Category Archives: Helping Other Churches

A Great Friday Morning with Luis: The Gospel Goes Forth

I was a blessed man this morning. I was delighted to have fellowship in the Gospel of Christ with my dear brother Luis.  Originally from Columbia, he is a member of Church Iglesia Bautista Castellana (Keele and Dundas). He is currently working four days a week and has Fridays off (so we could go out!). A relatively new Christian, he wanted me to go out with him to help him learn about street evangelism (not that I have all the answers . . . but, he is humble enough to learn from even me). His church has recently started an English ministry (basically a young English congregation within a Spanish church) and really wants this ministry (church) to faithfully spread the Gospel in the church neighbourhood. He passionately wants the Lord to save all kinds of peoples and to bring them into his fold to live for His glory. He wants to lead by example and set the tone, not only for a Gospel loving and Gospel believing church, but ALSO, for a Gospel spreading church (meaning orally speaking the Gospel to people). As the Word increased in Acts, may it increase in the Keele-Dundas region!

Rejection

We had great fellowship over the Word (2 Cor 2.12-6.13) and in prayer. Eventually, we hit the streets. We went to the corner and tried talking to a young man. But, he did not want to talk with us. He told us that he was a thief and that as God forgave that man on the cross, so he was forgiven. He told us that as long as you are sincerely sorry for the bad you have done, and ask God for forgiveness, you are forgiven. I wanted to reason with him and tell him what the Bible says about these things, but he wanted none of it.

Handing out a French Tract

We moved on and hit the bus stops at Keele and Dundas. We met a man who was French and did not speak English – I think he was a tourist in Toronto. Thank you to Nick Hill – I had a 2 Ways to Live tract in French. I was able to give him one. He was very thankful for it.

I Guess this is Why We are Not to Talk about Religion and Politics

We walked down Dundas and met a lady having a smoke outside of her workplace. We approached her giving her a penny with the 10 commandments. She gave it back, but we had a good little talk. She said she was Anglican but had not been to church in years.

I asked her about death, “What do you believe will happen to you?” She said, “I’ll go into the ground and that’s it.” I told her that God has spoken on what happens at death. I told her how Jesus came and taught very clearly on heaven and hell.

Referring to Matthew 25 I told her, “The righteous will go into eternal life but the unrighteous into everlasting punishment.” She responded, “We”ll very few people are righteous; basically your telling me that 95 % of the people are going downstairs?” I said, “Actually, no one is righteous.” She replied, “No, there are some good people, not many, but there are some.” I said, “Well, here, let me read to you a few verses from the Bible about this.” With a smile, she said, “Oh my goodness, I haven’t read the Bible in years.” I said, “Well, this will be good for you – it is just a couple of sentences – I will read from Romans 3:10.”

I read Romans 3:10-12. She was listening with curious attentiveness.  In response to the Word of God in 3.12a, she said, “people aren’t worthless.” I said, “Well, you are right, but you are must understand what the Scriptures say about man elsewhere. In other portions of the Bible we learn that man is precious, for he is created in the image of God.” She said, “So there are contradictions.” I said, “No, there are what are called apparent contradictions.” In the spirit of ‘that’s enough for me,’ she replied, “Oh, the differences and disagreements – I guess this is why we are not to talk about religion and politics. I better go back into work.”

I said, “I have one thing for you to consider before you go, please just think about this one thing: People could gossip about you and say different things, but if I want to know the truth, I will come to you. I can find out the truth. You can find out the truth about the way of life and how to be made acceptable to God for Judgment Day. Jesus came and spoke about these things. Do you have a Bible?” She said, “yes.” I continued, “I encourage you to read a Gospel, John is a good one to read. You can find out what Jesus said about these things. You do not know me. You just met me – what if I was lying to you. You need to read Jesus and find out for yourself. But thank you for taking the time to let us speak with you. Thank you.” “Your welcome” she replied. That was it. May the Lord work in her heart – may He cause her to care about her soul and may He breathe life into her.

