Grace and Truth

…all the words of this life…


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Responding to the Voice of God

One of the very first things the Lord taught me when I started street-preaching was that I am not responsible for how people respond. My work was to simply speak forth the Word

Sorry....I just had to...

Sorry….I just had to…

of God.  He showed me that I am not to consider how or even if the message will be received, I am simply to speak it forth in obedience.

If people respond well, praise God. If they don’t, praise God anyway.

I have seen many different responses to the preaching of the gospel. Sometimes there is conviction by the Spirit and sometimes reception to the Word of God. But most often it is this:

  • Demonic manifestations, including cursing Jesus, foul/sexual language and personal abuse
  • Shaking heads sadly
  • Turning off the PA or trying to steal my microphone from my hand
  • Laughing and mocking
  • Hardness of heart, those who are completely unreceptive/unresponsive to the gospel

The Parable of the Sower (Matthew 13) demonstrates that there is a variety of different grounds of reception to the word of God. Whilst many different responses are possible, the one I dislike encountering the most is the last one. I would much rather encounter demonic manifestations or outright aggression to the Word of God than the completely unresponsive, hard-hearted receptions I get from some. Why? Because with the aggressive/demonic I know something of the Word has penetrated somewhere and it is bringing about a response.

But the proud, unreceptive person is just that – unreceptive. Unable and unwilling to receive of God. They are able to stand right in front of me while I am preaching about hell or about the amazing love of God and send a text message. Nothing penetrates.

Whilst I must keep going and not let that deter me from my mission, there is One who cares deeply how His Word and how His prophetic voice are received. That is, of course, God.

Standing right between the parable of the Sower and Christ’s explanation of that parable is this passage:

listening“Though seeing, they do not see; though hearing, they do not hear or understand.In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah: “‘You will be ever hearing but never understanding;    you will be ever seeing but never perceiving. For this people’s heart has become calloused;  they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes,   hear with their ears,  understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.’

But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear.” Matthew 13:13-16

And so I have to ask: Do our eyes see? Do our ears hear?

You see, each of those responses listed above from unregenerate sinners, I have also encountered in the church (excluding the cursing of Christ).

Beloved, this should not be so.

“He who has ears to hear, let him hear what the Spirit is saying to the Churches.”

Are we able to receive of God? Am I able to?

Oh yes I know we are Christians. I know we know lots about the Bible and about God. But are we able to actually receive from Him?

Have we learnt so much over the years, and been to church for so long that we now know it all? Has the earth of our heart become stony again?

Can the seed of the word of God still penetrate? Or is it only possible when we hear a “positive” word that is complimentary or affirming to our flesh in some way?

Can we be reproved? Or are we immediately on the defense? What if God wanted to correct us and what if He sent an “unlikely” prophet to do it? Would we be able to receive from Him?

Or would we reject the prophet and his words?

God takes very seriously the reception or rejection of His prophetic Word and there are consequences to both responses.

 

Next post….

  • the consequences of the reception and the rejection of the prophetic word
  • Testing the spirits
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Street Preaching and Chalk

11219593_10152932989958261_4896805221278485865_nToday we used chalk to write on the ground as well as the typical preaching with the PA, handing out tracts and one-on-one conversations.11188158_10152932989968261_1177099243858141187_n

I think the chalk worked really well.  I found the most effective place was at the bottom of the stairs leading into the train station.  People coming down the stairs actually stopped, turned around and read the words.  People coming up the stairs read them on their way up.  I was surprised by how many people actually stop to read chalk messages on the ground.  I guess it’s just natural curiosity.

11011290_10152932989913261_8490564730433265542_nIt’s also a valuable evangelism method because after you leave the area, the words still remain.

Has anyone else ever tried this method?  What else has worked for you?

God bless,

Belinda


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Today’s Street Preaching 21st November

Today I was so blessed because a large group of Asian teenage students bourbonstreet1came along when H was preaching.  They stopped and were listening. I went over to them with tracts and little books containing the gospel of John.  They were so hungry for the gospel.  They clamoured for tracts.  When one saw I had little books as well, she cried out “I want a little book!”  Well that set off the rest of the group who all also didn’t want to miss out and clamoured for the “little books”.  They were so pleased and thanked me profusely.

It is rare to see that kind of hunger here in Australia.  Oh God have mercy on us.

The Holy Spirit gave us Judges 7:13, 14 before we went in to preach today:

And when Gideon was come, behold, there was a man that told a dream unto his fellow, and said, Behold, I dreamed a dream, and, lo, a cake of barley bread tumbled into the host of Midian, and came unto a tent, and smote it that it fell, and overturned it, that the tent lay along. 14And his fellow answered and said, This is nothing else save the sword of Gideon the son of Joash, a man of Israel: for into his hand hath God delivered Midian, and all the host.”

