Thursday afternoon was a wonderful time of gospel ministry out at the bus stops.
For me, the outreach started with a friendly chat with my two JW friends who I often see with their stand at Northlands bus stop. The last time I talked to them, it was declared that we were only to talk about “the weather”. But today, they couldn’t resist and had a go at me (politely) about the trinity. We discussed this for a few minutes, me having the opportunity to touch on the gospel and why Jesus had to be man and God, before parting ways. I continue to pray for the salvation of this lovely couple.
My next encounter was a follow up with a man I first talked to at Eastgate (I can’t remember how long ago). He said he had been reading the tract I gave him. So I asked him a checking question, and sadly his answer was that we needed to “be good” to go to heaven. I was able to explain why that was the wrong answer, but his friend turned up, and he had to leave, so sadly I didn’t get an opportunity to explain the gospel fully. God willing I will see him again - or maybe you will have an opportunity to share with him?
My next conversation was amazing. It was with a deep thinking young man who declared himself to be an Atheist. But he seemed genuinely interested in the truth. The conversation didn’t follow the usual pattern, instead it was driven by his questions. But throughout the conversation I was able to touch on all the key concepts of the gospel.
Half way through the conversation his bus came. He looked up, thought for a second, and then said, it’s ok, I’ll get the next one. How encouraging! At one point he said, “you won’t be able to convince me in ten or twenty minutes”, but by the end of the conversation I could tell he was challenged. I made sure he knew how to get in contact with me if he had further questions. Oh Lord, save him for Your glory!
My next conversation was also amazing. The young man had been involved with talking to the dead, etc. so this time I followed my usual pattern for sharing the gospel. He was deeply challenged to understand the standard for entry to heaven, and he understood the cost of trusting in Jesus. He didn’t see the joy of the gift of Jesus - yet anyway.
We moved to Northlands, and the outreach only got better!
I approached a young man, who was a bit overwhelmed by my deep initial question. He decided he didn’t want to talk about it - which was fine, but he was happy to take a gospel tract.
There was an older lady who had watched this exchange, and I approached her next. It turns out she was a Christian from a sound local church. She was very encouraged by what I was doing - she said she had already received one of our tracts. I was able to encourage her in return.
I had a number of other good gospel conversations - mainly with high school students. I also had a brief follow up opportunity with a lady who first heard about us through a letterbox drop!
But my last three conversations were outstanding.
A young high school student accepted a tract from me and was keen to chat (pictured). He said he had talked to me two years ago, and has seen me around the streets since then. He said the kids at school talk about us - and it’s not very nice what they say. He was intimidated by this, but at the same time he was very open to the gospel.
I took him through the gospel again, and I left him considering the amazing good news, but also the cost - which he has first hand experience of (considering his friends at school). He took a copy of every type of tract I have, plus a New Testament plus Psalms & Proverbs. He said he would start reading it.
While this conversation was happening, I realised that I was speaking directly into a taxi parked on the curb. The driver had the passenger side window wound down and would have heard every word I said.
After finishing with the high school student, I crossed the road and had a wonderful conversation with a Christian - about high school age. He couldn’t clearly articulate the gospel, so I went over it with him - he seemed impacted and appreciative. I started giving him Bible verses to look up, and he pulled out a pen and started writing them on his hand. He seemed very encouraged. Praise God.
I then crossed back over the road to see if I could get a final conversation before heading home, and as I walked past the taxi, the driver who had listened to me earlier, came out of his car to ask for one of my tracts!
He had an eastern religious background (Sikh) and was actually quite resistant, but he said his wife had two people coming to talk about spiritual things. I think he heard me talking about the many Christian cults that teach that good works are required for salvation - and this intrigued him. I also gave him a “Which One?” tract before we parted with a hand shake (pictured - perfect timing Andy!). A very encouraging end to the outreach!
On Saturday, It was our first 3pm - 6pm outreach on this Saturday, there were lots of people in the street than usual. We met at the Starbucks and discussed why we do not use sinner’s prayer and danger that can come with it.