An Elderly Muslim Man

Later on we met another man out on the street. He was sitting on the ledge of a huge flower pot. He was an elderly Muslim who was friendly to Christians. He had strong and impassioned opinions about many things, some that I fully agree with . . . others that I do not (for they were contrary to Scripture). We talked for a very very long time – it was a great chat (more listening on my side, but that is great . . . listening is very important). We were able to share some Scripture with him (Mark 14.60-64, for he does not think Jesus is the Son of God or equal with God; and Ephesians 2.8-9, for he thought salvation is by works). Furthermore, we were able to clearly explain the Gospel to him – our sin and guilt, the substitutionary life and death on our behalf and his resurrection! He told us to come back and see him again (right there – where he works). May the Lord cause His Word to stay in his heart and work in conjunction with the Spirit to make him born again.

A message for those who read this post:

What a great Friday morning! If you read this post, first I say, “thank you.” Now I say this: “Believe the Gospel afresh today and in due time Preach it!” May the Lord help you. If you are a Christian, remember this: you do not justify yourself in your evangelism (nor are you less acceptable due to faithlessness in evangelism). The Father accepts you. Your standing with God has been sealed by the work of Christ, and by God’s grace, your corresponding faith in Christ. Thus, in light of that FREE GOSPEL what great reason to spread it!!!!! What a Gospel! Behold your God! What Glory! What a Gospel! What good reason do we have to be silent? Lord help us.

My Testimony: Finding True Joy

My friend, Jacob, is currently leading a vacation Bible school for the Armenian Evangelical Brotherhood Church in Scarborough. He asked me to come a share my testimony on Friday with the kids (a mixture of teens and junior highers) and to share about the Gospel.

I shared how I never really had much joy in Jesus and in the Gospel for most of my life. Though I grew up in a Christian home, I found church to be boring for the most part. I did not really want to go. However, I went, and I had a sort of faith in the Gospel, at least to a certain degree, but it was a type of faith that did not produce much joy in Christ. I simply did not have much delight in the Gospel nor in the person of Jesus. Eventually I sought joy in sports, girls, alcohol, drugs, popularity and success.

I shared with the kids that, like Israel, I had “committed two evils.” I had forsaken the Lord, who is the fountain of living waters; and secondly, I had hewed out broken cisterns for myself, cisterns which hold no water. I taught them that the way to true joy and life is found in Jesus Christ and in his Gospel.

We looked at Galatians 3:1-2. We learned that the way to receive the Spirit is by faith in the Gospel (not just initially, but also in an ongoing manner). Thereafter, we saw that one of the fruits of the Spirit is joy. Accordingly, the way to get more joy is not by working harder, but by ongoing faith in the Gospel. The Spirit works in conjunction with such faith and produces this joy. Thus, faith in Christ and his Gospel is the way to real delight! I pleaded with them to go to Christ for real life, joy and pleasure.

Afterwards,  I talked to one of the teens for a while (i think he is in grade 10). I asked him if he were to die today whether he thought God would accept him or reject him. He said, “He would reject me.” I said, “why do you think he’d reject you?” He said, “Because I do not have real joy in Christ or in the Gospel.” The context of our conversation indicated that he meant, “I do not know of this joy at all; thus, I do not think that I have saving faith.”  I asked him if he was afraid, or concerned or nervous about this. He said that he was concerned about his current state. He seemed to be genuinely sobered.

I tried to explain the Gospel to him and I felt like I was just confusing him. He may have benefited from something I said, but I felt as though I was scatter-brained and speaking without simplicity and clarity. I was frustrated with my own lack of simplicity. I was stuggling to know exactly what to say.

Accordingly, I went to John 6:28-29 and read: “what must we do, to be doing the works of God?” Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him who he has sent.” Letting Scripture speak for itself seemed to be the most effective thing I did. He seemed to get these words. I told him that Jesus is alive and reigning and that he ought to seek Christ and to call out to him. I took him to Mark 1:15. We considered Jesus’ command for all to “repent and believe in the gospel.” Thus, turning to Christ is not simply an option, but it is the command of the King of kings.

He seemed truly sobered. Jacob has already had good talks with him. Jacob will continue to work with him and preach Christ to him. Please pray for him and please pray for Jacob; he has asked for prayer, that he (and the other workers) would be more and more loving and Christ-like as they work with the youth. Next week they plan to have around 50-60 some odd kids at their vacation Bible school!

I am thanking the Lord for the opportunity to serve the Armenian Evangelical Brotherhood Church. There were 11 kids there, most of whom come from Coptic or Catholic homes.