It was encouraging to see that during our outreach last night at the Gold Coast, the team were so engrossed in various gospel conversations, that it meant we finished half an hour later than we usually do. We had 15 labourers on the team.
One conversation we had was with a man holidaying from Dubai who is in the police force over there. He said that Dubai is such a city of sin, worse than the Gold Coast. He was raised in a Muslim family, but he has been living life his own way and so when he was asked if he will go to Heaven when he dies, he responded, "No I think I will go to Hell."
He said, "After I spent a night out in Dubai, I feel guilty for the things I've done and it worries me where I am going to go after I die. But I think if I just say sorry to God and clean up my life I think I'll maybe spend 40 years in Hell and then go to Heaven afterwards."
I explained to him that that is not how it is going to work. Because Jesus told a story in the Bible about a rich man who went to Hell and a poor man who went to Heaven, and when the rich man wanted someone to come down to him to cool his tongue because the anguish he was in, Jesus describes that there is a great chasm between Heaven and Hell so that no one can pass between the two places. That means, where you go after you die, you are there forever.
Moreover, I explained, imagine a criminal stood before a judge and said, "Judge, yesterday I murdered that person, but today I am really sorry and I won't do it again. So please let me go. Would that work?" He replied, "Of course not."
"That is why the only way is if we have a perfect person who can pay our fine for us, which will satisfy God's justice on our behalf and therefore allow us to enter Heaven. That is, Jesus - who is God, and died and rose for our forgiveness. As he was hearing this, this man was beginning to grasp the gospel and asked a number of good questions. He was happy to take a gospel of John to start reading. He asked, "Will you be here next week so that I can come back and talk further?" "Yes definitely", I said.
To God be the glory!
For our outreach at the Gold Coast we had over 15 people on the team. It was chilly, but still there were plenty of people walking around.
We talked with all sorts, from those who subscribe to reincarnation, to those who admit they love their sin, and even to those who think that whatever anyone believes is true for them. We also got to speak to a Christadelphian family who were not aware that the Bible speaks of salvation by grace through faith alone (rather than through baptism), the deity of Christ, the reality of Hell and personhood and deity of the Holy Spirit.
As they were shown the verses in the Bible about these things, they understood what it said and so had no rebuttal. They said they would read about these things in the Bible when they got home.
Please pray for all who heard the gospel tonight - through the hundreds of gospel tracts that went out, through the one to one conversations and through the preaching of the gospel in the open air. To God be all the glory!
It is amazing to see God prepare people's hearts to hear the gospel. Last night at the Gold Coast, as one person on the team was preaching with many listening in, others were handing out gospel tracts or getting into converations.
One conversation that started was with a man named David. He was asked whether he thought he'd go to Heaven and he said, "I don't think I will. I constantly think about this day and night, about where I am going to go when I die. I try my best each day but I know I fail every time. I don't know what to do, I think I'll be sent to Hell."
What he said, called to mind the words of Jesus when He said, "Come to me all who labour and are heavy-laden and I will give you rest." (Matt. 11:28) So the team member explained the gospel to David and it was as if a light bulb went on in his mind, and he said, "Oh I get it now!"
David was also encouraged to make sure he counts the cost of following Jesus first before he sets out to, because it would be worse for him to put his hand to the plow and look back. He was very thankful for that chat and said he would get into the Bible that evening.
To God be the glory!
It was wet last night at the Gold Coast for our weekly outreach there. It was also very quiet. But still God provided enough people to be walking by, so a good number of tracts went out and some gospel conversations were had.
Please pray for Isaac and Jordan who, in separate conversations, both were listening intently as they heard the gospel. After hearing about trusting in Christ and turning from sin, they said "I need to do that today".
We thank the Lord that He uses unworthy servants like us in His Great Commission. To God be the glory!
Come help us share the gospel, see times and locations here: www.operation513.com/street-evangelism-teams
It was a wonderful outreach last night for Good Friday at the Gold Coast. It was extraordinarily busy and we got to share with people about why Good Friday is actually good.
We had a team of about 15 of us, handing out tracts and chatting to people, and a few preaching. God drew in people to listen to the preaching and it sparked curiosity in the things of God. It was also great seeing the gospels of John were flying off the free Bibles table.
In fact, one lady came up to the person on the team who just finished preaching with the sketchboard and said, "I'm from India and don't know much about Christianity at all. But just earlier in the day I thought I want to get a Bible, and then when you mentioned about taking a Bible I saw this as a confirmation. I would love to have one, I want to read it for myself."
Glory to God that His word went out!
We praise the Lord for last night's outreach at the Gold Coast. We had about 15 people on the team. It was lightly raining at times throughout the night, but it didn't keep the people away.
Amongst the dozens of gospel conversations that were had, one stand out conversation was with a man from Colombia. He is studying English here for 3 more months. He had a Catholic upbringing and thought he was going to Heaven simply because his Catholic priest told him he would.
He had had never heard the message of grace, and thought his deeds had something to do with saving him. After talking a while, he came to grasp the gospel and was very happy to take a Bible to start reading. We also got his number to pass onto a local pastor in the area who will follow him up. Please pray for Andres.
