What an immense privilege we as Christians have to speak with people about something that is of eternal value.
Here's a 4 minute video report from the night:
To the praise of His name!
The Operation 513 Team evangelized Basildon today and we were blessed with fabulous weather. The team consisted of Rob, Chuck and Myself and a young man named Sasha who lived nearby and had contacted me through the website. We set up and prayed. This was Rob's first time in Basildon and it was his first outreach since coming back from Canada, therefore it was his job to start !! Rob began to preach using his new amplifier which is very loud and clear; he was soon approached by a man who said "the ten commandments were great advice for life". However, as Rob unpacked the commandments the Holiness of the Law began to expose the mans sin to which he began to get angry and walk away.
As Rob continued more people gathered to listen and/or heckle. A young couple came up and began to ask "why we were forcing our beliefs on people" etc. Rob dealt with the arguments very succinctly and soon the girl confessed to being a pagan. The conversation was cut short by a lesbian yelling that we were "judgmental", to which Rob turned the accusation against her and asked her not to judge us either. Another lady asked about Bible translations and was thankful for the answers she received. A girl named Sarah who grew up in a Christian home also had a number of good questions and the Gospel was preached to her. Also a grandmother and her daughter and grandchildren came up and asked "the problem of evil question" relating it to specific events in their life. Rob responded with empathy and decorum to which the grandmother kind of appreciated his response but her daughter was not interested.
We eventually encountered a "christian" lady who said we were not preaching the Gospel but preaching condemnation. She was very frustrating and tried to stand infront of Rob and tell everyone that "God loves everybody and has wonderful plan for thier life". It made me question if she had ever read Ps 5:5, 11:5, Mal 1:3, Rom 9:13 etc or the large number of passages that explain about Gods hatred and anger towards human wickedness and sin. Anyways, Rob countered these foolish objections by reading John 3.16-20 which makes clear that God's love is for those who repent and those who do not repent are already condemed.
During the course of the afternoon many hecklers came and went but the content of the message had obviously offended the lesbian, because she called the police. Soon enough the police arrived and questioned the crowd of angry bystanders who were telling all sorts of lies about us. The police did not ask Rob to stop preaching but waited till he had finished before questioning him. Eventually the police arrested Rob for breaching Section 5 of the Public Order Act claiming that he had used language that "caused harassment, alarm or distress". Rob was taken to the Basildon Police Station and I called the Christian Legal Center for help. Later that evening the CLC lawyer arrived and had an interview with Rob and the Police and all trumped up charges were dropped with no further action to be taken !!
Rob was vindicated but felt vilified. It does remind me of when Jesus tells His disciples "Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you" Matt 5:11-12. By Gods grace we live to preach another day, Praise be to God!! SDG.
We encountered a few very open people to the gospel on our outreach to the Gold Coast.
Watch the following two minute video battle log report from the night:
Praise be to the Lord of all!
Ryan, Justin and I met this morning and after traveling to Nambour we set straight to prayer.
During the week, since our last outreach, we all received $550 fines in the mail, for preaching with an amplifier. Over the last few weeks we have been meeting in Nambour under the peaceful assembly act. This act allows anyone to hold a public meeting on public land. The act also provides provision for the use an amplifier, so we know we are acting lawfully. We of course have all opted to attend magistrates court instead of paying the fine.
So we set to prayer and prayed particularly for the council officers. We prayed that the Lord would give them an understanding of the local laws, and also that He would open their ears and soften their hearts to the gospel of our Lord and Saviour.
Following our time of prayer we took it in turns to preach and gave out tracts. Many people stopped to listen to the preaching and also to engage us in conversations. We met many who openly rejected Christ, but a few people today embraced the gospel and gave professions of faith. It always is a great privilege to see someone convicted by the Holy Spirit, to be repentant and to put their trust in Christ.
Ryan had an interesting conversation with a man claiming to be a Jehovah's witness. Ryan soon released that this man was not completely following the watchtowers teachings and set about answering his questions and exposing his lack of understanding with the bible, you could see the man was thinking and not just rejecting the scripture. He said he would read the Bible and think more about it. Please pray that he will come to realise the error of the false teaching he has received and come to repentance and acceptance of Jesus Christ as his only saviour.
