Daily Journal of Life in Honduras in 2004

 

January 1st 2004 Thursday                               Noche de Bolos (Night of the Drunks)

                       

                I awoke this morning with gladness in my heart and the joy of the Lord upon my breast!  How great it was to have another year to tell others about the Lord Jesus Christ and how to go to Heaven!  But that joy was quickly drowned out when it came time for service in the evening.  When I picked up the people for services, I found that many of the older teenagers were "drunker than Kooter Brown!"  This did not set well, but I took them to services anyway, for I had brought a "pelicula" (movie) about a man named Ricardo Garcia who was a sap drunk before he came to Jesus Christ.  After being saved, he traveled to many different villages in Mexico and started over 60 churches, while distributing more than 10,000 bibles to the Indian people.  The movie showed the hopelessness of his life as a drunk, and the great change that took place after he trusted the blood of Jesus Christ to save his immortal soul.

                Rather than convict of sin, the movie had the opposite effect.  The drunks began laughing through the whole thing, and thought it was funny.  When the motion picture ended, I preached to them, and told them that only Jesus Christ could save their souls from a devil's hell!  One young man pulled out a cigarette and began smoking.  When I saw it out of the corner of my eye, I turned and pointed at him and said, "Where will you spend eternity?  Heaven or Hell?  SMOKING, or Non Smoking?  He quickly put it out.  I spent the rest of my time putting my finger in the face of every drunk telling them, "If you don't repent and trust the blood of Jesus Christ to save your soul, you'll burn in Hell for all eternity and you won't be laughing there, rather crying, but you'll shed no tears, as their will be no water in Hell!"

                This seemed to calm them down some, and the only hope I have is that they will remember what I said when they become sober, and God will convict them of their sin.  When I closed the service, I had a word of prayer.  As I was praying, I noticed a drunk "relieved himself" in the presence of everyone right there on the ground.  I guess he thought when I said, "bow your head and close your eyes" that no one would see him.  (How barbarous are the heathen!)

                Then I took the drunks home.  They were laughing and shouting the whole way.  When they exited my vehicle, I told them, "From now on, no drunks are allowed to come to service.  You all are not serious about God, and are distracting the others that are.  If I come here again to pick you up, and you are drunk, I will leave without you!"  Then I drove back up the hill to take the rest of the people home. 

As I was driving, I asked little Olga, "And why doesn't your mother come to service?"  Her reply was "Because she has to work."  I then questioned, "And your father?  Why doesn't he come?"  She responded, "He said he wants to, but every time he decides to come, he says that something pulls him back, and he hears a voice that says, 'Don't go to that service!'  So he doesn't come."  I then said, "That must be a demon.  We should pray for him, no?"  She then agreed.  (For we wrestle not against flesh and blood...)

So ended the first day of the New Year.  I can only pray that it was not an example of how the rest of the year will go.

 

January 2nd  2004 Friday                                   More Bad News

 

                At ten this morning, Bro. Thomas Sweeney and Rich Fischer came by to visit with me.  They told me that Bro. Mike Lane will not be coming back today as he was supposed to, but rather will stay in the U.S. for another month at the least.  Further, they stated that his "Mission" has told him to "close down" the work at the Baptist Camp until he does return (if he returns).  This made me a bit angry.  I asked, "Why would a Mission do such a thing?  Don't they care about souls?"  Their reply was, "Well, I don't know.  But the Mission has mandated that the Camp not be used for services."

This is why I don't believe in "Missions" or "Mission Boards" having authority.  They don't have a clue what's going on in the field, nor do they have a Biblical right to control things.  Nor should they "close down a work."  This is simply not Biblical, nor "Christian."  I believe Paul said it best in 1 Cor. 9:12, when he said, "If others be partakers of this power over you, are not we rather? Nevertheless we have not used this power; but suffer all things, lest we should hinder the gospel of Christ."  Even Paul knew that for someone other than the Holy Spirit to have authority over a Missionary or his work could and would "hinder the Gospel." 

                At any rate, Bro. Tom suggested that I continue the work, but here at my house.  I replied, "That is an excellent idea!"  And this is what I have determined to do.  Rich also agreed that this would be fine with him.  Thus, Sunday we will have service for the last time in the Baptist Camp, and after that I will do my best to carry on the work here at my house.

                We also talked about how most of the people coming anyway are children.  This has caused a problem, and has made many people think that the services were only for children.  Bro. Daniel further aggravated the situation by saying last Wednesday night that "we are here for the children!"  I corrected him when I came to the pulpit to preach by saying, "This is not here just for children!  We want everyone to come and hear the word of God, adults included!"

                Pondering upon this after Tom and Rich left, Hotir came by and I gave him the news.  We discussed the possibility of having services on Tuesday and Friday nights as we have been doing, but for adults only.  And then having regular services for both adults and children.  This sounds like a great idea.

                The only concern I have is what will happen if Mike Lane returns.  Will he accuse me of "stealing his flock."  If so, then so be it.  But I just can't leave all these hungry people out on their own when they are willing to come and listen to the word of God!

 

January 3rd  2004 Saturday                              Children, Luis, and Chess

 

                The children came today for services at two o'clock.  This was quite unexpected.  But I prepared a message quickly, and then joined them in the garage.  We sang hymns for about twenty minutes, and their voices were simply melodious.  I don't know if their voices have changed, or if they've been practicing, but I got goosebumps hearing them sing "Victory in Jesus," "Amazing Grace," and others in Spanish.  I suggested we record them singing sometime and then I'll make copies for their family.  They liked that idea.

                In the afternoon, Luis came by and worked on Bro. Mike Lane's van that is still sitting in my yard.  He knows a lot about electricity, and he traced all the wires to see if there were getting power.  He concluded, as I did, the problem is between the battery and the ignition, but he was unable to fix it.

                Later Julio's kids came over and we played Soccer until the sun went down.  Afterwards we played Chess.  I lost all three games.

 

January 4th 2004 Sunday                                   Last Service in the Baptist Camp

 

                In services I told the people about Missionary Mike Lane and his "Mission" not allowing them to hold services in the Baptist Camp.  They were very disappointed.  So, I asked them if they wanted to hold services at my house.  They said they would like to.  So Wednesday we will start services in my garage.  I pray that the people will come.

                Afterwards, I preached a message from Matthew chapter twenty-three entitled, "Are You a Hypocrite?"   My points were, Are you a hypocrite in your:  1.  Vida? (Life)  2. Vestuario? (Dress)  3.  Vela? (Watch for the Lord's coming).

 

January 5th  2004 Monday                 Off to Tegus

 

                While I was driving to Tegucigalpa this morning, I pondered upon the awfulness of sin, and the sheer evil found in the world today.  I finished the entire Bible last year, and now I'm in the book of Genesis again.  As I'm reading, it's amazing to me how wicked the world was in Noah's day, and yet how much grace the Lord had upon them.  God said they were so wicked, ungodly, and perverse that he would destroy them (Genesis 6:7) for their most pernicious deeds (Gen. 6:5).  But how merciful and gracious is the Lord in giving them 120 years if perchance they would repent (Gen. 6:3).  And in his merciful love, he chose Noah, a preacher of righteousness (2 Peter 2:5) to save from out of that ungodly wickedness, and then give him the earth as his reward for doing right in the midst of a most perverse and malignant generation.  Boy, that helps me!  For we live in very wicked day and age now.  If it's not worse than the time of Noah, it's at least almost there.  And I'm thankful that I too found "grace" in God's eyes (Genesis 6:8) on July 29th, 1992 and that when his judgment falls on this earth (i.e. in the tribulation), that I'm going to be safe in the ark of his love, and raised up above this mess (in the rapture)!  Matthew 24:37 says, "But as the days of Noe were, so also shall the coming of the Son of man be."  What a great promise, and it doesn't discourage me a bit to see the world getting worse. If anything, it makes me excited because I know that we are that much closer to the Lord's return!

                As I was reading chapter eleven of Genesis, I found this truth further buried in the types of scripture.  It was there that Lot is first mentioned, and in Luke 17:28 we are told that as in the days of Lot, so shall it be in the days when the Son of man comes.  Well, Lot was first mentioned in a chapter that begins with the formation of a "one world government without God" (Babel).  Later in chapter thirteen, Lot is found living in a place with a bunch of "Sodomites."  I see the same thing today with the Bilderberger's, United Nations, etc., trying to take over the world and bring in a "New World Order, and the steady increase of evil (Gen. 13:13) "Homosexuals" in this world.  The Lord must be ready to come soon (Luke 17:28).  Even so come Lord Jesus!

                The more I thought on these things, the more I began to try to think about how God viewed all of this.  The world is not only "ungodly" but they are against God and actively hostile towards him.  If I were God, I don't think I would be as graceful and merciful, for the more transgressions I saw in the world; the more depressed I would become.  That's my problem now.  So often I get discouraged looking at how bad the world is, rather than looking at how good my God is.  So, reading the first 13-14 chapters of Genesis really strengthened me and helped me to look above rather than looking at everything down here below.

                As I pondered upon these thoughts, I found myself stuck behind a slow moving bus.  Unable to pass on the curvy, winding, mountainous roads, I kept noticing someone stick their head out of the back left window and regergetate onto the street.  This happened on three occasions, and by that time, my windshield was peppered with little drops of vomit as they splattered off the road.  Immediately I remembered my old Bible Institute friend's saying of, "Half the world is sick, and the other half is puking!"  Truly, the world is sin-sick (they have a spiritual problem and need the cure – Jesus Christ), and many are physically sick as well.

 

January 6th  2004 Tuesday                                Alexis!

 

                All morning I waited at the Cancer Center for my dentist to come and clean my teeth.  Unfortunately, she never showed up.  So, I drove up the road to Church's Chicken and met Bro. Baker for lunch.  Alexis was there as well, and we had a good time of fellowship.  Afterwards, I took Alexis with me to Pricesmart and we bought groceries before heading home to my house in La Esperanza.  He will be with me for the next two weeks, and I'm looking forward to his help, fellowship, and conversation.

                Upon our arrival in La Esperanza, I immediately went to Bro. Thomas Sweeney's house to drop off his mail.  While there he told me that he'd heard from Mike Lane's Mission, and that he won't be coming back for another three months at the least, and then his "Mission" will have a conference to decide if he should indeed come back to Honduras or not.  

                For a few more minutes we made "chit-chat" with "El Gigante" ("the Giant" as the children here call him because of his size), and then journeyed up the street to unload and prepare for our evening Bible Study.

After putting away all the groceries, Julio's kids came over and we studied from chapter one of the second epistle of Paul to the Thessalonians.  I taught them for over an hour, and we only made through five verses.

 

January 7th  2004 Wednesday                          Our First Service At My House

 

                Sickness set in again today.  I feel awful.  I must have what they call "gripe" (a cold).  Alexis and I studied a bit last night about the different Bible versions.  Afterwards we called it a night and went to bed.

                This morning I spent my time studying, as did Alexis.  Afterwards, we did some visitation and visited different people in the neighborhood to invite them to service in the evening.

                Fifteen minutes before five, only two kids had come, and I found myself discouraged.  I had to drive up the road and pick up a lady who said she'd be bringing another visitor with her.  However they weren't home either, and this added to my downtrodden state.  As I drove the five minutes home, I thought "Well, I guess that I'll never be able to start a church here."  The closer I arrived towards home, the more Satan whispered disheartening thoughts in ears.

                But upon my arrival home, I found the yard was full of young boys and girls playing soccer and having a good time.  I also found two adult ladies as well who were eager to hear God's words.

                I preached on "Prayer" from Luke 11:1-4 and Matthew 6:5-13.  I taught them that prayer is: 1. Pensando En Dios (Thinking upon God), 2. Pidiendo De Dios (Asking God for some things), and 3. Platicando con Dios (Talking or Conversing with God).  The adults listened well, but the children were a bit rowdy.  We had 37 people in total, and to me that was a great crowd for a Wednesday night.

 

January 8th  2004 Thursday                              One Saved!

 

                The water does not reach from the well into the house.  It quit working last night.  I thought the problem was the pump, but after revising it, I found that wasn't it.  We finally concluded that the problem was with the pipes from the well to the pump, and left it for another day.  So, this morning started with a bath in a bucket with water I heated on the stove.

                The rest of the day I spent studying and teaching Alexis.  Afterwards, we went to Quebrada de Lajas at two in the afternoon to do some visiting.  Alexis had the privilege of winning a 54-year-old man to Jesus Christ at the first house we entered!

                The last man we visited said he was saved, and that he had trusted Jesus Christ last year listening to me preach in Jose Martir's house.  That was a blessing to hear, and I gave the man a New Testament, and invited him to come to services.

                In the evening, I found myself getting discouraged again when it seemed only children showed up for service.  But after a short while, more adults came in late, until we had over twenty something in attendance.  I preached on "The Terrible Torments of Hell," and God used the message.  I could tell many were thinking, but no one came forward to trust Jesus Christ as their Saviour.

 

January 9th  2004 Friday                                   Problems!

 

                Most of the morning I spent studying.  Afterwards, we walked up the street to visit Don Julio and ask him to show us where the mechanic lived that knew how to fix electrical problems.  I drove and Julio directed me to the man's house in "colonia" (suburb) "El Way" (pronounced El Guay).  The man's name was Rafael Santos, and he did a wonderful job of fixing the van.  Not only did he get it started, but he also diagnosed several other small problems that needed to be fixed in the future.

                I also had Rafael look at the water pump, and he concluded that it was fine.  His opinion was that the problem was with the pipes.  So we cut the two PVC pipes running down to the bottom of the well, and found that the problem indeed was nothing more than the "Sapo" or "Strainer mechanism" used to give the machine the proper suction. 

                After driving Rafael home, we went to several different Hardware Stores to find the parts we needed.  No one had what we desired.  Luckily, or maybe I should say by God's grace and mercy, we ran into a man at one of them that had recently fixed a well exactly like ours, and told us what we needed, and how to fix the problem.

                Unfortunately, however, the stores closed before we could buy all the parts, thus we went home empty handed.  We will have to journey into town tomorrow again to complete our quest for adaptors, strainers, and the suchlike.

                In the evening, I was surprised to see several ladies come to our Bible Study.  They even brought some visitors with them, and we had a great time studying from 2 Thessalonians chapter one.

 

January 10th  2004 Saturday                            Fixing the Well, Services, and Studying

 

                First thing this morning Alexis and I drove into town to buy the parts we needed to fix the well.  We were lucky to find them at a good price, and then we went home and to put everything together.  Praise be to God, we fixed the thing!  And we finally were able to get a nice, hot shower afterwards!

                In the afternoon, the children came again for services.  We sang hymns and then I asked Alexis to preach to them.  He taught them from Matthew chapter nineteen and verses thirteen through fifteen about Jesus telling the children to come unto Him.

                Afterwards, some of Julio's kids came over and we visited in the neighborhood for several hours inviting people to services, and handing out the tract "¿Cómo Puedo Yo Tener La Vida Eterna?" (How Can I Have Eternal Life?)

                In the evening, Alexis and I studied about "Sanctification" and why a Christian should live holy, and be "separated" from the world.  We also talked about "Convictions" and why it is not only important to have them, but also have scripture to back up what you believe.

                       

January 11th  2004 Sunday                               First Sunday Services in Quebrada de Lajas

 

                Thursday night I talked with Jose Martir about starting services on Sunday's in his house.  He said he would very much like us to do so, and we planned to meet at three in the afternoon.  This we did, and had several people show up for services.  I had Alexis preach.  His text was 2 Peter 3:9.  His points were: 1. God is Longsuffering, 2. God is Not Willing That Any Perish, and 3. God wants all to Come to Repentance.

                In the evening service at my house, we had a large crowd.  I preached on "The Precious Promises of God."  My points were that God promised: 1. "Salvar" (To Save all that came unto him) from John 3:15,16;  2. "Suplir" (Supply our needs) from Philippians 4:19; and 3. "Ser Conmigo" (to always be with me) from Matthew 28:20.

                Before bed, Alexis and I studied about "How to Prepare Sermons." 

 

January 12th  2004 Monday                               More Water Problems!

 

                Today we awoke to find that the pump would not pump water into the house again.  The only thing I could think of was that the sucking mechanism (check valve) went bad again.  We had to cut the pipes, and then pull them up out of the well once more.  The problem was that mud and sand had entered the mechanism and completely plugged the pipe. 

                Alexis and I then decided to go to San Pedro Sula to visit Bro. Homero Romero, and buy the parts we needed.  Bro. Homero was forced to move to another house as of late, for his landlord gave him thirty days last November 25th to be out of his house.  So, upon our arrival we went immediately to Bro. German Amaya's house and called Homero to come by and lead us to his new home.  This he gladly did, and when we arrived, we found a very small house, with a big yard.  He invited us in and we conversed for a short time before we were off to town to look for the parts we needed for the well.

                As we drove along, I asked Homero to give advice to Alexis that would help him in the ministry.  Bro. Homero told him his testimony of how he was saved, and how he has been persecuted in the ministry for his stand on the Spanish Bible.  (He uses the 1602 TR instead of the corrupt 1960).  He further continued by telling Alexis how today the "Fundamentalist Movement" has turned into nothing more than an organized "Mafia."  They have become so big that they are more interested in "control" than they are letting the Holy Spirit guide and lead.  They also have become guilty of "Groupism."  They say things like, "If you are friends with so and so, then I can't be your friend" or "If you associate with that crowd over there, then you can't be a part of our camp" or "Oh, you are of that crowd!  We don't fellowship with them!"  Homero's greatest advice to Alexis was "Don't try to please men to get to be a part of their group.  Just do your best to please the Lord Jesus Christ!"

                In the late afternoon, we found all the parts we needed, and said "adieu" to Bro. Homero.  On the way home we ran into a very heavy fog, and had to press on at a snail's pace before we arrived home late in the evening.

 

January 13th  2004 Tuesday                              Alexis' Birthday

 

                Today was Alexis' birthday.  He turned twenty-two.  We spent most of the morning studying about "Dispensations," "The Seven Seven's," "The Seven Periods of Prophecy," etc.  Then we made our excursion into town to check our email, pay the light bill, buy a few things, and more. 

Before heading home, we visited with Missionary Phil Gagnon, whom I found to be a rather pertinacious man.  We only visited with him for a few minutes, but before we left, he told me that I was "wrong" about the 1960 Spanish Bible and that even though he was "King James" and had no problem with it, that I was a little overboard on the issue.  I told him, "Yes, I am a little extreme!"  But to me the most important thing in all the universe are the precious words of the living God.  If a version does not have all the words of God (like the 1960), then it is not God's pure words!  And I'd rather be known as a radical that is standing for God's pure words, than a liberal who tells people that it's perfectly fine to use a corrupt version of the Bible.  The truth is that if you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything!

As we drove home, I explained to Alexis that the problem with most Missionaries is that they've used their 1960 Spanish perversion (Based on the corrupt English RSV and the "Critical Texts" of man) for most of their ministry, and it's much easier for them to call a young man like me a "young whippersnapper" than to admit they are wrong in using a version of the Bible based on the Critical Texts of man during their entire ministry (sometimes 20, 30, or 40 years).  I then said, "Who will tell the people the truth?  And who will give them the pure words of God if most older missionaries don't want to, or don't care about the issue?"  Alexis quickly responded, "You and I will!"

                In the evening, only Julio's kids came for Bible Study, but we had a great time learning from 2 Thessalonians chapter two.  I also taught the boys about being deceived.  I told them, "When a man is deceived, he doesn't know that what he is believing a lie.  He thinks what he believes is really the truth.  But the only truth is God's precious, pure words."  Then I showed them in verse ten, that someone is deceived when he doesn't have a love for God's words.  And in verse eleven, I taught them that God will even send that man who hates God's words a lie to believe, (i.e. The Septuagint is better than the KJV, the "older texts" are better, the Vaticanus and Siniaticus are better than the Textus Receptus, the 1960 is better than the KJV in English, etc.)

 

January 14th  2004 Wednesday                        First Greek Class

 

                Bro. Erick Sanchez came by yesterday while Alexis and I were studying, and said he was ready to start Greek classes.  He wants me to teach every Wednesday morning at eight o'clock.  I told Julio's boys last night about it, and they were very ecstatic about coming as well.  Thus, this morning at nine o'clock (They are on Honduran time, usually they show up an hour or so after the appointed hour) Julio's boys and Erick came for our first Greek class.  I taught them the history of the Greek language, and how it originally entailed three dialects of Doric, Ionic, and Aeolic, and how these eventually merged (through trading with different Greek speaking countries) into what is known as "Koiné Greek" or the Greek of the common man during the time of Christ, and how this "Koiné" prevailed from about 300 B.C. to 500 A.D, and is the language used by the writers of the New Testament.

                Then I taught them the Greek Alphabet in both capital and lowercase.  Also, I showed them how to pronounce the Greek "dipthongs," and a few rules to remember in pronouncing certain letters (like gg which is not pronounced as a "g" but rather a "ng.")  I then spoke about the difference between the "rough breathing" and "smooth breathing" marks.

                Before closing, I told them the purpose of teaching Greek was as follows:

 

That they might know another language, and thus expand their communication abilities.

That they might learn where many of their words come from in Spanish.

That they might have the tools to read both the corrupt "Critical Texts" of Men and the pure Textus Receptus for themselves and know which one is correct.

That they might see for themselves why the new translations of the Bible are wrong!

 

In the evening, we had a good crowd come for Wednesday night service.  I asked Alexis to preach, and he did a fair job of it.  In my judgment he needs much more practice and opportunity.  His preparation was superb in that he preached on "Why should we Come to Church?"  His points were:  1.  Para Alabar (to Worship), 2.  Para Aprender (to Learn), 3. Por Amor (For Love of God).  But his delivery left much to be desired.  However, with practice I do believe he shall do well.

 

January 15th  2004 Thursday                           Losing Our Meeting Place

 

                I slept in this morning, as I am feeling sick again.  When I finally did awake, I spent some time reading my Bible from the book of Genesis.  Afterwards, I taught Alexis about "The Seven Resurrections," "The Seven Judgments," and "The Seven Baptisms."  The rest of the day I spent copying CD's for Bro. Baker.

                When the two o'clock hour rolled around, Alexis and I drove up the road and picked up Raul, Victor, and Lindsey and drove out to Quebrada de Lajas.  There we received some rather interesting news from Blanca (Jose's woman), who told us that the "dueno" (landlord) of the property not only forbid us to have services there, but is also evicting José Martír from his home as well.  Thus, we drove back to La Esperanza and passed out tracts in the market until five, when we returned to talk with José, who had just returned from work.  He told us, "The owner said that he didn't like all the people coming to services, and that he didn't like me looking for work in another place.  Thus, he told us to leave.  We will have to leave soon, but he demanded that we not have services here in his house anymore.  Plus, he threatened to put a lock on the gate of the property if we attempted to do so."  I was crushed!  How could this man do such a thing? 

                José further stated, "Mr. Javier (the landowner) said that if we had not gone against his religion (Catholicism), then he would have taken care of us, and that you would not care for us like he would."  He also told us that the reason that Jose's brother-in-law Ovilio and wife Angelica weren't coming to services was that Javier threatened them that if they came to our services, then they would lose their house as well. 

                Discouraged, I prayed silently to myself asking God what to do.  After talking it over amongst ourselves, we decided we'd have service in spite, but in the street in front of the property gate using only the light from my car's headlights.  I went and visited everyone and told them what happened and they were very unhappy with Mr. Javier.  But they seemed keen to the idea of having service in the street.  We visited several houses of those that are accustomed to coming and told them what had befallen us.  They said they would come for services if we only met in the street, and this they did.  While the cold winter winds blew upon us in the wide, open street, we sang hymns and worshipped God.  Afterwards, I preached a message entitled, "Some Promises of God."  I did not make it past my first point as I preached on God's promises to save a soul from hell and give him eternal life.  It was good to be filled with the Holy Spirit and know that God was using me to say what he wanted them to hear.  Several times I remember thinking after saying something profound, "Where did that come from?" as I had never thought to say such a thing in Spanish before and felt the Holy Spirit speaking through me as a vessel fit for the Master's use.

                On one occasion, I turned around and preached to the house behind us close to the road, which sat in the darkness.  I told them that only Jesus Christ could save their soul from Hell, and that his blood was the only thing that could wash their sins away.  I knew someone was in the house, but didn't know if they were listening.  When I paused, I heard a very hearty, "Amen!" from the darkened corridors within.  This encouraged me to preach on.

                Sadly, no one came forward at the invitation to accept the Lord Jesus Christ as their Saviour.  Eddie, Catalino, Blanca, and others I know are not saved, and unfortunately they decided to put it off for another day.  How sad.

                Thankfully, however, Adrian (another unsaved man) offered us his house to meet in for services.  He said, "I believe that Mr. Javier's God is money, and it's sad that he loves it more than God.  You can use my house, as what little I have, God has blessed me with, and I want for him to use it for his glory."  So it looks like we'll have a place to meet next Sunday and Thursday.  Praise be to God for this!

 

January 16th  2004 Friday                 Study, Cleaning House, and Hector

 

                Alexis and I spent the morning studying about the "Seven Mysteries" in the Bible.  Afterwards we ate a late breakfast and then spent the rest of the day cleaning the house. 

In the afternoon, we received a visit from a young man named Hector, who had visited services on several occasions in Quebrada de Lajas.  I invited him in, and we sat around the table and talked.  He gave us his testimony, which was very strange, and told us that he'd "accepted the Lord Jesus Christ" on two occasions.  He also said that God gave him the ability to "heal" others and "see visions."  Immediately I spotted him as a "Charismaniac" Pentecostal.  But, I held my tongue and let he and Alexis carry on a conversation.  Thankfully I had already gone over the verses with Alexis on why God doesn't use men to heal in this day and age, and how "visions" and "signs" are for Israel.

                When Bible Study time came, several kids showed up, and I taught them from 2 Thessalonians chapter two.  Hector stayed for services, so I used that opportunity to try to show him from the scriptures where he was wrong.  I taught for some time on verse nine about how Satan too can do "signs" and "wonders."  I also preached on why it is important to have the right doctrine and love God's words so that one will not be deceived (verses 10-12).  Hector listened well, and afterwards asked Alexis a few questions about "the right doctrine." 

                Alexis told me later that Hector wanted to return on Monday and visit with us some more.  We shall see if he does.

                       

January 17th  2004 Saturday                            Carlos Finally Accepts the Lord

 

                Both Alexis and I slept in this morning, and awoke feeling sick.  After a wonderful breakfast of beans, eggs mixed with cheese and tomatoes, toast, grapefruit, and fried potatoes we finished our study of the "Seven Mysteries" in the Bible.  The rest of the day we spent resting and trying to recuperate from our illness.          

                In the afternoon nineteen children showed up for services.  I asked Alexis to preach to them, and he preached from Matthew thirteen about the mustard seed, and how it grew into a huge tree in which the birds of the air nested.  He used this parable and applied it to each "niño" as they are now "small" and will some day grow up to be a big tree, and they must make sure they have the proper nourishment to grow healthy and strong in the Lord.

                The children wouldn't leave when Julio's boys showed up for service, so we took them along with us on visitation.  Carlos came as well (the young man who worked on replastering the inside of my house with Salvador), and as we visited several houses, Alexis began speaking with him.  I overheard him say, "You need to carry your Bible with you Carlos, so that you'll be a good testimony!"  I looked back over my shoulder and responded, "But Carlos needs to get saved first!"  Carlos looked down at the ground and walked on.

                A little while later I asked Carlos, "Carlos, why don't you let me show you from the Bible how to be born again?"  His response was, "Okay!"  Thus, we sat down in the grass on the side of the road, and I led him through the scriptures on verses about sin, judgment, hell, and death.  Then I told him the good news with verses about eternal life, Christ dying in his place for his sins, and the importance of faith in the blood of Jesus Christ.  Praise be to God, right there he trusted Christ Jesus as his Saviour!  When we were all done, I asked him, "If you were to die right now and stand eyeball to eyeball with Jesus Christ, and he were to say, 'Why should I let you into heaven?'  What would you say?"  He quickly retorted, "Because of the Blood of Jesus Christ!  And because I'm saved by that blood!" 

                When we finished, I showed him some more verses about eternal security, and what he should do now as a new Christian.  Then we visited a few more houses and called it a day and went home.

 

January 18th  2004 Sunday                               Services

 

                Alexis and I awoke this morning with plans of going to visit Ramon Galeano's church.  I thought it started at 10:30.  But when we arrived, we learned that is when the services end.  They begin at nine.  Thus, we traveled up the cobblestone roads to the Internet place to check our email.

