Tonight the team headed into the mall (Queen St) and had the opportunity to evangelise to a range of different members of the New Zealand international soccer team, which was interesting. (View a summary in the video below).
Another conversation was with Matthew and Maxine. Matt said numerous times he had prayed to Satan to do things for him and that because it came true he now worshipped Satan. Matt made quite a number of claims about God and by the end of the conversation was really desperate to defend himself.
Maxine on the other hand was much more humble and honestly admitted without even addressing the law of God that she deserved Hell because of premarital sex and the like.
The conversation started in a place where it was more about simple apologetics rather than the Gospel but that soon changed as they both acknowledged His existence and that the problem was rather that they were determined to live for themselves.
With a simple explanation of the saving work of Jesus on the cross these two flatly rejected the offer. Both individually deciding that they desired to go to Hell. Even after being warned of the desolate, wrath filled place it would be they were adamant on heading there, very clearly stating such.
They ended up leaving as both were getting a little squirmy. It seemed as if the words coming out of their mouths weren't quite what they believed. May they not be able to sleep tonight without trusting in Christ!
Please commit Matt and Maxine to God in prayer, earnestly and sincerely commit each of them to God. May God change their hearts, may their lives be drastically transformed by a total surrender to Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour!
Please commit other conversations to God, that all those who heard the word would consider the importance of faith in Christ.
And we ask that you consider the prayer Christ prayed for us in John 17. The primary reason we are still in this world and not taken straight to Heaven upon salvation is for personal Holiness for the sake of Gospel ministry!
Soli Deo Gloria!
The mall was busy in Brisbane City yesterday for our weekly Wednesday afternoon outreach. George started off with a sketchboard illustrating Jesus' words about there being a narrow road that leads to heaven compared to a broad road that leads to hell, and then presenting a clear message of forgiveness through Jesus.
It was great to see people stop and listen to what was being said. We also had our free Bibles table set up and dozens of gospels of John were taken throughout the day.
One man named David came up to the table wanting a Bible. He said he used to have one before he gave it away to someone. After getting a Bible he was about to walk away when I thought, I should ask him what he thinks will get him to heaven. He said he didn't think he would get there because he is not good enough.
This presented a good opportunity to explain to him the message of grace - that Jesus, who lived perfectly, took our place for us by dying for our sin even though we have been so bad - and how we should respond to it with repentance and faith in Christ alone. After considering the message for a few moments, he said, "I want to trust in Christ from now." He said that he was prepared to turn from his sins.
I asked him a checking question to see if he had really understood the gospel, and he had. Please pray for David that his profession of faith would genuine and that God would then grow him in his faith.
Not long afterwards a man named Daniel was listening to the preaching and I asked him whether he thought he would go to heaven. He said, "Yes, because I am pretty pure." So we talked about sin, how none of us are pure, and then also the gospel.
And as I was explaining the concept of a perfect substitute taking our punishment for us, you could see something clicked in his mind. He said, "Wow, I have had other people try and explain this message to me before, but it's never made sense." He said he wanted to now trust in Christ alone for his forgiveness and turn from his sins. I gave him details for a local church and also gave him a Bible. He said at the end, "If it wasn't for you I would still be lost. Thank you so much."
You never know what impact your words will have or what impact that tract you handed out will have on a person. It's great to know the results are up to God. Our job is simply to be faithful in presenting the message clearly.
To God be the glory!
On Saturday evening the team headed into Queen St Mall (in the heart of Brisbane City) and very quickly things were underway. Without much hesitation many people were in conversations, the preaching was started and the citizens of Brisbane City who had ventured into the mall were being exposed to the truth of human sin and the saving work of Jesus Christ on the cross.
There were a few first timers who had come out and it was a blessing to see them watch along, standing beside another team member before having a go at a conversation themselves. As always the easiest place to talk to someone is either as they walk away from listening to the preacher or as the preacher finishes. It was good to see that small step of courage taken, the simple question, "What did you think of that?"
One highlight conversation from the evening was with a man named, Errol, at first he was unsure whether or not God existed but the conversation quickly pushed past that and basically then revolved around the Gospel.
