to a man-made institution that merely provides entertainment rather than Bible-based teaching. We rely on your blog, as well as a few other blogs, to help us keep a right perspective.” D & T

Here’s one from Africa:

“I have been challenged, motivated, corrected and confirmed by the “part” that God has entrusted you to release. And because of that, I see a greater “whole”. Thank you for your obedience in freely releasing your part. I live and travel in Africa, sometimes with little internet access.” M

Here’s one from Nigeria:

” I use your blogs in some of my sermons. By the way, I’m writing all the way from Nigeria.” P.M.

Here’s one from England:

“Actually I love reading your emails. They are full of passion and wisdom for the times we are in and personally challenging. I’ve also bought two of your books. I love watching the Holy Ghost Forums when they’re posted on YouTube. I love the way the Holy Spirit moves and speaks through you all. I’ve never seen anything like it. It stirs up my spirit, teaches me and increases my spiritual appetite for more.” N.H.

Thank you for encouraging me! I will continue. Please share these truths with others and on your social media pages.

Happy New Year to each of you!

FROM MY HEART: BLOG SURVEY

I’m a writer. I’ve been blogging consistently for five years. In that period of time I’ve written over 450 articles. As we enter the final week of 2018 I need to ask you the reader for some feedback because I’m praying and pondering  about stopping blogging altogether and perhaps focus on doing more videos in the coming year (understand that we also blog weekly for Charisma magazine). I’d appreciate if you took a few minutes of your time to respond to this survey.

There are a few hundred followers of this blog, but only 30-40% even open the email they receive from us. And that’s on a good day. Also, most never comment or interact in any way.

I’m not compensated for writing a blog. I don’t make any money with ads or anything like that. It doesn’t have enough views or visitors to even warrant consideration for that.

So here’s what I’m asking:

1. How often do you read this blog?

a) Almost every article

b) Often

c) Once in awhile or infrequently

d) Honestly, hardly at all

e) Never

2. What is the word that best describes the content of the articles you’ve read?

a) Stimulating and challenging, they feed my spirit

b) Too long

c) Boring and uninteresting

d) I actually save them to a file so I can refer to them again

e) Other

3. Would you feel any disappointment if we discontinued this blog?

a) Yes

b) Somewhat

c) No, not at all.

Additional Comments: