Joel of Jerusalem Apr/May 1979
Man is never sure of himself. What he says today, tomorrow he changes his mind about. Some people are sorry for this fault, and that is good. But others see only the black side of things, and they will not turn from their ways.
Let me tell you why I have said this. Near me there lives a happy couple. She is about sixty years old and he about sixty-two. I visit them from time to time, and the husband always wants to talk about the world problems. On a recent visit I tried to speak about the Bible but he said, “Please, the Bible is very far from me and I don’t like to speak about it.” I told him, “You must realize that you are no longer a child. Today you are here, but tomorrow you may lose your life. I do not mean only the body, which is nothing, but you may also lose the most important thing, your soul.”
The wife was always much different. She had gladly received a Bible from me and was very interested to know about eternal life. I read Psalm 23 to her ending with, “I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.” The husband asked, “Do you want to die now just to receive this everlasting life?” I replied, “Everything comes in its own time. It is written in the Bible that the Lord gives and the Lord will take away, blessed be His name. When my time comes to die, I will not be sorry because I know in whom I have put my trust.”
He then said to his wife, “Do you see how crazy he is? He puts his trust in the Bible.” “Oh no,” I responded, “I don’t put my trust in the Bible but in God.” This statement made him very unhappy, and he took the Bible which I had given to his wife and cast it out the window. Then he said, “Now your faith is out!” “No,” I replied, “I have my faith with me in my heart. You can cast away many Bibles, but you can do nothing against me. You are really fighting only against yourself. Your wife has received the Lord and she will have eternal life. I also believe with all my heart that, even after all you have done, the Lord will forgive you. The way is always open to you.” He then began to shout. “What? Go! Go away from here! Who are you to speak about my future? My wife will not receive your Bible or your faith. Never! Never!”
His wife then quietly said to me, “I do believe and I know I have everlasting life.” Before I left I told her, “You don’t have to believe everything I have told you. You have a free choice, but if you will pray to our Father in heaven, He will show you the right way. He will show you what to do.” She replied, “Thank you, and I will do that. I am sorry that my husband didn’t want to believe this also.” I replied, “It is written, ‘The just shall live by faith.’ ”
And so I left the home, but not before the husband told me, “I don’t ever want to see you here again! Not ever!” I was not surprised at this, because it was not the first time he had spoken to me in this way. On my way home, I prayed for him, but I especially gave thanks to the Lord for the wife who had received the Lord.
Several days after my visit, I received a telephone call from this man who had sent me away from his home by shouting. He said to me, “Please come quickly to me. My wife died two days ago. I am sure that she is at Home, but I must see you.” This was a distress signal, so I immediately left everything and went to him. “I’m here,” I said as I arrived at his home. “Oh my dear man, I love you, please forgive me,” he cried. “Please believe me, I have nothing against you. That is all in the past. I’m alone in this world now. What can I do? Who will be with me now?”
I answered, “There is only one Person who can help you.” “Who?” he asked. “The Lord, our Saviour,” I replied. “If you will put your trust in Him as your wife did, you will no longer be alone.” He then said, “I cannot believe because I cast away the Holy Bible.” “The Lord is a God of love,” I assured him. “He will never reject you. You can see it all here in the Bible, which before was so far from you.” I then read to him Jeremiah 31:31 to 35, so that he would know that everyone can have the chance to go to heaven if he will give his heart to Him.
He talked to me as a small child and was very hungry to hear God’s Word. He wanted to know more and more about Him, and time was not important. No one had come to comfort him after his wife’s death, and he was embittered. He continued to say, “Please help me, I am so alone. You can come to my home whenever you like.” I said, “If you will receive the Lord, you will never be alone. You can speak with Him at anytime, as with a best friend – even as with a Father. What more could you want? The Lord has said, ‘Fear not, for I am with thee.’”
He begged, “Please come to see me everyday. You are welcome, I promise you that I will never do what I did before.” “If you will promise this to God,” I told him, “He will forgive you.” He was very sorry for what he had done and said to me, but I told him, “All is forgiven and forgotten. Now, I beg you, open up a new life for yourself, a life that is full of light.” He gladly received what I told him.