                In the afternoon, we journeyed up the mountain to Quebrada de Lajas for services.  Unfortunately, no one showed up.  We did talk with Adrian's wife though, and she told us of a Baptist work down the road a ways.  We drove down there and found it.  Marbin Rodriguez (a friend of Erick Sanchez) was the one who started it, but no one was coming anymore.  They say he comes at times to encourage the people, but most of them just don't want to come to services.

                The lady who's home in which they met before was very nice.  We spoke with her for a while and invited her to our services on Thursday.  Before leaving, we found that she had one of the 1602 TR New Testaments on her table that Bro. Park brought me.  I can only imagine that it was one of the box full that I gave to Erick Sanchez, who in turn gave some to Marbin.  It's good to know that the truth is going out!

                On returning home, we stopped at Bro. Thomas Sweeney's house and received a rather unfriendly welcome.  He seemed agitated at something and preoccupied. Both Alexis and I felt that he was cold toward us, and that something was wrong.  I don't know if I offended him, and for this reason there is a problem between us, or if he is going through some things.  But lately he has been rather cold toward me, and I don't find the same brotherly love that we once shared.   When we arrived home, Alexis said, "I feel something is wrong there, and that we should pray for him!"  I too felt the same way, so we got down on our knees in the grass and prayed for some time asking God to supply his needs, strengthen him physically and spiritually, and to help him if it be that he is indeed struggling with some problems.

                In the evening, we had services in my garage.  Only children showed up.  But we had a good time.  How much more behaved are these children than the other kids that used to come on Saturdays!  (It really is a blessing to preach to children that will listen!)  I preached on "Anger" and what it brings with it from Genesis chapter four and verses one through sixteen.  Once again the Lord gave me a wonderful homiletical outline in Spanish.  My points were that Anger, if unchecked, will bring:  1.  Maligno (Bad thoughts or actions) from verse five, 2. Miedo (Fear in others) from verse eight, 3. Muerte (Death) from verse eight, 4. Mentiras (Lies) in verse nine, 5.  Una Marca (A Mark) from verse fifteen, and 6. Una Maldición (A Curse) according to verses eleven and twelve.  I felt that such a message was in order as I have seen several of the children overcome with uncontrollable anger on several occasions, and I tried to teach them why they needed not only for society's sake to learn to control it, but for their Christian character as well.

                I also explained that Christ Jesus was angry at sin, (righteous indignation) and this is the right kind of anger, as compared to the wrong kind of anger that Cain had against his brother Abel.  I closed with Romans chapter twelve and verses seventeen and eighteen.

                After services, Alexis and I studied from my notes about the Roman Catholic Church.  We have one a few more lessons to finish, and then I'll have taught him all of my notes in Spanish thus far.

 

January 19th  2004 Monday                               Motorcycle Accident!

 

                This was Alexis' last day with me.  Tomorrow he's off to Guaimaca where he lives to go and see his "novia" (fiancée) of which he is constantly speaking.  Thus, today we thought we'd do something fun.  We drove up the road to the manmade lake which the people here call "La Pozona," and walked around it.  Afterwards we drove up to "El Patarique" and hicked up in the mountains, and over the chalk covered plains.

                Afterwards we drove into town to check our email.  On the way there, a motorcycle turned the corner at full speed and ran broadside into the front of my Suburban.  I hit my brakes as quickly as I could, and thank God little damage was done.  I immediately jumped out of the car, after throwing it into park, to check on the man who ran into me.  He was a little bruised, and banged up, but he said he was okay, and he kept repeating, "It's my fault!  It's my fault!  I was going too fast, and my brakes don't work well.  It's all my fault!"  I said, "It doesn't matter whose fault it was.  What matters is that you are okay!"  He claimed to be fine with just a small pain in his leg and his hand, but said that it was his fault and that he felt really bad about it, as he was going too fast and knew he couldn't stop.  (Later Castillo told me that he'd run into a bus as well some time before).

                We spoke to him about the Lord a little bit as Alexis said, "Maybe God is trying to tell you something and made this happen for a reason!"  We witnessed to him some more and then we parted ways after a word of prayer; he with pains in his hand and leg, and me with a broken front license plate holder and a nice sized dent in my hood.  His name was Norman and he seemed a humble fellow.

                Upon our arrival at home, Alexis and I finished our Bible study about the Roman Catholic Whore, and then he spent some time packing. 

                Hector never showed up, but Castillo's boy, David, came by to fellowship with us.  He is thirteen years old, and is a very nice kid. 

 

January 20th  2004 Tuesday                              Alexis leaves

 

                Early this morning I awoke, showered and dressed.  After breakfast with Alexis, we loaded his luggage into my car and I drove him downtown to the bus station so that he could leave on the seven-thirty bus to Tegucigalpa.  Before leaving we dismissed each other with a hearty, "The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you!"

                The rest of the day I spent studying and resting.  My knee hurts again from all the walking we did yesterday as well as my right ankle.  I started working on several projects, but finally decided to work on a book I've been trying to write for sometime.  It is entitled, "Why I am a Baptist."  Today I finished almost the entire first chapter.

                At five in the afternoon, many children showed up to play soccer.  I joined them at six until six-thirty when they became so ill behaved that I had to rebuke them soundly.  Also, I reminded them that Sunday's and Wednesday's they were welcome, but Tuesday's and Friday's were for those of 12 years of age and older for serious Bible Study.

                After dismissing the small children, I invited the older one inside where we finished studying chapter three of second Thessalonians. 

 

January 21st  2004 Wednesday                        Two Saved!

 

                Erick Sanchez didn't show up for Greek class this morning, but Lindsey, Victor, and Raul did.  I taught them about the Present Active Indicative form of conjugating verbs.  The rest of the day I spent studying, and working on correspondence.

                In the evening, no one showed up for services at five.  I thought for sure that no one would come, but by five-thirty we had a total of seven people.  I preached on "Why Jesus Christ is So Great to Me!"  My points were 1. Because of His Obedience,  2.  Because of His Great Love,  and 3.  Because of His Cleansing Power.

                Before closing, I asked if anyone was unsure that they would go to heaven.  David, Castillo's thirteen-year-old son, and a young lady named Melissa both said they didn't know if they were saved.  I took them through the plan of salvation, and praise be to God, they both trusted the precious Blood of Jesus Christ to save their souls from Hell!

 

January 22nd  2004 Thursday                           Services in Quebrada de Lajas in Adrian's House

 

                How weak and frail is the mortal frame of man!  And more and more I see how vain man is as he thinketh himself to be something he is not.  This morning I awoke with a horrendous nose bleed.  As I rolled out of bed onto the floor to pray, I saw great drops of blood splatter in perfect circles on the tile before me.  Immediately I thought of my Lord in the garden of Gethsemane, and what agony he endured before willingly taking the chastisement of the cross upon him for my despicable peccablility.  As I arose to find a tissue, I praised God for shedding his precious blood for yet even such a one as I, and thanked Him for going, "a little bit further" (Matthew 26:29), and being obedient, "even unto the death of the cross" (Philippians 2:8).

                At two in the afternoon, I took Victor, Raul, Alex, and Lindsey with me to Quebrada de Lajas and we did some visitation.  Jose Martír came along as well, and we visited quite a few people.  Some I witnessed to, and others I didn't.  I'm learning that it's good just to take in interest in the people and show them that you are thinking about them by dropping by to visit with them.  Then little by little, as you gain their trust, you can speak to them more and more about the Bible.

                One young man at the house of the "drunks," named Eusebio, listened as I showed him the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Afterwards I gave him a New Testament and he was thankful for it, and promised to read it.  The rest of the drunks were there as well, and I spoke with them.  I asked them how they were, and they said, "Sober!"  I said, "Why?"  They responded, "Because he have no money to buy 'guarro' (alcohol)."  I quickly retorted, "Praise the Lord!  I'm going to pray that God will keep you broke so that you won't be able to buy any ever!"  They didn't like that too much.

                In the evening, we had a great crowd come for services at Adrian's house.  Victor counted and said there were 26 in total.  I preached on "Three Types of Suffering."  My points were brief in showing them 1. Emotional Suffering (like the death of a loved one), 2. Earthly Suffering (or physical pain that we all endure from time to time), and 3. Eternal Suffering (or suffering the flames of the wrath of almighty God in Hell, for those that aren't saved).  They seemed to listen well to the first two points, but clammed up on me on the last one.  Adrian, who still isn't saved, seemed to lose interest when I preached on Hell.  I'm praying even more that God will convict him and save his soul.

                On the way home, Julio's boys told me that they didn't have anyone to take them to church services on Sunday morning at Bro. Jacobo's church.  They asked me about the possibility of having Sunday morning services at my house.  I told them I'd consider it.  It will be tough to have services Sunday morning as well as twice Sunday night.  But it would be worth it.

 

January 23rd  2004 Friday                 Sick, Study, and Satan Trying to Destroy Things

 

                All day I spent in bed sick as a dog.  Not only did I not have any energy, but my body ached, and I felt as though I might die.  Unfortunately, I remain to face another day in a sin-sick world that knows not God.

                However, its not all bad, as at least God has given me some fruit this week, and yea even this month.  And even though selfishly I desire and long to leave this vail of tears, I do count it a privilege to be able to serve the Lord Jesus Christ and tell others how to get to heaven.

                In the late afternoon, I awoke and studied as much as I could.  Cold chills overwhelmed me, and I tried to forget them.  At five, Carlos came over and we had some fellowship waiting for the rest of the crowd to come at six thirty for our Bi-weekly Bible Study.   Only Lindsey, Hotir, Victor, and Alex came, but we studied Galatians chapter one just the same, and had a wonderful time talking about "The Other Gospel" that people preach.  I also told them about the "Other Jesus," the "Other Spirit," and the "Other Ministers" (of Satan), and the "Other Apostles" from 2 Corinthians chapter eleven, and how Satan's plan is to imitate everything that God does.

                Before going home, Carlos told me that some of the parents of the children that used to come to services are angry because their children are "peleando" (fighting) with other children that come.   I guess I'll have to speak with the parents, and pray that God will resolve this situation.  It seems that Satan always tries to mess things up in some way or another.

 

January 24th  2004 Saturday                            Scuffle with a J.W.

 

                I felt much better this morning, and spent much of my time in study.  In the afternoon, no children came for services.  Thus, I took the time working on a new book I'm writing entitled, "Why I am a Baptist."  I completely finished revising chapter one, and started my outline for chapter two.

                At three, only Alex and Victor came for Visitation.  They said that their brothers were "working" and that they were the only ones given permission to come.  Together we visited house after house in our neighborhood and witnessed to old ladies, young men, children, and adolescents.  At each house we also passed out the tract "¿Cómo Puedo Yo Tener Vida Eterna?" and invited people to services.

                On the way home, Alex said, "Some Jehovah Witness' live there.  You want to speak to them?"  I was feeling a little giddy, so I said, "Come on, I'll show you what spirit they really have!"  We knocked, and a man opened the door not wearing a shirt.  I spoke kindly to him, introduced myself, and asked him if he attended a church of his own.  He quickly responded, "We are Jehovah Witnesses!"  I replied, "Then I have one question for you.  Where will your soul go when you die?"  He replied, "Let me get my Bible!"  He afterwards returned with his "New World Translation," and began trying to start a debate with me.  I quickly cut him short as I saw where he was going by telling him I was in a hurry and that I'd like him to answer one question for me.  I said, "Dear sir, are you a virgin?"  He looked at me funny and said, "What?"  I replied, "I know all about your religion, and according to what you teach only the 144,000 are going to be saved.  Thus, I demand you tell me if you are a virgin or not!"  He seemed perturbed, so I told him to read the first five verses of Revelation chapter 14.   This he did, and I asked him if he was a virgin once more.  He responded, "No, I am defiled as it says there, because I'm married."  He then went on to state some more of his doctrinal nonsense, and I quickly interrupted him asking him once more, "Where will your soul go when you die?"  He responded, "To the grave."  I then told him that he's full of "guile," as the verse in Revelation 14 says, for Jesus (who cannot lie) said there was a hell, and all who are not born again will burn forever there in hell fire. 

The next fifteen minutes I spoke to him about Jesus Christ and showed him that he was God manifest in the flesh, and that their teaching was not only anti-biblical, but was of the spirit of Antichrist!  And if he didn't come to Jesus Christ and trust him as his Saviour, he would burn forever in a Hell he didn't even believe existed.

                Quickly Jezebel (the man's wife) came manifesting that "other spirit" and began yelling at us to leave, telling us that the Bible wasn't given to "debate" but to teach.  I responded, "That's exactly what I'm trying to do.  Teach you that you're lost and on your way to Hell, and you need the BLOOD of Jesus Christ to save your soul from Hell!"  This didn't go over too well, and she continued yelling and told us to leave.

                As we walked away, the man ran back into his house and then returned shouting, "Wait! wait!  There is more I'd like to show your from our Bible!"  I quickly retorted, "I'm sorry sir, I'm not to keep company with heretics, and the Bible says you must be born again, and if you don't get saved you'll burn in Hell for all eternity!  Thus, I take my leave of you knowing I told you the truth, and I'll see you at the judgment!"

                As we walked home, Alex and Victor keep talking about how the man continually contradicted himself, and when I showed him a verse, he always tried to explain it away "spiritually" or "figuratively."   

                In the evening, some of the kids that used to come to services came by and expressed to me their desire to return.  They said that they were forbidden by their parents to come as some kids were hitting some of the other kids.  They asked me to visit their parents and speak with them, and this I did.  The parents were very nice and even gave me liberty to spank their children if need be to keep them in line.  We shall see if the children will indeed be allowed to return.

 

January 25th  2004  Sunday                              Sunday Service!

 

                Although the sun has been shining the last several days, it is very cold inside this huge, old house.  Each morning I am overwhelmed with cold chills, and must start a fire in the chimney to keep warm.  Would to God that warm weather blessed La Esperanza every day!

                As I laid in bed trying to keep warm, God gave me a message to preach in services today.  It was about "How to please God."  My points were 1. "Fe" (By Faith), 2. "Ofrenda" (An Offering, of more than just money, of one's life, time, and sacrifice), and 3. Fidelidad (Faithfulness).  I preached it at three in the afternoon at Quebrada de Lajas, and again in the five o'clock service at my house. 

                At Quebrada de Lajas, we had only a few show up, but in my house we had a great crowd of about 20 or more.  A lady named "Marleen" came as well, and was very happy with the services, and said, "You have good doctrine!"

                       

January 26th  2004 Monday                               Off To Tegucigalpa

 

                Early this morning I traveled up the mountain to Quebrada de Lajas and picked up José Martír.  Together we journeyed to Tegucigalpa, talking the whole way about the Lord.

                Once we entered the Capitol City, I left him at a Hardware store downtown to buy some things, and I journeyed on to other parts of the city to do my business.  He said he'd catch a bus back home, as I had to spend the night.

                In the evening I stayed at the Cancer Center and watched a little of the CNN (Communist News Network).  I was appalled to find the American Vice President Dick Cheney in Rome at the Vatican, no doubt finagling some "secret agreement" with the Pope.  I also noticed that the "Euro dollar" was higher than that of the American dollar.  To me, it looks like everything is falling right into place for America to plunge into depression, and a United Europe to arise as the Phoenix as the most powerful confederation on the Earth, of which will come to a 10 federated kingdom, and eventually the kingdom of the Anti-Christ as the Bible prophecies.  I can only pray that God will be merciful to my beloved nation of America.

 

January 27th  2004 Tuesday                              Good Bye Money

 

                A few days ago, I received an email from a Christian woman in Benin, Africa that desired to donate a large some of money to my ministry.  She stated that she was dying of Cancer, and wanted to leave the money to someone that would use it for the Lord.  I assured her it would indeed be used for this purpose, and she said she would transfer it to my name through her bank.

                All last night I couldn't sleep thinking and praying about what to do with such a large sum of money.  The old saying is, "With more money comes more responsibility!"  And, this is something I really don't want.  But the more I pondered, prayed, and pined away, the more I thought about where the money could be put to good use for the Lord.  I thought about how I could print Bibles, tracts, Spanish booklets, and more, as well as use the money to help other Missionaries, churches, and Bible distributing organizations.  I could also get the truth out more quickly, as well as via internet, computers, and email deliver the Gospel of Jesus Christ to so many hundreds of thousands of people.

                But today I visited several banks, and showed them the letters I was written, and ask their advice.  They told me that it sounded legitimate, but that there were many "scams" like my case sent via internet, and that I should be careful.  They told me that would not allow me to have money wired to an account with them of that sum, without first having much paperwork from the one giving the donation (for they feared "money laundering").  Thus, they gave me a list of the paperwork they needed, and I corresponded with the woman who desired to donate the money.

                When I went to check my email, I received information from the bank in Benin, giving me a number to call.  When I called them by telephone to speak with them, I received a whole lot of "mumbo jumbo."  The Bank man, a Mr. Edward Amhed, was very rude, and said he wanted my bank account number so that he could wire me the money.  I told him what I had learned from the bank, and that I found there are many Internet scams from Togo, Gahanna, Nigeria, called "419 scams" and that before I would give my bank account number to anyone, I needed to know more information about them, and I needed information from the woman who desired to donate the money. 

                He replied, "We don't do things that way!"  He then said that I would need to open an account with his bank in the sum of 2000 to 5000 dollars before he would indeed wire me the money.  I said, "I see.  "Thank you sir," and then I hung up and went on my way, walking away from the sum of 1.5 million dollars discerning that it most certainly was a scam.  For not only am I not going to disclose my personal banking information to anyone for any reason, but I'm not about to open an account in a foreign country with God's money, for I know most certainly I would not see it again. 

                As I drove home to La Esperanza, I thought about the old phrase, "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is."  And the Bible verse that speaks of "uncertain riches" (1 Tim. 6:17), came to mind, as well of that Proverbs 23:5 which says, "Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not? For riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven."  It might have been genuine, or it might not have, but I desire not the hassle, nor the responsibility.  Nor do I have that kind of money to open an account in a foreign bank.   And I thought to myself, "how many people in this world have walked away from that great of a sum of money before?"  Very few indeed.  But the love of money is the root of all evil!

                I'm reading now a wonderful book entitled, "A Short History of England," by Edward P. Cheyney.  The history if England is a bloody one, and I'm discerning that as it was in Feudal Times, so is it today.  Only the names have changed.  The Dukes, Counts, Duchesses, and other nobility were direct descendents of the "Warriors" who ransacked, and pillaged England from the Netherlands, Sweden, Norway, and other surrounding countries.   They eventually subdued the people, and settled in England as nobility, where they became filthy rich. 

                This eventually through the centuries turned into a three-fold class system of 1. "the nobility" (the rich, but wicked), 2.  "the clergy" (who were given donations by the nobility and the poor), and 3. "the poor" (who had to work for a living, and never got ahead).

                The more I study, the more I see that for one to have money, he must do something wrong to get it and keep it.  And today it seems the "nobility" are businessmen or the "bankers" who are constantly "scheming" on how to make and keep more money.  While the poor are those who are working just trying to keep their heads above water, but never fully gaining enough to get out of the "the system."

                Then there is the "clergy," who as the book says, "Were secluded, and on the outside."  They weren't with the working people, and only interacted with them when it came to religious duties, and with the nobility, they tried to separate themselves (until, of course, the militant Jesuits came along and tried to mix religion with politics), to search for spirituality.

                This "donation" that never took place did a lot to help me see that I'm on the "outside" and, like that of the old clergy, money doesn't mean much to me.  What I desire are those riches above in which, "neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal." 

                Thus, I thank God for putting me through this trial, as it helped me to see that I'm trusting in Jesus, and not in riches, and that I love God more than money!  As I know he shall supply all my need according to "His Riches" in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19).

                In the evening, I had Bible Study, and was pleasantly surprised to see several ladies show up with their children.  I taught on Galatians chapter one and two.  One of the ladies was Catholic, and opened her eyes very largely when I showed from the Bible that Mary was not a "virgin" after having Jesus, for she had at the least six other children! (Matthew 13:55-57).

 

January 28th  2004 Wednesday                        Sickness, Services, and Showing God's Love

 

                I awoke this morning by the incessant barking of Rambo.  It turned out it was only Julio's kids coming for our Greek class, of which I completely had forgotten.  I quickly dressed, and let them in.  We studied about the declension of Greek nouns, specifically masculine ones.

                After they left, I went immediately back to bed with cold chills, stomach pains, and more.  I slept most of the day and awoke many times to find myself in a pool of sweat.  Whatever my illness might be, it left me weak, cold, and unable to perform my daily duties.

                In the afternoon, I awoke and began studying, and preparing for our Wednesday night service.  At four, Carlos came and helped me set up the chairs and the pulpit.  Afterwards, Julio's kids came and then all the others, including David.  We had a large crowd, but it was only children. 

                I taught on "What the Bible Says About Love."  I showed them how true love is "giving" (John 3:16), and God gave his son, who in turn showed the greatest love by giving his life (John 15:13) on Calvary, and there is where one can find the love of God.

                After services, I took the children home in my vehicle, and then returned to teach the declension of "Neuter Nouns" to the Cordoba boys (Julio's sons), of which I unfortunately forgot to present to them in the morning.

 

January 29th  2004 Thursday                           Blanca Finally Gets Saved!!!

 

                I studied this morning amidst stomach pains, and a headache.  At eleven thirty, Carlos came by with his Bible.  He's really coming along, and it's a blessing to see.  (The other day when I came home, I found him on my front step reading his Bible!)  Together we loaded the truck and drove up the road to pick up the "Cordoba Clan," as I've dubbed them.  Five of them came (Alex, Lindsey, Hotir, Victor, and Raul), so the seven of us drove into town to speak with the lady who was the owner of the house in Quebrada de Lajas that we were want to use for services.  She offered to rent the place to us for 200 lempiras a month, or slightly under ten American dollars.   We agreed, and I was given the key.

                Immediately we journeyed out to the house and began working on cleaning the place up.  It's not the best house in the world, and it does need a lot of work, but it is in a good place, so we were happy to obtain it.  I left the boys to work, while I drove back into town to check my email, make a copy of the key, and drive to the bank to get some money to pay for the rent, which I did before driving back to Quebrada de Lajas.

                When I returned, I found the boys did a wonderful job of "clean-up" and they were bragging about how they had killed three mice which they had caught scurrying around.

                By that time, my sickness had caught up with me, and I sent the boys off to do visitation while I slept in the car trying to get better.  They returned and said they visited everyone, and many said they'd come for services. 

                In the evening, we only had about 15-20 children (which were surprisingly very well behaved).  We sang many hymns, and in the adobe-walled rooms with tile floors, our voices echoed like an angelical choir.  I couldn't help but shout "Amen!" on several occasions. 

                I preached on "The Blood of Jesus Christ."  I showed how the life of the flesh is in the blood (Levi. 17:11), but that it was only temporal life, as man's blood is tainted with sin.  I then differentiated it with the precious blood of God, without sin, and showed how his sinless blood gives life eternal.

                After having preached only a few minutes, Blanca came with her child Dilsia, and her three sister-in-law's children.  She said that Jose hadn't made it home yet, but that she wanted to come and hear.  This she did, and after I finished the message, she finally accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as her personal Saviour through faith in the Blood of Jesus Christ!!!

                Thus, it was a prosperous day, and even though I was sick, God's strength was made strong in my weakness, as we saw one saved, and we were able to secure a new meeting place.          

 

January 30th  2004 Friday                 Catalino

 

                When I returned home last night I went straight to bed.  I felt awful physically with trouble breathing, stomach pains, and cold chills, but had the joy of the Lord in my heart knowing that someone trusted Christ Jesus as their Saviour.

                This morning I tried to sleep in, however, I could not do so, as I was constantly tossing and turning, pondering upon things that don't matter in a half-dazed dream state, and trying to stay warm. 

At ten o'clock, I heard Rambo barking uncontrollably, so I arose to see who it was that came "disturb" me.  To my surprise, it was Catalino from Quebrada de Lajas.  He was in the area and saw my car, and came to visit.

                He had not eaten breakfast, so together we ate a bowl of cornflakes, and conversed about many things.  Afterwards I showed him the vegetables I had planted, and then took him on a tour of the property and the house.

I witnessed to him as well. He said, "Well, I'm 'preparing' to get saved.  I just have to stop sinning first, and then I'll trust Jesus Christ as my Saviour."  I tried to explain to him that he is a sinner, and that he can never stop sinning.  Only Christ Jesus can help him live a holy life and that he needed to trust the Blood of Jesus Christ to be saved, and then the Holy Spirit would help him to live for God.  He did not seem to understand.   I further explained that salvation is not of works, but of God's grace and our faith.  And that "Repentance" is feeling sorry for your sin, to such a degree that you want Jesus Christ and salvation more than you want your sins.  It is not "quit sinning" and then get saved, for no one can quit sinning in the flesh.  They need Christ Jesus in them to help them overcome sin.

He listened, but I quickly learned he was of a different mindset.  I figure it's the years of Catholicism, as he was thinking that one must quit sinning completely before God can accept them, and they can accept God.  I preached to him the importance of trusting the blood of Jesus Christ and asked him to think more about it.

I sure care about this young man, and hate to see him drunk (as he was last night in service), and am praying that God will save his soul.  But all I can do is witness to him, be his friend, and show him that I care.  Before he left, I gave him some seeds to plant in his garden, as well as several pounds of beans from mine for him to eat.

In the evening, I had over fifteen people show up for Bible Study.  I taught them from Galatians chapter two.  They listened well.  I also showed them how Peter makes a horrible "Pope," as the Catholic church tries to make him, for Paul rebuked him (vs 10), and then said he did not walk "according to the truth of the gospel" (vs 14).

 

January 31st  2004 Saturday                             Bible Institute Class Starts Again

 

                I awoke still sick, tired, and weak.  Yet, "duty is never conflict," as they say, and I shaved, showered, and drove up the road to "El Way" to teach my first day of Bible Institute Class this year.  Erick Sanchez asked me to teach for thirteen weeks on "1st and 2nd Thessalonians.  This morning we made it through chapter one.

                After class, I went to the Gas station to buy some kerosene (to light the firewood in my chimney), and then drove home to rest.  A few hours later, the children came for services, and I taught them about "The word of God."

                Afterwards, Alex, Lindsey and Victor came for visitation, but I felt so terrible, I had to cancel.  I told them, "But you can go if you like, and invite people to services."  The replied, "What?  The Catholics would kill us!"  Slowly I'm trying to get them to where they can visit themselves, but they still seem timid, and need to visit some more with me first.

                The rest of the day and evening I spent resting.  Sometimes sleeping, sometimes reading, in an effort to bring myself back to good health.

 

February 1st 2004 Sunday                 Services

 

                No one came for services today at Quebrada de Lajas.  This was rather discouraging.  But no one failed to walk to the soccer field to watch the soccer game.  Thus, I drove up the road and watched them play.

                In the evening, we had a good crowd for services at my house.  However, David played a "vanishing act."  He left before services began, and no one knew why.  Always something seems to happen in the ministry to keep me guessing.  I can not imagine why he would not want to stay for services.  

 

February 2nd  2004 Monday                               Pondering

 

                How quickly January swept past!  Time just continues to fly by so rapidly here in Honduras, that it's unreal!  What must I do to make things slow down?  I feel as though I'm on a roller coaster ride to heaven, and someone has the handle stuck on "Full Speed."  But I am enjoying the ride, and am thankful I know where I shall arrive when the ride is over.

                As I rested yet again today, I pondered upon what the world's three main goals are.  I believe they desire, "Fame," "Fortune," and "Fornication."  Yet as a Christian, those don't appeal to me.  What I desire are another set of "Three F's."  These would be, 1. Fellowship (with my Saviour), 2.  Faithfulness (to my Saviour), and  3. the Fanfare (of my Saviour, when he returns).   Even so come Lord Jesus!

 

February 3rd  2004 Tuesday                              A Visit From Priday

                       

                Early this morning Missionary Harold Priday came by to visit.  He had come to town to speak with his lawyer and to take care of some legal problems he was having.   I invited him in and we talked for a while.  I told him of the blessings that the Lord had poured out in January in seeing five people saved, and he rejoiced with me.  The rest of the day I spent resting, trying to finally get over my sickness.  I also spent some time in study and prayer.

                In the evening, some people came for Bible Study (mostly young people), and I taught them from the last few verses in Galatians chapter two and the first few verses of chapter three.  I showed them the "Three Lives" in verse 20, and then showed them how Paul was guilty of "name-calling" in chapter three, when he called the Galatians "foolish."  I then took them to Matthew chapter 23 and showed them how Jesus too called names such as, "hypocrites," "generation of vipers," "blind guides," etc. And taught them that both Jesus and Paul were speaking to the lost religious crowd who used religion to gain money and power, and didn't care about "righteousness," "holiness," and "truth."  "These," I told them, "are those to whom God has no respect, for they are using God's name to secure riches, recognition, and reprisal, while damning souls to Hell!"

