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All articles in category Evangelistic

January 2018
Evangelistic

The terrible, terrific moment

Roger Ellsworth shares a story from My coffee-cup meditations about William R. Newell. The teenage Newell was so rebellious that he brought continual heartache to his parents. His father, a pastor, pleaded with R. A. Torrey, president of Moody Bible College, to accept his son as a student. Torrey refused. The father continued to plead, and Torrey finally agreed. While he was at Moody, Newell encountered the Word of God in a new and powerful way and became a Christian. What did God’s Word do for him? He gives us the answer in his well-known hymn, ‘At Calvary’: ‘By God’s Word at last my sin...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

How one Iranian became a Christian

Q. Mark [name changed], what was your life like before you were a Christian? Mark: Actually, my life had a lot of ups and downs, but any happiness was very short-lived. I always believed in God. Looking back, I can see that I was a sinner — and still am. One summer, I was very happy because I had managed to obtain an Iranian passport. I travelled to the UK and really enjoyed my time here. But soon afterwards my sister died. Two years later, my mother died; and, two years after that, my father died. I wasn’t the same after that; I began to realise that...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

We don’t need to guess

News is out that a certain celebrity has come to town. But why has he come? No one is quite sure. So, everyone’s guessing — one suggesting this, another suggesting that — until someone comes up with the really bright idea: ‘Why not just ask him?’ So they do. And he tells them! It’s now Christmas and lots of people are talking about Jesus. How he came from heaven to earth. How he was born in a stable in Bethlehem and laid in a manger. What a very special person he was, God’s own Son. But the big question is this: why did he come?...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

The danger of the manger

Gary Clayton examines some of the supposed ‘magic’ of Christmas. A friend once produced a thought-provoking Christmas card that showed an illustration of the traditional Christmas tree decked in tinsel and baubles, with presents down below. This was then followed by an image of a mighty wind stripping the tree of its trappings and partially unwrapping the parcels below. The final drawing showed a denuded tree, its branches in the shape of a rugged cross, the gifts beneath now unequivocally revealed as gold, myrrh and frankincense. ‘The true meaning of Christmas: Immanuel, God with us’ was, I think, the simple greeting that followed, along with...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

If I were a wise man…

We don’t know very much about them. Matthew’s is the only Gospel to make mention of them, and they appear and disappear in just twelve verses. But I’ve always had a soft spot for the mystery men from the East. One carol goes like this: ‘We three kings of Orient are, One in a taxi, one in a car, One on a scooter, blowing his hooter, Smoking a big cigar’. That, of course, is the unofficial version; although the real thing isn’t a whole lot more accurate. The Bible nowhere tells us that they were kings, nor even that there were three of them. That’s...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

Just an old book?

The circumstances surrounding someone’s conversion to Christ may vary widely, but it seems to me that there are five elements common to all: conviction of sin; repentance; hearing (or reading) the gospel; the exercise of faith in the finished work of Christ; and a subsequent, evident change in lifestyle. My own conversion occurred in 1973, when I was 29 years of age. I had at that time been married for five years. I had no religious convictions, nor any history of church attendance, except for a handful of visits to Sunday school as a child. My career as an environmental health officer in local government...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

Changed from the inside out

What was your life like before you were a Christian? About the age of four, I made a ‘confession of faith’ in Jesus Christ and was baptised. ‘So that was that’, I used to think growing up. I said the right things and prayed every so often. But as I grew up, there were thoughts that nagged my mind. While it was true, I thought, I wasn’t going to hell, why had I ever been going there in the first place? Surely, even though I was a sinner like everyone else, I wasn’t a really bad one. Surely there were lots of people worse than me?...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

A good grief — a personal testimony

Death is the one thing that all people in this world have in common. Death is inevitable for us all, irrespective of our status. And death is the one subject we all try to avoid, but eventually have to face head-on. Only a Christian can look death in the face with a smile. But, watching a loved one gradually leave this world is never easy. Hospice In April 2017, I visited a number of times, along with my wife, the hospice where my dear mother-in-law, Jean, was to spend her last few days. She had been diagnosed with cancer, and, just nine and a half...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

Called to be a soldier of Jesus Christ

As a boy growing up in Gorslas, many of the people in the area had been changed by God during the 1904 Revival. They were different to the ordinary religious man; their faith and witness was vibrant and they had such zeal for God. All they would talk about was the Lord. This had a profound and, at times, a fearful effect on me. In my late teens I experienced a strong conviction of sin, so I cried to God for salvation and I believed that Jesus Christ had died for my sins. However, I wasn’t wholly committed to Christ. I only gave part of...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

Lasting happiness

Unlike alcohol, success or sport, turning to Jesus has brought me true and lasting happiness. I didn’t have an easy time when I was growing up. My dad died when I was four and, when I was a teenager, I became seriously ill with pneumonia and pleurisy. I was so desperate I asked God for help, but when I recovered I soon forgot all about God. I later got a grant to study medicine at Liverpool University, but in my fifth year I had a motorcycle accident, which shattered my leg and confined me to hospital — but as a patient, not a student. I just didn’t have the money to re-do the...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

War and peace

When Britain declared war on Germany in August 1914, there were many who said, ‘It’ll all be over by Christmas!’ People thought it was just a small, local difficulty, as though they were saying, ‘It won’t need a large army to sort it out’. How wrong they were! What began in the balmy days of summer was a global combat, dragged out over four weary years, costing the lives of millions of young men and changing the political landscape of the nations. But the whole of mankind is involved in a much more serious conflict, a long war against God. This battle began a very...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

A certain destiny

Since her arrival at Number 10 last year, press reports have revealed that way back in the early 1990s Theresa May’s father-in-law predicted she would one day become Prime Minister. She wasn’t even an MP at the time, though she had already embarked on a political career and was a rising star in the London Borough of Merton. Future hopes Although it is not recorded whether he expected her premiership to be long or short, John May’s hunch about his daughter-in-law’s future proved correct. But doubtless many more have entertained hopes and dreams about the success of their own nearest and dearest that have not...

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