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

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

Blog 138
October 28, 2019

faith

MIRACLES NEVER CEASE!

Often, I hear from people who have experienced miracles or divine interventions. I look forward to receiving these accounts as they deepen our understanding of how these experiences occur. Could you be like that? If so, please share your story with me. Drop me a note at revwise@att.net.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

For weeks, you’ve been reading of the extraordinary divine interventions and miracles that I’ve collected from all over the country. Let’s pause for a moment and reflect on what these accounts actually mean.

The Bible tells us that a miracle is the power of God’s Kingdom breaking into this world. The meaning of miracles is they demonstrate the power of God. One of the important connections that ties the Old and New Testaments together was the common quest for the Kingdom of God. In the New Testament, the Gospel of Mark describes the ministry of Jesus beginning with the proclamation, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent, and believe in the gospel.” (Mark 1:15) The Kingdom is the powerful rule of God breaking into history and offering new relationships with humanity. The miracles of Jesus, the Apostles, and the church that followed demonstrated the power of the heavenly Father’s reign and rule called the coming of the Kingdom.

The miracles in the Gospels displayed power that was tied to a personal God, a God who cared. When miracles break into everyday life, they accomplish the will of God. The Lord God is a God of history, displaying His power in history, and working through history. Human experience is a vehicle for the demonstration of His power. Scripture suggests that this purpose never ended.

When the day of Pentecost arrived 40 days after the resurrection, the promise of Jesus that a comforter would empower the church was accomplished. The Holy Spirit fell on the apostles equipping them to proclaim the Kingdom of God with power. Once again miracles were a sign of divine empowerment.

When we attempt to understand why and how miracles occur today, the scripture tells us to remember how these signs are expressions of the power of God working to bring in His Kingdom, the rule of God in the lives of people.

The issue in positioning oneself to receiving a miracle is trust. Scripture tells us that believing in and trusting the promises of God are the keys to reception. However, “faith” doesn’t mean simply believing the right things like holding a certain kind of opinion or professing a particular creed. Faith is responding to God’s decrees and opening one’s heart to Him and His purposes. Faith is joining the Kingdom of God.

Want to sign up? It will be the best deal of your lifetime!

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

MIRACLE IN LIBERIA

Blog 134
September 23, 2019

LIBERIA

MIRACLES NEVER CEASE!

Often, I hear from people who have experienced miracles or divine interventions. I look forward to receiving these accounts as they deepen our understanding of how these experiences occur. Could you be like that? If so, please share your story with me. Drop me a note at revwise@att.net.

MIRACLE IN LIBERIA

If you have a broad interest in divine interventions and follow the stories you will eventually notice that miracles seem to happen more frequently in Third World countries. The church is thriving there where it is on the wane in the United States. Migrants from South America and Mexico are generally far more devout than Americans.

What is going on?

While some secularized Americans are closed to the miraculous, believers in these poorer, struggling countries embrace the possibility. They are open and will reach out to receive the promise of a divine touch. The results speak for themselves and remain a lesson for the Northern hemisphere.

Recently, I witnessed this result in the ministry of a friend of mine. LaDonna Osborn is the daughter of T.L. and Daisy Osborn who began Osborn Ministries over 70 years ago. While the ministry of T.L. Osborn was not well known in America, his crusades brought in thousands of people in countries all across the globe. A humble man, T.L. Osborn had a simplicity with divine empowerment. Daisy worked in the same field with the same results. With their passing, the torch has been passed on to LaDonna.

An exceedingly bright woman, LaDonna has the same power and conviction. Overflowing crowds attend her services in Africa. Recently, she was in Ganta (Gompa City) Liberia conducting a mission. A young woman, who LaDonna knew nothing about, came forward to express her faith and be prayed for. As was later explained, after nine months of pregnancy the baby had stopped moving. She was now in the twelfth month. In the local clinic, the doctor told her the baby had died and surgery was necessary to remove the dead fetus. He was strongly insistent. However, the woman had no money and couldn’t afford the surgery. On the first day of LaDonna’s Festival of Faith and Miracles, the pregnant woman accepted Jesus as her Lord and during the prayer for the sick the mother laid her hand on her belly during the prayer for the sick.

