Here are some thoughts on the death of Prince I recorded Sunday.
Below is the article I wrote for WorldNetDaily.com
Prince has died.
He was found unconscious in the elevator of his Paisley Park Estate. This after reports of an emergency landing after a performance, due to “flu-symptoms,” according to his publicist. Reports are coming in that this may be a drug related death.
I don’t know. All I know is a musical virtuoso who mastered almost every instrument at an early age and was an amazing talent, has died.
Prince was a mix of James Brown, Jimi Hendrix and a host of other influences with his own unique sound. As a guitar player alone he was beyond amazing, not to mention his body of work as a singer/songwriter. I remember seeing his performance during a tribute to George Harrison at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, joining in on the Beatles classic, “While My Guitar Gently Weeps.” Showing the link to friends I said, “This is the greatest lead guitar solo of all time!”
So much talent, now gone. I was sad to hear it.
Prince sold 100 million records. One of his most well-known songs, “Let’s Go Crazy,” by Prince and the Revolution, almost seems prophetic now.
Cause in this life
Things are much harder than in the after world
In this life
You’re on your own
And if the elevator tries to bring you down
Go crazy, punch a higher floor.
Ironic that on an elevator Prince Rogers Nelson, age 57, left this world for the next one.
Prince seemed to believe in an afterlife. In his song, “Let’s Go Crazy,” he also sings,
But I’m here to tell you
There’s something else
The after world
A world of never ending happiness
You can always see the sun, day or night.
Prince was right in this regard. There is an afterlife. And if your destination in the afterlife is Heaven, you can know that it is so much better than this life. The Bible describes it as a place of happiness, singing, feasting and being reunited with loved ones who died in faith and preceded us.
People often ask, “What is Heaven like?”
A better question might be, “What is earth like?” Take the greatest moments you have ever experienced on earth and multiply them times a thousand, and you will have a glimpse of Heaven.
Heaven is not a weak imitation of earth. Earth at its best is a pale imitation of this place called Heaven. In the Bible, Heaven is described as a place, a country, a city and much more. Heaven is a real place for real people to do real things.
Best of all, in Heaven we will see Jesus Christ. This promise, however, is only for the person who has put their faith in Him as their Lord and Savior.
Coming back to the elevator for a moment. There are two ways to go, up or down. If you are a believer in Jesus you will go up for sure. But what if you are not a believer in Jesus? Then, according to the Bible, you will go down. Just as surely as there is a Heaven, there is also a hell.
You might ask, “How could a God of love send anyone to a place as horrible as hell?”
The fact is, God’s does not send people to hell. If we end up there, we will have only ourselves to blame.
God doesn’t send people to hell, He saves people from hell. That is why Jesus Christ died on a cross 2,000 years ago. He paid the price for every sin you have ever committed. If you will turn from your sin and believe and trust in Him, you can be forgiven, and yes, you can go to Heaven when you die.
It was only two months ago that musical icon David Bowie died. He too sang of the afterlife.
Death is the great leveler, and no respecter of persons. Elvis, the King of Rock, has died. So has James Brown, the King of Soul. Michael Jackson, the King of Pop has died as well. And now Prince. But the King of Kings,Jesus Christ has died and has risen and is alive forevermore!
He holds the keys to the afterlife. Jesus said,
“I am the living one. I died, but look–I am alive forever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and the grave.” (Revelation 1:18)
One day you and I will also die. But death is not the end. There is an afterlife, as Prince reminded us.
There is an inscription on a tombstone in England that reads:
Pause now stranger, when you pass by.
As you are now, so once was I.
As I am now, so you will be.
So, prepare for death and follow me.
Someone reading this epitaph is reported to have replied out loud, “To follow you is not my intent…until I know which way you went!”
I don’t know where Prince or Bowie went. Only God does. But I do know where I am going when I die.
I’m going up. Which way are you going?
To find out how to be sure you will go to Heaven when you die, visit my website:
This article was written exclusively for WorldNetDaily.com. It is used by permission.
Check out this press release for our new Apple Watch app:
Riverside, CA (June 23, 2015) — Harvest Ministries is excited to launch a new app developed specifically for the Apple Watch to help connect people to the growing ministry led by Greg Laurie.
“Harvest takes very seriously the role of using the influence and resources that God has given us to help make God known to as many people as possible,” says Paul Eaton, Administrative Pastor for Harvest Ministries.
“We have always had a desire to invest in new technologies that help us distribute Harvest content and Greg Laurie’s messages in new ways,” he continues. “This includes the iOS, Android, and Windows phone apps, as well as our Roku app that are all being used by thousands of people each week to hear the gospel. This Apple Watch app creates one more way for people to connect with Greg Laurie and Harvest Ministries.”
The Watch App features daily devotions from Greg Laurie, as well as content from his blog, Twitter, and Instagram accounts.
