Since our last newsletter, our Lord has blessed me with the cherished opportunities to preach the glorious Gospel in outreach meetings in Florida, Louisiana and Alabama! Friends, there is no greater privilege than to be the proclaimer of the ‘bad news and the good news’, (either in a corporate setting or a personal witness), when the Spirit of God miraculously pierces the hearts of men and women! For what occurred at Pentecost, in relationship to the conversion of sinners, is not an exception to the rule. For a saving encounter with the Lord Jesus Christ always involves a supernatural and miraculous ‘stabbing of the Spirit’ in the human heart! I am thinking of three men in their 40’s, who are presently giving precious evidence, that they have recently been graced with a ‘spiritual heart transplant’. As I concluded a sermon from Luke 15 in a recent meeting, I encouraged anyone in the audience, (whose heart was being pierced with conviction and contrition), to please feel free to approach me or other counselors, if they needed to speak with someone concerning their soul. As I proceeded to the back of the room, I noticed that there was a middle-aged man who was weeping and wailing in an uncontrollable way! He was so broken and contrite of heart that he literally could not speak. So, I briefly rehearsed both the bad news and the good news with him. I urged him to seek the Lord while He may be found. I pleaded with him to call upon the Lord, while He is near. I reminded him that he must forsake his self-centered ways and turn to the Lord Jesus. I expressed to him, that he is commanded to place his personal faith in what Jesus has accomplished alone, to both forgive his sins and to clothe him with the robe of Jesus’ imputed righteousness. All this man could do was to nod his head, as he continued in this unrestrained weeping. There were also others, who were seeking to speak with me about their souls. So, after a bit of time, I left him to himself and to the Spirit of God, while encouraging him to repent and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. A few days later, God opened another opportunity to speak with this same man. On this occasion, he introduced himself as Patrick. He commenced testifying to me saying, “The Lord has saved my soul! He has forgiven my sins! He has graced me with eternal life! Bro. Ed, the morning that you preached the message on the prodigal son, I realized that my so-called ‘profession of faith’ in the past was both empty and false. I saw my wicked heart as it truly was. I was shattered over the truth that God the Son was baring my sins in His body on the cross. The Holy Spirit brought that conviction, contrition and conversion, (which you were preaching about), to my heart and life! It is absolutely a miracle that the Lord brought you into my life. For I too am a professional drummer, just as you were. My life story is exactly like yours, before the Lord changed your heart and life! Bro. Ed, I know that the Lord Jesus has saved this prodigal and transformed my life!”
He immediately responded, “That is exactly what I have just done!” John was testifying that he had come to know that godly sorrow, which produces repentance leading to salvation! Over these last few weeks, I have had a couple of further opportunities to speak with John, following his conversion experience. Only a few nights ago, John spent almost an hour with me, glorifying God and magnifying Jesus, for the Spirit’s life-transforming work in his heart. He was rejoicing over the truth that the Spirit of God had mightily pierced his heart, to reveal his guilty and lost condition to him. He was magnifying Jesus for the reality that the Spirit of God had applied the healing balm of the glorious Gospel to transform his desperately wicked heart into a new heart of flesh! He closed by saying to me, “Bro. Ed, I want to take this message to everyone. For all of my family and friends need to hear the only message which can transform their hearts and lives.” Dear friends, John is presently equipping himself to testify to others, concerning what he has ‘seen and heard’ in the glorious Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ!