REVIVAL THAT MATTERS

We know the times are evil.  What can we do about it?  That’s the number one question I get.  My answer is, we need a deliberate attempt at revival.  We need to seize a revival that matters.

Many of the things the church is doing today simply do not matter.  I am not saying they are not good, or impressive or successful—I am saying they will not save the nation, and therefore, they do not matter.

But the real culprit today is false revival.  There is untold damage when we take a good meeting and marketing it as revival.  To call a good meeting revival is like filling a bath tub with salt water and calling it the Pacific Ocean.

I am not the one telling you your good meeting is not revival—history, and our culture tell you.  History says revival overflows church walls and makes deep impacts on society.  That is not happening.   When our culture swats away our church meetings and continues to careen in deeper wickedness—it’s telling us we are not in revival.

There is one thing—above all others—that is stopping true revival: We can’t find a pure motive.  We want it for all the wrong reasons.  If revival is our ticket to get church growth, emotional experiences, self-promotion, formulas, and wealth, our prayers are like nuclear waste to God.

The most famous verse on revival begins with a huge IF:  2 Chronicles 7:14 “if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

IF you truly yearn for the miracle that would stop America’s slide toward oblivion—IF you wish for an act of the Holy Spirit so real and widespread that it impacts, crime, injustice, addiction, and despair—then listen to this lesson from history:

In 1904, American leaders were enthralled by the revival in Wales.  Hundreds of thousands were converted, and the morals of the nation were transformed.  They wanted a revival like that in America.  But they tried to buy it.

These enterprising pastors and businessmen invested in massive campaigns.  They were dismal failures.  So much so, that the very concept of revival fell into disfavor.

Two years later, they realized their mistake.  Widespread brokenness gripped leaders.  Now, aided by a pure motive they cried out and heaven heard them.   One of the catalysts to this awakening was James Burns.

James Burns wrote a powerful book at the time entitled “Revival, Their Laws and Leaders” In 1909 he said, “To the church, a revival means humiliation, a bitter knowledge of unworthiness and an open and humiliating confession of sin on the part of her ministers and people. It is not the easy and glorious thing many think it to be, who imagine it fills pews and reinstates the church in power and authority.

 “It comes to scorch before it heals; it comes to condemn ministers and people for their unfaithful witness, for their selfish living, for their neglect of the cross, and to call them to daily renunciation, to an evangelical poverty and to a deep and daily consecration. That is why a revival has ever been unpopular with large numbers within the church. Because it says nothing to them of power such as they have learned to love, or of ease, or of success; it accuses them of sin, it tells them they are dead, it calls them to awake, to renounce the world and to follow Christ.”

America, at last, had found a pure motive for revival. New York, Chicago, Los Angeles (Azusa Street), and many other cities saw amazing things.  Denver, Colorado, and Portland, Oregon (Which are bastions of marijuana, atheism and runaway liberalism today) shut down businesses at noon so everyone could go and pray.  Millions went to prayer everyday across America.

Until our knees buckle beneath the horror of our nation’s sin and the blasphemy of our cheap grace fad our request for revival will be denied.  On the other hand, there is a great hope.

Two things happened to me that forever killed my doubts about revival.  One was Matthew 12: 20 A bruised reed He will not break, And smoking flax He will not quench,
Till He sends forth justice to victory.”  The other was when I was standing at the beach.

Jesus will not snuff out the least flicker of revival.  When anyone asks for revival from a pure heart, God says yes and begins the process.  He takes you at your word.  As I stood on the beach the gentle foam of the ocean lapped over my toes.  The voice of the Lord said, “this gentle wave is the cousin of the tsunami.”

The smallest flame in the smallest church will not be quenched by Jesus.  Given the proper opportunity, the Spirit of God will fan it into a raging fire of righteousness.  The gentlest wave can grow into a tidal wave before anyone who simply hosts God’s presence, obeys His step by step orders, and refuses to abuse what God is doing among them.

These two truths are exploding with me now.  I want them to blow up in your spirit.  exploded within me.  You really want revival?  Then what are you waiting for?

THE WORD OF THE LORD FOR THIS HOUR

 

Facebook oozes with voices claiming to be prophets or mouthpieces for God.   The internet teems with self-appointed prophets who scream to be heard, bombarding us with “prophetic words.”  Almost all these prophecies shout one of two headlines: AMERICA IS PAST HOPE AND WILL BE DESTROYED.  AMERICA IS FAVORED AND WILL NEVER BE DESTROYED.

The Word of The Lord for this Hour

By Mario Murillo

Facebook oozes with voices claiming to be prophets or mouthpieces for God.   The internet teems with self-appointed prophets who scream to be heard, bombarding us with “prophetic words.”  Almost all these prophecies shout one of two headlines: AMERICA IS PAST HOPE AND WILL BE DESTROYED.  AMERICA IS FAVORED AND WILL NEVER BE DESTROYED.

