Historical Events I Recently Attended in Jerusalem and the Vatican

On May 29th, Silas Esteves, João Pereira and I traveled to Rome to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal—the 50th anniversary of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit within the Catholic Church. Over a number of days in the city, we attended meetings in the Vatican, met new brothers and sisters in Christ, and had the chance to tour important Christian sites in Rome. This Golden Jubilee celebration was a time to look back and worship God in thankfulness for pouring out His Spirit into the Catholic Church. It was an opportunity to also look forward to the further renewal of the Church and to see what the next 50 years of God moving within the charismatic Catholic communities might bring. Our participation in this event brought the faith and love of everyone in The Living Word Fellowship. I believe we made great strides during this trip with many new connections in the worldwide Body of Christ.

Gary Hargrave and Father Bruno Lins

Gary Hargrave and Father Bruno Lins

President Reuven RivlinWhile Silas and Joao stayed in Rome, I traveled to Jerusalem for another celebration: the first inaugural Jerusalem Prayer Breakfast, held to honor the 50th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem. I was invited to be a founding member of this event, which will be held annually from this time forward. The breakfast hosted more than five hundred spiritual leaders as well as government officials from almost sixty nations—including pastors, rabbis, ambassadors, members of parliament, and Israel’s president Reuben Rivlin. While there, I had a chance to meet a number of these distinguished guests.

Simultaneous to this, while in Rome, Silas and João had a chance to represent myself and The Living Word Fellowship in a moment of greeting and blessing with our dear Pope Francis. For several years now we have been building a relationship with our Catholic family. Dom Orani Tempesta, Cardinal of Rio de Janeiro, was instrumental in arranging this meeting, as well as Father Bruno Lins, from the Vatican Secretary of State, and Father Andre Rodrigues from Rio de Janeiro. Silas and João were introduced to Pope Francis as pastors of The Living Word Fellowship, a church which prays for the Pope and is committed to help others join into an open-heart relationship between Catholics, Evangelicals, and Jews. Pope Francis replied with a big hug and a brotherly kiss and said, “Tell them all I need prayer, much prayer.” While I could not attend this momentous occasion, I felt very included in it.

More photos of Pope Francis and Silas coming soon.

The 50th anniversary events for both the Catholic Church and Jerusalem were historical milestones and significant markers of God’s moving. I know that much fruit will come out of these events and all that has transpired for us in the last few weeks. I join my heart with you today in a drive to see a new level of oneness in the Body of Christ. Let’s believe for Christianity to find its place of love and authority in our generation as we are led by the Holy Spirit of God. I want to personally thank every single person who participated with us in these last few weeks, including so many who are faithful to continually seek the Lord in prayer for me.

Reject Religion, Live In The First Commandment

This morning I brought a message titled “Reject Religion, Live In The First Commandment” at Church of the Living Word in North Hills, California.

This is my first service since returning from a five-week trip to Israel and Vatican City with other members of The Living Word Fellowship. On our trip, the Lord opened doors, and we were able to create heart-felt and important relationships with leaders of both the Jewish and Catholic communities.

The foremost commandment is to love the Lord your God with all your heart and strength (Mark 12:28-31; Deuteronomy 6:4-5). Everything else flows out of that relationship. God accepted Abel’s offering but not Cain’s (Genesis 4:1-6). It wasn’t because Cain offered the wrong sacrifice, but there was something wrong in Cain’s heart. He wasn’t loving the Lord. Religion uses outward works of service to God as a cover-up for a lack of relationship with Him. Religion is divisive and is diametrically opposed to God.

Love the Lord with all your strength and all your might. This has been our hallmark and it must become ours even more so. Reject religion and live in a first-commandment relationship with God.

Visit To Saint Peter’s Basilica In Vatican City

Thanks to our connection with Dom Orani, today Silas Esteves, João Pereira, and I had the tremendous honor of visiting Vatican City. Here we toured St. Peter’s Basilica and spent some time with Father Bruno Lins, a Secretary of State of the Vatican. Below are pictures of the four of us outside the Basilica, a picture of me at Papa Francisco’s window, and a video greeting taken at the Basilica.

 

A Time Of Fellowship With Catholic Charismatic Leaders Of The Americas

Last night at a restaurant in Rome, Italy, I attended a dinner meeting with the Catholic Charismatic leaders from North, South, and Central America. We had an amazing time of worship in the Spirit and deep connections, led by incredibly anointed leaders from Mexico.

United in faith, we prayed to the Lord for a greater outpouring of the Holy Spirit and God’s love, believing that whatever two or more ask for in His name, we have received.

Here is a short video from the evening.

Passover — A Nature Change At Gilgal

Tonight I brought a message titled “Passover — A Nature Change At Gilgal” in North Hills, California.

This Word came as an intimate and heartfelt plea that each one of us experiences a personal meeting with the Lord during this Passover. The Passover celebrated by Joshua at Gilgal paints a picture of where we are now positioned at the threshold of God’s Kingdom. At Gilgal, the generation that survived the wilderness with Joshua was circumcised into a covenant with God. Everything of their former life was changing for them, and the captain of the Lord’s host was ready to lead.