Discussing sin Errol acknowledged quickly that he was a sinner and that he deserved God's penalty for sin. When asked how he would fix it, as his eyes started to well up, he said, he had no idea and it worried him. We discussed common ideas and theories and addressed why these were unable to save before Errol was offered the good news of Jesus Christ, the one and only way to be saved from sin.
It was a wonderful conversation and to finish it off Errol acknowledged his fault before God and said he would have to consider this and said he might go and read his Bible that evening.
Please pray for Errol, pray that he will surrender to Jesus as Lord and Saviour and be trusting in Christ alone for salvation.
Please pray for the team as normal weeks get underway that 'normal' life will not be one void of Gospel ministry, that work weeks, university classes and the rest of their lives will be filled with the Gospel of Grace and the declaration of the truth.
Soli Deo Gloria!
Wednesday afternoon, we headed into the mall, there was only four of us on the team but God provided many opportunities! We started the afternoon with some preaching and despite a relatively controversial preaching on sin, there was a decent sized crowd of twenty five who listened for the vast majority of the presentation.
What was most surprising was as the sins were listed and discussed, including abortion, not a single person flinched, in fact more people came to stop and listen. (The video starts in the few moments after the sin of abortion was revealed on the board).
There were many conversations had including a discussion with a lady named Rhoia, she was adamant that all religions were true, that there was no real right and wrong and certain that there was no Heaven or Hell. When asked about why, she simply stated because she didn't want to believe in such things. The conversation went from there and went down a few interesting routes but in the end came to a place, after hearing about sin and hearing the way of salvation Rhoia said, it sounded nice but she just didn't want to believe that because it would mean admitting she was wrong.
Please pray for Rhoia who has heard the saving message of Jesus Christ, pray that her heart will be softened and that she will trust in Christ alone as Lord and Saviour!
There was also a lengthy conversation had with two ladies named, Sharon and Collette were Hindu's and believed that they were trusting in the same message as Christianity, yet denying the essential truths of Christ. They were hard of heart and strongly professed that there was no such thing as truth and that morality was subjective meaning they weren't wrong to live how they wanted.
Please consider Sharon and Collette in prayer, they have heard the Gospel, they have tracts and just like us all they need Jesus Christ's salvation!
Thank you for your support and prayers, may you take the opportunity to join us!
Soli Deo Gloria!
On Saturday night the team made their way into the Queen St Mall in the heart of Brisbane city, with a low temperature it seemed as though there may be a lacking number of team members or people to talk with but God graciously provided both, a team of about twenty came out and there were many conversations that were had!
One major highlight was a young Muslim man, Josh, who engaged the preacher from very early on, discussing the deity of Jesus and discussing the way of salvation. The conversation drew a decent crowd and was extremely productive. A topic would be started, some new ground would be covered and Josh would slowly talk until a point where he would acknowledge he understood or say he still disagreed. The conversation lasted over an hour with the preacher and Josh stayed till after the night had officially finished discussing Christianity with a team member!
Over the course of the night he talked with a few different people and heard a range of different ways of explaining Jesus Christ being God. Please keep Josh in prayer, consider him this week as you come before the Holy God of the universe and lift up Josh's salvation. Pray that the truth of God will penetrate his heart and that his life will be forever changed as he comes to trust in Jesus Christ, the God Man who came to save.
Another conversation was had with a young man named Matt. He was apathetic, a discussion was had about things more important that money about where this universe came from, where humans go after their bodies die and a range of similar topics.
But in it all Matt remained adamant that even if there is 100% proof for the Bible, even if he could know without doubt that there is a God, that He revealed Himself in the Bible and that Jesus was the only way of salvation, it wouldn't change his mind. Matt just didn't care, he said that he wasn't going to change for God or anyone else and wanted to live just for himself.
He heard the Gospel, he discussed the penalty for sin and he engaged in a discussion about the way of salvation, he was an agnostic and despite an almost thirty minute conversation, his apathy shone through. He didn't even care enough to support or argue his point of view, he just said it didn't phase him. To finish off, he was left with this question, "Would you trade the small cup of pleasures in this life, purely a gift from God at the expense of an ocean of suffering in the next?" There wasn't much of an answer but he has heard the bad news and the Good News and is accountable for his actions. Please pray for as he heads off tonight, that God may work and he will not be able to sleep until he has been made right with God.
