Thursday, January 11, 2007

Preaching on the train

Frustration on Wednesday led to some writing on Thursday morning.


There is a universal truth: ten out of ten people die. One day, all that we hold dear will be cruelly snatched from us by the unforgiving, unbreakable jaws of death. Only one Man has conquered death, but He only did so for sinners. Let’s see if you qualify for Heaven.

Have you ever told a lie? God created a special part in Hell just for liars.

Have you ever stolen anything? God will not allow thieves into Heaven.

Have you ever hated anyone? The Bible says, “He who hates his brother is a murderer and we know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in Him.”

Why did Jesus die and rise again? He is God in the flesh: He took the penalty for our sins. If we repent, then He can bless us with His victory over death. Otherwise, He’ll have to give us justice on Judgment Day.

Do people get mad? I suppose. I do notice people putting their music on when I'm preaching. Or they try to talk over me. But I got the shock of my life the first trip.

I had had to run to catch the train. So I panted and then stood up and started by reading quietly. At one stop, a security guard got on the train and asked, "What are you reading." So I showed it to him. He said, "Hmmm..that's pretty cool!" and gave some other encouragement as he left the train. So, of course, now I got louder! And louder. And louder, until the entire front half could hear me and maybe some people in the back. (Well, I was in the back, so...)

Then there were two women who got in, and I thought, Oh cool, two more people get to hear the truth. And so I kept reading. And I started repeating myself no matter what. People were quiet enough to hear, for the most part. But my mouth was getting dry from all that talking and also from the running. so I was licking my lips a lot in between readings. The two ladies' stop came up. the younger one asked me, "Mouth getting dry?" as she handed me a stick of gum. I said, "Yes. Thank you." As she left, I said, "God bless you." I tell you, I was stunned. That bit of encouragement right there carried me through the rest of the way.

In fact, as we approached the next station, I noticed a young man headed in my general direction. He came all the way to the back of the train to listen to what I had to say. At a pause, he asked if I was a youth pastor or something. I told him, "No, I'm just a Christian, I do this for everybody." He also encouraged me as he left the train.

I preached until I reached my stop. Then I handed a young lady who was standing on the platform the piece of paper that I had been reading. The girl sitting beside her looked up curiously, and I said, "Let her read it when you get done, please," and went on to work.

There I told two of my coworkers how great it was to be preaching on the train. One of them (L)is friendly but not a Christian, one of them (V)is a Christian. When I had amoment, I repeated the short message to L. At first she tried to justify herself, but I just repeated what the Bible said about those sins. She was shocked about hatred being murder, but the Bible ie very clear. (That quote is taken from 1 John 3:15.) V said that she could explain to L in more detail the differences between the the Roman Catholic teachings and the Bible's plain words at a lunch date, but we should get back to work so that the Name of God would not be blasphemed. She was right, and we did.

That night, I rewrote the script after work, to replace the original that I had given away. Then I preached all the way home. I got no encouragement this time, but I don't think I needed any more. What I did get was angry faces trapped in a train with a guy who wouldn't stop preaching at them about death and sin and Jesus Christ. Well, I pray that it will sink in some day.

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