Just as God sent Gideon into battle the enemy with only 300 men, so God today sent 3 women in to the enemy’s territory.

When we first arrived there was a strange feel to the place.  I suddenly felt very ill with nerves.  My stomach came down with a bad case of butterflies looking at all the people.

The best antidote for fear and nerves I have found is to get on with preaching immediately.  If I procrastinate I can lose my nerve and sink into a mire of fear.

The funny thing is that as soon as I begin to preach the fear always leaves immediately.  The strange feel to the place also left too.

I want to encourage you that our individual testimony of God’s grace and power in our life is powerful.  H was sharing her testimony when a young man walked past.  He kept stopping and looking back at her as she spoke about how God had changed her.  Eventually he came back and asked me for a tract.

We each have a testimony to share with someone – and that is sufficient to be able to bring the gospel to someone who is lost.

These words from Wesley’s hymn “Hark the Herald Angels Sing” were on my heart all day today:

Hark the herald angels sing:

Glory to the new born King

Peace on earth and mercy mild

God and sinner reconciled!”

That’s what it’s all about.

God bless you!

 

 

 

 

 


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The Anointing, the Devil and Preaching

Sorry....I just had to...

Sorry….I just had to…

Friday morning 3 others and I went into the city to preach.

Beforehand in prayer the Holy Spirit gave us Joshua 2:24:

“And they said to Joshua, ‘Truly the Lord has delivered all the land into our hands, for indeed all the inhabitants of the country are fainthearted because of us.”

Something the Body of Christ needs to know:

The demons indeed are fainthearted when the gospel of Jesus Christ is preached.

CT Studd said “If you don’t want the Devil to hit you, hit him first, and hit him with all your might, so that he may be too crippled to hit back. ‘Preach the Word’ is the rod the Devil fears and hates.”

Why? Because Jesus Christ has “disarmed the principalities and powers and made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in the cross.” Colossians 2:15

When the Word is preached, it is the proclamation of the public spectacle over all the powers of hell, over all the powers of sin and darkness, which was accomplished by Christ at the cross.open air

But.  And there is a “but”… preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ needs to be done in the power of the Holy Spirit.  The preacher needs the anointing of God.

Why?

Because it is essential to be able to preach to the “back of things” as T Austin Sparks would say.

We are not preaching merely at men and women.  We are preaching to the spiritual realm at the back of all things.  I would say that primarily we are preaching to the unseen realm.  And this requires power – the supernatural power of the Holy Ghost.

The greatest anointing I have experienced whilst street preaching is when I knew I was preaching directly to Jesus Himself.  That is when the anointing fell and folks were literally stopped in their tracks.

I have also known when I am preaching to the unseen powers of darkness.  This was in the Battle with the Hare krishnas.  I knew that the victory of Jesus Christ was to be enforced over the principalities and powers.  They fought and they tried, but Christ has “already lead captivity captive” and is already the victor.

When we are under the anointing of God we are standing in Christ’s stead, we are His ambassadors.

“Now, then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you, be reconciled to God.” 2 Corinthians 5:20

If we don’t have the anointing we are working merely in the flesh, the physical realm.  We may have the correct doctrine and the right words but we are merely skimming the surface of things because the unseen realm is left undisturbed. As a consequence nothing of much value is accomplished.

How is that ice-addict to be freed from the grip of Satan?  How will that young woman bound in witchcraft be made to see when the god of this age has blinded her eyes?  The devil has to be dealt with first.  Proclaim the victory of the cross of Christ, in the power of the Spirit, and his grip will be loosened enough for them to be able to hear the gospel.

With the anointing anything is possible.  By the power of the Spirit when the gospel is proclaimed, the devil trembles and knows he is defeated already.

“But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” Acts 1:8

May God bless you!

 


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Oppression, Anointing and Street-Preaching

 

I was under massive oppression all day today.  I felt like crying, like giving up, I felt IMG_2504condemned, useless, hopeless.

And so I almost didn’t go into the city to street-preach tonight.

But when my wonderful husband said “I think “someone” is trying to stop you going in there tonight…”  my will-power kicked in.  Why should I be trampled down when my Jesus says “Behold I give you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions”?

So in I went.

And boy, I am glad I did.

There is a Jehovah’s Witness Convention on in the city this weekend and those JW’s were everywhere tonight!  I know this because they wore purple badges.

cropped-misc-0515.jpgAnyhow, there was a real anointing on the preaching tonight.  People stopped and listened. Lots of people.  Lots of teenagers, lots of Muslims.  Lots of conversations were had. Praise God.

The JW’s didn’t stop though.  They kept walking in their well-trained, don’t-make-eye-contact way.  They wagged their heads at me, particularly when I quoted John 1:14 and proclaimed that Jesus IS God.  They didn’t like it when I said that as Jesus hung on the CROSS the people wagged their heads at Him.

