Tag Archives: God

Day 15: Ricardo Shares about an Afternoon at U of T

Ricardo has been faithfully partnering with us in the work of the Gospel every Thursday this summer. He has been a great encouragement to me. Below he shares about an afternoon he spent with Ewan, spreading the Gospel at U of T.

I started talking to a guy who seemed to be an x-Muslim. He had some issues with how unfair life seems to be. He didn’t let me talk much. He just kept telling me how bad life is and that, while trying to be good, his girlfriend cheated on him. He mentioned that when he was bad, all girls liked him. The conversation continued and I got to speak with him about God.

When I tried to explain the Gospel, he responded, “If I was going to believe in God, I would rather believe in Islam.” I told him that the god of Islam could not be both merciful and just. He kept cutting me off when I tried to speak. Eventually he left because he had to go to an exam. He said he was too upset to hear about God anyhow.

Ewan was busy talking to an Orthodox guy, so I started handing out million dollar bill tracts. When handing the bills to two young guys sitting on a bench, I asked them, “Why would you make it to heaven?” They seemed to know about Christianity. I can’t recall exactly how they answered, but I got to explain the Gospel thoroughly and they seemed to understand!

Afterwards, I approached two women near the subway and asked them the same question. At first, they said something like, “There is no God.” I said, “How else can you explain the harmony of the heavens under about 28 different forces that are so accurately set and necessary for life?” They said they’d rather believe in Buddhism. I questioned the Buddhist goal of achieving various levels of purification to achieve the reward of nothingness (Nirvana). They said that though it is nothing, at the same time, it is everything. Soon afterwards we parted ways. I came back to meet up with Ewan. We were drained, so we prayed and left.

Does God Have Evil in Him?

A couple of weeks ago, my brother and I shared the Gospel with you young skeptic who had a Catholic background. I ran into him again at the bus stops on Saturday (interestingly, bus stop evangelism can turn into a very relational ministry as you meet with and follow up with the same people).

I asked him, “Hey, I remember you – I met you a couple of weeks ago with my brother. What’s your name again?” He said, “X” (I will not use his real name). I said, “So, where did we leave off?” Not answering my question, and with a smirk, he said, “I saw Jesus in my cereal this morning.” I replied, also smiling, “Did he say anything to you?” He responded, “No, but he had a beard and he tasted good.”

There must be some evil in God

Getting more serious, and in a respectful manner, he told me, “Look, I think belief in God is a nice idea and there are some reasons that support it, but it’s not for me.” I said, “Why?” He said, “Well, you (referring to me) said that everyone is made in the image of God. And people have evil desires, therefore that makes God evil. I mean, we have evil desires and if God made us this way, there must be some evil in God.”

I gently told him,”Maybe I was not clear on this last time we talked, but the desire of man has been corrupted. God created everything good, but he created Adam and Eve with a free will. Now they had the potential to choose evil and they did. Do you think that still makes God evil?”

He said, “Yes. He knew it was going to happen and he didn’t prevent it; there must be some evil in him.” A little shocked by the logic of his argument I said, “Okay let me get this straight, you believe that because God created Adam and Eve with a free will that could potentially chose evil, that means that somehow God has evil in him.” He said, “yes.”

I sought to refute his argument

I sought to refute his argument saying that it is necessary for God to create beings with the potential to do evil, IF the created beings truly are to be free. It doesn’t  necessarily follow that God is evil. God could have created something more like robots who could not choose evil. X thought that would be better. Of course, when an argument goes down this track we are dealing with utter arrogance: “I know better than God.”

Whatever the case, I argued: the fact that God created people with a free will, who could choose good or evil, simply means that God created creatures with a free will. It follows that this design is either wise or foolish. But as soon we enter into discussion about God, the Creator, it is unfitting for the creatures to judge him. Job learned this the hard way. God said to him,”Who is this who darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Dress for action like a man; I will question you, and you make it known to me.” (Job 38:2-3). Romans 3:4 – “let God be true and every man a liar.”

The bus came . He had to go. I am so thankful to God for guiding me to X. I was especially encouraged that he had been thinking about our first talk. He recited some of the very truths I taught him before. For example, he said, “we are created in the image of God.”

May God cause his face to shine upon X and may he show him that “God is light, and in him there is no darkness at all” (1 John 1:5). I hope and pray that I see him again.

What’s your hope?

A couple of ladies sat on the bench to wait for the bus. I told them I was from a church just starting up in the area, out talking to people about “Jesus Christ and hope,” and then I asked, “can we chat while you wait?” They looked undecided for a moment, then the one lady pipped up, “I go to a church but I am not sure if it Catholic.” I replied, “I ‘m not out here to tell ya that ya need to go church to work your way up the stairway to heaven.” The other, relieved, said, “I don’t go to church.”

I said, “What’s your ultimate hope in life?” They looked surprised by the question. Silent, I sensed they needed some explanation. I said, “what are you living for?” The one replied, “I don’t know; I don’t really think about that much.” The other agreed, “Ya, I don’t really think about that stuff either.” I responded, “Well maybe it’s time to start.”

“If I could tell you the reason why God created the world, would you want to know?” “Sure,” the one replied. I told them, “In the Scriptures, in the book of Isaiah, we are told that God created the world for his own glory.” It looked as if it was the first time they had ever heard such a concept. With interest and intrigue the one lady said, “What about people? Why do we exist?” I said, “to glorify God.” The response: silence. 

I went on to talk about how we all value many things … be it family, careers, cars, houses, family, sex, career advancement, money, our name … I told them that it’s not wrong to value and enjoy things, for “God is not a cosmic killjoy” but our problem is that “we value created things more than the Creator.” I continued, “The Bible calls that sin.” The bus was coming so I came the copies of The Essential Jesus (Matthias Media), which includes our church contact info.

May the Lord use the truth was spoken to quicken them to seek God that they may find life and live for the One to whom glory is due. May the Lord save them for the praise of His mercy (Rom 15:9).