For the next 11 days I will be in Glasgow, Scotland, joining up with Jeremiah Cry Ministries — a ministry from the States. We will be sharing the gospel through open-air preaching and one-to-one witnessing.
The picture to the left sums up my first day. Our team was small in size but more have now arrived. All four of us preached yesterday, with some of us preaching twice. The Lord used brother Paul to bring in a large crowd with many hecklers; he preached for at least an hour. I preached after him with more hecklers, and then we got into some great one-to-ones. It was quite incredible to see the absurdity behind their arguments. But towards the end there were a few who really did begin to see how their worldview does not hold wait, and that what they believe fails to make sense of this world. This opened the door for the gospel!
During one particular conversation I spoke with a relativist about truth. I asked him to define it. The following is not made up:
Relativist chap: “Truth is what we come to learn over time. We once believed the world was flat, now we know the world is round.”
Rob: “Right. So before we came to see that the world is round, was the world round?”
Relativist chap: “No.”
Here's the thing: even if we didn't exist, truth would still exist. And it's absolute. Truth is that which conforms to the mind of God (see John 17:17). So why does the fool embrace absurdity? Because he has a worldview to protect? We must expose in the unbeliever his suppression of the truth (see Romans 1:18-22).
Although it was still only the first day, we did have an encounter with the Police. They were very friendly and cordial, but did warn us against unrest from people who may disagree with the Christian message (we discovered that later in the day, but we praise God that His Word went forth). Some people had apparently complained as we were preaching, and so they came to tell us that we ought to be careful what we say. We defended our right to speak and to share the gospel and they did agree to that. They also took our details and and asked us about the mission, i.e. where we would be and what we would be doing. The reason for this was not to stop us, but rather to let their colleagues know about us and what we would be doing.
Do pray for the team:
1. Please pray the Lord would give the team boldness, wisdom, patience, understanding and a deep love for the people.
2. Please pray that it would please the Lord to grant us favour with the authorities, as well as protection on the street.
3. Please pray the Lord would bind the team together, that there would be unity, and that He would protect us from the devil's schemes.
4. Please pray that God would raise up other Christians who would build upon the foundation that is laid through our witness.
5. Please pray that God's Word would do a mighty and powerful work in those who listen; that they would be saved.
Soli Deo Gloria!
On Monday, we had the privilege of being asked to evangelise at the Redlands Easter Family Festival. With about 20,000 people expected to be there, we knew it would be a great day to get gospel tracts out and speak to many people.
This is a 2 minute report from the festival:
To our faithful King!
Operation 513 Olympic Outreach Video Blog - (Day 6)
Operation 513 Olympic Outreach Video Blog - (Day 5)
Operation 513 Olympic Outreach Video Blog - (Day 4)
Operation 513 Olympic Outreach Video Blog - (Day 3)
Operation 513 Olympic Outreach Video Blog - (Day 2)
Operation 513 Olympic Outreach Video Blog - (Day 1)
From Rob Hughes, London team leader, currently on mission with JeremiahCry Ministries in Glasgow, Scotland:
Yesterday was a real blessing witnessing with the team. It's truly wonderful to labour with so many faithful men of God in the proclamation of God's Word.
Here are some of the great conversations I had...
I spoke with a chap (David) who beats himself up over the wrong he has done in the past, and so he labours to "fix" the past through many good deeds. This is ultimately a self-righteous pursuit to justify oneself in the eyes of God.
I explained to him that forgiveness found in Christ sets us free. We are saved and transformed, the evidence of which is seen by the good deeds we perform. When we receive salvation our desires change. The born again man wants to perform deeds "...in keeping with repentance." It doesn't mean he never sins, however the new desires born in him propel him to exalt the Lord with his life.
R.C. Sproul explains it like this:
"We are covered in an alien righteousness, a righteousness that is not our own, but under that covering we are still inclined to break the law of God. Justification declares us righteous, it does not make us sinless.
We are granted citizenship in God’s kingdom based only on the righteousness of Christ, but good works are not an optional part of the Christian life. In fact, believers must do good, not to secure justification but to evidence their justification."
There is great freedom found in Christ. We do not live under a heavy burden with regards to living a godly life. As new born believers we do not live godly lives in order to receive favour with God, rather we live godly lives out of gratitude and praise to God because we have already received favour with Him.
This is why we read in Galatians 5:1: "For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery."