As you read this, let the encouragement be there, evangelism is the most natural extension of our salvation. Though it may be scary, though it may bring fear, let us be encouraged that if Christ can save someone as wretched as me, surely he can save men and women anywhere!
Let us rejoice in the salvation offered in Jesus Christ and boldly proclaim it to anyone and everyone! As this week goes on, please keep Matt and Josh in prayer as well as the many others who interacted with the team and those who will be heading out to share the truth of the Gospel. May many come to salvation and may God be glorified!
Soli Deo Gloria!
On Friday night at the Gold Coast we had a great night of evangelism. It was busy and after setting up and praying together as a team, we started handing out tracts. It wasn't long before most of the team were in gospel conversations.
A few times throughout the night, we used the sketchboard while preaching and God drew in people to listen. In fact, one man was asking the preacher a number of questions that he had, which drew in more people to listen. After a good while of discussion and being challenged to repent and trust in Christ, he left, counting the cost.
We also brought a flipchart down that goes through the message of sin, judgement, heaven and hell, and the cross. It was great to see many people stop to have a look at it as one of our team explained the message.
Please pray for those who heard the gospel on Friday.
This evening, after a day of sketch boarding training, the team headed into the city, with a decent sized team and a range of visiting members (from other outreaches), there were many interested in testing out new skills for sharing the good news in good ways. The night went absolutely fantastically, with many people taking the time to stop and engage. At one stage there were 10 team members in conversations from those who had stopped to listen to the preacher and were approached as the preaching finished.
Those who were out in Queen St mall received a wide range of sketches, as there were new and colourful designs on display.
There were many who had the opportunity to speak with the team tonight and many opportunities were seized. Please be praying for the many people who heard, listened to and engaged with the preaching tonight, that they will consider the Gospel message, consider their sinfulness and have their hearts changed by God.
One stand out conversation from the evening was with a couple, Marcus and Gwen, they were simply posed with the question, "What is the world's biggest problem?", Gwen said it was a lack of compassion in the world, as people love money and power, then decided to rephrase it as "People loving the wrong things" and Marcus said it was America, as Donald Trump had so much support but after a small discussion Marcus to admitted surely the biggest problem was love for the wrong things. The one he had in mind was just Donald Trump.
"Love for the wrong things", there isn't really a much easier segway into the Gospel, so that is where the conversation headed, except Marcus decided more of a discussion was required as he boldly professed that there was no God. And Gwen mentioned she wasn't sure but believe we should take better care of our Earth.
A simple discussion about origins came up and a discussion was had about this universe and its complexity, if no one denies the requirement for a designer, purpose and builder for a building, why would they do such with a infinitely more complex universe? It is always an interesting question, with rarely an answer given. Tonight Marcus acknowledged the thought but decided to try another route, he quickly jumped to another argument about fossils, we discussed what conditions are required to cause fossils, a great weight over a short period of time. The question was posed, what event in history seems to fit that information? He couldn't think of any, so it was suggested maybe a world wide flood, as recorded in the pages of scripture.
After a little more discussion Marcus made a few attempts at leaving as he was much less sure of his answers as he had once been but Gwen who was interested wanted him to stay. Finally Marcus asked, "Have you heard what Stephen Fry said?", phrased simply as, "I can't believe in God because there so much evil in this world, that is not our fault." As an answer was given, starting in the Garden of Eden, where Adam and Eve both willingly disobeyed God, bringing the penalty of their actions upon themselves, Marcus made a final effort to leave and this time Gwen followed. Sadly Marcus didn't want to contend with the truth of God's Word and was doing all he could to prevent having to consider God and His truth. They couple took tracts and heard a small portion of the message.
Please pray for Marcus and Gwen as they venture off into the world, pray that they will be unable to think about anything else until that have surrendered to Christ as Lord, pray that God uses this simple conversation as a big piece of the puzzle in bringing them unto Himself.
Please take the time to Thank God for the great opportunities that were provided this evening and commit the team, the further outreaches in the coming days and all who will be exposed to the Gospel to the Lord and pray that many may hear the Good News and trust in Christ!