                                       

February 4th  2004 Wednesday                         Services

 

                The "Cordoba Clan" came early this morning with the exception of Bani (who has been having terrible tooth aches lately) and Hotir (who had to do some painting for his parents) for Greek classes.  I taught them about "Feminine Nouns" and we practiced translating sentences from Greek to Spanish.

                Afterwards we went outside and checked on my hen.  She has been sitting for 21 days upon four eggs, and here they tell me that at 22 days, the eggs will hatch.  We carefully removed the hen, and were surprised to find that one of the eggs was already partly opened as one of the chicks was trying to get out.  What a thrill it is to see God's creatures reproduce after their own kind! 

                The rest of the day I spent studying and trying to yet again recuperate from my most horrid illness.  In the evening, I preached on "Why the Father Forsook the Son," to a small crowd of mostly children.  I'm learning that people here in my neighborhood are either: clannish, standoffish, or lazy.  Some that came to services before don't come anymore because there are people they don't like that are attending.  Others that used to visit, decided they didn't like the fact that we are meeting in a garage.  I call these people "building minded," as they desire to come only if there is a nice building to meet in.  And still others have quit coming strictly because they are just plum lazy, and don't want to leave their house.

                The longer I am a Missionary, the more frustrated I become with people.  My carnal mind thinketh on this wise: "Don't they know that God has given me the truth, and they need it?  Why then, don't they come to hear it?"

                I thought about Second Thessalonians chapter two and verse ten, and how it says that those to which it refers had "not a love of the truth," and for this reason, God sent them a "strong delusion" (vs 11), and they were all damned (vs 12).  But my questions is still, "How do you get someone to love the truth?"  I guess it's just something they have to do of their own accord.  Yet how frustrating it is to see so many nowadays don't love the truth, nor are they hungry for it.

                As I pondered upon this, God brought back to mind the verse in Matthew 24:12, which states, "And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold."  The best that I can figure is that the world is so wicked nowadays, that men love their sin more than the truth, and for this reason, they do not desire, nor hunger after it.  I can only imagine that things will get worse the more sinful the world becomes, and more and more multitudes will be deceived, believing a lie rather than the truth.

 

February 5th  2004 Thursday                            Quebrada de What?

 

                I arose this morning yet again sick.  I stayed in bed as long as I could, praying and trying to stay under the nice warm covers, before I finally, and begrudgingly, went to take a warm shower.  After which I went to check on my new "pollito" (baby chick).  How sad I was to find it dead.  It was a cute, fuzzy, lifeless, black mass that had died probably last night or early this morning smothered to death under the weight of its mother.  I remember thinking, "If you can't trust your own mother, who can you trust?"  The other eggs have yet to hatch.

                Most of the morning I spent studying, and then I was off to Quebrada de Lajas with the "Cordoba Clan."  Blanca and Jose invited me for lunch at eleven, and when I showed up, they weren't home.  Thus I went to work with the Cordoba's cleaning the yard in front and behind our little church building for several hours.  We raked leaves, cut grass, sawed tree limbs, pulled rocks, and more.  Afterwards we made a burn pile and disposed of all the rubbish.  As we sat and watched the leaves, sticks, garbage, and grass burn, while giant white billows of smoke rose into the sky, I remarked, "I guess we'll have to change the name of this place from "Quebrada de Lajas" (Broken Rocks), to "Quemada de Lajas" (Burnt Rocks)!"  They laughed and laughed.

                Afterwards, I left them to watch the fire and I walked up the mountain to talk with Blanca, who had recently returned home.  She cooked me a wonderful lunch of beans, rice, and tortillas.  As I ate, she told me that she tried to matriculate Francisca in the school up the road for this year.  But they were rejected, as they didn't have Francisca's Birth Certificate.  Blanca also has yet to get hers so that she can marry José Martír.  Thus, the gentleman that I am, I volunteered tomorrow to drive them to Los Dolores where we can get both of the needed papers at the same time.

                After lunch, I took the Cordoba boys, and we did some visitation.  Most people know me now in Quebrada de Lajas, and they all wave when I drive by.  And it's always a blessing to see their big Indian smiles when I jump out of the car and walk up to their house to chat with them.  We also gave away four Bibles today.

                For evening service, we had an old woman named Susanna visit, who said she'd been saved for many a year, and used to go to Marbin's church when he had services here.  I invited her in for services, and made her feel welcome.

                After singing six or seven hymns, I preached on "How to learn the Bible."  I showed them that first they must "Saber" (Know) that it is God's book and His words, and not man's.  Next I showed them that to learn and understand the Bible, one must be "Salvo" (Saved), for it is the Holy Spirit that teaches (John 16:13; 1 Cor. 2:13,14).  Afterwards, I went on by showing that to learn the Bible, one must be "Estudioso" (Studious, or given to much study).  And I continued by showing them that one must be "Santo" (Holy), and be a doer of the word, and not a hearer only.  I used the verse in 2 Thess. 2:10, as it was on my heart, and stressed to them their need to love the word of God, and how the more sin one has in their life, the less love they'll have for God's words.

                Catalino was in services, and listened half-heartedly.  The more I preached about loving sin, and for this reason not having a love of the truth, the more he drifted away and began staring at the ceiling and finding ways to distract himself.  I do pray for him so, and desire that he comes to the saving knowledge of the truth.  However, before leaving, he told me, "I can't come on Sunday's as I have a prior engagement."  He wouldn't tell me what it was as first, but after I constrained him, he looked at the floor and said, "I'm going to partake of my "vicio" (vice) of drinking."  I told him I was sorry to hear that, but that I would look forward to seeing him next Thursday night.

 

February 6th  2004 Friday                  Los Dolores

  

                First thing this morning, after my shower, I went out to the chicken coop to check on the hen and chick.  Another young chick hatched during the evening hours yesterday, and was lying in the nest this morning still wet.  So now I have two chicks.  There is one egg left, and I can only hope that it too will soon hatch.

                Arriving at Quebrada de Lajas early this morning, I found neither Blanca nor Jose ready to go.  Thus I sat and waited (a common occurrence in Honduras).  Blanca was nice enough to cook me breakfast, and I enjoyed cheese, beans and rice.

                When they finally were ready, we were off to Los Dolores with Jose's young nephew named Robert.  On the way we were quiet and I had to fight sleepiness the whole way.

                When we arrived in San Miguelito an hour or more later, I dropped José Martír off to take a bus to San Juan, and then pressed on the ten kilometers to "Los Dolores" to obtain Blanca's birth certificate, so that she can get married, as well as Francisca's so that she can start school next week.  Our task was successful, and we received the papers we solicited without aporime.

                As we waited for the clerk to type the paperwork, I walked around the town, passed out some tracts and took pictures.  Afterwards, I waited in the office with Blanca, Francisca, and Roberto.  Blanca had to pay seven lempiras for the documents, and as we were in the treasury's office, I met the "alcalde" or "Mayor" of "Los Dolores.  It was a woman named "Maria," and I chatted with her for a while.  She told me that the name "Los Dolores" came from a statue of "The Virgin" which many years ago was found in a town not far from there.  The Catholic people became attached to it, and called it "Nuestro Dama de Dolores" (translated: "Our Lady of Pains").  The Catholics, trying to get a church started in the then small "aldea" (hamlet) decided they would use the statute for their profit.  They then moved it to what was soon to become "Los Dolores" with the story, "This virgin has pains, because she wants to see a church built in this town!"  This was enough to move the gullible, religious masses, and they quickly built a chapel.  Soon afterwards, the virgin was moved to another town with the same story, but the name "Los Dolores" was left behind.

                Before leaving, I gave tracts to all the government officials, and then we were on our way back to "La Esperanza."  On the way I heard a terrible noise from the back right tire, of which I've heard so many times before.  The brake broke again, and the pieces could clearly be heard bouncing around inside.   I guess I'm just a Brake Breaker, but "Give me a break!"  Why don't my brakes last in this country?  At any rate, I guess God is showing me I need to take a "break" and rest a bit, and to take it easy in my traveling.  But at least we had a good time, obtained the papers we sought, and I had the chance to give away some tracts as well as three Bibles.

                Upon my arrival home, I took the tire off and removed all the loose pieces.  Many of the pieces had broken in half, so I put them in a box to take with me to Tegucigalpa on Monday.  Then, I put a screw in the brake line, and tightened it back up to keep it from leaking (as Homero Romero taught me), replaced the tire, and left the job of fixing it for another day.  I'll have to use the truck tomorrow and Sunday, and then Monday I plan on taking it to Tegucigalpa (carefully!) so that Otto Martinez can fix it.

                In the evening, we had a great crowd for Bible Study.  I taught from chapter three of Galatians, and we made it through a few verses.  I showed them about the "apostolic signs" and how they have ceased, as well as how the law cannot save, and those that are under the law, are under a "maldición" (a curse), and those that are saved, have a "bendición" (blessing).

 

February 7th  2004 Saturday                             Free Rides!

 

                When I tried to leave this morning in the truck for Bible Institute, I heard the other back brake making a loud, grinding noise.  Thus, I parked the car in the garage, and walked up the road to the Cordoba's.  I told Julio of my mishap, and he offered to drive me to where we have classes.  I accepted readily, and together we were on our way.

                Upon my arrival, I thanked Julio, and went inside to find I had three new students as well as all the old ones.  I also found that Juan Gomez and his newly wedded wife Leila Rios had brought me a hen, for the which I was very thankful.

                After services, I walked up the dirt road to the main highway to find and take a taxi into town, when Missionary Marbin Rodriguez pulled up behind me and offered me a ride, of which I kindly accepted.   He dropped me off at the bank and I went in to pay my water bill.  There I was standing in line with my Bible in one hand and a hen in a bag in the other.  I must have looked quite silly.  Many asked me, "What are you doing with the chicken?"  I sarcastically responded, "I'm going to deposit all the golden eggs that it's laying!"  They laughed and laughed.

                I also went to the Internet café before going home, and checked my email.  Unfortunately, the chicken made a "surprise" in its bag, which left a rather unpleasant odor in the air.  But, since most people here in Honduras have chickens, the smell went unnoticed, and unheeded (except by me).

                Upon my arrival home, I let the hen go, and found that my rooster was quite unfriendly to her.  Nor did the other hen take to her at first.  But after a short time, they all seemed to get along.  Thus, now I have three hens, one rooster, and two chicks (the other egg never produced).  And, I am looking forward to watching the small ones grow.

                After a shower, I went to bed feeling sick again.  No children came for services, and this allowed me some needed rest.  David came over in the afternoon, while I was trying to take a nap.  We played several games of chess, and afterwards went on visitation with the "Cordoba Clan."   (I felt so bad I wanted not to go, but I felt I must, as I had a good group ready and willing).  We stopped at many houses, and put tracts in each one.  Many people said they would come to services, but I'm learning to be skeptical, for I've heard so many say that, but then never do show up.  It's almost a miracle in itself to me when a visitor comes to services.  How I wish more would come.  But I'm learning that as with chickens, one must be patient in the ministry.

                At one of the houses we visited, there was a very cute two-year-old girl with blonde hair and crystal blue eyes.  I am no racist, but it does affect me so to see a child with the characteristics of my race.  And it makes me not only miss home, my people, and my land, but makes me wish I too had children of my own.  Sometimes it makes me grim and dismal thinking upon these things.  I feel at times that I've been robbed of having the privilege of having a family of my own, of which this old fleshly, mortal coil so desperately desires.  Each man, I believe, has a desire within him to see that he has descendants.  And I find this want in myself as well.  But all I can say is, "I'm not my own.  I'm bought with a price.  Thus, I must glorify God in my spirit and body which are his, and be thankful for the lot he's laid upon me.  And rest content that I am making 'spiritual descendents' in the Lord."

 

February 8th  2004 Sunday                                Services

 

                First thing this morning, after Bible reading, I put on my work clothes and took both back tires off the car and tried to find out where the "grinding noise" was coming from.  It seemed the back brake on the left was too tight, and was locking up.  After loosing it, I put the tires back on and tried it out.  Praise the Lord, I found that I could still drive and even stop with the two front brakes and the one good back brake.

                At two o'clock, I left for Quebrada de Lajas with David and another young man that comes to services named Alex.  We had a small crowd attend, which was only children.  I preached on "Heaven" from Revelation chapter twenty-one and twenty-two.

                In the evening service at my house, I preached on "Why do you come to Church?"  I started by showing them that some people come to church because they are 1. "Acostumbrados" (Accustomed to coming), 2. "Animados" (Excited about coming), and 3. "Apretados" (Obligated to come).   Afterwards, I showed why others don't come to services.  My points were because they were: 1. "Asustados" (Scared), 2. "Agravados" (Aggravated), 3. "Apartados" (On the Outside), or 4. "Araganes" (Lazy!).  Then I moved on to my main topic of "Why we should come to services," which were 1. Adorar (To Worship), 2. Alabar (Praise), 3. Asistir (Asist), and finally "Aceptar," (Accept) of which I had two points, A. accept the truth of God's word, and B. if lost, accept the Lord!

                The rest of the evening, I spent trying to get everything together for my trip to Tegucigalpa tomorrow.  I pray that I'll make it without any problems, as I've got to drive slowly with three brakes.

 

 

February 9th  2004 Monday                               Off To Tegus!

 

                I awoke at four this morning, begrudgingly, and by five I was on my way to Tegucigalpa.  There was a heavy fog on the way, and could barely see.  Eventually, it lifted and I drove to Tegucigalpa in awe of the beautiful colors of the early morning dawn in the clouds over the valley of Jesus de Otoro.

                Upon my arrival in Tegus, I went immediately to Nutek Systems, my mechanic's shop, and left my vehicle in their care.  Otto volunteered to take me to the cancer center in his Chevrolet Tahoe, and I readily accepted.  After securing a room, I walked up to the Internet shop and checked my email.  I also took a taxi to Aerocasillas to see if I had received any mail.  Afterwards, I journeyed back to the Cancer Center (witnessing to the Taxi Driver the whole way) to relax.

                In the evening, I had dinner at Ruby Tuesday's with Mrs. Anita Hurst, the sixty-something year old lady who is director of the Cancer Center, and also a nurse.  We talked about many different things, and it was good to speak English again and fellowship with another American.

 

February 10th  2004 Tuesday                            Meeting Missionaries and Surgery

 

                This morning I ran a few errands on foot, and then went to the mall to check my email, and buy a few toiletries.  As I was leaving, I ran into Missionary Arvil Smith who lives, and is working, in the town of Comayagua.  We talked for over an hour.  His wife had recently died and he remarried a Honduran woman.  When he told me the story of how his wife died in bed with a smile on her face looking up towards heaven, it gave me cold chills.  She died of Cancer, and was ready to go.  How I do hope I can face death in the same manner!

                Before heading back to the Cancer Center, I stopped at Subway to buy a sandwich.  While in line, I met a man named Ernie Langendoen, a "Dutch Reformed Church" Missionary.  He invited me to eat with him, and I agreed to do so.  As we ate, we spoke about "doctrine."  I asked him, "What does the Reformed Church Believe?"  He told me they were mostly Calvinistic, but they did believe in Mission Work (a contradiction in terms to me).  I taught him where "The Gospel" is in the Bible (1 Cor. 15:1-4), and he was thankful, for he didn't know.  It's amazing to me how many people claim to be Missionaries, yet when you ask them, they can't even tell you in what chapter and verse the Gospel is found!

                In the evening, I spoke with Anita Hurst, and we decided we would operate on my ingrown toenail, as it has once again become painful.  She had all the tools, so we operated on it in the break room at the cancer center.  She is very good at injecting Lidocaine, and praise be to God, I didn't feel a thing as we cut the flesh quite deep, and pulled the stubborn, old nail out! 

                       

February 11th  2004 Wednesday                      Going Home

 

                The truck wasn't finished today, so we decided I should return next Monday to retrieve it.  Thus, I took the 11:20 bus home to La Esperanza.  On the way, I read my Bible and thought about many things.  I also rested for an hour or so, and tried to keep my throbbing toe up to keep the pain from augmenting.

                When I arrived in La Esperanza, I took a taxi home, and then prepared for services in the evening.  Many children arrived, and it was a blessing to see them well behaved for once.  I preached on "What Hinders the Gospel" from 1 Corinthians 9:12.  My points were 1. "Riquezas" (Riches), 2. "Reprobados" (Reprobates) and 3. "Rebelión" (Rebellion).

                       

February 12th  2004 Thursday                          Quebrada de Lajas

 

                I awoke sick, yet again, this morning.  All of the traveling, studying, preaching, teaching, and more that I do, doesn't leave me much time to rest.  So I spent this morning sleeping and trying to catch up on some much needed repose.

                In the afternoon, I asked Mr. Rich Fischer if he could take me to Quebrada de Lajas for services in the evening.  He quickly replied, "No!  But I'll let you borrow the truck!"  Thus, I drove there with Alex, Raul, Hotir, David and the other Alex in his '85 Toyota pickup.  Jose Martir wasn't home, so I talked to Blanca and rested on the front porch with Hotir and Alex while she made us a cup of coffee.  As I sat and watched the chickens, ducks, and turkeys, I thought to myself, "Why is it in Spanish all of those start with a "P."  There is "Pollo" (Chicken), "Pavo" (Turkey), and "Pato" (Duck).  Then I remembered that Bird (Pajaro) and Dove (Paloma) also started with "P" as well.  How interesting is the Spanish Language.  I guess it's because they all have "Plumas" (feathers).

                We had a great crowd for services in the evening, albeit they were mostly kids.  I preached again the message "Why we Should Come to Church!"

 

February 13th 2004 Friday                                Bible Study

                       

                This morning I took Mr. Fischer's truck to him.  When I opened the gate to the Baptist Camp, Luis came riding up on his bicycle.  He too was there to visit Rich.  After chatting for a while with them both, I walked home through the field behind the camp. 

                In the evening, I finished teaching from Galatians chapter three in our Bible Study.  Zarahi came and asked to speak with me before services.  She said, "The Santidad church said they'd help me with my studies if I'd attend services with them.  What do you think?"  I told her, "They have false doctrine, and it appears to me that they just want you to come to their services.  I think you'd do better to stay away from them as they play "Rock 'n Roll" at their services, and teach young people how to live very worldly."  She replied, "Okay.  I think you're right!  My Dad doesn't like them either."

               

February 14th 2004 Saturday                            Bible Institute

 

                Early this morning, I walked the field behind my house to the Baptist Camp and then asked Mr. Fischer if I could use his truck.  He agreed, and I was then off to my Bible Institute class.  A lot of the students were absent today, and several came in late, but this didn't keep me from teaching them all I could.  We almost finished chapter three of the first epistle, and had a wonderful time studying about "Persecution," "How Other Christians Can Help You Have More Joy," and much more.

                Afterwards, I went to speak with Marbin Rodriguez, because Erick Sanchez said he wished to see me.  His wife invited me in and led me into the living room where I waited for him.  When he entered the room, we greeted each other, and then sat down.  He proceeded to give me his reason for calling me there.  He decided that there is no reason for us to have two different Baptist works in Quebrada de Lajas, and since he was only there every fifteen days, that he thought it would be better if he just turned his people over to me, and then I would continue the work in Quebrada de Lajas.  This I considered to be a most excellent idea, and we agreed Thursday next to meet at his house at one-thirty in the afternoon, and from there make our passage to Quebrada de Lajas, where he would introduce me to the people that were coming to his services.

                No children came for services today, for the which I was glad, and I spent some time resting.  That is of course until Alex and David came by to visit.  Also Zarahi and her little brother Brandon came as well.

                In the afternoon, we all went on visitation.  We visited quite a few homes and passed out many tracts.  One man in particular, named Bartalome, was quit interesting to talk to.  He claimed no religion, but said he believed in God.  I witnessed to him, and he kept changing the subject.  I realized he would not listen, so I decided to be his friend and just "chat" with him.  Our conversation turned towards, "The good old days in La Esperanza," and I enjoyed listening to him tell stories of what things were like when he was a child here in our neighborhood (over thirty years ago).

                The Cordoba's have started school again, so we decided to change our Greek class to Saturday night.  Raul is doing very well, but the other ones are lacking, so we spent most of our time translating simple sentences into Spanish.

                In the evening, I went to bed early, exhausted, and dreading having to preach twice tomorrow, as well as having to ride the bus into Tegus on Monday early in the morning.

                       

February 15th 2004 Sunday                               Services

 

                I only had six children for services in Quebrada de Lajas.  I taught them about the subject of "Lions in the Bible."  Afterwards I took them home and then drove back home in Mr. Fisher's truck.  For service in the evening, I had "the core," or those who are truly faithful (about six in all).  I taught on the subject of "Baptism."  My points were:  1. It's a "Mandamiento" (commandment) from Matthew 28:19,20, 2.  It is a "Muestra" (show) of our faith in Christ according to 1 Peter 3:21, 3. The "Manera" (way of doing it) is by immersion by reading Acts 8:39, and 4. One ought to be baptized before they can be a "Miembro" (member) of the local church.  We planned a baptismal service on the 29th.  I do hope people can come.

                After services Zarahi told me that she was supposed to start school Tuesday, and that the reason the "Santidad" wanted to help her was to buy her a uniform, notebooks, and a backpack.  I felt sorry for her, and I gave her 100 lempiras to help her buy material for a uniform.  I also gave her some pencils and pens.

 

February 16th 2004 Monday                              Leaving Early for Tegus

                       

                Rich drove me up to the bus station at four this morning.  And thirty minutes later I was on my way to Tegucigalpa.  I tried to sleep most of the way, but was constantly wakened by people standing in the aisles bumping into me, someone throwing up out the window two rows back to my left, and the constant hairpin turns over the long, winding roads.

                Upon my arrival in Tegus, I went straight to Otto's and found that my truck was still not ready.  He apologized, and then drove me to the Cancer Center, where I obtained a room, and spent some time relaxing.  After telling me that it would be yet another few hours before they could finish working on my vehicle, I decided I'd just walk up the road to the Barber Shop and get a haircut.  As I sat in the waiting room, I listened to two Marines talking to each other about the places they'd been while in the service.  They also spoke about how they swam in the Dead Sea, saw the Jordan river, stood upon Mount Sinai, had seen many places the Jesus had been, and more while they were in the Middle East.  This was quite interesting to me. 

                However, their conversation quickly degenerated when they began talking about "women" and bragging about their "sexual escapades."  This became a vexation to my soul, and I prayed and asked God to shut them up.  As the Bible says in Ephesians 5:12, "For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret."  And it was a shame unto me to even hear them speaking of such ungodly things.  Then it dawned on me how they were only a representation or example of "this generation."  How sad it was to think that all men their age without Christ are the same.  They have nothing to live for but another "beer" and another "chick."  How strange and how distant they seemed to me.  As I sat and thought upon this, I pondered upon how their minds and their knowledge were of wickedness and worldliness, and that my thoughts and knowledge were upon righteousness and redemption.  While they left, I found myself feeling sorry for them, and praying God would open their eyes to the truth of the Gospel, and the show them the emptiness of their ungodly lifestyle.

                Upon my return to the Cancer Center, I was told the car would not be ready until tomorrow.   Thus, I spent some time reading, writing, and eating a Pizza I ordered from Pizza Hut.  Missionary Herbert Prince and his wife came in to eat their dinner in the guest dining room/recreation room, and we talked for a while.  Herb had some great stories about his early days in the ministry, and I hung captivated on every word.

 

February 17th 2004 Tuesday                             Finally I Receive My Truck

 

                Unfortunately, the car was not done at eight this morning as I was told it would be.  Neither was it done at nine.  Nor did they have it ready at ten.  It wasn't until eleven o'clock that Otto came to the Cancer Center to pick me up.  When he took me back to his shop, I was surprised to find my bill much larger than I had imagined.  For all the work they did (which was indeed a lot), it ended up costing over $700 to fix my truck.  It hurt to have to fork over the cash, but I did so cheerfully, thanking God that at least the truck was now almost as good as new.

                The rest of the afternoon I spent running errands.  I had to buy groceries, mail some letters, buy Office Supplies, and more.  By the time I finally arrived home in La Esperanza, it was very late, and I found that my students were waiting for me to begin class.  This we did, and I taught them from the first few verses of Galatians chapter four.  We had a wonderful study, and I showed them why God said that woman are to obey their husbands, children are to obey their parents, and servants are to obey their masters.  I also showed them how everyone in the world is a slave to someone or something.  If a man is lost, he is a servant to sin (John 8:34), and ultimately Satan.  And if a man is saved, he is a servant to God (Romans 6:22). 

                Finally, I taught them about how Jesus was born into this world in the "likeness" of man's sinful flesh, yet without sin (Rom. 8:3), and how the blood of Jesus Christ was "God's blood" (Acts 20:28), and sinless, unlike that of man.  I also showed them how that the devil had men that loved him enough to give him blood sacrifices, or cut themselves and offer their blood to him (like Baal's priests that were in the showdown against Elijah).  And I closed with how awesome the true God is who loved us enough they he didn't ask for our blood, but willingly, unselfishly, and lovingly shed his blood for us in our place for our sins! 

 

February 18th 2004 Wednesday                       No Electricity!

 

                This morning the power went out, and thus my alarm did not wake me as usual.  However, Bani awakened me early when he came over to talk with me and ask a few questions.  Afterwards, Zarahi came by and showed me her new uniform, which her mother had made her with the money I gave her.  She also asked me if I could buy her a new "muchilla" (backpack).  I said I would, and together we drove into town and I let her pick one out.  She was very happy.

                The rest of the day I spent at home cooking beans over an open fire.  The power was out all day today, and I was unable to do much of anything.  Alex and David came by in the afternoon, and we sat around and talked.  We also fixed the old Coleman lantern that was leaking.

                In the evening, not very many showed up for service, as it was very cold, and very windy.  I took them through the first couple of pages of the Church Constitution making them turn to the verses with me that were listed therein.  Afterwards, they went home and I went to bed feeling yet again, cold, tired, and in bad health.

 

February 19th 2004 Thursday                           Quebrada De Lajas

 

                At twelve today I went to check my email and pay the light bill.  Unfortunately, the bank had no "sistema" (computer system), and I as unable to pay my debt.  Thus, I journeyed up to Marbin's house to visit with him.  He invited me there last week, and we were to go to Quebrada de Lajas together to do some visitation, and he was to introduce me to others in the area that used to come to his services.  However, he never showed up.  I waited at his home for over an hour and a half.  Finally, I had to leave and prepare for services. 

                In the evening, I preached about "Baptism," and showed Jose and Blanca that they needed to be baptized for their testimony's sake. 

                Afterwards, I drove the people home and then went back to the house to rest.

 

February 20th 2004 Friday                                Bible Study

 

                Most of the day I spent in bed sick, yet again, from all the cold weather, and running that I'm doing.  In the evening, many came for our Bible Study and I taught them from chapter four of Galatians.  As soon as they left, I went straight back to bed feeling nauseated, miserable, and tired.

 

February 21st  2004 Saturday                           Classes!

 

                I awoke early this morning, yet still feeling awful.  However, "Duty is never conflict," as they say, and I quickly washed, and dressed for Bible Institute class.  We had a great time of Bible study, and despite my poor health, we joked with each other frequently.  Afterwards, I took a box of twenty 1909 Spanish Bibles to Erick Sanchez which lives nearby.  He was thankful and said he'd get them out to the people in the mountains that have none.

                Erick also asked me about Revelation chapter one and verse eight.  We looked it up in the Textus Receptus Greek Text that I had given him, as well as in the corrupt Westcott and Hort\Nestle-Aland Greek text, and found that the word "God" was added by the Critical Texts.   His question was, "Why do they add 'God,' doesn't that help the Jehovah Witness' teaching?"  He was right, it did.  When I went home, I looked up all the texts I could get my hands on, and found no evidence whatsoever in why the "Critical Texts" would add the word "God."  All the Catholic Bibles in Spanish, as well as the corrupt Latin Vulgate have the added word as well in their translations.  And the Nestle-Aland Critical Apparatus utterly failed to give any information whatsoever."  Thus, we have another example of why "scholarship" is for the birds!

                In the afternoon, I had no children come for services, thus I rested.  That is until some children showed up to play.  I played with them, and then sent them home.  A short while later, Alex, Lindsey, and Victor came for Visitation, and we visited many different houses, inviting people to services, and passing out tracts. 

                Upon finishing Visitation, we had our Greek class.  I taught them about "Definite articles" and "Adjectives."

 

February 22nd  2004 Sunday                             Preaching!

 

                I slept in this morning trying to get well.  When I looked at my clock, it said, "7:13."  As I rolled over to go back to sleep, I thought immediately of my birthday, July 13th, 1974.  I then remembered that this is 2004, and that in just a few short months, I'd be thirty years old.  How strange this was to me.  It seemed like only yesterday I was graduating from High School, and now my life is almost half over.  How quickly time flies – too quickly!

