Holy Spirit Activism

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Micael Grenholm - a Swedish charismactivist residing with the Jesus Army in the UK.

Micael Grenholm - a Swedish charismactivist residing with the Jesus Army in the UK.

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Testimony of Salvation and Healing

Recently on a Jesus Army conference, I shared the brief testimony of a new friend of mine who was recently saved and healed from what seemed to be demonic suppression.

A Church Without Evangelism isn’t a Church

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Pancake Evangelism in Uppsala, Sweden

Why does God not take us to Heaven immediately after we’re born again? I was pondering this years ago, and the only reasonable answer I could come up with was: to help others being born again.

We can, and will, worship in Heaven. We can hang around, have a good time, and organize Marquee festivals in Heaven. But we can’t invite others to Heaven when we’re well there.

This is why the Great Commission to make new disciples (Mt 28:18-20) is not just a mission, it is the mission and the primary reason why we even have church.

This is why we need to advertise and tell people about our meetings and events. We need to evangelise and share our testimonies to people we encounter. We need to be present in the public sphere and show an alternative to the consumerism, patriotism and false religions that are already being proclaimed out there. (more…)

A Witch Set Free by Jesus

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Originally posted on Jesus Army’s website.

Swedish speaker and author Désirée Kjellin used to be a witch involved with occultism, but a powerful encounter with Jesus transformed her completely.

“IT’S great that yoga suits you”, the psychologist told Désirée. “I think meditation would be the perfect next step.”

He recommended these practices with good intentions, wanting to promote Désirée’s mental health, but little did he know that he indirectly put her on a very dangerous path.

Désirée’s yoga teacher was a passionate believer in new age, and before long she taught Désirée not just the practices of eastern meditation, but also shamanism, Reiki healing and Kundalini.

Désirée joined her at secret pagan meetings in Swedish forests where people worshipped the moon, as well as interacting with “spiritual guides” who for Désirée were a deceased Native American chief and a Samurai. During deep meditation, they became so real to her that she could physically touch them and speak to them. (more…)

Obeying Jesus Even When You Don’t Feel Like It

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I was talking to a church leader the other day about why they quit doing public evangelism, which reached tens of thousands of people and led many to the Lord and made many join the church. The main reason was that they had even higher expectations on the fruits the street evangelism would bring, and there was even a demanding pressure centrally from the denomination that basically was never satisfied. 25 years of this created a weariness and bitterness which in turned spawned a backlash, making the church quit public evangelism altogether.

The church leader said to me that there are people in the congregation who used to be very skilled in leading people to Christ but that now want nothing to do with street evangelism. They’ll still share the Gospel if they get the opportunity, but they hardly ever get the opportunity. Their anxiety caused by not meeting expectations was cured by lowering expectations to almost zero, and so many of them blamed street evangelism for not being fruitful enough while living a life that from an evangelistic standpoint is close to fruitless.

The emotional pain from almost being forced to share the Gospel with promises for a revival that never came is strong, and understandable. But it’s not a reason for letting people go to hell. As strong as our emotional dislike for an action may be, if the Bible commands it we should do it. As we recognise this and pray for strength to do it, God can heal our emotional scars. (more…)

Words of Knowledge that Led to Salvation

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Kettering

God is so good. Last Sunday I went out on the streets of Kettering with a guitar and some Gospel tracts to invite people to our evening meeting. I met a woman in dark clothing walking with the help of a crutch, who commented how happy I looked when I played. I asked her how she was doing. “Like shit” she said, explaining to me her tough family situation, tragedies in her past and her homelessness.

She then asked me what I was doing and I said that I invite people to a Gospel meeting where there will be worship, Bible study, prayer – and tea. She responded that she doesn’t believe in God – she found it impossible after all the bad things that had happened to her. I gave her a booklet the Jesus Army has printed called The Biggest Issue which asked on the front cover “Where is God when all goes wrong?”

She asked me how I got involved with this church and I explained that I found it on the Internet and came all the way from Sweden to join a training year, living in community and working in one of their Kingdom Businesses. She was really impressed by that kind of commitment to a church. She revealed that she actually carries a cross necklace around in her bag, “I guess I do have a little faith after all.” Then she said that a warm cup of tea would be lovely and decided to go with me to the meeting hall. (more…)

Awakening Europe Managed to Do Something I’ve Never seen Before

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Last weekend Heidi Baker, Todd White, Chris Overstreet and other revivalists were preaching and ministering in Stockholm at the huge charismatic Gospel event called Awakening Europe. Sarah and I were there along with at least 12,000 other Christians hungry for God and the expansion of His Kingdom in Scandinavia. Even though I’m critical to big arenas, church shows, expensive equipment and male dominance the overall impression from the event was very positive since the message was centred on something we are desperately lacking in Northern churches:

The Gospel.