Soli Deo Gloria!
Under the threat of rain, with lightning around the team headed on their way to the Queen St Mall in Brisbane. With a strong body of labourers we set up the stuff, prayed and together in Christ we spread out a little to share the Gospel. As the night wore on and the rain came, the team set up an umbrella over the amplifier allowing the preaching to continue whilst it was raining.
With some early introductory preaching and small but consistent crowds a range of conversations were started and sustained by listening to the preacher. Though preaching doesn't always bring massive crowds, let us pray for the many who heard snippets as they walked past, for the numbers who stopped and let us praise God for the ones who were able to talk about Christ because of the preaching!
During the night there were many encouraging conversations, here is a small snippet;
There was a man who had headed out for the night to indulge in all the world has to offer. This man, walked through the area and was engaged, starting a conversation over the question, "Is there anything more important than money?" Whilst being offered a million dollar tract. He started talking about what was important to him, deciding that it was his life which was most valuable, for apart from it, nothing else matters. This lead into a discussion about what happens after we die because surely God will judge us.
This man talk for a little while but was keen to head off, he didn't want his indulgence in sin to be effected by having to consider what God had to say. He mentioned that God didn't exist and when asked why he said, he didn't want God to exist. Discussing God's existence led into a closing statement on his behalf, "If God does exist, I am going to hell." Whilst trying to explain that we all deserve hell yet, there was a way of salvation he headed off. Please pray for this man, he heard little pieces about God and he took a tract. May God use this encounter as the beginning of salvation!
Only moments later upon asking the same question to a young married couple, the answer was given, "Love". So we discussed the importance of love, getting to a place again where we were discussing what happens when our lives are over, when love is gone and when we are dying. To which the question was posed, will anything matter after you die?
This young couple, Peter and Adina (non-English name), were great to converse with, Adina knew English quite well and her husband not quite so much. During the conversation she was translating the words spoken to make sure he knew what was going on. The conversation was slow moving but very important. It turned out that this couple were Catholics, they professed that through a trust in Jesus, constant asking forgiveness and continually trying ones best they could make it into Heaven.
This was an interesting conversation, through a back and forth asking about what different elements had led them to their conclusion and overall it ended up, with them hearing many verses from the Bible and having the opportunity to hear how Christ, Paul and James had separately, in different aspects discussed salvation, yet had all reached the same conclusion, it is Jesus alone who is the Saviour and only His work on the cross has the power to make someone righteous in the sight of God.
Sadly the conversation came toward a close and neither Peter nor Adina showed signs of acknowledging this amazing truth of God's word. Yet we know that God's word, God's truth does not return void, we know that it is a humbling thing to admit you are wrong in front of another, so let us join together in prayer, committing this young couple to God, that they may take the time to read the word of God in depth and through God's saving Grace may they come to see the truth that Jesus Christ is the only way of salvation and His sacrifice on the cross is all we need to be right before God!
To cap off the night a young man Raphael answered the question, "Is there anything more important than money?" With the answer, health. An interesting answer, a new answer but still none the less, had direct relevance to eternity. Upon asking him, what would happen after health was finally and irreplaceably lost, after one died, what he thought would happen, Raphael answered a few ways. Firstly he discussed how he was an agnostic and truly he seemed to be. Often you find that people claim to be agnostic, yet will adamantly argue against the existence of God, yet Raphael was very different.
He summarised his belief as, "I'm not sure there is evidence for God's existence or against it", then proceeded to discuss and ask mostly questions for the next fifty minutes. Starting in the Godhood of Jesus Christ, juggling an understanding of what Christ claimed, what Christ did and how we know such things. We entered into a discussion on why the bible is believable and quickly transitioned to a great question, "Can you write about specific life events of another person between four-hundred and fifteen hundred years before they will even exist?" As of yet there has never been a person who has responded with, "Yes".
Raphael was the same, "Of course not," he replied. Opening him up to the opportunity to ask, "How would one explain such a phenomenon then?" This was an interesting discussion, he said he'd never thought about it before. He said this was a new question and quite surprisingly he said, it seemed that the only answer was the supernatural.
