Category Archives: Prophetic Themes

Fifty Shades of Nausea

fiftyshadesThe newest demonic attempt to subjugate men and women by snaring them with perverse sexual hooks is breaking records across the United States as it aims for $500 million dollars worldwide. At the same time, since the Lord pays very close attention to such things, it is probably also sealing Hollywood’s fate. I was going to entitle this post Fifty Shades of Demonization, but I am so saddened by the fact that Satan has been able to use Hollywood to foist this video trojan horse on so many people, that I’m feeling a bit sick about it. The demonic influence, the hooks, that this movie will impart to those who are not already afflicted in this area, will cause them pain, confusion, and physical and mental heartache for years to come—and may accompany some to their death bed long after destroying the joys of their marriage bed.

Pornography, any pornography, is an attack against the marriage bed, and will bear bitter fruit decades beyond its experience (except for those who are delivered by God’s grace). It is a fruitless pit that has entrapped millions of men and women into a negative spiral that destroys relationships with both God and man. The fact that Hollywood has become so facile at packaging it in a form that is breaking records, only speaks to their culpability, and to their ultimate recompense.

Last night I had the pleasure of dining with a group of friends who lead other churches in my area. It is always an enjoyable time as we spend time growing together while sharing food. It was a great night in a lot of ways, except for one point that threatened my digestion. One of the pastors at the table brought up the fact that many of those who were helping make Fifty Shades of Depravity so successful, were Christians who attended our churches every weekend. I was, as the British are wont to say, gobsmacked. As several voices were raised in affirmation of his statement, I responded rather adamantly, “Not in my congregation.”

I couldn’t imagine. I just could not imagine. I know God’s people can be a mess as they grow up in him, but I also know how passionately the folks that I pastor are pursuing the Lord. They understand that they are to be in the world, but not of the world (see John 17:13-19). They understand that in the day we are living that the Lord has called us to waist deep commitment in him (see Ezekiel 47:3-6); that waist deep commitment involves sanctifying our sexual lives. They understand that if they want to be anything more than Satan’s plaything, someone he can torment at will, they will wear the breastplate of righteousness and thus, guard their hearts (see Ephesians 6:10-18). How could anyone who is pursuing the Lord with any level of energy put Fifty Shades of Deviance into their ear and eye gate? I still cannot imagine.

Don’t misunderstand, I can imagine how people who are playing church can do such things. I can imagine how those who are still infants, tossed back and forth by every wind of deceitful teaching can do such things. I can imagine how someone who hasn’t been taught about true grace and righteousness might do such things—or even those who are fighting demonic strongholds. I just cannot imagine how a Christian who is being sanctified by the Lord Jesus Christ through his Holy Spirit could easily do such things. The war, the anguish, the ripping away of peace, the groaning as our spiritual strength wastes away, these things that accompany rebellion make it all but impossible for a Christian to lightly step into something like this movie. I can imagine that there are Christians who are deceived into seeing Fifty Shades of Degeneracy because of their lack of spiritual growth and discernment, I just can’t imagine that there would be many, nor that it would be all that enjoyable an experience. If they have not totally seared their conscience, they would feel the cords of bondage wrapping around them as they partake of the putrid leavings of a degenerate director.

Obviously, I expect that most people who read this blog are not among those so deceived. However, if you have been thus deceived, there is forgiveness and deliverance available, it is as close as calling out to Jesus for his help. He truly has come to set us free from such bondage (see John 8:34-36). However, it always starts by recognizing our great error, and then focusing on his great grace. He cannot forgive excuses. He most heartily forgives repentance as he strengthens us for future victory.

As I wrote above, Fifty Shades of Debauchery may also be one final nail in Hollywood’s coffin. The Lord is so merciful, that when he was forced to send judgment on Sodom and Gomorrah because the outcry against them had reached heaven, he also put their sin on display so that those who could not hear the outcry would be able to see that his judgment was just. In much the same way, Fifty Shades of Degradation has now showcased how adept Hollywood has become at packaging the most depraved material for a mass audience. It has become a master at causing many to stumble. As a result, I can hear echoes of Jesus’ words reverberating through the atmosphere:

But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.
(Matthew 18:6)

If those pastors who voiced their opinion that many Christians are stumbling into this movie are right, I would expect to see a divine response ere long. My hope is that they are absolutely wrong.

Kyrie eleison!

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Aging is Indeed a Disease

timelineAs I have chewed on the concept of time, I have considered how something that was intended to bless us has become a harbinger of disease and death. In Eden, before the Fall, time would have passed without negative impact on Adam or Eve. Ten thousand years might have passed, and Adam and Eve would have looked and felt as they had on day one. Time, as it was created, did no harm to human beings. While the passage of time would have brought the young to maturity and robust adult life, the maturation process would have stopped there.

Of course, that is not the case since Adam and Eve fell. The passage of time now can wreak havoc on the human body. Although the elderly only made up 13% of the population of the United States in 2010, their medical care was 34% of the overall health care expenditures that year. As people age, it is normal in this fallen world that their health fails.