God is wooing us into His Kingdom. We must not be conformed to this world; we must be transformed. Prophesy that every reluctance to His Lordship be removed from your heart, mind, soul-flesh, and spirit. In this Passover, let your heart return to Gilgal, and renew your personal covenant with the Lord. This Passover is for your deliverance so that you can deepen your personal relationship with Him and be prepared to live with Him in His Kingdom.

Two Churches, One Heart – Together, Bringing God’s Kingdom

This morning I brought a message titled “Two Churches, One Heart – Together, Bringing God’s Kingdom” at Church of the Living Word in North Hills, California.

I joined with Iglesia de Dios and Church of the Living Word as they celebrated the one-year anniversary of their relationship as two unique families of God, united by one purpose. Congregants from Brazil, Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala participated via phone. Together, we worshiped our Lord with joy and thankfulness, as we sang songs in both Spanish and English.

The Word began with Pastor Omar Pinto drawing us into a week of reflection upon the significance of Christ’s cross and resurrection. Christ does not live in a tomb; He is our risen Lord! His purpose is to be close to us, and to bring His Kingdom on earth.

I continued the Word by imparting a prophetic vision that the Lord has for these two churches. God has given Iglesia de Dios and Church of the Living Word an opportunity to love one another and become one in Christ. These two churches are like the “two by two” that Christ sent into every city and place where He Himself was going to come (Luke 10:1). In our oneness and authority, we will bind the spirits that blind people from seeing the gospel of the Kingdom. God is sending us two by two because each church has the language and the heart that can reach the community around us.

This vision starts today in our neighborhood; yet for these two churches, the Lord has a much bigger vision. As we continue to be given to oneness in Christ, the gospel of the Kingdom will spread from our neighborhood to Central America and South America; and those nations will then have the faith and authority to release North America into God’s Kingdom.

Passover Judges The gods You Serve

Tonight I celebrated Shabbat HaGadol and brought a message titled “Passover Judges The gods You Serve” in North Hills, California.

As we approach the Feast of Passover, I am driven to see the School of Prophets fulfill its purpose of bringing the Kingdom of God to earth. Passover in the Bible was all about God delivering His people to live in His Kingdom. Preceding the deliverance of the Israelites, however, judgment had to take place on all the gods of Egypt. Whether the Israelites liked it or not, because they were subject to Pharaoh, they were also subject to a pantheon of gods whom Pharaoh served. God’s judgment on these gods can be seen in each of the plagues, which were not merely judgments on natural things; rather, they were judgments on the deities behind the natural things that the Egyptians worshiped.

God is still looking to deliver His people into His Kingdom. However, today we are just as subject to other spiritual deities as the children of Israel were. The only way we can live in the Kingdom is by making Christ our Lord; we cannot serve two masters. Once we are free from other gods and we are living in the Kingdom, we can, as a school of prophets, deliver all of humanity into the Kingdom. This Passover, we confess our subjection to other gods, and we ask God to finish what He started in the first Passover. Our cry is, Father, deliver us from all the other gods we serve and into Your Kingdom.

God’s One Purpose

This morning I brought a message titled “God’s One Purpose” at Church of the Living Word in North Hills, California.

In the beginning God set up His Kingdom in the garden; Adam and Eve walked in a relationship with God as their King. God’s intent and His one purpose is to reestablish His relationship to man and His Kingdom on earth. From Exodus to Revelation, God keeps speaking about a people who are a kingdom and priests to our God (Exodus 19:5-6; Revelation 5:9-10).

Colossians 1:13-14 tell us that God rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son. Jesus forgave our sin, and opened the door for us to relate to Him as Lord. Jesus is ruling, and we should be at His right hand bringing every enemy into subjection to His feet. As the school of prophets, we must weld our hearts together with God’s purpose and take dominion over all authority and power that is not in subjection to His Kingdom.

The Saints Possess The Kingdom

This morning I brought a message titled, “The Saints Possess The Kingdom” at Monte Sião, Niterói, Brazil.

Our focus is to be on the establishment of the Kingdom of God. The greatest purpose of salvation was to release us out of our bondage to satan’s kingdom and transfer us to the Kingdom of God. For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son (Colossians 1:13-14). Our salvation is just the first step in the Kingdom of God coming to earth.

Daniel chapter 7 shows the picture of the Kingdom of God—when it is given to Christ as an everlasting dominion which will not pass away, and a kingdom which will not be destroyed. Daniel also shows us that Christ possesses His Kingdom with His saints: the saints took possession of the kingdom (Daniel 7: 22).

Every enemy is in the process of being put into subjection to God and we are supposed to be there with Christ participating in this battle to see the release of His Kingdom. We are to be the ones that bind the strongman and plunder his house. We are to be those who execute, by His Word and Name, the judgments over His enemies. Therefore, we need to be born again in the Spirit in order to engage in what Christ is doing now. We must be involved in this process of bringing His Kingdom.

Our focus must be that we do not lose our position of being under the Lordship of Christ, but we keep ourselves positioned at His right hand, persisting in a life in the Spirit. We commit ourselves to engage with the Lamb to see Him receive the reward of His sufferings and to receive His Kingdom free of all His enemies and every resistance. We keep our focus where Christ is, seated at the right hand of the Father, directly involved with the establishment of the Kingdom of God in the heavens and on earth.