This past weekend we were once more back on the street to proclaim the gospel. We arrived at Tooting Broadway a little before 7:30 pm and set about handing out tracts. I did not intend on preaching as I knew I would be preaching later at Leicester Square and also the following morning at Tooting Broadway. We spent about forty minutes or so handing out tracts and talking to people. I managed to talk with three young teenage girls who stopped to talk when I handed them each a million pound note gospel tract.
As we got talking I shared the gospel with them as I would any other. However, it became apparent that they were Christians and that they were on the way to a prayer meeting! I don't make it a habit of not trusting in people but I have seen all too often how quickly someone can say they are a Christian when in reality that is not the case. I asked them if they spoke to their friends about Jesus and they said that they did. I emphasised to them the importance of speaking about sin, righteousness and judgement and that the gospel makes it clear we are to repent of our sin and turn in faith towards the Lord. They seemed a little surprised by this and as I continued to share with them the essentials of true biblical evangelism I could see that they had not received solid teaching concerning the gospel. This is so typical of churches today.
Before they left they each received an in-depth gospel tract. I handed to the girl who had been the most responsive a Ten Commandment coin gospel tract, which has the Ten Commandments on one side and the gospel on the other, and told her to use it to start a conversation with one of her friends. She seemed quite excited by this. Just then their bus arrived and so we said our goodbyes. I received a hug for my efforts but the greatest reward will be to see them all in heaven one day. Please pray that will be the case.
We arrived at Leicester Square at about 8:40 pm. Carl was there to meet us; he's been a real blessing. We had a new face join us as well. My friend Dale from Workington had contacted me earlier in the week to put me in contact with Virgil, a friend of his now living in London. After some brief introductions we made our way over to where we had preached the previous Friday. The artists that line the railing had again said they preferred we did not preach in their "spot." Carl was first up to preach and he preached for about 15 minutes. He is still developing as an open-air preacher and I am sure that the Lord will use him as he continues to step out and preach. He does not use a loud voice when he preaches but he still attracts listeners and a few hecklers too! I have learnt that you learn the most through doing. After he finished I stepped up to preach. It was not long before a sizeable crowd formed. My first heckler was a man named Richard. When he heard me speak of intelligent design and how it proves there is an intelligent Creator, he scoffed. He worked up the crowd to say that the amazing complexity of the human body is not evidence of an awesome Creator. The people cheered in his favour, however it was not long before he had moved on and the people were still standing there listening. A question was asked concerning the crusades, during which time many "Christians" did terrible things in the name of Christianity. I told the crowd that a true Christian is known by his/her fruit and that if someone claims to be a Christian then his/her life must be in accord with what the Bible says. I was really encouraged as I could see this impacted the people's understanding of what a true Christian is.
It wasn't long after this that I was heckled by some young girls who insisted that there was no evidence for God. They were quite forceful in their arguments and appeared even angry. I found out later when talking with the others that they'd had a Christian background and that they had been let down by God in some way. This is tragic. It is quite likely that they came to Christ expecting a bed of roses only to find that this is not the case. This is the terrible result of modern evangelism that seeks to water down the message in such a way that you no longer hear words like sin, righteousness and judgment. The call to repent is rarely heard these days, instead we are told to simply "ask Jesus into our heart." Christ came preaching repentance. So did John the Baptist. So did the apostle Paul. Study church history and you will see it there too. Much of the church today seems to have discovered some new way to preach the gospel. Yet in the book of Galatians we read, "I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel- not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed." (Galatians 1:6-9).
As I was answering their questions and objections a man dressed in civilian clothing approached me and showed me his badge. It was clear he was a police officer. He wanted a word with me and so I stepped down from my ladder to talk with him. His objection to what we were doing centred on the fact that we had accumulated quite a large crowd (to my knowledge probably the biggest I have had so far) and since Leicester Square is a "hotspot" for pick-pocketing crime it makes their job harder to have to deal with a crowd of this size. He also mentioned that we were blocking the thoroughfare with the crowd that we had gathered. I asked him if there was not some other place that we could go and he said no. He was making it appear that he was trying to be helpful but in reality he wanted us gone. I found out later that Leicester Square is his spot and so clearly it was more a case that we were an inconvenience than anything else. He did not say that we were breaking the law and actually said he was not telling us to move but was rather asking us to do so. I had with me an article written by The Christian Institute, which details the law related to street evangelism. I regret that I did not use this to my advantage. I must admit that my experience with the police is not that great and so I was rather accommodating to their wishes. I did protest, but thinking back on it now I could have defended our position much more strongly. The issue that concerned me the most was that it seemed to be coming across that we would not be allowed back to Leicester Square ever again. This is something I am in the process of looking into. I have contacted The Christian Institute, who are helping me in this regard. This Friday we will be trying a different venue, but only because we want to clarify the legalities and the rights that we have. I had been preaching for about 27 minutes before I was stopped so I praise God for the time that He gave us. It was just passed 10:30pm when we were stopped and as we leave around 11:00 pm anyway we decided to spend the next half hour or so handing out tracts and talking with people. The events with the police had shaken us up a little and we were not quite ourselves afterwards. This was somewhat new territory for us and one which we knew would come eventually. We need to learn from this so that we will handle it better in the future. Please pray that the Lord would help us and that He would give us much wisdom.
Saturday came around and it was back to Tooting Broadway. Antonio met myself and Phil at 11:30 am and not long after Barney (another member from my church) joined us as well. We began by handing out gospel tracts and speaking with people first. I approached a young girl who had dyed pink hair as well as a great amount of makeup on. As we got talking she mentioned that she was homosexual. Her name is Kitty and she is just 16. She was quite willing to talk and said that she enjoyed conversations regarding God and life after death. She mentioned that she did not see her homosexuality as a sin and that she was simply born that way. This can be a challenging objection to have to deal with. We need to emphasise that God has created both male and female and that the Bible does not allow for homosexuality. This can be a sensitive topic and we need to be careful when talking with people who are engaged in this kind of sin. This does not mean that we agree with them that their homosexuality is not a sin. The Bible clearly says it is very much a sin in God's eyes. However, so is lying, theft, blasphemy and idolatry. I spoke to her of how we can know that there is a God, that the Bible is a true and trustworthy book (click on this link to see why) and that if the Bible is indeed true then we all have to give an account of ourselves before Him one day. I was able to share the gospel with her and leave her with a couple of tracts. Please pray for her. Another chap I got to speak with was Zeff. It was not a long chat but I was able to share the whole counsel of God with him. He thanked me but I sensed that he was simply being polite. I stressed to him the importance of thinking through what I had said. He left with a gospel tract and so do pray for him.
After we had all handed out a good number of tracts and spoken with quite a few people I stood up to preach open-air. Some people did stop to listen; this prompted Barney to whizz about handing out tracts to them. Towards the end of my message I was approached by a man named Keith. He began by heckling me and speaking against the veracity of Scripture as well as the Christian faith itself. After a little while I came down off my ladder and spoke with him in a more personal way. It turned out that he does believe in God and it was clear that he is searching. He told me that he was an alcoholic and that he struggled to give it up in his own strength. He asked God to help but the help never seemed to come. I had a real heart for this guy. I told him that in our own strength we will fail but if we put our trust in Christ we can overcome.
I shared the complete gospel with him and urged him to turn from his own strength. He still seemed convinced that he could save himself if he just tried hard enough. I helped him to understand that salvation is a free gift. If we try and "buy" the gift then it is no longer a gift. When we try and earn our salvation we are in affect trying to buy the free gift that God offers to all who repent of their sin and trust in Him alone. This really helped Keith and he appeared most grateful as he left. I invited him to church and he said that he would come, unfortunately he did not come that Sunday and so it is my hope and prayer that I will see him again, hopefully at church! Praise God, we'd had another great weekend of ministry!
Soli Deo Gloria!
Leicester Square & Tooting Broadway (9th -10th May)
Last night I joined up once more with my good friend Phil for another evening of street evangelism. Unfortunately events of the day meant that we arrived too late at Tooting Broadway to spend any time there ministering. We hopped on the tube and headed for Leicester Square. Arriving just after 9pm I was excited to see the throngs of people who were out to party and have a good time. Leicester Square really is a great spot for street evangelism.
We made our way over to the spot that we have been using for the last three weeks or so - opposite the Empire Theatre against the railings. Artists line these railings doing portraits of people and caricatures. Up until now we have simply slotted in between them when a space has opened up. Last night we attempted to do the same, except this time a very disgruntled artist came up to us pleading with us not to do so, since that would cause a crowd to form, which would affect his business. This seemed ridiculous to me. I explained to him that we did not wish in any way to affect his business and that it was our right to stand there. I also explained that we have had no problems with the authorities in this regard. Just then a police officer headed our way so our artist friend approached the officer to complain. "Oh brother!" was my first thought. I went over to the officer and introduced myself. I presented our case and explained that we had not had problems before. The officer actually stood up for us and said there was nothing stopping us from preaching. However there was nothing that was going to deter this artist and he persisted to such an extent that the officer asked whether there was not some other area that we could use. We agreed and moved to another part of the square. I was feeling frustrated and annoyed and I confess that it did have me a little rattled. Still, I realised that we needed to learn how to handle these sorts of things, as we know that resistance will come.
My brother James arrived soon after and so we got ready to begin ministering the Word. Carl, who had also come through to join us, was still in a one-to-one conversation that he had started before we had arrived. I let him know where we would be so that he could join us when he had finished. Heading back to our "new spot" I stood up to preach. At first only a handful of people stopped to listen but as time went on more and more people began to take interest. After about ten minutes or so a group of young Muslim men entered into the fray. I knew things would now get interesting. As is the common practise the Muslims fired at me the typical questions. They were aggressive and forceful and very domineering. This is to be expected. It can be frustrating as they don't allow you to even get a word in when they are like this. However one young man, who called himself Adam (I discovered later that this was not his name) was far more reasonable than his friends and repeatedly told them to show me some respect and allow me to speak. I was grateful for this and I knew that God was working. It does seem that the majority of the Muslims I meet are simply out to attack Christianity in an aggressive way. Yet there are those who are more reasonable and willing to listen. Adam was one of those. (Let me point that we too want to attack Islam. The point I am making is the aggressiveness of their approach and the fact that they refuse to be reasonable. They ask questions but really their minds are already made up. Please pray that there will be those like Adam that will listen).
The majority of their questions and objections were aimed at attacking Christianity; again, this is common practise. I will say this. For all their efforts to shout me down they succeeded in bringing in a greater crowd. I was greatly encouraged by this and turned to preaching the gospel more earnestly to the crowd.
After preaching and answering questions and objections for close on an hour I came down off my step ladder. It was funny because Adam wanted me to carry on preaching! I told him that my voice would never be able to handle it. At this particular point I noticed that a young man was motioning for my attention. As soon as he started talking I noticed straight away he was from Australia. He seemed quite keen on talking with me. I discovered that he was most displeased with what I had been talking about. He said that he did not discount that there is a God but did not see how I could say that the Christian God of the Bible was the one true God. He felt that me saying Jesus is the way, the truth and the life is discriminatory. I tried desperately to reason with this young man but he seemed to have only one agenda. He was quite strong in his approach and I felt that his mind was already made up before he even asked a question. It was clear that he had some sort of Christian background, since he spoke of a verse in Leviticus that says a man who commits a homosexual act should be killed. I pointed out to him that the Old Covenant has been replaced by the New Covenant. This led to him saying, along with the Muslims who were standing near by, that the Bible had been changed and altered. I struggle to understand how they come to that conclusion. Jeremiah prophesied that God would make a new covenant with the house of Israel, a new covenant that surpasses and is far greater than the old covenant. (Jeremiah 31:31-33) God chose to do this, not man. It is recorded in the Word for us. Nothing has been changed by man, man has simply written down what God has directed him to write down.
As time moved on I got to speak with another Muslim from the group. He was quite a young man and one who had been quite vocal when I had been preaching. Now that it was just the two of us things were a little different. I told him that God's standards are infinitely higher than man's standards. This he agreed with. I told him that God is just. This he agreed with. I then said that if a human judge could not let a criminal (who was clearly guilty of a serious crime) go free, but rather must execute justice, how much more must God, who is the Just Judge of the entire universe?? For a brief moment I could see on his face acknowledgment that what I was saying is true. I could see that he clearly understood what I was saying. I think he realised that I had exposed the holes in his argument because he came back at me again with an explanation of how Allah is just yet at the same time is willing let the guilty go free. You see, if God is just He must punish sin. The Bible tells us that, "He who justifies the wicked and he who condemns the righteous, both of them alike are an abomination to the LORD." (Proverbs 17:15). Without a sinless, perfect substitute to die in our place, we would all end up in hell. Since we are guilty God cannot justify us, unless our guilt is passed to another. And this is why the Christian rejoices. "For He (God) made Him (Jesus) who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." (2 Corinthians 5:21). This is the genius of God. In Christ both His wrath and His grace are satisfied. God's wrath is poured out, but on Jesus, not us. God's mercy is extended to those He wishes to save. He has demonstrated both His justice and His mercy. Both are satisfied.
There was another chap who had been listening quite intently whilst I had been preaching. His name was Paal. As we got talking I discovered that he had issues with the fact that if all we need to do is believe in Jesus and in so doing earn eternal life, then that means we can sit back and sin knowing that we're saved anyway. I explained to him that when the Christian repents and puts their trust in Jesus, they are made a new creation. God changes the disposition of their heart. The sin they once loved they now hate. Christians still sin, but there is now a wrestle that takes place inside them because of the Holy Spirit that has filled them. He seemed to understand this. I gave him a gospel tract and my contact details and he left shaking my hand. Please pray for Paal!
It was now gone 11:00pm and so it was time to head on home. My brother James was just finishing up a conversation with a couple of people and Phil was handing out tracts. Carl had already left a little earlier. As the three of us headed for the tube station we praised God for using us once more.
It was just myself and Antonio today at Tooting Broadway. Antonio is still a young Christian and so to see him on the street each week is a real blessing. He is not quite at the place where he is approaching people to talk with them but he is faithfully handing out tracts to the passerby's. When we arrived this morning a pastor from an Evangelical Anglican church, along with people from his church, were at the tube station ministering the gospel. I had met them once before and it was good to see them again. When we arrived the pastor was preaching and the members of his church were handing out tracts so we went about handing out tracts as well. I got talking with a young man named Nester. He listened as I shared the whole counsel of God with him. He understood what I was saying yet did not seem moved at all by the gospel. As he left he handed back the tract that I had given him. It is heart breaking to see this but God's Word does not return void and I can only pray that the Holy Spirit will work to convict him of his sin so that he will turn in repentance and faith to the Lord. I spoke briefly with the pastor from the Anglican Church before he left. He couldn't really stop to chat but we exchanged contact details and I hope to speak with Him some more. I stood up to preach and a few people did stop to pay attention to what I had to say. It is a completely different setting to Leicester Square but even if only a few people stop to hear the Word I will still rejoice in the Lord.
Once more a great weekend of ministry. As long as we have breath we must go on preaching God's Word.
Soli Deo Gloria!
Credit: Images from www.Wikapedia.org
On Friday evening myself and Philip met up with Antonio at Tooting Broadway to once more proclaim the gospel. We arrived just after 7pm. I had in mind to do a short open-air preach simply because my voice has been feeling a little strained of late. We opened in prayer and set about handing out tracts and speaking to people one-to-one. The first person I approached resulted in immense joy for all of us. A young girl was walking my way so I approached her with a tract in my hand. Being as friendly as I could and smiling broadly I asked her if she'd ever seen a comic before with the words "Are you a good person?" on the front of it. She smiled back and said no, she had not.