So, what is the word of the Lord for this hour?  Now hear the word of the Lord!

To autonomously pronounce judgement is to play God.  Doomsdayers are calling off the attack against evil when God has not.  They are sounding a false retreat.  They are making evangelism futile.  They are helping put souls in hell by discouraging soul-winners.

Don’t lie to yourself.  Don’t make up prophecies of judgement just because you are mad at the church.  Face it!  Your righteous indignation may be nothing more than a personal grudge that your ministry was rejected by the church.

However, the great danger is not an abundance of prophets of doom.  It is the false prophets of grace and entitlement who are most dangerous.

In a wonderful book entitled The American Miracle written by Michael Medved, we see astounding and undeniable examples of God stepping in when America seemed beyond hope.  However, these examples are not proof that judgement won’t come.  To assume this is sheer madness.

I want to use George Washington as an example of something that desperately needs to be said to the American church.  Washington died because of medical malpractice.  Back then doctors believed in bleeding sick patients.  Washington was already weak from his sickness—by taking blood out, the doctors made him weaker and finally killed him.  It was the worst thing they could have done.

Listen church!  Cheap grace is bleeding an already weakened church.   It helps set us up for national destruction.   For Satan, this the perfect theology.   Instead of a life-giving conviction and a robust will to fight—this perversion induces drowsiness and apathy.

Why do you think so any of our pastors are closet alcoholics and addicted to porn?  And what can you expect a poisoned vessel to preach on Sunday morning?

Past miracles don’t guarantee future mercy.  They should awaken urgency, overpowering gratitude, humility, and profound soul searching.  Throwing ourselves off the cliff of morality to prove the power of Grace tempts God and provokes wrath.

God is trying to show us the times and what to do: 1 Chronicles 12: 32 “of the sons of Issachar who understood the times, to know what Israel ought to do.” The entire chapter lists the military talent of each tribe of Israel.  This gift was Issachar’s weapon

Next, “prophets” who say America will be destroyed or who say America cannot be destroyed are dead wrong.  We are neither pardoned nor condemned.  Our fate has not yet been decided.

We are living in a moment of mercy: HOW SOON WE FORGET!  We were spared the horror of Hillary—the finishing touch of Obama’s death spiral—a permanently enslaving national debt—A Supreme Court chaining us to anti-God laws, freedom-killing environmentalism—open borders bringing perpetual Democratic control, crime and terrorism.

Trump’s election was a miracle meant to ignite the church.  His time is Washington will be short, ineffective and we will end up worse off than ever if the church fails to obey God.

Trump has had missteps as president.  This does not mean he was not the right choice.  We dare abandon him so soon!  He needs our prayers.  He needs our support.

Here are the precise verses for this hour:  Ezra 9:  8 “And now for a little while grace has been shown from the Lord our God, to leave us a remnant to escape, and to give us a peg in His holy place, that our God may enlighten our eyes and give us a measure of revival in our bondage. 9 For we were slaves. Yet our God did not forsake us in our bondage; but He extended mercy to us in the sight of the kings of Persia, to revive us, to repair the house of our God, to rebuild its ruins, and to give us a wall in Judah and Jerusalem.”

If, after all the mercy God has demonstrated—in a miraculous election—we fail to repent, rise and take our rightful place in America’s future…we can be destroyed.  Listen again to Ezra:

Ezra 9:13 “And after all that has come upon us for our evil deeds and for our great guilt, since You our God have punished us less than our iniquities deserve, and have given us such deliverance as this, 14 should we again break Your commandments, and join in marriage with the people committing these abominations? Would You not be angry with us until You had consumed us, so that there would be no remnant or survivor?”

Wrath comes when you do not properly respond to mercy:  2 Chronicles 32: 25 “But Hezekiah did not repay according to the favor shown him, for his heart was lifted up; therefore, wrath was looming over him and over Judah and Jerusalem.”

Look again at Ezra’s words: but He extended mercy to us in the sight of the kings of Persia, to revive us, to repair the house of our God, to rebuild its ruins, and to give us a wall in Judah and Jerusalem.”

Trump is a temporary reprieve.  Now we must do our part.  We must act on the mercy we have been shown.  He extended mercy so that we would do three things: Revive, Repair and Rebuild. 

Revive: God commands us to seek a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit.  We dare not have church without it!  We dare not utter another word in the pulpit that denies it!  The word of the Lord for this hour is: cry out to God with heart of gratitude for a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit.

Here is the key promise if we do: 1 Samuel 10: 6 Then the Spirit of the Lord will come upon you, and you will prophesy with them and be turned into another man. 7 And let it be, when these signs come to you, that you do as the occasion demands; for God is with you.

Repair:  The pulpit and our moral compass is broken.  They must be repaired!  Our wiring, plumbing and foundations are damaged.  Abortion and marriage are issues we lost because our leadership was broken.  We abandoned the Bible and did not arm ourselves or the congregation with convictions.

America need Lions who roar from a righteous heart.  Away with secret sin and lukewarm grace.  Prayer will repair.  The voice that shakes hell and frees men and women from bondage is forged only in fervent prayer.  Satan does not respect your stage presence, education or tactics.  He knows a prayless poser.  He only retreats before men and women who have been to Gethsemane.

Rebuild: We must come home to the Glorious Gospel.  We must dismantle all the silly things we have tried to say to this generation.  Forget about rebranding!  We need to rebuild our sermons from the ground up.  Let them be replete with Bible Verses.  Let them talk of the mighty God.  Fill them with content the Holy Spirit can use on lost souls!  The Good News must once again roll off our tongue in the office, on campus and at the mall.

The consequences of cheapening God’s mercy are too terrible to imagine.  The opportunity this miracle has opened is too wonderful to ignore.  That is the word of the Lord for this hour.

 

 

WE BETTER START TALKING TO EACH OTHER

One of our regular donors wrote: “How could you go to Bethel in Redding?!  I can no longer support you” They withdrew their monthly support to help me win souls.  Now, I will answer their question with a question.

We better start talking to each other

By Mario Murillo

One of our regular donors wrote: “How could you go to Bethel in Redding?!  I can no longer support you” They withdrew  monthly support that helps me win souls.  Now, I will answer their question with a question.

How could I not go?  Bill Johnson is my closest brother.  I grew up with the Johnsons.  Earl Johnson was like my dad.  Earl gave me one of my very first revival meetings in 1970.

How could I not go?  When Mechelle and I were divorced and churches slammed the door in our faces, it was Bill who never wavered and stood with us until, our marriage was miraculously restored 11 years ago.

How could I not go?  I want to save America.  I stand before thousands of young students at the Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry—students on fire and yearning to be used of God—students who are teachable.  We desperately need young soldiers to expand our outreaches, and they need an outlet for their fervor.  I would rather calm them down a little than to try to resurrect some cold, dead cynical student from a stuffy, skeptical, Christian College.

How could I not go?  Bethel is a growing force in the Body of Christ that cannot be dismissed.

Our nation is in the most dangerous condition I have seen in my lifetime.  Satan is raging through our culture with virtually unobstructed access to your children.  The church meanwhile is sidelined for stupid reasons.  The Holy Spirit is grieved that we cannot pool our considerable talents and resources to overwhelm the enemy.  Signs and wonders would flow on a dramatically higher level if national eldership flowed in humble unity.

Face to face meetings automatically dial down divisions—polarity declines wherever communication begins.

I could use debate skills to make a case for glaring doctrinal error in everybody from the Assemblies of God to Calvary Chapel.  If that statement offends you…look out!  The greatest heresy is to believe you have achieved doctrinal purity.

That everyone is off on some point of theology is no excuse for heresy—it is motivation for hope.  To correct error, let’s start with our own.  Jonathan Edwards said,” A true saint is suspicious on nothing more than his own heart.”

Not only that, much of what we hear comes from unreliable sources.   In other instances, words were said or written in a moment of excitement.   Perhaps, with brotherly and sisterly love the people we criticize  would tell us “I never said that,” or, “I am sorry, I’ll take that back. I should have said that better.”

There are many false teachers and false prophets roaming America.  That is a different matter.  They need to be exposed.  Sin needs to be exposed.  However, we will not rightly discern truth from error while we are painting with the broad brush of doctrinal paranoia.  I know you have seen the hilarious websites where “truth warriors” list everyone they think is a heretic.  Almost everyone is on that list and it grows daily.

Another big question is this: are we moved by anger rather than true discernment?  Did that former partner of ours let their feelings about Bethel supersede their love for lost souls?

It’s not just heresy hunters that are a threat.   Every preacher who grows more isolated from other leaders is also a threat.  Instead of talking to each other, preachers continue to throw red meat to their base.  This is why we are getting further away from each other.  The grace camp keeps getting more hyper.  The repentance camp keeps getting more judgmental.   The prosperity camp keeps getting more materialistic.  The seeker camp casts increasing doubt on the Bible to gain acceptance from the mainstream public.

Preaching your pet doctrine to the exclusion of all others helps to kill America.  Ignoring the rest of the Body as you expand your empire is a betrayal of Christ—no matter why you do it.

Bottom line:  If you are not alarmed by destruction of the presidency—If you do not see the iron-curtain of mind control ringing down on our colleges—If you do not see the killing fields of drug gangs expanding in our inner cities—If you are blind to the avalanche of immorality and perversion—If you cannot see that time is running out, or that business as usual means certain death…then, you my friend, are an enemy to revival and America.

We need to pray together.  We need to obey God together.  But first, we better start talking to each other…fast.

 

 

THE BEST THING TO DO NOW

My soul surveyed the nation.  I took in the entire national crisis and prayed “What is the best thing to do now?” 

THE BEST THING TO DO NOW

By Mario Murillo

(Preached at Bethel Church Redding Sunday March 19th 6 PM service.)

I stand before you tonight on the heels of a great dealing of God—perhaps the greatest dealing of God besides my conversion.  God said, “Raise $1 Million—choose 10 cities—invest the money in those cities for a specific outreach and I will start a youth movement.”  The ten cities had to be places that are open wounds.

This mandate led to a personal revelation that I am sharing here for the first time.   My soul surveyed the nation.  I took in the entire national crisis and prayed “What is the best thing to do now?”

There are many candidates for the title of best thing to do.  

Unity is a great choice.  Healing the division in the Body of Christ is a great choice for best thing.  No matter where I go, people have an issue.  The Body is so entrenched in their own camps.

Wouldn’t it be a powerful thing if all of the camps in the Body of Christ would realize that their theology is incomplete and find common ground to pool strength and hit the nation with a tsunami of compassion?

Another great choice is anointed worship music.   Music gets in where sermons cannot.  Music is the only art form that bypasses the brain on its way to the heart.  We saw it with Andrae Crouch, Hosanna integrity, Hillsong, and the Bethel music that has gone global from this very room.

The right choice must be prayer.  How could anyone consider anything to be above the power of prayer and the urgency of prayer?

The fact that none of these is what I feel in my spirit is the best thing to do now.  So if none of these worthy candidates is the best…what is?

To find out we must first ask, “what does now look like?”  Now we have a divided and often lukewarm American church—a church that is long on experience and ignorant of scripture.

Now let’s look outside the church walls:  We have an entire generation raised without church.  Judges 2:10 says, “Judges 2:10 When all that generation had been gathered to their fathers, another generation arose after them who did not know the Lord nor the work which He had done for Israel.”

That—thanks to our universities—is our current problem.  Our classrooms create easily offended, intolerant, fearful students.  They hate free speech if it disagrees with them.  They believe violence should be applied to silence an opposing viewpoint.  Their credo is now: With sticks and stones I’ll break your bones because your words have hurt me.”

They are the generation that can end America.  I call them generation fatal.

Liberalism run amok has unleashed a spirit of violence and lawlessness. I said in a recent blog:  “America is the only nation in history where those who control the money, the airwaves, the press, and the universities, fancy themselves an underground resistance.

We are supposed to believe ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Google, Apple, Microsoft, Hollywood, every Ivy League school, plus the Democratic Party have been driven into underground revolutionary bunkers. We have come to a sad and inexplicable madness where the “Freedom Fighters” are fighting against, well, freedom.  The anti-fascists are the fascists.  In the name of liberation, they are taking dead aim at the Bill of Rights…not just some of it—but all of it.”

This is what now looks like.  Now is pandemic drug addiction.  Now is a crime wave that has reduced inner cities into killing fields.  Now is tyranny in the news media.  Now is duly elected president under siege.  I am not here to burst your blessing bubble but:

-If we refuse to see it because we think it betrays our view of the goodness of God, we can’t obey God for a solution.  We have lost our nation by default.

-If we let a cheapened view of grace weaken our holy resolve and fire.

-If we turn retreat into victory with spiritual self-entitlement…we are not only in sin but we will have to apologize the millions of oppressed Christians around the world.

So what is the best thing we can do now?  It is what I learned one night after having tried everything to reach a riot-torn intellectual bastion called Berkeley.

MARIO MURILLO PREACHING ON THE BERKELEY CAMPUS OCTOBER 4TH 2014

Having tried all of the aforementioned candidates for best thing to do I went on campus late one night.  God was trying to give me the answer but I wouldn’t listen.  I did not know that death awaited me.

It was a dark night on Sproul Plaza.  I approached a flower child, thinking this was easy pickings.  As I witnessed to him a 6 foot 5-inch behemoth grabbed me and proceeded to choke me.  Murder was in his eyes.  It was demonic.  Intellectual debate was useless against this monster.

Instantly I knew where I was wrong and what to do.  It was as I was having the life choked out of me that I discovered the truth that I am going to relate to you.  The power of God—out of mercy—gave me wisdom and boldness.

Somebody else took over my body—words, not of me tumbled from my lips.  I ordered him to take his hands off of me.  I ordered him to back off.  He did.  As he did, he stopped staring at me.  He gazed at something behind me.  It was way taller than him.  He looked startled.  I ran.

As I sprinted home a verse kept roaring in my soul: “not by might nor by power but by My Spirit says the Lord.”  The best thing that could ever happen—the best thing for me to do—was to allow the power of God to collide with the power of Satan in a public place.

Thus began our Saturday Nights of Miracles.  Miracles blasted U.C. Berkeley open.  We even broke through to use the coveted Pauley Ballroom.

Miracles sustained for 10 years and now I must tell you—by the numbers—the best thing to do now:

-The best thing to do now is to break the lie that the miracles that happen in Asia, Africa, and Latin America cannot happen here.  Just as He raises the dead in plain view and multiplies food and water there—it can happen here.  The best thing is to break the glass ceiling we have created for miracles in America.

-Living Proof is the name of our crusades because it will take miracles to the mainstream of American culture.

From every angle our best move now is to be totally grateful for every miracle God has done and be totally starved to see more and greater miracles and to see them where they matter.

Now let me show you from different angles the absolute proof that this is our best move now.

The greatest Christian intellectual who ever lived had just seen—while arguing on Mars Hill in Athens—the futility of debating intellectual culture.  On his trek from there to Corinth a conviction was emblazoned in his soul.  Notice what he said:

1 Corinthians 2: And I, brethren, when I came to you, did not come with excellence of speech or of wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God. 2 For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. 3 I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling. 4 And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, 5 that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.

Miracles put a deep foundation in new converts: What I hope will hit you is this: Our best move now is to but a supernatural foundation in new converts—a foundation that cannot be destroyed by a professor, gang leader or a politician.

Miracles force anti-God government to back off:  Acts 4: 14 “And seeing the man who had been healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it. “

When the greatest mind the church ever produced concluded that nothing was to be compared to the miracles of Jesus when combating a perverse culture, it should settle it for us.

These are the miracles that will ignite unity:  Acts 3:11 Now as the lame man who was healed held on to Peter and John, all the people ran together to them in the porch which is called Solomon’s, greatly amazed.

New songs: Psalm 96: 1 Oh, sing to the Lord a new song! Sing to the Lord, all the earth. 2 Sing to the Lord, bless His name; Proclaim the good news of His salvation from day to day. 3 Declare His glory among the nations, His wonders among all peoples.

Prayer: Now I want you to get ready to pray.  Not just any prayer—but the prayer that Peter prayed that let loose a gusher of signs and wonders:  Acts 4: 29 “Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word, 30 by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus.”31 And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.”

Miracles are best for neutralizing persecution and the overreach of government.  When Peter left the council who ordered the church not to speak he knew what his best move was.  It is also our best move against the political correctness that has morphed into blatant tyranny.

Note that one thing he wanted was a special boldness.  His precise plea reads like this: Give me the special boldness that comes while you do signs and wonders.

This is the best thing we can do now.  It will crush the ramparts of Satanic power that are killing our country.

Finally, do you think I am being idealistic and naïve? Do you not see that the prime directive of Christ for those charged with spreading His Gospel was exactly what I say we need to do?  Jesus said, John 14: 12 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. 13 And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.

Let’s retrace our steps to a childlike hunger and desperation—only this time let it be with an irrefutable passion to let miracles–undeniable confirmed miracles flow in the mainstream of American culture.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ministers who do not love America

 

Ministers who do not love America

By Mario Murillo

Matthew Henry said, “Great pretenders to sanctity are commonly the worst enemies to those who are really sanctified.”

I collided with a false minister.  He attacked me and said, “you have become a politician,” (I could see right through him).  I asked him “what is a politician?”  He set a trap for himself by his own words.

So, then I asked him why he wasn’t speaking out against the destruction of America.  He told me that it would split his church.  I said, “you have just told me that a politician is someone who will say and do anything to stay in power.  I am not the politician you are!” 

Amos 7: 12-15 says, “Then Amaziah sent orders to Amos, “Get out of here, you prophet, you! Flee to the land of Judah and do your prophesying there! 13 Don’t bother us here with your visions, not here in the capital where the king’s chapel is!”  14 But Amos replied, “I am not really one of the prophets. I do not come from a family of prophets. I am just a herdsman and fruit picker. 15 But the Lord took me from caring for the flocks and told me, ‘Go and prophesy to my people Israel.”

