Tuesday, October 6, 2015


Do visitors sense the presence of Jesus in your household? Does the aroma of His holiness permeate your family, your marriage, your relationships? Are there tears of intercession by family members, cries of brokenness, a sincere desire to make all wrongs right? Or, does the flesh rule?

Every Christian household ought to be an elevated place, a mountain of separation from the world and the flesh, a holy banqueting hall with Christ. Yet this doesn’t happen in many Christian homes because they’ve been defiled by filth. Lewd, vile wickedness is allowed in through TV and the Internet.

How amazed the angels must be as they witness such evil in households that ought to be cultivating Jesus’ presence. Multitudes of Christians now spend their time dabbling in Internet porn, renting sensual videos, drinking in corruption on TV and actually paying to attend movies that blaspheme Christ’s name. And then they wonder why the pall of spiritual death hovers over their home.

It is the Holy Spirit’s work to bring and maintain the presence and power of Christ in our homes, our churches, our hearts. But multitudes continue to grieve the Spirit with idolatry. What sense does it make for us to pray for unsaved loved ones when our own homes are defiled?

God intends to work an amazing array of miracles that will overwhelm our minds and hearts. And He’s had all this planned since before the world existed. If He has devised such a covenant plan, then it must and will happen. Yet some aren’t going to make it to the banquet table. Those who have grown lukewarm, lovers of ease, people who’ve given themselves to the world’s pleasure-madness—none of these will be at the feast. The prophet Isaiah describes those who are present at the banquet table this way: “In this mountain shall the Lord of hosts make unto all people a feast of fat things, a feast of wines on the lees, of fat things full of marrow, of wines on the lees well refined” (Isaiah 25:6). This speaks of a people who aren’t satisfied with just the milk of God’s Word. These servants love their Lord’s reproof. They hunger for meaty truth; a godly word from tested, tried shepherds; a message set on fire by the Holy Ghost. And they seek God’s Word daily for themselves, thirsty to taste His refined, aged wine.

Monday, October 5, 2015

THE GUIDE by Gary Wilkerson

Several years ago a group of friends and I took a road trip to San Antonio, Texas, to see the Alamo. One of the guys on our team offered to navigate for us. “That’s my hometown and I’d love to be your guide,” he said. But once we arrived in San Antonio, things got a little confusing when a few of us noticed we had passed the same store three times.

“Hey, aren’t we going in circles?” someone asked. “No, no, we’re getting close,” my friend assured us.

We found ourselves in a rough part of town—then in a massive traffic jam—then going in circles again. Finally, someone said to my friend, “Hey, I thought you knew your way around. You said this was your hometown.” “It is,” he answered, “but we moved away when I was two.”

Obviously, Michael wasn’t our ideal guide. He had good intentions but no idea where to lead us. He represents the kind of guide we may think we want in life, but one that ends up leading us in circles instead of into the rich and satisfying life Jesus designed for us.

Another kind of guide may have the right information but may be missing other essentials. My wife, Kelly, and I went on a mission trip to the Philippines. On our day off, we took a guided canoe tour. The crew consisted of several small but athletic Filipinos. At one point we came to a place in the river too shallow to float through. “Uh-oh,” I thought, “this must be the end of the line.” To my surprise, our strong young guides lifted up our canoe—with Kelly and me still in it!—and carried it to deeper waters. “Wow,” I thought, “talk about reliable guides!”

Later, we came to a beautiful spot where the river widened, and the leader signaled for us to stop rowing. “Oh, good,” I thought, “now we’re going to hear some rich history. Maybe this is where the country’s democratic leaders planned their revolution.” Visibly excited, our guide pointed and exclaimed, “Here on this spot is where the movie Rambo was made!”

That was a little disappointing. But soon we came to another beautiful spot where the river opened up to a lush, green field. It looked like the kind of place where an historic battle might have taken place. “On this spot,” said the guide, clearing his throat, “Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie had a picnic!”

There are some guides in life who have the knowledge to get us through some troubling dilemmas. But do they also have the knowledge to carry us to the abundant life Jesus promises?

“I came that they may have life and have it abundantly” (John 10:10, ESV).

Saturday, October 3, 2015

A BENEVOLENT LOVE by Carter Conlon

After having denied Jesus three times—just as the Lord had said he would—Peter must have realized the impossibility of obeying the Lord’s commandment in his own strength. Jesus had said to the disciples, “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another” (John 13:34-35).

