Saturday, April 05, 2008another night at the zoo...
It rained all afternoon, so I thought our night of street preaching was sunk, but the Lord stopped the rain early enough in the evening for us to head to the marketplace for our usual evangelistic endeavour. I thought the crowds would be small due to the wet and cold weather, but quite the opposite, there were lots of people roaming the streets of the market. Tons of people, mostly up to no good, and for the most part with absolutely no fear of the Lord in them... not even a trace.
Pastor Tim shared a few verses from the Bible with me before we started preaching; they are taken from the Book of Deuteronomy, chapter 29, verse 19-20:
"And it come to pass, when he heareth the words of this curse, that he bless himself in his heart, saying, I shall have peace, though I walk in the imagination of mine heart, to add drunkenness to thirst: the LORD will not spare him, but then the anger of the LORD and his jealousy shall smoke against that man, and all the curses that are written in this book shall lie upon him, and the LORD shall blot out his name from under heaven."
These words were spoken by Moses, right after he had given the Israelites the Law of God. Moses was careful to both warn and encourage his people to obey the Lord by reciting all manner of curses that would befall Israel should she reject the Law of the Lord. That's when he uttered the words cited above. What's interesting about these verses is that it shows how little has changed in 4000 years of human history. Tonight, we preachers went out into the streets and declared the Gospel of the Lord, but by in large, our audience's response was: "we shall have peace, though we walk in the imagination of our hearts." And yet, they have no peace, no satisfaction, and without a doubt, the curse of the Lord rests on them.
Suffice it to say that we did not have a very good night of evangelism. Best thing that happened to me tonight: a young lady, who looked pretty out of it, gave me three individually wrapped candies. She was probably just being nice, but the whole thing just looked a little off, so I don't think I'll be eating any of these candies.
Right after that somewhat bizarre charitable act, we dealt with a street beggar who did everything in his power to justify his sinful life. The man was quite tenacious, but he finally left when he saw that we weren't going to argue his nonsense any longer.
Then there was the whole "good" Muslim fiasco. A young woman sporting a hijab walked by our preaching spot and pastor Tim overheard her cursing and using very foul language. Pastor Tim then called her out as the hypocrite she clearly was. He said:
"What's the point in you wearing that rag on your head? You're just as fouled mouth and wicked as the most faithless wretch in the market! You are a hypocrite, plain and simple."
The young woman continued to curse as she walked away. Now, at this point, I thought it was all over, but two men and a woman walked from across the street to give pastor Tim a piece of their minds. They all proclaimed to be Christians and charged pastor Tim with being unloving and un-Christian. We briefly tried to reason with them.
"The Bible says that the preaching of the Cross is offensive!" pastor Tim said.
They said they agreed with that statement, but still opposed our rebuking the wicked. We got the old Matthew 7:1 argument handed to us (yes, the most misinterpreted Scripture in the Bible), and that's when pastor Tim gave up trying to reason with them; but I persisted.
"I know how you feel," I said. "I was once as you are tonight, thinking that the Christian message must be void of any offense and all judgment. Such a position though is completely unscriptural."
The woman rolled her eyes at me and claimed she knew better than me because, get this now, she was a minister! All I could say was:
And that's when I gave up listening and talking to these three sad souls. Pastor Tim though, upon hearing the woman's confession, took one last shot:
"You claim to be a minister, and that despite the fact the Scriptures clearly forbid women to be a minister. You are an antinomian... you are lawless. There is no reason to believe there is anything Christian about you."
The woman walked then walked away with her two companions, yelling that she was a "Deborah" or an "Esther".
What a mess!
After all this, we were treated to a myriad of curses and mockeries by the general public for much of our remaining time of evangelism. On the upside, we did hand out a fair number of Bible tracts, so who knows what the Lord will do as the night and the weekend progress.
On that note, I'm going to close this post. I'm tired, and kind of depressed. I need to think about something other than the folly of the wicked for awhile. Goodnight dear readers.
Labels: Friday evangelism