Amaziah was a false priest who led Israel to worship Golden Calves.  He should never have interfered with the prophetic message of God.  Amos told him,“Hey, I didn’t ask for this job, God put me in this.”  Then God said this to Amaziah: “Now, therefore, listen to this message to you from the Lord. You say, ‘Don’t prophesy against Israel.’ The Lord’s reply is this: ‘Because of your interference, your wife will become a prostitute in this city, your sons and daughters will be killed, and your land divided up. You yourself will die in a heathen land, and the people of Israel will certainly become slaves in exile, far from their land.’” -Amos 7: 16-17

Like Amos, I had to be dragged into the political fray by the Holy Spirit.  I knew going in that it would touch off a firestorm of criticism.  But I had no choice.

It’s strange how few criticized me when I railed against gang violence, poverty, heroin and crystal meth, and how many attack me for exposing the worst gang and the most addictive narcotic in the ghetto: liberal government.   

The left sells a drug cocktail of atheism, Islam and the destruction of the family.   Not only this, but they viciously attack free speech—only their viewpoint is allowed.

I didn’t leave my calling—I am fulfilling it.  We are more active in inner city soul winning than ever—only now, we are getting to the root of the problem.

First and foremost—we preach Jesus to youth.  We make way for miraculous healings.  But we also train them on what made America great.  We honor the truths that made us blessed and we expose the lies that are destroying our nation.

Saving America should be a passion for all ministers.  Tell me what is wrong with that?  What is wrong with pointing out the fact that our greatness is tied to Christ?  I do not want a theocracy—to have “Christians run the country.”  I do not seek a sanctified sharia.  But who can deny the power, protection and prosperity we enjoyed when the teachings of Jesus were honored in the halls of our government?

Those who are called to preach to America should love the nation more than their financial security and reputation.

Those false ministers—who form covenants with darkness—who are muzzled by politics and can’t condemn abortion, the destruction of marriage, Islam and the anti-God violence and rebellion face special danger.  And I must ask all ministers a question:  DO YOU THINK YOU WILL ESCAPE?

“This was Mordecai’s reply to Esther: “Do you think you will escape there in the palace when all other Jews are killed?  14 If you keep quiet at a time like this, God will deliver the Jews from some other source, but you and your relatives will die; what’s more, who can say but that God has brought you into the palace for just such a time as this?” Esther 4: 13-14

Like Amos said to Amaziah—don’t interfere with God’s message of repentance or the wrath of God will fall on you!  The very disaster you are trying to escape by compromising will overtake you!  But those who faithfully preach the counsel of God will be spared from all destruction and thrive supernaturally.

 

 

PERMISSION TO TREAT THE WITNESS AS HOSTILE

cowboy blog

PERMISSION TO TREAT THE WITNESS AS HOSTILE

By Mario Murillo

I posted the article from TruNews entitled Why the Hillsong ‘Dancing Naked Cowboy’ Story Matters.  Now I want to speak for myself.

 

Permission to treat the witness as hostile

By Mario Murillo

I posted the article from TruNews entitled Why the Hillsong ‘Dancing Naked Cowboy’ Story Matters.  Now I want to speak for myself.

Someone says to a lawyer, “I have evidence that can convict the murderer.”  The attorney arranges it so that this witness can testify in court.  However, something happens when the witness actually takes the stand.  Suddenly they can’t remember, or they contradict earlier testimony.

Now instead of helping the case, they are damaging it.  To combat this damage the attorney can ask the judge for help.  The attorney asks the judge for permission to treat the witness as hostile.  This grants the lawyer power to ask leading questions.

Leading questions either suggest the answer (“You saw my client sign the contract, correct?”) or challenge (impeach) the witness’ testimony. As a rule, leading questions are generally only allowed during cross-examination, but a hostile witness is an exception to this rule.

I am treating the idea of doing a naked cowboy bit as a hostile witness.  I am saying it does more harm than good. How can I justify such a statement?!  It is a very good question.  I am doing it for the very same reason that any attorney would to save his client:

A church is a witness sent by God.  If in the process of calling themselves a church, they begin to damage the cause that they vowed to represent—if in their evolution they begin to be a witness for the other side—then they are indeed a hostile witness.

Rational ministers then have a right to ask leading questions.  Why is a church so long on art and so short on truth? What is the end game of a naked cowboy bit in a women’s conference?  I mean beyond getting attention?  Why are you having to do a press conference every few months to clear the air on some bizarre action by your staff?  So what if you get a big crowd…when do they become disciples and how do these antics turn a wicked culture to God?

To the thousands of pastors slugging it out—who have sacrificed to be a wall of fire against immorality this is a major slap in the face.  That is why I call them a hostile witness.  Furthermore, this emboldens the idea that shock-jock tactics are justified if you want a crowd.

I treat them as a hostile witness because this particular brand of compromise enforces a hideous lie. It is the lie that the Gospel is inherently unacceptable to the culture and therefore must be diluted, rebranded and packaged in a form that the world already likes. This lie has allowed us to win meaningless skirmishes while losing a generation.