It was not until the Day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit came upon the 120 disciples in the Upper Room that Peter finally stepped into the place where he had been able to follow. Suddenly he burst forth into the marketplace and began speaking boldly to a blood-thirsty crowd. He was now enabled by the Spirit of God to be given for others—even those who were resisting their own salvation. It was truly an amazing moment.

As we do things God’s way, God will be our supply and will meet our needs. The Bible tells us that “they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. And all that believed were together, and had all things common; and sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need” (Acts 2:41-45).

The believers held all things in common! There was such a fervency, such a baptism of the love of God, that people even began to sell lands and houses and lay the money at the apostles’ feet for distribution to those in need among the body of believers. Wherever God pours out His Spirit, a benevolence comes into the hearts of the people. It is a generous and compassionate love that causes them to look away from their own needs and instead see the needs of others—which is what this new commandment entails.


Carter Conlon joined the pastoral staff of Times Square Church in 1994 at the invitation of the founding pastor, David Wilkerson, and was appointed Senior Pastor in 2001. A strong, compassionate leader, he is a frequent speaker at the Expect Church Leadership Conferences conducted by World Challenge throughout the world. 

Friday, October 2, 2015


In Isaiah 25 God shows the prophet a lavish, supernatural banquet taking place on a mountain: “In this mountain shall the Lord of hosts make unto all people a feast of fat things, a feast of wines on the lees, of fat things full of marrow, of wines on the lees well refined” (Isaiah 25:6).

Do you get what Isaiah is saying here? This marvelous feast will take place just prior to Jesus’ return. At that time, God’s people won’t be mourning, wallowing in fear, stressed out and defeated. They won’t appear as frail, skeletal figures of spiritual leanness. No, Christ is going to return to find His people feasting on “fat things full of marrow.”

God Himself has prepared this feast. And right now, in this final hour, the banquet is already in progress. The Lord is telling us, in essence, “I’ve saved the best wine for last. And now I’m pouring it forth for My people. They are feasting on wonderful things in My presence.”

I see this incredible feast taking place as I travel all over the world. Young men and women of God are hungry for a gospel that touches them deep in their spirits. They have rejected the gospels of hype, crowds and professionalism. They seek only to be shut in with Jesus, to receive revelation from Him. And they are coming forth from prayer with a fire that stirs everyone around them.

Now, the mountain where this feast takes place is very significant. It represents a holy place, a house where the presence of Christ is manifest. It’s a place where God’s people commune and sup with Him, worshiping Him in spirit and in truth. This mountain of God’s presence is an important concept for His people. Everything the Lord is doing in these last days is closely tied to His presence. And His feast of fat and wine can only take place where Jesus’ presence is manifest.

Now, when I speak of Christ’s manifest presence, I’m not talking about something mystical and otherworldly. Whenever Jesus makes Himself known, everyone present senses it. The Psalmist says the hills melt like wax in the Lord’s presence (see Psalm 97:5). Simply put, every spiritual wall and fleshly blockade evaporates when Jesus makes Himself known. Christ’s presence is so real when it is manifested that you can almost touch it.

Thursday, October 1, 2015


Right now, we are living in the biblical period known as the “latter rain” and God’s plan has been set in motion. All around the world, the high walls of Satan’s city are coming down.

Think about what has happened to Communism. Literal walls have come down in Germany, Russia and throughout Eastern Europe. Millions of people who once lived under Satan’s tyranny are being freed, and many are hearing the gospel preached for the first time. A “strong people,” once hardened in sin, are now praising God.

I tell you, we are living in a special time. I have never seen anything like it in my fifty-plus years of ministry. Our team conducted a crusade in Nigeria, and 500,000 people came on a single night. There is a hunger for God that seems to be unprecedented as we are seeing things happen I never would have dreamed possible.

One of those wonders is taking place in Iran. Several decades ago, my book The Cross and the Switchblade was printed covertly there. An estimated 25,000 copies have been in circulation. Also, the Jesus film has been shown in secret to hundreds of groups. Now hundreds of thousands of Iranians are being saved through gospel messages such as these.

I recently received a stirring report about a Teen Challenge drug program in a Middle Eastern nation I’m not allowed to name. This Islamic country is riddled with alcoholism and drug addiction. Government officials admit that the problem is over their heads, yet through the delivering power of Jesus Christ, the Teen Challenge program has produced hundreds of graduates who have been saved, delivered and set free.

