On October 7th, the attacks of Hamas on defenseless Israelis shocked the world. I recently wrote an article, “Condemning The Evil on October 7th,” and said, “…there was no justification for the direct and intentional murder of the Israeli civilians. To murder unarmed men and women pleading for their lives to be spared is detestable. To burn them alive, while they are attempting to find safety is unconscionable. To decapitate the heads of infants is abominable.” Proverbs 6:16-18 states how God hates “…hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil…” (Image by Securityweek.com)
As the war continues, let us pray earnestly for an end to the terrorism on Israel. Let us pray for the salvation of the Jews in the Holy Land, the Arabs in Palestine and for the body of Christ to be at work bringing God’s saving power in the midst of the darkness.
The day after the Hamas attack, we had an Israel trip informational Zoom meeting already scheduled. With the war on people’s minds, the organizers of the trip, Dwight and Anita Widaman, addressed the situation. They had just ended a group video call with the Israeli Ambassador. Additionally, they sent out a statement to all those who have committed to go on the November 2024 trip, and those who are still considering it. In that email they said, “With our November tour more than a year away, we are almost 100% confident it will not be affected by the current situation. We continue to take reservations and the tour is about 1/3 full.” So despite the concerning daily news, we are a long ways from our trip date, so plans are still moving full steam ahead.
You can read their full statement, including information about discussions they have had with some members of the Israeli government, on our website. Click here.
Since August we have held four informational meetings for our 2024 Great Awakenings Israel Tour. To date, God has provided 12 people who have committed to go, leaving 28 more spots open for the trip. Our meetings have included one for Kenyans and East Africans. What a blessing it would be to have both Americans and Africans travel to Israel together.
Our next informational meeting will be Sunday, November 19, 3:30-5:00 p.m. If you are interested in being a part, contact us and we will send you the video link.
Sharing The Gospel Like The Apostles
October 14th, I held my first U.S. evangelism training class, “Share The Gospel Like The Apostles.” I gave this training in April at the Manna Bible Institute in Kenya. After coming home, I prayed about what to do with the material, and sensed the leading of God to hold a local training. In Kenya, it was a week-long class, but I squeezed my local one into six hours. It was received well by the small group of students. Randy commented, “I feel like your class helped me to understand evangelism in the way that it was meant to be.” And Lillian said “This class helped me to have a new perspective on approaching people with the Good News. It also helped me better understand how to spiritually read a person or group.”
The training is unlike other evangelism courses, in terms of content. I used the gospel messages of the Apostles from the book of Acts as our text. We studied their sermons to learn what the gospel is and how they presented it. Then we compared that to what is found in modern evangelism, and challenged ourselves to share the gospel like the Apostles.
The Midnight Teacher
In the early hours of a Friday morning in August, I had my third opportunity to be an instructor at Manna Bible Institute in Kenya, via video link. Due to the eight-hour time difference I began teaching at 1:00 a.m., while it was 9:00 a.m. Kenyan time. The picture shows my set up, and how things looked to the students. Praise God I did not fall asleep while teaching!
I was an instructor for the Evangelism Class, a course the Manna Bible Institute offers. I will be teaching again via video in December, with the same students.
The subject was The Office and Work of an Evangelist. I developed and taught two lessons on this and will be writing two more for December. Paul told Timothy, “…do the work of an evangelist…,” (2 Tim. 4:5) The lessons dig in, describing what an evangelist is.
There were about 25 students, one was from Tanzania and the rest from Kenya. They were there for a week of teaching, while my class was just on Friday. Among the students, several women were there, I have noticed this in each of my classes. These ladies all have an incredible passion for Christ, His Word and to make His gospel known.
Whenever I teach, I am grateful for my various interpreters. Pastor Charles Mbaluka did this work for me in August, and he posted a comment on Facebook saying about the teaching, “It was impactful.”
am making my first public announcement of plans to return to Kenya in 2024. This summer, Dr. Bishop George Muguro, head of the Manna Bible Institute, extended an invitation for me to come back. The trip will be in April again, and in similar fashion, I will be teaching for one week, with evangelistic outreaches in the afternoons, evenings and other speaking engagements.
With this commitment to return, I never dreamed of God establishing a ministry partnership for teaching, with a college in Kenya. All this is of God, and I am just following His leading, step by step.
Thank you for those who have prayed and supported my previous international ministry trips over the years to India, Nicaragua and Kenya two times. I look forward to your continued partnership as I travel back to Africa.
Disaffiliations In The Methodist Church
Once a month I preach at the Green Christian Church, formally the Green United Methodist Church. This summer they completed going through the long and difficult process of disaffiliating with the United Methodist Church denomination. Unfortunately, they are not alone in this. On May 31, the Great Plains conference approved 155 churches to disaffiliate. There are literally thousands of United Methodist Churches who have parted ways.
This is not something to celebrate. It is heart-breaking. Why are they all leaving? Because of the issues surrounding homosexuality. On paper, The UMC upholds what the Bible teaches on this and in their Book of Discipline, but they do not practice it.
The denominational leadership, and some of their educational institutions, condone homosexual marriage and gay clergy. This is false teaching. They are twisting what the Word of God says, and leading multitudes of people astray through lies and deceptive practices. The Bible says, “Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.” (1 Cor. 6:9-10) I applaud churches like Green that have chosen to disaffiliate, and also applaud those who have chosen to stay and be a voice of truth in a dying denomination.
God Is On The Move In Arkansas
This summer I preached at Rocky Branch Baptist Church in Rogers, Arkansas, near Beaver Lake. It is a rural and growing church. When I stood up to speak, little did I know there was a young mother who walked in as a guest that day. A nearby church had recommended she come, so that morning she got in her car and drove herself to the church. As I spoke, God stirred her heart with His holy Word. Then at the invitation she responded, and with the help of another woman, she surrendered her life to Jesus. Praise God!
God is on the move at Rocky Branch. Pastor Dick Kelsey gave me a tour of a major remodeling project of their old sanctuary, to accommodate more class space for the growing church.
You Nailed It!
Here are a few comments from readers of my Speaking Truth syndicated newspaper column. (Image from unsplash.com)
After reading my column, Doing Good for The Right Reasons, Mark emailed me saying, “You nailed it again! Thanks for your inspiring words.” (Great Bend Tribune, Great Bend, KS)
I want people to read my columns and be challenged in their thinking. Cindy was one of those. She strongly opposed what I wrote in Is Healing from Mental Illness Possible? She said, “Using your thinking, all[mental]illnesses could be eliminated if only the sick person would turn to religion. I hope none of them are taking your comments to heart,” (Clay Center Dispatch, Clay Center, KS)
The column, The Time is Now, brought Joy to contact me. She wrote, “Your article about the debauchery of our country was so telling. I shudder at what our children are being put through and it seems to be spreading!” (La Junta Tribune Democrat, La Junta, CO)
Thank you so much for reading. I hope you have been encouraged and pointed to Jesus. If you have any questions or comments, please let me know.
Servant of Jesus. Servant of Yours,