March 28, 2016

miracles in the mountains - they communicate EVERYWHERE!

Miracles have begun in the Alps.  Very different context than the Middle East where I live, but miracles are a “language of love” that gets EVERYONE’S attention – from Arab muslims to secular Europeans.   I introduced myself as a “healer” to a guy working in a shop and he told me the owner had a bad knee that caused him problems.  I was then introduced to the owner of the shop, a Frenchman, and he explains to me that he had had major surgery on his knee (reconstructive) and that it was in constant pain with limited mobility/flexibility.  That all changed when Jesus got involved!  I had him put his hand on his own knee and after a short prayer all the pain left.  He was shocked.  He testified to his employee that in fact all the pain had left.  Next he asked me if I do something about a back problem he had – again constant pain and limited mobility.  I prayed once having him put his hand on his own back.  Some of the pain left.  I asked if I could put my hand on his back.  He agreed and after a 2nd quick prayer ALL the pain left.  He checked it out thoroughly.  So how do I know he was REALLY touched?  Well, he asked me if I could help his wife who also had a back problem that had been constant for a couple of weeks.  I offered to pray over the phone as he was talking to her and telling her about his knee AND back miracles.  Next thing I know, she is in the shop.  She was Dutch and so I got him involved in praying for her by having him put his hand on her back.  We prayed together and all the pain left after a short prayer.  She was so appreciative and then the “Kingdom Talk” began.  They wanted to know how this was possible.  I explained that like them, I was raised not to believe in the supernatural but that that had all changed in the course of the past 20 years.  I got to share my journey into the miraculous.  It was such a great opportunity and the guys we are here with run a Christian coffee shop right next door and have a relationship with this man and his wife and so the natural follow up is already in place.  

Even as I have been reading the Gospels again during this week it is so obvious how the miraculous healings of Christ grab the attention of even the most skeptical – whether a Middle Eastern muslim or Europeans materialists.  How interesting that Jesus has NEVER changed!

March 23, 2016

healed muslim calls back for friend who needs healing

The first man who was healed the other day, a Jordanian muslim, called me back tonight to tell me he was still healed of the neck problem that the Lord touched a couple of days ago.  He had a Filipino colleague who needed healing and put her on the phone – she has been constantly dizzy for 8 months, she had irritation in her eyes and she felt a heaviness, choking sensation in her neck.  First of all, I was getting a word of knowledge for her eyes and so I felt the Lord wanted me to start with that.  I asked her to put her hands on her eyes, prayed a quick prayer and immediately the sensation I was feeling ended and I told her that her eyes should be fine.  They were irritation-free!  Next I prayed for the dizziness. Almost a year of constantly feeling dizzy.  I went after that and took a spiritual warfare posture just coming against any afflicting spirits.  After prayer, for the first time in 10 months she was not dizzy.  Finally, I prayed for the choking, heaviness in her throat that she told me started at the birth of her son.  I shut any doors and took authority over the condition.  After prayer she felt normal.  I told her that when she went to bed tonight to thank Jesus because it was Him “healing every disease and sickness" (Matt 9:35) that she had!

For follow up, I have asked her to call my wife in 3 or 4 days to testify as to how things are going.  If any of the conditions return, I told her that my wife would be able to help her again and then to instruct her how to keep her freedom from the afflictions going forward.  

I love it when muslims who Jesus has healed, start referring their friends!

March 20, 2016

several muslims healed

Tonight a couple of us had about an hour to “spill” in a Middle Eastern mall.  One of the guys visiting from a neighboring muslim country wanted to get a feel for how we release the Kingdom in this nation.  We walked into a Nike Store and I got a word of knowledge for a shoulder problem.  It was wrong.  But the muslim man I asked said he had a neck problem that had been bothering him constantly for 3 days.  I asked him to put his hand on his neck, prayed the Lord’s Prayer in Arabic and he was healed!  He was also pretty shocked.  But that wasn’t all.  During my prayer for him, I got a right word of knowledge for an ear problem in his left ear.  He let me pray for that and he was healed of that as well.  I gave him my number and told him to call me in a week.  One I get to see how he is, and also to follow up and share with him more about the Kingdom.  He was asking me “how” after both of his healings.  I really felt it was time to move on and will be excited to see where things go when he calls me back.  We went into another shop and I asked about another word of knowledge for a problem in the middle of the back.  Again, I was wrong.  BUT, the muslim woman (a Filipino muslim woman who may have even been a convert to Islam).  She had a hip problem that wasn’t bothering her at the time, but I asked if I could pray anyway.  I asked her to put her hand on the affected area.  I prayed and the Spirit began to touch her hip as she said she could feel something happening.  This went on for a while because ANOTHER muslim, the manager, from the Nike Shop came in because he too needed healing.  He had heard the testimony of his co-worker and came to see what could happen.  I prayed for his hip which bothered him constantly, and was bothering him at the time and the Lord took away all the pain.  I will follow up with all of them.  God is Good and His Kingdom is EVER-expanding!

February 20, 2016

Islamic Violence and the true nature of Islam

As I have been following the news and commentaries about the current attacks by radical muslims, I think what probably concerns me the most is the continual misinformation that a politically-correct media tolerates and even promotes about the true nature of Islam.  People continue to say, “Islam is a religion of peace” when radical Islamists continue to carry out attacks all over the world.  Paris and California are but two that have gotten our attention because they happened in the West, but the attacks in Nigeria, Kenya, Turkey, Lebanon, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Pakistan, Egypt, Libya and many other places don’t get the same media attention.  All being carried out by devout Muslims in the name of their prophet and religion.

Tragically, in the past 25 years a growing number of Christian missionaries have grown far too “sympathetic” in their assessment of the true nature of Islam and what they believe to be its initial inspiration.  Many will go to incredible lengths to defend Islam and the acts of its followers, even when those acts constitute terrorism.  They will whitewash Islamic history and ignore the problematic verses in the Qur’an.  I know that the lack of receptivity amongst Muslims for centuries led many missionaries to begin exploring with so called “new paths”, but the number of Muslims coming to faith around the world today is unprecedented in history and what lies behind such an incredible response is simply not what these “new path” missionaries think.  More on that in a minute.

To get back to the issue of Islam and the misinformation: in short, there really is much confusion and naturally people are deferring to those who they assume know what they're talking about.  What you are about to read is my contribution to the debate.

I have been a serious student of Islam for more than 25 years and have lived in the Middle East for more than two decades.  I know Arabic and can therefore read and understand the Qur’an and the Islamic traditions in their original language.  As a student of Islamic History, I also know the context in which events happened.  I should also say that I too at one time was trying to “paint” Islam in the most positive light I could – focusing on the Qur’anic verses that were peaceful and promoted tolerance.  I had hoped that something like a “Messianic Muslim” movement could be started that would sweep across the Islamic world.  God at work “on the inside” of Islam was what many of us were advocating (and many still are).  Whereas I can say with the utmost confidence that God is at work deep inside the world of Islam, it is to lead them OUT and to expose the deception that they have been living in.

And before I respond to the issue of the true nature of Islam and the source of its violence, I have a deep love for Muslims.  I have devoted my life to reaching them with the Gospel.  And unlike many who making the claim about all the muslim friends they have, I actually have and have had hundreds of Muslims friends as I live in a muslim neighborhood and work alongside them every day.

I will now speak clearly – the religion of Islam at its source was NOT peaceful and Muhammad was NOT a man of peace but of excessive violence.  Whatever one wants to say about the beginning of his life and mission (I.e. In Mecca), the way he lived up until the end of his life was full of terror and violence.  Notice I did NOT say that most Muslims are violent.  The vast majority of Muslims that I have known are peace loving and have been incredible friends.  I am grateful that they are not following the example of their prophet and the admonish to violence in their scriptures.