This was without doubt the most Jesus-centred conference I’ve ever been to. The pure Gospel was being preached every night with emphasis on repentance, faith, salvation and being born again. The program booklet proclaimed that Europe shall be saved and that we should believe for 100 million souls over the next ten years. The pause screen in between sessions asked us if we had spoken to someone about Jesus today – something my friend Rebecka Rodriguez calls the One Person a Day Challenge. Swedish church leaders prayed that we once again would become a nation of missionaries.

Most impressively, they managed to get most of the ten thousand attendees out on the streets to preach the Gospel, heal the sick, love the poor and invite people to the event. I have never seen that happening previously. Every time when a Christian conference has had evangelism, it has only been a tiny minority participating while most people do other stuff in the conference or camp area. It has often been viewed as a bonus activity for those especially called rather than as discipleship training for all the saints. (more…)

Why Doesn’t God Make His Existence More Visible?

In the third lecture of my Spiritual Q&A series, I talk about the alleged hiddenness of God. Why doesn’t God make His existence more obvious? Is it because He doesn’t care, or is it because it wouldn’t change our skepticism anyway?

Sex in the Pews

Today I’m starting a new series on my YouTube channel called Radical Bible which aims to do Bible study in a prophetic, profound and a bit provoking way. The first episode is about people having sex in church pews and what to do when ministry gets messy.

The Hiddenness of God: a Charismatic Response

There’s a theological problem known as the hiddenness of God which is sometimes used by atheists as an argument for God’s existence. If there is a God and He cares for human salvation, why isn’t He making His existence more obvious? Why isn’t He putting a neon cross in the sky or stamp every cell with “Made by God” in Hebrew letters? Why is He so silent and invisible if He exists?

Apologists generally offer two responses to this. First, God’s existence is already obvious as it is, the arguments from natural theology are good and atheism is really a position held by a minority on a global scale. Second, we cannot be sure that more people would actually be saved if God’s existence was even more obvious, knowing that He exists isn’t the same thing as building a relationship with Him.

I think those responses are good but would also want to offer a third response – a charismatic one. In the video above you can see how a deafmute boy in Zambia starts to hear and speak. On this page you will find resources on medically verified healings. There you go, evidence for God’s existence.

The atheist may respond that these events have natural explanations that we just don’t know yet. But that’s probably what s/he would say about the neon cross and the “Made by God”-stamps as well. And so there’s no way those kind of atheists will accept the existence of God. But if they’re open-minded, they’ll realise that He isn’t far away from any of us, and He can do convincing miracles in all of our lives.

Worship Song: King of Light

Written and performed by me. No copyright, spread it on, to God be the glory.

Sand and scorching heat
Bloodstain on the street
Tortured and betrayed
Vision starts to fade

All our guilt and sin
Carries He within

King of light
God of life
Crucified
Chokes and dies

Land and heavens shake
For the Kingdom’s sake
Demons flee away
Now that we are saved

All our guilt and sin
Carried He within

King of light
Love divine
Breaks the night
As evil dies

King of light
God of life
Crucified
As evil dies

Fruits of Evangelism

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I’m very happy and very tired. Last Saturday was Walpurgis night which for some reason is a huge thing here in Uppsala, hundreds of thousands of people fill the streets and so it’s a great opportunity for evangelism. We were out with the Pancake church at a central square and ministered to hundreds, and one guy from Morocco came and wanted to get saved. Just like that. He had some extremely bad experiences from Islam and had realized that Jesus is the Way, so we helped him receive Him.

The next day was Sunday, I was organizing the service for our house church and we got a new visitor that I had been in touch with on Facebook. She wanted to be saved as well. We rejoiced, prayed with her and then talked about and answered questions that she had about the Old Testament, God’s character and other religions as we went out to evangelize according to our “Come in, go out” principle.