Someone else actually paid me $5 as I preached.  That’s a first. I am not actually sure whether that’s a good or a bad thing.  Anyway I gave the money away because it just felt too weird.

Again someone tried to unplug me as I preached, but I caught the young man and gave him a good scolding as only a mother can do.

By the third time I preached the devil tried to stop me.  An angry atheist was sent to my left belting out antagonisms and an unstable person to my right continually tapping me on the shoulder saying “Do you have a minute?…Do you have a minute?”

My voice is hoarse now, my body shaky.

My oppression – ALL GONE!

 

Would you do service for Jesus your King?

There’s POWER in the blood! Power in the Blood!

 

Amen. Praise the Lord.

Bless you


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Tonight’s Street Preaching 29 Aug ’14

flinders stThe last time I went in to preach in the city’s streets was in the battle with the Hares some weeks back.  That ended up taking a huge toll on me and I was sick for some time afterwards…

The good news is that they apparently haven’t been back to the area since.

“But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place.” 2 Corinthians 2:14

Something else I discovered tonight: a large Muslim contingent has set up two tables in the city’s most popular mall.  There they distribute Islamic literature and even preach on microphones to the public.

Of course, they are entitled to do so, just as we are.

I find this disturbing though.  Why?  Because it is really hard to getLR preaching Christians out there to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ, yet the Muslims are seemingly doing it for Allah.

I suppose that may be because as Christians we are partakers of God’s wondrous grace.  We certainly don’t have to street-preach or to share the gospel to be saved.  We don’t have to work for salvation at all. No, it is all the work of God. And praise Him for that! However, I do wonder why it is so hard to get Christians out there when we have the greatest love story in the world to share (not to mention the Great Commission Christ gave us and the Holy Spirit to help us).

Christian brothers and sisters – we need to pray that God sends out more labourers into the harvest!  We really do.  Whilst most of the church is sitting in their comfy chairs watching tv or arguing amongst themselves over doctrinal issues, the devil is working diligently against the gospel of Christ.

I am not trying to put condemnation on anyone. It is hard to get out there.  Believe me, I know.  I also know that no-one wants to hear this….  But I think it necessary to speak the truth of what I see.

Brothers and sisters we urgently need two things :

  • intercessors, and
  • those willing to go.  We need those like Isaiah who will say:

“Here I am Lord; send me.”woman preacher

 

 


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Street Preaching Last Night – An Epic Battle

soldiersThe Hare Krishna’s came back as we were preaching.  Two weeks ago, as I wrote about here, they came and did their dance to Krishna but left after only a few minutes.

Well last night they came as I began to preach.  But this time they stayed.

This time they had an amp with them and sang songs and chanted mantras to Krishna whilst they danced.  It was loud.

I kept preaching though.  I kept on, like last time:

“Jesus is the Way, the Truth, the LIfe. No one comes to the Father but by Him…”  etc

“There is no other Name under heaven by which humankind can be saved than the Name of Jesus…”

On they stayed.

On I kept preaching.

“Jesus is Lord.  And at the Name of Jesus every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that He is Lord to the glory of the Father!”

It went on.  Multitudes of people came over to see what was going on. They were fascinated.  It was a battle and everyone knew it.  Many people video-ed all of it on their phones (if you see it on YouTube, let me know!)

10 minutes – I began calling out the words to “Amazing Grace”.

hareThe Hare Krishnas became frenzied. Faster and faster they got, they worked themselves into an ecstatic frenzy. They reminded me of the prophets of Baal as they cried out to their “god” to answer them on Mount Carmel.

 

15 minutes…

My voice started hurting, my chest was heaving. I prayed to God that He would sustain me to keep going.  I saw why He has prompted me to get fit lately.

I looked into the crowd as I proclaimed that “Jesus is Lord” and there was a gift from God.  A young lady with her hands in the air crying out “Amen! Jesus is Lord!”

She became my lifeline.  I looked to her as it went on.  She encouraged me to keep going.

I didn’t know what else to do.  I lifted my hands in the air and shut my eyes and cried out:

“Jesus, I proclaim that You are Lord over this station!  You are Lord. I praise the Lamb who was slain from the foundation of the world!  I praise you Lord! Hallelujah to the Lamb!”

The Hare Krishna’s left.battle

Praise God.

I kept preaching for another minute, then the gift-from-God young lady came over and asked if she could sing.  She had never sung by herself in a public street before but the presence of God was so strong.

She sung a beautiful song all about Jesus.

Some people from the crowd hung around to talk to some of the guys.

There was a great battle last night, but there was a great victory for the kingdom of God too!

Needless to say, it has taken me all day today to recover…:)

“Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place.” 2 Corinthians 2:14