by Dr. Brian Kelly
In today’s culture, because so many popular institutions and personalities both in and outside the church have betrayed the trust of those under their care, any certainty regarding truth-claims meets with a high level of skepticism. Yet, in a more and more complex world, there are still timeless truths that need to be made clear to those who are seeking after truth.
That humans and the systems and organizations they create are flawed is a certainty we see affirmed repeatedly. But there is One who never sinned; indeed, who paid the ultimate price for everyone else’s sin. The message of this timeless truth continues to carry limitless power for genuine transformation in the lives of people, regardless of cultural complexities or societal shifts.
As we celebrate once again the Advent of his coming we are reminded once again of the significance of this ancient story. The universality of the human sin condition could only be dealt with through God’s graceful provision in the coming of his Son. It was not just his coming 2,000 years ago, but it was his living, his dying, and his rising from the dead, that are all part of the Cross Event. We celebrate his coming to earth way back when, in anticipation of his coming again to take his own to be with him for eternity. That is enough to make not only the angels rejoice but all who call upon his name to be saved as well!
We at Barnabas Missions are committed to continually telling this great story of God’s grace toward us sinful humans. Regularly we try to get out into the neighborhoods and marketplace here in Scotts Valley to share the love of Christ with people. It’s amazing how open people are to the truth of the gospel if you approach them in a winsome way and encourage them to share their beliefs about God and the spiritual realities of life and death. Of course, we always offer to share what the Bible says about these things and pray for them. Just last week in front of Baskin-Robbins, my assistant Kent Leslie prayed with a 15-year-old. He received Christ as a result of completing our Religious Attitude Questionnaire and hearing the greatest story ever told, the story of his redemption through the sacrifice of Christ. Pray for Alex that our follow-up efforts with him would be fruitful. His story is part of our story now yours and ours as he has become a part of the family of God here on earth. As the angels rejoice over Christ’s advent, they likewise rejoice over that one salvation. So the Scripture tells us.
I was able to share with an older man who said he had been a cocaine and heroin addict for 25 years. When I asked him
What do you think will happen to you when you die? he replied,
I don’t really know, but my mother is dying of lung cancer, and I’m a chain smoker myself, so I guess I’ll find out soon enough. We were able to share with him that great story about how much Christ loves him regardless of his past. He received the message gladly but was not ready to give his life to Christ. We keep praying for the meat cutter at Scotts Valley Safeway who heard the gospel on his
We continue to covet your prayers as there is a lot of resistance in the spiritual realm to getting the story out. Prayer warriors like you can make a big difference. As we connect with pastors all across California and the U.S. to equip their people to be more effective at sharing their faith with the lost, the evil one will do everything he can to thwart us. However, greater is he that is in us than he that is in the world. We know our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, the authorities and the powers of this dark world, the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Your prayers have a huge impact as the prayer of a person living right with God is something powerful to be reckoned with.
We could also use your financial help. The Lord has blessed us with some recent generous donations but we still need some sizeable one-time year-end gifts to help defray the cost of producing the
Foundations for Faith discipleship CD, and the
Be His Witness, Part 1 video series for training folks to engage the lost with the gospel through the use of questionnaires and booklets. Your financial support would give us a big boost right now in our efforts.
We are confident that as you pray about what you could do in this regard, God will meet our need according to His riches in glory. Thanks again for your kind consideration of our mission and generosity towards us as we attempt to fulfill God’s call on our lives to
win the lost, preach the gospel and teach others to do likewise. May God continue to richly bless you in your faithfulness toward his work around the world.
Together with you for a Greater Harvest,
Brian Kelly, Ph.D.,