On Friday evening we had another big turn out! The team for the night: Carl, Wesley, Oliver, Paul (a friend of Oliver's), Michael, James Crooke, Jannah, Susi, Steve, Ben, Adam, Katie, Lizzie (a friend from my church), Ashley (a friend of Nigel, who is a good friend of mine) and me. After meeting at Café Nero for a time of prayer and devotions we headed up to the square.
Carl stood up to preach first and preached faithfully, drawing people into discussing as they walked passed. Carl is really growing as an open-air preacher, and while his style is a little different to mine, he preaches faithfully the Word of God without shying away from the truth. After a while Carl tagged me in and so I stood up to preach the Word of God. After a short while a man began to heckle me concerning the existence of God. He maintained that he could never believe in something he had not seen. I told him that we cannot see the wind yet we know it exists. This of course is because we can feel the wind tangibly. I agree that we rarely feel the Lord in the same way, however we can see the effects of the Lord, just like we can see the effects of the wind. There are many things we believe in that we cannot see. It is not always necessary to have to see something or someone in order to know that that someone or something exists. I could, for example, see a painting without ever having seen the painter. Simple deductive logic will lead me to recognise the intelligent design of the painting, thus helping me to conclude that there must be a designer. I went on to explain to the crowd that the God who made this world commands that all men everywhere repent and believe the Gospel. It is not just God's wish that all be saved, God commands that all turn from their sin in order to be saved.
After I finished preaching we all engaged in one-to-one conversations. I got talking with two Muslim men who both took a copy of The Jesus Film that we put out on the table. During our conversation it became apparent to me that both men were "pre-armed" with objections towards Christianity. The objection that the Bible is corrupt and has been changed multiple times of course came up. I explained that the Bible has not been changed, we simply have many translations of the Bible into the languages of today, from the Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek manuscripts that we have. They also questioned the divinity of Christ and so I took them to the Scriptures so that they could see that Jesus is clearly shown to be both fully man and fully God. As they left they both took an in-depth gospel tract, for which I was very pleased to see.
Many conversations were had by the team and it was so encouraging to see the gospel being proclaimed. Below is a little report that Michael has written showing his involvement during the evening.
My first encounter was with a guy called Naz, he was a really good natured person.
I took him through the 'good' test, he turned out to be guilty on all accounts but said that he would go to heaven; he believed that God would just forgive him because he had done good things. That led me to take him into a court of law. Throughout our encounter I had to keep taking him back to our own court of law because he was intent on justifying himself. He then wanted to know what the bible says about Hell; which I explained.
He then tried to turn it around by asking me if I had done those things, I told him that I was guilty of breaking all of those commandments and that was why we all need the Savoir.
He then wanted to know why there are so many other religions and how did we know we had the correct one. I explained that prophecy 100% proves the Bible is the word of God. I asked him if he could name who the president of America would be in 700 years time, where he would be born and how he would die. Obviously he couldn't.
I ended by telling him that when he lays his head on his pillow tonight that his conscience, that inner voice that he has no control over would probably start speaking to him. I asked him to think about the things we spoke about. He said he would.
I had two other encounters with Lucy and Angela. Again I gave them a million pound track and asked her the million pound question. She agreed to take the 'good' test. They were both guilty of breaking 4 out of the 10 commandments that I asked them. I went through our own court system with them and ended up sharing the Gospel with them.
The most interesting encounter happened on the way home. This encounter may have had the Lord's hand in it.
James Crooke told me that he was leaving because he had to be up early in the morning. I was in two minds about leaving with him as I wanted to stay and try to witness to some more people, but I looked at the time and felt lead to leave with him as we both go the same way home.
We got to the station looked up at the board and saw that we had 6 minutes for James to get a ticket. The nearest machine had two people in front of him. Time was ticking so James ran around the corner. With sixty seconds to go James came running around the corner. We got on near the back of the train with about thirty seconds to go.
We both sat down, me next to a guy with some earphones on drinking a can of beer and James opposite me next to a lady. I proceeded to pass around some million pound note tracks and to add a bit of light humour, I told all the recipients that they were great when you get the change. I then handed one to the guy sitting next to me drinking the beer. He then looked at the back and said "what's this about" I took him through the good test and as usual he was guilty on all accounts. He said that he had been thinking about these things because his dad was a staunch Catholic and his Gran was a Christian and that she had spoken to him a few times and had been praying for him.
I said to him "speak to your Gran and your father" second thoughts only speak to your Gran and get you father to speak to your Gran. I also said that this could be a divine appointment bearing in mind that we had caught the train with seconds to spare and we could have ended up anywhere else on the train, but we ended up sitting next to him. James said "could we be the answer to his Gran's prayers?"
He asked some questions on Catholicism and other religions which James explained to him. James also gave him his contact details and asked him to contact him if he had any other questions.
All in all it was a great night of evangelism.
Soli Deo Gloria!!