One graduate is now the overseer of a Pentecostal denomination there. He says that the nation’s drug czar attended Teen Challenge’s graduation ceremony. This prominent Islamic leader heard dozens of young men stand up and testify of how Jesus healed them of their addictions. (What the czar probably didn’t know is that over one hundred graduates have gone on to start churches in that nation.) The government now recognizes Teen Challenge as the most successful drug program in the country.

It’s happening all over the world in unbelievable ways: Satan’s walled city is coming down!

“And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh” (Acts 2:17).

Wednesday, September 30, 2015


Isaiah 25 describes an incredible vision. In it, the prophet Isaiah is transported into the future, to the very last days. Bible commentators agree that this is one of the clearest pictures in Scripture concerning the end times. Isaiah shows us precisely what God intends for the nations and for His Church just prior to the end. And right now, we are living in the very hour Isaiah describes.

In the first five verses, Isaiah outlines what God has in store for the nations. In an instant, God reduces Satan’s empire to rubble. And suddenly the nations being held under demonic tyranny are set free. Isaiah breaks into jubilant praise at the sight: “O Lord, thou art my God; I will exalt thee, I will praise thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things; thy counsels of old are faithfulness and truth” (Isaiah 25:1). He is saying, “Lord, You’re never taken by surprise. You’ve done great wonders in the past, and now You have a plan for this hour. You ordained it from the foundation of the world.”

As Isaiah watches God’s plan unfold, it thrills his soul. He exclaims for generations to follow: “In the last days, God is going to crush and annihilate Satan’s power. These palaces of strange demonic beings will be brought to ruin and the devil’s city will be reduced to a pile of dust.”

Chains begin to drop off the masses who have been bound. They are being freed from satanic prisons of fear and sin. Isaiah calls them “a strong people,” meaning “a once sin-hardened people.” And he tells us these same people begin to glorify God. For years they were terrified of their oppressor, Satan, but now they fear only the Lord, the one who delivered them.

In that hour, verse four will be fulfilled for the whole world to see: “Thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall” (25:4).

I see this happening even now for millions of people all over the world. The poor in spirit are becoming strong. The needy are being rescued. And the distressed are finding an abundance of peace. Christ has become their protection, their refuge, their defender, their hiding place. When a blast of fiery temptation comes at them, it hits a holy wall surrounding them and disintegrates. And Satan’s once-fierce attacks fall harmlessly to the ground.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015


One Saturday evening, I walked down to Times Square as it bustled with tourists and others doing holiday shopping. It is estimated that at rush hour, nearly a quarter of a million people pass through that area. As I stood there, I prayed while watching the masses of people.

At one point, the Holy Spirit whispered to me, “David, take a look at these throngs. Multiply them several times, and that’s how many of my people died in the wilderness. Out of all those masses, only two entered into my rest, Joshua and Caleb. Everyone else died before their time, in despair and unbelief.”

The thought was overwhelming to me. As I watched the crowds, I realized they all had the gospel message available to them at any time, through television, radio, literature, even free Bibles in their hotel rooms. If only they wanted to know, they would be told that the same God who performed miracles for ancient Israel does the same for all who love Him today. Yet these don’t want to know Him. If they see someone handing out a gospel tract, they race by and wave him away. They have no gods but pleasure, money and possessions.

Suddenly, I began to see the value of a single believer in God’s eyes. And I hear Jesus asking the same question today: “When I return, will I find faith in the earth?” (see Luke 18:8). I see Christ, the searcher of men’s hearts, scouring all these venues, and finding few who truly love Him. I see Him searching college campuses, asking, “Who here will believe Me?” I see Him searching Washington, D.C., for those who would accept Him, and finding few. I see Him searching entire nations, and finding only a remnant.

Finally, He searches His church, looking for servants with a true faith. Yet, what He sees breaks His heart, grieving Him deeply. I hear Him cry as He did over Israel, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem . . . how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!” (Matthew 23:37).

As a minister of the Lord, I bear my Shepherd’s burden. And I feel His grief. Right now, I hear Him saying, “Even in My house, I find so few who have faith. Many of My own children, including My shepherds, faint in their times of trial. They don’t trust Me for their families, their jobs, their futures. Indeed, many have made their choice.”

So, what about you? The Lord comes to all of us, asking, “Will you believe Me? Do you trust Me? When I come, will I find faith in you?” How will you respond?