By God’s grace, we had lots of interesting conversations. I met two travellers from Netherlands (Mom and daughter). They were excited as they saw the big flip chart and engaged really well with questions and answers but when I started to share about God’s righteous judgement on sinners, they said “you know what it was really good in the beginning but this part I don’t like it” and they were about to leave so I had to quickly share the gospel with that saying “that is not the end of the story but despite all our sins Christ came and died in our place and rose again., if you repent and truly put your trust in Him Christ Jesus will forgive you” however they shook their head and went away. Please pray for them as you read this battle log.
I met these two boys who were really polite and kind in nature, they generously allowed me to do GOOD PERSON TEST with them. After the gospel was shared I urge them to believe that Jesus Christ died and rose again for their sins. The kid with long hair (as you can see in the photo) responded saying “Yeah I want to believe” but the boy with shorter hair did not give definite answer. Please.. Please earnestly pray for their salvation.
From Dave Knight :-
On Saturday I worked with Liz and went to talk with people sitting on seats along Burke Street Mall outside David Jones, etc. we had a few people state they were not at all interested. However we continued to seek out folk to talk to. The first positive conversation was with a Korean couple. The man’s name was Long and his female partner was named Tu. Long did most of the talking as we asked questions and went through the flip chart with them. We were pleased they showed a lot of interest and by the end of the presentation they happily received more literature. Pray that through the words we shared and their reading of the literature we gave them that God’s Holy Spirit will convince them of their need to accept him into their lives.
We also had a good conversation with a middle aged man named Grant. He was not interested at first but was happy to answer some questions. As we proceeded to ask questions related to the flip chat he became more interested and asked several of his own back to us. Overall the conversations were worthwhile and we were pleased and encouraged to be able to witness for the Lord and share the gospel with those who hadn’t heard it before.
Note: I was with Liz during these times
From Huy Do :-
During this Saturday’s evangelism, something quite amazing happened. A young man about 8-9 years of age by the name of Thomas came and wanted to take the good person test, he was with his parents and was very fervent to take the test, to which I was willing to take him through the test. During the test, as he was going through the commandments, many more people also decided to stop and watch the entire event unfold, it actually drew a crowd. This is a particularly amazing highlight because it magnifies the strength of God in using even the smallest of people to bring about a crowd.
Overall it was a great day !! Soli Deo Gloria who uses unworthy servants like us !!
It was so good to be back to my regular routine after a busy few months that included the NZ Summer Mission and time in Myanmar. I’ve had a wonderful week of rest and am raring to go again!
On Tuesday I was in Riccarton in the late afternoon, and on Wednesday I was in Cathedral Square / Cashel Mall in the early afternoon. Riccarton seemed to have less people around - yet I had an eventful outreach that went thirty minutes over. The city seemed busy when I turned up, but it ended up being a quieter outreach than usual. It’s funny how that happens.
Turning up in my usual spot in Riccarton (cnr. Riccarton and Rotherham, outside the SBS Bank), I set up my flip chart across from a lady sitting in the seats enjoying her break. She was curious as to what it was all about, and so I was straight into my first conversation! Unfortunately she was nearing the end of her break and she had to go before I could really share any of the law and the gospel - but we had a lovely chat touching on the deep questions of life. She took a gospel tract as she left.
Unfortunately, many of my interactions of the day ended up being cut short before I could really share the gospel - but most often, tracts would be taken. God knows. Praying that they will have other opportunities to hear the gospel… maybe from you? :)
But I did get to share the gospel a few times! Like when a sailor from Croatia approached me for directions to a store. After helping him, I was able to politely move the conversation to deeper things. But I did have to go faster than I like as I could tell he needed to get moving. I shared the bad news, and then said there was good news, did he want to hear it? He did, which encouraged me, I gladly shared it. I gave him two tracts, one for him, and one for his captain! :)
Next a guy came along who liked to talk about deep subjects - the conversation was going nicely till his girlfriend turned up - who was nice, but didn’t want to talk about deep subjects! He was sad, and as he was leaving he said if he saw me again he would come and talk further… which isn't as doubtful as it seems, as I had a number of follow ups later...