If you look up the word disease in the dictionary, you will find a definition like this one from Merriam-Webster online: a condition that prevents the body or mind from working normally. If normal is the state of being that we attain at full maturity, it is obvious that aging is most certainly a disease. As we age, our bodies no longer do the same things that they were capable of doing at the age of twenty-five when, for the most part, our bodies worked normally. The aging process often prevents the body or mind from working normally.

We must understand and embrace this concept if we ever want to overcome it. We have little power over the things we accept as normal in our lives. If we believe increasing limitation is normal for a Christian, we will never strive to overcome it. We will counsel the elderly to accept their lot, taking Solomon’s description of the aging process as normative, quoting the words of wisdom from Ecclesiastes about how to adjust to our “under the sun” existence (see Ecclesiastes 12:1-7).

And while we may think it is wise to accept our condition, we live in a far different covenant than Solomon did. We live in the Kingdom, and it advances as forceful people take hold of it. Jesus once called his disciples and “gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every kind of disease and every kind of sickness” (Matthew 10:1 NASB). Jesus’ disciples were given authority to heal every kind of disease and sickness. Old age is a disease. Many of the maladies that the disciples healed, without any doubt, were maladies brought on by old age. In the same way that Jesus freed a woman who had been bound by a demonically imposed arthritic disease for eighteen years (see Luke 13:10-14), they also would have freed the elderly from the diseases that bound them.

Since our King doesn’t change, and since we carry his authority (see Matthew 16:19 and Matthew 18:18f.), he stills sends his disciples to take on this scourge. When he stated that signs would follow those who believed, he included sickness and disease. That means that he has given us authority over old age.

But here is the important point: We will not pray against aging unless we recognize it as the disease that it truly is.

Aging is a manifestation of death in our lives. It is our enemy. The Lord had warned Adam that in the day he rebelled, there would be consequences. “For in the day you eat, dying you will die” (Genesis 2:17b My Translation). Most translations render the infinitive absolute as, “you will surely die.” That is certainly an appropriate way to translate an infinite absolute. However, it is also legitimate to translate it as I have. The Hebrew literally states, “Dying, you will die.” The Lord was warning Adam of death in all of its implications, including the aging process. When Adam disobeyed, death began to reign, and humanity began to age. However, the second Adam has defeated death. We are now in the process of overcoming it. Every healing, every resurrection, every prayer for good health is applying Christ’s victory against our enemy, death.

The apostle Paul wrote of Jesus, “For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death” (1 Corinthians 15:25-26 NIV). While Christ has defeated death already, we are in the process of applying his victory to our world. We, as his Body, are putting all his enemies under his feet. We will have reached maturity, and Christ will return, after we have placed death under his feet. It is the last enemy to be overcome.

If Moses, who lived under a covenant of death (see 2 Corinthians 3:7-11), overcame aging, how much more should we, who live under the covenant of life, strive to overcome it? The mandate to overcome death in all its forms is not a part of the covenant Moses initiated. But that mandate is most certainly is in our covenant.

How can we overcome it, if we aren’t even trying?

If Dylan Thomas had been a theologian, and understood that the Kingdom advances as forceful people push forward, he might have phrased his famous verse this way:

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and flame at close of day;
Pray, pray against the dying of the light.

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Super Bowl Visions and Dreams

footballSo, a guy that had a dream encounter with Jesus at the age of fourteen, throws an interception to a guy who had a vision that he was going to make a big play. If this type of thing happens in future Super Bowl games, we will eventually be calling it the Super Vision Bowl rather than the Super Bowl.

Even though I would have preferred that another Christian quarterback would have been facing the Patriots this evening (you know, the discount double-check guy), I was happy that another Christian gentleman was getting a chance to increase his stature, and thus increase his influence. Who knew that a lowly butler was going to intervene and turn it all upside down? Oh, it wasn’t a butler, it was Malcolm Butler. And in a post game interview he stated that he had a vision that showed him he would make a big play. He said he was blessed, He pointed to heaven to give glory to God. And he told his interviewer that he could not explain it.

When such revelatory themes are in play, I like to sit back and check if God might be saying something. When I do that in this case, I like the fact that the Patriots won for thematic reasons. If God is sending a message through the outcome of a game, I want the Patriots to win. Period. I believe it is time for spiritual patriots to win. I believe God has communicated that in other forms, and the Super Bowl would be an obvious emphasis of that message.

However, I don’t assume there is a message in every Super Bowl. But when dreams of Jesus that lead to young man’s salvation, and visions of big plays are openly on display, I have to think about it. Might there be a message?

If I was looking for a message, I would remember the most well-known biblical butler. That is the one that Joseph met in prison. That butler had a revelatory encounter also. Joseph told him that Pharaoh would lift up his head in three days. That is exactly what happened (see Genesis 40). The butler’s position was restored, and he returned to his position at Pharaoh’s side.

