The murder of a monster
(intrigue in the forest)
The Holy Bible indeed warns all of us that "for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword" (Matthew 26:52). Perilous words that should never be ignored!
Stalin certainly sharpened his socialist sword, personally hundreds of times. Or at least when he wasn't daily signing thousands of death certificates (along with Molotov) that would be swiftly launched against his intended and imaginary victims. Justice was certainly blind in "good old" Soviet Russia in those dangerous dark days, with Stalin acting as his own "anointed grim reaper."
Of course, others would be conscripted into performing his more "unpleasant tasks," with many of them not surprisingly being escorted at 3 am in the morning to become as guests at the dreaded Lubyanka Prison in Moscow, and many later being disposed of by a bullet or two. And, yes, it still functions today as a state operative department and with a KGB museum, can you believe, open to tourists and the public! For Stalin. there would never be a slight grudge forgotten by him, however long ago it had been committed, whether in innocence, or intent, or as a joke.
As Russia's "supreme" and "beloved" leader, Stalin would only ever board an aircraft once when flying to Tehran in 1943 as part of the so-called "big-three" meeting with Churchill and FDR. He was always paranoid about leaving his mother country and with good reason, it seems. Yet he did visit London in 1907 to attend a socialist conference at a then brotherhood church in Stepney with Lenin. I do have to speculate if he was marked out as future (paid) informer for the English police, or were Mrs Pankhurst's suffragettes of more interest to the good old boys of old "H" division, then active in London.
It's interesting to speculate that the young Stalin and maybe Lenin were introduced to Mrs Pankhurst and her daughters in 1907. In fact, Mrs Pankhurst was herself in Petrograd, Russia for three months in 1917 and may well have shared a leisurely meal of Knish and a glass of kvass (a non-alcoholic drink, by the way) with the young Stalin and others. There is an unconfirmed rumour that the then-desperate Tsar Nicholas asked to meet her, but she refused to meet him or his wife or children, for whatever reason. What a shame! Her intervention for them with the British government and the UK Royal family was never taken up. (The Royals were related of course). Her intervention may have saved their lives, but it was not to be. The Tsar and his family would be later murdered in 1918, probably on Lenin's order. Incidentally, Miss Christabel Pankhurst, Mrs Pankhurst's eldest daughter, would later convert to the Plymouth Brethren whilst living in America. She died there in 1958 and was found sitting upright in her chair by her housekeeper. I like to think of her with an open Bible on her lap. She never married and was remembered as a "very spiritual woman," and I do believe she was saved.
Apparently, Stalin enjoyed a photographic memory (never forgetting an enemy’s face, of course, to somehow seek out and naturally punish that person severely). It seems he could devour a book a day, and had over 10,000 in his personal library, or so it is claimed. He liked the old Hollywood movies, especially imported American westerns with John Wayne shooting it out on the silver screen, a perennial favourite, it seems, when not signing those never-ending death warrants. Such hypocrisy should come as no surprise, for his people were strictly prohibited from not only enjoying such western decadence, in the way of movies, but music, especially jazz music, was very much on Stalin's "banned list"!
President Truman would apparently call him "the little squirt," but never to his face, of course.
Were you aware that Winston Churchill was always cautious of him and dangerously delighted in joking with him when they had downed a few vodkas. And Roosevelt it seems: "Always expressed a high opinion of Stalin, the man of steel," but all of them, whether or not, knew they were walking on dangerous ground at the crazy court of the pipe-loving "red tsar.”
In his book Gentleman Spy, Peter Grose relates a story heard about a suggested trip to Paris at the War's cessation by Stalin for a four-power summit. Of course, it never happened, but it seems the CIA got wind of this proposed trip to France and "suggested a routine sabotage as an irritant to the busy passengers (in a state car), contamination of the circulation system, or make the air Stalin would breathe unpleasant or perhaps dangerous. Or should they consider an explosive to actually destroy the car and its passengers."
Well, of course, it never happened, Stalin never departed Russia (apart from his 1943 trip to Tehran) and would die in 1953 by hands unknown. Many are still skeptical about his unexplained death, and so they should be. As I conclude this two-part article it is 20th January 2017, and President Elect Donald Trump is hours away from being sworn in as the 45th President of the United States of America (and it all went smoothly, I'm glad to report, as probably most of you know by now), an historic day no doubt. President Trump seems to be his own man, but more importantly God will always call the "shots" in the years ahead for America and the rest of the world.
