SUMMER RERUNS: YES, THERE ARE BAD GUYS OUT THERE!

Blog 167, 2017
August 24, 2020

faith

MIRACLES NEVER CEASE

Robert Wise  explores the world of Divine intervention from an objective point of view. Can 21st Century people believe that the hand of God touches people in today’s world?
Read and you’ll find new insights.

The corona-virus pandemic has made it impossible to make contacts. However, I’ve got a mail bag of great stories that I’m recycling. These are my summer reruns.

YES, THERE ARE BAD GUYS OUT THERE!

Are there “swindlers” out there? Sure are.

In the movie Leap of Faith, Steve Martin plays con man Jonas Nightengale who travels from town to town bilking farmers out of their money while he fakes miracles. In the town of Rustwater, Kansas, he sets up his nightly show. The town’s people are so taken that when the sheriff reports Nightengale’s real name is Jack Newton and he has continually been in trouble with the law, they won’t listen. Each night the fraudulent healer wearing a silver-sequined coat hops up and down the aisles while an assistant is in the backroom with television monitors sends him messages through an ear piece. The inside information makes Nightengale appear to have special secrets messages from the Holy Spirit.

The turning point comes when Boyd, a boy on crutches, is actually healed. Nightengale cannot believe what he is seeing and runs, leaving the silver-sequined jacket behind. As he travels away in a hitch-hiked ride, Nightengale tells the driver that he knows “the genuine article” and that a real miracle is not to be toyed with. The movie ends as Nightengale disappears into the night.

Interestingly enough, this movie was based on an actual fraudulent ministry of a Pentecostal type who kept his wife in the back room sending him messages through a hearing aid device. The audience was scanned by accomplices who produced information on the unsuspecting. The last time I saw this character on television, he was promoting “miracle spring water” and was still at it. The tragedy of these charlatans is that they demean the actual interventions of the heavenly Father. They reduce the miraculous to a sideshow, leaving people to go home disillusioned.

Equally tragic is that the antics of these types develop skeptics who see the entire scene as a sham. Both conclusions are equally unfortunate. While we acknowledge the reality of the counterfeit artists and the audience that travels with them to pretend a miracle occurred, we continue to recognize that divine intervention has made a dramatic difference in the journeys of a multitude of grateful people.

The key to the “genuine article” is found in understanding the stories in the scripture. As the Old and New testaments relate the stories of miracles, they contain details that are important in grasping how people like Elisha as well as Jesus Christ ministered.

Discovering the will of God is one of the first steps that unlocks sealed doors.

Stay tuned. More to come.

NANCY STAFFOR: CHRISTIAN IN HOLLYWOOD

Blog 152
April 27, 2020

matlock

MIRACLES NEVER CEASE!

Robert Wise explores the world of divine interventions from an objective point of view. Can 21st century people believe the hand of God still touches people today?

NANCY STAFFOR: CHRISTIAN IN HOLLYWOOD

MATLOCK, the television series with Andy Griffith, has made a new comeback on the Me-TV series. The “good old days” series like Gunsmoke, Carol Burnett, Gomer Pyle, etc. are so much better than most of the contemporary mindless sit-coms that people are tuning them in again.

One of the regulars on MATLOCK was Nancy Stafford who played Andy’s secretary Michelle Thomas. Through the years, Nancy Stafford performed on a host of other shows such as Seasons of Miracles, Quantum Leap, The Mentalists, and a host more. Nancy had the highest praise for Andy Griffith as an actor who cared deeply about what he did. He could memorize the courtroom scenes so well, that at the end of a shooting, everyone clapped. Griffith made sure every aspect of a set was perfect. Nancy adored working with him.

Nancy grew up in a Christian home and was taught that it was important to have a relationship with God. She grew up knowing about divine interventions. However, once she plunged into the acting world, she took a different path for 15 years. Today, she remembers that her personal choices left her a broken person. Going from boyfriend to boyfriend, her career boomed, but her life didn’t. During this time, she studied Buddhism, Rosicrucianism, as well as Hinduism. She had become a religious seeker without answers that worked.

At that point, Nancy discovered she had developed a cancer on her face. Her ‘perfect life” could disappear in an instant. Nancy was in turmoil. She was working on an episode of “Magnum P.I.” in Hawaii and shooting on the beach. Nancy brought her Bible with her and was reading it. As she studied the promises in the Bible, a change began forming. At that moment, she began experiencing an incredible encounter with the Living God. Nancy knew she must depend on Jesus Christ in all of her choices. She realized that the hand of God had enabled her to be a successful actress and would lead her through recovery from the cancer. A divine intervention changed her entire life.

Today, Nancy is an inspirational speaker and works with Christian groups as well as continuing her acting career. She prays about the roles that she accepts. Nancy works to help the public understand God loves them, cares for them, and provides them with hope.