                At two this afternoon I journeyed out to Quebrada de Lajas and spent some time in prayer before services.  At three only seven children showed up.  I taught them from Acts chapter five about Ananias and Sapphira, and how they lied to God, and God killed them for it.  I then tried to teach them about "grace" and how God is "longsuffering" towards us today in that he does not kill us each time we sin, but rather gives us a chance to feel sorry for our sins and repent.

                During services at my home in the evening, I taught on "Lo Que Dios Aborrece y Llama una Abominación" or "What God Hates and Calls an Abomination."  I drew seven points from Proverbs chapter six and verses sixteen through nineteen.   I also found several other points from Deuteronomy, which were that God hates:  1.  Homosexuality (Levi. 18:22 and 20:13), 2. Cross Dressing (Deut. 22:5), 3. The Price of a Whore (Deut. 23:18).

                       

February 23rd 2004 Monday                              This Wicked Flesh!

 

                Most of the morning I spent cleaning house.  Unfortunately, I did not finish.  I also had to copy some CD's for Pastor Jacobo, as well as study my Bible, read part of a book, and purge a lot of useless junk I had lying around.

                I also spent some time thinking about this wicked flesh.  Not only do I despise it for it's sinful nature that always wishes to do wrong, but I loathe its weaknesses, such as sickness, disease, and illness.  Yet again today I felt sick, and I decided I'd sit down and write a poem about this most vile flesh, of which I am more than ready to put off for my glorified body!  It's not much of a poem, and I didn't spend too much time on it, but this is how it turned out.

 

This Vile Body of Sin

By Robert Breaker

 

This vail of flesh and tears I did receive,

From my Father and Mother, I believe.

 

They as well from their parents did inherit,

That sinful, wicked disposition, it is apparent.

 

From their parents as well they did get,

The reprobate nature, that we all have yet.

 

On Adam most are careful to place blame,

Albeit the first to sin, was of course, the dame.

 

And on to all their seed they did pass,

Sickness, disease, and sin, so crass.

 

But all of that to us is neither here nor there,

Let me show you of what you should beware:

 

From the first breath that's taken by this flesh so vile,

The body starts to whine, moan, cry and beguile.

 

With whimpers, tantrums, cries, and pouts,

It learns to get its way and grows in bounds.

 

Slowly it learns to finagle and deceive,

Searching for want it wants and it needs.

 

The more it is fed, the larger it grows,

And before you know it, purity it loathes.

 

Lust, covetousness, pride, passion and desire,

Stronger the ettin beast grows like a fire!

 

The more that it sins, the less it does feel,

On the altar of depravity its known to kneel.

 

On it continues to lie, steal, cheat, and delude,

Thinking only on its self and its passions to brood.

 

With pride and ambition, its self it doth raise,

Living only for pleasure, delight, and praise.

 

Restraint it knows not, nor is want to submit,

And it will fight to the death for all it can get.

 

With hatred, anger, malice, and wrath,

It scorns all those who get in its path.

 

Onward it plunges towards darkness of sin,

Its very nature pressing it onward time and again.

 

Its Master and Maker it shuns to behold,

It thinks only of prestige, power, and gold.

 

Thus, the more that it gets, the more that it wants,

And the more that it has, the more that it flaunts.

 

Thinking itself great, resplendent, and gay,

It knoweth not that someday it must pay.

 

For, truly this mortal flesh not only is cursed,

But surely it was thus from the moment of birth.

 

 

 

 

February 24th  2004 Tuesday                            Sickness, Jose Martir, and Bible Study

 

                I awoke this morning at three with "Montezuma's revenge."  It hit again at four and then again at six.  It stayed with me most of the day, and made me despise even the more this most corrupt and contemptible flesh.  But, I pressed on in spite, and ate a lot of bread and crackers during the day to "plug" myself up.  It seemed to work.

                During the day I was able to actually get a lot of things done.  Beside cleaning house, I rearranged my living quarters, office, and kitchen.  I also was able to study a lot.

                In the afternoon, my old buddy Jose Martir came by to visit me.  He was heading to his home town of "Erindique" (or something like that) to obtain his birth certificate, and wanted to know if I wished to come along.  I told him I was sick, but I did offer to drive him to the bus station, which I did (in spite of constant stomach pains).

                When the boys came for the evening class, I taught them about "The Allegory" that Paul makes between Ishmael and Isaac in Galatians chapter four.  We had a wonderful study, and I showed them how Ishmael was a type of the flesh (he was produced in a carnal union), as well as a type of the law, and bondage.  I then showed them the son Isaac as a type of Christ who was the "promised seed" or the son of promise of which Christ came and brought liberty, salvation, grace, and love. 

                I continued by showing them that Paul was writing to a church (in Galacia) which desired to be back under the law rather than trust solely in Jesus Christ so that they could brag about what they were doing.  Then I showed them the "Heretical Trinity" of "do-gooders" who use the law to put people under bondage.  I showed them that there are those who 1.  Say that one is saved only by the law (pure works), as the Jehovah Witness' and Seventh Day Adventists teach.  I continued by showing them those that 2.  Say it is a mixture of Faith and Works, as the Catholics teach.  And I finished by telling them about those that 3. Say that Faith alone saves, but you must "keep" yourself saved by your works, lest you lose it, as the Charismaniacs, Pepsicostals, Assembly of Dogs, etc. proclaim.  I then said, "All of these are heresies!  What Paul is trying to show us is that faith alone in Christ Jesus and his precious blood saves a man, and frees him from the bondage of the law, and the constant fear that one has by always wondering whether or not he's kept the law "well enough" or "kept himself from sinning" so that maybe God will accept him, but never knowing where they are going when they die.

                As I taught, God gave me a good illustration.  I said, "How many of you go to the bus station and get on a bus without asking where it's going, or how much it costs?  That would be rather stupid, wouldn't it, for you wouldn't know where you were going!  All you would know is that you are riding the bus, but that you don't know where it will end up.  Don't you think you'd want to know where it was going before you entered it?"  They all said, "Yes!"  Thus, I told them, "That's religion!  Everyone's on their own bus not knowing where it's going, but bragging that their bus is the best and the fastest!"  I continued my simile by saying, "However, there's a bus to heaven, and when I went to inquire the fare, I was told, 'The ticket has already been paid!'  When I asked, 'By whom?' I was told, 'The conductor himself – Jesus Christ – bought your ticket with his own blood, and all he asks is that you trust him, get in, and enjoy the ride, for he will get you safely to your destination!" 

 

February 25th 2004 Wednesday                       Quebrada de Lajas, New Friends, and Rowdy Kids

 

                Most of the morning I spent resting, and I was thankful to be able to do so.  In the afternoon, Marbin Rodriguez with his wife came by to visit with me.  They said, "We waited all day on Monday for you to show up at our house!"  I responded, "Well, I was waiting all day here for you to come and pick me up, as you said you'd come here!"  We shared a couple of embarrassing laughs, and then we decided we'd drive out to Quebrada de Lajas right then.

                Marbin introduced me to several different families that lived there that used to come to services with him.  He also introduced me to the Hernandez family, and said to them, "I'm pulling out of Quebrada de Lajas, and I'm turning the work over to Robert Breaker.  I wanted you to meet him, and I hope you'll enjoy learning a lot from him about the Bible."  They seemed happy, and we agreed that I should return tomorrow to their house at one in the afternoon to begin our first Bible Study class. 

After dropping me off at the house, Marbin left and offered me all the best in Quebrada de Lajas.  The rest of the afternoon, I spent trying to study.  However I was bothered by some neighborhood kids that that I'd never met, which came by to visit me.  They began talking with me, and started telling me about their new puppies.  They were so proud of them, that they all ran home and brought them back for me to see.  They were cute little things.  We talked some more and I invited them to come to our services.

                In the evening service, I became quite frustrated.  My newfound friends did arrive in the evening for worship, but the other children were so misbehaved, that it was a shame to both me and them.  I wonder if they will ever come back.  Now I also know why not too many adults come to service.  It's because the children make them think it's only for kids.  And the children constantly joking, and carrying on in an undisciplined manner make them think that it's all a joke.  I will have to work on getting the children to straighten up. 

 

February 26th 2004 Thursday                           Two Saved!

 

                First thing this morning, I took the tire off of the car and found that yet again the brake had come apart inside the drum.  What a constant frustration this is to me!  If only the truck would work without any problems!  But I'm finding that constant problems accompany the ministry like fleas on dogs.

                At noon I left for Quebrada de Lajas with a brief stop at the Internet Shop to check my email.  At one, I visited the Hernandez family for Bible Study.  We conversed for a while before and agreed that each Thursday at four and Sunday at three I should come and hold services at their house.  Afterwards, I taught them about "Salvation."  When I finished, both Ronnie Cruz Hernandez and his brother David accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour through faith in the precious shed blood!  What a blessing that was!

                The rest of the day I spent visiting homes in the area.  I hadn't eaten lunch, and God provided as several people gave me a cup of coffee, and several tortillas with salt. 

                Unfortunately, I ran into one man in one home who proudly said, "I am a 'culero' (homosexual)!"  When he asked me what I though about that, I replied, "That is a very wicked, and ungodly sin, and people who are that way God says deserve to die!"  On and on I continued by telling him what the Bible said about his sin, and how God hates it.  He didn't like what I said too much, but he listened.  He said he'd come to services in the evening, but he didn't show up.

                I also visited Catalino's house.  He was drunk, as usual, but was very happy to see me and invited me into his room.  I sat on his bed and together we talked.  He took out the Bible I gave him and said, "I've been reading this, and I want to show you something that I read!"  He then turned to Matthew Chapter eight and read about the young man with leprosy who said to Christ Jesus, "If thou wilt, thou canst make me clean!"  Emphatically, Catalino said, "You know what Jesus said?  He said, 'I will!  Be thou clean!'"  He then kept saying how great it was for him to know that Jesus wanted to clean him, and save him.  However, he said, "But I'm not ready to get saved!  I can't stop drinking, and I don't want to be a hypocrite.  I know if I trust Jesus, that I can't stop drinking, and I'll be a horrible Christian.  I don't want to play around with God!"

                Nothing I could do or say helped him.  He just kept saying, "I know I need to get saved, but I can't!  I love my sin too much! And I just can't stop it!"  So, I did the only thing I knew to do, which was have a word of prayer with him, and ask God to do whatever it takes to make him want to be saved more than he wanted his sin!" 

                In the evening, I only had seven children come for services, beside Catalino who came in late still buzzing on moonshine.  I preached on "Your Propitiation," using the three verses in the New Testament where the word "propitiation" appears (1 Juan 2:2, 4:10, and Rom. 3:25).  As clearly as I could possibly make it, I showed them Christ crucified on the cross in their place for their dirty, rotten, wicked, ungodly sins!  They listened, but I wonder if it got through.  All I know is that they all claim not to be saved, but are content in coming and listening.  I can only pray that God will open their eyes, convict them of their sins, and show them their need to repent (turn from trusting their righteousness and trust Christ's righteousness) and place their faith in the substitutionary blood atonement of Jesus Christ.

 

February 27th 2004 Friday                                Carlos, Children, and Liberty in Christ.

 

                Carlos didn't show up like he said he would today, so I didn't get to go fishing.  Instead I spent my day resting from a long day of visitation yesterday.  David came by in the afternoon, and not long after some neighborhood kids dropped by.  I taught them how to play Football.  They really enjoyed it.  However, the young children kept asking me for "things."  They kept saying, "We know 'Gringos' are rich, and that they have 'everything.'  So, why don't you give us something?"  I had to tell them, "Not all Gringos are rich!"  But it was hard to make them understand. 

In the evening, I taught in our evening Bible Study from Galatians chapter five.   I showed them how a Christian has "liberty," but that this liberty is not "a license to sin," but rather an opportunity to serve!!!  Then I showed them why we are saved.  We are saved to serve Jesus Christ!

 

February 28th 2004 Saturday                            Bible Institute

 

                Bible Institute went well this morning.   I taught from chapter four of 1 Thessalonians, and had a great time.  Somehow, I got on the subject of tongues, and showed them that in the Bible, tongues are a "sign" (1 Cor. 14:22), and the signs are for the Jews (1 Cor. 1:22).   This made one young man begin asking questions.  He desired to know if tongues were for today.  I showed him biblically that tongues were nothing but a written, spoken language, and that they were given by God to the apostles in a way in which they preached the Gospel in a language they never knew, to people who heard them in their own language (Acts chapter 2).  I also showed them how the apostles were the ones preaching this, and that the apostles had "signs" (2 Cor. 12:12), but how they lost those signs as time went one.

                In the afternoon, Alex, Lindsey, and Victor came for visitation, as well as David.  We visited many houses and invited many people to services.  We also gave out many a tract.

 

February 29th 2004 Sunday                               Baptismal Service!

 

                At eight this morning I left my house with ten people to go to the little aldea "village" of Pinares for a Baptism Services.  Some of the people in my Bible Institute class were there too, and I was glad to see them.  There were over eighty people there in all, and I was asked to preach to them.  I preached, "What Baptism Is," and showed them that it is only a testimony of one's salvation, and is showing others that one wants to be identified as a Christian. 

                Afterwards, we all walked up the road, and then took a path into the woods to the river.  After about a twenty-minute walk, we arrived there and sat on both banks and began singing hymns.  I remember thinking, "This must have been what it was like in the old days, when believers came to Baptismal meetings outside."

                Erick Sanchez and Marbin baptized at least twenty people.  While they were waiting in line to go into the water, a young lady approached me and said, "I want to be saved too, so I can get baptized!"  I took her through the Gospel with my New Testament by my side, and led her to the saving knowledge of the truth by faith in the precious blood of Jesus Christ.   Afterwards, Erick Sanchez baptized her.

                I went last and baptized those of my group.  They included Zarahi, Allen, and Eleazer.  Their Mom was there as well, and was very happy to see them "dunked."  She too is saved, and told me yesterday, "I was baptized by Harold Priday under his ministry years ago."

                At the end of the service, a "Pentecostal" group came to spoil the fun.  To my knowledge, only "Baptist" churches were represented, but after the service at the river, a group came and began announcing an upcoming meeting at the Stadium entitled, "A Night of Glory and Miracles!"  I became rather irate, and spoke with Erick Sanchez about it later, and in no certain terms, told him that I was not only against their doctrine, but didn't appreciate them coming to disrupt our services.  He apologized, but said that he thought it would do no harm.  I'm learning that Erick is more and more leaning towards their way, and I only hope I can straighten him out.

                On the way home, I spoke to my group about why the Pentecostals doctrine was not correct, and I told them why I didn't "clap" and "sway," like some of those present at the baptism, while we sang hymns (it's just too carnal).  They understood, and were in agreement with me.

                After taking everyone home, I drove out to Quebrada de Lajas and held service there.  Then I journeyed home to find all ready for services.  I taught on "Crecimiento Cristiano" (Christian Growth).

 

March 1st 2004 Monday                                     Off to Tegus and Sick Yet Again

 

                And off I went again this morning to Tegucigalpa to have the truck fixed. (This is starting to become a habit!) This time it was a bad bushing on the back right axle that was leaking profusely, as well as a broken brake. 

                Upon my arrival, I turned my vehicle over to the care of Mr. Otto Martinez, and then I went to the Cancer Center to rest.  I was surprised to find Missionary Bill Kepler there.  We spoke for some time, before he had to go airport.  He said he was flying back to the states for his son's wedding, and that he would return again in a week.  I wished him all the best and then dismissed myself.

                The rest of the day I spent resting at the cancer center.  My entire body is weak yet again, and I feel as though I have pneumonia or bronchitis.  Anita, the nurse, checked me out and said I had no fever, so she concluded it was only a cold, and sent me off to my room to rest. 

 

March 2nd 2004 Tuesday                                    Getting the Truck Fixed Free!

 

                I awoke this morning still feeling awful, but finding the grace to bear it.  Missionary Robert Baker came by later and offered to take me around town to run some errands.  In the afternoon I went to retrieve my truck, and was pleasantly surprised to find that they had not charged me a dime for it.  When I asked Otto the reason why, he responded, "Well, it was just a little seal, and I used your truck to run some errands, so I figured I used about as much on gas, as the part cost.  So, we decided not to charge you."  That made me happy.

                Bro. Baker then left his truck, as it too had problems, so I in turn took his place and spent the rest of the day driving him around to do his errands.

                In the evening, Bro. Baker, his wife Connie, Anita, and I had a wonderful dinner of Pork chops, Potatoes, and salad.  It was great to fellowship with other Americans again. 

 

March 3rd 2004 Wednesday                              Heading Home

 

                Bro. Baker had some errands to run this morning, and asked me to take him to do them before I left for La Esperanza.  This I did, and we had a great time of fellowship as we drove all over Tegucigalpa paying bills, checking our mail boxes, buying groceries, and more.

                At twelve, I had to say my "adieu" to Bro. Baker and his wife and drive home to La Esperanza.  There I found several kids waiting for me, asking to play a game of soccer.  I was too tired to do so, so I let them play in the front yard while I went to take a nap. 

                In the evening we had services.  Only "the faithful few" showed up.  I taught about "The Works of the Holy Spirit."  Several of them said they were "embarrassed" to speak to others about the Lord, and asked what they should do about it.  I told them that "boldness" comes from the Holy Spirit, and that they needed to pray and ask the Lord to give them boldness to witness for the Lord Jesus Christ.  I ended with several stories from my own personal experience, and how God always helped me to have the courage to say what needed to be said, whether my flesh wanted to say it or not.

 

March 4th 2004 Thursday                  Sickness, Prayerletter, Services, and Good News

 

                I awoke this morning feeling awful, yet again.  I tried to stay in bed and get well, but David came and woke me up.  I quickly sent him home, and then went back to bed.

                After a late breakfast and a shower, I spent the day writing my February Prayerletter.  I also prepared a sermon for tonight, and printed a discipleship course to teach at the Hernandez home.

                At four, I left the house.  Hotir came with me, and we went straight to Quebrada de Lajas.  Our first order of business was to fix the pulpit in the little house I rent for services.  I put twenty-six screws in it to strengthen it.

                Services at the Hernandez home went well.  I taught on "Eternal Security" (Better said, "Eternal Salvation").  Afterwards I went to our little building for services at six.  Only five children came, and I began to feel a bit discouraged.  However, it wasn't long until Jose Martir and Blanca showed up to service with a good group of people.

                I preached on "Lo Que Satanas Quiere" (What the Devil Wants).  My points were:  1.  "El Quiere Que Tu Pecas" (He wants you to Sin), 2.  "El Quiere Que Tu No Escuchas La Palabra" (He Doesn't Want You to Hear the Word), 3.  "El Quiere Que Tu Andas Perezoso" (He Wants You To Be Lazy), 4. "El Quiere Que Tu Pagas Por Tus Pecados" (He Wants You to Pay For Your Sins), and 5. "El Quiere Que Tu Quedas Perdido" (He Wants You to Remain Lost).

                When we finished services, I received some wonderful news.  Blanca and Jose said they went to the Mayor and put in their request to be married.  They were told to come back on the 12th, and the Mayor would marry them.  So praise the Lord, they shall soon "tie the not!"  

 

March 5th 2004 Friday                                       Birthday Party, Teaching, and Speaking with Bani

 

                I spent some time resting this morning.  When I awoke, I began studying.  I was interrupted by Bani later who came by to ask a couple of questions.  He started with, "What is religion to you?"  I explained that "Religion is a system of works that a man does to justify himself before God.  But religion will not and cannot save for God does not accept a man's works!"  He agreed, and replied, "That's what I think too.  But in school, they are teaching us 'Philosophy' and 'Religion' courses.  They are all sooooo far away from the Bible!" 

                Bani also told me that some of the other American Missionaries here have been talking about me.  They seem to be saying bad things about me, and are angry with what I'm doing here.  I don't have a clue why they should be that way, but I certainly don't worry about it.  In fact, I'm staying away from them as much as possible, so as not to have problems.

                At two in the afternoon, I visited Castillo's house for his granddaughter Stefani's Birthday Party.  She turned four yesterday, and today they decided to celebrate it.  The back yard was full of more than fifty children, and we all had a great time of playing games, breaking open a piñata, and eating.

                One of the games I hadn't seen before.  It consisted of tying a regular pencil to a string around one's waist, which hung down behind them like a tail.  Afterwards, they had to bend over and look between their legs behind them to put the pencil lead first into a coke bottle.  It was quite interesting, and we laughed and laughed as they tried time and again, but utterly failed.

                In evening services, I taught on the subject of "Miracles, Apostles, Signs, Healing, Tongues, and Prosperity."  My motive was to show my students why the "Charismatic Tongues and Healing Movement" was of the devil.  I showed them where the apostles started (Luke 6:13), the prerequisites to being an apostle (Acts 1:21-26), how Paul was an apostle (Rom. 11:13), and how the apostles had signs, wonders, and miracles that accompanied their ministries (2 Cor. 12:12).  But most importantly I showed them how these signs (tongues included, according to 1 Cor. 14:22, and 1 Cor. 1:22), were eventually done away with (1 Cor. 13:8), as Paul lost the power to heal (1 Tim. 5:23, 2 Tim. 4:20), and that there are no longer apostles today, and if someone says he is one, he is a liar (Rev. 2:2), and a false apostle (2 Cor. 11:13). 

                I ended by talking about the "Prosperity Gospel" that is so prevalent today in our society, and showed how God doesn't always want people to be rich (1 Tim. 6:8-10).  In fact, that was Laodicea's sin.  They had so much, that they forgot God (Revelation chapter three).  I also showed them how Peter had no money (Acts 3:6), nor did Jesus, or the other apostles, and how Paul commanded us to be happy with just food and raiment.

 

March 6th 2004 Saturday                                   Teaching!

 

I had a wonderful time at Bible Institute class this morning.  I was still steaming about the Baptism services we had, and how some "Bapticostal" people tried to "get their foot in the door" and use the occasion to invite people to their "Noche de Milagros" (Night of Miracles) Charismatic, ecumenical meeting.  Since most of my Bible Students were at the Baptism, and heard their speech, I decided to put 1 Thessalonians chapter four on hold, and instead preach on "Apostles, Milagros, Señales, Lenguas, Sanidad y Prosperidad," or exactly what I taught last night to my Bible Study pupils.  This I did, and told them correctly why God has quit using "Miracles," as today faith cometh by "hearing" and hearing by the "word of God" (Rom. 10:17), and how God says we are to live by "faith" and not by sight (2 Cor. 5:7), and that those signs were for the Jews, not the Gentiles (1 Cor. 1:22).  I also showed them that Satan when he comes will come with "lying signs and wonders" (2 Thess. 2:9,10), and that all the devil is doing is preparing people to accept him when he comes into power after the true believers in Christ are taken out.

                The rest of the day I spent resting, still feeling awful.  At two-thirty, several came for visitation, and we went house to house passing out tracts, inviting families to services, telling people how to get saved, and ministering to others.  I gave away one Bible today as well.

                After Greek class, of which we studied prepositions, I sent the boys home, and then I went to bed feeling a bit "punchy" from the affects of the beating hot sun we had today.

 

March 7th 2004 Sunday                      Stomach Pains and Service

 

                Oh how I wish I was an apostle at times, and that I had the gift of healing!  That way I could heal myself!  All night I spent in the bathroom with horrendous stomach pains.  My night consisted of continual diarrhea, and bowing myself upon the "porcelain god."  I also slept on the cold, hard, tile floor, which didn't help my health.

                Most of the morning I spent resting, still battling pains in my abdomen.  By the time the afternoon rolled around, I didn't feel any better.  Thus, I didn't go to Quebrada de Lajas for services.  I felt awful in not being able to go, but my health was so bad, I had to stay home.

                In the evening, I had many come for service.  My "faithful few" are Hotir, Alex, Victor, Raul, Lindsey, Zarahi, Carlos, Allen, and Eleazer.  They were all there, and I taught on "What the Devil Wants From You."  After service, I gave Allen and Eleazer a haircut before sending them home.

 

March 8th 2004 Monday                     Sickness, Study, and "Scholars"

 

                My stomach hurt again today, but that didn't hinder me from getting up early this morning.  I hired a young man to do some "stucco" work for me, and when he arrived, we went into town to buy some cement and sand.  When we returned home, I put him to work, and I went inside to rest and study.

                I ordered several college courses on DVD (as I have a DVD player on my computer) several weeks ago, and I've been watching them.  They are supposedly by the "best scholars" around today.  I finished the first course on "Greek Mythology," and started the course on "The Old Testament."  Of course they were secular in nature, and I bought them to practice "discernment."  And how easy it was to see from a Biblical standpoint how Satan is deceiving untold millions of young people as they go off to college.  First, they began by talking about "Myth," and how it has an element of truth in it, but can never be completely proven as true.  Then they talk about "symbolism," "type scenes," "similes," "metaphors," etc.  Then they continue with "criticism," and begin nit-picking the text trying to find errors in it.  This of course is fine with "Classical Mythology," but when they come to the Bible, they approach it in the exact same way.   Rather than believe it as God's book, rather than Man's myths, they approached it as though it were any other book.  And once a student has been "programmed" to doubt the "Mythological" material, he or she is told the Bible is also nothing but Myth as well.

                Not only did my blood boil, as they spoke of the Bible as myth, "riddled with errors," "problematic," "erroneous," etc., but I also found myself laughing at times, as they couldn't even see that they themselves were full of the same.  For example, the teacher of the Old Testament class said that Solomon had 300 wives and 700 concubines, while the Bible says 700 wives and 300 concubines (1 Kings 11:3).  Also she said that Hobab was the same person as Jethro, when the Bible is clear that Hobab was Jethro's son (Numbers 10:29).  And on and on the errors went, while the teacher kept saying things like, "Perhaps," or "It's possible that..." or "Scholars think..." or "It's highly likely that...," etc.  I kept thinking to myself, "Is this the best that "scholarship" has to offer?  All they are giving is what they think or what they suppose to be true, but they have no evidence whatsoever to back up their suppositions.  Every other word is "maybe," or "perhaps," or "probably."  How come they can't come out and say anything for sure?"  The more I watch and see their "Yea hath God said" attitude (from the first "scholar" in History - Satan), the more thankful I am that I didn't finish my "secular" college studies.  And the more thankful I am that I have a book that is the bare naked truth whose author speaks with "authority" (Matthew 7:28,29), and instead of "maybe," "quite possibly," or "it's believed that...,"  tells me "Thus saith the Lord," and "This is a faithful saying...worthy of all acceptation," and "Verily, verily I say unto you!" and "Be it known unto you..." etc.   Thank God that I have God's true (2 Sam. 7:29), and faithful words (Rev. 21:5) from a God that can't lie (Rom. 3:4), and I don't have to trust in man!  For truly "It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man" (Ps. 118:8).  And, "Surely...men of high degree are a lie: to be laid in the balance, they are altogether lighter than vanity" (Ps. 62:9).

 

March 9th 2004 Tuesday                                    The Letter

 

                I spent most of my morning studying and working on my commentary over 1 Thessalonians.  I've made it to chapter four, and things seem to be going well.  I can't wait to finish, so that I can post it on the Internet, so people can read it and get the truth.

                Today was the second day of work for the young man that I hired to stucco the outside kitchen.  He is doing marvelous job, but is a little slow.  However, compassion and patience are in order, as this is Honduras, and that's usually how people are.

                In the evening, only the Cordoba Clan came for Bible Study.  I taught them from Galatians chapter five and showed them the difference between the lusts of the flesh, and the fruit of the spirit.  We also spoke about "vain glory" (vs 26) and why so many today are "Missionaries" or "Pastors" and are working for the Lord not because they love God, but rather because they enjoy the "benefits" such as money, fame, glory, or recognition.  We finished with ways we should "provoke one another" to do more for God.

                After class, Bani showed me a letter from the "retired" Missionary James Foster that was addressed to both he and Pastor Jacobo with some "counsel" to them both about me.  Bani spoke to his Pastor about the desire of working and studying with me, while trying to win those in his neighborhood to the Lord, and seeing a church started here in our "barrio" of El Tejar.  Jacobo then wrote to the old Missionary, who now lives in the states, asking what he should do.  In typical Baptist "Popery" manner, the old Missionary tried to "lord" over God's heritage (1 Peter 5:3), and play God.  He told Bani to "separate" from me, and called me a "Legalist."  This was just too funny for words!  For a legalist would be someone that tries to put others under the law to be saved, or stay saved, which is exactly what I've been preaching against verse by verse from the book of Galatians.  (We should live holy because we are saved, and be careful not to use our 'liberty' for an occasion to the flesh, but serve God out of love, as it says in Galatians 5:13).