Forty minutes later we were still talking. I shared the whole counsel of God with her. We spoke of sin, righteousness, judgment and the amazing grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. As I was reasoning with her I could tell that the message was starting to have an impact. I asked if she'd ever heard anything like this before and she said no. I then asked if what I had shared with her made sense and she said, "It does now that you have explained it to me."
Finally I asked her, "Would you like to surrender your life to Christ?" She responded with a yes and so I explained to her that she needed to turn in prayer to God and surrender her life. I must stress that upon hearing from her that she wanted to surrender her life to Christ I went over the message with her one more time.
I wanted to make sure that she had weighed up the cost and that she knew what it was she was about to do. So often we hurry a person into the kingdom, not realising that they haven't considered the cost, the result of which ends in them making a superficial commitment to the Lord. We cannot know for sure but we owe to the person to trust them. The genuineness of their commitment will be tested and ultimately it is only the person and the Lord who truly know whether or not they have completely surrendered their life.
I did not lead her in "the sinners prayer," I simply guided her as to what she should pray and then allowed her to pray privately by herself. It was wonderful to see her turn to the Lord. Before she left I gave her my contact details and invited her to my church. She said that she would not be able to make it that Sunday but would be able to make it the following Sunday. Please pray for her and that she would be able to make it to church.
About 8:10pm we hopped on the tube and headed up to Leicester Square. Antonio said his goodbyes before we left. After arriving at about 8:40pm we entered the Square and headed to our usual spot. Carl was running a bit late so we decided to wait for him. My brother James joined us also and arrived within 10 minutes of our arrival. I decided to try a different part of the Square just to see what sort of response we would get.
As we moved over the area we noticed that there were some Christians who were singing songs and praying. They had obviously come out to do some evangelism of their own. An idea quickly came to me and so I went over to talk to them. I told them what it is we do and that very shortly I would be preaching open-air. I then asked if they would mind being a "rent a crowd" for me, which meant I started preaching with an already formed crowd. They agreed, which was a real blessing. At this point Carl had still not arrived but we knew he was on his way so I stood up to preach. Within minutes my "rent a crowd" had grown to about 30 people.
It was great! Many people got to hear the gospel. I was being heckled from all angles at one point but that was fine because I was able to answer their objections, which is awesome because it educated the crowd concerning the truth. Over the years I have read many books and educated myself with the help of some awesome resources (LivingWaters, Answers in Genesis, Way of the Master, etc.)
As I continued to preach two young men became more and more animated in their objections, saying that Christianity is just another religion that cannot be proven and that evolution holds all the answers. It was not difficult to counter what they were saying; the only difficulty was that they expressed themselves in a rather domineering way, coming up really close to where I was standing. You have to learn to handle these situations in a rather forthright fashion, insisting that they stand back and give you room.
Eventually I came down and continued to dialogue with my two main hecklers. Their names were Paul and Kelsey. It was quite evident that they had both been indoctrinated from the world system. They kept making assertions as if they were factual and so I had to keep pointing out to them that what they were saying is not true, and I did this but pointing them to the facts. I took them to the book of Job, for instance, to show them that dinosaurs are mentioned in the Bible (Job 40:15-24). Although they were both quite resilient in their views, they had a friend (I believe his name was Fabien, but don't quote me on that!) who was more open and willing to listen.
There were times when he asked both Paul and Kelsey to keep quiet so that he could hear what I had to say. When I spoke with him on a one-to-one basis I could tell that although he was open there was still a fair amount of worldly knowledge built into him that caused him to conclude by saying, "We could sit here forever and a day discussing this and never come a conclusion as to who is right and who is wrong." I had with me a little booklet written by Ken Ham (Answer in Genesis) that is entitled "Is there really a God?" and so I gave it to him as we parted company. We can use the law to bring conviction of sin but we still reason with a person's mind as well.
Before we left Leicester Square Carl stood up to preach. He did not preach for long but did a fine job in pleading with the people earnestly that they should repent and turn to Jesus in faith. It was now getting late and so we said goodbye to the Christian friends we had made and headed for the train. The gospel had been preached, many conversations had transpired and many tracts had been passed out. Praise God!