I explained this as best I could to David. He did listen and appeared to get what I was saying, although it seemed that he was more concerned with earning favour with God, instead of humbly receiving the grace that God offers. He left with a tract and a New Testament. Do pray for him.
Together with others on the team, I also spoke with two young men who had grown up Catholic. They appeared quite nominal and were very open to hear the gospel. As we shared with them it definitely appeared that the light came on. They really seemed excited to understand and know why the Son of God lived as a man and why He died on a cross for the sin of the world.
~ Jesus lived a sinless, perfect life, in order to be the perfection we can't be, and then He died on a cross to pay the penalty for the sins we have committed. As a result of what Jesus has done, when a man repents and trusts in Him, God treats that man as if he lived Christ's life, and He treats Christ as if He lived that man's life.
It was a blessed day indeed. Do pray for all those who heard the gospel.
The sun was out, and the weather was beautiful as we arrived in Sydney for a day of outreach. Since moving to Goulburn in April 2011, I’ve wanted to be able to do regular outreaches in Sydney, but so far with all my work in Goulburn I’ve found it rather hard to make the two hour journey to the Sydney CBD. But today the opportunity to preach Christ had finally arrived.
There were three of us who came out for the outreach this day, Peter Noble, Sean and myself. At 11:30am we met at the Town Hall and from there we began to minister. I must admit things were a bit different today, I have been on many outreaches, but what I saw today I’ve never seen done
before. Peter Noble had brought along a wheelie bin that he had modified to use as a portable sound system for his work as a Christian hip hop artist, now while that was fairly cool, what he did with it was excellent. Peter jumped on the mic and began to do some Christian rap on the streets of Sydney, and as he did this held tracts in his hands. Many people came up to him to take tracts, and many hung around to listen. During this time Sean and I were able to have some excellent conversations with the people who stopped to listen to the music.
I got to speak to one young lady from Sydney who had grown up in a “Christian” home, but that all changed she said when she discovered that she was a lesbian. She said when she came out as a lesbian her parents, family and friends all condemned her and had nothing to do with her. As a result she was hardened towards the Bible. The conversation I had with her started off by her coming to take a tract, then reading it, then she wanted to talk about how the Bible views women. We spoke for a bit about the Old Testament laws, and also about how the New Testament viewed women, she seemed very surprised to find that the Bible is not anti-woman, but rather, Christianity is the only religion that affirms a woman’s value. From this point we spoke about the issue of sin, and how all sin is a crime against God (even homosexuality). She was quite open at this point, so we continued to talk about the Gospel. But then the hurt of the past came up. She spoke about how all her “Christian” friends left her when she said she was a lesbian, and how no one would speak to her. In reply to this I took her to John 4 and spoke about the woman of Samaria and how she was a despised woman, an adulteress who no one liked, but then I showed her Jesus, sitting by the well talking to her, and revealing that He is the Saviour. I was able to show her from that Scripture that Jesus is a friend of sinners, and that He is able to save the vilest of criminals.
When she heard this she said, “I like Jesus, He’s really good.” To which I replied, “No, you don’t like Jesus, as if you did, you’d do as He said.” This then led into a conversation about repentance, and how even though Jesus says the hard things, He says it out of love towards the lost. By the end of our conversation she was nodding in agreement with what I had said, and stated that she would read John’s Gospel. Please pray for her.
By now the rapping had finished, so we headed down to the Pitt Street Mall for some open air preaching. Peter Noble was the first man up, he preached on true Christianity and not just honouring God with your lips. As he preached a man came up to me all angry about the preaching. Turns out he was a local busker who hated what we were doing. He said that we weren’t allowed to preach here, and if we didn’t stop he’d call the police and rangers. I requested he do call the police as I knew we weren’t breaking the law. The man went off in a huff and then started calling people.
Peter Noble by now had finished preaching, so I stood up to preach. I spoke on “Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved.” While I was preaching I noticed two police officers ride towards me on their bikes. They then stopped behind me and listened for a bit. I was later informed that a woman from a shop had also complained about the preaching and called the police, upon seeing them she rushed up to them, but the police told her that we weren’t breaking the law and thus we could continue.
After I finished preaching Sean got up and preached, and a few people stopped to listen.
Overall it was a great day of witnessing. Sydney is hard ground, but is in desperate need of the Gospel. Please pray for all those we spoke to today.
Soli Deo Gloria!