I can cite dozens of Qur’anic verses (I’ve supplied a link below) and far more passages from authoritative Islamic traditions (Hadith) in support of what groups like ISIS, Al Qaida and other terrorist Islamic groups are doing.  The command to kill, to behead and even to crucify are all Qur’anic injunctions that are part of the latest (most recent) revealed passages in the Qur’an.  What does this mean?  It means that the peaceful verses, the verses that you will often here moderate Muslims and the media citing have been cancelled out (abrogated) by the later, and thus binding/authoritative ones.  

Here is one example of a verse that abrogates all of the previous peaceful and tolerant verses that call for peaceful co-existence with non-Muslims and even affirm other faiths.

Surat Al Tawba (9:5) (Chapter of Repentance) - “…slay the pagans (mushrikeen) wherever you find them” (note: mushrikeen – often translated as “pagans” or “idolaters” literally means “those who have associated something/someone with God”.  This includes Christians because we believe in the Trinity and have therefore committed the sin of shirk (association) by our belief in Christ’s Deity).  I have had dozens and dozens of Muslims confirm to me that because I believe that Jesus is God and that He is the Second Person in the Holy Trinity that I am a mushrik (an associator).  Every single one of those Coptic Orthodox young men that were beheaded on the beach in Libya earlier this year were beheaded because they believed in the Trinity and were therefore mushrikeen (associators).  This very verse was being obeyed when they martyred those men.  Horrific.  This is not an isolated or a cherry-picked verse but representative of dozens and dozens of similar violent ones.

This verse of terror comes from the final chapter revealed in the Qur’an.  This is like their “Great Commission” chapter.  We have Matthew 28 – they have this chapter.  Their final word, their final marching orders.  This presents a huge problem for modern Muslims because as I said before, most are not violent, and despise violence.  Let me reaffirm once again what I said before: the vast majority of my muslim friends have been some of the kindest, most charitable people I have ever known.  

After literally centuries of almost no response to the Gospel from the Muslim World, I believe that we are living in a new season where God began to expose the true nature of Islam for all to see so that many of its captives will be set free.  It was Jesus who said that those things that are hidden will one day be exposed.  In Matthew 10:26, Jesus said, "Therefore do not fear them, for there is nothing concealed that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known.  So we must not fear them.  Fear is never a legitimate Christian response.  We fear God alone.  And we welcome hidden things (I.e. the true nature of Islam) being exposed for all to see.

I am convinced that we are living in days when the true nature of Islam is being shown and will continue to be shown over and over again.  That could never have happened before the age of mass communications and a worldwide media.  The acts of ISIS and other such groups are almost instantaneously being uploaded and broadcast to the world.  News of these atrocities travels almost as fast as they happen.

In spite of the constant attempts by the moderate Muslims and ironically the Western media to declare it to be a religion of peace, Islamic violence is actually increasing all over the world.  The Middle East I live in today, is far more dangerous than the one I arrived in back in 1992.  There a many places where I could travel freely before with no problems whatsoever.  Today that would be unthinkable.  

I know that what I have just written would have me labeled an “Islamophobe” and would be called “hate speech” by many, including many Christians today.  But we cannot stand by when lies are being uttered, and Islam is being portrayed as something its own scriptures and tradition completely undermine.  Especially when the exposure of the violent nature of Islam is now one of the leading factors that is leading Muslims OUT OF Islam.  While it is true that many are turning to atheism in the abandonment of Islam (sadly because they assume that Christianity must be no different), I can attest to this being a major factor in the lives of the Muslims I have been discipling recently.  Violence in Islam helped lead them to Christ.

If these verses are so prevalent, and these chapters in early Islamic history so clearly full of violence, why doesn’t every Muslim see these things or know about them?  How do they reconcile these things with their own practice of their faith?  Essentially, I believe it boils down to deception.  Many simply don’t see it, even when you show it to them.  

For example, a couple of us were meeting with a devout Shi’ite muslim who I had prayed for to be healed.  During the course of an interesting conversation, I told him that I was grateful that he didn’t obey the Qur’an.  He was confused.  So I showed him the verse - “Do not take for yourselves friends from amongst the Christians and Jews”.  He refused to believe that it was talking about friendship although I was showing him the verse in Arabic.  It simply didn’t “fit” with his interpretation of what Islam is supposed to be.  Another example in that same conversation was when I challenged the Islamic belief that Muhammad was without sin (a universally held belief by all branches and sects of Islam).  However in 4 different places in the Qur’an God is commanding Muhammad to “seek forgiveness for HIS OWN sin”.  I showed this Shi’ite young man the verse in Arabic – I broke down the grammar and the vocabulary of this incredibly clear verse.  It didn’t matter what the Qur’an said – he was convinced of something else and so it didn’t matter what the clear Arabic said.  Deception.  

It is exactly the same with the dozens and dozens of horrifically violent verses in the Qur’an.  Because most of the world’s muslims are in practice peaceful people, and and as I said this is our experience living amongst muslims for nearly 25 years, they simply refuse to see and admit that these verses are there.  Or they try to explain them away as metaphorical, or not applicable today. They just continue to repeat the oft-cited mantra, “Islam is a religion of peace”.  As if saying that somehow makes it true.

Again, here’s the problem.  One of the main factors that is helping muslims to leave Islam today and come to Christ is the realization that they have been deceived.  That Islam is NOT the peaceful religion they had always been told.  They are going back into the Qur’an and into their authoritative traditions and discovering that their prophet was not a man of peace, that he was anything but tolerant.  This is a major crisis that is currently going on in Islam.  One of the common trends has been for modern muslims to completely reject the Hadith (Islamic traditions) and to be essentially “Quran-only” muslims as the traditions are so violent and so indefensible in a modern rationalistic world that they’ve abandoned them.  They are still left with all the violence in the Qur’an.  

What is so tragic is that many Christians, and sadly many Christian missionaries, perpetuate the lie that Islam at it’s source is a peaceful religion.  Are their peaceful teachings in the Qur’an?  Yes, but as I said (and this is according to Islamic Qur’an interpretation) they were abrogated (cancelled out, deemed non-applicable) by the more later “revelations”.  So it is exactly opposite of what we have in the Bible.  Jesus’ teaching supersedes anything in the Old Testament and we are bound by His commands.  Thankfully, Christ left us “a new and living way”.  In Islam it is just the opposite.  The earliest verses in the Qur’an, which is where you find the peaceful and tolerant ones, have been replaced by the later commands to attack, to kill, to subdue, to behead, and to even to crucify non-muslims.  If anyone is interested, here is a link that highlights many of those violence verses in both the Qur’an and the Islamic traditions - http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/quran/023-violence.htm

So we love muslims, we befriend them and we share with them the love of Christ and His Gospel.  What we don’t do is to acquiesce to the “spirit of the age” (the political correctness) and agree with ridiculous statements about Islam that are historically untrue and in contradiction to the clear teachings of the Qur’an


It is like God is wielding a two-edged sword – doing miraculous things in the lives of muslims AND exposing the falseness of their religion and the lies they have believed.  It is these two factors that are behind the greatest number of muslims coming to Christ in all of history.  It is happening all over the Muslim world and in the lives of Muslims who have emigrated elsewhere.  And as countless Christians have suffered martyrdom at the hands of Islamic extremists, the world is watching.  The world is also seeing the true nature of Christianity as many of these martyrs have willingly given their lives instead of denying Christ.  They have been seen praying for their very executioners at the time they were being slain.  Powerful and so much like Christ Himself who uttered the words, “Father, Forgive them, for they know not what they do” even as an act of terrorism was being committed against Him.