When I finished the letter, I asked the boys what they wanted to do.  They responded, "Our father and ourselves have been watching all the other Missionaries here for some time.  And we've been watching you.  We've learned more Bible in a year with you than we ever did in all the time they were here!  Also, you are the only Missionary that is teaching us how to serve God by example, and is actually doing something!  We want to stay with you, and continue learning the Bible, and serve the Lord, and try to start a church in this area!"  I was both shocked and grateful to hear this. 

On they continued telling me story after story about the "other" Baptist Missionaries here in La Esperanza, and some of the things they've said about me to others.  I did not let them go too far with it, and I said, "Let's just forgive them, and pray for them."  We did just that and had a word of prayer.          

Afterwards, we talked about why "Missions" is in such a mess nowadays.  I told them, "It's because Missionaries have for their head a 'Mission' instead of God the Holy Spirit, and they leave for the field with a pocket full of money thinking that they must, 'Build a building' and 'leave physical things' behind so that they can show that they did something for God.  With all the money they have, they "spread it around" and use it to do things "their way" (Laodicea), rather than following God His way, and letting God use them.  Usually they buy property, build big houses, construct big churches, etc. 

But what a Missionary should be interested in are "spiritual things" that will last forever.  First and foremost, he must take a pure Bible to the people.  Thus, for this reason I don't use the corrupt 1960 (And this is one reason why the other Missionaries here are against me).  They must also carry forth the right doctrine of salvation, which is grace through faith in the blood of Jesus Christ alone, plus nothing, minus nothing!  And lastly they should teach sanctification (where other missionaries seem to fall short), which is living holy because they love God and want to please him, and not to try to put people under the law or under them.

The Cordoba Clan saw this, and was glad to see that my desire was to preach and teach God's words, and show others how to serve God.  They not only desire to work with me, but desire to do so of their own accord, regardless of what other "Missionaries" might think, or say about them as well.  They desire to serve God of a pure heart.  What a blessing!

 

March 10th 2004 Wednesday                            Work Finished and Service

                       

The boy I hired to work on the house finally finished today.  He did a wonderful job, but I think he overcharged me.  He wanted 630 lempiras, but he settled on 500 (about 28 dollars).  I paid him, and then invited him to our services in the evening.  I was delightfully surprised when he showed up.

In our evening service, I taught on "Salvation" and showed them some "salient verses" that no one ever talks about.  I also had them copy the verses down to help them in winning souls to Christ Jesus.

 

March 11th 2004 Thursday                               Off To Quebrada de Lajas

 

                Early this morning I did my Bible Study and prayer, and then I drove up to Quebrada de Lajas to do some visitation.  I visited Efrain Martinez's house with the intention of asking him to show me where his mother Doña Susanna lives.  He wasn't home, but his wife let me borrow his two "cipotas" (little girls), and they showed me how to get there.  The road to her house was horrible, with huge potholes, rocks, and steep inclines.  But, we made it safely. 

                Her house sat upon the side of a mountain, and we walked up the steep walkway to visit her.  The house was adobe, and the ceiling was stained black from all the years of cooking inside over an adobe stove with firewood.  The house was so typical of the homes here.  The walls were adobe, mixed with sticks and rocks, and one could see through them through small holes at almost every point.  The dirt floor was bumpy, and dirty, and the doorways into the adjoining rooms were very narrow, which made me think, "A fat person could not fit through there!"

                I was given a small wooden seat to sit on, in which I relaxed and visited with Susanna and her son middle-aged son Pablino, as they took turns grinding corn to make tortillas.  They were nice enough to give me a plate of Yucca (a white root that is like a potato, but very fibrous), and I ate it while we talked about planting corn, working with animals, and the Lord.

                After visiting with them, I took the two girls home, and then went to the Hernandez family's house for our Bible Study.  I taught on "Baptism," and their need to publicly show others that they trusted Christ Jesus as their Saviour.  We tentatively planned a baptismal service in the near future.

                In the evening services, only five children arrived at first, and I began to get discouraged, thinking that God was through with me in Quebrada de Lajas, when Jose and Blanca came with several more children, and Angelica, Jose's sister.  Afterwards, both a young and old men came as well.

                My topic of discussion was that of "Marriage," and I did my best to show them that the man is the "Cabeza" (Head), the wife is the "Ayuda Idonea" (Help), and the children are the "Esperanza" (Hope.)  This of course was not the best homiletical outline in Spanish, but it works well in English.  I ended by stating, "Someone will never understand Marriage until they are saved, for it is a type of Christ and the Church.  Thus, if one is not saved, they must come to Jesus Christ and as a woman accepts a man by faith, they too must trust Him who loved them enough to shed his precious blood for them."

                       

March 12th 2004 Friday                                     It's a Small World

 

                At eight this morning I went to pick up Jose and Blanca to take them to the "Alcalde" (Mayor) Jenaro Sanchez Meza so that they could be married by the civil authorities.  We also picked up Esperanza and Plutarco as the witnesses.  When we entered the Mayor's office, we found another couple there to "tie the knot" as well.  Before beginning, the Mayor read the law and gave many practical stories about Marriage, and talked about what it is, and why it should be.  He also cited the Bible quite frequently, which was a blessing, and stressed that once married, the couple should stay together for society's sake, as well as that of the children.

                When he finished, he had each couple stand in turn, and then asked them "Do you accept this person as your lawfully wedded spouse."  They in turn were to reply, "Sí, acepto" (Yes, I accept).  When he finished, he said something that put me to thinking.  His final words were, "Now, according to the law, I pronounce you legally married."  I thought about this later, and came to the conclusion that Marriage was instituted by God and not man.  Thus, it appeared to me that man was trying to regulate what God set up.   Thus, if the law gives the rules for marriage, and then reasons for divorce, and people want a divorce, they are going to the law rather than God.  I came to the conclusion that more important was one's vow to God, rather than one's word to the law.  Thus, to me the "religious" ceremony of exchanging vows is more important than the "civil" ceremony of gaining the world's approbation.

                When the Mayor dismissed us, I took everyone across the street and treated them to a coke and a piece of "postre" (cake).  There we talked about the "boda" (wedding ceremony), and when we would have it.  Jose and Blanca decided that they wished to have it next Thursday.  I will be presiding, and directing the ceremony, as well as preaching.

Afterwards, we went downtown, to do some shopping, and I ran across many people that I knew.  There I saw Toribio, from Quebrada de Lajas, in who's home we meet for Bible Study.   I also stumbled upon Señor Argueta from the town of Magdalena, in whose house I've stayed on many occasion.  We talked for a while, and I was happy to hear that his brother (that I lead to the Lord), married Elias Marquez's daughter not too long ago.  Truly it is a small world.

When I drove Blanca and Jose home, we met Don Javier who was bringing a truckload of hay for his cattle, and I gave him the good news.  He seemed to very happy, and his whole demeanor changed.  Before he seemed cold towards me, and angry.  But upon hearing the news, he rejoiced, and even came up to the house to eat a piece of celebration cake with us.

                Later in the afternoon, after going home, I walked across the old airport runway and went to visit a "Brigada Medica" (Medical Brigade) at the primary school.  They were only there for one day, and came to see the people, and do what they could for them.  Castillo went early in the morning and had five teeth pulled. 

                The Lion's club was the one sponsoring the event, and they had a team of Medical students, dentists, and nurses there working hard at seeing the people, distributing medicine, and more.

                I asked who was in charge of the event, and a "Gringo" presented me to one Dr. Pat, who said that they were part of the University of Ohio in Toledo that comes every year on their Spring Break for this "Brigade," and that they work closely with the Lion's Club.  When asked how I could have them come to Quebrada de Lajas, Javier's son spoke up, "Hello Robert!  I'm Javier's son, and I'm with the Lion's Club!  You can talk to me!"  This I did, and asked how we could plan a Medical Brigade in Quebrada de Lajas.

                When the time came for Bible Study, only the Cordoba Clan came with Zarahi and her little brother and sister.  We completely finished Galatians, and they look forward to starting First Corinthians on Tuesday.

 

 

March 13th 2004 Saturday                                Bible Institute and Visitation

 

                Most of my students came for Bible Institute today with the exception of Santos Anastasia Reyes.  I taught from the fourth chapter of Thessalonians about the "Rapture."  Afterwards, I had them turn to 1 Corinthians chapter fifteen and we read the account there.  I closed with showing them the "Seven Raptures In the Bible."

                Afterwards, I went to the internet shop to check my email.  I also called my Dad and spoke with him for a while.  It's always good to hear words of encouragement.  And Dad spurred me on with, "You're doing right! We're behind you!  Just keep preaching the truth from the right book, and faith in the blood, and don't worry about what others think about you!"

                In the afternoon, "my faithful few" came for visitation.  We visited from 2:30 to 5:00.  God blessed and we were able to give away one Bible to a house that did not have one, as well as present the Gospel to two people in their living rooms.  They did not trust Jesus as their Saviour, but said they'd come to services on Sunday.  I can only hope they will.

 

March 14th 2004 Sunday                                   The Heart

 

                I drove out to Quebrada de Lajas today and found no one was there for our Bible Study except a few children.  Thus, I sang Christian Children songs with them, and then preached to them about "Jonah."

                Upon my arrival home, I was happy to see a bunch of young people ready for services.  We played soccer for about twenty minutes before we began, but when I called them all in for services, many of them went home.  How sad that they only care about playing, and don't realize they are "playing" with God.

                I preached on "Tu Corazón" (Your Heart), and showed how it is your very being or "psyche."   My points were:  1.  Es El Centro De Tus Emociones (It's the Center of Your Emotions), 2.  Es El Centro de Tu Entendamiento (It's the Center of Your Understanding), 3. Es El Centro de Engaño (It's the Center of Deceit), 4.  Es El Centro de Enamorarse (It's the Center of Love).  I stressed to them their need to keep their heart right and always make sure that they love Jesus Christ more than anything in the world.  I closed with Ephesians 3:17 and showed that when one trusts the blood of Jesus Christ, then they have Christ inside them that can help them live the victorious Christian life in spite of this "deceitful" heart.

 

March 15th 2004 Monday                                   Wedding Recital

 

                My computer went on the brink again, and I had to reinstall Windows XP.  After doing so, I had to journey into town to call the Microsoft company for a confirmation number for the computer.  When I returned home, I spent the rest of the day saving my files to my external hard drive before I erased the "C" drive and reinstalled Windows XP completely with a fresh copy.

                At four o'clock, I journeyed into town to the house of Mr. Erick Sanchez.  He was not home, so I waited for him.  When he arrived, he told me he had fallen on his motorcycle, and for this reason he was late in coming (as he had to fix the damage done from the fall).  We drank a cup of coffee, and then drove out to Quebrada de Lajas to pick up Jose, Blanca, and several others for the Wedding Recital at Plutarco and Esperanza's church. 

                We practiced the entire Wedding ceremony at least four times, in the hopes that they would get it right.  In Honduras, they do some very interesting things, as well as have some rather strange customs.  After they are to say their vows and their "I do's," the custom is that they kneel before the preacher (which will be me), and he lays his hand on their head and prays for them.  This to me seems a little "Catholic."  I have no problem praying for them, but for them to kneel before me makes me feel uncomfortable.  I am thinking of just kneeling with them and praying for them there on my knees as well.

 

March 16th 2004 Tuesday                  Loading Programs and Bible Study

 

                Most of the morning I spent working on installing programs on my computer.  I also spent some time studying for our Bible Study in the evening.  We have completely finished the book of Galatians, and tonight we started First Corinthians chapter one.  It's interesting that in the first ten verses Paul mentions the words "Jesus" or "Christ" or "Jesus Christ" or "Lord" ten times.   Sunday when I preached, I told them that what a man talks about is what a man has on his heart.  My pupils, remembering this, commented, "Paul must have been a man that really loved Jesus Christ because he mentions his name so many times!"

 

March 17th 2004 Wednesday                            Wednesday Night Service

 

                Discouragement came yet again, as we only had five show up for service.  These were my "Cordoba Clan."  Even then, one of the brothers didn't come.  I don't know where Zarahi was, as she is usually present.  Thus, I was even more depressed.

                It's times like these that make me ponder my calling.  Often I wonder if God really wants me here.  It seems the more I try to do for him, the less I see happen.  However, I'm told that I'm supposed to live by "faith" and not by "sight."  Yet, I so often find myself wanting to see people come to services, and rejoice in watching our little church grow.  Sadly it seems to be shrinking.

                I've come to the conclusion that it's not easy to start a church in the Laodicean church period.  Most people just don't want God.  They are more interested in the opposite sex, television, worldly music, etc., which is daily piped into their living rooms and, yea even their minds, via satellite/cable T.V.  How can I compete?  All day long they fill themselves with the world, and now they won't even come to services once a week.  Even if they did come twice a week, that's only two hours of spiritual things, while they spend the rest of the week in the world.  Oh, how can one reach such a carnal and wicked generation?  If ever there was a generation that fulfilled Proverbs chapter thirty and verses eleven through fourteen, this is it.

                I am also learning more about the Laodicean mentality.  Because this generation is so carnal, Missionaries are using "carnal means" to reach them.  When I was preaching at the Baptist Camp, I noticed that the children that came were given candy.  And I perceived that most of the kids only came for this and no other reason.  What ever happened to coming to church because you love God, and want to hear from him?  Now it seems that not too many people come to services with me, because I don't give them "things."  But how can I give "things" when the most important thing is the word of God?  And if people don't come for that, then it's best they don't come at all.

                Well, praise the Lord for five faithful ones that do love God and his word, and come because they want to learn.  I taught them tonight about "Repentance," and what it means Biblically.  I also preached against this worldly, carnal, fleshly, "Laodicean crowd" that say things like, "Repentance is an enemy to the Gospel," or "Repentance need not be preached," or "Repentance need not take place."   I showed them the two definitions of Repentance:  1.  "To feel sorrow for one's sins," and how God repented in Genesis 6:6 for making man and 2.  "To change one's direction" or "to turn from one thing to another", and how when one is saved, he turns from going to Hell to Heaven, or as Paul puts it, "from idols, to the living God," or in another way, "from trusting in one's own righteousness to trusting Christ's righteousness."

                The more I spend time here in Honduras, the more I see how I'm not a Pastor.  I love preaching and teaching, but I'm not good with people.  More and more I desire to be an evangelist, and travel and preach.  For I can see that I'm not good at starting churches.  But I will stay here as long as God wants me to, so that I can learn all that he wants me to know.  I only wish I could see some fruit that would stick, and that I could see a good, sound, Bible Believing Church started, with the Right Bible, the right doctrine, and the right Gospel.

 

March 18th 2004 Thursday                               Wedding Bells!     

 

                Today was the big day.  I spent the early morning hours preparing my sermon for the wedding and the vows.  At noon, I drove into town and checked my email before going to Quebrada de Lajas to see Jose and Blanca.  Their little girl Dilsia was very sick with a stomach virus, and because of it, they hadn't finished preparing completely for the wedding.  I jokingly told them, "That's why you are supposed to have children AFTER you are married, and not before!"

                While they prepared food for the evening celebration, I went to the Hernandez house and had a Bible study with them.  I taught on "The Holy Spirit," from the third booklet of my discipleship course.

                Upon my return to Jose's house, they still weren't ready, and I had to wait for them.  Many people showed up, and we piled them into several vehicles, while Jose and Blanca tried to get everything "just right" for our celebration dinner afterwards.

                When we finally arrived at the church, we were already late.  Add to that the fact that we still had to change, and it added to the confusion.  But by seven o'clock (the wedding was supposed to take place at six), we began.  Erick Sanchez did the opening welcome, and introduced the bride and groom as they came, as well as the children with the rings.  Afterwards, he turned the service over to me, and I preached on "Marriage in the Bible."  I showed them the first wedding was in a garden with Adam and Eve.  Then God commanded that all people marry throughout history to avoid fornication, and that they stay together to keep adultery from taking place.  Afterwards, I showed them that in the end of the Bible there will be the wedding our Lord Jesus Christ with his bride, the church.  And I stressed to them their need to be saved and trust the precious shed blood of Jesus Christ to save their soul so they will be present at that glorious day.

                Afterwards, I presided as they said their, "I do's," which in Spanish is "Si, lo prometo," or "Yes, I promise."  After they said their vows, I had them exchange rings, and then I asked the groom to kiss the bride.  This he did, but it was such a little peck, I felt embarrassed.  But these people embarrass easily, so I understood.

                Next, I had a word of prayer, and then presented them as "Mr. and Mrs. Martinez," or in Spanish, "La Familia Martinez." The rest of the evening we spent up at Jose's house celebrating with Nacatamales, Potato Salad, rice with green beans and carrots, and more.  There must have been over eighty people that came in total, and we had a wonderful time.  Jose said later to Erick Sanchez, "This is my first time to get married, and I think I like getting married!"  When Erick told me this, I though to myself, "Oh Lord!  I hope he doesn't try to get married again with somebody else!"

                On the way home, my stomach began hurting, and I thought back to when I was watching those Indian woman cut potatoes with their "unwashed hands."  And all I could think of was that I had "Indian Germs" in me.  When I arrived home, the pain increased, so I did the only thing I could think of to get release.  I ate a big, juicy red onion, thinking that if it was a virus or bacteria, the onion would kill it!  Believe it or not, as soon as it went down, the pain went away, and I felt much, much better.  I'm going to eat onion much more often!

Text Box: Me with the Bride and Groom
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

March 19th 2004 Friday                                     Resting!

 

                I'm always on the go.  I have to either teach or preach eight times a week.  This includes twice on Sunday's, Tuesday and Friday night Bible Study, Wednesday and Thursday night service, and teaching in the Bible Institute Saturday morning, and giving Greek classes on Saturday afternoon.  This doesn't give me much time to rest.

                So today, I decided I'd just sleep all day long.  This I did, nestled beneath my wonderful new electric blanket.  It felt good to be out of the cold, as today some very hard and mighty cold winds blew in our little vale of San Carlos.  It was wonderful to just do nothing for once!

                But, it didn't seem long enough.  In the late afternoon, I arose and ate lunch, and then had to prepare for my Bible Study Group.  The boys came, and I taught them from chapter one of Corinthians.  Zarahi came as well with her brother and sister, and that thrilled my soul.

                I explained to them the difference between the "Day of the Lord" and the "Day of Christ," or as the text says in verse eight, "The Day of our Lord Jesus Christ."  I pointed out that most critical texts desire to use the terms interchangeably, and how this is a horrendous error, as "The Day of the Lord" refers to the Second Advent, and "The Day of Christ" refers to the rapture.  I further stated how doctrine is changed in the corrupt 1960 in Second Thessalonians, which we just finished studying, when in chapter two and verse two it has a Christian waiting for the Second Advent rather than the rapture (meaning a Christian would go through the tribulation).  Of course, most Christians are so ignorant that they don't see the difference, but there is a difference, and one must "study to show themselves approved." 

 

March 20th 2004 Saturday                                Hollywood Brings in the Antichrist

 

                I've been hearing a lot about a new movie called "The Passions of Christ."  I don't attend the theater, nor do I desire to do so.  However, many "Christians" have been emailing me and telling me that it is a wonderful portrayal of Jesus' life, death, and burial (where's the resurrection?  See 1 Cor. 15:14).  This movie was put out by the famous actor Mel Gibson, and from what I've studied on the internet, it is presented in a "Catholic perspective" and glorifies Mary to extreme proportions.   Yet it seems many "Bible Believer's" are excited about the movie and desire to go and see it.  Even Erick Sanchez here has asked me to go and see it.  I sternly replied, "No!  Faith cometh by hearing, not by seeing!"

                At any rate, I received an email today from my friend in Washington that showed some scenes from the movie.  In it one could clearly see that the actor who played Jesus had his right eye beaten shut. This is quite interesting because the Bible speaks of the Antichrist as having a bad right arm, and a darkened right eye (See Zech. 11:17).  Could it be that this movie is trying to prepare people for the Antichrist?  More interestingly, the book from which the script was taken has a picture of an "all seeing eye" occult symbol in its illustrations.  And Mr. Gibson's movie company that is behind the picture is known as "Icon" (idol?  As in idol shepherd?  See Zech. 11:17 again).  And it's logo is a face with only one eye showing.  How interesting.

                This is why I don't go to the theater.  Truly Satan, the god of this world, is behind the entertainment business, and he is controlling it all to bring in the Antichrist.

                       

March 21st 2004 Sunday                                    Preaching

 

                I hate waiting till the last minute to prepare a message.  To me that's almost a sin.  However, this week as I prayed and read my Bible, I could get nothing to preach on.  I hate it when this happens.  Usually during the week something will happen to give me an idea for a message.  Other times I'll read something from God's words that jump of the page and in my mind form themselves into an outline.  This is always a blessing.  But today I felt as though I had nothing to give the people.

                Thus, I spent some time in prayer, and then did the only thing I could.  I read through some of my old sermons and asked God which one I should preach.  He showed me to preach on "Definitions of Sin" in Quebrada de Lajas, which I did.  Jose Martir and Blanca were present, and we had a great time of fellowship after the message.

                And then for Sunday night service, I preached on "The Life and Times of Stephen, a Man of God."  Service went well in both places, and I could tell God was using me.

 

March 22nd 2004 Monday                  Relaxing!             

 

                Today it was "off to Tegucigalpa!"  I left at four this morning, and enjoyed driving in the dark, early morning hours over the long mountainous curves and seeing the sporadic lights up in the mountains, and the beautiful lines of lights in the towns of the valleys.  As I drove, I also saw all kinds wildlife.  A grey fox ran in front of the headlights on one occasion.   I also smelled a skunk, and had to slow down several times for horses, mules, and cows to cross the road.

                Once in Tegucigalpa, I went immediately to Burger King to feast on an "American" breakfast.  Afterwards, I took my car to the Nutek shop, and then went to the Cancer Center to rest.

                The rest of the day I spent relaxing, and enjoying a day in which I didn't have anything to do!

 

March 23rd 2004 Tuesday                 Mini Vacation, Day Two!

 

                What a blessing it was to do nothing yesterday, and relax.  Today I did the same, except for running a few errands, including mailing Spanish New Testaments to people who asked me for them via internet, going shopping, and checking my email.

                Dizziness accompanied me all day, and I constantly felt lightheaded.  I do not know what is wrong with me, but I bought some vitamins and began taking them.  I hope I get better.

                       

March 24th 2004 Wednesday                            The Passion Film, and Going Home

 

                Finally, the truck was finished today.  When I went to get it, I spoke with Otto for a while.  He, as so many others, brought up the subject of the "Passion" film.  He said he hadn't seen it, but that his family had, and said that it was very gory.  He also told me that he watched "The Tonight Show" the other night, when they interviewed Mr. Mel Gibson, and that he told a story about the actor who played Jesus being struck by lighting twice during the filming of the movie.  My first thought was of the verse in which Jesus said, "I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven" (Luke 10:18).  That doesn't sound too good.  Could God in heaven have struck the man for imitating his son Jesus Christ?  Or could Satan have been coming down to fill the man?  We'll never know.

                Otto also told me that he listened to the Phil Kidd preaching tapes that I gave him.  He said, "I was moved when he gave his testimony and said, 'The innocent died for the ungodly...'"  It did me good to know that he listened to the tapes, and that they helped him.

                In the afternoon, I drove home and found only my Cordoba Clan came for services.  However, while we were singing hymns, two young female teenagers came and joined us.  One was my neighbor who came once before, and with her was her friend from "la frontera" (the border) of El Salvador.  I preached on "The 'ions' Of The Bible" such as "JustificatION," "SalvatION," "SanctificatION," "RegeneratION," etc. 

                When I closed, I asked if anyone was unsaved, and the young lady from the border of El Salvador said she was not.  I showed her some verses, but she didn't respond.  Thus, I gave her a New Testament and some tracts, and asked her to read them, while stressing her need to trust Jesus Christ as her Saviour.  Her name was Maria Rumelia Reyes.  I pray she will get saved, as tomorrow she goes back to her home.

 

March 25th 2004 Thursday                               The Old Drunk

 

                Dizziness is still with me, and I continually have my moments when I feel as though I'm about to faint.  Yet, I continue on.  Today I spent most of the morning studying, and printing up pictures from the wedding to give to Jose Martir and Blanca.  On Wednesday, when I bought groceries, I found some Photo Paper that I could print on.  This I used in printing all the wedding photos in my regular inkjet printer.  I also framed the two best pictures of Jose and Blanca in their wedding attire.  When I drove out to Quebrada de Lajas, I gave it to them, they were very thankful.

                After eating lunch with them, I traveled to the Hernandez house and taught on the subject of "The Word of God."  I showed them the history of the Spanish Bible, and how Satan has messed with God's words.  I then continued by showing how the 1960 Spanish Bible is very corrupt.  When I finished, Santos said, "Can I have one of your New Testaments?  Because this 1960 is messed up!"  I happily gave him one.

                In the evening service, we had a great crowd at the little building I'm renting.  Jose and Blanca came with their family, as well as several other families.  I taught on "Your future."  I asked them what their future would be in this life, and then and showed that there are only two places that one will end up after this life is over – heaven or hell.  As I preached, an old drunk straggled in, and sat down to listen.  He continually swayed back and forth, and I thought he would fall off the pew eventually, but he did not.  On several occasions he would bellow forth a hearty "Amen!" in a slurred manner. 

Once I said, "Many people end up as drunks.  And they spend all their money on liquor and don't have enough money for their families.  Liquor drains all their money, and their future is hopeless!"  At this, the drunk sunk both of his hands into his pockets and pulled out the contents to see if he did have any money.  When he saw that he only had a few lempiras, he again shouted "Amen!"  I couldn't help but laugh.


March 26th 2004 Friday                                     Studying Scholarship

 

                Today I spent watching DVD college courses by "The Teaching Company."   My current class was that of "Lost Christianities: Christian Scriptures and the Battles over Authentication," and today I finally finished all 24 lectures.  The class helped me understand more about the "Gnostics" and the "Ebionites," as well as the "Marcions" and  "Early Church Heretics."  It also taught about "Gnostic Gospels," "pseudopigrapha books," and "other early church writings."  The course in itself was very interesting, and I learned much about the early Christians heresies, and why people would desire to change Paul's words to teach another doctrine or another gospel.

                However, the course attacked the true "canon" of scriptures of the 66 books of the Old and New Testament, and made one think that we today don't have the true words that were written down in the originals, but rather copies that have been changed by people throughout the centuries.  In other words, God didn't "preserve" his words.   This of course would be a God that's not worth shooting, and the logical conclusion to their teaching would be that Christianity is only a set of beliefs put forth by man, rather than God.  

                This is just too much!  If God is indeed God, then he not only inspired his word (2 Tim. 3:16), but also preserved it (Psalms 12:6,7) in the 66 books of the Bible (the King James Bible).

                In the evening, Alex came by and said that he and his brothers had to do homework, and couldn't come to Bible Study, so we called it off.

 

March 27th 2004 Saturday                                Bible Institute Class

 

                We finished chapter five of 1 Thessalonians today in our Bible Institute class.  I taught them about the "Body, Soul, and Spirit" and why it is written "Spirit, Soul, and Body" in the text rather than vice versa (the reason being that God looks at the inside of man first, and man looketh on the outward appearance).  I also taught them about the difference between "grace" and "a blessing."  (In one, God gives you something without making you suffer, but in the other, God let's you go through something before he "blesses" you).

                When I arrived home, my neighbor's children came over to look at my chickens.  One of them said, "Your hen looks like it's setting, I'm going to bring some eggs and put under her, so that you'll have some chicks!"  Thus he ran home for the eggs.  When he returned, he had twelve eggs, which he put under the hen, and then said, "Yep! I know all about chickens!  My Dad made me in charge of all our hens!" 

                The rest of the day I spent resting until my boys showed up for visitation.  We visited many homes, and God gave me a wonderful opportunity to witness to a young man named "Jonas" (Jonah) at length.  He listened to every word, but afterwards said, "I'm just not prepared to get saved now."

                We didn't have Greek class in the evening, as the "Cordoba Clan" had to study for school exams.  Thus, I went to bed early.

 

March 28th 2004 Sunday                                   Pondering the Works

 

                In Quebrada de Lajas, things are going well.  I brought several young people with me to the Hernandez house for services, and we had quite a few for service.  I preached on "The First Sin in the Bible."  That of course being the sin of Lucifer in thinking that he was better than God, or the sin of envy (or pride).  After service, I took everyone home, and then drove back to my house for services at five.

                Upon my arrival, I was happy to see a large group of young people.  We played soccer, but they soon became bored.  When I invited them into the garage for services, they would not come.  They just sat outside on the little rock wall and talked and played with each other.  The more I compelled them to come to service, the more they ignored me. 

