Conditions of the Heart
I know that I am supposed to write on prophecy, but I just can’t! It’s not because I lack for the fulfillment of prophecies to report on. With all of the conflicts occurring in the Middle East, Pope Francis’ recent moves toward a one-world religion, illegals pouring into the United States by the thousands, the further implementation of a National ID system here in the U.S., global warming—oops…I mean climate change, the fight for the Temple Mount and the right to build the Third Temple (the list goes on and on), that would be easy. However, although each of these is an extremely serious issue, on which we have always written, and will continue to write about, this editorial will be a little different.
Since the first issue of Endtime magazine in April 1991, Irvin Baxter has written every editorial. So, why is my name under the title this time?
Many of you know that my father-in-law, Irvin Baxter, has poured his whole heart into Endtime Ministries for the last 28 years. Little did we know how literal this statement was – until the past few weeks.
We moved into our current building in November 2007. From the very beginning, Irvin felt it was the Lord’s will that we purchase the entire facility, which would then be used as a global outreach center until the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Since the funds were not available at the time, the decision was made to hold off until God provided the need. However, a few months ago the landlord informed us that he had an offer on the table to buy the building. As a result, we decided that it was time to try and make the purchase for the ministry.
Since the institution that Irvin had been banking with for over 40 years made getting a commercial loan to a non-profit ministry virtually impossible, we had to secure financing through another bank. One of the stipulations for funding was that Irvin purchase a life insurance policy, since he was the face of the ministry. At the time, we saw the need for this document, and the tests, as an annoyance. Now we view it as a miracle from God! Without this requirement, Irvin would have never been tested and the situation could have resulted in something much worse.
In order to acquire the insurance, Irvin had to navigate a series of stress tests. These tests came back inconclusive, so the doctor ordered a heart cath.
The heart catheterization procedure was scheduled for July 18, with doctors believing that only a couple of stents might be necessary. However, the tests showed that he had blockages in several arteries and that he would need open heart surgery right away.
At first, Irvin made the decision to go ahead with the surgery. But after praying through the night, he decided to go on a twenty-one day fast, believing that God would heal him. He also knew that he had several prophecy conferences scheduled and didn’t want to disappoint the attendees. With that in mind, he checked himself out of the hospital to go home and rest.
The next morning, he rose early to get ready for Sunday service, but wasn’t feeling well. He began to sweat profusely, but was cold. His wife called 911 and he was rushed to Methodist Hospital in Richardson, where we learned he was having a heart attack. The doctor immediately stabilized him and inserted a stent to help with the blocked artery.
His open heart surgery was scheduled for Tuesday, July 22 at 1:30pm. With the Lord’s help, and with one of the best heart surgeons in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, Irvin came through the seven and one-half hour, six-bypass surgery as well as could be expected. The doctors were also able to fix an atrial fibrillation issue that had plagued Irvin for years.
Of course, during his stay in the hospital, he taught every nurse, physical therapist, dietician, doctor and janitor that crossed his path about the prophecies of the Bible, while handing out Endtime magazines to every person that walked through the door to his room.
Thankfully, along with chomping at the bit to get back on the radio, Irvin is now in rehab and doing well.
Just after the surgery, I was standing by his bed and he was telling me about all that we needed to do for God in the near future. Almost immediately, he wanted to know what was going on in Israel and around the world!
At one point, Irvin glared at me and said, “Dave, keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.” We both knew he was quoting Proverbs 4:23. I guess open heart surgery had branded this scripture on the forefront of his mind. After that, we discussed the physical and spiritual ramifications of clogged arteries. Irvin was making sure that I knew not to let anything clog the arteries of my spiritual heart, as well as my physical heart. “Don’t let bitterness clog your arteries, Dave. It will kill you spiritually!” I knew what he meant and took it to heart, thankful that he was looking after me as he always has.
As I sat there listening to him talk, I couldn’t help remembering all of the prophecy conferences he had taught, radio and television programs he had produced, books and magazine articles he had written, along with all of the times I have heard him pray and minister in a pulpit. All the while, I was also looking forward to the messages he would preach, and the lessons he would teach, in the near future. This is a true man of God who has given his whole heart to the work of the Lord. Literally!
Anxiously awaiting the soon return of my father-in-law, pastor, mentor, spiritual father, boss and best friend on earth…Irvin Baxter.
By Dave Robbins