October 03, 2015

3 muslims healed

We had the opportunity to pray for a number of different people today and God healed 3 muslims.  A muslim man from India who had a toe injury that had bothered him for a couple of years.  It was hurting when I asked him if I could pray and he was healed.  He checked it out thoroughly afterwards and was quite shocked by what God had done – He asked, “How?”  We got to tell him that Jesus loved him and loves to heal people.  

Next it was a Lebanese muslim woman who the Lord began to give us words of knowledge for as we walked into the store she worked in.  Two of the words of knowledge were for her personally.  At first she wouldn’t let me pray – for a painful tooth problem that the Lord revealed to us.  I gave her a copy of the Lord’s prayer in Arabic thinking she wasn’t going to let me pray.  But then when she said that another word of knowledge, for a painful ear problem, she reluctantly let me pray.  All the pain left.  It was good that we were persistent.  I had asked her when she said she prayed for her own healing, “Why would God reveal your problems to us if He didn’t want to heal you through our prayer?”  I guess that question eventually opened her up to prayer.

Finally we walked into a shop and walked up to group of women employees.  I got a word of knowledge for a back problem in the middle of someone’s back.  A few minutes later after looking for something in the shop, I came back and gathered all 5 of the women together, 3 of them were muslims, and asked who had the problem.  One of the muslim women said it was her and so I had one of the women who was a Christian lay hands on her and prayed.  The muslim woman was healed and testified that all the pain left.

I will be able to follow up with these people and trust that they will have further questions about the Jesus who healed them and surprised them all!

September 12, 2015

Testimony 9-11-15

Muslim man who was prayed for last year contacted one of us and wants to meet for more healing prayer.  May he discover through a Christian that Jesus is the Living Lord and heals the sick today!

July 17, 2015

Iranian Muslim man surprised by revelation

Today while having coffee with a friend, an Iranian man pulls up and parks (illegally) right next to our table.  I knew it was a Middle Easterner, but when I addressed him in Arabic he said he spoke Farsi.  I chatted with him a minute hoping that God would give me some type of word for him.  No clear word of knowledge came.  As he was about to drive away, the word of knowledge finally came for a back problem.  I signaled for him to wait as he was about to take off and he rolled his window down.  Sure enough he had a chronic back problem that had bothered him for years.  I asked if I could “read” over him and that God would heal his back.  He was open to that but unquestionably more taken back that I “knew” his problem when he hadn’t told me.  He let me pray and I gave him my contact info so he could tell me how it was in a week.  He was definitely surprised by God’s goodness towards him and that He demonstrated His love to him.


July 14, 2015

obedience is freedom

We live at a time where in the name of “Grace” obedience to Christ and His commandments have been relegated to the categories of “unimportant” and “secondary”.  This of course is a betrayal of the Apostolic faith and false teaching is spreading like wildfire throughout the Body of Christ.  So called “Grace” teachers are in fact perverting the doctrine of grace and selling it cheaply.  Grace cost God EVERYTHING and in response to God’s grace He requires us to die to ourselves and live lives of wholehearted obedience.  Every Christian will utter the words, “I love God” but in reality many would be hard-pressed to answer the question, “How do you love God?”

1 John 5:3 – In fact, THIS is love for God, to OBEY His commandments

Jesus said, “If you love me, you WILL OBEY my commandments – John 14:15

The convicting reality is that if we are not obeying Christ and His commandments, we are simply NOT loving God.

The craziest of all lies being propagated in the name of truth however is that “obedience to commandments is legalism”.  Christian teachers who have no idea whatsoever what Paul meant when he was speaking about “the law” somehow think that obeying God’s commandments is the same as Paul’s condemnation of Second Temple Judaism’s (1st century Judaism) notions of attaining righteousness through keeping the law.  The two concepts (obeying Jesus & Jews meriting righteousness through keeping the Mosaic Law) are completely different.  

Obedience has NOTHING to do with legalism and the very concepts that Paul and the Apostles were condemning.  Obedience to Christ is actually freedom!  Freedom from ourselves, freedom from bondage, freedom from sin and death.  How ironic that in the name of being “progressive” and being “free”, Christians today are finding themselves in greater deception, and real bondage to sin and addictions than possibly at any other time in the history of the Church.

Grace frees us to obey.  Obedience is the way we remain free.  For CHRIST’S SAKE, don’t let anyone deceive you into thinking that God’s Word is saying anything less.



July 13, 2015

healings in a mall

had a great outreach yesterday in a mall.  after a morning training session, a group of us headed to the mall.  Saw at least 4 people healed, 3 of them after words of knowledge.  Got to pray for others as well and would have to hear back to know if they were healed.  The physical healings led to some inner healing as well and opportunities to prophesy and invite people to church.  It was exciting and all about Jesus!  All of us were encouraged and didn't have a single negative experience and/or anyone who wasn't open to ministry.  Church members are excited to go back and follow up with the people we ministered to - most of who worked in the mall.  The healings included head pain, a neck, a leg and a throat problem.  

March 16, 2015

Gulf Arab muslim girl asks, "What is it, Magic"?


She had been in a car accident and limped into the room.  I asked her to put her hand on her knee.  I prayed in Arabic the Lord’s Prayer closing it in the Name of Jesus and then asked her to stand up and check it out.  There was no more pain.  She then asks, “What is it, Magic”?  I told her NO it was God’s power.  She was pain free but there was still clicking.  I told her we would get the clicking to go too.  I prayed again.  This time breaking off any and all effects of the car accident – any fear or terror.  I commanded the clicking to stop in Jesus’ Name.  She stood up and was not only pain free, but no more clicking in her knee either!  She walked out of the room normally – no limping, no pain and no clicking.

The next day I saw her again and she was totally healed.  God is doing amazing things in the muslim world today – demonstrating His authority and establishing Christ’s Kingdom.

March 02, 2015

Iraqi muslim's knee healed

I had heard about an accident occurring the day before and my Iraqi friend had been hit by a car injuring his knees.  I had an opportunity to pray for him, breaking off the shock and trauma of the injury.  I released God’s Kingdom in the Name of Jesus.  As I closed the prayer, he said he was feeling something and as I walked away he was expressing greater and greater surprise saying, “something is happening, something is happening”.  

I saw him a couple of hours later and one of his knees was completely healed and I will pray for his other one tomorrow.  He had been telling everyone what had happened when his Christian friend prayed for him.

February 23, 2015

MORE miracles amongst muslim Syrian Refugees

Since my last trip to visit Syrian refugees, I had yet another opportunity to visit their camps in Lebanon.  

I went with a group of Lebanese Christians who are helping to meet BOTH their physical and spiritual needs.  As the group I was with began distributing a new load of mattresses, I wandered over and began to pray for any of the Muslim refugees that needed physical healing.  At first I offered to pray for one woman, and the next thing I know I am surrounded by a group who are all hungry for prayer.  Ive attached some of the photos that unknown to me at the time one of the missionaries took.  I think they illustrate how open these Muslims were to receiving prayer in Jesus’ Name from a Christian.  I prayed solidly for a couple of hours and we saw the Lord touch many lives.  I saw numerous physical healings – knees, backs, shoulders, pain in the head.  I don’t even remember all the different conditions I got to pray for.  The reason I know that genuine healings were taking place is because they kept bringing more and more for prayer.

A remarkable one was that one young girl who was blind in one eye had her vision restored.  There was another young woman whose blindness was not healed but I am hoping that one of the women on our team will be able to find her and pray for her again as she is visiting the camp this week.

 We were able to freely hand out many Arabic Gospels and some other literature.  Some of the Muslim youth would come and ask us to give them literature and they would go throughout the camp giving it to everyone!  