And then last Tuesday my friend Johannes and myself were invited to a folk school where we got to speak about faith, doubt, atheism and theism for three hours. Johannes has struggled a lot with atheism and I used to be an atheist in my early teens before turning to God. We covered several arguments for God’s existence as well as sharing our own stories and answering questions, and it was appreciated. (more…)

3 Dumb Ways to Explain Away that Jesus is the Only Way

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Today I will hold a Bible study in my house church about the first half of John 14, which of course includes Jesus’ famous line “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (v. 6). Now, there’s been a lot of debate about this verse recently here in Sweden. Bishops in the theologically liberal Lutheran church have had a hard time accepting that Jesus really is the only way to God, and so they have used various techniques to explain away Jn 14:6 – all of which are examples of horrible eisegesis.

1. He didn’t say He’s the only way

This argument has been used by the current archbishop of the Church of Sweden, Antje Jackelén. It doesn’t make any sense. Jesus explicitly says that no one comes to the Father except through Him – how could that not mean that He’s the only way? In fact, as Jesus says that he is the way that in itself shows that He’s the only way, otherwise He would have said a way.

2. Jesus is the way just for us Christians

There is no way this is what Jesus and the early Christians meant. The command to make disciples of all nations and to baptize them in the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit (Mt 28:18-20) clearly asserts that Christianity is the only true religion. As the apostles encounter various different believers in the book of Acts they always evangelize and try to bring them into the church. (more…)

Softening the Gospel Makes it Worse

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Cosy and cute, but does it save my soul?

Every weekend I evangelize on the streets together with the Pancake Church, and last week’s Holy Saturday was no exception. I started to speak with two guys about Jesus, and one of them said that he really liked Jesus. He thought that Jesus was a good moral teacher and said: “I believe that when it says that he healed blind people and lepers and stuff, he didn’t actually physically heal them, but he was kind to them and taught that they should be accepted into society.”

“That’s a very tragic and pessimistic view!” I said. “Wouldn’t it be better if He actually physically healed them? As the Son of God He’s surely able to do it, right? Miracles exist, medically verified healings happen all around the world even today. Surely that’s good news, isn’t it?” He was actually a bit speechless when I said this.

There has been a tendency among several Western preachers to de-emphasize miracles, Heaven and evangelism in order to “focus” on peace and justice. They may say things like “Jesus greatest miracle wasn’t to heal the leper but to touch the leper” or “God doesn’t just want to give you eternal life in Heaven but a descent life on earth.” (more…)

Song: Welcome

The World is often a hostile place, but Jesus is constantly welcoming and commands us to be hospitable. This song is written and sung by me, guitar by Andreas Lundström.

Welcome homeless people, welcome to my house
It’s warm inside and I got food and I’ll never kick you out
I’m sorry that my countrymen just let you starve and freeze
The world outside is hostile but you’re welcome to me

I bid you welcome, welcome, welcome to me
I love you and I want you here so please come to me

Welcome refugees, bring your families
Welcome to my country where there’s welfare and peace
I’m sorry that the racists promote inequality
But I will fight for your right to stay ’cause you mean a lot to me

I bid you welcome, welcome, welcome to me
I love you and I want you here so please come to me

Welcome unbelievers, welcome to our church
We offer healing, eternal life and a bunch of other stuff
We’re sorry that we Christians often behaved like piles of sh*t
But Jesus rocks and His Spirit rules so please pay us a visit

We bid you welcome, welcome, welcome to us
We love you and we want you here so please come to us

Welcome Holy Spirit, welcome to my heart
I need your power, strength and love, ‘less I’ll just fall apart
I’m sorry for my egoism and sinful lusts and deeds
I want to serve like Jesus so please, Spirit, wash me clean

I bid you welcome, welcome, welcome to me
I love you and I want you here so please come to me

Welcome my beloved, says almighty God
Welcome to my Kingdom that awaits you in the clouds
You won’t feel sorry any more when I wash away your tears
You’ll be with Me forever, no more days or months or years

I bid you welcome, welcome, welcome to me
I love you and I want you here so please come to me 

Podcast: Why Eschatology and Eternity Are Important

A new MennoNerds Podcast episode has been released! It’s on eschatology, Heaven and hell and started off in our vlog as a conversation on waiting and patience, which made me think about waiting on the second coming of Christ and the glorious heavenly realm that He will bring:

Deborah followed it up talking about two things that Heaven is and two things it’s not:

And Paul started to talk about hell and three different theological views on its nature: eternal conscious torment, annihilationism and universalism:

(more…)