Newsletter and Coming Events – March 2017

  • CAL SINGS AT FISHERMAN'S WHARF. CAL SINGS AT FISHERMAN'S WHARF.
  • JACOB WITNESSES AT THE WHARF. JACOB WITNESSES AT THE WHARF.
  • JACOB AND STEVE PRAY WITH COUPLE AT 5TH AND MARKET. JACOB AND STEVE PRAY WITH COUPLE AT 5TH AND MARKET.
  • CAL SINGS AT FISHERMAN'S WHARF. CAL SINGS AT FISHERMAN'S WHARF.
  • MIKE WITNESSES ON RAINY DAY IN BERKELEY. MIKE WITNESSES ON RAINY DAY IN BERKELEY.
  • JACOB WITNESSES IN BERKELEY. JACOB WITNESSES IN BERKELEY.
  • HAI WITNESSES AT 5TH AND MARKET. HAI WITNESSES AT 5TH AND MARKET.
  • STEVE PREACHES AT 5TH AND MARKET. STEVE PREACHES AT 5TH AND MARKET.
     

Coming Events

Friday March 31, April 7, 14 and 28 5 – 8 PM Witnessing in San Francisco neighborhoods.

Sat. April 1 and 15 Fifth St. and Market SF 12 PM – 4 PM

Sat. April 8  Berkeley Outreach (Shattuck St. near Center) 12:30 – 4:30 PM

SHIPWRECKED

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Cal sings at Fisherman’s Wharf.

Dear Christian friends,

We are near the end of our series on New Testament preaching. In Acts 27, Paul gives a word of knowledge to those who are sailing the ship carrying him as a prisoner to Rome. First, he warns them that the ship will be damaged if they leave Crete immediately. After they ignore his warning, he tells them that an angel appeared to him, telling him that nobody will perish in the wreck, but the ship will be destroyed, and they will be cast on an island. They listened to his advice, and nobody died. While there is no mention of Paul preaching the gospel on this occasion, his word of knowledge, as well as his behavior, ministered to these people. Certainly, these people knew Paul was imprisoned because of his beliefs. Most likely, he also talked with them about Jesus.

When they landed on Malta, a poisonous snake bit him. The natives expected him to die quickly. When he didn’t, they thought he was a god. Paul healed the father of the island’s leader, as well as other people.

When Paul arrived in Rome, he called together the Jewish leaders. “Though I have committed nothing against the people…yet I was delivered prisoner from Jerusalem.” These leaders were more receptive to the gospel than the Jews in Rome. “We desire to hear of you what you think.”

“He expounded and testified about the kingdom of God, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses and out of the prophets, from morning till evening. And some  believed  the  things  which were spoken, and some believed not.”  Luke concludes  by  quoting  Isaiah 6:9-10,  a  prophecy  that  the Jews  as  a  whole would  not  receive  the  gospel,  but  that the Gentiles would receive it.

In  this section, we can see how Paul operated in the supernatural gifts of word of knowledge and healing. God used these gifts to witness to unbelievers. While the passage does not say that Paul used these opportunities  to  share the gospel with people, he certainly did.   After all, he wrote “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation to those who believe” and “How shall they hear without a preacher?”   Paul certainly  would  not have missed these opportunities  to  share the gospel with people.  A miracle can certainly get people’s attention and help them to believe.   He certainly would  not  have  wanted people to  think  that these  miracles  were  done through his own power.

Finally, we have Paul, in Rome, making one last effort to reach the Jews. While the Roman Jews were more receptive to the gospel than those in Jerusalem, the Jewish people as a whole rejected the gospel, while the Gentiles were much more receptive. From that point, the gospel went mainly to the Gentiles, and many did in fact receive it.

On the Streets

On Friday December 2, we witnessed at 16th St. and Valencia. Jacob witnessed to Haiesa, from Portugal. He used Google Translate to share the gospel with her, and she thanked him for sharing. He also witnessed to Steven, who said he was born a Christian but no longer believed. Jacob shared about being born again, and spoke about evidence for the Christian faith. Jacob and Mike witnessed to Jamal, who was an agnostic. They spoke with him about Bible prophesy and read Isaiah 53 to him. He was touched, and said he would start reading the Bible. Cal witnessed to Pedro, from Mexico, who said he couldn’t give up alcohol. He attends a Protestant church and his girlfriend is pregnant. Kathy witnessed to Zaire, 19, who works as a security guard at Nordstroms. He thought he was a good person. I spoke with Fernando, 20, from Mexico. He said he was a Christian but also gay. He knew it was  a  sin,  but didn’t understand why God didn’t deliver him from it instantly. I shared my testimony and ministered to him.