God is truly moving amongst the Syrian refugees and there is a huge need for Arabic speakers to regularly visit these camps and teach them God’s Word.  May more Lebanese Christians answer this call for such a time as this!

muslim man's torn hamstring healed

My wife told me to have my eye out for one of the Arab muslim men that I have played soccer with as she saw him limping with a cane.  I told her I would look out for him and sure enough I found him a day or two later walking by my car and I stopped him and asked what had happened.  He explained that he had torn his hamstring in a soccer match and I offered to pray for him that God would heal him.  He agree and I prayed the Lord’s Prayer over him in Arabic and personalized it a bit for his particular injury. I prayed clearly in the Name of Jesus.  I told him to tell me after the weekend how it was.  

On the first day of the work week, I saw him walking out of a building with NO CANE and not limping.  From a distance, I called out to him and asked him how it was, pointing to his leg.  When he saw me, he stopped and turned in my direction shaking his hand and his head as in disbelief.  As I approached him, he asks immediately, “What did you do to me”?  He wanted to know what I prayed and where I had gotten the prayer.  He told me that his entire family wanted to know how the healing happened and what exactly I had prayed!!

Muslims are accustomed to memorizing prayers for every conceivable situation.  He wanted to know if I could send him the prayer.  I told him that I would be happy to and he gave me his phone number.  I not only sent him the Lord’s Prayer in Arabic out of Matthew, but quite a bit more of the passage as it relates to prayer in general.  I know he has received it and most certainly has shared it with his family.

This will be a huge door of opportunity as I follow up with this man.  God is so good and His Kingdom is coming each and every time we pray!

October 13, 2014

miracles amongst muslim Syrian Refugees

Four of us took a 5 day trip to Jordan this past week with the intention of spending time with and ministering to Syrian refugees. As they have fled their war-torn nation, many of them have ended up in refugee camps in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. We had the privilege of connecting with a number of Syrian families in northern Jordan while we were there. We also got to minister to other Jordanian, Palestinian and Egyptian muslims during this trip.

This trip had a major impact on me personally largely due to the time we spent with refugees, hearing their painful stories; ones of loss, shattered dreams, destroyed families and other violent traumas. To see the way the Church has arisen in Jordan to provide for the basic needs of thousands of refugees, was amazing and humbling. To see the way radical Islamic clerics from the Arabian Peninsula are also there to peddle their radical ideas (ironically, the very ideas that have fueled the war they have fled from) and to literally attempt to “buy off” these vulnerable Syrian muslims, made me incredibly angry. The radical “Wahabi” Islam that the Saudis have exported all over the world, and which fuels global Jihad, is pumped into any place and every place that the petrodollars can access. Today one of their targets is wherever there are Syrian refugees. One Syrian after declaring in front of us and his entire family that “all the Saudi Religious Sheikhs are liars”, pulled me aside and pleaded with me for help as he explained that they were ‘confusing’ their women with their poisonous ideas, and ‘buying’ their loyalty (paying them to attend their lectures) which he said was destroying the relationships between husbands and wives. Diabolical. A revelation of the true face and nature of religion of Islam.

All this to say, that this is truly a kairos moment for Syrian muslim refugees and we must pray that the Gospel reaches them at a time when many of them want little to do with the Islam that has destroyed their lives. We saw absolutely no opposition to our message and ministry while we were with them. Not a single objection from one Syrian we spent time with! Unprecedented. Remarkable.

I will try to describe some of the encounters we had and how the Lord led us to minister to them. We had been invited by a friend to visit a number of the Syrian families she knew. We had the honor of sitting with them, and praying for them. God gave us many prophetic pictures and words for them and their futures. Many of them were healed physically often after the Lord would reveal the sickness or injury supernaturally through words of knowledge. One miracle really stuck in my mind. As we were sitting with one family, I got a word of knowledge and asked who in the family had a left shoulder problem. The husband said that it was for his brother who was living outside of the city in the largest refugee camp. I asked if he could get his brother on the phone as I wanted to pray for him. He did and I found out that the shoulder was injured while he was being tortured when the brother was in captivity in Syria. Two years of chronic pain. I prayed for him in Arabic over the phone. I broke off the trauma of the experience. I asked for God’s Kingdom to come and this man was completely healed! I handed the phone to the husband so that his brother could tell him what happened. After hearing his brother testify, he shared with the whole room what the Lord had done. The great end to this story is that one of the Jordanian Christians, who was formerly a muslim, will be able to follow up with him inside the camp.

Perhaps more impactful than the physical healings were the emotions and trauma that God healed, or at least began to heal. We would lay hands on these men and women and ask the Holy Spirit to come and to ask for the Peace of Christ to rest on them. The things that happened were stunning. Those who haven’t laughed or even smiled in as long as they could remember, had joy return. Those who were tortured with flashbacks and night terrors would try to describe what they were experiencing during and after prayer and would say, “I can’t describe what is happening”. Talk about “the peace that TRANSCENDS ALL UNDERSTANDING” (Phil 4:7). We saw that happen to every person we prayed for. A couple of people we prayed for really stood out as they had been fighters in the war. They were bearded radicals (as are most of the opposition regardless of what the liberal media wants us to believe), and I wasn’t sure how open they would be to having Westerners pray for them. The Western-led air strikes are hurting their cause, even if they aren’t/weren’t connected with ISIS (which we don’t actually know) because it strengthens the Syrian Regime that they were fighting against.

The great thing is that LOVE NEVER FAILS (1 Cor 13:8) and we weren't there to talk politics or take sides; we were there to love these men and women in the power of the Holy Spirit in the Name of Jesus. We had the unthinkable opportunity to pray for two different fighters who had life changing encounters with the love of God. Their countenances changed. We saw the anger and desire for vengeance begin to dissipate. I was able to share why Jesus taught us to love our enemies which is a totally foreign concept in Islam.

Beyond these encounters, there was such a hunger for them to hear through prophetic words what the Lord was showing us about their lives. He revealed so many things, some in great detail, which got their attention. Islam teaches that God no longer speaks today. These Syrian muslims heard God speak to them – to call out their destinies, to show them that their futures were full of hope, and to reveal to them the beauty of Christ and His work to make a way for them into His Kingdom. In one house, the muslim women were so impacted that they called their neighbors on the phone and another group of women arrived hungry to hear what God would show us about their lives and solutions to their problems.

Please pray for the Syrian people. More of them are hearing the Gospel today than arguably at any point in the past 1000 years. They are also “seeing” the Gospel as so often it is Christians who are meeting the needs especially in Jordan and Lebanon. One testimony we heard from Lebanon was stunning – a husband who was fighting in Syria heard about people who were helping his family and protecting the honor of his wife and daughters. He came off the battlefield to meet these Christians and to thank them for doing for them what he was supposed to do. The entire family came to Christ. More Lord.

September 26, 2014

a convicting two-part question

In many of the sermons I have preached in the past year, I’ve asked a two-part question.

“How long could you have followed Jesus around (in His earthly ministry) until you saw a miracle”?

Apart from times when He retreated into the wilderness to pray and commune with His Father, most Christians agree it wouldn’t be very long.  A few hours?  A day or two?

THEN I ask the second part of the question:

“How long could someone follow YOU around until they saw one”?

This is a legitimate question for any believer who believes that God hasn’t changed and is working through His children and His Church today in the same way that He did in the beginning.

Something to think about today.  Tomorrow….(and for the rest of our lives!)



How do we know when someone has 'really' been healed?

Even since we began to see people healed regularly, this question comes up regularly - "How do you know when some has really been healed?"