When I called them a second time, they began asking me for things.  One said, "You're a rich gringo!  Why don't you give us stuff?  We just came from the Baptist Camp, and they gave us balloons.  Why don't you give me something too?" 

                I explained that the most important thing in the world is the word of God, and if they didn't desire that, then they desired things that did not matter.  To which a young boy responded, "Well, if you don't give me a pencil, I won't come to your services!" 

                Eventually, they left.  David was with them, and was the first to leave.  And the others followed him.  I wonder about David.  He seems very carnal, and not to have the love of Christ, as he does not stay for service, nor does he participate in visitation.

                Only myself and four others (the Cordoba Clan) were present for service.  Later a young lady and her two sisters entered the garage and sat down to listen.  I taught on the subject of "The Sin of Satan and How It Affected Others."  My points were that his sin of "pride" or "envy" brought with it: 1.  "Concupiscencia" (Lust) and that after he fell, he tempted Eve with his same sin, by trying to make her desire what was not her's,  2. "Contenciones" (Contentions) or fightings, and bitterment not only of Satan and his angels against God, but as in the case of Cain and Abel, man against man, 3. "Condencación" (Damnation), and how Satan not only will pay for his sin, but all the human race as well has been cursed by the first man and woman who gave into the devil's temptation.  I also stressed to them that the first sin (envy) was not an open, outward sin, but first started in the heart, and that it is important for them to keep their hearts right with God.

                Before bed, I pondered upon how ironic is my situation.  In Quebrada de Lajas, a very Catholic stronghold, I am seeing people come to services, and we are actually growing.  Yet in my own neighborhood, I am seeing the opposite, as more and more people desire the world and the flesh instead of the things of God.  I would have thought it would have been the other way around, and things in the Catholic area would have grown slower, while things in my neighborhood would have grown faster.  But that is not the case.  Only God knows why.

 

March 29th 2004 Monday                                   Exposing Scholarship!

 

                Although I awoke this morning with a terrible chest cold, I determined with fortitude to do something constructive.  I then began my day studying my Bible with the intent of learning more about the days before and after the resurrection of Jesus Christ (as Easter grows near), as well as solving a "Problem Text" that I heard a secular professor call an "error" in the King James Bible.  My studies proved fruitful, and I found that it was not a "mistake" in the Bible, but rather a blatant aberrance on the part of "Scholarship," which knows not God, nor can understand his "spiritual" book in their carnal, natural minds (1 Cor. 2:14), to read the entire account and come to a logical conclusion.

                In one of the "Lectures" on DVD that I have been listening to about "The New Testament," the professor said that there was a contradiction between Mark 14:12 and 15:25 and John 19:14.  As I studied this, it became apparent that "Scholars" didn't do their homework, and are not only biased against the Bible, and quick to roar against it, but are also very ignorant in not studying to "show themselves approved..." (2 Tim. 2:15).

                Two arguments they find against the validity of the Gospels in these texts.  First they state that the two verses have Jesus dying on two different days.   One of which they call the "First day of Unleavened Bread" (and take to mean the 15th) and the other of which they say is the actual day of the "Passover" (which they take to mean the 14th). 

Secondly, they say that one account has Jesus dying at the "third hour," while the other has him dying at the "sixth hour."  This to the casual reader, and to one that knows nothing about the Bible, would indeed appear to be a contradiction.  However, when one reads the Old Testament as well as the New Testament, these supposed "errors" quickly vanish away. 

                To understand why the two accounts don't have Jesus dying on two separate days, one must understand the Jewish calendar, and how an Israelite counts a day.  According to the book of Genesis, time and again, we read the words, "And the evening and the morning were the ... day."  Thus, a Jew doesn't count a day as does a Gentile.  For a Jew, a day (of 24 hours) begins at the evening, or at 6:00 P.M., and ends the following 6:00 P.M.  For a Gentile, this is foreign, and absurd.  The Gentiles count a day as starting at twelve midnight, and ending twenty-four hours later, or at the beginning of the following day at twelve midnight.

With this in mind, it is clearly seen that during the feast of the Passover, God commanded the Jews to sacrifice the Passover lamb "at even" or at evening (Numbers 9:3-5).  This would then be after 6:00 P.M. (when the sun goes down) or on the very beginning of the 14th day.   This entire day (or 24 hour period) would then be what the Bible calls the "Passover" or "day of preparation" as the preparation of the Passover lamb was to take place on the 14th, at the beginning of the day (which would again begin in the evening). 

Thus, this "day of preparation" would include the entire 24-hour period from 6:00 P.M. until the following day at 6:00 P.M. (See Levi. 23:32).  This can clearly be seen in a number of verses, such as Matthew 27:62 which says, "Now the next day [speaking of the day after the crucifixion], that followed the day of the preparation, the chief priests and the Pharisees came together unto Pilate."  The "day of the preparation" would undoubtedly be a reference to the day (24 hour period) of Passover itself (the 14th) in which Jesus died. 

But in Mark 15:42 we read the words, "And now when the even was come [of the end of the fourteenth, starting the 15th], because it [the day in which Jesus died] was the preparation, that is, the day before the Sabbath..."  And the account in the next couple of verses tell of Jesus' burial by Joseph of Arimathaea.

Scholars take this passage and use it to prove that Mark has Jesus dying the day before the Passover, claiming that the "Sabbath" refers to the Passover feast.  But is this so?  Clearly not as we shall see!  There exists no problem whatsoever, as we remember that the twenty-four hour period of the Jewish day called "The day of preparation" is the Passover.  Thus Jesus, the Passover Lamb (1 Cor. 5:7) was crucified as the Bible teaches on the day of Passover, the same day that they prepared the Passover meal (the 14th).

But Scholars are quick to point out that the above verse says that it was "the day before the Sabbath," of which they erroneously assume to mean the Passover, and they claim this proves the Gospels have Jesus dying on two separate days.  However, an exhaustive study of the Old Testament would show that this "Sabbath" is speaking of the first full day after Passover contained within the seven-day week of the "Feast of Unleavened Bread."  This day, or the fifteenth, (not the Passover day or 14th) is a "Sabbath."

In Leviticus 23:5,6,7 we read, "In the fourteenth day of the same month at even is the Lord's Passover.  And on the fifteenth day of the first month is the feast of unleavened bread unto the Lord: seven days ye must eat unleavened bread.  In the first day ye shall have an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein." 

This "first day" of the feast of "Unleavened Bread" was then a time when one could do no "servile work" or it was a "Sabbath."  This is exactly what is known as a "high Sabbath" to the Jews, as we read in John 19:31, "The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation [the 14th], that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the Sabbath day [the next day], (for that Sabbath day [the next day] was an high day,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away."  The reason the Jews wanted this, was so that they would die, and their bodies could be buried, so they would not be left on the cross until the fifteenth (or day of "holy convocation"), or "High Sabbath," which would began at 6:00 P.M.  (Remember that Jesus died at 3:00 P.M. on the fourteenth, Jewish time, and the other two men had only three hours before the new Jewish day began).

So, without a doubt, Jesus fulfilled the law to the very "jot" and "tittle" in dying on the Jewish day of the 14th or day of the Passover (the 24-hour period), a day before the day of the "high" Sabbath (or the 15th), as both Mark and John tell us.  And there is no contradiction whatsoever!  Nor does the Bible teach that Jesus died on two different days. 

                Next the scholars claim that there are two different accounts of when Jesus was actually crucified, and that in one account he is nailed to the cross at the "third hour," while in the other he is crucified at the "sixth hour."  Let us then look at our two verses again to see if they are indeed correct.

                In Mark 15:25 we read, "And it was the third hour, and they crucified him."  But in John 19:14 we read, "And it was the [day of the] preparation of the Passover [still the 14th], and about the sixth hour: and he saith unto the Jews, Behold your king!" It's very important to look at that last verse again.  It says, "about the sixth hour."  It doesn't say "on the sixth hour."  Scholars should be very careful in trying to prove a holy, righteous God and his words wrong on a word like "about."  What does "about" mean?  According to the Webster's 1828 Dictionary, its meanings include: "around," "near," or "near to."   Thus it wasn't at six o'clock!  It was "about" or "around" or "near to" the sixth hour.  Thus, it could have been the fifth or fourth or even the third hour.      

                There are then only two ways to justify this reading, and prove the word of God right, rather than proving modern scholarship infallible (Rom. 3:4).  First would be to say that because John uses the term "about" the sixth hour, one can not dogmatically claim that the Bible is in error, as the term "about" could indeed include the reading of Mark, where he claims it to be the third hour. 

                However, there is yet another explanation that one could take into consideration.   It could be that John's Gospel is using Gentile time, and is saying that about the sixth hour "Gentile time" (or six in the morning), Jesus was brought before Pilate (Also, notice that John 19:14 doesn't say that Jesus was crucified at that moment.  In fact, it says that at that time "about" six, that Pilate said, "Behold your King!"  It isn't until two verses later that Jesus is then crucified, and it must have taken them some time to take him to the hill of Golgotha.  About three hours perhaps?).  This then would leave us with no error whatsoever, as the rest of the gospels are in complete agreement that Jesus was crucified on the third hour or nine in the morning (Mark's account), and that darkness came upon the land at the sixth hour (Matthew, Mark, and Luke), or at high noon, and that Jesus didn't actually die until the ninth hour (Matthew, Mark, and Luke), or at three in the afternoon.  This would make sense, and would indeed leave the Bible intact, and without error.

                Thus, we would then be able to map out the day of the Passover like so in my following chart:

                Thus, Jesus died on the fourteenth, but wasn't buried until the even (or very beginning of the fifteenth) according to Matthew 27:57-60.  Thus, from the date of the 15th, we must begin our count of three days and three nights that Jesus was in the tomb (Matthew 12:40), in order to see when he arose.  According to Mark 16:2, Jesus had to have risen before the start of the new day on Sunday, or before the sun arose, as we read, "And very early in the morning the first day of the week [Sunday], they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun."  Thus, Jesus must have arisen before the beginning of Sunday Morning (Gentile time).  

                Thus we see in my following chart that Jesus rose again on (or at) Sunday morning and was in the grave exactly three whole days and  nights:

 

                There is nothing like a King James Bible, and a little studying to clear up a Scholar's blunder.  Clearly the Bible is correct, and scholars are showing their continual bias towards it in stating time and again that it is in "error."  I look forward to the Judgment day when they stand before God, and he tells them they were in "error" and will show them their "mistakes."

                       

March 30th 2004 Tuesday                  Studying More

 

                Today I delved a little deeper into the supposed "error" that I studied yesterday, and I found some more verses that Scholars missed that they could have used to dogmatically prove the Bible wrong.  If one buys into their thinking that the "High Sabbath" or "First Day of Unleavened Bread" is the same as the actual day of the Passover, then we have quite a problem with the following verses:

Mark 14:12 says, "And the first day of unleavened bread, when they killed the Passover, his disciples said unto him, Where wilt thou that we go and prepare that thou mayest eat the Passover?"  And again, Luke 22:1 and 7, "Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called the Passover...Then came the day of unleavened bread, when the Passover must be killed."  And Matthew 26:17 which states, "Now the first day of the feast of unleavened bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying unto him, Where wilt though that we prepare for thee to eat the Passover?"

                At a glance, these verses make is seem that the day of Unleavened bread (the fifteenth), and the Passover (the fourteenth) happen on the same day, and that the actual Passover is eaten on the first day of Unleavened bread, which was to be the fifteenth, meaning that the Gospels are not in agreement as to the day that Jesus died.   At least this is the Scholars argument.  But a simple closer reading of the texts, and an understanding of the Old Testament laws given about the Passover and eating of unleavened bread show there is no contradiction.

                When Mark says, "And the first day of unleavened bread..." he is not speaking about the first day of the "Feast of Unleavened Bread" (which starts on the 15th), but rather the first day of the Passover (the 14th), when they must eat unleavened bread.  This is clearly proven in Exodus 12:18, where God commands the Jews to eat Unleavened bread during the Passover.  Thus, "the first day of unleavened bread" is not a reference to the first day of the "Feast of Unleavened Bread" (which begins the 15th), but rather the first day in which they must begin eating unleavened bread, (the Passover).

                Moving on to the verse in Luke, we find that this argument works here as well.  For Luke says they must "kill the Passover" on the day of unleavened bread.  Notice he doesn't say at the beginning of the "Feast of Unleavened Bread" (the 15th).  Thus, he is speaking of the first day in which they must eat unleavened bread, or the Passover. 

                So, most of the supposed "contradictions" can be easily explained with a closer reading of the text.  However, Matthew's account really causes a problem, when he says in Matthew 26:17, "Now the first day of the feast of unleavened bread [the 15th according to the scholars reading of the text] the disciples came to Jesus, saying unto him, Where wilt though that we prepare for thee to eat the Passover" [which is supposed to be the 14th].  This really seems to be a contradiction in terms.  How could Jesus' disciples come to him the day after the Passover was to be eaten, and ask him where he wants to eat the Passover?  This is not an easy one.

                Several options could be given to show this is not an error.  First, one could answer that the "italicized" words in the text make it read incorrectly.  (Not easy for me to swallow, when I'm KJV all the way, and believe even the italicized words in the text are inspired).  For if you take them out, you read, "Now the first of the unleavened bread, the disciples came to Jesus..."  This would make it appear that Matthew is saying the same thing as the other Gospel writers, in that the first day of the eating of "unleavened bread" or the day of the Passover (starting in the evening at 6:00 P.M.), his disciples came to him to ask about preparing the Passover.  This then would prove the Bible correct, and scholars wrong, as the Passover was eaten on the 14th! 

                However, there is another explaination that I believe explains the supposed "contradiction."  This would be the argument that the Passover is part of "The feast of Unleavened Bread" or that God counted the Passover as part of the Feast of Unleavened Bread.  This would explain why Luke would say, "Now the Feast of Unleavened Bread...is called the Passover."

                In studying all the places in the Old Testament which speak of the Passover and Feast of Unleavened Bread, I found the following:

                Exodus twelve makes it clear that the 14th is when the Passover is to be killed an eaten (vs 6). And from that time Unleavened bread is to be eaten seven days (vs 15).  Thus the counting of seven days of eating unleavened bread could begin with the Passover.  This is seen in verse 18 when we are told "on the fourteenth day of the month at even, ye shall eat unleavened bread, until the one and twentieth day of the month at even."

                But in Leviticus 23:6,7 we read "And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the feast of unleavened bread unto the Lord, seven days ye must eat unleavened bread.  In the first day ye shall have an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein."  I must admit that it seemed to me that these two verses seemed to be in discord, that is until I mapped out the days.  Here is what I found:

 

 

                                               

                Scholars quickly would say, "See, you have one account starting the week on the 14th, and another starting the week on the fifteenth!  They are not in agreement, thus the Bible is wrong!"  But, I wouldn't be so hasty in calling God a liar.  The verse in Exodus tells us they had to eat unleavened bread on the Passover, or on the 14th, and that they should eat it until the twenty-first.  This is a seven-day period.  The above chart shows that this is a week in itself.  But the verse in Leviticus shows that they must eat for seven days, and that the first day (which would be the fifteenth) would a "holy convocation" or a Sabbath, and the last day (the 21st) would be another Sabbath.  This then would be a Feast of Unleavened Bread of a week within itself.  And it would start the 15th, and end the 21st, both days being a "High Sabbath." 

I find then no error between the two accounts, as all total, the Israelites ate unleavened bread for eight days.  In one account God commands them to eat from the Passover to until the 21st.  This is one week of seven days.  In the other account, they are commanded to begin counting the official week of "The Feast of Unleavened Bread," from the "Sabbath day" (the 15th) until the 21st (another sabbath day), and again we have seven days exactly. 

                Reading through the rest of the Old Testament, I find this same pattern.  Numbers chapter nine and verse three has the Passover on the 14th, and it must be eaten with "unleavened bread and bitter herbs" (vs11).  And it must not be left until the morning (vs11).  In Numbers 28, the Passover is the 14th (vs 16), and the fifteenth day of the month is the Feast of Unleavened Bread in which they must eat for seven days (vs 17).  Then it says that the 15th is the "Holy Convocation."  In Joshua chapter five, they kept the Passover on the 14th (vs 10), and ate "unleavened cakes" (vs 11).  In 2 Chronicles, they goofed, and had the Passover on the 14th of the "second month" instead of the first month, but in verses 2-15 King Hezekiah made them do it on the second month because they had forgotten to do it on the first month for some time.  Also, the priests were "ashamed" (vs 15).  In 2 Chronicles 35, we find that Josiah kept the Passover at the right time (the 14th), and killed it on the 14th (vs2).  In Ezra 6, we find that even in the captivity, the children of Israel kept the Passover on the fourteenth day of the first month (vs 19), but that they also kept the "Feast of Unleavened Bread"  (15th-21st).

                And finally in Ezekiel 45, the Passover is said to be a feast of seven days, and Unleavened bread was to be eaten.  Thus, we counted our seven days from the 14th to the 21st, and have seven days exactly.  But the Feast of Unleavened Bread (starting on the 15th) is said to begin the 15th (which is set aside as a holy day), and end on another holy day – the 21st.  This is seven days exactly as well.  Thus, we have one week starting with the Passover, called the Passover Feast, in which they were to eat unleavened bread for seven days (Ezek. 45:21).  And we have one week of seven days in which they ate unleavened bread starting from the 15th and ending the 21st called the "Feast of Unleavened Bread."

                This shows that the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread are indeed connected, and that there would be no error if one follows the texts, for in one text, we are told that they count from the Passover seven days from the 14th until the 21st (this is exactly seven days.  But in another text the Feast of Unleavened Bread does not begin until the 15th and then ends at the end of the 21st.  Thus, we have an overlap of the two feasts within an eight-day period.  However, they are so intertwined that to call the Passover "The Feast of Unleavened Bread" would not do it harm, as it is a specific feast (or feasting) of unleavened bread.

                Now, to understand completely these two feasts, we must go back to the actual day of Passover.  In Exodus 12, God tells them to kill the Passover in the evening (the 14th), and eat it.  Then they must put the blood on the door, for at midnight the angel of death came to smite the firstborn.  Those who had the blood on the door were "Passed over."  Then when the sun arose (still the 14th), the children of Israel left Egypt.  Before going, they had to burn what was left of the Passover (Exod. 12:10), and then they journeyed out of Egypt until the evening, or beginning of the 15th.  When the new day begin (remember it starts in the evening) this entire day (which refers to the entire first 24 hour period, which would have to be the 15th, as on the fourteenth they were preparing, eating, and burning.  And this would not be allowed on a "Sabbath day), or the 15th, they had to rest.  Thus, one day out in the wilderness, they rested, and then the next day (the 16th), they continued their journey.  And we are told they journeyed both by day and night, for God appeared as a pillar of fire by night, and a cloud by day to guide them (Exodus 13:21).  

                                               

March 31st 2004 Wednesday                            Paying Bills

 

                I awoke this morning with the same head cold that has been ailing me for days now.  After trying to rest some more, I decided I'd spring to my feet and make breakfast.  As I cooked bacon, eggs, beans, and toast, Erick Sanchez pulled up.  I set him a plate and we had a great breakfast together.  We talked about how his work was going, and he asked me about mine.

                We went to town together later, and I paid the rent, as well as the water bill (Albeit I feel like I'm paying for nothing, as the water hardly ever comes.  Many of my neighbors are suffering from lack of water.  I though am blessed to have a well, which fills up slowly). 

                He also took me to a place to buy some rat poison.  I bought twelve bags, as I've found some mouse droppings in the kitchen, as well as heard something moving around up in the attic.  Upon our arrival home we sprinkled the pellets all over the house.  I hope they accomplish their task.

                At five-thirty I prepared the garage for services.  I was surprised to find David showed up, and I sat him down and we had a good talk.  He seems like a good kid, but he is just misguided.  I told him I cared for him, and was praying for him, and that if he needed to talk to me about anything he could.  I also scolded him lightly for not coming to services, and not doing more for the Lord.   

                Apart from David, only the Cordoba boys came.  I taught on the subject of "Imputation."  I showed them what it is (God imputing his righteousness to us), and how it is obtained (by faith), and how the word is completely removed from the corrupt 1960 Spanish Bible.  They were shocked to hear this.  I then told them that from my understanding (hearsay from others) that the reason being was that when Mr. Eugene Nida, the man behind the 1960 Spanish Bible, saw the word "PUTA" within the word "Imputation," he decided that because that was a bad word, it should be stricken from the Bible.  Of course this is a very lame and sorry excuse to remove the most delightful and glorious doctrine of "Imputation" from the Bible.  

 

April 1st 2004 Thursday                                    When the World is Carnal

 

                I left the house this morning at eleven, and went to Quebrada de Lajas to do some visitation.  For several hours I walked over the mountain trails from house to house visiting the natives and bringing them the wonderful news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Responses varied from listening intently, to flippantly ignoring the message.  But it seemed the more I spoke of Christ, and stressed their need to be saved, the more they not only didn't understand, but quickly shied away.

                As I walked over the wide plains, valleys and vales from house to house, I thought about how carnal people are nowadays, and how I could not understand that so many people years before came to Jesus and trusted him as their Saviour, but how now people just don't seem to care.  I also thought about how most churches are so "carnal" and it's by carnal means that they get people to come (i.e. Flesh-tickling music, applause, movies, giving away "stuff," passing out candy, etc.)  As I dwelt upon these things, I came to the conclusion that the entire world was not only deceived, but was carnal - the church included.  And as I walked in silent solitude with my thoughts, the constant question kept plaguing me, "How can I compete with Carnality?"  If people are carnal, and want carnal things, then I have exactly what they don't want – something spiritual!  How then can I start a work in a world totally given to the flesh?  How then can I teach them to be spiritual, if they want not the Spirit of God?

                This thoughts and others haunted my imaginations as I walked the long dirt trails.  At each home, I could see more and more "carnality."  People had televisions (which they ran off of car batteries, as they have no electricity in their homes), which showed the world all day long, and radios, which piped in the accursed devil's beat into their minds throughout the day, and more.

                Most people were Catholic, and when I talked doctrine, I found they were trusting their works (self righteousness, or what they could do in their flesh – i.e. carnal self).  The more I tried to show them the Spiritual truths of the Bible, the more they turned away from it.

                As I made my way back to the truck, the thought struck me, "Is not the Holy Spirit working on the hearts of people anymore to bring conviction?"  It used to be that people would tremble and shake at the thought of dying and going to hell (Acts 24:25).  But now they laugh, and take it lightly, like Mr. Javier today when I spoke with him.  He asked me, "How are you?"  I replied, "I'm sick, but at least I'm saved and I know if I die, I'll go to heaven!  And how about you?"  He quickly retorted, "Oh, I don't know until the day of Judgment, but either place is fine with me.  Hell even sounds better, cause I hear the devil pays better!  He's got the cash you know!"  Seeing that it was all a joke to him, I responded cunningly, "Maybe so, but the gold is in heaven.  Money is only a piece of paper down here, and that'll burn, but gold will last through the fire!"  He couldn't respond and quickly shook my hand and walked away.

                But what is it that makes a sinner shake, tremble, quiver and quake with fear?  How is it that the more I preach the more they take it lightly?  Is not the Holy Spirit supposed to reprove them of "sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment?" (John 16:8).  Where is he then?  I just feel like I'm not doing any good here.  The more I try, the more it seems that carnality wins against the Spirit.

                Could it be me?  Am I not filled enough with the Holy Spirit that he can use me to preach and say the right words that will make the sinner come to a point of repentance?  What, oh what, is the answer?  I pray, read my Bible, and ask God to fill me and use me for his glory.  What then do I lack?  I know purity brings power, and I'm trying to live pure, sanctifying myself in the word (Eph. 5:26).  Why is it then that I can see no results?  Why is there no revival?  Why aren't souls getting under conviction?

                And what can I do, one man against an entire carnal world, to make people get saved, and want the spiritual more than the carnal?  Would to God that he would show me how to deal with these people.  If there was something that I could do or say, I'd gladly do it if they'd get saved.  But it seems the more I preach to them the "foolishness" (1 Cor. 2:14) of God's word, the more they count me a fool. 

                To add to my deliberation, I had only eight children in the evening service.  My analytical mind began to question, "Why do only children come?  Why don't their parents want to learn about God?  Why don't they come as well?"  In spite of my impatience, I preached to them about the love of God.  I said, "Jesus loved you this much, as he spread his arms and died!"  And I spread my arms to show them Christ on the cross.  Afterwards, I asked them to think of a schoolmate that was their friend.  They all thought of someone.  Then I asked them if they would die for that person.  They all said, "Yes!"  Then I asked them to think of someone in their class that they didn't like, or was their enemy.  They all thought of someone.  Then I asked, "Would you die for them?"  They in unison replied, "No!  Because we don't like that person!"  I then told them that they had not the love of Christ, for Jesus died for his enemies, or for all sinners, and that was real love.  I can only hope the message sunk in.

                Afterwards Martir and Blanca showed up with some more people, and rather than close the service, I continued by giving my testimony.   They listened as I told them about how I was born again, yet before coming to Jesus, I was afraid of dying.  But now that I'm saved I have no fear of death, nor dying.  Truly, as Paul said, "For me to live is Christ and to die is gain." (Phil. 1:21).  Many of the children there could not say the same, and said they were afraid of dying, and they didn't know where they would go when they died.  I then told them how my father had won me to Christ, and how I finally understood that because of God's great love, he willingly shed his blood for me, his enemy, who had sinned against him, and that when I trusted that precious sacrificial blood atonement, the work of God, and not my own work (or works), I was not only saved, but was free from all fear and doubt!

                I then closed with 1 John 4:17-18, which states, "Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.  There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment.  He that feareth is not made perfect in love."  And I made the point that I feared not where I would go when I died, for I had "boldness" through the blood of Jesus that I would not go to Hell to be tormented, but rather to heaven because I came to Jesus who loved me enough to die for my sins and wash me from them in his own blood (Rev. 1:5).  I can only hope the message sunk in, and that God the Holy Spirit would use the message to reprove them of their sins, and show them their need to be saved.

 

April 2nd 2004 Friday                                         Giants and Grapes

                       

                Today was the first time in a long time that I actually awoke feeling well.  First thing this morning I read my Bible, and found some rather interesting things.  In chapter thirteen of Exodus, God sends the 12 spies into the promised land.  They find big grapes, and big men (giants).  When they return in chapter thirteen, they begin to murmur, and doubt that they can take the land (except for Caleb and Joshua).  Right on the verge of what could have been their most triumphant moment, they chicken out, and become disheartened, and give an "evil report," causing the people to doubt.  God then became angry, and vowed that none of those that murmured would enter the promised land, and that for forty more years they would have to wander in the wilderness.  Then in chapter fourteen and verse thirty-seven I read the shocking words, "Even those men that did bring up an evil report upon the land, died by the plague before the Lord."

                As I read this, I thought hard upon it.  Those men were "almost" heroes.  They could have led the charge against the giants with God on their side and won, if they had only trusted in the Lord.  Instead, they trusted in their own strength, and knew they couldn't do it on their own.  In so doing, they were doubting God, right on the brink of him giving them what he promised.  And because of it, capital punishment was met out upon them.  That's capital punishment for doubting God!

                I applied that to my situation.  At times, I too doubt if God is going to bless me here, and use me.  I wonder if I'm doing anything right.  I look at the giants (downfalls), rather than the grapes (those I do have), and I think that I just can't do a work for the Lord, I'm just not any good, and I can't do anything right.  But as I'm learning from the Old Testament, it's God that does the work, and God that gets the glory, I'm just an instrument that's there for him to use.

                This helped me greatly.  I also could see the application of the "Amalekites" in verses 43-45 as a type of the flesh.  And  I identified with how they "discomfited" the Israelites.  It's so easy to be overtaken by the flesh, and thus lose faith in God.  I only hope and pray that God will make me a Caleb, or a Joshua, and use me for his glory.

 

April 3rd 2004 Saturday                                     Teaching, Visitation, and Attending an Anniversary Service

 

                I taught at the Bible Institute this morning, and we continually got off the subject at hand.  My students asked about things such as: "What's the difference between Jehovah Witness's and 7th Day Adventists?" "What happens to those that have never heard the Gospel when they die?" and more.  I happily answered all their questions with scripture.  They seem to be enjoying my class, and I can tell they look up to me.  That's a real blessing.

                Afterwards, I went home and waited until my young "visitation partners" came.  We visited several houses, but were cut short by a very heavy downpour.  The first rain has come, and though the mud it leaves behind is a constant hassle, it's very much needed and appreciated.

                In the evening, I went to Ramon Galeano's church for their 23rd Anniversary.   There were some preachers there from Puerto Cortes, one of which was my old friend Arturo Palau.  It was good to fellowship with him again, and find out how things are going at his church.  He also invited me to preach the next time I was there. 