It also features push notifications, which users can opt out of. Harvest Ministries can push information to users’ watches and iPhones, letting them know about new resources and events.
Greg Laurie serves as senior pastor of one of the largest churches in the U.S., Harvest Christian Fellowship, based in Riverside and Irvine, California, which also oversees the large-scale evangelistic events, Harvest Crusades. The ministry exists for the sole purpose of presenting the life-changing message of Jesus Christ to as many people as possible, and to help believers mature in their faith. More information is available at www.harvest.org.
Have you ever gone to your ATM and read the message, “Insufficient funds”? I have good news for you—If you are a Christian, God has placed more than you will ever need in heavenly resources; as the Bible says, we have “Everything needed for life and godliness” (2 Peter 1:3).
At Harvest Orange County we’ve begun a brand new series in the book of Ephesians. I am calling this series Live, Love, Fight.
It’s hard to believe, but another year has already passed.
I am still wondering where my personal spaceship and robot maid are, as seen in The Jetsons cartoons. Or at least a hoverboard, like Marty McFly had in Back to the Future II.
I would settle for Baymax from Big Hero 6.
Time seems to go so much faster as you get older. But C.S. Lewis said, “The future is something which everyone reaches at the rate of 60 minutes an hour, whatever he does, whoever he is.”
So now, 2014 is in the rearview mirror and we face the uncertainties of a new year. It may contain both promise and pain, triumph and tragedy, happy days and sad ones.
So how are we to look at this new year? With great hope, because our God is on the throne. He is in control of all things, including our lives.
As we enter into a new year, remember that God is in control—that God is sovereign. He always has a plan!
“He does as He pleases among the angels of heaven and among the people of the earth. No one can stop Him or say to Him, ‘What do you mean by doing these things?'” (Daniel 4:35 NLT).
When you put your faith in Jesus Christ, you come under His protective care. God is fully aware of everything that happens to you. And thankfully, God is never asleep on the job. He is always paying careful attention to the smallest details of your life and is in complete control of all circumstances that surround it.
As Solomon observed, “There is a season for everything.” We are not victims of the “fickle finger of fate” or dumb luck. If you are a Christian, then you have come into God’s providence, which means that he will guide and direct your steps. God is doing exactly what He wants to do for His plan and for your good.
Sometimes His plans don’t make sense to us, but remember that He has a plan—and it is a good one!
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV).
In Isaiah 55:8, God says, “My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways” (NKJV). We focus on the immediate. God focuses on the ultimate. Our world is the here and now. God’s plan is over all; it is panoramic.
As Christians we are all a “work in progress” and God will work “all things together.” Did He not do that for you last year? Philippians 1:6 reminds us that we can be “confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ” (NKJV).
Good news: God finishes what He starts!
I think someone should establish a national Law Enforcement Appreciation Day. Maybe they already have. I know I for one appreciate those officers who serve our communities, our nation, and us.
I am a chaplain for two police departments and I personally know a lot of cops. There are also many who attend the church I pastor. I have done too many memorial services for officers killed in the line of duty, and I can tell you that other officers, even if they did not know the person who died, take it very hard. They are a fraternity, a family.
These are people just like us, who have, in many ways, made a sacrifice to literally risk their lives each and every day for relatively little pay. I think this appreciation is overdue, especially in the light of the NYC police officers who were just murdered: Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos. Something that has just come out is that Officer Ramos, who was a Christian, would have been commissioned as a lay chaplain this past Saturday—tragically, the day he was shot.
The Bible tells us that these courageous men and women who serve in law enforcement are doing God’s work: “The authorities are sent by God to help you. But if you are doing something wrong, of course you should be afraid, for you will be punished. The authorities are established by God for that very purpose, to punish those who do wrong” (Romans 13:4).
I know that those in law enforcement are not all perfect, and that there are some bad apples in the mix. But that is true of every profession—including ministry, I might add. But by and large, those that serve us in law enforcement are fine and upstanding people and they deserve our respect and admiration.
So if you see a cop today, let them know you appreciate them!
P.S. If you appreciate police officers, or are one, speak out right here.
Leave your comments.
I am so deeply sorry to report that my friend Frank Pastore has died. I know that Frank is in heaven right now. He was a faithful follower and servant of Jesus Christ. I am confident Frank was welcomed into God’s presence with the words, “Well done, good and faithful servant . . . Enter into the joy of your Lord!”
Christians, in a sense, never really die. We just leave one shore to go to another. Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die.”
It’s heaven’s gain, but it is surely our loss. Frank Pastore was a man of God that used his platform, both as a former major league pitcher and a radio personality, to point people to Jesus Christ.
His broadcast, The Frank Pastore Show, was the number-one talk show in Christian radio, and that was due to the unique gifts God gave to Frank.