It's a great question when it isn't coming from an "unbelieving believer".  I will say this - to all followers of Jesus, when another Christ follower is testifying to someone being healed in the Name of Jesus (especially when it is the testimony of a non-Christian!), then I think our initial response should be to 'believe the best'.  Re-read the Gospels.  Jesus healed the sick out of His incredible love and compassion.  He's never changed (His Word declares this to be true!).

When this question is coming from a genuine skeptical unbeliever, I basically encourage anybody who we've prayed for who has seen pain leave or some other type of healing, to wait one week and see how it is.  I am willing to concede that if someone's problem has disappeared and is still gone a week later (and doesn't return!) that we can assume that they've been healed.

I also encourage anyone and everyone who can get medical verification (an x-ray, a blood test, an MRI, etc.) to see what has literally changed to do so.  I LOVE IT when some type of test is available that can medically verify that a problem is gone because God has healed someone.

We've seen literally hundreds and hundreds of people, many of those from non-Christian religions, healed and still testifying to those healings.  The referrals continue (referring us to their friends and relatives who are in need of healing) as they continue to testify to them that they were healed when we (or someone in our community) prayed for them.




Healing #2 after NOT responding to a Word of Knowledge

Also while calling out Words of Knowledge in that university lecture this happened…(in the words of the student)

"I actually did experience healing on Friday.  I saw a few of my classmates receive it too but I am still trying to process what I encountered that day.  As stated before, when it comes to healing people on the spot, like what we saw on Friday, I am honestly a bit skeptical.  I cannot grasp it and I have a hard time believing it sometimes.  Throughout DJ’s message, this was in the back of my mind.  I believed but not fully…until the end of class.  He was wrapping up and wanted pray again before some of us, me being one of them, needed to leave to get to our next class.  He said he was feeling that someone had an injured wrist, specifically the left wrist.  That got my attention a little bit because I have had issues with my wrist for about ten years or so now.  BUT it was not my left wrist so I thought to myself, nope not me...wrong wrist!  Before I could even finish that sarcastic thought in my head, DJ says, “Actually it’s the right wrist, whose right wrist is bothering them?”  This, needless to say, grabbed my attention.  I got really hot all of the sudden (which is difficult to do in that freezing room) and I felt as though my heart was going to pop out of my chest.  Why?  Well, like I said before, I have experienced pain in my right wrist for a number of years.  The pain comes and goes.  If I re-aggravate it somehow through exercise or playing drums too much, it bothers me.  The pain is on and off but it can last for weeks if not months at a time.  What made it even more crazy is that particular morning, I could not do the exercises my trainer wanted me to do because my wrist was really bothering me.  I came to class and my wrist was hurting.  I chickened out when DJ “called me out” asking whose wrist was bothering them but even then God healed me.  I am not even kidding, as I was walking to my next class after DJ spoke, my wrist had no pain.  It gave me no pain the rest of that day, the next day and even on Sunday after playing the drums in 3 church services.  Nothing, no pain…no popping, nothing.  I cannot explain it.  All I know is that God worked through DJ that day to speak to me…."


Healing #1 after NOT responding to a Word of Knowledge

I was calling out some Words of Knowledge in a university lecture and there was a baseball player who said that I had called out "left knee." He knew it was him but didn't say anything. Then when he was walking out of class he realized all the pain was gone and it hasn't returned!  He has subsequently testified.

divine appointment in Montana

While in a town at the base of the mountains, I was with one of my favorite “Kingdom partners” and his wife and he got a word of knowledge for our server asking him if he had ever broken his back. Prayed for him and the young man wrote back that since the prayer his back had been pain free! He goes on to write, 

"what you didn't know however though is that when you came in me and my girlfriend had just broken up (We're still figuring out if that was the right decision). The reason for us breaking up was majorly religious differences. Although I do believe in God I do not have a strong relationship with Him; she does. Loving Jesus is one of her main priorities in life. It's not that I don't want to its just not something I was raised with I know virtually nothing about how to love Him or what it even means. Her ending words of the relationship were "I just wish you loved Jesus". Then you come in and I felt as though it was a sign. (this is a really long email i'm sorry i have a lot on my mind). Anyway I'm lost.

AND THEN HE ADDS

"I want to grow my relationship with Him but that’s all I know. I haven't exactly lived my life as He would like I know that but i think i'm willing to change…"

The follow up has continued now for several months and this young man is now attending a Church in Billings, Montana.

It’s amazing what one supernatural word of knowledge and a subsequent healing of a back can do to extend the Kingdom!

July 03, 2014

Tunisian muslim soccer player healed

Today while I was watching my son play in a match, I noticed one of the players limped off the field.  I heard him speak some Arabic so I went up and introduced myself.  I asked him what happened and he had injured his ankle.  I switched into Arabic and asked if I could “read over him” for healing (using an Islamic way of asking).  He was absolutely open and allowed me to pray.  I prayed the Lord’s prayer over his ankle and closed my prayer in Jesus’ Name.  I then asked him how it was feeling.  In total shock, he began expressing, “Praise be to God” in Arabic over and over and called one of his friends (another Arab muslim) who was in the match to testify about what God had just done.  I gave him my name/number and proceeded to go up into the stands to watch the rest of the match.

After the game, I came down again and he then asked me in Arabic, “Are you fasting Ramadan”?  I guess he wasn’t clear earlier as I explained, “I’m a Christian”.  He must have thought I was some kind of a muslim healer (even though I had prayed the Lord’s Prayer and closed in Jesus’ Name).  I’m glad it was crystal clear in the end that is was Jesus who had healed him in response to a Christian’s prayer – all during the beginning of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.  He has a lot to think about.  Can’t wait to hear back from him.


May 28, 2014

after God gives word of knowledge, Gulf Arab woman asks "How does she know?" AGAIN

We have said this many times, but often muslims are more shocked when God reveals a problem that they have through a word of knowledge than when they actually get healed.  In this case, my friend has asked more than once how I “knew” something.  It is again an opportunity to explain how God speaks and reveals, something Islam rejects for today.

First of all I was able to pray for my Gulf Arab muslim friend’s wrist who had told me all about a visit to the doctor for a very painful wrist; she couldn’t lift anything.  After prayer in Jesus’ Name, she felt something (her description) “swirling all around my arm and wrist”.  I told her that was God showing her that He was healing her arm.  She told me the pain left and it was good.  I will be following up in a couple of days to see how it is now some days later.

A while later as we were talking I got a strong word of knowledge for a problem on the right side of the jaw and asked my friend if she had a particular problem in that specific area and she replies in a shocked manner, “Yes” and then turns to her daughter and asks, “How does she know?”.  Shocked more about the revelation than anything else.  This is not the first time I’ve gotten words of knowledge for her and other female members of their family.  It is just so “outside the box” that God would speak today to someone that she acted as if it was the very first time I had done it.  Of course I then prayed for her jaw.  She told me it was also good after prayer but was still so stunned by the revelation that she didn’t seem too focused on the result.  I will be following up with her about the jaw as well.

All of this enables me to speak many things about the Kingdom with this muslim family.  They are experiencing God’s power in Jesus’ Name.  May they receive special revelation (dreams and visions) to confirm the word that they are both hearing verbally from me and experiencing (through words of knowledge, healings) as the Kingdom comes!

May 16, 2014

"The Look" - Bangladeshi muslim man's hand healed and asks for another healing and gets it!

While I was walking out of the hospital, I noticed that one of the security guards had his hand bandaged.  I went up and asked him what had happened and he explained he had fallen and most likely sprained it.  He was in pain and couldn't move it without discomfort.  I took his hand and prayed in Jesus' Name and what followed was "The Look"- that look of complete shock which asks, "What did you just do to me?".  He was so happy as he was moving it around with no more pain.  He looks to his colleague to confirm that in fact something has truly happened.  I told him it was Jesus who touched him.

