This will be the last OACI UPDATE that I produce as the International President. Sometimes what a person says just before they die (not that I plan on dying any time soon) is profound. Sometimes, not so. Elvis Presley is reported to have said, “I’m going to the bathroom to read.” Marie Antionette’s last words, after stepping on the toe of her executioner, “Pardon, monsieur.” Australia’s famous bushranger (a roving country criminal), Ned Kelly, as he was about to be hanged, said, “Such is life”.
Of far greater significance are the words of Paul the apostle. His last written words are the last chapter of his last letter, Second Timothy chapter 4. He begins: “I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom:” Wow, after a grand statement like that, what is coming next? “Preach the word.” Of all the things he could have said, it is “Preach the word” – part of which is the Gospel! And just a few sentences later he says, “Do the work of an evangelist.”
Ned Kelly was famous for wearing a square metal helmet and armour. He would stand in the street and confront the police with his guns. He was difficult to catch because there was a certain amount of England’s Robin Hood about him. Some of his stolen loot he would pass on to the poor. No one would tell the police where he was hiding.
In our work with OAC we too confront folk, often in the street, with the Gospel, but in a more loving and engaging way than the bush ranger! Our tried and tested methods have proven to be effective in many nations. As you read through these brief reports from the front lines of evangelism around the world, I trust that you will be encouraged.
A shortened, two page version is also available here.