On the Street, 21st February 2014
Miguel preaches as Amélia hands out leaflets
But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. (1 Corinthians 2:14)
When the team arrived on Market Street we saw some notice boards containing scriptures that we recognised. A fellow evangelist from the Midlands had come up to Manchester in order to preach the Gospel. Anthony has been faithfully preaching on the streets of various cities and has been arrested on numerous occasions because of complaints about the scriptures contained on his boards. On every occasion he has been released without charge or, if his case came to court, was acquitted and compensated for wrongful arrest.
Miguel set about preaching whilst John and Amélia distributed leaflets.
A young man stopped to speak with Amélia. He spent quite some time asking questions and listening. Eventually John came over to help Amélia out. We had met him before and on the previous occasion he mentioned that he had travelled all the way from the Liverpool area just to meet with us. He was asking various questions related to the Bible and, as Amélia replied (and later John) he would take notes. He expressed his gratitude to John because he found that John explained things in a way that he had never heard before.
He spoke of how he had found help through a couple of Catholic Charismatics who he believed were “born again”. John asked him upon what basis he believed that they were “born again”? It was because they had helped him with “inner healing” and that it was obvious that they loved Jesus. John explained that to be born again means to be born of the Holy Spirit. The work of the Holy Spirit is to lead people into the truth:
Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. (John 16:13)
John affirmed that any one who was truly born again and led by the Spirit of God could not remain in the Roman Catholic Church. The Roman Catholic Church taught and practised things contrary to the plain teaching of the Bible, and no one who was truly born of God could believe and practice Roman Catholicism.
John watched as he wrote these things down. John could discern that he was trying to understand and learn about Christ intellectually, that for him knowing God was through the stimulus of being with people who had what he understood to be spiritual insight. John explained that we do not come to know God through mysticism and through head knowledge. By now John was quite moved with compassion for this young man and explained to him that in order to understand he needed Christ in his life. Many people mistakenly believe that it is Christianity that people need to find out about, this is why there are so many courses and programmes all designed with this one purpose in mind–to promote Christianity. John explained to him that it was not Christianity that he needed, it was Christ that he needed.
The questions that we may have all find their answer in Christ, for He is the “way, the truth and the life.” So that knowing Christ we then know the Father.
Eventually he he said that he had heard enough and that he would go away and think about what John had said. Jesus spoke once to a man that showed great insight into the truth and told him:
Thou art not far from the kingdom of God. (Mark 12:34)
Let us pray for him that, as Paul prayed for those in Ephesus:
For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.
Anthony shared with Miguel some very disturbing news. Anthony will stand with those that preach the Gospel on the streets. Here in Manchester there is a small group that usually preach during the week and Anthony sometimes stands with them. One of these is a local pastor who we are both acquainted with. This man knows that Anthony has been a friend to us for some time. On our websites we declare that we are friends of Israel and have an image of the Israeli flag. He challenged Anthony about this and Anthony explained to him that God had not yet finished with the Jews (in accordance with Romans Chapters 10 & 11). The pastor declared that Anthony believed a false Gospel, that God had done with the Jews and that as far as he was concerned the Jews were just excrement!
Needless to say we were appalled to hear such virulent anti-Semitism coming from a man who claims to be a Pastor of a church!
There is a notion amongst many Christians that the Church now replaces Israel in God’s scheme of things. However whenever we read about Israel in the New Testament the writers always refer to Israel as being the Jews and never the church. Paul even goes as far as to declare:
For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins. As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers’ sakes. For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance. (Romans 11:25-29)
There is a growing mood of anti-Semitism that has been growing across the world. This week marks the 75th anniversary of Kristallnacht, the series of coordinated attacks against Jews throughout Germany and parts of Austria which was the ominous prelude to the mass murder of much of European Jewry. Jörg Ziercke, the President of Germany’s Federal Criminal Police Office, reported that “2 or 3 violent antisemitic attacks take place in Germany each day.”
But what is worse is that this tide of irrational hatred towards the Jews has now got a foothold in the Protestant Evangelical churches!
Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed. (Genesis 12:1-3)
- Posted in: Uncategorized