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Category Archives: Fear

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One morning about a year ago, I awoke hearing a Scripture verse in my spirit: “Therefore, do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward.” (Heb 10:35)

Then, I was reading in George W. Bush’s autobiography, the chapter on Afghanistan, less than a month after the conflagrations the President ordered began there, the media and some pacifist politicians were unjustly and unwisely already beginning to cast doubt and aspersions regarding the mission, evoking the “Q-word” — likening the scenario to a Vietnam-like “quagmire.” The President went around the room at the next NSC meeting and asked every member, who were a mix of advisers, cabinet officials, and top military commanders:

‘I just want to make sure that all of us DID agree on this plan, right?’ They all agreed.

I assured the team that we had the right strategy. Our plan was well conceived. Our military was capable. Our cause was just. We shouldn’t give in to second-guessing or let the press panic us. ‘We’re going to stay confident and patient, cool and steady,’ I said.

I could sense the relief in the room. The experience reminded me that even the most accomplished and powerful people sometimes need to be reassured.

The truth of that last sentence seized my attention, and made me think of the application of that statement to commanders in God’s Army—ministers commissioned as field commanders in the war of the ages against “the prince of the power of the air.” Even the most accomplished and powerful people sometimes need to be reassured. In the “City of the living God,” “The Heavenly Jerusalem,” i.e., the Church, Mount Zion from above (cf., Heb. 12:22; Rev. 14:21), God speaks to His people not through presidents, but prophets, and above all else, including when on first hearing or on the surface it does not sound or seem to be so, the message of the prophet is one of edification, exhortation, and encouragement “to men,” in particular (1 Cor. 14:3). Continue reading “Don’t Throw Away Your Confidence!” »

Elmer GantryI am constantly asked, “Chuck, why don’t pastors take a stand and speak out?” I’ve been a pastor most of my adult life. I believe I am qualified to answer that question. Here is the stark reality: the vast majority of pastors today are “success” oriented. Beginning in Bible College or seminary, and continuing throughout a pastor’s ministerial life, the emphasis is success. And that means church growth, larger congregations, bigger buildings, bigger offerings, burgeoning statistics, greater notoriety, denominational praise, invitations to speak at conferences, applause from fellow ministers, not to mention the financial perks and benefits that come with pastoring a “successful” church.

And the way to learn how to build a successful church is to learn from those who have done it. Pastors regularly attend church growth conferences to learn from the “big” church pastors on how it’s done. They purchase books, magazines, newsletters, etc., that are all geared towards telling pastors how to build a successful church. They are constantly being schooled in the latest and greatest “how to” strategies of church growth and success. This usually entails more and more sophisticated programs, music, sound, lighting, atmosphere, classes, seminars, organization, etc. Everything, and I mean everything, is geared toward success as described in the aforementioned paragraph.

Most pastors today are in reality not spiritual shepherds as much as they are corporate CEOs. The same mentality, philosophy, and strategy that drive corporate boardrooms also drive the boardrooms of modern churches — to a tee. Pastors act like CEOs, dress like CEOs, talk like CEOs, manage like CEOs, and think like CEOs. Continue reading “Cowardly PC Pastors and Why They Won’t Take A Stand” »

By David Wilkerson

As the economies of the nations shake and crumble, fear is mounting worldwide. We are seeing Jesus’ words come to pass: “Upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity… men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken” (Luke 21:25-26).

Christ has given us a warning here: “Without hope in me, multitudes will die of fright at the things they see coming.” Continue reading “Freedom From Fear” »

By Leonard Ravenhill

Peter in prison! What a jolt!

We are too far removed from the actual scene to catch the atmosphere of dismay the Christians of that day felt.

Peter had moved from Pentecost to prison, from jeers to spears. He was guarded by sixteen soldiers. One wonders why such a defenseless man needed such a group to watch him. Could it be that Herod feared the supernatural, seeing he knew that Jesus escaped such a group that guarded Him?

Had Peter been hedged in by sixteen hundred soldiers, the problem would not have been increased nor the escape less sure. Peter was bound not only by two chains, but also by the thick walls of the prison, by the three wards of the prison, and finally by an iron gate.

When Peter is in prison, does the church organize a plan to get him released? No. When Peter is jailed, do the believers offer a plea to Herod or suggest a price to offer the lawmakers for his freedom? No. Peter had released others at the hour of prayer; now others must believe for his release. Continue reading “Faith Laughs at Impossibilities” »

On 31 October, spooky beings and superheroes, cartoon characters and rubberized celebrities will line the streets and mall hallways of America anticipating sugary rewards. Compelled by shouts of “TRICK OR TREAT,” children of all ages will tote receptacles of various size and weight harboring the result of the nights hunt. It’s called Halloween, and while for most it is a harmless annual activity, its roots run deep in ancient paganism.

ALL HALLOWS’ EVE, or Halloween, originated in the 7th century AD. It was celebrated on 13 May and was a night for remembering deceased saints and martyrs. The date was later changed to November 1 in order to Christianize the pagan holidays Beltane and Samhain—festivals of summer, winter and fire.

James Frazer, in The Golden Bough, said, “throughout Europe, Hallowe’en, the night which marks the transition from autumn to winter, seems to have been of old the time of year when the souls of the departed revisited their homes in order to warm themselves by the fire.” Such ghosts walked the countryside retrieving offerings of food and drink (the treat) supplied by living family members. Darker forces roamed the night as well. Demons, hobgoblins, witches on broomstick, all haunting the night with acts of mischief (the trick). Continue reading “Happy Halloween?” »

Tricks Only No Treats -- The Real Truth about HalloweenFor more than half a century the debate has continued in American churches regarding if it is right or wrong for believers to participate in Halloween. The tragedy of the enduring controversy, however, is that the issues of overriding importance regarding Halloween are overlooked in the heat of the debate and almost never discussed even among anti-Halloween believers. Those oft forgotten issues are my focus in this article.

At the outset, I want to make it clear that I’m really not addressing my comments to unbelievers or those claiming to be agnostics or atheists, but rather to believers. My goal here is not to debate this matter with unbelievers, but rather to appeal to believers to consider some matters rarely taken into account. Continue reading “Tricks Only; No Treats! The Real Truth About Halloween” »

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