Our topic turned towards truth, Raphael acknowledged absolute truth exists and then faced the question, "Where does it come from?" He very honestly stated that he had no idea and no source under his current beliefs and then asked, "But what about yourself? Where do you think truth comes from?" Raphael listened intently as the Christian God was explained to him. He then asked, "What about all the different religions? Where did they come from?" After some discussion, acknowledging that as humans our in built desire was to disobey and dishonour God, it was only natural to assume that we would stretch that to the world of religion, making up and claiming false ways to get to Heaven.
The conversation was getting exciting, it seemed that with every question, with every new discussion Raphael was thinking more about Christianity. With each moment as the conversation progressed he wanted nothing more than to understand who God was, what our problem was and what the fix had to be. His next question was, "Why Christianity?" Answered in the simplest of ways, (apart from all the prior discussion), with a discussion about God's character, if God is Perfect, if God is Just and if God is Loving, a Perfect God can't stand sin, a Just God must punish sin and a Loving God wants to save sinners.
How could one reconcile this, the only way is if God was able to punish sin, pour out justice and yet allow sinners to live. Meaning someone had to take the Hell punishment, the death penalty sinners deserved and be a substitute for the sinner. This was answered in true biblical fashion by explaining who Jesus was. After the first explanation Raphael said he didn't understand so it was explained again, this time he nodded in agreement, acknowledging that it made sense.
The end of the night drew near but the conversation wasn't quite finished, we continued through later than planned as one by one Raphael asked a question and it was answered. From the problem of pain, through the question of whether Christians could just do whatever they wanted as long as they said a prayer at the end of a day, past the question of why each sin in the sight of God deserves hell and why hell should be eternal.
As it was time to leave, Raphael said, "I have just one more question," it was a final question about salvation, a final clarifying question about the way of having sins forgiven. This conversation which seemed as if it would be purely apologetics from the start ended up mostly being about Jesus Christ, sin and the saving power of the Gospel!
Please pray for Raphael, please pray that this Easter is the first Easter he is able to truly celebrate. Pray that he read his Bible, pray that he surrendered his life to Jesus Christ and pray that through the power of God his life will ever be changed! God is King and Jesus is the Risen Lord!
As a team we also ask that you consider us in prayer, the work of evangelism is exciting and tiring but please pray that we keep vigilant in the word of the Lord, that we continue day by day to seek God's truth and that we are continually in repentance. Pray that our love for God, our love for the lost will continue to grow that we might not sin against God!
May you also commit the many who were exposed to the preaching of the word to the Lord, that this exposure to the Gospel will be the start of a life long journey as a child of God! Thank you for the prayer support, it would be a wonderful opportunity to have you join us on the team!
Soli Deo Gloria!
As the team assembled and headed out to Queen St Mall at the heard of Brisbane City we reminisced of the astounding truth that no matter which government is in power, God is in control. No one has a position of authority apart from it being granted to them by God. Together we prayed committing the night to the Lord and asking that He would bring many along to hear the Good News.
We started the night with the sketch board, our usual PA system was missing in action so we used a small hand held speaker that packs a decent volume. This allowed the preaching to be well heard and a few people stopped in to listen to the message that was being preached. As the preaching took place a number of conversations were started with those slowing to listen, including with a young lady who had just landed from New Zealand and after a while of dialogue took a bible and a Gospel tract!
As the preaching came to an end a conversation was started with Matt and Elle. Matt professed to be a Christian and Elle said she wasn't. A simple question was asked, "What did you think of the preaching?" Which lead straight into a conversation allowing them to set the tone of the discussion.
Elle was fairly quiet and didn't say much but just listened where as Matt was keen to engage. After a few minutes the question was posed to Matt, "How are you getting to Heaven?" to which he replied. "As long as you keep God's commandments you should be okay." To be honest, he was exactly right, if anyone had kept God's commandments they would be able to enter Heaven but as Matt soon discovered, there isn't any human who had or could keep such commandments. In fact by God's standard we all stand condemned, deserving the full weight of God's wrath. When Matt heard this, he asked, "Then why are you guys out here? Doesn't that mean we all should go to Hell?"