Next up an Indian guy stopped, he seemed very astute and I could tell this was going to be a great conversation… but sadly, he too needed to move on, he had a bank appointment. But he said he would come back afterwards…
I had two guys stop, one believed in heaven, the other didn’t believe anything happened after death. I started explaining how we can know there must be an afterlife, and the conversation was heating up when two young high school students walked past, stopped, started listening, and then came back to join in the conversation. I wasn’t able to hold the attention of the original two guys, but the conversation with the two high school students was fantastic! In fact, one of them had partly done the flip chart before, but apparently it was interrupted by an angry bald man? They heard the way to heaven, and were able to clearly articulate it back to me with the first checking question - encouraging! I didn’t hold them for much longer as they also needed to go.
Another high school student stopped and heard the gospel, and while this was happening, the Indian guy who had to go to the bank came back! He sat down and waited for me to finish with the high school student.
Once I had done that, I went and sat down with him and we had a long gospel chat (in spite of the rain that had started). He was sharp and understood the analogies quickly - checking questions confirming. I was feeling encouraged that this man may actually want to trust in Christ! He even articulated so. So I moved to the final analogy: the back pack - which explains the cost of following Christ. He got it straight away, and his response made me sad, but also laugh… he wanted to put on the parachute (trust that Jesus had paid his fine), and then put the back pack on his front (the things he knew he would have to give up if he did so). It’s not the first time I’ve had someone say this to me.
In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if there are many people actually trying to do that. They understand the gospel, they want heaven and all its benefits, but they want their sin too. They are trying to hold on to both - but it won’t work. With the gift of faith, comes the gift of repentance. Which will lead us to wanting to obey - no matter the cost.
I tried to work with the Indian guy to get him to realise the folly of what he was thinking. But I watched him harden and start bringing up excuses. I could only shake his hand and let him go. And yet, while he has breath, there is hope. He understood the gospel. May the Spirit of God use that to bring a conviction of sin and change his heart. May he have further opportunities to interact with Christians ready to share the gospel with him again. Are you ready?
Wednesday's outreach ended not so well. A scary guy dressed in black and wearing dark glasses took offense at some of the bad people on the front page of my flip chart. He wasn’t all there and I just wanted him to leave. I had flashbacks to when I had to call the police recently. Remembering Proverbs 9:7 I didn’t intellectually engage him... And, thankfully he, moved on! It was the end of the outreach, and so I packed up and headed to my car. I noticed that he had started talking to the two JWs just down a little further. I gave one of the JWs a knowing look, and she acknowledged it. I’m glad she wasn't on her own.
And I’m glad God is always with us (Matthew 28:20b). Thank you for praying for the Christchurch (NZ) Operation 513 team! Join us! :)
God provided seven (7) team members this morning. Team members included Gary, Robert, James, Richard, Andrew, Pastor Hung and Col. It was great to see the whole team so enthusiastic and becoming more bold every week.
I won't go into detail about the gospel conversations we had, but we give God the glory for allowing us to witness for him. It was a great day and at the end of our time I noticed how the team was so full of joy that they had been witnessing for Christ.
No matter the outcome the team had told many about the love of God through what Jesus had done on the cross, and that's what it's all about hey !! It is so wonderful to look into the face of someone who is hearing the gospel for the first time and see the light in their eyes when they really get it.
Anyway please could you include the Redcliffe team on your prayer lists. We need God or we can do nothing.
If you would like to come out and join us, our next outreach is Saturday 14th March.
On Saturday the weather was beautiful and many people were out in the city compare to last week. As usual we met at the Starbucks shared the word and prayed for the evangelism, we also had few exciting news on new alternating time for Saturday evangelism and monthly practical session training night Praise God for His amazing work and faithfulness towards Melbourne team.
By God's grace we had lots of interesting conversations. Sharindia was the lady that I encounter as I was doing the big flip chart in the city she was from India background, when I asked her if she wanted to take a A GOOD PERSON TEST she generously said 'yes' as I went through the flip chart I realised she had very post modernistic view on morality so basically 'what you feel is right then it is right or if you feel that is bad then it is bad' so in a way it was quite challenging for me to let her admit that she has sinned because GOD is the law giver and He is the ultimate stand of our morality although she stopped me here and there and showed that she does not totally agree with what I was saying she allow me to kept going with the flip chart as she was offended and convicted at the same time.