And don’t try to tell me about your tolerance.  Just as liberals will drop the race card anytime someone says something valid against them so do these mega pastors drop the legalism card every time a decent question is raised, i.e. “you’re just being religious.”

If this blog only pointed out fault and offered no constructive alternative it would be as bad as the issue it raises.

There is plenty of fault on the other side of the church—the church that is content to spout trite condemnation to a sinning society.  God wants creative juices to flow in the church.  He wants a fresh approach that is compelling and anchored in Bible truth.  So what is the answer?

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In the constant strain to find the right message preachers are mostly divided into two camps.

  1. Those who believe you should tell the people what they want to hear.
  2. Those who believe that you should tell the people what they need to hear.

Those in the “we tell people what they need to hear” often boast, “We are not into entertainment in our church.”   The dictionary defines entertainment as “holding an audience’s attention.”  Some pastors who claim not to “be into entertainment” do not know how right they are.

I believe that both of these positions lack something critical.  In fact, I believe that Jesus practiced something that transcended both of these positions: He told people what they needed to hear and made them want to hear it.

No one embodied this more than Dr. Billy Graham.  His messages were teeming with subjects that society did not want to hear and yet millions hung on his simple words and obeyed his clear appeal.

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Preaching is easy if you do not need to do it right.   Even entertaining preaching is a snap if you are willing to offer up your integrity on the altar of trends.   But the preaching that pierces the lies of your time and makes disciples out of fallen men asks a far greater price than most modern ministers may be willing to pay.

Here are some simple points about reaching the lost in these dark times.

  1. You will never reach a city that you cannot weep over. Tears over the plight of a community are essential to doing a great work in that community. Even if you somehow get a crowd through hard work and technique it will not be a deep or lasting impact without God given compassion.
  2. You can tell the truth without love but you cannot love without telling the truth. The real reason you never get around to calling sin, sin is that you do not love the audience enough. I know men so caught up in church growth that people are nothing but numbers to them.  They would rather hold on to them than help them.  Paul said in Acts 20: 20 “how I kept back nothing that was helpful, but proclaimed it to you, and taught you publicly and from house to house.”   The best preaching in the world has come from hearts that burned with love for their audience.
  3. There are no short cuts to becoming an effective communicator. God requires us to understand the laws of public speaking.

We would not give a second thought to a preacher wanting to know the laws of grammar.  Good grammar makes writing something you can read and retain.  Why wouldn’t we do the same thing for speaking an audience that we care about?

We can learn from Abraham Lincoln, Winston Churchill, and John Kennedy and yes Ronald Reagan. But having learned it we must—like Paul–subdue it to the fire of the Holy Ghost.

I am convinced that our overdependence on music is directly related to the minister’s lack of confidence in their preaching.

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  1. You must have a right relationship with the supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit.

It is not our place to overrule God’s method to verify the Gospel.  He has chosen miracles, signs and wonders to do this.  For us to impede the gifts of the Spirit is to rob God of His chosen confirmation of truth.

Finding out how you will operate in miracle power is not as important as finding out that you must operate in miracle power.  Once you are convicted of its utter necessity, the means for you to express it will inevitably appear.

The supernatural power of God will deliver us from tricks and sad imitations of Broadway. We will never outdo Andrew Lloyd Webber but we can shine on a level the world cannot approach with the presence and glory of Jesus Himself.

The Pulpit commentary—not known for being Pentecostal says this—“And what we need, as the sustaining spirit of all work, is the conviction that Christ has given his Church power to heal and to cure diseases.”

HE IS AT WAR WITH US

 

He is at war with us.

By Mario Murillo

 

The American pastor Saeed Abedini–held hostage by Iran was set to fly to freedom but they had to wait for another plane to arrive from America first.  That plane was most certainly carrying $400 million in cash sent from Obama to Iran.  There is also great reason to believe that money will end up in the hands of those who would destroy Israel and America.

In an interview about his release Saeed Abedini was asked, “Were they effectively waiting for the money to come in before they then let you take off?” He answered, “Yeah. They didn’t talk about money. They just told us about the — they told me about the plane. … So, the reason that they said you’re here in the airport is — was just because we are waiting for another plane.”

The Wall Street Journal says “But U.S. officials also acknowledge that Iranian negotiators on the prisoner exchange said they wanted the cash to show they had gained something tangible.

How can this be happening without criminal charges?  Because the White House has rigged the system. Obama is at war with us.  Hillary will continue his war on us.

However, this article is not about Obama. He is mentioned in it.  He is accused in it—he is the villain of it—but it is not about him.  This article is about you and me.  It is about facing the most horrible fact—we have had to face—since the Civil War.

The man who occupies the White House is at war with us.  He is not at war against ISIS.  He is not at war against black poverty.  He is not at war against unemployment.  He is not at war against anything that threatens you.  He is at war with you.