On the last day of the Festival, the young woman came forward to testify that she was no longer afraid. LaDonna could see great faith and conviction in the woman’s eyes. The Holy Spirit moved LaDonna to say, “You will deliver a healthy baby.” Because she absolutely trusted the promises of God, LaDonna was confident God was at work.

Two days later, she received a beautiful photograph from one of the Gomp City pastors. The pregnant woman had delivered a healthy baby girl. A miracle had occurred.

Another example of what openness to the Holy Spirit can bring to pass in the midst of poverty. Also an example to all of us to remember that trust can open closed doors.

Oh, by the way. She named the baby LaDonna.

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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THE POWER OF THE SACRAMENTS

Blog 120
June 10, 2019

angelic architecture art baptism

DO YOU HAVE AN EXPERIENCE TO SHARE? Robert Wise would be delighted to learn about your divine intervention. If you have a story to share, please contact him at revwise@att.net.  He’s looking forward to hearing from you.

THE POWER OF THE SACRAMENTS

You would find Nina Paul to be a fascinating person. She is a priest with the Open Catholic Church which is highly sacramental, but has no connection with the Roman Catholic Church. Nina Paul is part of the Independent Sacramental Movement and responsible for the St. Theresa Open Seminary. For some time, she has also worked as a hospice chaplain.

A hospice in Oxnard, California called Chaplain Paul to come and minister to a dying man. Pee Wee was in the last hours of his life. He could barely talk and wasn’t expected to live for more than a short time. Pee Wee had been turned out at nine years of age and grew up on the streets as a homeless person. All contact with his original family was lost and disappeared 40 years earlier. As best anyone could tell, Pee Wee had no religious training or any sort of a spiritual background or interest.

When Chaplain Paul arrived, she discovered that it was very difficult to understand the man as he could barely speak. She asked Pee Wee what she could do for him.

“I want to be baptized,” he barely uttered.

The Chaplain wasn’t sure she heard right and ask him three times to make sure she had correctly understood his desire. Each time he mumbled “yes” and nodded his head. As any good priest would do, Nina Paul began the baptismal ceremony using the liturgy of the church and the proper sacramental preparations. After she finished that ceremony, she led Pee Wee in the prayers of Confirmation which ended with, “Strengthen, O Lord, your servant Pee Wee with your Holy Spirit; empower him for your service and sustain him all the days of his life. Amen.”
Pee Wee fell back on the pillow and Nina left. Two hours later, she was at home when the nurse called.

“What in the hell did you do to Pee Wee?” she barked. “Get down here at once!”
Nina couldn’t figure out what she had done wrong, but was terrified. What had occurred?

When she got to the hospice center, she found Pee Wee sitting outside in a wheelchair, smoking a cigarette, and talking to one of the patients.
“Two hours ago, he was nearly dead and now he’s completely restored!” the nurse said breathlessly. “Look out there! What did you do?”

Nina Paul hadn’t expected such a dramatic result, but the only explanation was that the Sacrament of Baptism and Confirmation had brought new life to Pee Wee. Nina was overwhelmed.

During the next two-weeks, Pee Wee was able to restore his broken relationship with his family. He found his mother and a sister he had lost. The long-forgotten family gathered around him and he died peacefully.

Pee Wee had gone from his deathbed to a wheel chair almost instantly. Where did the miracle come from? Nina Paul says, “It was the power of the sacraments that produced the healing.”

HOW DO MIRACLES OCCUR?

Blog 119
June 1, 2019

backlit clouds dawn dusk

DO YOU HAVE AN EXPERIENCE TO SHARE? Robert Wise would be delighted to learn about your divine intervention. If you have a story to share, please contact him at revwise@att.net. He’s looking forward to hearing from you.

HOW DO MIRACLES OCCUR?