I particularly was uplifted today by the amount of Christians that stopped to thank us for sharing the gospel and to encourage us to continue. We are often criticized for sharing our faith openly in public, so it’s always edifying to hear support from our brothers and sisters in Christ. May I encourage Christians everywhere to just give a simple word of encouragement to anyone who stands up to share their faith, as it does uplift spirits and lead us to praise God and thank Him for the privilege of sharing His glorious gospel.
As we approached lunch, we were approached by our local “regular” representative of the council, Matthew Bell. He started by quoting the bible, Romans 13:1-7, which we thought was an interesting approach and very unusual for him. We did explain we were happy to submit to the authorities as we were in fact acting lawfully and in compliance with the laws, however we could not submit to officers who were acting unlawfully by continually stopping a lawful public assembly. He offered us some forms to apply for a public assembly and stated they had never received our application forms. We happily showed him our proof of postage and delivery notifications regarding the said paperwork. He had already been to see the local police Senior Sergeant who had kindly told us he had received our applications a couple weeks previously. It seems that the council had lost our application forms. Thankfully Matthew was able to obtain copies from the very helpful senior sergeant at Nambour Police station and we explained we were happy for him to use those as originals under the circumstances. Many thanks to the senior officer at Nambour police station.
It now appears that Matthew and the council are happy we are acting under the peaceful assembly act, however he stated that they are still unhappy with our use of amplification and also our handing out of Christian gospel tracts. So it seems they don’t understand the application of this law either which again is no surprise. So we will continue to preach and hand out tracts and God willing we will see what happens next.
I think its so important to thank God for our religious freedoms in Australia. I have been preaching the gospel on the Sunshine Coast for some time now with no objections from Police or council, however since we have been preaching in Nambour we have encountered weekly opposition particularly from the local council office. One thing we must bare in mind is that we are not trying to be obstructive or to waste anybody's time. It is still a legal right in Australia for us to meet in public and to practice our religious and political freedoms. I personally feel as Christians we must stand to protect these freedoms as we are called to do so.
We are all commanded to share the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ and this is of utmost importance, but we must also protect our religious freedoms or we will lose them. May I please ask you to pray for the Sunshine Coast team particularly at this time, please pray that we receive the grace, strength and the wisdom we need to serve our Lord and to bring glory to Him.
Despite the responses that we get from people, God's word never returns void, and the gospel is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes.
Watch the following 4 minute video Battle Log report from this Saturday night's outreach:
To God be the glory!
Today I met with Ryan, Justin and Bek at Aussie World and then travelled on to Nambour to share the Gospel. When we arrived we spent time in prayer, thanking God especially for the privilege to be able to preach His glorious gospel to the people of Nambour on such a beautiful day. We prayed especially for wisdom and strength and that the Lord would lead us into many conversations.
I started preaching as soon as we arrived. I could not wait to share the message of salvation through Jesus Christ and Him alone. I read from Acts 17; 22,31. I talked about how God had created our world and everything in it, I told the people God was not unknown but know to all of us, I told them that it was God that had given us the very breath in our lungs and the blood in our veins and our skin which felt the warmth of His sun and eyes that saw His handiwork in the glory of creation. I went on to explain that because we knew God but did not honor Him, we had made idols of ourselves, we put ourselves before our very creator, the living God.
I went on to tell the people that the times of ignorance God had overlooked but now he commanded all people everywhere to repent, because he has fixed a day in which he will judge the world in righteousness, by a man who He appointed, and to give His assurance of this He raised him from the dead. I explained that we had all fallen short of the glory of God, we all deserved Gods wrath and just punishment.
I begged with the people to put their trust in Jesus Christ and to repent. I told them the only way we could stand before a righteous and holy God on Judgement day was to repent and to believe Jesus Christ, to put our trust in Him and Him alone. Only Jesus Christ offers us the free gift of Salvation. I felt so emotional and I thanked God as I finished sharing His Gospel.
I then joined Justin passing out tracts and getting involved in conversations with passers by while Ryan preached. I soon got involved in a conversation with an elderly lady who was lovely to talk to, she seemed a bit shocked as I explained the law, but soon after, made a profession of faith and promised to repent and to live a life pleasing to God. Please pray for Silvia.
Justin was engaged in a marathon conversation with a young lady, they both were sitting on a bench talking as a council officer arrived.
