“beep…beep…beep…beep…” my alarm sounded all to early this morning, as I rolled over and looked at the clock I saw that it was 7am, which was not cool considering I didn’t get home from work till after 1am, and then time I got to bed it was near on 3am.
Instantly my mind began to give me many reasons to punch the alarm and then roll back over to get a few more hours of sleep. Surely, I could skip the evangelist conference I was planning on attending this morning, after all it is only a “conference” and not evangelism, they would hardly notice me missing. But, as I lay there I began to think about how good it would be to spend the morning with many other evangelists, the work of evangelism is hard enough, but spending time with other people who have the same passion as you, and the same zeal that you have is always uplifting.
So, very slowly I got out of bed, and began to prepare for the day. At 8:45am, I arrived at the church where the conference was being held, and within minutes of entering the building I was no regretting coming, it was such an uplifting time of worship and of fellowship with other evangelists. We all come from a wide background, and we all have different styles and methods of evangelism, however, we all share the same goal and passion, that of seeing God glorified through the saving of souls. As 12pm rolled around part of me wanted to stay in this time of fellowship and teaching with my brothers and sisters in arms, however, we all had to break off and go our own separate ways, and to our own ministries.
The morning served to be a major boost for me, I was really looking forward to getting out on the streets and making Christ Jesus known. The more I think about the gift of evangelism and the office of an evangelist, I can’t help but think that it has to be the highest calling any Christian can have, what a great privilege and honour it is to let sinful man know how Christ Jesus can forgive all their sins if they would repent and trust in Him alone.
I arrived on the streets at the usual time, and as I walked through the mall I handed out tracts to all those sitting down, it was good to see a few familiar faces, and it was good to see that those whom we have witnessed to many times still take tracts and re-read them.
The team gathered together around the side of City Hall, and there we beseeched God to have mercy on this city, and to also make Himself known to those who are in darkness, we begged of God to save the lost tonight, and we know that God is faithful to draw His elect unto Himself.
At 9pm, we headed into the Queen Street Mall, and as we were setting up the false prophet of Brisbane decided to drop on by and tell us to watch ourselves tonight as he doesn’t want to have to save us from being hit this week. We thanked him for defending us last week, and once again we encouraged him to repent and trust in Jesus.
Ali was the first preacher for the night, now this young guy has come a long way, when you talk to him he appears as a softly spoken, quiet, and shy kind of guy, yet when he preaches he preaches with a passion and a love for the lost. The thing I love about Ali’s preaching is the fact that he uses much scripture, and his preaching is dripping in theology. But, he doesn’t preach in a way that is over the head of the listeners, but rather he breaks it down so the common man can understand the great truths of Scripture.
After Ali finished preaching, Ralph got up and had a preach. Ralph is a very smart young man, and sometimes I feel sorry for the hecklers he gets, but something that I love about Ralph and his preaching is that he is so humble. In the realm of evangelism it is so easy to get puffed up and become rather proud, but I haven’t seen this with Ralph, he seems to be content in just making Jesus Christ known. As Ralph preached a crowd began to gather so in engaged them in conversation, then kept pointing them to the Cross of Christ, on which Jesus Christ suffered and died for the sins of His people.
After Ralph finished preaching there was a time of one to one witnessing and also tracts being handed out. Things were going smoothly for a time, until… the prophet (false) Pear stood and began to pronounce “THUS SAYETH THE LORD!” He started by taking a King James Only position and attacking us because Ralph used the NASB, and I preach from the ESV, so I challenged him on what he was saying, and Pear turned to me and said, “I know the King James is perfect because I can read the original Arabic in which it was written!” I tried to reason with him, and show him that the Bible was not written in Arabic, but rather in Hebrew and Koine Greek. But, Pear wouldn’t have a bar of it, he began to rant saying he knew the original languages, and that he could translate anything.
This proved interesting, and since I had my Greek New Testament on me, I decided to open it up, read a verse to him, and ask him to translate. His face went from one of arrogance to just no expression. As I read him the verse, I he just glared at me. The verse I read out to him in the Greek was John 1:1, which is a simple verse to translate (even though the JW’s always get it wrong!), since Pear couldn’t tell me what it said, I translated it for him.
Then, Pear said to me and all those around “I was there when they laid the foundation of the world! I am the eternal one!” I replied back to him, “Only God is eternal, and unless you are God, you weren’t there.” Pear once again turned to me, and this time louder said, “I WAS THERE WHEN THEY LAID THE FOUNDATION OF THE EARTH!!!”
I decided to ask Pear straight, “Are you claiming to be God?” Pear smiled and said, “I am the eternal one!” This resulted in me rebuking him for his blasphemy, Pear began to back away screaming at me “LIAR, LIAR, LIAR!”
He then returned, saying, “I am the olive tree and the golden trumpet. I am the lamb with the seven eyes, and Jesus goes before me, clearing my path.” Once again I engaged him with the Scripture, to prove that he was not which he claimed. Pear became more aggressive and yelled about him being a prophet, and that he was Moses from the Old Testament. At this stage I was thinking the only Biblical name he could claim was that of Legion. Dan Kent decided to jump in at this time, and try to get Pear away, so he extended his hand to shake Pear’s. Pear yelled at Dan, “I will not touch a Gentile!” This resulted in us pointing out that Moses actually married a non-Hebrew woman, well, that set Pear off, he came running at me, got within an inch of my face and said, “Moses, killed two of Pharaoh’s guards, and I can do the same, so watch yourself!”
So I asked him, “Pear, are you saying that you will kill me?” He turned got right up in my face and said, “If you call my wife a Gentile I will kill you! Do you understand?” I replied that I understood him, and with that he reached out and began to strangle me. Now, this bloke has a good grip, his grabbed my throat so tight that I completely lost all ability to breathe. Dan and Ralph quickly jumped into action grabbing Pear and pulling him off me. This resulted in the police coming and arresting Pear. Please pray for him.
At around 11:45pm, I decided to get up and preach, so I spoke from Luke 18:9-14, and told about how people often trust in themselves for salvation, but this will never merit it. Rather we must trust in Jesus alone to be saved.
God was good to us, and He gathered a crowd into listen, the cool thing was they just stood and listened. As I preached I noticed that many of them were hanging on every word, and that a couple of people in the crowd were crying. God was at work in hearts of those hearing the gospel.
Please pray for all those who heard the gospel, and pray that God would grant them salvation.
Soli Deo Gloria!
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Brisbane Team (Night) (QLD)
Meets every Saturday night in King George Square 7-10pm.
Brisbane Team (Day) (QLD)
Meets Wednesday afternoons 1-5pm in King George Square (near Adelaide St crossing).
Contact Ryan Hemelaar for more information.