The next day, we witnessed at Fisherman’s Wharf. It was a warm, sunny day. For the first time, we had reserved a spot right on the bay. Thousands of people passed by, but there were also benches for people to stop and listen, as well as to sit and talk with us. Cal ministered to Patrice, who had received books from the Hare Krishnas. He warned her about the dangers of opening yourself up to evil spirits. Dave and Jacob ministered to Christina. She is a Christian with two daughters, one a lesbian and the other a transsexual. They encouraged her to draw close to God, and that He would give her wisdom to minister to her children. Mike, Steve, and I all spoke with John, who professed to be a believer and was quite familiar with Christian apologetics, but didn’t have a clear understanding of salvation. Steve got his email for follow-up. Dave witnessed to two Jehovah’s Witnesses, Jeannetta and Crystal. He spoke about the new birth. Steve and Dave ministered to John, a veteran of the Afghanistan war, who is an alcoholic and did not think God could save or deliver him.

On Sat. December 10, we witnessed in downtown Berkeley. It rained for part of the day, so we put up our canopies. Tim Moon played music and several of us preached. There are two canopies in the area (outside the BART escalator and under the Chase Bank on the corner) where we can stand and witness to people during the rain. Jacob witnessed to Lucky. His sister had died recently, but had given her life to Christ. He insisted that he knew God, even though he was smoking marijuana as they talked. Jacob and Kathy witnessed to Bronwen, an atheist who was interested in Christianity. She was the most receptive atheist Jacob had spoken with recently, and gave him her contact information so they could talk in depth. Kathy, David and Jacob also witnessed to Delilah, a Muslim. She was intrigued by how they claimed to have a relationship with God. Dave spoke with Kofi, a nominal Christian from Central Africa, and Mark, a Catholic who was trusting in his own righteousness. DeAnna spoke with a man who was screaming hateful words about Jesus. She challenged him to tell her what she could say that would change his mind. He looked intently at her, stopped screaming, smirked and then put the tract in his pocket and walked away.

On Fri. December 16, we witnessed at Powell and Market. There were a lot of people in the area doing their Christmas shopping. Jacob witnessed to Fernando, whom I had spoken with a few weeks before at 16th and Valencia. He said he was gay but believed in Jesus. He had watched testimonies of ex-gay Christians on line, but didn’t believe them. He also didn’t believe Jacob’s testimony. Apparently, the only way he would believe someone had been delivered from homosexuality is if that person suddenly found himself lusting after women. Jacob also witnessed to Courtney, whom he had seen a few months ago at Union Square smoking marijuana. Cal witnessed to Leticia, from Mexico, whom he had seen a few weeks ago at 16th St. and Mission. It is amazing how frequently we meet people whom we had witnessed to in other parts of the city. Cal also witnessed to Chris. After sharing the gospel with him, he said “It really does make sense. I’ve never had it explained to me like that.”

The next day, we held our final outreach of 2016 at 5th St. and Market. Richard Griffin played music. Jacob and an ex-Muslim Christian witnessed to Aaron, a nominal Muslim. After they shared about contradictions in the Quran, he said “I don’t believe in the Quran or the Bible.” He said he would look into the claims of the Bible, and let them pray for him. Jacob also witnessed to a young homosexual who started crying when he told him that God could deliver him from homosexuality. He also witnessed to Eddie, a Jehovah’s Witness (JW). They went through the JW Bible to prove that Jesus is Jehovah. Cal witnessed to Michael, 50, who said he knew nothing about the gospel. He had tears in his eyes as Cal shared the gospel with him. I witnessed to three high school students who were Muslims from Yemen.

Ministry Needs

Thank you again for your prayers and financial support for our ministry. As we enter a new year, we are planning our outreaches for the year and applying for permits. Please pray that we would get permits, especially at Dolores Park. We expect the permits to cost about $2500 this year.

While the past two winters have been pretty dry, this year we seem to be getting more rain. It is always difficult to witness on rainy days. When I’m tempted to cancel an outreach because of rain, I think of the tens of thousands of people who sit in a football stadium in the rain or snow to watch a game. I figure we Christians should be at least as “fanatical” about witnessing as they are about football. I first started witnessing 46 years ago in Portland, Oregon in the winter. It rained almost all day, every day. We gave out a lot of soggy tracts, but, amazingly, people got saved.

As of Feb. 1, we held over 100 hours of outreach during the rainy season, with perhaps a total of one hour of rain during this time. What happens  with remarkable frequency is that it will rain  as we are driving to the outreach, stop raining throughout the outreach, and start raining on the way home!

I hope many of you will join us for an outreach this next month.

Yours in His love,

Larry Rosenbaum

 

 

 

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