I wasn't going to be able to leave because he next shows me his other hand where he obviously had some type of old injury - he'd broken one of his fingers.  He wanted prayer for that as well.  I prayed again and I don't know exactly what happened (or what the nature of the problem had been at that point) but he again looks to his colleague with "The Look" and I knew that the Lord had done something that was supernatural.

I was limited in my ability to communicate, but it was clear to him that I was a Christian and that it Jesus who had healed him.  Two muslims had A LOT to talk about as I walked away.

Some who are skeptical want to know, "How do you know if they are REALLY healed?"  I don't always have an answer to that question but when a muslim gives me "The Look" and his whole demeanor changes and he thanks me profusely, I think that there's a pretty good chance that God has intervened.  They have absolutely no expectation that they will be healed and add to that that I am a follower of a faith they consider false and you cannot conclude that there is any false hope.  I didn't even tell this guy what I was going to do - I just carefully took his hand and began to pray.

May 06, 2014

Gulf Arab muslim's broken toes healed - declares, "I am shocked!"

Last week I saw a college student limping by with his foot wrapped.  I asked him what happened and he told me it was a soccer injury.  I told him that if he had time to come by my office and I told him where it was.  Sure enough, he shows up at my office and had no idea why I had asked him to come by.  I asked him to take a seat and I told him that I was going to “read over” him (an Arabic language expression he would understand for prayer) and that God would heal him.  I had him put his own hand on his toes which I could see were badly bruised and swollen, undoubtedly broken.  He let me pray and thanked me as he got up to leave.  I told him to be sure to come back and let me know how it was – preferably in a week or so.

So today (about a week later) he shows up in my office.  He comes in and I recognize him and ask how his toes are doing.  He asks, “What did you do to me?”  He had been playing soccer again with no pain and said twice, “I am shocked”.  I shared a little bit with him about our mandate to heal the sick as Christians and gave him my number saying that if he or anyone he knows needs a miracle to not hesitate to call me.  He knows where my office is, he has my number and Jesus has radically healed his foot.  I know I’ll be hearing from him soon.

May 04, 2014

Gulf Arab muslim has his ankle over 90% healed and is close to the Kingdom after visitations (yes, visitation-s plural!)

Last night I met again with a man who has expressed a growing interest in following Jesus especially after two visions this week.

He has been studying the Bible and as we encouraged him to really "consider the cost" of following the Lord Jesus.  I hadn't heard from him in a while and had been texting him sporadically to see where he was at and if he was ready to meet.  I had heard nothing.

We had had an focused time of prayer for him two night before that God would really move on him to take more initiative.  Then he responded to one of my texts and wanted to meet.

I knew he was injured as he had mentioned it in a message - he had sprained his ankle badly playing soccer.  He had been on crutches and when I saw him his ankle was wrapped and he was limping with a cane.  Before we talk about anything, I told him that I wanted to pray for his ankle.  I laid my hand on it and prayed.  Immediately something happened and he got up to check it out - he was somewhat shocked.  He told me it was much better.  We prayed two more times and it continued to improve.  At the end I asked him how it was - 75% better.  He said, "No, it's better than that - like 95% better!"  I'll accept that willingly.

He had also had two visions in the past 3 days - the one that morning where Jesus Himself appeared to him, walking past him and turning to smile.  He had explained that before he was going to meet me again or do anything else in terms of moving towards Christ, that he had asked the Lord "to appear" to him.  He said that the vision he had had that very morning was a direct answer to that prayer.

I felt like the meaning of the vision was that Jesus was inviting him to come and follow Him.  He agreed that that was the meaning.

His final words to me were, "I am now ready".

We will be meeting again soon to talk about how he can start that relationship with Christ.

very, very exciting to see someone come out of the darkness and begin to follow The Light of the World!

Lebanese Druze man experiences a measure of healing

Last night Isaac of Ninevah and I met with with a Lebanese Druze man with a seriously injured shoulder - after falling and dislocating it, he has been in pain and with very limited movement for several months.  He has received prayer a couple of times from a couple of Christian friends but it still remained a problem.  We met with him to pray once again and we had a chance to pray for his shoulder maybe 5 or 6 times - breaking off the shock and trauma from the accident, releasing the Kingdom of God and also coming against any spiritual forces of darkness hindering him from being healed.  The Druze (another Middle Eastern religion) are very open to ministry and he allowed us to pray as much as we wanted.

We saw him regain a significant range of motion and movement - probably about 40% better than when we started but we couldn't get any further breakthrough.  We have scheduled another time to pray with him later this week.  We will ask the Lord for insight and a strategy for the that prayer time.  In the mean time, we prayed he would be visited by an angel.

Praying for the sick has a mysterious element.  Sometimes we see total healing and other times we see 50%, 75% or even 90%.  I know when we look at the ministry of Jesus, our "model" of course is 100% but we must also acknowledge that we are growing in grace and faith and have yet to arrive at full maturity.  Maturity IS A PROCESS as we grow in the grace of God regardless of the what the extreme grace teachers are mistakenly teaching (see my previous post - "The Grace Deformation" - http://joel2generation.blogspot.com/2014/04/the-grace-deformation.html).

We continue to grow into greater maturity in praying for the sick.  We continue to learn new things.  We trust in God's sovereignty as He anoints us with measures of His power even as He grows us into greater places of faith.  We press on.

April 28, 2014

The Grace "Deformation"

Is there a "Grace Reformation" taking place today in the Body of Christ? Some are claiming there is and that it is as important as the Protestant Reformation. Quite a claim! They speak of a "new understanding" of grace that has been lost since the days of the Apostles and that a "Revolution" is underway to recover that which was lost. Its advocates call it the "Grace Message" and they refer to themselves as "Grace Teachers". The implication of course is that those who disagree with them are somehow 'not' teaching grace, or are perverting and/or diluting it.

Clearly a debate is raging today in the Body of Christ about the doctrine of grace. In some ways, it is the continuation of a theological discussion that was sparked in the Protestant Reformation, although those who know Church History know that these very issues were debated from the 2nd century onwards. In short, it is now being claimed by this new "Grace Camp" that the Reformers got it right on the doctrine of justification by grace through faith, but got it wrong about sanctification. These Grace teachers argue that the Reformers didn't go far enough believing that Luther and Calvin were teaching a "works" doctrine when it came to our sanctification which the Reformers taught was a PROCESS in which we cooperate with God's grace as we are transformed into the likeness of Christ. These new teachers believe that there is no process; that our sanctification is complete at conversion even as our justification is.  Not only did the Reformers disagree with them, but so has every other Christian leader before them in Church History! (except ironically some gnostic heretics)

Even as they are calling it a "Grace Reformation," I believe that when we look at the ENTIRE* New Testament, we must conclude that it is in fact a "Grace Deformation" and a perversion of the Apostolic faith. These are strong words and yet when we consider what's at stake, I believe we must call out a false doctrine and identify it as such. (*When I say "entire", see my post about Hyper Grace citing the dozens of NT verses that these Grace teachers ignore or attempt to explain away. http://joel2generation.blogspot.com/2013/05/hyper-grace-vs-entire-new-testament.html)

The main problem and the primary reason the "Grace Deformers'" message is false isn't so much because they are introducing unBiblical concepts (although some of ideas clearly are like future sins being forgiven before they are ever committed), but rather their message is false because it only "selectively" uses the New Testament. They find all the verses and passages that support their viewpoint and interpretation, and then either try to explain away or simply ignore the passages that contradict their understanding. The way this becomes a false teaching is that it takes one truth to an extreme while denying other equally as important passages of Scripture. It is essentially the sin of omission - omitting huge sections of the New Testament that simply don't "fit" their understanding of Grace. Neglecting the clear teaching of multiple passages in God's Word constitutes "false teaching".