 

April 4th 2004 Sunday                                        Rain and Mud!

 

                Early this morning my neighbor Julio Cordoba came over with his brother-in-law, named Jeremias Lorenzo.  He lives in Boston in the United States, and works as a "Diamond Cutter."  We talked for some time and I told him about how I used to work in a Jewelry store in the U.S.

                After they left, I spent some time in prayer and Bible reading before I had to drive out to Quebrada de Lajas.  As I left, thunder bellowed forth across the sky with heavy, gloominess shattering.  Then the sky let loose a soaker.   When I arrived, there was mud everywhere.  When I made my turn to go to the Hernandez house, I found a car stuck in the middle of the road.  I tried to pull it out, and then became stuck myself.  But, God was good, and sent us several Indian people to push us out (him up hill and me downhill).  We finally passed each other with out going into the ditch, and then went our separate ways.  By this time it was already four o'clock.  So, when I stopped at the Hernandez's house and told them what had happened, it was already time for me to go.  I then bid them give me leave to go back home for service at five.  Before I left, they let me hold the new baby named Ever Omar Hernandez, the son of Emilia (Toribio's "woman's" son). 

                In the evening, we had a great time in service.  I taught on "The First Human Sin."  I showed how Eve sinned first (1 Tim. 2:14), and her sin was "adding to the word of God."  I then took them through three verses in the Bible that told us not to do that.  First was Deut. 4:1,2, and from that verse I showed them that to add to God's words, means one won't keep his commandments.   Next I showed them Proverbs 30:5,6, and I taught them that to add to God's words is to make one a liar.  This is what Eve did when she added, "Neither shall ye touch it."  God didn't say that.  Eve lied!  I closed with Revelation 22:18,19.  I spiritually applied this verse in saying that all the "plagues" that we have in the world today come from the first sin of Eve, in adding to God's words.  And I showed that those who shun God's words, will not be saved, for it is only the words of God that can save our soul (James 1:21).  My points were that her sin brought 1.  "Mal" (Wickedness), 2. "Mentiras" (Lies), 3. "Muerte" (Death).

                Afterwards we played Soccer in the front yard.  It was pitch black outside, and the only light we had was from the full moon low on the horizon.  The "Cordoba Clan" was there with Zarahi and her brothers and sisters.  Eventually, I moved my truck to one end of the field, and then turned the lights on so we could see.  We played at least an hour having a great time!

                I also learned about "astronomy" as the first stars appeared.  Bani, who has studied the topic quite extensively, told me, "Look up there [pointing to the North], that's the North star!"  I responded, "Yep, I've seen that before!"  But then he said, "Now look to the South.  That's the South star!  The North Star is only visible in the North America, and the South Star is only visible in South America.  But here in Central America is the only place that one can see both."  This was amazing to me.

 

April 5th 2004 Monday                                       Off to Tegucigalpa Again

 

                I left at three-thirty this morning for Tegucigalpa.  It is always soothing to my soul to drive in the early twilight, and to enjoy the peace and tranquility of the early morning hours.  When I arrived in Tegucigalpa, I went straight to Burger King (civilization) for breakfast.  Afterwards, I drove to the Cancer Center to obtain a room, and leave my stuff.  When I pulled up to the gate of the Institution, I found that it was closed, but that Bro. Bob Baker was there.  After shouting a few times, he came and unlocked the gate.  We fellowshipped for quite some time (and I even had breakfast again with them), before we drove up to Otto Martinez's shop to leave my truck.

                The rest of the day I spent running errands with Bro. Baker, and talking with him about many different things.  It's always good to have fellowship with like-minded individuals, and to be able to identify with some of the hardships and suffering, as well as persecution and slander they have endured. 

                In the afternoon, Bro. Baker took me to the "Megatel" office, and I did something I thought I'd never do.  I bought a cellular telephone.  Now I'm officially, and in a way shamefully, a "Modern Missionary."

 

April 6th 2004 Tuesday                                      Stressed?

 

                I awoke feeling bad again today.  While we were eating breakfast, Bro. Baker told me that my illness was probably due to the fact that I was "stressed out."  I bid him explain, and he said, "Well, I've been listening to what you've been saying.  You're working very hard during the week, and have not much time to rest.  Not to mention that you are worrying about what other Missionaries are saying about you, and what churches are thinking of you."

                This made sense.  I guess I am "stressed" in some ways.  I asked him what one is to do for stress, and he said, "Get plenty of rest, and don't worry about anything.  Just remember God's in charge!" 

                The rest of the day, we spent running errands.  Even though I felt bad, I had things to do.  This was not an easy task, however, as this is "Semana Santa" (Holy Week, or the week before the Passover), and many places were closed. 

                In the evening, I decided to drive home, but felt so bad, I thought I'd just stay another night.  I'm glad I did, as I received my first phone call to my new cell phone in the evening.

                       

April 7th 2004 Wednesday                 The Vanity of the Flesh

 

                Bro. Baker and I ran some errands today.  Fortunately, Pricesmart was open, and I was able to buy some groceries.  After running Bro. Baker to the Mall, I took him back to the Cancer Center, and then I drove home.

                In Comayagua, I stopped at the new Wendy's restaurant, which has recently opened there.  How great it was to see civilization is coming even closer to home. 

                In Siguatepeque, I stopped for gas at the Texaco station.  When I opened my car door, I was blasted with the cursed, demonic jungle beat of "Rap Music" from a DJ with huge speakers standing at the door.  With him were two young ladies, scantly dressed, dancing.  I asked the attendant, "Why do they let them play music that loud?  That's awful!  That constant beat gives me a headache!"  The attendant agreed.  Then I noticed the young ladies dancing and having a good time, where passing out promotional leaflets.  I decided it was time to "tract 'em."  This I did, and I gave a tract to everyone at the gas station. 

                When I asked the man behind the turntable, "Why is this so loud?  Haven't you thought that there might be some people that don't like it this loud?  Can't you turn it down?"  His reply was, "Hey man, I get paid for this!"  I wish could have paid him to shut it off!

The "dancing girls" were also full of vanity.  From a distance they appeared to the flesh attractive, but when I looked them in the face and told them that Jesus died for them, and gave them a tract, I could see nothing but moles, and zits – imperfections.  Then I thought, "That's the flesh for you.  It looks good from a distance, but when you get close, you see it as it really is!"

                On the way home, I thought about how wicked the flesh is.  These words formed in my mind as I thought about the flesh's conception in the garden of Eden when Eve and Adam sinned, "Vanity it is, for it was in vanity it was conceived!"

                Upon my arrival at home, I ran into a huge rainstorm.  After unloading my groceries, I waited for my people to come to service.  No one came, I figure because of the storm, which continued long into the night.

 

April 8th 2004 Thursday                                    Cold and Storm

 

                I awoke this morning feeling worse.  I have a cough, which one day seems loose, showing that it's almost gone, and then the next day quite tight, showing that I'm getting worse.  As I studied and prayed today, I tried to get well.  I flocked to my heating pad as a deer to the forest, or a fish to the deep of the sea, and kept it tight to my bosom, hoping it would help cure my ailment.

                In the afternoon, a very awful storm came and blew four sheets of metal sheeting off the tin roof.  Water began pouring into the guest room, and I had to move furniture in order to keep it dry.  By the time I was supposed to go to Quebrada de Lajas, there was mud everywhere, and the storm looked to be worsening.  So, I stayed home and rested, knowing that no one would come for services in such a disaster.

                       

April 9th 2004 Friday                                          Fixing the Roof

 

                Little better I awoke this morning.  But the luxury of rest escaped me, as I had to fix the roof.  Castillo and I together worked on it, and we were blessed to have Erick Sanchez come by to visit.  He crawled up on the roof with us, and together we finished the job rather quickly.

                As we hammered in nails, and screwed down parts of the sheeting, Erick started talking about "salvation."  I could tell he was subtle, and was speaking about it for Castillo's sake, not knowing if he's saved or not.  He began by saying, "I heard on a radio today that people were calling in and answering the question 'What is salvation to you?'  Many answered that it was works, or doing good to your neighbor.  But I believe it is by faith in Jesus Christ."  I quickly responded in the affirmative, and added that it was specifically faith in the shed blood of Jesus Christ, and we both looked at Castillo, to see if he would reply.  He did not.  So, we just went on talking about why salvation is by Jesus Christ, and how one cannot save himself.

                We also talked about "Good Friday" and why the Catholic Church is completely wrong in saying that Jesus died on a Friday.  The reason being, is that they don't read their Bible, and if they do, they don't understand what they read.  They celebrate Friday as the day Jesus died, because they read that the next day was a "Sabbath" which they take to mean a "Saturday."  However, it would do the Pope good to actually read the Bible for a change, and study it, for he would find that it was a "High Sabbath," and that Jesus died on a Wednesday (see my chart in March 2004).

                Castillo couldn't understand this, so I had him count backwards from Sunday morning three whole days and three whole nights.  He did, and he couldn't come up with Friday.  Neither could I.  Could it be that myself and a Honduran Indian man are smarter than the Pope?  For we can count and he can't!  How interesting!

                In the evening, no one came for services, as this is the "Semana Santa" and people usually take it as a "vacation" and travel somewhere with their family.  Also we had a heavy downpour in the evening as well, making me glad we fixed the roof.

 

April 10th 2004 Saturday                                   The White Rooster

 

                After prayer and Bible reading, I took a shower.  The verse from Isaiah chapter forty came to mind again.  And, constantly began running through my head, "...they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk and not faint."  It stayed with me most of the day, and I thought about how I need strength (as I'm sick all the time), and how I would like to run (rather than be weary and faint in health).                                

                In the afternoon, I journeyed out to Quebrada de Lajas to visit my people, and tell them why I didn't come on Thursday for service.  They all said the same thing: "We figured it was for the storm, and it was raining so hard, we probably wouldn't have come anyway." 

                We also fixed what time I'd come to pick them up for services tomorrow at my house for Easter Sunday.  I also took Ovilio and his wife Angelica the pictures I snapped of them and framed.  They were happy with how they turned out.  I guess I can now add "Photographer" to my resume.

                Of course they wouldn't let me leave without eating, and I had to oblige myself.  They cooked me a good lunch of beans, eggs with tomatoes, and tortillas with cheese.  They also took me to their garden and gave me four heads of lettuce, some radishes, and several stalks of "Cilantro."

                As we talked, I was surprised to see a huge, white rooster continually entering the kitchen.  I noticed one little girl had a bag of blackberries, and I asked her what they were for.  She replied, "The rooster likes to eat them!"  I couldn't believe it, so I asked her to show me.  She then put a few on the ground and the rooster came running.  I watched in amazement as he ate each one with a single gulp! 

 

 

 

April 11th 2004 Sunday                                      Easter Sunday

 

                Early this morning, I picked up the Hernandez family and took them to Jose Martir's house.  When Blanca and Martir were ready, I drove them with Angelica's family to my house for Easter services.  The "Cordoba Clan" came to services, as well as some neighbors, and several others, and we had a great time of fellowship.  The men played soccer, while the woman cooked lunch.  I spent my time between the two, as well as eating Blackberries from the bush with the children and telling them "cuentos" (stories). 

                We were to start at eleven, but waited for more people to come.  Eventually, Zarahi, her mother, her brothers and sisters, and cousin came, and we began.  It was a good crowd, and we had about forty in all.  I preached: "On Which Day Did Jesus Die?"  I showed them the chart I'd been working on as well as some verses from the Bible, and several of them were surprised to see that Jesus didn't die on "Good Friday" (what's 'good' about it?), but rather on a Wednesday.  I heard several say, "Wow!  I never thought about that before!  The Catholic Church is wrong!  Jesus didn't die on a Friday, as that doesn't leave three days and three nights for his body to be in the grave!"

                Afterwards, I quickly took them through the "Seven Sayings of Christ on the Cross," and stressed to them that only Jesus Christ can save their souls from Hell.  When I closed, several raised their hands signifying that they weren't saved, but none came forward at the invitation.

                After prayer, we feasted on a wonderful meal of fried chicken, refried beans, salad, rice, and tortillas.  How great it was to have a huge crowd at my house to fellowship with.  I thought to myself, "I wish we could do this every Sunday!"

                While I was driving everyone home, my old buddy Hernan stopped me and invited me to come to his "Camp" in the afternoon.  He gave me directions, and I agreed to meet him there.  After dropping everyone off at Quebrada de Lajas, I then drove to the "51st Kilometer marker" (his directions) and found him there waiting for me.  He then lead me up the hill to a nice piece of property just off the main highway, and said, "God gave me this place to start a Campground on, and I wanted to show it to you!" 

                Before taking me all over the property to see it, he introduced me to some family of his that was visiting.  Two of the people there (named Lizabet and Asbel) were "Catholic" and I had the great privilege of taking the Bible and showing them verses on why they needed to trust Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour, and how the Catholic Church can give them no assurance of salvation.  I showed them how Jesus is the only Mediator (1 Tim. 2:5), how the Mass can't take away their sins (Heb. 10:10-12), how Mary wasn't a "perpetual virgin," but had other children (Mark 6:3,4), how according to the Bible, one can know they have eternal life (1 John 5:13), and more.   They didn't get saved, but they heard an earful, and listened intently.

                Hernan and his wife also asked question after question about topics such as, "What does the Bible say about the soul?" "What does the Bible say about Marriage?"  "What does the Bible say about Why the Father Forsook the Son?" "What does the Bible say about Tithing," and more.  I answered their questions with scripture, and had a great time teaching them Bible.

                At dawn, I took my leave of them, but only after leaving some Gospel tracts for the Catholics to read, and then I drove home.  Upon my arrival, Bani came to the house and brought me the news, "Mike Lane is back!  He came yesterday afternoon!"  He continued by saying, "He wants to talk with you tomorrow!"  I thanked him for the news, and gave him some fruit and leftover vegetables for him and his family.  Then I spent the rest of the evening cleaning house, as my guests left the kitchen in much disarray.

 

April 12th 2004 Monday                                     The Day After

 

                I awoke early this morning and took a nice, hot shower.  After breakfast, I read my Bible from the book of Numbers and happened upon the children of Israel again "murmuring" against God.  This time it was after they won the victory.  And for this God sent fiery serpents to torment the people, until Moses fashioned the brazen serpent.  How interesting it was to see that even when the people of Israel were doing well, they still complained (this flesh is never happy), but God was faithful and showed his grace by even in afflicting them, he gave them a way of escape (the brazen serpent).

                At ten this morning Mr. Mike Lane came by to speak with me.  I invited him in, and we sat down at the kitchen table and talked for several hours.  He told me about how his wife did try to kill herself in a dilapidated state, but is now doing much better.  He also advised me of how the other Missionaries here are against him coming back to the field, and are cold towards him and his wife.  I felt sorry for him, as he seemed to want only to continue serving the Lord. I told him I'd help him in anyway I could. And I stressed to him that he had a friend in me, even if the whole world was against him.

                When he left, I spoke with Castillo, asking about his vacation, and how his "Semana Santa" went.  He told me of the great time he had with his family, and how wonderful it was to rest.  I also asked him about the whole "Semana Santa" week and how it's celebrated from a "Catholic" perspective.   He said they worshipped the whole week, but when Sunday came, they didn't really make a big day of it.  I responded, "How strange that they worship the entire week, but the most important day, the day in which Christ arose, they do nothing!"  That set him to thinking and he replied, "Yeah, they seem to forget the most important thing – the resurrection.  And that's the most important day, isn't it?"

            That just goes to show you how Catholics and Catholic countries think.  To them, the most important thing is what led up to his death (his suffering, or his "Passion" as they call it), and they enjoy celebrating a dead Jesus on the cross, rather than a live Jesus in heaven that rose again the third day, according to the scriptures (1 Cor. 15:3,4).  Yet, we in the United States (a "Christian Nation" not founded on Catholicism, but rather the Bible), look to the resurrection as the most important thing, for without it, we could not have eternal life.  He died to pay for our sins, but he also resurrected (proving he was God in the flesh) for the most important task of offering his blood on the mercy seat in heaven, so that we could be saved, and go to heaven when we die (1 Cor. 15:17).  Without the Resurrection, there is no salvation.

                At lunch time, I drove into town to pay my light bill, and check my email.  While in town, I stopped and talked with Bro. Ramon Galeano.  The more I speak with him, the more I like him.  He, as myself, believes that sometimes Missionaries hinder the Gospel, rather than help to get it out, and that there are many Missionaries who think they are better than the national people here, and use their money to make themselves look like they are doing more for the Lord.  However, they are only building works that are dependent upon money from the states, and they don't turn over their works to nationals whom they've trained to do the job.  Lord, help me to do the work of a good Missionary, and to be able to leave works behind that will continue on without me, or my "American offerings."

                The rest of the day I spent resting and trying to get well.  My cough is bad again, and I bought some antibiotics today in hopes of getting better.  Thus, I spent several hours under the heating pad in the afternoon, before rising and working on rearranging my office. 

I also had to spend some time trying to kill all the "flies" that are in the house.  The Honduran people are not very clean people, and add to that the fact that they always leave their front doors open, as people are always coming in and out.  While they were working in the kitchen yesterday, I continually asked them to keep the door shut, but they would not.  Thus, a swarm of flies came in.  But, such is the cost of loving people, being nice towards them, and trying to help them.  I guess I can suffer a few flies for the Kingdom of God's sake.

 

April 13th 2004 Tuesday                                    The Pope, Los Dolores, and One Saved!

 

                Last night I had the strangest dream.  I dreamt that the Pope stayed in my house.  I gave him the guest room, and showed him the refrigerator where he could get something to eat and drink.  Afterwards, I let him rest, and I kept thinking how great it would be when he awoke to show him some things in the Bible, and explain why his religion was false.  But when he finally awoke, and I began to speak to him, I was disappointed to find that he spoke neither English nor Spanish, only Italian and Latin, and I was unable to communicate with him at all.

                Today I had to take Martir and Blanca to Los Dolores with Francisca.  They received a note from her parents a few days ago saying that they want their daughter back.  However, they supposedly "regaló" (gave) Francisca to Martir and Blanca to raise.  The note said that if they didn't bring her back quickly, there would be "problems."

                When we arrived in Los Dolores, we immediately went to Blanca's father's house named Ichabel Sanchez.  We met Gregorio as well, who turned out to be Blanca's uncle.  There I had the wonderful opportunity to witness to Gregorio, Ichabel, and Juan Carlos (Blanca's brother).  I showed them verse after verse about how Christ Jesus died on the cross for them and shed his precious blood to pay for their sins.  They listened, but decided they would "wait" till another day to trust Jesus Christ as their Saviour. 

                As we sat and talked, Victoria, Francisca's real mother, came and sat down on the porch.  She had a haughty spirit, and was angry about them not bringing her daughter back sooner.  Even though the agreement was that she and her husband had "regalada" (given Francisca away) to Martir and Blanca to raise as their own, they decided they wanted her back, and were quite rude about it.  Poor Francisca was caught in the middle of this, and didn't want to go back to her real mother, saying, "Martir is my real father, and Blanca is my mother!  I don't want to go back to that lady who gave me away!"

                Taking Francisca back to her real mother was one of the hardest things I had to do.  It was clear that Victoria didn't love her daughter, and that Martir and Blanca were taking better care of her than her real mother ever did.  But such is life, and at times we have no choice of our own.  I can only hope that Francisca grows up well, in spite of the cruel actions of her mother, and learns to love her.

                Juan Carlos came with us to La Esperanza when we left, and I witnessed to him the entire way.  I had him read verse after verse about salvation, the blood, and eternal life.  Before we arrived in La Esperanza, he trusted the blood of Jesus Christ to save his soul from hell!  I was happy to see this.  I then stressed his need to show his father and uncle the same verses and show them their need to be saved as well.

                       

April 14th 2004 Wednesday                              Egyptology

 

                I spent all day studying.  I finally finished my college course on DVD about "Argumentation."  I wish I could say I learned something, but the truth is that most of the course was just a lot of "ten dollar words."  As all the courses I've watched, this one too cast doubt on "absolute truth" and made one's opinion the final authority rather than the "infallible" Bible.

                The rest of the day I was able to get many things done, while I started a new course on "The History of Ancient Egypt," also known as "Egyptology."  The teacher was one Bob Brier, and not only was he very interesting to listen to, but was also very knowledgeable.  I learned a lot as I watched fourteen lectures today (there are 48 in total).

                As he explained Isis, Horus, and Seb, I couldn't help but make the connection between Nimrod, Semiramis, and their son Tammuz.  As I studied Greek Mythology, that too was full of stories that could only have come from Babylon about Nimrod and his mother Semiramis. It's great to see how everything does nothing more than prove the Bible time and again!

                But the most interesting thing I learned today was the Egyptian Hieroglyphic Alphabet.  I also learned how to write my name in Hieroglyphs.  It is as follows:

                In the evening, only David and Hotir came for service.  It was very, very cold today and the wind blew fiercely all day long, making it even colder.  I can only imagine for this reason no one else came.  Thus, the three of us sang hymns, and then went home.

 

April 15th 2004 Thursday                                  Services

 

                Most of the day I spent studying "Egyptology."  It is just too awesome!  I learned all about the escapades of Napoleon, and the men he brought to Egypt to study the antiquities there, as well as the Pharaohs who ruled in Egypt up until the time of King Tut.

                In the afternoon, I journeyed out to Quebrada de Lajas for service.  At five I taught at the Hernandez house on the topic of "The Will of God."  It was great to hear some hearty "Amens!" from Santos.

                Afterwards, I journeyed to our little building, picking up children on the way.  There were ten children in all, as well as two adults, and two other children that came later.

                I preached on "Responsibilities to Christians from 1 Peter chapter three."  My points were:  1.  Vivir Santo (Live Holy), 2.  "Vestirse Simple" (Dress Simply), 3.  "Vencer Contra Satanas" (Win Against the Devil), 4. "Ver al Señor" (Look to the Lord).

                Afterwards, I went home and watched some more lectures about "The History of Ancient Egypt."

 

April 16th 2004 Friday                                       Baby Chicks Hatch!

 

                Today I woke to the wonderful surprise of having eleven young chicks in my chicken coop.  Castillo told me they hatched this morning, and I immediately went to see them.  They were all yellow, with varying colors on their backs, and they were simply precious to behold.  Unfortunately as the day progressed, one of them died, leaving me with just ten.  Castillo thought it odd that they were born before the 22 days.  But other people in my neighborhood have told me that they have seen them born on 20 days before as well.

                Today was very cold, with hard Northern winds.  I spent most of my time inside studying.  I also watched some more of the Egyptology classes, learning about Alexander the Great and the Ptolemy's.

                After lunchtime, Erick Sanchez came by to visit me.  We studied for sometime from the Bible about various things, and he asked me many a question.  He also told me that the "United Bible Societies" have printed up thousands of Bibles to give to the people in the villages along the border of El Salvador to the Southwest of us.  Of course they were "Catholic Bibles" with the "Apocrypha" (showing how liberal the United Bible Society is).

                In the evening, only David and Hotir showed up for service.  They said no one else came because of the cold.

 

April 17th 2004 Saturday                                   The Meeting With Mike Lane

 

                Yesterday Erick asked me to trade times with him in Bible Institute.  I usually teach from 8:30 to 9:30 in the morning, and he teaches from 11:30 to 12:30.  I agreed, and was thankful to have more time to spend relaxing this morning.  At nine, I left the house and traveled into town to by "Concentrado" (Mixed Concentrated Chicken Feed), "Maiz" (Corn), and "Arroz" (rice) for my chickens.  I also checked my email and ran a few errands.

                At the Bible Institute, I gave my students the information they needed to know for our test next week.  As I was writing on the board, Missionary Marbin came by with a bunch of "Gringos."  Several of them were Missionaries from Siguatepeque.  One of them was an American named Ronald VanderGriend, who worked for The Bible League, out of Chicago, Illinois.  They asked him to give his testimony, and I translated for him.  It was interesting learning about how he has traveled to over 40 countries in the world teaching and preaching.  And my students sat and listened in awe as he told them stories about the church in China and India.

                Another of the men with them was a "Garifuna" (a black man) from Tela (on the Northern Coast of Honduras) named Ambrosio Cordoba.  I enjoyed speaking with him, and he invited me to the Garifuna Bible Conference in July in Tela.  We exchanged phone numbers, and I told him I'd love to come.  I hope I can.  He also gave me a huge complement when he said, "A mi me parece que tu no tienes ningun problema de adaptarse (It seems to me that you don't have any problem in adapting)."  He meant when it comes to being a Missionary, and learning how to adapt with my surroundings, I seem to be able to blend in well. 

                Upon my return home, I spent some time playing with my new chicks, and feeding them.     When I finished, Mike Lane walked up in the yard.  I invited him in and we sat and talked for a while.  He asked about the possibility of working together, and I told him I'd consider it.  He also asked me to have dinner with him in the evening to discuss "doctrinal issues."

                At three the Cordoba clan came for visitation, so Mike went home, and Alex and Victor and I went "door knocking."  We visited until past five o'clock.  It was a lot of fun.  We also found Carlos and witnessed to his mother.  While I was speaking, Alex and Victor helped Carlos work on fixing the brakes on his bicycle.  "This," I thought to myself, "Is true Christianity!  (For not only are we telling them the truth, but we are willingly helping others)."

                At six, I walked up the road to Mike's house and we had a wonderful dinner of vegetables, chicken, and "Chinapopos" (an Indian bean).  Afterwards, we talked about "doctrine."  His main concern was what I believed about salvation in the Old and New Testament.  I explained what I believed, and backed it up with scripture.  Although he wasn't in complete agreement on how people were saved in the Old Testament and the Tribulation (I teach it's by faith and works), we were in agreement that it's by faith alone in the Church Age.

                Afterwards, we talked about Bible versions.  I told him that I would not, could not, and will not use the corrupt 1960 Spanish version.  He told me, "Well, I used it before in preaching as everyone else does."  I then quickly corrected him that not "everyone" does, as Pastor Jacobo changed from the 1960 to the 1909. 

                He then proceeded to tell me that while he was in the states, he went to some "Mission Conferences" and asked some Spanish speaking Missionaries which version of the Bible they used in Spanish.  They all replied, "The '60!"  When he asked them if they knew about the pure 1602 TR Spanish New Testament, they all replied, "That's a work of the devil! (even though they'd never seen it, nor read it.  They were only repeating what their "Phariseeical leaders" had told them)."  How sad this was to hear, as most "Fundamentalists" are so apostate, that they are militantly trying to defend their perverse, Catholic "1960" at the expense of calling the truth a lie.  The more I study the issue, the more I see that the "Fundamentalist Spanish" Pharisees are going against the pure text of the Textus Receptus and the King James, for the more perverse Catholic "Critical" texts of man.  There will be much to give account for in heaven, if they are saved, for standing for an "Ecumenical" Spanish Bible like the 1960 which is full of errors and lies (like making Jesus a sinner in need of a sacrifice in Luke 2:22, making Jesus in danger of Hell fire in Matthew 5:22, saying that Isaiah is quoted in Mark 1:2,3 when it's really Isaiah and Malachi, saying that "Elhanan" killed Goliath in 2 Sam. 21:8,9 when David really killed Goliath, by saying that a person will rise "with Christ" rather than the correct "by Christ" in 2 Cor. 4:14 (meaning Christ is still in the grave), by making a Christian wait for the 2nd Advent of Christ (Day of the Lord) instead of the rapture (day of Christ) in 2 Thess. 2:2, and more).

                While I was reading a book by Eugene Nida (the man behind the 1960 Spanish Bible project, and the man who said the divisive words, "As long as all people had the King James Version, they didn't think ...  It's terribly important to have different translations to get a good argument started."), called "Understanding Latin America, ABS, 1978, I was surprised to find that according to him, the three most important factors that motivated the United Bible Societies (those that are not printing and distributing Catholic Bibles with the Apocrypha) to produce the 1960 were as Nida says:

 

1.        The ecumenical movement's ever increasing popularity, lead by the Roman Catholic Church

2.        The Roman Catholic Church's leadership in resolving cultural and social differences.

3.        The renewal in biblical scholarship in transmitting mainly the message of the Bible, and the proclamation of the Good News among the Catholics.

 

I also was shocked to read the words of Dr. Jose Flores in his book, "La Historia de la Biblia en España," CLIE, 1978, in saying, "The ecumenical groups of Mr. Taize and Father Robert Giscard appeared in the Spanish Television in 1965 giving money to the Roman Catholic publisher Herder to print 1 million ecumenical New Testaments.  Simultaneously, several priests also purchased the recently published 1960 protestant Reina-Valera bible, admitting that it is better, and that they will use it to teach children during the catechism, due to the recent ambiance of Catholic aperture."