Perhaps there is a message, and perhaps it is as obvious as that. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to see the heads of the true spiritual patriots lifted up in three days? It is time for resurrection power to come forth after three long days in the tomb. It is just about time for those who have been seeking to bring this country back to truth to see God move on their behalf. It is just about time for God’s people to step out of the darkness of defeat into the light of revival fire.

I, honestly, was not excited about a Patriot’s win, until I heard Malcolm Butler’s words. Then I sensed that God was up to something. I don’t pretend this short post contains the fullness of the intended meaning. But perhaps it is time to lift up our heads, for our redemption is drawing near.
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Hold On To Your Plates

platesIn a visionary experience recently, the Lord showed Dawn a large number of plates. Some were breaking. Some were colliding. Some were melting. Some were rotating a little. Some were not doing anything. Then she heard, “There is going to be a major shift in some plates. Hold on to your plate really tight. Don’t let it move.”

After this, she saw many, many plates that no one was holding. She also saw one plate on to which someone was holding tightly.

Of course, you know that this vision isn’t about dinnerware. This vision is about plate tectonics and our intercessory responsibility to bring protection to the tectonic plate each of us inhabits. While this might sound like a tall order, it is well within the realms of authority that Jesus has given to his Church. He has given us the keys of Kingdom authority. Whatever we bind on earth is also bound in heaven. That means that heaven backs up our intercessory decree with its power. Earthquakes are a part of the “whatever” that Jesus spoke about. We have authority to bind them.

There is some disagreement among the various schools of science, but most recognize fifteen basic tectonic plates divided into two categories (major and minor). Some scientists believe their are seven major plates and eight minor, while others see eight major and seven minor. There are also tertiary plates, sometimes called micro plates, that are still being discovered. Depending on your source, you will find that they have discovered somewhere between forty and sixty of those. That adds up to a lot of plates, and helps us understand that our particular plate, our particular area of intercessory responsibility, might not be as large as we might first think.

In any case, this vision contains a challenge. Many of us don’t think that we live in earthquake zones, so we don’t think about interceding against earthquakes. Those of you who do live in earthquake zones often pray diligently, and must continue to pray in order to hold down your plate. In view of the fact that Dawn was told about a major shift in the plates, it is probably important that we all spend some time exercising intercessory authority over the plates under our own feet, as well as adding our prayers to those who live in earthquake prone areas.

Even in seismologically stable South Florida, we have learned to pray against earthquakes. As long time readers of this blog know, our congregation holds special prayer meetings at the beginning of every hurricane season to pray against destructive winds. Of course, since we are already establishing hedges against storms, and since we are flatlanders, we also make certain that those hedges protect us against storm surge and tsunamis. One year the Lord spoke to us about asteroids/meteors, and so we added threats from above to our intercession. Then it didn’t seem right to be covering every direction but below our feet, so we started to cover everything below, including sinkholes and earthquakes. In order to avoid mission creep and dilute our intercession, we haven’t spent a lot of time on earthquakes or sinkholes at our hurricane prayer meetings. However, commensurate to the risk, we are probably spending just about the right amount of time.

The Lord has given this vision as an encouragement for all of us to take authority over the plate under our feet. He has also given it as a warning that we should expect a major shift. Our job is to make certain that any shift does not bring destruction to our area of influence.

Even if earthquakes are not a major concern in our geographical area, it is important that we recognize the times in which we live, and begin to take authority over the unforeseen. I do not believe that it needs to become a major focus in our intercession, simply because most of us have more presenting issues upon which to focus. But I do believe that we need to nail our plates down like never before. In higher risk areas, this will become a much more major area of focus. In lower risk areas, it will not take up as much intercessory time. But no matter our risk, I believe we have been given a directive. I suspect that we would be wise to heed it.
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Have a blessed, happy, and unshakeable Christmas!
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The Cuban Deep Freeze Thaws

19449596_sThe Lord plans that Cuba be open. He plans that it prospers economically. Most importantly, he plans that an amazing revival sweep across that island nation and beyond to the world. When we understand this, we can easily see that President Barack Obama’s moves yesterday to normalize relationship with Cuba fit into the Lord’s plans.

At this time, there is much ink being spilled, both pro and con, over our president’s actions. I cannot begin to assess the benefit or detriments that his moves will have on the United States. I can say that his actions fit firmly into what the Lord has shown us about Cuba. Whether his actions flow in accord with the permissive will of God, or whether they are the Lord’s express intention for this time, remain to be seen. However, since the Lord works out all things according to his will, this move on our president’s part will help Cuba even further on the path toward its revival destiny.

For more information about what the Lord has shown us about Cuba, you can read my previous posts HERE, HERE, and HERE. If you read those posts, it will help you tune out the howls of outrage directed at our president’s action, as well as also muting the cheers of admiration from his supporters. We want to understand what the Lord is doing when such major shifts in history occur. The pundits and the rest of the press will usually grind their specific political ax over such events. I would rather discern what the Lord is saying.

To that end, I will keep my ear to the ground, and also observe what the Lord is showing to other proven prophetic voices. If he shows me more, I will let you know. In the meantime, we can all respond to the tremors that are shaking history by seeking the Lord for understanding of them.
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