You met Quinton Moore in the last blog. I shared an incident in his ministry, but I didn’t go into details about his personal history. I think you will find more insight into his life and ministry instructive. Let me tell you a little more about his personal story.

Quinton Moore grew up in Pentecostal land but had a higher regard for education than many in his church After Quinton completed an excellent education, he felt called into the ministry and began exploring various aspects of ministry. A church in Liberal, Kansas called him to come up and speak. Taking his new wife Annie with him, he drove to a small congregation in Liberal, Kansas, to try his hand at preaching. Around 35 people showed up to hear this young man.

The typical plain church building had a pulpit in the center of the sanctuary and a Communion Table underneath with a thanksgiving basket sitting in the middle of the table. Bananas, apples, oranges had been piled together to represent the harvest season. People sauntered in and sat down to listen to this young fellow.

One man was particularly noticeable. Slumped down in the middle of the pew, the man stared at Quinton with a defiant look on his face. While no words were spoken, he seemed to be daring the preacher to say something of value. Quinton could feel the challenge written across the man’s face.

The service began. After a few hymns, Quinton launched into his sermon but a strange thought blipped through his mind. “Take a banana and put it on that obstinate man’s head.” While Quinton knew what it was to have the Holy Spirit speak in his thoughts, this idea sounded beyond the preposterous. He kept preaching but the idea wouldn’t go away. Finally, he jumped down from the pulpit grabbed a banana out of the basket on the Communion Table. Starting up the aisle, he pointed the fruit at the man’s head.

The defiant look vanished from the guy’s face and the fellow virtually fell out of the pew. He began crawling up the aisle crying. The man grabbed the kneeling rail and sobbed bitterly. Most of the people in the congregation were family or knew him. They gathered around, praying for his wholeness.

After the service was over, Quinton approached the man to inquire what had happened. “Look,” the man said. “I cynically told the Lord if this preacher hears from you, let him put a banana on my head.” Still sobbing, the man said “you did!”

Does the Holy Spirit often speak through out thoughts? Quinton certainly believes so!

MEET AGNES Part 6

BLOG 58 October 16, 2015 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.

WORD-Art_Heb-13_8

Going against the grain of what she had been taught growing up in a missionary compound, Agnes Sanford’s experiments with prayer opened doors that had been closed in Protestant circles for centuries. She attempted expressions of faith that others had declared impossible. Her story teaches the value of persistence.

In the midst of her own struggles with depression, Agnes used illness as an opportunity for growth. Where many retreated into seclusion, Agnes continually tried to pray in different ways. When the intercession didn’t work the first time, she tried a new direction. The result was not only her own healing, but insights that have brought countless numbers to wholeness. Before you write off her stories as examples of what isn’t possible for you, rethink how trial and error brought Agnes to discoveries that have changed how many view prayer today.

Praise is one form of saying thank you for what the Creator has done for us. Worship is affirming that our Creator is here and we recognize His presence in our world. During her adolescent years in China, Agnes learned to experience the Holy Spirit everywhere. She did not worship nature, but blessed the name of the One who created all things.

On one of her walks, she encountered the timelessness of creation. She found herself absorbed into a oneness with all creatures. The indescribable presence of God swept over her. The ever-living creativity of the uncreated Creator filled her life and she worshipped with ecstatic joy. Agnes believed that from our side, contact with the Holy Spirit begins with worship. Seeking the will of God is primary in the quest for divine intervention.

When you are struggling with some need, why not shift gears and while worshipping the Father, ask about what He wants? This new focus might put you on a more productive course.

Agnes found a new way of understanding Hebrews 13:8, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and for ever.” Her insight led to the discovery that the healing touch of Christ is not bound by wristwatches or computers. The past can be touched by grace as surely as a miracle can occur in the present moment.

Agnes would instruct us to set aside all parameters that might bind what God can do. The work of the Holy Spirit is unlimited. We can believe in and work with that insight. Few of us are acquainted with the idea of working in a dimension that is beyond time, but God’s world and Word certainly is.

Allow yourself to step into a new paradigm.