Again he had hit the nail, by God's justice, according to our sin, we certainly do deserve Hell. The opportunity to share the saving work of Jesus Christ was there and it wasn't one to be missed, it was promptly explained that our sin does cause us to be damned yet God came into this world, He was in human form, lived a sinless life and suffered the wrath of God we deserve.
Three days later rising from the grave, proving He is God and conquering sin and death. So that if we acknowledge our sinfulness, understand we cannot save ourselves and surrender to Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour our sin debt can be paid and we can be set free from slavery to sin. After having this explained Matt, with a smile on his face, said "Thank you for that, I have never heard or understood that before." He took a Gospel tract and may he trust in the saving work of Jesus Christ!
A man who chatted with the team entered into the discussion after being asked if there was anything in this world more important than money. He answered, with the thought that happiness was more important. This man made comment about where he found his happiness and why it was so important to him but as we moved towards a discussion about eternity he suddenly became a little less sure. He said he enjoyed discussing such a topic but had already made up his mind.
When asked what had lead him to his conclusions of agnosticism he discussed that there was no need for a creator. When challenged on this idea in regards to the certainty that a building needs a builder so a creation surely has a creator, he admitted it was a good point but that humanity had proven there was no need for a God.
Soon afterwards when discussing why one should consider the claims of Christianity this question was posed to the man, "Can you prophesy in highly accurate detail, specific life events about someone who won't be born for another thousand years?" The man readily admitted this, humanly speaking, was impossible. When it was explained that this is exactly what happened in regards to Jesus Christ and was asked how such a thing was possible, he suddenly fell silent then proclaimed, "I don't need to answer you, I was a Hindu by tradition but now I am an agnostic by choice!" and quickly left.
The team also engaged in a lengthy conversation with a young man named Olly, the conversation was filled with discussions, from the deep question, whether truth exists, touching on why we really shouldn't steal, spending some time in the definitive claims of Jesus Christ about His deity and the way to Heaven and dwelling deeply on whether or not one can know if Christ really rose from the grave.
Olly was a very respectful and interesting young man who readily professed to be open minded, which is always a strange claim. When people make such a statement, they often seem to imply that they are able to accept any belief or worldview. Yet forget to add the clause, "as long as it directly agrees with what I believe". Though Olly was different, he simply meant that he was unsure if anyone could ever know something they hadn't personally experienced and therefore he was unsure of such a deep question as to the destination of people's eternity.
Olly made many statements of truth, from adamantly defending piracy as it wasn't directly harming anyone (the producers were already rich enough) or that there is 11 dimensions and infinite possible universes. So there was a range of questions posed along the lines of, "Does truth exist? Where does it come from? How can a human trust their own brain and it's ability to reason? Does an objective standard exist?" These questions took a large portion of the time and it seemed to make Olly think.
Sadly as the night wore on the conversation was drawing to a close and he left recieving on final challenge, "Eternity is an awfully time to, "not be sure", so whilst you still have time, consider and make a decision about the claim, "Did Jesus Christ rise from the dead, proving He is God?" for in answering this claim we must either acknowledge there is a God and surrender to Him or we are truly in this world with no purpose and will continue living like we were created with one."
It was a pleasure to talk with Olly, please keep him in prayer as he walks away from the conversation and takes the time to consider what was said. Please also pray for Matt and Elle, the mystery Hindu and for the many others who were spoken with, handed a tract or exposed to the Gospel this evening. We know God is in control, all things go according to His plan, so let us plead to Him on behalf of those who heard the Gospel!
Please also pray for the team, that more people will want to come out (not just Saturday's but throughout the week) and that each team member will continue seeking God, surrendering to Him, preaching the Gospel to themselves and therefore growing in Holiness throughout the week!
Soli Deo Gloria!
This evening, the team headed out into Queen St Mall, in the heart of Brisbane city. For a range of years it has been a weekly occurrence, each Saturday night, yet without fail each time God brings along new people to hear His message of salvation. Tonight was no different, as the team met up for prayer at seven, there were already a few team members in conversations with passers by and as always we were hanging around for a while after the designated evangelism time finishing off conversations.