Now we come to the so-called "doctor’s plot" or "dyelo vrachey."
On April 11 1953, Winston Churchill wrote to President Eisenhower concerning the persecuted doctors that he had discovered, and after Stalin's suspicious demise a few weeks later, Churchill wrote: "This must cut very deeply into communist discipline and structure." Well, he was correct in his brief summation in that the old corrupt communist clique was changing, with some members walking through the exit door and with others scheming to survive after Stalin's Soviet world.
As regards the so-called doctors' plot, it somehow reminds me of a Dostoyevsky novel and were you aware of the following quote? "Beauty is mysterious as well as terrible. God and the devil are fighting there and at the battlefield is the heart of man." How true I say to that observation. And of Stalin's prolonged deathbed spasms over those prolonged days in that beautiful secluded dacha (we can imagine in our minds those frightened doctors and nurses and other dubious characters desperately wandering in and out of Stalin's so-called "sick room," rather like a third-rate theoretical drama. It's almost like an opera by Bela Bartok, i.e. "Bluebeards Castle" fame. Only this time it would be set to music by this Hungarian maestro of melody, always a delight to linger over and appreciate, if he had been commissioned, that is.)
The so-called plot was in embryo phase, it seems, for several years before Stalin's stepped in to orchestrate its progress. Personally, he had always shown a dislike towards the Jews and their sacred traditions. One must also remember the wicked pogroms of the 19th and 20th century's in Tsarist Russia. It also offered Stalin "the long overdue reason" to clear out the stables of the Kremlin's pampered politburo elite of yes men. Many of course were Stalin's old Bolshevik buddies. Yet it seems, "Stalin almost never issued a direct order. Rather, he would approve or have others approve orders prepared by others," writes Jonathan Brent.
But wasn't there always an air of menace lurking around Stalin's appearance as he watched you through those yellow-tinted narrow eyes, even in banning the Russian Orthodox religion and introducing his own god, himself of course, as the new icon of "unholy mother Russia"? Again Jonathan Brent's personal pen portrait of the man reads vividly that, "He could wait for years before eliminating a rival and weren't they always his inferiors. He could be ruthless and cruel keeping his brutality in abeyance and always changeable and cautious and trusting his animal instincts when needed...Stalin's will shaped a world (his world)....he trusted no one, and prided himself on being an amateur psychologist." And those unsuspecting doctors, artists, and intellectuals of the 1950s were now in his suspicious sights in the twilight of his own years.
In those grim days of the 1950s the rumour mill would accuse Jewish doctors of falsely drinking Gentiles’ blood or injecting children with grown germs or diphtheria or murdering newborn Gentile infants in maternity wards.
In the 14th century, Jewish doctors had again been falsely accused of spreading the dreaded black plague in the city's Christian drinking fountains. Now in Pravda's biased editorials there was talk of dangerous "Jewish nationalism" lurking again in the country's wings, and all of course "paid spies of the Americans," as well as hidden "Jewish dangers" and to always decline from supping "Jewish soup," whatever that was. All stoked, of course, in the fires of Stalin's paranoia against medics in bloodstained white coats.
These painful parodies of so-called Russian justice were naturally served up for private Soviet court hearings then being staged in the early 1950s, so much of the legal claptrap of a suspicious state's so-called legal system and would have resembled the previous famous Moscow show trials from 1936 to 1938, where innocent people were accused of crimes against the state, often with false manipulated evidence drawn up against them. Many times, the victims' family would be used as a cruel pawn to coerce the accused to confess to crimes not committed or their immediate family would be arrested. Many found it easier to confess to their false accusations, forsaking their own lives for their families. It should also be remembered that Beria, the so-called "lord of the Lubyanka" through his NKVD thugs or later the KGB (Russia's brutal secret police) their practiced noted torture techniques used by the Spanish Inquisition, looking like a school picnic outing set in the dark forests inhabited by Hansel and Gretel.
The suspicious death of Stalin, perhaps at the clammy fleshy hands of Beria or one of his own pet doctors, who always seemed to be waiting for the gruff command of their master’s voice before they acted, events I suggest were put into swift motion.
(Beria, secret police chief)
After Stalin's dwindling death, the reputed and ruthless and suspected pervert of the politburo became the surprising saving reformer of this Darwinist/Marxist terror state built on corruption and cruelty. Now Beria, the so-named "chairman of cruelty" emerged from the murky mists of the Moscow sewers, where incidentally, so many of his victims and Stalin's suspected enemies had previously been deposited alive or dead, it is claimed after suffering from the torture rack. But now apparently, he is the surprise reformer of the sadistic state system or perhaps a natural precursor of the reformer, Mikhail Gorbachev.
As for the 37 innocent doctors previously arrested from 1951-1953 and others found guilty of their crimes (17 of Jewish faith), purpose-built concentration camps were now being hastily erected to accommodate the innocent and unaware victims for deportation, and many others as well, all being caught up in Stalin's net of lies. It seems they would later be transported by cattle truck to forced deportations at four concentration camps in Komi, two in Kazakhstan Andone and two in the Irkutsk region. I'm sure pre-building plans were being drawn up for many more locations before the arrest of the medics that fortunately ceased when Stalin died. Apparently, the remains of some of the unfinished and now crumbling camps can still be witnessed today, if you look hard enough that is, with many being overgrown by moss and saplings, weeds and depressing weeping willow trees.
The mere mention of trees reminds us of what happened in the Katyn Forest in Poland in 1940 and of the murders of 21,857 Polish army officers on the orders of Stalin, to be implemented by the faithful Beria and his NKVD death squads. This will be a future project for me to research, as new evidence of this massacre is still be unearthed. Stalin's "killing fields" are still sadly being unearthed in Russia, even today in a far and remote region.
Stalin always feared the enemy within, it seems, and if he could not find a new foe to eliminate, then he simply conjured up a new one. None would be safe from the so-called "man of steel" and if his icy reptilian death stare settled on you, then watch out, my friend.
The so-called doctors' plot had been instigated by a disillusioned doctor Timashuk. It seems she was a secret agent of the MGB operative working at a hospital that specialised in treating any major communist party functionaries who might be ailing.
One such member was the powerful politburo member, a Mr. Andrei Zhdanov from Leningrad who, when not castigating the composer Shostakovitch, enjoyed playing the piano for Stalin in his master's wooded dacha. He had died in 1948 and the treating doctors were accused by this woman of neglect and maybe even murder in his treatment, and her accusations reached Stalin's ears. But it took several years for her accusations to come to fruition. Eight Jewish doctors were arrested a month before Stalin's death. The communist party news outlets Pravda and Tass naturally reported the news of their shocking arrests, as well as Stalin severing diplomatic relations with Israel, it seems. (Diplomatic relations were later restored after his death.) It is of interest that Golda Meir who was the Israeli Prime Minister from 1969-1974 was the first Israeli ambassador appointed to Russia, taking up her post in 1948.
There is another theory that Stalin was planning a limited nuclear conflict with America, or as some suggest, was simply testing the resolve of the new president. Remember, Eisenhower had only been sworn in on January 20th of that year. Or was an ailing Stalin by then a useful puppet of the Jesuit/Illuminati cabal, with Beria being their chosen man to bring a post-Stalin world under the control of Wall Street and the Vatican, who knows?
The same could be said today, with media reports of a Russian spy ship anchored off the coast of America. Putin, following in the steps of his hero Stalin, is testing Trump's resolve and inexperienced cabinet.
Whether the politburo would have assisted Stalin in preparing to initiate a possible dangerous nuclear atomic attack on America is not known. I do suspect Beria the plotter was watching events very carefully, maybe expecting that his time was close at hand, and maybe it was.
Death at the Dacha
Joseph Stalin died on March 5th, 1953 at his secluded country dacha at Kuntsevo. It still stands today and apparently seems almost untouched since its notorious tenant journeyed to everlasting Hell from this beautiful God-given forest.
Previously, an evening’s entertainment arranged by Stalin for his own perverted pleasure would be to invite his henchmen to the secluded dacha, then slowly ply them with vodka, all while playing his old Russian records of mazurkas on his prized gramophone purchased by Churchill as a gift for him in the 1940s. Watching these men forced to dance with each other must have been rather like a dance macabre for witnesses to see in disgust. How his cronies must have despised him as he watched with contempt, as he sipped his own glass of iced water. What a sight it must have been as they dropped exhausted on the parquet flooring before being chauffer-driven home in the wee hours to later be seated at their office desks as their cruel task master slept like a baby till midday, maybe dreaming of further punishments he could inflict on them and his countrymen. If nothing else, life at the "red baron's" court would never be boring, well not for him that is.
Stalin now lay dying, his life ebbing away towards infinity. He had been earlier discovered by a nervous sentry sprawled on the floor after having soiled himself hours before with vomit and caked dribble still exposed around his gaping mouth.
Was he conscious of what was played out before him, almost in slow silent motion? Well, it seems he was for some of the time. Then later he would be hoisted up onto the white sofa and there, before death claimed him, it seems he opened his bloodshot eyes and pointed an accusing crooked finger at those who gingerly stood around watching and waiting (hopefully) for him to depart this world. Yes, death would not be long in arriving to claim him, as it will for all of us, unless the glorious rapture arrives to first take born-again Bible-believers away from this fallen and wicked world.
I have to suggest he was probably murdered to perhaps prevent another terrible 1930s purge of party members and intellectuals. Don't forget: millions would be deported to the gulags where there was always room for one more prisoner to join the ranks, rather like Hell, it seems. I also believe comrade Lavrenti Beria was perhaps the main culprit in assisting with Stalin's demise, perhaps with the drug known as strophanthin, apparently taken from an extracted African root poison and used successfully by African natives to tip their spears and arrows to be used with deadly accuracy on their tribal enemies. Another deadly poison taken from the groaning shelves of the deplorable KGB doctors would be that good old standby warfarin. It seems, however, someone remembered a clear glass of undrunk water sat on the table under a starched linen tablecloth close to Stalin's body. What was the reason for this? Did it perhaps contain some homegrown poison to be used as a backup if the other two failed to do their business, who knows?
As the tyrant lay expiring, none of his chosen politburo lackeys had been seen to shed a tear at his suffering or even sit with him, or hold or stroke his withered and shaking hand. They certainly did not pray with him but instead stood around the urine-soaked couch, perhaps watching the crawling leeches placed upon the dictator’s face and neck by his nervous doctors in a futile gesture in trying to prolong his expiring life. But it was not to be. Joseph Stalin, the once convicted bank robber and Russia's favourite son, departed on March 5th at 9.50 pm, aged 73. The man who had been arrested over seven times, imprisoned and exiled between 1902 and 1913 for the atheist/communist cause he so passionately believed in, was now no more. The man who had been responsible for the deaths and murders of over ten million of his own defenseless countrymen and women (some suggest this figure to be much higher) was now just a hideous corpse slowly beginning to putrefy and later to be taken away under guard to the mortuary to be prepared to lie in state. Don't these dictators always love this theatre after death for the masses to come and gawp at!
Days after Stalin's assisted demise, Beria was heard to say to his relieved cohorts: "I did it for all of you. I saved everyone from the repressions of the unpredictable insane dictator." Of course, Beria was aware that his own predecessors of the secret police had themselves been arrested and executed. But not for him a speedy exit by a bullet placed professionally in the head. No, he definitely was not to be the next to suffer the same fate. Remember, as a fellow Georgian like Stalin, he knew all too well the fate that waited him in the order of succession. After all, he had personally arranged the scenario of other people’s lives on many occasions. I do not believe he himself wished to recreate again the awful terror of the purges of the 1930s, knowing of course that he himself might just be a victim. No, that would have been too much even for him to prepare and live through. However, he must have gone along with the rapes in Berlin perpetrated by drunken Russian soldiers against 2 million defenseless German women and children. Wicked and shameful, of course, but this was Stalin's personal present to his troops, or "do what thou wilt."
Two victims of this dreadful brutality, were Hannelore Kohl, former wife of ex-German chancellor Helmut Kohl, and her mother, in 1945. At the time, Hannelore was only 12, and after being gang-raped along with her mother, she was then thrown out a window by her Russian culprits, suffering irreparable damage to her back.
With the death of Stalin the country was now leaderless for the first time in nearly thirty years. Yet Beria seems to have quickly filled that communist void, seeing himself as the new "beloved leader." At least temporarily, it seems.
(Stalin "swept" clean away)
On April 3, the innocent Jewish doctors were quietly released from their captivity, many sadly never fully recovered from what they had been subjected to. One doctor remembered that his cruel interrogator "had almost a Jesuit demeanor about him," interesting words don't you think!
On December 23 1953, after months of prison confinement following his sudden arrest, and outflanked by Nikita Khrushchev and others, Lavrenti Beria was executed. However, there have been whispers that he was murdered soon after his arrest. The Beria affair is still a taboo subject in many respects. Maybe after five days’ imprisonment he was executed on the 5th or 6th July by a silver bullet to his forehead, then quickly cremated at the NKVD’s personal crematorium. It must have been kept busy during those terrible Stalin years, with his ashes later being scattered in the Moscow woods. Beria, the man that even Stalin apparently feared, was now no more. He was gone and unlamented, except by his family it seems.
Yet does not Galatians 6:7 remind us, "Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatever a man soweth, that shall he also reap." Beria certainly sowed many wicked seeds in his evil life's work, and always it seems with pleasure, I'm sure!
The 1999 book Who Was My Father by his late son Sergo Beria recalls that his father "often invited dignitaries of the Georgian and Armenian churches to our home... Catholic priests stayed with us on several occasions." I do wonder if these were trained Jesuit agents smuggled into Russia by the well-oiled Vatican underground machine to assist in destabilizing the corrupt Stalin regime even then. But then that would place Beria as a willing tool of the Vatican (would it not?), if indeed he was playing a dangerous double game.
I do find it difficult to get my head around Beria and his motives and personality because "Beria was capable of anything," according to one of his henchmen. The respected Russian writer Ilya Ehrenburg could perhaps write with his Slavic tongue-in-cheek that, "Millions of people still believed that Stalin had had no part in the crimes (gulags, murders, and the terrible great terror) but Beria was universally hated." It seems, therefore, Beria played the unwilling role of "bad cop" against Stalin's "good cop," can you believe?
I can only speculate, perhaps foolishly, of what might have been had Beria survived that bullet and introduced his own personal reforms to a wounded post-Stalin country. It seems to me that Beria might just have been a closet moderniser secretly lurking in one of the many Kremlin closets, rather like shall we say, Gorbachev, I suppose (or Michael the Marked, according to that old fake Nostradamus).
(Beria, deep in thought, maybe contemplating his ghastly deeds)
But times were indeed changing after the nightmare Stalin years and some good times were expected and hoped for. But how would the politburo pimps and psychopaths allow Beria to proceed and at his own pace without losing their own heads? Yet they were already plotting against him. This was especially true of Khrushchev, the simple "hick" farm boy that so many of his colleagues mocked. After his own painless downfall in 1964, he would later be quickly shoehorned out of Soviet history. Again, how the mighty fall!
After Stalin's death, Marshall Laverenti Beria now adroitly morphed into the unexpected Soviet reformer, later implementing if possible the following historical events, if he had survived to implement them (which he didn't):
Here are just a few I offer that he might have arranged or averted:
1. Easing of politburo power.
2. Modernising all failing and much-needed Russian state industries.
3. No Cuban missile crisis with the Kennedy administration.
4. No popular Czech uprising in 1968 or failed Hungarian uprising in 1956.
5. No dividing Berlin Wall or Berlin humanitarian airlift in 1948-49.
6. No Vietnam perhaps.
7. Russia landing of the first person on the moon, or other planets.
8. No dangerous Warsaw pact threat.
9. No iron curtain division that separated families and Christians in post-war Germany.
10. No great terror or purges ever again.
11. All these Darwinist monsters of that previous godless communist politburo and their ilk will one day stand naked and shaking before God’s great judgment at the terrible Great White Throne as mentioned in Revelation: "And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire" (Rev. 20:15).
Or more accusingly reminds all: "And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal" (Matthew 25:46).
So, dear reader, make sure your name is where it should be. Do not lose out, we say, to the gift of eternal life in Heaven. You have been warned.
12. The cruel implementation of the so-called organised great terror. The destruction of so many wasted lives. The fear of so many to be later murdered at this tyrant’s pleasure. In many ways, this was unprincipled Joseph Stalin's lasting legacy, sharpened to perfection by his cunning mind and always with the assistance of Dzerzhinsky, Yezhov, Yagoda and Laverenti Beria, the always ever-compliant director-in-chief of the Soviet dreaded secret police.
13. But perhaps today, does not the ghost of Stalin still lurk intriguingly in the fading pages of modern history books and naturally in and around the Kremlin walls and rooms? Putin today occupies Stalin's office himself. Stalin always seen biting on the stem of his briar pipe, of which he possessed so many and always with great pride. Joseph Stalin the former seminarian and practicing sadist is now domiciled in Hell, awaiting judgment for his terrible sins with so many others of his kind that once strutted upon the world’s 20th-century stage. So easily gone now, of course, but never to be forgotten. But "uncle Joe" always, it rather seems to me, is ever watching and waiting and purring like a deformed Cheshire cat whilst toying with his captured defenceless prey, and always of course searching for any innocent imaginary victims to fuel his own personal paranoia.