After I shared the gospel with her she told me that she was hindu and shared her polytheistic view so I had to share the exclusivity of Christ Jesus, Sharindia seems quite uncomfortable and even offended but I could clearly see that she was challenged. Please pray for Sharindia so that she may truly repent and put her trust in Jesus Christ.
Second group of guys that I met were James and Sam. They were funny and honest with there stand point. I think it was James (I can remember the face but.. I am not sure if it was James or Sam but I think it is likely James !) that really show genuine fear as he was realising that he has sinned against King of kings and Lord of lords who showed him so much kindness and goodness. James expression often interchanged between smile and serious face in other hands Sam was quite against the message , opposing it and questioning it but they were genuine question that was driven from genuine curiosity. James and Sam both did not respond in a positive way to the gospel but I earnestly pray that they will repent and put their trust in Jesus Christ.
From Huy Do :-
This Saturday’s evangelism proved to be blessed, as I was preaching, a crowd had gathered and afterwards, a lady stayed to talk with me afterwards. She was asking if it is possible to follow other religions and still go to heaven. I had to graciously and lovingly explain to her the exclusivity of Christ, that if there is any other way to be saved, then God would not have to come down Himself to pay for the sins of those who would believe.
She asked then again if there was any other way if she could just do good deeds to go to heaven, I stated that the scriptures testify of every man’s wickedness, that all of our righteous deeds are like filthy rags because our hearts are filthy and sinful. I explained to her how, similar to a leper corrupting every article of clothing placed upon him, all of her good deeds, because of her sinful deeds will be affected by her sinful heart as well. By the end, she was convicted, she understood her sinfulness and the message preached, I pleaded that she thinks about this.
Another conversation was with what appeared to be a lesbian couple, they were very cordial and attentive to the message of the Gospel. By the end they stated “we know that we are going to hell because we are lesbians”. This very much seems to be my experience in talking to homosexuals, many have come to me and have come to me to say that they know they are going to hell because of their sins, in other words, they know they are condemned already. Regardless, I addressed these 2 ladies, that liars will also have their part in the lake of fire, all have sinned and are under the condemnation of God, that they need to turn to Christ to have life and avoid the judgement that they know full well is coming.
Battle Log For Toowong Village on Feb 25 , 2020 from 1330 to 1500
It was a cloudy day with cool temperature and light breeze best for Street Evangelism. With Johnny overseas till end of April, praise God keeps moving Col, Yueng Hang, Winnie and Hung to serve faithfully every week. Kenneth joined us at 1400 after he finished meeting near by. With the school terms having begun, we have many UQ student to approach. Though the success rate is not high normally below 50% in average, but it still enable most of us to have been fairly occupied for meaningful conversation.
One interesting instances was, God let the same person who claimed himself a Father of the Anglican Church met Hung first then Col later. That person got every understanding of the gospel and salvation right but erroneously thought that repentance is a work that we need to do in order to redeem the salvation prepared by Jesus. This interpretation of repentance of course is in sharp contradiction against the doctrine of salvation by grace through faith as per Eph 2:8-9.
I did not have enough time to correct this erroneous understanding as the bus came. It was funny he came off the bus as he did not have enough credit to buy fare. He had to walk all the way to the shopping centre to recharge his pass. In this connection, he passed by Col and was stopped for a chat. Col told me he got to the exact same spot of taking repentance as an action for some one to do to gain salvation. So these two encounters were no coincidence but a wake up call for that Anglican Father and perhaps for us too to grasp the limited time we have to correct wrong doctrinal interpretation when opportunity turn up. Anyway recap below are the 5 conversations I had.