Ryan continued to preach, not at all put off by his presence. It seems the council are still upset that we are using amplification during our authorized public assembly, although it is lawful for us to do so. They are also upset that we are handing out tracts which they believe to be "touting for business". The officer gave me a compliance notice for using an amplifier while I was preaching earlier and one to stop me from handing out Christian tracts. Ryan continued to preach. The officer wanted to stop the preaching and talk to Ryan, the officer really doesn't understand that he is acting unlawfully whist trying to do this, so Ryan continued to preach as under our public assembly he is entitled to do so with out interruption. Because the council officer did not know this law and just thought Ryan was being difficult, he decided to waste the local Police forces resources again.
The police arrived. They talked to me and then stopped Ryan preaching. Ryan also was then given compliance orders by the council officer to stop using amplification and handing out tracts. Justin also received a notice to stop passing out tracts. The compliance orders told us if we continued our activities we will be issued with $550 fines for each individual matter. We again continued for the rest of the afternoon preaching and passing out Christian gospel tracts with no fines being issued or any more visits from police or council.
We did fully expect to be given fines as the council are clearly unfamiliar with our rights to meet under the peaceful assemblies act, to use amplification and to practice our religious and political freedoms in Australia, so it seems we will be accepting fines and going to court if that is their wish. Please pray for the council that they will come to know the truth and also for the rights of Christians to legally share the gospel freely in Australia.
After lunch Justin preached “on the box” or stoop as it was today, followed by myself again. Many people stopped to listen, some would comment positively and some would vocally reject the message. We were greatly encouraged also as several Christians stopped to tell us to keep it up! We all gave out many tracts and got into many conversations, some fruitful and some not.
A few people over the course of the day gave professions of faith and said they would repent and pray for forgiveness. Please pray for them especially, but please also pray for those today that received tracts and heard the gospel, may they come to know our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and put their trust in Him and Him alone.
We really could do with more laborers in Nambour so please consider joining the team, If you could help us we would love to hear from you. Please may I also ask that you pray earnestly that the Lord will provide laborers for the harvest.
There are always interesting characters that you meet out on the street when evangelising, but tonight we had one individual who thought he was an angel.
Take a look at the following 3 minute video from the night:
For our Lord's glory!
Had a good day and early evening out and about in Mooloolaba sharing the gospel. It was very busy today with many people enjoying the fantastic weather. Brad and I met up and following a time of prayer, we set ourselves up on a street corner and started to pass out tracts. I opted firstly for the Stop tracts. I think they are great because many people just automatically stop as they see the stop sign picture. They make getting into conversations very easy.
The first conversation of the day was with a couple of older ladies. One lady was quite bossy and very unreceptive to the gospel, and she seemed very keen to not let me speak and to stop her friend listenening to anything I had to say, when I did have a chance. She believed their was no God and anyone who did believe had been brainwashed. I felt sorry for her friend because every time she tried to ask a question her friend cut her off. I pray someone gets to talk with the questioning lady soon. I didn't get chance to get her name as her friend dragged her off.
The second conversation of the day was with Christine. She was a ex-catholic, and had given up on church long ago. She was convinced she was a good person and was definately going to heaven. We had a great chat and it was my priviledge to share the gospel with her. She was convinced her works would get her to heaven, so using the law I showed her that she was in fact a sinner and had fallen short of the glory of God. She was concerned by this but told me God was all forgiving, but I continued and showed her that a just judge would have to find her guilty and judge her accordingly, a just judge could not just let her go. She was visibly disturbed by this, so I went on to share the good news with her. She seemed relieved and was happy to hear the name of Jesus. I asked her when she would repent and put her trust in Jesus and not in her works. She promised me she would think about it. Please pray for Christine.
The next conversation was with Lloyd. He was older man in his 70's I would think. He said he was very closed to all religion and was happy to quote many atheists and scientists and generally he would close any avenue of conversation. He suggested I didn't use the bible to speak about God. The conversation was long, and in the end I asked him If I could physically prove the existance of God and that the Bible was his word would he believe then. He said no... I asked him if he would let me prove the reliability of the Bible, he again said no. I expressed for a man quoting so many atheits and claiming so called scientific proofs he was very closed to conversation about such things. I left him with the thought that it was in fact God who was in control and it didn't matter which atheist had said what regarding God, the fact remained that we would all face judgement and on that day we would be judged by God's standards and not ours. I explained all liars would find themselves in the lake of fire and no thief would inherit the kingdom of God, but he rejected this. I decided not to give him the good news but to leave him with the fact that he faced Judegement by a God he knew in his heart existed. He suggested I read more scientific research... Please pray for Lloyd.
