The Good Physician…He Has Never Lost A Case

Preparing for suicide, I set the steering wheel for the bridge rail. The pain of brokenness had to stop, and this was the easiest way. Satan showed me my own funeral…all the flowers, the eulogies, the friends. All were coming to pay respects as they were saddened by my death in a car accident.

Only one thing was missing; Satan never showed me the eternal damnation I was facing. The pain of my young life had overwhelmed me. Everything around me seemed broken. I had broken the hearts of many friends, my own heart, the moral law, the social law, and my own expectations. I was only 18, yet my inward life was in shambles. It was time to ‘go out’ under the guise of an accident.

Then, as certain as the still small voice spoke to Elijah, the Lord spoke, piercing the deception of the enemy and the darkness of my heart. He convicted me of my sin and offered me hope and forgiveness at the same time. I cried out to Him…repenting of my sins and surrendering my whole heart and life to Him as my Lord and Savior. Continue reading “The Good Physician…He Has Never Lost A Case”

Broken Jars

One of the greatest beauties of Christianity is that the Lord uses weak and broken vessels to demonstrate the living gospel to others. Redemption is not for perfect people. It is only for those who know their own brokenness and depravity. I wrote an article sometime back on how the Lord uses the wrong kind of people. You can read it here. Let us never lose the sight of the beauty of mercy and grace.

I think sometimes we fail to clearly communicate the gospel with the full force of truth concerning our human need for salvation. We’ve ‘pop-psychologized’ the message of redemption. By this I mean we present the gospel as a help for the situation or problem people find themselves in. This literally turns Jesus into a bell-hop or personal dispensing machine to help make man better. It is not the gospel.

The gospel is that we are ‘really sinners.’ Not theoretically or just theologically, but really…with force. We are undone, unholy, broken to the core by original and personal sin and stand condemned before the justice of God. When this is woven into the fabric of Continue reading “Broken Jars”

Famine in the Land

There are more religious networks and programs on television than ever before. Likewise, there are more churches than ever. However, upon closer examination there is another observation which saddens the heart of every genuine believer–there has never been as much false teaching, false doctrine and perverse representations of Christianity as we see today. There is a famine in the Land!

“…not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord:” (Amos 8:11)

In the midst of an explosion of technology, we see a lot of lateral movements with showmanship and youth culture idolatry, but few genuine conversions. This famine is from the loss of the clear and biblical presentation of God’s Word and it produces several problems which now confront us.

Prosperity Pimps – We see the ‘get rich’ false prophets rob the widows and gullible so they can maintain their lavish lifestyles. They are worse than the Pharisees of Jesus’ day. These charlatans twist the meaning of passages in an attempt to manipulate the ignorant into believing they are giving to God, when in fact, they are financially supporting the fleshly lusts of the preachers. These are modern day ‘money changers.’ Continue reading “Famine in the Land”

Sprinting Toward Death….Finding Life

Death and despair have their strongholds in every culture and among all social classes. The human soul was created to be in fellowship with it’s Creator. However, when men and women have not heard the Glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ, death appears to be the quick exit from pain, agony and emptiness. This is the back drop to the story of mankind in general, and to the following story in particular. (names changed for security reasons)

Lexi is a young lady in a rural village in India. Her young  life had come crashing down as the Doctor informed her she had HIV/AIDS. It was a death sentence. A result from a life of prostitution. However, the pain became even more intense when she was betrayed by close friends who shared her plight with the locals and brought even more pressure to bear upon her heart as she became an outcast to her village. The village Elders asked her to leave and not come back.

As a Hindu and a believer in re-incarnation, Lexi began the journey to bring about change in her life. She desired to end her present life and have a re-incarnation to a better life. She planned to accomplish this by casting herself into the nearby river to be taken down by the whirlpool. She ran, with tears in her eyes and brokenness in her heart….she sprinted toward death! Continue reading “Sprinting Toward Death….Finding Life”

Suffer the Little Children

A casual read through the gospels will reveal our Lord’s special love for children and His desire for us to have their disposition. There is a tender innocence toward faith and teachability which Jesus recognized in the children of his culture, and He pointed this out in several of His teachings to the disciples. When our Lord walked the shores of Galilee, one thing was for sure… children were dear to His heart and were given free access into His presence.

We read about God’s love for them from “their angels always see the face the Father” (Mt. 18:2,10) and “except you be converted and become as little children” (Mt. 18:3), to “suffer the little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” (Mt. 19:13-15) We read the passages and discover how the Lord used them as examples of what we should be. Also, James instructs us that pure religion and undefiled before our heavenly Father is to visit the “widows and the orphans in their affliction.” (James 1:27)

With that in mind, several have asked how Susanne and I began the orphanage in India. Here is the brief story behind the PROJECT INDIA Orphanage. Continue reading “Suffer the Little Children”

Christopher Hitchens – Without Excuse

The Apostle Paul wrote in the books of Romans that God has revealed Himself to every man. He teaches us that this knowledge is a result of creation and conscience. Because of this, every man is without excuse. (Rom. 1:18-20) Man’s rejection of God’s existence is not because there isn’t sufficient evidence. Rather, it is because he chooses to suppresses the evidence which exists.

Why would man suppress the witness of God’s existence through the voice of creation and conscience? Because man wants to justify his immorality and sin, and the only way to quiet his innate knowledge and conviction of his sin requires drowning his conscience. This can happen in several ways, however, I want to discuss something different in this post.