1) Phoebe an UQ student from Redcliffe who is a local Aussie with some Christian background but is not yet a believer. She stopped happily to chat with me about the gospel and was in no hurry. So I share every ins and outs of the salvation of Christ and why we all even good persons all need Jesus. She was convinced and lament as a human we are all very weak at doing what is taught to be good and more often doing what is not right in flesh. So she admitted every one including herself needs Jesus and is willing to accept Christ. I anyway have given her the contact of power to change to get on her life as a Christian. (20min)
2) Bali an UQ student from Sri Lankan. He was receptive from the outset and is willing to let me share the Gospel. It is a pity the arrival of the bus cut short our conversation. So can only pray for God's follow up work. (5 Min)
3) Farren a father of Anglican Church correctly answered the question about salvation but still considers repentance is an action that we have to do to grasp hold of the free gift of eternal life. I was about to clarify but the bus cut our conversation short. Miraculously God stopped him from riding the bus away as his bus pass ran out of credit. He got off the bus while I was taking note of the conversation with him so when I noticed he was off the bus, but too late to stop him to continue with the unfinished issue. Yet God let Col stopped him as mentioned about. It was a pity their conversation also stop at the point of incorrect understanding of repentance and salvation. We can only trust God has His way after giving Farren these two wake up call. (10Min)
4) Indian aunty and nephew. The man claimed he is perfect and will go to heaven. Initially he did not want to talk but after my insistence the man started responding and got clarified no one is perfect. Pity the bus came and ended our conversation. (10 min)
5) Agatha is an UQ student from local Australia of catholic background. She is a fair dinkum Christian leading a devotional, prayerful and worshipful life style. She is sure about her salvation but has minor struggle to feel imperfect to deserve God’s grace. Happy to have my clarification that though safe as a Christian with 100 % assurance of salvation regaining our lost heavenly citizen identity through Jesus. We are still not perfect but will bound to be transformed back to perfection ultimately. But this won’t affect the saved status gained through Jesus.
She was brought up in Catholic Christian background but encountered some bad experience and developed some mental illness issues. It was the deep encounter and experience of Jesus salvation that helped her to get out from the bondage of mental illness. She knows God used her to minister to those who have similar issues so she is leading a life with God's mission entrusted on her bringing positive impact to many others. (25min)
What a beautiful day today in the mall. God blessed us so richly! There are always many good things that God blesses us with but today it was almost like there was a flag flying in every window telling us of God’s great love.
The first part of the outreach was spent at speaker’s corner reading from the Word of God. Most of my reading came from Acts, Proverbs, and Ecclesiastes. During this time there were many that stopped to listen for a period and many nods and smiles.
It is always a blessing to read out the Word, but today there was a real sense of Grace that the team and I experienced in reading and hearing it. The blessing of Scripture is the twofold action that it has on the human heart. On the one hand there is great blessing to be had from hearing the words of our loving heavenly father that teach the entirety of our being how to live in the blessed way. On the other hand, there is the correction to sinful humanity that confronts us with the lies and sins of the past. It is an irrefutable condemnation of our wrong deeds and a powerful call to repentance and faith. For those who will receive the Word in humble faith and trust, both of these works act to build them up in Godliness and joy.
The other blessing was a long conversation with Mr Se:
He is a visitor to speaker’s corner several times but this is the first time that I have had a decent talk with him. He’s past and the wrongs that filled it are something that he repents of and fights against but as scripture says, “And such WERE some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” 1 Cor 6:11. Praise God the life he once lead is now a witness to many people and he is able to offer grace and kindness to them in the name of Yeshua. As a Messianic Jew, he, Kieron and I all had a lot in common and the conversation flowed well. He encouraged us that there is a lot of common ground that we and others share in Hobart, not least a dislike of the radical progressive agenda’s that abound currently in the news and internet. While the things we talked about were very serious and important, there were lots of jokes and we parted company smiling and laughing. I hope to meet with him again soon.
At the end of the afternoon we finished in prayer thanking God for His love and kindness and the ongoing blessings as we seek to reach out to the city. We prayed that God would stop sin and the Devil from having their way in the hearts of the people of Hobart. We asked that God would convert even the hardest hearts and bring to salvation and joy sinners of every stripe. Finally, we praised God for all that He has done in conquering sin and death.
It is such a joy to serve God who fights on our behalf. Those who oppose the gospel should be intimidated when God’s people pray, for then the Lord of hosts goes into battle for them! How can unrighteous man stand against the maker of the universe and Lord of heaven and earth?
May He conquer all the more!