Frank loved the gospel. On many occasions, when I had the privilege to be a guest on Frank’s show, he would ask me to present the gospel and invite people to Christ. I always appreciated that.
For many years, we had Frank open in prayer for our Harvest Crusades and he was and is loved by thousands. The sadness we feel right now is not for Frank, for he is with Jesus, where there is “fullness of joy” and “pleasures forevermore.” The sadness we have is for his wife, Gina, and his two children and all of us who will deeply miss him.
After our son Christopher went to be with the Lord, over four years ago, I had many conversations with Frank, both on and off the air, about heaven. Frank believed in heaven with all of his heart and pointed many people there, and now he is in that wonderful place promised to all who trust in Christ.
Let’s all be in prayer for the Pastore family in these very difficult days ahead.
I will miss Frank, but I know I will see him again.
We’re taking over Greg’s Blog to let you know that today is Pastor Greg’s 60th birthday!
Wish him a happy birthday in the comments below!
— The Harvest Staff
Pastor Greg has requested that no gifts be sent for his birthday. If you feel inclined to give something, you can give to the cause of evangelism by donating to Harvest Ministries in his honor here.
Through all the ups and downs, I have found a hope that has sustained me through the dark times and given me peace and confidence at all times. I believe this hope can be yours, no matter what your present situation. But what happens to your hope when life takes a sudden, unwanted turn?
You walk around a corner and find yourself face to face with a personal crisis…the passing of a loved one…the ache of loneliness…the worry over a stormy marriage…the agony of a son or daughter who has chosen a destructive path. The Bible tells us of a hope that will see us through the darkest of valleys and sustain us in the driest of deserts. And beyond the practical help God offers for every situation in this life, He points us toward the ultimate hope of eternal life in heaven, and the unfailing encouragement of our Lord’s any-moment return.
This book will not only help you but will be a tremendous tool as you try to help others going through crisis.
You can order a copy at Amazon.com.
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7 NLT)
One of the first things I remember about the day I put my faith in Christ was the sense of peace filling my heart. It was as though someone had lifted a heavy burden from me.
It wasn’t until later, when I read the Bible, that I learned about God’s promise of peace to every believer. He has given it to us as a gift.
This peace, however, doesn’t come from what or who we are, but from what God has done—how He has justified us in response to our faith. A wonderful byproduct of this reality is a deep inner peace that floods our soul.
You can’t just live as you please
But we can’t have this beautiful effect without the beginning cause. If we are fighting with God—resisting His plan and purpose for our lives—then we won’t experience this supernatural peace.
I think many people would like to have the desirable results and benefits of the Christian life without having to pay the price. In other words, they would like to know that they are forgiven and going to heaven when they die, but they still want to live as they please. They don’t want to put their complete faith and trust in Jesus.
That sort of attitude just won’t fly. We can’t have the pleasing, life-transforming privileges of God’s peace without first meeting God’s requirements. Scripture tells us through Jesus Christ, “God reconciled everything to himself. He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth by means of Christ’s blood on the cross” (Colossians 1:20 NLT).
The only way
The only way we will experience the peace of God that passes all human understanding is through the blood of the cross, the blood that Jesus shed.
You cannot have the peace of God until you first have peace with God.
For we are God’s [own] handiwork (His workmanship), recreated in Christ Jesus, [born anew] that we may do those good works which God predestined (planned beforehand) for us [taking paths which He prepared ahead of time], that we should walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live]. (Ephesians 2:10 AMPLIFIED)
A traveler was visiting a logging area in the Pacific Northwest and was interested in seeing how the logs that would be used for furniture were chosen. As the logs came down the stream, the logger would suddenly reach out and hook one, pull it up, and then set it down. He would sometimes wait for a few minutes before grabbing another. There didn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason to his choices.
After a while, the visitor said to him, “I don’t understand what you’re doing.”
“These logs may all look alike to you,” the logger said, “But I can recognize that a few of them are quite different. The ones that I let pass came from trees that grew in a valley. They were always protected from the storms. The grain is rather coarse.
“The logs that I pulled aside are from high up on the mountain, where they were beaten by strong winds from the time they were quite small. That toughens the trees and gives them a fine grain. We save these logs for choice work. They’re too good to be used for ordinary lumber.”
Ask Peter or Joseph
It was through the trying and testing that the logs were prepared for choice work.
The same could be said of us as Christians. If you were to ask Moses how he became who he was, he would remind you of his trials with Pharaoh and his times of testing in the wilderness. If you were to ask Joseph, he would most likely refer back to his years as a slave, his imprisonment on a false accusation, and his imprisonment in Pharaoh’s dungeon. Talk to Peter, and he would probably point back to his denial and how he learned many difficult yet important lessons.
Maybe you find yourself facing something similar in your life today. Maybe God is preparing you for a choice work.