"It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment" (Hebrews 9:27).
Beria, Sergo Beria
The Last Days of Stalin, Joshua Rubenstein
Stalin's Last Crime, Brent and Naumov
Stalin, Simon Sebag Montefiore
Gentleman Spy, Peter Grose
Behind Closed Doors, Laurence Rees
WEEKLONG OXFORD OUTREACH AND DAILY BIBLE STUDIES
Sister Helen's following and methodical journal will no doubt be of interest to those reading this month's newsletter.
For one week in February, our small team travelled to Oxford, in the South of England for another outreach, this time in a town that proved to be highly diverse, with academics, students, professionals, working-class and homeless all abounding, plus the usual plethora of languages heard on every corner.
This was probably the outreach with the most interaction, something we thoroughly enjoyed, as our wish is to reach as many as possible with the true gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. After an initial try at a spot on the main pedestrian street in the town center, we found another place some meters down.
This new spot was right at the foot of the tower where the famous Anglican bishops Latimer, Ridley and Cranmer were imprisoned and tortured as part of the persecution of Protestants during the reign of the Catholic monarch Mary I of England in the 16th century. Very nearby, Brother James was able to shoot some video of Patrick and Martin commenting at the very site where these men were burned at the stake, and it was rather emotional to remember martyrs who stood against Romanism.
(Angry person rips up one of our tracts)
Despite the very cold weather (-1 to +3ºC) and occasional snow flurries, the street was well trafficked and the situation was truly ideal, with relatively good shelter from wind and close to a number of spots for warming up quickly.
As usual, we found that only about 10% or 20% of passersby accepted a tract, but many people had a good look at the banner, some made brief comments, some just glanced and then looked away disgusted or embarrassed, and a few took pictures. One man snapped a shot and shook his head, but we just laughed quietly and hoped he put it on Twitter where more would see it!
In this outreach, we were especially mindful of several great verses in I Corinthians 1: "For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God (v. 18)... But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling block, and unto the Greeks foolishness (v. 23); Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men (v. 25)... But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty" (v. 27).
A number of people politely refused a tract, saying they were Christians, believers or church-goers. Our habit has been to gently urge them to read it and pass it on to someone else if they like it, and most were agreeable to the suggestion.
One of the most surprising encounters was for brother Patrick to meet the conservative English journalist Peter Hitchens (brother of the famous and late atheist Christopher Hitchens). Peter is probably the last true conservative in the UK mainstream media, and we enjoyed a very congenial conversation on 20th century trends and the current state of society, and he kindly received a gospel tract from us too.
We had a couple of very interesting and more confrontational situations, one with a man who disliked the banner and said the message was inappropriate. Although he ran roughshod over James' attempts to explain that "repent" was one of the first public commands of the Lord Jesus and to encourage the man to read the Scriptures to see that repentance is indeed required, the discussion did last for several minutes and our only prayer is that he will be convicted enough to actually get into the Bible and read the Lord's words for himself to see where he is wrong.
We also met a young, rather derisive Jewish man who did not like the idea of Hell. In fact, his very first comment was, "What is this all about?" We told him about the Messiah, Jesus Christ, to which he replied, "He [the Messiah] hasn't come yet. So, if I die now, will I burn in hell?" His nonstop stream of challenges and questions meant that the reply, "Well, are you a sinner?" went unheard, but James made every attempt to quote Isaiah 53 and Psalm 22 and to request this young Jew's interpretation of these passages, but he kept insisting that Messiah had not yet come, stating that Jesus did not bring peace and therefore could not be the Messiah. We tried our best to speak truth and challenge his thinking, but in the end we had to draw things to a close. His parting comment was: "So, I’m going to need a fire blanket where I’m going?" Again, our only prayer is that he will take a careful look at the Old Testament Scriptures which speak of Messiah. It would not be the first time that someone has examined the Scriptures to prove them wrong, but came out a repentant and converted believer!
"But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain" (Titus 3:9).
We had a very nice and pleasant conversation with a young Catholic student who said he was taking a first-year theology course at Oxford and described himself as "practicing but exploring." We asked why he was taking the course, and he told us he had hoped to gain further knowledge and get more grounded in his faith. He said that he was surprised to find that most of his fellow-students in the theology course were atheists. We asked if he read the Bible much and he said a little, so we encouraged him to read more, so as to understand salvation by grace through faith alone. This man said the Council of Carthage decided on the canon, but we explained that early translations and early church fathers' quotations of Scripture demonstrate that the canon was known and acknowledged well before the 4th century and, therefore, Catholics cannot make such a claim. We were also able to broach the topic of Bible versions and the importance of the issue, something he was not aware of.