To God be the glory that His Word is going out!
After an afternoon of rain we wondered whether it would be a wet night of outreach at the Gold Coast, but God answered our prayers by keeping the rain at bay.
We had a team of 6 of us, with some of the regulars away. But it was NOT a dull night...for a number of reasons.
Among the different people we spoke to, one was a man named Ethan. He had gone to Catholic schooling when he was young and during school he would ask his teachers about eternal things, but they kept saying to him, "Don't worry about that stuff. It's not important." So ever since then he was confused about what Christianity was about.
As we were talking with him, he said he's a good chap, but after being shown the law of God, he saw that, like the rest of us, he hasn't lived up to it. So we explained the news of Christ's death and resurrection taking the punishment we deserve in our place, and he remarked, "I have never understood any of these things. This makes sense." He was happy to take a gospel of John and said that he would start reading it everyday.
Later on in the evening, a man came up to the team and someone on the team began sharing the gospel with him. This man asked for prayer. As he was being prayed for, all of a sudden he started moving uncontrollably, his voice changed, and he began screaming out and making all kinds of noises. It drew a lot of attention from people walking by and he kept being like that (and becoming increasingly violent) until the police arrived and then he was instantly back to normal.
We don't know exactly what's happening behind the scenes in the spiritual realm but we know God is always in control. And the gospel went out to a lot of people tonight, so to God be the glory!
On Friday night at the Gold Coast we had a smaller team than usual, but God was faithful as always and provided plenty of people to talk to about Christ.
In fact, one of the conversations that the team had lasted for an hour and a half with a man named Mario. He was raised Catholic and thought that his goodness would get him to Heaven. He had plenty of really good questions from things in the Bible, and he was explained the right way of salvation.
Please pray that God will soften his heart to realise that no goodness in him will get him to Heaven and that he will instead trust only in Jesus' sacrifice on the cross for his forgiveness. Mario said that he is a postman from Melbourne and he happens to know a pastor from a local Protestant church on his postal route and so he is going to ask him some questions to find out more. We also gave him a gospel of John to start reading while he is on holidays (he has a full Bible at home).
The rest of team had some good chats as well and were handing out hundreds of gospel tracts (in a variety of languages!). The Gold Coast is an such international tourist destination, that is really useful having gospel tracts in a bunch of different languages so that people can read the message in their own native tongue.
To God be the glory that His word has gone forth!
After praying together as a team, we set up our free Bibles table in English and Arabic, and then started getting into conversations with people and handing out gospel tracts.
There was a man named Alan who I noticed was listening to the preacher for the entire duration of the time he was speaking. Then later on, he sat down on a bench which happened to be right next to where a team member was sitting and so they got chatting.
Alan expressed how he is from the UK on a working visa but is leaving Australia in only a matter of days. He said that a few months ago in Perth a person shared the gospel with him. He has been thinking about what he heard, but hasn't done anything about it.
So last night, the team member was able to further explain the gospel to him and answer his questions. Alan said that he can't keep putting it off; he realised that he needs to actually heed the message. The conversation continued for over an hour and a half.
In fact, later in the night he returned and said that after the conversation he had just had, he called up the person who had witnessed to him in Perth and said that he wants to trust in Christ.
To God be the glory!
There were a variety of people that we got to speak to, including some individuals and even groups of Muslims. In fact, one of the team had an extensive conversation with a Muslim who was listening to the preacher as he presented the gospel using the sketch board and then he came up afterwards to us with some questions.
He asked, "If you get to Heaven only through what Jesus has done on the cross, why can't you just keep on sinning?" So I explained that if someone trusts in Jesus, they will want to turn from their sin, and if someone just wants to continue living life their own way, that is evidence that they are not truly believing.
After speaking for about half an hour with him, explaining about how Jesus is God and how forgiveness is not something you can earn, I noticed another person who had been listening to the preacher for a little while. So I asked him whether he would get to Heaven.
This man's name was Israel and he said he was a Mormon but has been living his own way recently. He thought that keeping the commandments would save him, but when I showed him how he (like the rest of us) haven't kept them, it led into explaining the cross. I urged him to count the cost, and repent and trust alone in Jesus' death on the cross to save him before it is too late. But I knew I had to tell him not to go back to his Mormon church.
So I said "Let's say someone comes up to us right now and says 'I have a brand new revelation from God, another testament.' Now we should check to see whether this new revelation lines up with the old revelation, that is, the Bible, right?" He agreed.
I continued, "And if it doesn't line up, it's not from God. Now Joseph Smith came a couple hundred years ago and said he has a new revelation from God, 'another testament' - the Book of Mormon. What we should do is compare this new book with the Bible to see if it lines up and if it doesn't, we know that Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon is not from God." He said, "That makes sense."
I continued, "Now if you look in 2 Nephi 25:23 in the Book of Mormon it says that you are saved by grace AFTER all that you can do, when Ephesians 2:8-9 in the Bible says in essence that you are saved by grace APART from anything you can do. That's a clear contradiction, isn't it?" He began nodding his head. It seems he had never considered this. He didn't have a Bible currently where he lives, so I gave him a New Testament to start reading. Please pray for him.
To God be the glory!