Are divine interventions still possible? Nancy Stafford believes the pages of the scripture can lead anyone to a vital and dynamic relationship with their heavenly Father.

You might find my collection of near-death experiences to be helpful.
CROSSING THE THRESHOLD OF ETERNITY
Robert L. Wise Regal Books

AN INTERVIEW WITH QUENTIN MOORE

MIRACLES NEVER CEASE!

Robert Wise explores the world of divine interventions from an objective point of view. Can 21st century people believe the hand of God still touches people today?

Read or watch and you’ll find new insights.

A SURPRISE FOR YOU

Here is a teaser interview with Quentin Moore and myself discussing a miracle known as the laying on of hands. It is for my upcoming YouTube channel launching soon.

Enjoy!

Quentin Moore Episode 2 from David Canavesio on Vimeo.

 

You might find my collection of Holy Land experiences to be helpful.
BIBLE LANDS: An illustrated Guide to Scriptural Places
Barbpir books Publishers

EASTER CAME EARLY

Blog 149
March 2, 2020

holy communion

MIRACLES NEVER CEASE!

Robert L. Wise explores the world of divine interventions from an objective point of view. Can 21st century people believe the hand of God still touches people today?

Read and you’ll find new insights.

EASTER CAME EARLY

Stovall and Kerri Weems started a congregation with seventeen people in l998. Today, they have over 12,000 members. In 2018, the Weems were holding a Good Friday service when a break through occurred. This year they decided that rather than a regular sermon, they would have a “shared experience” of the resurrection. What brought the change? How did it all happen?

Stovall had heard people say they literally experienced the risen Christ, but he doubted those stories. Of course, he was a dedicated Christian, but he wasn’t sure about those contemporary reports. Then they held a special Jewish traditional Seder Passover service where the pastor could and did pray in Hebrew.  As the pastor was consecrating the bread and wine, speaking Hebrew he said, “Take and eat. This is my body broken for you.”

However, as he was speaking in Hebrew, another voice broke in.  An audible voice said three times in Hebrew, “Take and eat. This is my body broken for you.”

The pastor knew he was in the presence of God and was hearing the actual voice of Jesus speaking. He could only stand there in silent shock. The staff sitting close thought something had happened to the pastor standing there voiceless like he was in shell shock. What was going on?

In those moments, the pastor was in a trance and having a heavenly vision of the Passover with Jesus and his disciples seated around a table. He could see and hear them. Here was Jesus of Nazareth just as he had been during his earthly ministry. The pastor could hear his voice with the same passionate authority and strength that it must have always carried when Jesus taught and preached..

When the pastor spoke of a “shared experience” service his perspective had obviously changed. He was speaking out of his most personal encounter. The story of Easter was not a memory from the past or an account in the pages of scripture. The resurrection was a story he had physically touched.

And the meaning? Certainly, there’s no magic in Hebrew words, but something about Holy Communion can reach across 2,000 years and connect with a heavenly reality. Each of us can have our own encounters even though they are personal and different. Even with these diverse paths, we are challenged to reach out so we can say with conviction, “I too have seen the Lord.”
The promise makes Easter possible every month of the year.

You might find my collection of Holy Land experiences to be helpful.
BIBLE LANDS: An illustrated Guide to Scriptural Places
Barbpir books Publishers

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JOSEPH BIAS: Part 3

Blog 149
February 10 , 2020

bible

MIRACLES NEVER CEASE!

Robert Wise explores the world of divine interventions from an objective point of view. Can 21st century people believe the hand of God still touches people today?

Read and you’ll find new insights.

JOSEPH BIAS: Part 3

In two previous blogs, I’ve told you something of the story and experience of Joseph Bias and the miraculous healing of his vocal chords after they were accidentally clipped in a medical operation. Joseph went on to discover another spiritual intervention at the home of the well-known musician Allen Moore.

Let me remind you of Joseph’s past. In addition, to being trained at the Rochester School of Music for operatic singing, Joseph performed across America. At the funeral of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., he sang a solo. In addition to his solo albums, he worked with singers from Sandi Patti to Johnny Cash. Joseph hosted a gospel music television show, “I Choose Life.”

Following the extraordinary healing of his vocal cords and the spiritual discovery at Allen Moore’s house, Joseph knew there was more that he needed to grasp. He sensed there was one fundamental principal there that he had yet found. He needed that principle to get his life in proper order. During this time, he was struggling to get the opportunities he needed to perform. Even with his history and contacts, the doors were opening slowly. Something was missing.

Joseph had begun to attend regularly a Bible study group and had begun to search the Bible for answers. During this time, he came across a verse that leaped off the page. From Malachi 3:10-11, he read, “Bring the full tithes into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house; and thereby put me to the test. Says the Lord of Hosts. If I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you an overflowing blessing.” From somewhere, he thought he remembered Jesus saying, “Give and it shall be given unto you.”