The man who has the most power over Americans is actively working to destroy Americans.  That is a bitter pill to swallow—but swallow it we must.

But how do I convince you that he is at war against us?  I struggled with this for a long time. Then I found an analogy that explains Obama’s destructive style.  He acts like a man that has murdered his wife and is trying to cover it up.

The husband is always the first suspect—no matter what.  Detectives use a different set of eyes than you and I.  The adoring faithful husband is defended by family, friends and neighbors.  He has the perfect alibi.  He has no history of violence.

However, the police will not rule him out if he begins to act strangely.  Say, he shows little sense of loss.  He talks more about himself than he does his dead wife.  If she is missing, he seems to be going through the motions of trying to find her.

Obama’s reaction to the mass murder in Paris is a perfect example.  It is the same, tired, brain-numbing non response to terror.  He is sorry, but not really.  He keeps up the appearance of a caring husband who—having done away with his wife—feigns sorrow.   He has done this after every terror attack.

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Sherlock Holmes said, “How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?”   When you eliminate the impossible about Obama here is what is left: He is motivated by hate.  He hates America.  He hates Christianity.  He hates Israel.

All of his policies carry this one universal criterion: How much it will damage the people I hate.  Use that formula and all of the lights will suddenly go on.  He blocks energy independence, a secure border, a jobs program or anything else that would better our lives.

His foreign, environmental, economic, immigration, and educational, policies fail by design—not incompetence.  He ruined our healthcare; enflames racial division; foments student unrest, and endangers the lives of police officers by design.

He bullies Israel but gives billions to her mortal enemies.

Here is what is really chilling: Even after it was proven that the killers in Paris were Syrian refugees, he will still force us to take in 100,000 Syrian refugees. Is he actually working toward terrorism here at home?

His zeal to end America Israel and Christianity is so great—I seriously believe he would wreak havoc—declare martial law, stay in office beyond his current term—to finish the job.

If you are a true Christian and you want to stop Obama…then stop doing these things:

1.Stop denying that he is at war against you and your children’s future. Face it! How can you do what Christ wants you to do against this evil if you will not admit the evil?

We cannot stop Obama unless we face the fact that he is at war with us. All God-fearing, freedom-loving people must unify against him.  The unity and resolve required to stop him can come only after we face the ugly truth.

2. Quit saying all we need to do is pray.   No one ever prayed like Jesus.  No one ever understood prayer Like Jesus.  No one valued prayer like Jesus.  And yet, He did not just pray.  He went forth in the power of the Spirit.  He rebuked the king—He turned over the tables of the money changers and He verbally blistered the Pharisees.  He did not just pray—He acted on His prayers.

Well,of course we need to pray. I intercede daily.  But to say that all we should do is pray is a cop out.  If you believe that the sole response to Obama should be prayer then you are doing a disservice—not only to America—but to prayer.   Prayer always ends in acts of obedience.

In Acts 4:29 Peter prayed “Lord look on their threats and grant to your servants that with all boldness we may speak Your Word.”  Try this the next time you pray—Ask for boldness and guidance.  Ask to know your place in stopping the war on Israel, Christianity and everything that made America great.  After you pray…you have to take a stand.

slander3. Stop supporting Christian compromise. Why your pastor refuses to preach against the crimes of Obama is not the question—why you still attend that church is the question.

 (Special note: I do not believe that the Sunday pulpit should be a constant flow of tirades against Obama.  It should be well-placed and relevant to the instruction of the people.  It should be done to inform believers about why we believe what we believe so they can answer the persecution of the culture.   What I am saying is that it is odd if you do not know where your pastor stands on these issues.)

Your time, talent and money should not be going to the compromised church.  Shift your support. Begin to strengthen the arm of those who are risking all to oppose this tyrant.

4. Stop abusing love. It is not hateful to oppose Obama—it is love. To be silent in face of hatred is hatred itself.  When we remain silent we do not practice love; we hate God’s Word; we hate holiness; we hate truth; we hate sacrifice and courage.

Stop worrying about what millennials think.  Stop worrying about our public persona.  When the truth comes out a grateful generation will thank us for intervening against destruction.

5. Quit saying “I am not going to do anything because it won’t make any difference.” Revivals can be traced to a single person. Do not say that great movements cannot begin with small groups in unpromising circumstances.  Indeed, that is exactly how all great movements have been born.

You have come to the kingdom for such a time as this.  You cannot waste one more moment in fear or self-pity.  God can take your simple prayer and willingness and add His amazing power and wisdom to your endeavors.

What if God has been waiting a hundred years for you to come along—discard fear and doubt—take up the sword of the Lord—and plunge it into the heart of darkness?