Later on I met with some of the church I fellowship and evangelise with on Friday evenings. They were baptizing a new convert to the faith called Daniel in the sea. Its was great to see Daniel baptized and hear his profession of faith. Praise God indeed.
We managed to pass out many many tracts and have several good conversations today as well as celebrate Daniels baptism. Many people were closed to the gospel today, but the Lord tells us his word never returns void. Please pray that all that recieved tracts today will read them and all those that heard the message will come to know our Lord and Saviour, and pray some will get baptised on Mooloolaba beach soon....
Daniel being Baptised in the Sea at Mooloolaba.
There were three of us today heading to Nambour and once we met, we spent a good deal of time in prayer, asking that God would allow the gospel to go out today freely in Nambour and that we wouldn't have severe opposition.
The morning started out spectacularly. The first conversation that Kevin and I was with a lady in a wheelchair who said that she goes to a Brethren Church, but it turned out that she was trusting in her good works to get her to Heaven. So we explained how God's standard is perfection, but we do not live up to that at all. We went through some of the commandments with her, showing that she too had sinned against God and therefore was deserving of the punishment of being sent to Hell forever.
We then had the pleasure of telling her the way in which God's justice can be satisfied and she can be let into Heaven, through the work of Jesus on the cross. Jesus has lived a perfect life 2000 years ago, suffered on the cross as the substitute for everyone who believes. For everyone who trusts in Jesus alone for their forgiveness and repents.
This lady seemed to now understand the gospel and said she wants to trust in Jesus from that very moment. Please pray for her.
We were having lots of great conversations, and we spent some time preaching from the step. As midday was approaching, two council workers came up to us saying we can't preach with an amplifier and we can't give gospel tracts out. They hung around for quite a while, while we just went back to witnessing.
Two very high ranking police officers turned up a little while later, the Senior Sergeant in charge of Nambour Police Station and the Inspector for the whole region. They were very friendly people and we had very respectful conversation with them, they mentioned that they've had no complaints about us.
We had been told that the officer in charge had let all his officers know that if anyone makes a complaint that they should let him deal with it and not them. For today we were protected from the police's move-on direction powers because we were there under an authorised public assembly.
The conversation with the police went very well saying they've got no issue with us and they soon left. The council workers, however, warned that we were not allowed to continue preaching with an amplifier on council land or hand out gospel tracts. We explained that we were preaching from private property, not council land, and we were entitled to use amplification even on council land because we are protected under an authorized public assembly. And the tracts we were handing out advertise no business, commercial or trade activity. They threatened to fine us if we continued.
We then went to lunch, came back and continued witnessing. Despite council workers seeing that we were continuing, they did nothing at all to stop us.
Praise be to God that he allows his gospel to continue to be spread. Please pray for the conversion of many of the people we spoke, even the council workers, who got to hear the message as well.
To God be the glory!
Today was a beautiful sunny day for evangelism in Basildon. The team consisted of Josh, Chuck and Myself who was fashionably late to the event... We set up behind the costa coffee store in the open air shopping precinct and prayed. I preached first from John 3.16 - 21 and attempted to show that as sinful people we don't want to come to God because we hate Him and we love our wicked deeds.
A number of people listened and took tracts and a number of Christians were encouraged by the preaching. Chuck preached next and this attracted a number of young people to listen. It also opened an opportunity to speak to a young man who had grown up in a Jehovah witness family.
He was very pleasant to chat with and after we demonstrated from Scripture that Jesus is God we encouraged him to go home and read the Bible by itself and not with the watchtower magazine. Josh preached last and this attracted the interest of a man and woman who were intoxicated.
They asked a number of questions which Josh answered but the man was beginning to disrupt and try and stop Josh speaking. Eventually Josh asked if I would call the police and the man swore a bit more and finally left.
This event did bring a lot more people to the scene to listen to the Gospel!!! Eventually two community officers arrived asking about the intoxicated man incident and a council warden arrived asking if we could "move on".
We were on public land so we have freedom of speech and the particular area we were situated on had the law clearly displayed, which explained that religious services are EXEMPT from noise restrictions!! After the authorities inspected the law, the council warden actually returned and apologized to us which we were very appreciative of!! SDG!!