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Archive for May, 2009

Let’s talk some more about heaven!

Friday, May 29th, 2009 Posted in Harvest Crusades, Pastor's corner, sermons | 3 Comments »

This Sunday at Harvest,we will talk some more about heaven! I love this topic and really want to learn as much as I possibly can.

This Sunday,we will deal with issues like:

  • Do people in heaven know what is going on here on earth?
  • Are they watching us?
  • What are the rewards the Christian will receive in heaven?


The New York Harvest is coming

Our next Harvest Crusades event is just around the corner. The dates are June 13-14 at the Nikon at Jones Beach Theater on Long Island.

So if you are on the East Coast, I hope to see you there. This crusade will also be webcast live, so think about who you could invite to watch it with you!

For more info on this event, click here.

Michael Franzese at Harvest

It was my privilege  to interview former Mob kingpin Michael Franzese at Harvest this last Sunday.

His story is absolutely amazing, as he has turned his back on his life of crime and is now serving the Lord. It just goes to show that no one is beyond the reach of prayer! Don’t ever write anyone off, thinking they could never come to Christ.

The Bible reminds us “With God, all things are possible!” Michael’s story certainly illustrates that.

Click here for an HD version of our interview. I encourage you to click the icon that will make it full screen. The quality of this video is very impressive.

Don’t forget to send a link to a friend too.

Interview with Michael Franzese

Thursday, May 28th, 2009 Posted in video | 18 Comments »

Tonight in OC!

Thursday, May 28th, 2009 Posted in sermons | 2 Comments »

Hey everyone,

Tonight at our Orange County study, we will be in our Essentials series looking once again at the topic of heaven!

It seems to me that as Christians we should be more heavenly-minded. Paul tells us in Colossians 3 to “Seek the things that are above,” or as another translation puts it, “Think Heaven!”

So tonight, we will learn more about how to do that and what we specifically will do when we get to heaven. Please join us and bring someone with you who does not yet know the Lord, as I will give an invitation at the end of the service for people to come to Christ.

The Katinas will be with us!

The Katinas, a very talented group of Christian brothers from Samoa, will be doing special music. You will not want to miss them. This will make, I am sure, for a very special night.

Hope to see you there.

The bubble that bursts!

Wednesday, May 27th, 2009 Posted in essentials, OC, Pastor's corner, sermons | 1 Comment »

Tonight, I will be giving a message from the fascinating book of Ecclesiastes.

One word that appears a number of times in this autobiographical book, written by King Solomon, is  the word “vanity.” The word “Vanity” that is used here is not speaking of personal vanity, as in spending too much time in front of their mirror every day.

There are, of course, people like that who “never met a mirror they did not like.”

The word used here, in the original language, means, “emptiness, futility, meaninglessness, ‘a wisp of a vapor,’ ‘a hollow, empty ring,’ nothingness, or a bubble that bursts.”

Nothing will fill the void in your life except God.

Solomon–who went on a backslide and pretty much tried everything this world has to offer–is telling us that there is nothing on this Earth
that will satisfy us completely, apart from God. No thing, no pleasure, no relationship, nothing he found had enduring value in life.

It’s like riding one of those stationary bikes. You pedal and pedal, but never really go anywhere. They have high-tech ones now where you can watch a video of a road with some beautiful scenic landscape, but the fact is that when you get off that bike, you are in the same place you were when you started.

If you want to know more, come join us or watch the webcast. It all happens at Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside at 7:00 P.M., Pacific Time.

O.C. Thursdays

Don’t forget that tomorrow night I will be speaking from my Essentials series in Orange County. My topic is “What We Will Do in Heaven.”

I will also be joined by special musical guests The Katinas!

God’s trade-in deal

Tuesday, May 26th, 2009 Posted in encouragement, essentials, Pastor's corner, sermons | No Comments »

We have been talking about heaven in our Essentials series.

Did you know that the Lord has an amazing trade-in deal in store for you? That’s right, you are going to trade in your existing body, with its aches and pains, for the newest model.

Of course, that is not a perfect analogy, because there will be a link between your old body and your new one.

Here are some thoughts about the new body God has for you when you get to heaven.

Your memory will be clearer!

The blueprints for our glorified bodies are in the bodies we now possess.

Heaven is the Earthly life of the believer, glorified and perfected. When we pass over to the other side, our minds and our memories will be clearer then ever before.

As the apostle Paul writes: “Our bodies now disappoint us, but when they are raised, they will be full of glory. They are weak now, but when they are raised, they will be full of power. They are natural human bodies now, but when they are raised, they will be spiritual bodies”  (1 Corinthians 15:43-44 NLT).

No sinful tendencies

This simply means that our new bodies will be the same as our old bodies in some ways, and different in other ways, but without question radically improved!

No more physical disabilities. No signs of age and no sinful tendencies.

A great quote

Joni Erickson Tada is a quadriplegic who has glorified God despite her disability, which was the result of a diving accident in her youth.

In her book Heaven: Your Real Home, she writes about our new bodies God has for us:

“No more bulging middles or balding tops. No varicose veins or crow’s feet. No more cellulite or support hose. Forget the ‘thunder thighs’ and highway hips.

Just a quick leapfrog over the tombstone, and it’s the body you’ve always dreamed of. Fit and trim, smooth and sleek.”