The true Grace message will always bring Kingdom Reformation.  This "false" one, which they have perverted and diluted, is leading and will lead to what I am now calling a "Grace Deformation".

muslim woman's deaf ear opens and she quickly departs

While shopping yesterday, I walked past a couple of Gulf Arab muslim women and I got a clear word of knowledge about a right ear problem.  I engaged them and asked about a right ear problem.  One of them said, “Yes, I can’t hear anything from my right ear”.  I explained that God had revealed her problem to me and didn’t even ask her if I could pray.  I instructed to put her own hand on her deaf ear.  She agreed.  I prayed a quick healing prayer in Arabic in Jesus’ Name and when she took her hand away I asked her how it was.  She tapped her ear and I asked, “Can you hear?” and she replied with a shocked look, “Yes!”.  So I confirmed, clarifying that she could not hear at all before and was now able to hear.  She confirmed that and then quickly shook my hand (which they don’t do) and left immediately.

She obviously didn’t have any grid for a non-muslim to bring God’s power and healing.  Pray for her that she will be considering the very Jesus who opened her deaf ear!

April 23, 2014

Iranian muslim women healed

On Tuesday night, we went to the Iranian Fire Celebration at the beach. As we arrived, everyone was sitting in large family groups on picnic blankets and I was a bit worried about language barriers.

We walked towards the beach but turned around, as boys were throwing fire crackers. A large group of about six to eight women were walking towards us and since one was uncovered (and I thought she might speak English), I decided to ask them about the Celebration.

They didn't speak English but they had very minimal grasp of some words so we were able to communicate a bit. There was one Indian lady with them who spoke more than the others and she translated a bit. They were very friendly.

Then, God showed me that one of the ladies had leg pain. I asked if I could pray and they said yes. I prayed once and they phoned their nephew to come and translate (which I was worried about, from previous experience, as he was a young, single man).

After he arrived, we prayed a few times and the pain left. Then, two others immediately wanted prayer to have babies. We kiss-kissed each other on the cheeks several times and they all wanted photos. My mom and I were blatantly praying in Jesus' name throughout.

Then, God gave me a Word of Knowledge for back pain and two of the ladies said that they had it. Before we could pray, they grabbed us and led us back to their blanket to have tea.

At the blanket, we ate tea and breadsticks. Then, we prayed for the first lady with back pain and God healed her. We also prayed for her to have a baby and then we prayed for the second woman's back, knees and for her to have a baby. For both ladies, we probably prayed three times for the back pain (in Jesus' name) before it left and the whole time, the nephew was translating.

I then asked if any of the ladies' had had any interesting dreams. One had one that was more from her heart, but God gave me the interpretation.

At this point, the Indian woman and a few others left to buy KFC. This was important, as she was the only other person that spoke a decent amount of English.

Then, the nephew said to me, "I have a secret to tell you, but you can't tell my aunts." I thought, "Oh great, the pick-up I had been dreading," a common occurrence in this part of the world, He again emphasized to me that I could not tell his aunts and I agreed,

At this point, he popped out with the last thing  expected him to say at this moment. I was stunned beyond belief when he said, "I want to be Christian. When I read the K, it is all violence. I read lots about Christianity on the internet and my aunts ask me why I have pictures of Mary and Jesus in my room. How do I become a Christian? I was going to leave and go somewhere far away because they will kill me."

In a nutshell, I quickly told him a 30 second gospel. Then, I got ahold of two men in our group, who were nearby. Afterwards, they told me that while they were praying for the night, they prayed that God would send us someone who would say, "What must I do to be saved."  Amazing!

April 22, 2014

one Hindu healed, one Muslim not healed

One criticism with many who speak about Christians healing the sick is that they often don’t share about the non-healings.  We don’t want to give the impression that everyone is healed, all the time when in fact they are not.

Today I walked into a shop and began speaking with one of the Indian Hindu employees.  I asked if he had neck/shoulder pain because I was sensing something.  He did not (which also shows that words of knowledge aren’t always right!) but he said he had lower and middle back problems.  I asked him to put his hand on the affected area and I prayed a quick prayer in Jesus’ Name releasing healing.  After the first prayer, he told me it was about 50% better.  He was intrigued.  I asked him to put his hand on his back again, prayed another healing prayer and with a big smile on his face told me that he was pain free and that all movement had returned.  He told me that his back problem had been constant for 2-3 years and he told me it was gone.  I was able to communicate to him that is was Jesus Christ who had healed him out of His great love for him.  It was at that time he told me he was Hindu (from his name I already suspected it).

5 minutes later I found myself in another shop and one of the Egyptian Muslim employees limped out of the store for a short break.  I asked one of his colleagues what happened to him, and he told me that he had broken his ankle two months ago falling off a ladder.  When he returned, I asked him if I could pray for him in Arabic (literally “read over him” which is a way of describing healing prayer that Muslims understand).  He agreed, sat down and I had him put his own hand on his ankle while I prayed for him in Arabic.  After prayer, I had him get up and walk around a bit and he told me there was no improvement.  I told him briefly about a gifted Coptic priest who also prayed for the sick that I had learned a lot from.  I told him to check him out on the internet.  He said he would.  But he wasn’t healed.

This is often the kind of thing that we’ll see when we offer to pray for the sick in public places.  One is healed, one isn’t.  The why/why not questions never get answered.  I always ask them anyway.  I have some ideas.  

One thing I do know is that one more person was healed today in Jesus’ Name than if I hadn’t prayed for the two men.

March 26, 2014

Hindu woman's pain leaves

I noticed a woman with her daughter yesterday and the mother had her hand bandaged.  I asked what happened.  She had slammed her hand in a car door and was in pain.  I asked her daughter (about 10 years old) to put her hand on her mother’s hand and I prayed in the Name of Jesus, breaking off the shock and trauma and releasing the Kingdom.  After praying, she looked at me and said, “It’s magic!” wondering what I had done.  I told her that it was God’s power and that Jesus had come to heal her.  She said, “Thank you for manifesting Jesus to me today”. 

March 16, 2014

Who was the "Real" St. Patrick?

On the occasion of St. Patrick’s Day, I thought I would re-post this about the “real” Patrick.  Most of what I have written here comes from a couple of books about his life and ministry – one is a biography entitled Let Me Die in IrelandThe True Story of Patrick by David Bercot (Scroll Publishing, 1999) and the other, “The Celtic Way of Evangelism – How Christianity Can Reach the West Again” (George G. Hunter III, Abingdon Press, 2000).  Many Christians today “claim” Patrick as their own – most are surprised that he doesn’t really fit any modern labels that we might try to put on him or the movement he birthed.  

Patrick was NOT a Roman Catholic, but rather a British Roman citizen born in the late 4th century (AD386) on the West Coast of Britain.  He was a part of the independent British or Celtic Church which did not come under Roman control until the 6-8th centuries.  His father was an ordained Deacon and his grandfather had been an ordained Presbyter, but Patrick as a young man didn’t show a tremendous amount of interest in the things of the Lord. 

God had a radical way of getting this boy’s attention.  As a 16 year old, he was captured by Irish raiders who took him back to Ireland where he was a slave for six years.  It was during this “captivity” that Patrick really came into a relationship with the Lord.  His role was to shepherd flocks and he became a man of prayer.  In his own words,  

  • “After I had arrived in Ireland, I found myself pasturing flocks daily, and I prayed a number of times each day.  More and more the love and fear of God came to me, and faith grew and my spirit was exercised, until I was praying up to a hundred times every day and in the night nearly as often”.

