Sometimes we’re tempted to think that the gospel was somehow more effective in the days of the Apostles but not in our day. We look at people who are living lives that are far away from God and we think “Nothing could change him!”. But when we do that we’re forgetting the power of the Word of God. By His Spirit God can do whatever he wants in a person’s life — think of the Apostle Paul, think of yourself!
I was recently shown the following excerpt from a book “Midst Volcanic Fires” written by Maurice Frater, a missionary to the New Hebrides [Vanuatu] in the early 20th Century:
Daily experiences soon made us recognize that the old Gospel was as potent and as true to its transforming record in the New Hebrides as it was in the Apostolic age. The classic story of Paul’s conversion was being paralleled in the history of our own converts. In the village adjoining the mission station a native teacher was proclaiming the Gospel of peace and love to a group of his fellow-islanders. A notorious man, the chief of the district, and a terror to the neighbourhood, was passing by. He was a bold, hardened leader in all iniquity. He paused and listened, and that wondrous message reached his heart. Toa, the intrepid warrior, there and then embraced Jesus Christ as his Lord and Saviour. The heathen chief who would yield to no power on his native island yielded himself to God. A new affection filled his heart, and it produced one of the most wonderful changes that could take place in a human life. Once Toa had a passion for skulls, now he had a passion for souls.
Ever afterwards, Toa proved himself a valiant soldier and a faithful disciple of Jesus Christ. But, perhaps, the most impressive evidence of the change which the Gospel has wrought upon him and his fellow-villagers is the appearance of the public square where, in heathen days, they had their iniquitous feasts and revelled in their hateful dances. It is now covered with a lawn of beautiful green grass ; and in the centre of the square, where once stood the altar of stones for the sacrifices, there now stands a Christian church.
But what about today? Follow this link http://www.christianpost.com/news/african-warlord-who-killed-20000-people-repents-now-christian-evangelist-65550/ to read the story of a former African warlord, who became a Christian in 1996.
The gospel still works — not just for tribal chiefs or African warlords but for ordinary people who need to hear of the extraordinary grace of God.