Events of late have limited our time spent on the street, however this past Saturday we were back at Tooting Broadway to preach the gospel. Philip and I were joined by Antonio, as well as David, a friend from church.
Before I stood up to preach open-air we spent some time handing out tracts and talking with people. I got talking with a young man named whose name I'm afraid escapes me. I reasoned with him of sin, righteousness and judgment, however he did seem quite indifferent. I must admit it was frustrating. Not everyone I speak to is like this, however having spoken to a vast amount of people these last few years it is clear that although some are completely dismissive, there are those who are willing to listen. This was the case with a young woman I spoke to called Ann.
She was willing to listen and so because of this I was able to share the whole counsel of God with her. She admitted to believing in God, which is an important component for all witnessing encounters. When I stressed to her the importance of knowing where you are going to go when you die I could see that she appreciated the seriousness of this truth.
One of things I always stress when I share the gospel is to do my best to help the person understand their need for a Saviour. It doesn't matter if you are a Buddhist, a Muslim, an atheist, an agnostic, a Hindu, a Mormon, a Jehovah's Witness, a Jew or a Rastafarian; everyone needs a Saviour because everyone has committed the most heinous of crimes. They have denied the One who has made them. They have denied the God who has given them life. They have shunned Him. They have mocked Him. They have abused Him. Why is hell reasonable? Because the punishment fits the crime. But there is good news!! No one has to go to hell. No one. God has sent His Son to suffer and die in the place of sinners so that they can be saved. What they must do is repent (turn from their sin) and trust in what Jesus has done. They must put their hope and trust in Him and in doing so they will be saved. Many people today spend a great deal of energy trying to argue away the existence of hell. They spend a great deal of time trying to prove that a loving God would never send anyone to hell. But God is also just and that is why He must condemn sinners to hell. But again, no one has to go there. Instead of trying to argue away the existence of hell the sinner should simply repent and turn to Jesus, because if they do they will be saved. Anne understood this and she left with knowing the truth as well as a gospel tract to remind her should she forget. Praise God.
Standing up to preach my message was much the same of what I had shared with Anne. Some people stopped to listen and so afterwards Philip and Antonio were able to speak with some of them. Our continued presence at Tooting Broadway is very important I believe. I had to chuckle a few weeks back. My brother went to visit a friend he hasn't seen in quite a while who is over from South Africa and is now living in England. As it so happens I have never had the chance to meet her. She and her family live in Tooting just above the Tube Station. Anyway, during the time my brother spent visiting her he showed her some photos that were on his digital camera. One of them was of me preaching outside Tooting Broadway. As soon as she saw it she said, "Hey, that looks like the guy I see preaching each Saturday when I look outside our window." Breaking into a big grin my brother exclaimed, "Yeah I know, that's my brother!" She happens to be Muslim and my brother has spent much time talking to her about Jesus and the gospel. I think it's quite amazing that she should now be living in a place where she can possibly hear preaching each Saturday.
It was a good night and many got to hear the good new. Please continue to pray that the Lord would continue to use us in Tooting for His glory.
Soli Deo Gloria!