The Greatness of America

Sunday, May 24th, 2009 Posted in holidays, Pastor's corner | 1 Comment »

Stella Laurie and an American flag (Photo by Christopher Laurie).

Hey everyone!

As you know, Monday is Memorial Day. So when we gather with family and friends for BBQ and celebration, let’s not forget those courageous men and women who have served and even died for the precious freedom we enjoy in the greatest country on earth, the United States of America!

Yes, that’s right. I still think we are the greatest county on earth, despite our flaws and shortcomings. And I believe that is because of our Christian roots, which we stray from at our own peril.

America is great because she is good

Alexis de Tocqueville, a French political thinker and historian wrote a book entitled, Democracy in America. This book was published after his extensive travels in our country when it was still young.

He made the statement about the “greateness” of America that bears remembering:

“I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her commodious harbors and her ample rivers—and it was not there . . . in her fertile fields and boundless forests—and it was not there . . . in her rich mines and her vast world commerce—and it was not there . . . in her democratic Congress and her matchless Constitution—and it was not there. Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because she is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.”

Righteousness exalts a nation

That’s right, our greatness comes from our goodness. It comes from our belief in God’s Word, which gives us the moral compass we need, so we can know right from wrong and good from evil.

In the classic song, “America the Beautiful,” we sing the words, “America, America, God shed His grace on thee.” And that is so true.

God has been gracious to our country, and I pray that we will turn back to Him like never before. I pray it does not take a national crisis to get our attention.

How we need God in America today. And let’s also not forget the Word of God that says, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people” (Proverbs 14:34 NKJV).

Enjoy your freedom!

So today, remember the sacrifices that have been made by those that fought for and fight for us in uniform. And remember the Lord who has blessed this nation in an extraordinary way.

As you get ready to dig in to your burgers, chicken, baked beans, etc., remember to give thanks to the Lord.

The man from the Mafia

Saturday, May 23rd, 2009 Posted in essentials, Pastor's corner, questions, sermons | 1 Comment »

Hey everyone.

Memorial Day weekend is upon us, and we have a lot to be thankful for in America today, despite our shortcomings. I will have a blog post Monday about that, so check it out.

Tomorrow at Harvest, Michael Franzese will be our special guest at all three services.


He was once in the Mafia, and was the target of multiple city, state, and federal law enforcement agencies, all with one goal – bring down the man they considered one of the biggest money-earners for organized crime since Al Capone. The son of legendary Colombo family underboss John “Sonny” Franzese, Michael was the Mafia’s youngest and most financially powerful superstar.

Dubbed by Tom Brokaw as “The Prince of the Mafia,” Michael had a criminal empire that spanned multiple businesses, gambling operations, movie production, white collar crime, and enough volume to earn $6-8 million dollars a week at the height of his career, landing him at #18 on Fortune Magazine‘s “Fifty Most Wealthy and Powerful Mafia Bosses” list in the mid-1980s.

He heard our radio broadcast in solitary confinement

Eventually, Michael was arrested and, as he will share, he came to Christ in prison. While in solitary confinement, he used to listen to our radio broadcast A New Beginning every day.

You will not want to miss his amazing story.

What will we do in heaven?

I will be back in our Essentials series with the message “What We Will Do in Heaven.”

Some people have the mistaken notion that heaven will be a place of boredom. Nothing could be further from the truth! We will be active in heaven, worshipping, eating, praying, and, yes, even working?

Want to know more? Check our webcast this Sunday at Harvest.

WorldNetDaily and Weekend Devotions

Here are links to my weekly article at WorldNetDaily, as well as our long-form devotion that we post every weekend.

American Idol results, South Dakota and the O.C.

Thursday, May 21st, 2009 Posted in Harvest Crusades | 6 Comments »

Hey everyone!

It’s good to be back home here in SoCal. We are still rejoicing in all that the Lord did in South Dakota. What a beautiful place, and what a wonderful and receptive group of people to the gospel there in Rapid City.

I cannot think of any place we have been in the last 20 years where we had stronger support from the media, including the secular media. In many of the articles, a number of quotes from my messages were printed and for that I rejoice.

So thanks again for all your prayers, and please remember that Long Island, New York, is coming, as well as our 20th anniversary Southern California Harvest at Angel Stadium in Southern California. For more information on all of this, go here.

Tonight in Orange County: “Surviving the Shipwrecks of Life”

Tonight at our Thursday study in the O.C., I will be doing a special message titled “Surviving the Shipwrecks of Life.”

The longer I live life, the more convinced I am that you are either coming out of one storm or sailing toward another. But don’t fear, for if you have put your faith in Christ, you can even survive a “shipwreck of life.” We have survived our shipwreck, but we are still looking to the Lord each and every day for strength as we have a long, long ways to go.

American Idol Results

I see that Kris Allen won American Idol this year. I have heard that Kris is a Christian and I think America got this one right. I offer Kris my congratulations and hope that he might use this amazing platform to honor the Lord. He has an amazing talent.

Black Hills Harvest Sunday night slideshow

Monday, May 18th, 2009 Posted in Harvest Crusades, photos, slideshow | 3 Comments »


Ice Cream in the Black Hills

Monday, May 18th, 2009 Posted in family, travel, video | No Comments »

Black Hills Ice Cream from shot by Jonathan