He learned the Gaelic language (the language of the Irish people) fluently and developed a heart for the very people that enslaved him.  After 6 years, God miraculously enabled him to escape.

The Lord spoke to him in a dream saying, - “You are going home.  Look! Your ship is ready”.  The following morning the Lord led him to the coast where he found a ship and sailed away from Ireland.  Upon being reunited with his family in Britain, he never intended to set foot in Ireland again. 

God spoke to Patrick in a dream to return to Ireland to bring the Pagan Irish (who were in bondage to Druidism and other pagan beliefs) the Gospel.  In the dream an Angel gave him letters from his former captors asking him to return and he then heard the Irish calling out to him, “Please, holy servant boy, come and walk among us again”.  It was God who called Patrick to take the Gospel to the Irish, not the Pope of Rome as some have mistakenly taught.  He was ultimately sent out by the independent British/Celtic Church as a pioneer missionary to the Ireland.  Interestingly, the Bishop of Rome had sent a missionary to Ireland about the same time, who lasted about one year before returning. 

At the time Patrick was sent to Ireland, in 432AD, he was a Bishop (or Overseer) of over 40 years of age.  He took with him several younger ordained presbyters, who he had taught Gaelic in Britain.  In the face of great danger, and unbelievable hardship, this band of missionaries began to bring the Gospel to the pagan Druid Irish and God powerfully blessed their work.  In 28 years of ministry which history records was full of Biblical signs and wonders, 30 to 40 of Ireland’s 150 tribes were Christian, between 200 to 700 churches had been planted and over 1000 local Irish leaders had been ordained.  Truly their ministry was both the WORD (preaching) the SPIRIT (signs, wonders and miracles).

The Irish Church became a major missionary Church (arguably the greatest in Church History) in the following few centuries, taking the Gospel to other pagan peoples in Scotland and even Northern Europe.

Patrick was a man of prayer and fasting.  He was a man who lived like Christ – he never married, he forfeit his worldly inheritance (he was from a wealthy British family) and suffered great hardship for the sake of the Gospel.

Patrick’s vision to reach the Pagan Irish was resisted by his own British Church – it was considered too dangerous, an impossible task and it would be an understatement to say that the “civilized” (Romanized) British Christians weren’t racist towards the “barbaric” Pagan Irish.  When the Church today considers the task of evangelizing the Muslim World – (i.e. Arabs, Afghans, Iranians or even followers of ‘Al Qaeda’) or other places full of hostility and conflict, let us remember the fearless commitment of these 5th century Apostolic teams who literally won an entire nation who the Church in their day didn’t love and considered unreachable.  

Patrick and his spiritual descendants were really a mixture of different Christian traditions – in some ways you could say he/they embodied the “best of” many Christian backgrounds/traditions and yet would serve to challenge all of us to recover things that we may have lost, rejected or deemphasized depending upon our own spiritual heritages. 

On a day when people are caught up in all sorts of twisted St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, may we be reminded of the real man behind the ‘myth’.  May it open doors with others who most likely don’t know anything beyond leprechauns, 4-leafed clovers and pinching people who aren’t wearing green.

God Bless you on this St. Patrick’s Day.

DJ

His final words recorded in his Confessions are humbling:

  • "But I pray those who believe and fear God, whosoever has designed to scan or accept this document, composed in Ireland by Patrick the sinner, and unlearned man to be sure, that none should ever say that it was my ignorance that accomplished any small thing which I did or showed in accordance with God's will; but judge ye, and let it be most truly believed, that it was the gift of God.  And this is my confession before I die.

February 14, 2014

healings at breakfast

Yesterday while out to breakfast with Desert Princess, I told our server that my wife brought healing to people when she prayed.  The first who came was a Catholic woman with a back problem.  My wife put her hand on back, and prayed. She was healed – full mobility with no more pain.  What ensued was a discussion of her getting back into Christian fellowship and we offered to help her find a Bible study close to where she lived.

Next a hindu woman was brought up who had a headache.  It was bothering her and it was only the morning.  Desert Princess had her put her own hand on her head, prayed and her headache left.  She clearly had an encounter with the Lord and was shocked. After clearly telling her it was Jesus who healed her, she said,  "I know Jesus is with us always".  We pray that this hindu woman who has now encountered Christ, would be asking questions of the many Christian colleagues she works with.

February 03, 2014

when the healing comes OUR way!

so I've been limping around pretty badly with a knee injury for about 5 days. today wasn't great. BUT, tonight my son and a friend went to an Iranian restaurant in nearby. I knew our waitress was Pentecostal (Filipina) and I limped in there and asked her if she'd pray for my knee. she said she would. when she finally did, she laid hands on my knee and prayed like a 3-4 minute prayer, praying in tongues and calling on the Name of Jesus. During the prayer, I got a word of knowledge of her wrist and got to pray for her and she was healed! But what happened next? I got up to walk around and test out my knee and NO KIDDING, easily 50-60% improvement - walking without a limp. I got home and was actually jogging a bit around the house. Let's just say that our Filipina waitress brought the sauce tonight! Rejoicing!!!!!

January 17, 2014

Part 2 - Humble thoughts about "Forsaking All"

This week a group of us gathered to watch the new film about the life and ministry of Heidi Baker entitled Compelled by Love (available at: https://www.compelledbylovethefilm.com)

It was a powerful film to say the least.  To see the level of devotion of this woman, and those involved in her ministry to the poorest of the poor, the most broken of the broken, the most abused of the abused, challenged me the core.  

Now you will see why I did a "Part 1" (http://joel2generation.blogspot.com/2014/01/part-1-are-we-expected-to-obey-jesus.html) post referring to the commandments of Jesus and His teachings.  You see Heidi & Rolland Baker surrendered EVERYTHING to follow Jesus – they gave their lives, their resources, their health, their families – EVERYTHING to follow Christ into the poorest regions on the planet.  Why would they have done something like this?  Here is most likely one of the passages that they have based their entire lives upon – get ready, Jesus taught and commanded this.  It came BEFORE the Cross and yet, devoted Christians have always understood that this passage to be applicable to New Covenant believers.  

Luke 14:25-27, 33 - Now large crowds were going along with Him; and He turned and said to them,  If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple. Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. …So then, none of you can be My disciple who does not give up all his own possessions. (NASB).  The older translations called this last verse - "forsaking all" to follow Christ.

Heidi and Rolland Baker have inspired thousands upon thousands to do exactly what they have done.  To give up their own lives, for the sake of Christ and the expansion of God's Kingdom.  The first disciples did the same thing, they "dropped their nets", and left their families to follow Christ.  What is interesting is that once Jesus died on the Cross, rose from the dead and ascended into heaven, these disciples didn't stop obeying Christ's command as if it no longer applied as being "Old Covenant".  No, they continued to obey his teachings and the Great Commission until each and every one of them, except the Apostle John died a martyr's death.

I am reminded of what Deitrich Bonhoeffer,  the German Lutheran pastor who was martyred by Hitler, wrote in his famous book The Cost of Discipleship, "When Christ calls a manhe bids him come and die." 

It was also Bonhoeffer who likened much of the the Christianity of his day to "cheap grace".  Also from The Cost of Discipleship, he put it this way, "Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession.... Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate.” 

In a day when teachers who claim to be teaching the true message of grace are in fact teaching what Bonhoeffer called "cheap grace", we would be wise to reject any teaching that waters down or neglects the centrality of Christ's own words.  They weren't put in red letters for nothing!

Thank you Heidi and Rolland Baker for showing us all what it looks like to forsake everything to follow Christ.  We are challenged, we are humbled and we are called to examine our own lives once again before the Lord and recommit ourselves to His Lordship.