We also met several people who said they were believers but had some rather ecumenical or charismatic views. One young American student at Oxford was quite enthralled with Thomas Aquinas and we tried to explain that it was not wise to study this mystic or to get entangled with Catholic theologians, as we are called to be separate and because truth plus error is a dangerous combination.
Another young man was in some kind of Christian group and said it was best to evangelize in fellowship groups and that he found that many students were from broken homes and apathetic but searching. He said an existentialist had joined their group, whatever that meant. He did take some tracts and we hope he will think further about the gospel and how it impacts people.
Patrick had a very good conversation with a young couple. The young woman had received help from a Church of England (C of E) chaplain and couldn't understand that his kindness and help were good works but of no value for salvation, and that he was sorely lacking in assistance in the word of God and with salvation, but it was a pleasant encounter and hopefully they will look into the issues more.
Brother Enrique had a rather interesting conversation with a young foreign man who kept answering questions with more questions to elicit a gospel explanation. This man never explained his position and was a bit too confrontational. Enrique later saw him in the grocery store, and was told, "I was just testing you to see if you had the right gospel," an attitude we found rather puzzling.
We did meet other believers, some of whom are local and seem to be making some sort of effort in the town to evangelize. One young man was very clear and immediately told us: "Yes, I’ve repented of my sins and believed on the Lord Jesus Christ!" Wow, what a refreshing thing to hear!
Brother Patrick met an older man, a retired librarian who was confused about religion and said, "I'm ready to die. I've had enough." He did say he reads the Bible as well as other books. Patrick gave him a bookmark with Bible verses (Acts 4:12) and told him, "Do me a favour. Keep this in your current book and read it every night before you go to sleep."
Patrick also spoke with a young man training to be an Anglican vicar and told him he needed to get out of it, that it was just another link to Rome, but this man seemed still too interested in pursuing his career and not understanding the need to follow the Bible alone.
Sister Helen had a nice conversation with a young girl from Spain, who was in England to work and to study English and was able to explain some of her testimony, give her some tracts and encourage her to read the Bible.
Sister Tantri had a brief conversation with a Jewish person who refused her tract. Tantri mentioned that Jewish people also need to get saved and James added, "Jesus was Jewish," but there was little reaction to that wonderful statement.
Another lady told us she was C of E but currently attending a Quaker meeting, but she had no understanding of what being born again was and didn't seem overly interested in understanding it either. She said the Bible was old and not pertinent, but didn't react when we said that Jesus had told us that we must be born again.
We met another man who said he had been Presbyterian but converted to Catholicism three years earlier. We tried to explain the difference between salvation by grace, that either you pay or the Lord Jesus pays, but not both, and that a person cannot pay because the debt is infinite, hence why Hell is forever.
Sister Helen was able to give a Chinese tract to an elderly Chinese lady who was extremely happy to see us on the streets. It was very hard to converse and her English was limited to hello and thank you, but it was so pleasant to meet someone so appreciative of the street work.
Helen also had a strange encounter with a Catholic lady who told her she (Helen) had left the RCC due to disappointments in people. Despite Helen’s insistence that she had already understood at age 12 the futility of "mediation" by Mary and the saints, this lady emphatically stated her opinion, telling her that Blackfriars Hall had mass at 6:30 and she would pray to the Blessed Virgin that we would go!
One 12-year-old boy took a tract, but immediately said, "God doesn’t exist" and tore up the tract, throwing it on the ground (please see picture at the top). Our mouths dropped open and we wondered what kind of background he must have to be so hateful at such a young age.
had many other brief conversations, and clearly had to stay on our toes. It is practically
impossible to prepare enough, as each comment or question is unpredictable. We hope
to have done our best and we are confident that the Lord will bring fruit through
His word. Here are some highlights (our replies are shown in parentheses and italics):
"I'm already a Christian."
(Oh really? Have you been born again?)
"(with puzzlement:) Uh, I've only been born once!"
"If Jesus is the Messiah, why do the Jews still exist?"
(There is still a blessing for them)
"Yes, it talks about 3 1/2 years of peace, but it hasn't come yet!"