Saturday morning rolled around and it was time to once more head to Tooting Broadway tube station to preach the gospel. The weather was quite miserable and so there were not many people out and about. Phil was of course with me and we were joined by Antonio and Andrew, both of which are from my church. We arrived at 11:30 and spent our time speaking to the people who were there and of course handing out tracts.
I preached open-air but did not get many people stopping to listen. Even so the Word was preached and for that I rejoice. We'd had a wonderful week of ministry.
Soli Deo Gloria!
Before I write about our weekend of ministry that has just finished let me point you to something else first. Last weekend I travelled up to Carlisle with my brother James and Carl to join with other Christians for a day of outreach. We travelled up Friday evening and stayed over in Sheffield with our good friends David and Anna Gee. Early Saturday morning we drove up to Carlisle. While I haven't had the chance to write about the day Dave Gee has done a great job in unfolding the events of the day for us. Click on this link to read his report.
Friday evening saw us head up to Leicester Square in order to preach the gospel to the great multitude of people who are out "to have a good time." Unfortunately we did not get the opportunity to first go to Tooting Broadway, as I had some errands to set about doing that afternoon. Myself and Phil arrived at Leicester Square at about 8:45pm. My brother James was due to meet us there and he arrived just after 9pm. After opening in prayer I stood up to preach. I started by talking about why we are here on planet earth. The people who are at Leicester Square on a Friday night are out to have a good time and rarely will they ask themselves the question, "Why am I here?" So I started by prompting the question to those passing by, "What is our purpose for being here?" I answered with a solid reformed response: "We are here to glorify God and enjoy Him forever." This allowed me to then talk about why we are to glorify God and why we are to enjoy Him forever. At this point a sizeable crowd had formed and I could see that some people were listening intently to what I was saying. After I finished preaching we continued to engage people in one-to-one conversations. By the end of the evening we had handed out over 100 tracts. We could not stay late as both myself and Philip needed to be up early the next morning to go to a men's breakfast at my church. We left about 10:30pm.
Saturday morning came round and I was joined by Antonio and Lyudmila at Tooting Broadway. Philip had to help at the coffee shop at our church so it was just the three of us. I arrived at 11:30am but Antonio and Lyudmila were late in arriving so I went about handing out tracts. After they arrived I stood up to preach the gospel. Not many people stopped to listen but I noticed in particular someone who seemed quite interested. His name was Zeeshan and he told me that he is Muslim. We had a good chat and he mentioned that he would like to talk some more so I gave him my details. I have noticed that it is rare that someone will get back in contact even though they say they will, which is disappointing. Still, we must trust God that they will remember what they heard. Interestingly Zeeshan gave me his mobile number and so I will be contacting him soon to see if he would like to talk some more. This is something that I am going to try to do more often.
Lyudmila and Antonio are learning a lot and it is great to see them out each week. This Saturday I will begin a course called The Way of the Master Basic Training Course and will be leading them through it for the next 8 weeks. I am really excited about this and looking forward to seeing them grow during these next coming weeks.
Soli Deo Gloria!
This past weekend saw both myself and Philip, along with some new faces, back on the street to spread the gospel through public proclamation, one-to-one witnessing and the handing out of tracts. On Friday night we were joined by Joanna and Carl, from two different respective churches, as well as my brother James, Antonio and his wife Ludmiller, and Keith from my church.
We began as usual outside Tooting Broadway tube station just after 6pm. It was bitterly cold but we set about handing out tracts and approaching people to witness to them. I stood up to preach open-air and managed to draw in a small crowd. I did a call out to a young man and took him through the law. He left when I started to preach the gospel but there were some other people who were stood nearby so praise God that people did get to hear the message. We continued to talk one-to-one with people and hand out some more tracts after I finished preaching. At 8pm we got ready to leave Tooting Broadway and head on up to Leicester Square. We were due to meet Carl there at 8.30pm. I was greatly encouraged to see people from my church join us and also it was wonderful that Joanna had joined us too. I was particularly looking forward to seeing Carl, especially as we had only met once before. Antonio and Ludmiller were not able to come on up with us but we were very grateful that they had supported us thus far.