Christopher Hitchens died of esophageal cancer this week at the age of 62 in Houston, TX. Hitchens was one of the militant atheists who brazenly spoke against Christianity and those who believe it. He has become the hero and idol of thousands who Continue reading “Christopher Hitchens – Without Excuse”

Letter From a Witchdoctor – Darkness to Light

The power of the Holy Spirit reveals His work through the preaching of the Gospel. As Jesus is proclaimed, the Holy Spirit can break through the powers of darkness and deliver man. Satan’s deception and lies cannot prevent truth from piercing the heart of those seeking truth and setting them free in Christ. Below is a testimony received from a recent outreach meeting in a rural village of India. We rented a community hall and invited people to come to the meeting. Ten people openly came forward to receive the Lord’s offer of salvation. One man, who lived next to the community, just sent this testimony to us. (The English is rough as it has gone through translation from his native language of Telugu.)

My name is M________ . I am very bad person. Whenever I see a pastor or hear the gospel, I used to become very angry because I use to think bible belongs to white people. Jesus is not an Indian, why should we pray to him when we have 330 million gods and goddesses?

I am the person who does witchcraft. I practice the witchcraft to control and kill people. I operated in witchcraft with an evil spirit. Continue reading “Letter From a Witchdoctor – Darkness to Light”

You Shall Dream Dreams

Many modern attempts of evangelism seem to place their dependance upon music, lighting, eloquence of speech and personal charisma. We ‘convince’ converts through gimmicks, crafty persuasion or emotional manipulations. We make them part of the ‘club’ with alluring benefits of gyms, golf tournaments, concerts and other devised and enticing opportunities if they join up. And, sad to say, our converts reveal the results of these carnal attempts by being no different from the world we are supposed to rescue them from. Usually, instead of genuine believers, we create unregenerated religiousites (my word) who now are under the delusion of being saved. We produce “strange children” because we use our fleshly attempts instead of the simplicity of God’s Word and reliance upon the Holy Spirit.

The Lord promised something much greater. He said,

“And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:” (Acts 2:17-18, emphasis added)

The outpouring of the Holy Spirit, which began on the Day of Pentecost after our Lord’s resurrection, is the catalyst which should be the power and clarity of our life and Continue reading “You Shall Dream Dreams”

ReThinking Church, Part 7 – Instantly Evangelistic

When we examine the Biblical text we find another stark contrast between evangelism in the modern church verses what it looked like in the New Testament church. Today, for the most part and with few exceptions, evangelism is relegated to and seen as the responsibility of Pastors and Evangelists. Pastors, because they are continually teaching and preaching to inquirers and visitors on Sunday mornings. Evangelists, because soul winning is innate to their gifting and the thrust of their talents and calling. (Much could be said about this, but it would take us off topic.)

Evangelism in the New Testament church was an immediate and ordinary action following conversion to Jesus as Lord. Fishing for men became the instant and expected norm of a new believer. Today, we make converts comfortably inactive by giving them all the excuses why they need to wait: you’re not prepared, you need to learn, you are not an evangelist, bring your friends to church, get your friends to call the Pastor, etc…  Continue reading “ReThinking Church, Part 7 – Instantly Evangelistic”

Letter From A Prostitute

Recently, through Project India, I was given the honor of speaking to a church in Eastern India via telephone and through an interpreter. This church is in a rural area which had recently experienced grave tragedy through the flooding of a local river. During this speaking engagement a lady, who had never attended church before, came into the service and experienced the simplicity and power of the gospel. Here is her testimony in her own words. (translated to English from Telugu, therefore a little rough, but I will leave it as she wrote it.)

“I am an prostitute…very bad women, never come to church before, today I came because I was suffering with back pain, I have heard that Jesus is healer. As I was entering in to church some preaching in English, Pastor J___ is translating in Telugu. I was trying to find  the person who is preaching, but I could not see him. Afterwards I was asking a lady who is nearby me, she said, Pastor Terry is preaching word, through phone. As I was  Continue reading “Letter From A Prostitute”

A River Runs Through It

A week ago, a small village in Eastern India was flooded by torrential rains. The rains caused the nearby river to flood and destroyed 24 homes. Some of these homes, which are nothing more than thatched huts, belonged to members of a small congregation I am working with. Eight members of this congregation of 45 were killed by the flooding river. The scene described to me was extremely sad.

I received another email early Saturday morning, September 17, concerning the situation. Brother John, the church planter I work with, asked me if I would speak to the church at their service on Sunday, September 18, via telephone. John, who is native Indian, would translate my message into their native language of Telugu. Of course I agreed. After working out the logistics and time, I spent the day in prayer. John called me around one in the morning central time to begin the service as they are 10 1/2 hours ahead of us.
Continue reading “A River Runs Through It”

ReThinking Church, Part 6 – God Uses the Wrong People

As we continue investigating the New Testament model of ‘church,’ the next thing which stands out is how the Lord uses all the ‘wrong people.’ Of course, I say this tongue in cheek as only the Lord can make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. However, when we compare the members of the early church to the our middle and upper class fellowships, we see a stark contrast.

We leaders hate to admit it…but we target the ‘money people.’ They can fund our projects, support our needs and put our church finances at ease as they immediately come with a dividend. This stings, but time and time again I have seen fellow Pastors ‘suck up’ to those in the community who have financial success, while ignoring and even standing aloof from those who were in real need. To appease our conscience we send outreach into the poor neighborhoods and projects, but we dare not have these poor little unkept families come and smudge up our nice rooms and sanctuary. So we use a place out side our facilities to minister to them. God help us! We are hypocrites. Continue reading “ReThinking Church, Part 6 – God Uses the Wrong People”