On July 17th, a very hot day, Pastors John Sherwood and Peter Simpson were preaching the gospel in the centre of Uxbridge, helped by Mrs Patrcia Newman, who handed out tracts and spoke to passers-by.
As soon as Pastor Simpson mounted the steps to start preaching, a man who had heard him before said, Oh no, you are not going to start spouting all that nonsense again, are you? The gentleman was from North Africa, and said that the preaching would not go down very well in Morocco, where he originated from. He also added that the minister only believed what he did, because he had been brought up in Britain, and if that if he had been brought up in Morocco, he would be a Muslim.
Pastor Simpson responded that to be brought up in modern Britain is certainly no guarantee of becoming a Christian. Indeed, the average Briton today is most likely to come off the production line of the educational system and of the media-driven conditioning of people’s minds as a fully-fledged, card-carrying cultural Marxist.
The Penn minister explained that open air preaching, far from being an activity to be regarded as a nuisance, is in fact a longstanding British tradition. Back in the 18th century, for example, the open air preaching of Jesus Christ crucified for sinners helped to save this nation from a violent French-style revolution.
Furthermore, Biblical Christianity, so often historically proclaimed in the places of public concourse, is also behind the development of this nation’s parliamentary democracy and many of the freedoms which are now taken for granted in this country. It is an unstated reason why so many people from other lands desire to come and settle here. Life is still relatively good in Britain even now, despite all the spiritual decline, precisely because of the residual influence of the Biblical faith, because this faith teaches that all men are made in God’s image, and this leads to mutual respect in society, respect for the law and respect for the property of others. Likewise, the personal discipline which the new birth works in a convert to Christ engenders a desire to work hard and be honest, virtues which used to be known as the Protestant work ethic.
The Moroccan gentleman felt that there was no real difference between Christianity and Islam. Pastor Simpson responded that there most definitely was, and that Allah was not the God whom Christians worship. The pastor then tried to emphasise a key difference, namely the Biblical teaching that no man possesses an essential goodness whereby he can make himself acceptable to God. All men have sinful hearts which lead them inevitably to commit sinful acts. Only through Jesus Christ can the corrupted heart which is the source of sin be removed. Islam, in contrast, does not teach the depravity of man in his very nature. The Moroccan sadly did not seem moved by these arguments.
Mrs Newman spoke to a group of teenage girls about abortion, and it was so sad to hear those of such a young age being so well versed in the arguments in support abortion such as, It is no one else’s business what a woman does with her body, and, What about if someone has been raped? Rape argument is of course an absolute red herring, because 99.5% of abortions are not for this reason., and even where rape is an issue, the sins of the father must not be delivered upon the innocent children, which is what abortion effectively does.
Mrs Newman also spoke to two different girls, both very young, concerning whom it was obvious that they were in a same-sex relationship. They had been laughing at the preaching and making fun of it, but came back after a while to listen some more. Our witnessing sister approached them and gently pleaded with them about the sinfulness of this lifestyle, explaining that the God who made made us knows what is best for us.
One or two men going to and fro from a nearby betting shop uttered negative comments about the preaching. Pastor Sherwood replied that to gamble away one’s money was most unwise, and that in any case the only winning horse which they should focus their thoughts upon is the great white horse ridden by the Lord Jesus Christ, of whom we read in Revelation 19:11-12 :
“And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns” (Revelation 19:11–12).
May many who heard the gospel in Uxbridge realise that that they will be judged by Christ, the rider on the white horse, He who is Lord of lords and King of kings.