(It is still future).
"Why do you believe in the King James? It's 500 years old. It was because Henry XIII wanted to divorce his wife."
(No, the King James was translated many years later).
"You should take that (banner) down. It's very contentious."
(It's the word of God)
"I don’t care. Keep it to yourself."
"Jesus is not the most important person in history."
(Yes, He is. He saved my life and I'm eternally grateful).
"No, it's Confucius and Buddha."
"Repent? That just means have another think."
(No, it means change your thoughts about your sin)
"No, sorry, I don’t think I will."
(Bible tract? Are you born again?)
"I'm already born again. I don't need one."
(You could pass it on to someone else)
"No, don't want to."
Here are a sampling of the one-liners we heard as people rushed by:
"No, WE pay the price!"
I have another one?"
"No, I don’t want your rubbish."
"I only want your card if it has your phone number" (to a sister).
"I believe in Satan."
"No thanks, I'm a Muslim."
"I’m a Christian in the morning but not at night" (from an alcoholic).
"You're doing a good work. God bless what you're doing" (from a couple in their 80s).
"I need to check that out"
"How do you know the Bible is true? How do you know that's what Jesus said? You're misleading people."
"I don’t want to perish."
"You're wasting your time with me, luv."
"I worship Satan."
"Where I'm going, there’s no one that can save me."
"I’m always repenting."
"Please, could you give me one?" (from a young man who came back to us).
"No, we're Catholics for Christ" (two young Franciscan monks).
On top of daily street work, we also letter-boxed many tracts and worked outside the local train station (sometimes twice daily).
James also did daily (sometimes twice daily) Bible studies, which God willing, will be uploaded in March.
In total, we estimated that we gave out around 1300 OT prophecy postcards, 700 verse bookmarks and over 1000 credit-card tracts, plus 100 other miscellaneous tracts in English and other languages. We also guessed that the banner was seen by at least 25,000 or 30,000 people, all despite the freezing weather.
(Some of our new bookmarks)
Our apologies for such a long report...but every encounter was a real gem! The outreach proved to be very successful, albeit different than we expected. No one mentioned creationism or anything remotely academic, but we felt it was very fruitful.
We have wished to share our many experiences to show that the Lord is working to reach many, that the comments and questions vary widely and are unpredictable, that it is impossible to be entirely prepared, that this leads us to depend in faith on the Lord's provision of words in our mouth, and that it is just better to get busy and to do something!
To our dear sisters and brothers who read this: you will be enormously blessed as you do something and you will find the Lord's strength in your weakness, as the gospel "is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek” (Romans 1:16)! Amen and amen.
"Brother James, I have taken the through-the-Bible studies and have made my own playlist from them. My brother, I am very blessed by them. I listen to them every day. I am almost through Acts and I am learning more and more every day. Thank you for your faithfulness my brother for sound doctrine and teaching. Maranatha brother. It won’t be long now. Our redemption is drawing nigh my friend."
"I truly enjoy your videos. Thank you. I can't find anyone here in the USA that thinks like you. So sad, so painful. May the Lord continue to bless you and your work."
"God bless you James - your Godly persistence in preaching the gospel has saved me. Praise His Name!"
"Hi James, I wanted to get in touch to show my appreciation for you and the lengths you are going to save other people. I was introduced to your YouTube channel by my dad several months ago and honestly for the first few months I found it so hard to understand but you break it down so well I feel you've had a big part in opening doors for me, I've made so many mistakes in my life and it's through my dad, my husband and through the blessings of people like you that I can turn my life around and give it meaning. I find the way you deliver your sermons so inspiring, I'd love to hear you speak at conferences and so would dad and my husband. I was listening to your Corrupt Minds video. I would have loved to show my support, I'm not all that far from Bolton I'm near Manchester, so if there are places there where you speak I would like to come along, blessings."
"Dear brothers in Christ, I found you today for the first time and I am overjoyed. Awesome is our Father for the work He is doing through all of you. The beauty of nature displayed on your videos make me cry! Many thanks for sharing them."
"You have no idea how much your verse-by-verse bible study has meant to me. I daily look so forward to another in-depth lesson. God is transforming me inside as I have dedicated myself to consistent and serious study of the word. I have searched so long for a true verse-by-verse Bible study. I can't get enough! Thank you for your dedication in bringing us these studies. My prayers always, for you and your wonderful ministry."
You can write to us at the following address:
Thank you and maranatha!