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All articles in category Evangelistic

December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

Amazing grace

Being brought up in a Christian family, I listened to the gospel message from a young age. I attended Sunday school, youth groups and hundreds of church services, but I took very little notice of what I was hearing. From my point of view, the truths I heard from God’s Word went in one ear and out of the other, during the first 19 years of my life. I had little interest in listening to what God was saying to me and, during my teenage years, began to have the attitude, ‘I can do what I want and no one can stop me’. I went...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

From prodigal to preacher — the story of Chris Killen

On 25 July 1966, a family in Lisburn, Northern Ireland, welcomed a baby boy. He was their third son, and they had high hopes that he would fulfil their dreams for him and succeed in life. But, by the time he was 15, he had so broken their hearts that they had to ask him to leave home. The other boys had done well in school and in business, but this one was sinking to the depths, a real prodigal. And yet today those parents rejoice in that wayward son. No longer a prodigal, he is a preacher of the gospel and a winner of...

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December 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

Passchendaele — a lesson in mud

The green and pleasant little Belgian village of Passchendaele, just east of Ypres, has given its name to some of the worst horrors of the First World War. It has become synonymous with the mud of Flanders. With the Somme, you think of over-the-top charges and thousands of British soldiers mown down by German machine guns. With Passchendaele, you think of mud. Just over 100 years have elapsed since that particular campaign ended in ignominious abandonment, but the images have entered our collective psyche and are still with us today. Everyone knows that it rained then and that it rained hard. In fact, the rainfall...

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October 2017
Articles > Evangelistic

Justification by faith — a personal testimony

At this 500th anniversary of the Reformation we come to one of the main pillars, if not the pillar, of that Reformation: justification by faith alone, in Christ alone. Martin Luther wrote, ‘When the article of justification has fallen, everything has fallen’. He declared, ‘This is the chief article from which all other doctrines have flowed’. He argued, ‘It alone begets, nourishes, builds, preserves and defends the church of God; and, without it, the church of God cannot exist for one hour’. John Calvin said the same. He called it ‘the hinge on which religion turns’. Justification can be defined as ‘God’s act of remitting...

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April 2017
Evangelistic

The breaking dawn

At sunset and sunrise, a soldier in the field will be told to ‘Stand to’. These periods — just before sunset, when the light is dimming and it’s harder to see the enemy approach; or just before dawn, when the night is at its darkest, until the sun has broken over the horizon and the day’s routine begins — are the two times when a unit in the field is at its most vulnerable. Night vision equipment doesn’t function well and the human eye struggles to adjust to the changes in the light. They are also the most nerve-wracking periods for an infantry soldier. The...

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April 2017
Evangelistic

A matter of life and death

The celebrated Liverpool manager Bill Shankly famously said, ‘Some people believe football is a matter of life and death … it is much, much more important than that’. Such sentiments have been echoed by many an ardent football fan, while they remain a complete mystery to those for whom ‘the beautiful game’ holds no appeal. For some of us it’s football; for others it’s rugby or some other sport; or music, art, politics, or something else. We all have something that we are passionate about, something that at times seems more important than either life or death. And yet, deep down, we know that there...

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Right with God?
March 2017
Evangelistic

Right with God?

In the run-up to Christmas, Marks and Spencer were selling a children’s jumper on which was the slogan, ‘Dear Santa, define good’. The children who wore it probably wouldn’t like God’s definition, or they would never receive any presents. God’s definition not only reveals what is right, but that we are wrong. Christ our righteousness It was awareness of his unrighteousness before God that so troubled Martin Luther 500 years ago. His eventual understanding of how he could be made righteous was to trigger a spiritual reformation across our continent. Without properly understanding ‘righteousness’, reading Matthew 25:31-46, for example, leads to a sense of condemnation....

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December 2016
Evangelistic

A freedom campaigner finds Christ

My name is Julian Sebothane Bahula, and I was born and brought up in Pretoria, South Africa. In the 1960s, I became a professional musician and composer, and was very famous throughout South Africa with the Malombo Jazz Men. In those days, all South Africans were political in one way or another and, while I was in Durban, I worked with a political theatre group called the Tekon Players. We cooperated with Steve Biko, the leader of the Black Consciousness Movement, who addressed the audience at our performances about the cruelty of apartheid. Exile In 1973 I had to leave my country because of my...

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December 2016
Articles > Evangelistic

Wise men from the east

‘Now after Jesus was born, in Bethlehem of Judea, in the days of Herod the king, behold wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, Where is he who has been born King of the Jews?’ (Matthew 2:1-2). The visit of the wise men to worship our Lord at the time of his birth is one of the most fascinating and spiritually meaningful events connected to Jesus’ coming to earth. At this season of the year, there is always a lot of study and a good bit of speculation about the circumstances of these men. Who were they? Where is ‘the east’ that is...

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December 2016
Evangelistic

My wonderful Saviour

Brought up in a Hindu household, I was exposed to rites and rituals of the religion, most of which I failed to grasp the meaning of. But, even as the Bible forbids worshipping and serving the creature rather than the creator, it didn’t sit right with me — I did believe that there was one creator, one God above us all. Somehow I felt incomplete without knowing who ‘it’ was. It was only when I started going to a Methodist secondary school that I finally came to know more about God. It was one particular Easter service that changed my life forever. They talked about...

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December 2016
Evangelistic

How I became a Christian

I was not born a Christian just because I was brought up in this country with its Christian heritage, or because I was baptised and confirmed in the local Anglican church and became a choirboy. My parents had no interest in the Bible, and so there was not a copy to be found in our home. In the church I attended, the main emphasis was on the form of service and the choir. In all this, God seemed very unreal and the Bible merely a religious book. As I grew up, sport and amateur operatics began to take over much of my spare time. For...

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December 2016
Evangelistic

More than words

For the Christian, carol singing should be about more than hitting the right notes, Simoney Kyriakou explains. Carols by candlelight, Michaelmas music, Christmas carol service, nine lessons and carols: whatever we call it, this is the one event nearly every Christian denomination spends a lot of time, money and dedication in preparing. Each year, teams and individuals get ready for this seasonal event, whether putting together beautiful flower displays, decorating the church hall, organising refreshments, compiling posters and promotional material, and teaching the children to smile when they sing, ‘Oh now carry me to Bethlehem’, instead of looking like rabbits caught in the pastor’s headlights....

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