We arrived at Leicester Square just after 8.30pm. Carl was running a bit late so we went ahead and started ministering. A crowd formed and I did a call out to a man named Kazaar. He maintained that he would be guilty by God's standard but that it did not concern him that he could go to hell if he were to die. I told him about the terrors of hell and spoke about the certainty of God's judgment. As I was using an illustration to explain how Jesus has paid the fine for sinners so that through repentance and faith they can be saved, a young man began to heckle me and say that God is "here for everybody." I asked him to explain for me where that is found in the Bible. In return he asked me where my courtroom analogy is found in the Bible so I stressed for him that it was just an analogy and that it shows the loving-kindness of God back dropped against His divine wrath.
After I finished preaching up stood Carl! It was only his third or fourth preach and I could see that he was a little nervous. However he preached for well over 10 minutes and used his testimony to show how God had changed him and of course ultimately save him. After he finished we continued to do some more one-to-one's and hand out tracts. I found Kazaar and spoke to him some more. He told me that he was a Muslim and that Allah is his mercy would most likely save him, although he could not be sure. I showed him why he needs a Saviour and why Jesus is that Saviour. He was one of the most open Muslims I have spoke with but still you could tell that there was a lot to break through. He took a tract and I pray that God will continue to speak to him through the seed that was sown.
I had in mind to do another open-air but Carl had beaten me to it. He was up on the ladder once more and back in full swing. He needs to learn to project his voice a bit more but it was great to see his enthusiasm and desire. It wasn't long before he was being heckled and then surrounded by a crowd of Muslims. This is their strategy. They come in close and force you to back down. Afterwards I told Carl that he needs to tell them to stand back and that if they do not he will move to another spot. This is a constant struggle now and it seems that the Muslims of London are determined to stand against Christianity. Please pray that God would give us wisdom.
Before we left to go home I noticed that my brother James and Joanna were both in one-to-one conversation. James was talking with a liberal Muslim girl who professed that she did not live out her faith but had a great many objections towards Christianity. It became clear towards the end that she was not sorry for her sins and that she preferred to point the finger at other rather than admit her own guilt. Joanna was having a rather torrid time with a man who had heckled me earlier and was insistent that he explain to us the objections found in the Bible. It was difficult to debate with him as he was very argumentative and clearly had his mind already made up. This is street evangelism. This is what we encounter open-air. It can be tough but God's Word never returns void; onward we go! We left after 11:30pm, cold and tired but feeling privileged that God had used us. We had to get home to get some sleep as it was back to Tooting Broadway the next morning.
We arrived back at Tooting Broadway at 11:30. My brother James and Philip were with me and Joanna joined us just after 12pm. David Radcliffe, a chap from my church, also joined us as the afternoon wore on. It was very cold but there were still people about so I stood up and preached law and grace to the people. At one point it started to snow, that was very surreal! After I finished preaching we went about approaching people who had heard me preach. I got talking with a middle-aged man (his name has escaped me and I'm disappointed with that but the Lord knows his name so please pray for him) who was very nice to talk to. We had a good chat about a number of things. He mentioned that he had believed in God at one point but now science had swung his mind. Interestingly he had a decent knowledge of Scripture and Christianity and we got speaking about the authenticity and veracity of Scripture. I explained to him that we have more manuscripts that any other ancient book and that the time frame between the date they were written and the time that Jesus lived (talking of course of New Testament manuscripts) is shorter than any other we have of any other ancient person. He was somewhat impressed with this and gave me his ear on a number of things. Before he left I gave him my card and told him that he is free to email me any time. He said that he would and so I do hope and pray that I hear from him again.
All in all a great weekend of ministry. We want to see fruit but we live in a time when man is very much enamoured with his sin. The church has done little to soften men's hearts with the power of the gospel and so we speak with people of hard hearts who love their sin. Preachers of years ago broke hard hearts with the law of God and healed broken hearts with the gospel of God's grace. Oh for that kind of preaching once again!!
Soli Deo Gloria!!