Here are three videos from the February 2020 Myanmar mission trip:
Sunday’s outreach to Cashel Mall was also the second “Outreach Sunday” for Redemption Church. Over half of the church membership made it to this outreach - including all the Elders and Deacons. It was so wonderful approaching people who had already been approached! Because of this, the gospel was being shared with many. What joy to the heart of an evangelist!
Some were boldly sharing for the first time. Others were gaining confidence, bubbling about the opportunities they had, and wanting to know when the next outreach would be.
The two hours went really fast for me. There were periods where I wasn’t in a gospel conversation - because there were so many evangelists out! But that time was used in encouraging those around me.
Andy excitedly told me about the conversation he had with two ladies. “It was better than any of the conversations in Myanmar” - and that is saying a lot!
I had two stand out conversations. The first was with a young Christian who said he had to be a good person to go to heaven. So I asked if he would like to try the good person test - he was keen.
Eventually he came to realise that his good works would not save him, so I challenged him on what God had done so we could be saved. He then realised the answer was not good works, but Jesus.
In the checking questions, he got the “crossing the road” one wrong - very concerning, so I went back to explain the gospel again, and to clarify that if we are trusting the sacrifice of Jesus to pay the fine for our sins - that includes our future sins as well. I then balanced that with the “fireman” question, explaining that there would be repentance that came with faith, and that would lead to good works - but the good works don’t save us.
I’m not sure how impacted he was by the conversation, but he took a tract, and I encouraged him to talk to his parents and pastor about this - it’s so important.
My second conversation is pictured, it was with two perceptive young people. The lady made a profound statement: “how can God deal with bad stuff and still let people into heaven” (or something like that) - I said, that is a wonderful question, can I explain? They were keen to talk.
But they struggled with the idea that they, themselves, were bad people, I had to spend some time labouring with them in that.
Eventually the lady received a phone call and had to go. But they wanted to hear the good news, so allowed me some time to share - which I did. They took tracts.
So, a very encouraging afternoon of outreach. Thanks to all those from Redemption Church that joined us! Keep it up! Looking forward to having you with us again next month. :)
And to the other churches in Christchurch, a challenge to set up your own monthly outreach. Operation 513 would love to help you with this - feel free to get in touch to discuss.
After two weeks in Myanmar (you can read the reports here) I was back in NZ in time to make it to the Kaikoura A&P Show.
A team of five. Two from Blenheim, one from Nelson, one from North Canterbury, and myself from Christchurch.
I missed this outreach last year, so it was good to be back! It was great to be able to catch up with the other evangelists from up north, and discuss methods with them.
My first conversation of the day was with three teens. My “do you ever think about what happens after you die?” line attracted their attention, and a conversation got started. But two of the three of them quickly became resistant. They didn’t want to stay to hear the gospel, and they didn’t take tracts - except the one who wasn't resistant - I hope he reads it!
The second conversation started really well. The young university student was curious and engaged, and so I took the time he needed to work through the logic of the presentation. He was following along, and I was just moving into sharing the gospel, when his brother stormed past and said “let’s go”. His brother threw away a gospel booklet as he went - he had obviously been talking to one of the other team members. The guy I was talking to complied and that was the end of that. But, he did take a tract as he left, again - I hope he reads it!
Thankfully, I was able to have some conversations where I was actually able to share the gospel!
One was with a lady who was keen to know what the good person test was all about - when I said we were Christians and wanted to share good news, she was happy to try it out. But after I made it through the law, time suddenly became short. She wanted to hear the good news, but wanted me to hurry up. :( She stayed to hear the good news and moved along. But sadly she didn’t seem interested. But God knows.
The best conversation came at the end of the outreach. It was with four young adults. Two were openish and keen to chat, One was resistant but keen to chat, and the last wasn’t keen at all - but ironically piped up at the end to express her disapproval of anyone who disapproves of her ways!
But I was able to explain the law and the gospel, and they all seemed to grasp it very quickly, clearly articulating the way to heaven in the checking questions. The two openish ones took tracts, the other two refused.
After packing up, a song, and prayer, the team split to head back across the country to their homes. Thanks to Scott Cameron from Blenheim for organising this one!
Such an interesting contrast to the many conversations I've been having with open hearted people in Myanmar. Oh God, have mercy on our land!