The night started quickly, there was a small threat of rain but thankfully nothing came of it. Early in the night we started with some sketch boarding alongside some preaching, a man came along early, who name was Dave and very quickly started engaging, he was very animated and quickly a crowd had formed to listen to the discussion which was taking place. Dave argued that all truth and morality was relative and simply by making the claim that all truth was relative had refuted his own argument. Dave continued discussing but after a a few questions when he had no more objections he didn't want to hear anymore about God and abruptly left.
Thankfully a decent crowd stuck around and heard the Gospel articulated and were given te challenge to consider if they are trusting in Jesus Christ and His work on the cross alone, or if they were relying on themselves to get to Heaven.
The preaching drew in a few different couples who stayed around and conversed with team members for varying lengths of time. One couple even stayed for an entire three hours!
One man the team talked with was named Steve, he was a professing Atheist. He explained that he didn't believe God existed on the basis that there wasn't enough evidence. We discussed a wide range of topics, starting with a quick jog through morality, its basis and why it matters, past the evidence for an intelligent designer in the complexity of creation and finally we spent a decent amount of time on the evidence for the reliability of the Bible.
Steve who a few minutes earlier seemed so sure, was suddenly in a place out of his depth, though he held strongly to an atheistic belief, he never spent much time considering who Jesus is and whether or not Jesus rose from the grave. Steve had strong opinions but we challenged the basis of his belief. Please be keeping Steve in prayer and pray that God will use our discussion with him to bring about salvation.
Just as he was making a move to leave he asked a final decisive question. Why not other religions? Why Christianity? To which we were able to discuss a little more, summarised finally with the simple explanation, all other religions, and proclaimed ways to Heaven teach that humans, in their fallen and evil state can somehow work hard, to improve enough to deserve the recognition of a Holy God. Where as Christianity states that we could never please God, contrarily we deserve punishment for our sin, yet God in His love, became a man, in the person of Jesus Christ (fully God and fully man), lived a perfect life, died a sacrificial death, suffering God's wrath for sin and rose from the grave, so that we can have our sin paid for, if we surrender to Him as Lord and Saviour through repentance and belief.
Steve had never heard this before and said it was interesting, he did have to leave but would consider such a claim.
Another brief highlight was with four young men, Damo, James, Josh and Thomas. Each proclaiming a level of skepticism or agnosticism and one boldly declaring he was an atheist. We started out discussing, what the worlds biggest problem was, with a range of answers, from racism, to littering and even selfishness getting some air time we soon were into a discussion about morality.
Damo, declared that morality was relative and determined by the majority, James (seemingly speaking for the other three), declared that we are taught morality by our parents. We started to deconstruct these misconceptions. Damo quickly stepped back, when we discussed whether or not slavery was wrong because the majority of people for the vast majority of history believed it was. James, continued on with the family structure and your surroundings but soon was denying certain things were wrong on a level higher than parental authority. We got to a point where each attempt at explaining morality seemed to have a hole in it.
Thankfully there was one answer that hadn't been considered, the fact that we were created in the image of God, inherently with knowledge of good and evil. This seemed to settle that discussion and now we were covering ground quickly, again we hit a bit of a bump, "How can we be sure there is a God?", Josh interjected.
We had very quickly jumped into a much deeper discussion, if God exists, there must be a standard by which we are judged. So we set out onto a few steps into a journey, we discussed the prophetic ability seemingly contained in the Bible, we juggled some questions about displays of the supernatural and we systematically addressed the validity of the eye witness testimony that Jesus Christ had risen from the dead.
The young men had never really discussed this side of the evidence before and were in a world of unknown, Damo tried to stabilise the rocking of his worldview, with a summary line, "Isn't it all about just being pretty good anyway, I think surely if we just try to be decent people it will all work out". This presented a perfect opportunity to in depth explain the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, after hearing the way of salvation through Christ alone, the men seemed to not be quite so sure, of their beliefs. They did have to head off and so they left with one final challenge, "Did Jesus Christ rise from the grave?"
Many others engaged the preaching, conversed with team members or were exposed to the Gospel through tracts and other literature, please keep Dave, Steve, Damo, James, Josh and Thomas in prayer, alongside all others who were exposed to the truth of the Gospel, for we know God is sovereign over salvation and may we plead on behalf of the hearers of His eternal truths that they may come to repentance and faith in Christ Jesus!
Soli Deo Gloria!