The challenge struck Joseph as especially for him. This passage had the direction that he needed for his life. He had to become a giver. No matter what the challenge or the limits, Joseph was determined to observe this principle. The practice changed everything.

Closed doors opened. Opportunities appeared. Paul Crouch of TBN called and offered Joseph a TV show. He was well on his way. Eventually, Joseph Bias became the Music Minister of the First Methodist Church of Tulsa, Oklahoma.

He gave and it was given unto him.

Over the years, I’ve talked with a great many people who have been challenged to take a leap of faith that changed their entire life. However, giving money has usually been the most difficult step to be taken. Divine interventions are easy ideas to talk about, but following the commandments of God is an action, not an idea.

If you’re hoping for the Holy Spirit to touch your life, you might start with what Joseph learned. “Give and it shall be given unto you.”

Does it work? You bet.

You might find my collection of Holy Land experiences to be helpful.
BIBLE LANDS: An illustrated Guide to Scriptural Places
Barbpir books Publishers

THE HOLY SPIRIT IN IRAN?

Blog 148
February 3 , 2020

Master+Film+Poster+Alt+Layout

MIRACLES NEVER CEASE!

Robert Wise explores the world of divine interventions from an objective point of view. Can 21st century people believe the hand of God still touches people today?

Read and you’ll find new insights.

THE HOLY SPIRIT IN IRAN?

Some years ago, I was in Damascus, Syria eating breakfast in a hotel when a couple from Iran came over and abruptly sat down across from me. In whispered tones, they told me that they wanted to escape from Iran and wanted to know if I could help them. I ask why they were wanting to flee. The couple said the leadership of our country is crazy. Interesting?

Recently, I found a report that gives insight on both political and religious happenings in a country where Islam is enforced at the point of a gun. The Western World is keenly aware of the fanaticism inside this country that is the largest supporter of terrorism in the world. Look at what I discovered.

A two-hour documentary called Sheep Among Wolves, seemed to support their conclusion and reported, “The fastest-growing church in the world has taken root in one of the most unexpected and radicalized nations on earth. A revival is taking place inside Iran. The report said, “The Iranian awakening is a rapidly reproducing discipleship movement that owns no property or buildings, has no central leadership, and is predominantly led by women.” The documentary was produced by Frontier Alliance International (FAI), which supports disciple-making teams targeting the “unreached” and “unengaged.” There is a mass exodus leaving Islam for Christianity within Iran, according to FAI.

“What if I told you Islam is dead?” one unidentified Iranian church leader says on the film. “What if I told you the mosques are empty inside Iran? What if I told you no one follows Islam inside of Iran? Would you believe me? This is exactly what is happening inside of Iran. God is moving powerfully inside of Iran.” Many of the ruling class still follow Islam, “because that’s where the high paying jobs are,” according to the film, but the majority of the ordinary people love God and recognize that Islam is the problem.

“What if I told you the best evangelist for Jesus was the Ayatollah Khomeini?” an Iranian church leader asks. He maintains the ayatollahs brought the true face of Islam to light and people discovered it was a lie, a deception. “After 40 years under Islamic law — a utopia according to them — they’ve had the worst devastation in the 5,000 year history of Iran.”

Efforts by the ayatollahs to destroy Christianity have backfired, but have served to refine and purify the church. “What persecution did was destroy the church that were not disciples, and destroy the church that were about converts,” the Iranian church leader noted. “All these church planters found out that converts run away from persecution, but disciples would die for the Lord in persecution. “So our model inside Iran is that we don’t convert to disciple, we disciple so we can convert.” Often a disciple making movement (DMM) begins the first moment someone comes into contact with an unbeliever. “Everything is foundational on prayer. We find people of peace through prayer. We even find locations through prayer,” the Iranian church leader noted.

“When we do DMM, Jesus has gone faster than us. He has come in their dreams or he’s come miraculously in their lives. When we hear this, we know that Jesus has gone ahead of us.” Surprisingly, their emphasis is not planting churches; it is making disciples. “He is letting unbelievers lead other unbelievers to himself and the kingdom of God. If you plant churches you might make disciples. But if you make disciples, you will plant churches,” the Iranian church leader said.

“One thing powerful with DMM is that it is obedience-based discipleship. It is based on the authority of Scripture and every time you read the Scripture you must obey it. This is how people become conformed to the image of Christ and sanctified. They are not just reading the Bible for information. They are reading the Bible to get transformed.”

About 55% of the disciple makers are women, according to one Iranian leader. Such a report certainly gives you something to pray about!

You might find my collection of Holy Land experiences to be helpful.
BIBLE LANDS: An illustrated Guide to Scriptural Places
Barbpir books Publishers