                Don't these "Fundamentalists" realize that they are using a bible endorsed by, influenced by, and printed by Catholic Ecumenicalism?  Not to mention, the texts from which it was based "Westcott and Hort" are Catholic texts (Vaticanus and Siniaticus).  Why do they then defend the Catholic Bible, and ridicule the right texts?   All I can say is, "God help us!  We are in a mess, and someone needs to wake up and begin preaching against the perverse 1960!

                What's interesting to me, is that I'm reading a book by David Cloud entitled, "For Love of the Bible," in which he defends the King James Bible.  His argument is that it's correct because it comes from the right texts (the Textus Receptus).   In his book, he has a chapter about the Revised Standard Version, and why it is not the pure words of God, and how it comes from the corrupt Roman Catholic "Critical Texts."  In that chapter, verse after verse is giving by "men of God" from days gone by who rejected the corrupt RSV and militantly preached against it because the work was done by "Modernists" and because it was based on the "Catholic" texts.  Men like Perry Rockwood, David Otis Fuller, Harold B. Sightler, James McGinley, E.L. Bynum, and more who are great "Fundamentalists" in the sight of others boldly sounded forth a voice of censure against the most vile and wicked "Revised Standard [Per]Version" of the scriptures. 

                But now, these same line of "Fundamentalists" that are supposedly against the RSV in English, are praising it in Spanish.  For clearly, the 1960 is nothing more than the RSV in Spanish according to the very statements of those that worked on the translation.  Take for example Mr. Jose Flores.  He says in his book, "El Texto del Nuevo Testament," published by CLIE in 1977, on page 232: "One principle added to the first list of the 1960 Reina-Valera Revision Committee was that wherever the Reina-Valera departed from the Textus Receptus to follow a better text, we should not return to the Receptus.  Point #12 of our Working Principles states that in cases of doubt as to the correct translation from the original, we shall consult preferentially the English Revised Version of 1885, the American Standard Version of 1901, the Revised Standard Version of 1946, and the International Critical Commentary."

                Why then are so many "Independent, Fundamental, Bible Believing, Baptists" nothing more than hypocrites who stand for the King James Bible in English, and are firm against the RV, RSV, ASV, etc., but when it comes to Spanish, they are willing to stand against the King James and the texts it came from, for the wicked RSV, and it's perverted text?  Are we not truly in apostasy?  Are not these heirlings, and hypocrites?  Are they not deceived?

                My concern about working with Mr. Lane was what version of the Bible he would use.  He told me that if we worked together, he'd preach from the 1909.  He also stated, "I'm not sure about the 1602 TR yet, and I will study it out more, but until then, I'm going to use the 1909).  I told him that would be okay, but that I would continue to use the 1602 TR. 

                Thus, we decided we'd try to work together.  When I need him to preach in my place, he'll do so.  And if he needs me to preach, I'll do so.  We also decided we'd keep the church in my garage for the time being, as he has to wait several more weeks to find out whether or not he must return to the U.S. for his wife.  If she can come here, and he need not return, then we'll move to the Baptist Camp, and try to work together in seeing the work prosper.

                       

April 18th 2004 Sunday                                      Preaching, and Helping Drunks

               

                After studying all morning, I left in the afternoon for Quebrada de Lajas.  On the road there I met Guilmer (of Ovilio's family) who flagged me down yelling, "Hey Gringo!  Help!

                He asked me for a ride, and if I could take young Alexis home.  When I asked him where he was, he pointed to a small mass lying in the road up ahead of me to the right.  Alexis was sap drunk!  I took him home and left him at Ovilio's house.  Both Guilmer and I had to grab him under the arm and pull him along up the dirt road to the bed.  Poor Alexis was so far gone, he couldn't think straight, nor walk.

                How sad it is to see young people destroying their life with alcohol.  But all I know to do is help them, and maybe when they sober up they will remember that someone loved them enough to take them home and put them in bed.

                At Ovilio's house, I found that neither Martir, nor Blanca were home.  But they had left Dilisia there gravely ill with a high fever.  I took her to the doctor, and we found out her temperature was 104.  They gave her an injection, and some medicine, and it ended up costing me 200 lempiras (about ten dollars). 

                At services at the Hernandez house, I taught about "Some Eternal Things."  While I was preaching, a young drunk saw us, and staggered in and sat down.  His name was Carlos, and he listened to the message, saying "Amen" once or twice. 

                In the evening at my house, we had a very good crowd, of all young people.  I taught on "Grapes or Giants: Which one do you see?" from Numbers chapter 13 and 14. God gave me some good points about "Discouragement" from Numbers chapter 13 and 14, and I showed them that discouragement comes from 1. "What one sees," 2. "What one hears," 3. "What one does (without God), and 4. "From one's heart's attitude."

                Afterwards, most of the kids wanted to play soccer.  Even though the sun went down, they played in the dark.  I sat on the sidelines with my little "girlfriends" (some of the young children which come to service), who flock to me and like to hang on me and hold my hand.

                When everyone went home, Mike Lane asked to stay for dinner to fellowship.  I consented, and over a wonderful dinner of Nachos, he told me about the talk he had with a young lady named "Maria" who's been coming to services lately.  She is a very nice, but unfortunately she's become pregnant out of wedlock.  Mike counseled her to put God first, and to continue coming to services.  Also he told her to pray that God will give her a good husband, (as the father of the child ran off, and is not to be found).

 

April 19th 2004 Monday                                     Off to Tegucigalpa

 

                Early this morning, before the sun awoke, I was driving through the mountainous roads headed for Tegucigalpa.  I arrived there around seven, and as is my custom, I went to Burger King for breakfast.  At eight I dropped my truck off at Otto's to have the transmission looked at, and then went back to the Cancer Center to rest.

                Most of the day I spent relaxing.  It was good to just rest for a change, with all the running around I have to do.  I also spent some time watching the television set.  The more I watched it, the more ashamed I became.  I'm starting to wonder how a "Christian" can own a T.V., for the more I saw, the more I desired to turn the thing off.  It glorified homosexuals, was full of dirty, filthy language and sexual innuendos, showed kids screaming at and even hitting their parents, and more.  I grew very sick and nauseated the more I saw, and I came to the conclusion that all television is for is to exalt wickedness, and ridicule righteousness.  I'm so glad I don't have a T.V. in my home, nor do I want one, as it vexes my spirit to sit in front of it and watch the depravity of this ever-sickening world.

 

April 20th 2004 Tuesday                                    The Loaner Truck

 

                Otto gave me a "loaner" car, as my truck is not finished yet.  It's an '83 Ford Truck with an extended cab, and extra long bed.  He desires to sell it to me, and he told me to drive it around and get used to it to see if I liked it, and wanted to purchase it for 2000 American dollars.

                I took it around town all day, and found that I've not forgotten how to drive a stick shift.  However, the only problem is that in Tegucigalpa, there are many hills, and on many occasions, I found myself stopped at a stoplight on an incline.  It's not easy to hit the gas, let off the clutch, and take your foot off the brake all at one time, especially on a hill.  At one very steep stoplight, I noticed that the man behind me pulled very close up to my tailgate.  I began to panic, and my heart began to beat quickly as I thought, "How am I going to get out of this one?  I'm going to try to take off, and the truck will stall, and then I'll roll backwards and hit the man behind me!  What can I do?"  But immediately the Bible verse ran through my mind:  "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me!"  And I put confidence in the Lord and prayed, asking him to help me.  When the light turned green, I smoothly took off and went up the hill without any problems.

 

April 21st 2004 Wednesday                               Still in Tegucigalpa

 

                I had some more errands to run today, such as mail some important documents, check my email, do some shopping, and more.  By the afternoon, I could tell I wouldn't make it home in time, so I called Bro. Mike Lane and asked him to take over services in the evening.  He said he would, and I went back to the Cancer Center to rest.  There I met another Missionary named "Bro. Henderson," and we talked for a while. 

 

April 22nd 2004 Thursday                 Driving Home to La Esperanza and Services

 

                My truck is still not done yet, so Otto suggested I take the old, black Ford home to La Esperanza.  This I did, and I arrived there at two in the afternoon.  After a short nap, I drove out to Quebrada de Lajas, and had a very late lunch with Jose Martir and Blanca.  Then I drove down the hill to the Hernandez house where I taught on "The Local Church."

                Afterwards, I picked up people for service.  How great it was to put them in the bed of the truck, and not have to worry about getting the carpet muddy.  How I wish I had a truck, for that would really be a blessing in the ministry.  I'm so tired of having my Suburban dirtied by constant use.

                At the six o'clock service, I taught on the subject of "Why?"  My points were 1.  "Why are we here?" (Answer: To Please God, according to Rev. 4:11), 2. "Why did Jesus Die?" (Answer: To Pay for our Sins), 3. "Why does God put up With Our Sins?" (Answer: To Give us Time to Repent), 4. "Why doesn't Jesus Come Back Right Now?" (Answer: To Give You Who Aren't Saved Time to Get Saved!).

                When I arrived home, I had to fix the window in the Black Ford.  It fell off its tract during the drive over the long, bumpy, dirt roads.  It was easy to fix, but it made me wonder if I indeed wanted to buy it.  What I really need is a vehicle that is built for off road excursions, but that also will hold a lot of people.

 

 

 

April 23rd 2004 Friday                                       TheTrip to San Pedro Sula

 

                I heard from Bro. Homero Romero Wednesday night, and he told me that Bro. Raul Reyes and William Park are now here in Honduras, and would like to see me.  So, I planned today to drive there and meet them.  I left my house at eight-thirty, and had planned to arrive at lunch time.  However, I ran out of gas in the black Ford, and I was left on the side of the road just outside of San Pedro Sula in the hot, tropical sun (FORD stands for "Found On Road Dead!").  God was good though, and sent me a nice lady in a white Toyota pickup, who took me to the gas station.  Unfortunately, I did not have a gas tank to carry with me.  When I asked around, the gas station attendants told me to walk up the street to a wood making shop to ask if they had anything.  They gave me a two-liter bottle and said, "Use that!"  When I took it back to the gas station, they told me, "I'm sorry.  We can't put gas in that, it's illegal."  I bid them tell me why, and they replied, "Because the spout of the pump won't fit in the mouth of the bottle."  I then pleaded with them to help me, and they said, "Maybe we can do something."  In typical Honduran style, they thought for a minute, and then cut a hole in the side of the bottle with a knife, and then filled it up there saying, "Now the spout fits!"  (I would have just used a funnel!).  Then I took a bus back to the car with gas spilling out the hole they cut on the side of the bottle.

                When I arrived at Bro. Homero's, it was a blessing to see Bro. Park and Bro. Reyes.  We saluted each other, and then Homero took us to German Amaya's house for a late lunch (it was past one o'clock by then), where we had good conversation, and a good meal.

                Service in the evening at Homero's church went well.  It is their second anniversary, and Bro. Reyes preached a wonderful message about "Don't Sell Your Children Out!"

                I then drove home in the evening, leaving at eleven at night, and not arriving home until two-thirty in the morning.     

 

April 24th 2004 Saturday                                   Visitors

 

                With only a few hours of sleep last night, I begrudgingly awoke and prepared for my Bible Institute class.  I gave them their exam over chapters four and five of 1 Thessalonians, and then I taught them from chapters one and two of 2 Thessalonians. 

                Upon my arrival home, I found Bro. Mike Lane and the Cordoba Clan working on drilling a well on Julio's property.  I watched them for a while to see how it's done. 

                The rest of the day I spent studying, resting, and washing clothes.  I also had quite a few visitors in the afternoon.  Because the boys were working on the well, we decided we wouldn't have visitation today.  However, a family from across the way came by and visited with me for a while.  They were very nice, and we talked about flowers.  They loved my "Snap Dragons," so I dug some up and gave them to them.  They in turn invited me to come to their house one day and dig up some of the flowers they have.

                At five-thirty, Tania Estefani and her brothers and sisters came by selling "Pork Nacatamales."  I bought two of them, but didn't like them at all.  They tasted horrible!  So, after they left (as not to offend them), I threw them out.

 

April 25th 2004 Sunday                                      Why Don't People Get Saved?

 

                I left for Quebrada de Lajas at one in the afternoon.  When I arrived, I found that Jose Martir wasn't home.  Some children told me, "He's at the soccer field watching them play."  So, I drove up to the wide, open-air stadium and found him.  Together we sat and watched "Llano de la Virgen" vs "Entirique." 

                At twenty till three, I had to go.  Jose Martir came with me, and together with is wife Blanca and child Dilsia, we journeyed down the dirt road to the Hernandez house for services.  I preached on "Why People Don't Get Saved."

                In the evening service at my house, we had a good group of over 14 people.  Tania Estefani came, and as usual became bored and began talking with others, and disturbing the service.  She would not sing hymns, and kept walking around the garage and moving her chair to another spot.  This lack of respect infuriated me, so I separated her and made her sit by herself.  Eventually she got bored and grabbed her little sister "Paola" and stormed out of the garage.  "¡Que le vaya bien!" I yelled as she walked out.  Everyone turned around and watched her go, and when she left I said, "We need to pray for that young lady, as she only comes to bother people, not to listen to the word of God."  Bro. Mike Lane added, "You need to pray she gets saved too!"

                I preached again the message the Lord gave me entitled "Why People Don't Get Saved" from 2 Timothy chapter three.  My points were:  1.  "Porque no Quieren" (Because they don't want to), 2. "Porque no Estan Quebrantados" (Because they are not broken, or repentant), 3. "Porque Estan Quejando" (Because they are complaining or murmuring about Christians), "Porque Quieren Quedar Sucios" (Because they want to remain in their wickedness).  God blessed the message, and at the end I had them turn to 2 Peter 2:22, and I showed them that in God's eyes, and unsaved person is like a dog returning to his own vomit, or a pig wallowing in the mire.  I closed with how the blood of Jesus Christ is the only thing that can cleanse and wash away their sins (1 John 1:7, Rev. 1:5).

 

April 26th 2004 Monday                                     Day One in Tegucigalpa

 

                At four this morning I left the house bound for the one million plus city of Tegucigalpa.  When I arrived, I went straight to the Cancer Center, where I met a man named Terry and his wife Pamela who were Missionaries in Guaimaca.  They invited me to have a cup of coffee with them, and I accepted.  We talked for some time about many different things.

                Later in the day, I called Mrs. Ruth Yamileth Avila and invited her to come to the Cancer Center to pick up some packages from her husband who is in Mexico.  Bro. Park gave them to me last week, and asked me to deliver them to the family.  The only stipulation was that I was supposed to witness to them as well.  This I did, and when Ruth and her husband's sister arrived, I sat them down and talked with them for some time, taking them through the scriptures.  I told them that Bro. Park led German Evely Escoto Inestroza (Ruth's husband) to the Lord in Mexico, and that he desired someone to talk to them about how to be saved as well.  This responsibility fell on me, as I was the only one who could contact them in person, and I spoke with them about how important it is to be saved by trusting the blood of Jesus Christ as their Saviour.  They said they were not saved, and when I finished, they decided they didn't want to get saved.  (I think they were only interested in the packages that German sent). 

                I finished by saying, "How sad!  German is now a born again child of God, and he has a mansion of pure gold in heaven to live in for all eternity.  His desire was that you'd be there with him!  But you choose not to be saved.  Now he'll be alone in his mansion of gold forever when he dies."  I could see that set them to thinking, but they still decided not to trust the Lord Jesus Christ as their Saviour.  Thus, I closed with John 3:36, telling them that when one does not trust Jesus Christ and his precious shed blood to wash away their sins, then they are rejecting him, and God's wrath abides on them still.   Afterwards, I had a word of prayer and then sent them on their way with the packages.  I even paid for their taxi to take them home.

                After lunch, I took the old, black Ford to Otto's shop.  They asked me what I thought of it, and I told them I liked it, but that I had problem after problem with it, such as... The gas tank leaks on the top around the seal when it's filled to the brim, the windshield wiper broke, the horn doesn't work, the seatbelt will not clasp, the window fell off it's tract twice (but I fixed it!), the master cylinder is leaking brake fluid, and the gas tank intake tube fell down inside the body, etc.  They weren't happy to hear this, but did not hold me responsible, as it is an old truck, and those things happen.  But they still wanted to sell it to me, saying, "We can fix all of those things quickly!"  I told them I appreciated the offer, but I declined because the thing was a "Gas Hog" and burned gas too quickly.  I've decided it's best just to have one vehicle to save on gas, upkeep, registration taxes, and repairs.

 

April 27th 2004 Tuesday                                    Day Two in Tegus

 

                Bro. Robert Baker told me he'd be coming into Tegucigalpa today in order to have some bodywork done to his truck.  Thus, I volunteered to drive up to the shop and pick him up, so he wouldn't have to wait all day long for his car to be fixed.  Together, we ran errands all day long, and had a wonderful time of fellowship.  He taught me many things that I didn't know, and joked with me that the reason I didn't know them was because when I was given the book, I was guilty of "eating the pages."  His exact words were, "If you'd quit eating the pages, you'd learn something!" 

                We also went to "La Armeria" (The Armory) to look at guns, and to buy some bullets.  While we were there, I suggested we rent a 9mm Berretta and enter into some friendly competition on the firing range.  This we did, and we each fired ten rounds at a target 20 meters away (about 63 feet).  I hit one bull's eye, had three within the black, and three more within the white circle.  Bro. Bob didn't fair so well.

                We also went to visit the Machine Shop of Mr. Orlando Paramo.  I've been visiting there just about every time I've come to Tegus for the last two months asking if they had any old electric motors that they could give away.  The Cordoba Boys asked me to find some for their Electrical Training in their Vo-Tech school.  They need them so that they can practice repairing old motors.  Mr. Paramo was a nice man, and gave me eight old electrical motors that were completely shot to give to them to the school.  I thanked him sincerely and left him a tract.

                In typical Honduran style, Bob's truck wasn't finished by two in the afternoon like they said (Nor was it ready at four or six).  So, he decided he'd stay at the Cancer Center in the evening.  Before we went back, we went to the mall and bought two Pizzas.  When we returned to the Cancer Center, we found Rich Fisher there with his wife.  He too had car problems, and had come to visit "Otto."  (If it weren't for all of us gringos, I'd think Otto would go out of business).

                In the evening before bed, I sat down and read a book that Mike Lane let me borrow by an apostate named Doug Kutilek entitled, "J. Frank Norris and His Heirs: The Bible Translation Controversy."  It had to be one of the weakest arguments I've read about why supposedly the KJV is not perfect, and that the position of "KJV Onlyism" is not right.  Not only was the premise completely ridiculous, but the entire book left the impression that anyone who was King James Only was not a "Fundamentalist." The author was also guilty of what I would call nothing short of "Man Worship" in making J. Frank Norris the final authority.  He used quotes by Norris, whom he said started "Fundamentalism" (where was it before Norris?) showing that Norris was not King James Only, but quoted other versions, and also corrected the King James with other Manuscripts and what he called "The "Greek" (which Greek? There are a bunch of Greek Texts!)

                Mr. Kutilek's conclusion was that a true "Fundamentalist" (better said, "Funny-mentalist") was one that was not King James Only, but rather one that used many different translations (conflicting authorities) believing that only the "original autographs" were inspired and that the KJV is not.  That is rather funny, as even though he is quick to point out that we have no "original autographs" today (they don't exist anymore), he also believes that no "copy" or "translation" of the original is inspired, only the original itself is inspired.  This makes a problem that he is too blind to see (can a Pharisee see?).  For in his conclusion he says, "In agreement with the BBFI doctrinal statement, we recognize that the Bible as originally written in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek is the verbally, inspired, infallible and authoritative Word of God, and this original scripture is the standard by which all doctrines, practices, and Bible translations are to be examined and evaluated." 

What???  How can the "originals" be the inspired, infallible, and authoritative word of God, and the standard by which all translations, practices, and doctrines are evaluated, if we don't have the originals to examine them with???   That's the epitome of APOSTASY!!!  Anyone who says you are supposed to believe that the only pure, unadulterated, inspired scripture on the face of the earth is the "original autographs," and then turns around and says from the other side of their mouth that they don't exist anymore, and that we don't have them, is saying that we don't have a Bible!  And they are guilty of saying that God inspired his words, but just wasn't smart enough to preserve them.  What a nut!!!  As my Pastor says, "Scholarship is off its Rocker!!!"  As Romans 1:22 says, "Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools!"

I feel very sorry for Mr. Kutilek, and his vast ignorance on the subject of why the King James Bible is God's word for the English Speaking People.  It's not only inspired (as all scripture is given by inspiration), but it's perfect (as it came from the right texts which were copies of copies of copies of the originals, which God preserved!), as opposed to the NIV, ASV, RSV, etc. that are full of errors and doctrinal attacks on the deity of Christ. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

April 28th 2004 Wednesday                              Seeing All the Missionaries

 

                Early this morning, I went out to Breakfast at "Piccadilly's Café" with Bro. Baker and Bro. Rich.  We had a wonderful breakfast of eggs, bread, potatoes, and more.  Afterwards, we went to the Mall, where we met Bro. Thomas Sweeney and his wife Rhonda. At the site of all of us Missionaries together, I remarked, "What is this?  A mini-Missions Conference?"

                Later, Bro. Baker and I went to Pricesmart, and we did some shopping.  Afterwards, I took him to the Air Conditioning Shop for his truck.  Before saying our goodbyes, we passed out some tracts to passerbys.

When I arrived home, I unloaded my groceries, and then showed the boys the electric motors that I've received from the man in Tegucigalpa.  They were ecstatic, and were really looking forward to working on them.

At service in the evening, I led the songleading, and Bro. Mike Lane preached.  His topic was that of "Love" and he showed verse after verse about how one should love Jesus Christ.  He preached from the 1602 TR, which I could hardly believe.  The Cordoba boys said he used it last week as well.  What a blessing!

 

April 29th 2004 Thursday                                  Riots, Revolt, and Rebellion

 

                I called Bro. Homero Romero this morning to see if Bro. Park and Bro. Raul Reyes made it off okay to El Salvador.  Homero told me that they were in Guatemala, and that they didn't go to El Salvador.  It's a good thing too, because he continued, "There was a revolt against the government, and many people were killed in the capitol city!"  Our plan was to go on Monday, but my car was in the shop.  So, Bro. Park and Reyes decided they'd go up to Donate's and see if there was someone there that could take them.  But they found no one.  Now, I see why God let my car have problems.  It was to keep us out of harm's way!

                Later in the day, I received a phone call from Bro. Baker's wife asking me to give Rich a message to call them.  I then walked the field behind my house to Rich's to convey the message.  There I was told that yesterday, Bro. Baker was assaulted by a multitude of school kids on strike, who threw rocks at his truck, breaking out the windows and leaving many dents.  When I called Bro. Baker, he gave me the rest of the story.  The students were protesting something, and were blocking the main highway.  Bro. Baker then got out of this car and asked them to move, and let him through.  In rebellion and anger, they jumped on his hood, and began yelling vulgarities.  And then they started to kick his truck and rock it.  He floored it, and went through the crowd as quickly as possible, but this only flustered the crowd, who began throwing more rocks.  The weirdest thing about the whole situation, according to Bro. Baker, was that they kept yelling "Jews."  (Anti-Semitic sentiment?)

                Bro. Baker's truck was trashed, and he'll have to do a lot of bodywork to get it up to par.  How sad that such a thing should happen.  But this is Honduras.

                At four, I left for Quebrada de Lajas.  I picked up several people on the way and gave them a ride.  One of them was the mother of Olga and Edwin, two of the young children that come to services.  They have a young brother (of five years of age) named Reuben, whom they bring to services as well.  As we drove along, the mother told me happily, "My son Reuben walks around the house singing hymns now!  I guess he learned them at your services.  And he keeps talking about Bro. Roberto Breaker!"  That was a blessing to hear.

                Before heading out to the Hernandez house for service, I stopped at Catalino's house and visited for a while.  Catalino wasn't home, but his mother and father were there with his brother Jesus.  We talked for a while.  Catalino's father had recently cut his finger off accidentally with a machete, and it looked a little infected.  I grabbed my trusty "First Aid Kit," and put on some Antibiotic Ointment and a new bandage.  I also left him some bandages to use, hoping he'd keep it clean.

                At the Hernandez house, I preached on "How We Should Treat Other Christians."  Then at the other place, I preached on "Alcohol: The Devil's Juice!"  My text was Ephesians 5:18.  My points were that the drug of Alcohol is:  1. "Dañoso Para su Salud" (Dangerous for your health), 2. Delito Contra las Escrituras" (Sin Against the Scriptures), "3. "Diabolíco Según el Señor (Diabolical According to the Lord), 4.  "Una Decepción Satánica" (A Satanic Deception).  I showed how alcohol is not only an addictive drug that destroys the mind and body, but is also a tool of Satan to get people to do things they otherwise wouldn't do.

                Before returning home, I stopped at a local "comedor" (eatery or restaurant) for dinner.  The owner there was a chubby woman, with two even chubbier children, of whom I've witnessed to before.  She remembered me, and made small talk.  Then she opened up to me by telling me that she was thinking about divorcing her husband.  I then took her through the scriptures showing her what Marriage is (from Ephesians chapter five), and why God does not want anyone to get a divorce.  I can only hope it helped.

 

April 30th 2004 Friday                                       Dead Chick, Corinthians, and Communism

 

                Most of the day I spent studying, and resting.  In the afternoon, I went outside to feed my chickens.  I was aghast at the horrible site of one of the little chicks that had been picked to death by the older chickens.

                In the evening, I was surprised to have over 15 people show up for Bible Study.  I taught from 1 Corinthians chapter two verse by verse. 

                Before bed, I watched some more of my college courses.  I'm currently studying "Ancient Greek Civilization," by professor Jeremy McInerney.  It was amazing to me to learn more about the Spartans and the Greeks.  To me it seems that the Spartans were the first "Communistic" nation.  Not only did they do everything together, and look down on "individualism," but they also shunned "freedom of ideas."  But Greece was the first "democracy."  They have always believed in "people rule," and have always been active in letting the people make decisions for the community. 

 

May 1st 2004 Saturday                                       Planting Seeds

 

                We finished the book of Second Thessalonians today in Bible Institute.   Next Sunday will be their final exam, and that will be the end of this semester.  Erick Sanchez wants me to teach again next semester on the subject of "Church History."

                In the afternoon, the boys came for visitation.  We visited several houses, and invited people to service.  We also distributed many tracts.  At the last house, a lady gave me a lot of flowers and seeds.  Some were called "Immortales" (Immortals) because the flower lasts for so long, and when it dries, it looks exactly the same as it did on the plant. 

                The boys came back to the house with me and helped me to plant the flowers.  We worked for several hours, and had a great time of planting.  I used the opportunity to tell them about how we are to plant "spiritual seeds" as well. 

 

May 2nd 2004 Sunday                                          The Works of God

 

                I journeyed up to Quebrada de Lajas in the afternoon.  I visited the Martinez family first, and found that Jose Martir wasn't home.  Blanca, however, wished to come to services at the Hernandez house, so I loaded her up with her daughter and Jose's sister's kids, and we drove down the hill to services.  I took some medicine to Argentina and Emilia, as they have been terribly sick with a horrible cough and fever.

                There, I preached on "The works of God."  My points were:  1.  "Creación" (Creation), 2.  Calvario (Calvary), 3. Convencer (To Convict),  4.  Condenar (To Condemn).  I showed how God made all things, but that original creation was tainted because of man's sin.  For this reason, God came to offer himself on the cross of Calvary as the work of redemption.  I then continued by showing that the Holy Spirit is still working today in convicting sinners of their sin.  I ended by showing them the final work of God, which would be to condemn to the Lake of Fire all who are not saved (Rev. 20:11-15).

                In the evening service at my house, I preached the same message.  We had a good crowd of people, but the children were very rowdy, making it hard for some people to listen.

 

May 3rd 2004 Monday                                         Giving Away Bibles

 

                Once again I had to go to Tegucigalpa.  This time I had to do my taxes.  As a Missionary out of the country, I don't have to file on April 15th, but am allowed to June 15th.  At nine o'clock, I called my tax agent, and we did my filing over the phone.   I didn't have to pay a dime, praise the Lord!

Afterwards, I ran some errands.  This included taking some Bibles and New Testaments to the "Value Center" store.  Every time I go there, I give the workers tracts, and witness to them.  The last time I was there, they asked me for some Bibles.   Thus, I was happy to give away eight New Testaments and two whole Bibles to them today.

I had some great news today when I visited AeroCasillas.  I spoke with Ingrid Lopez Sevilla who works there, whom I've also given a Bible, a New Testament, and many tracts.  She told me that she finally trusted the blood of Jesus Christ the other day to save her never dying soul.  What a blessing that was to hear!  All the seeds I planted finally came to fruition.

                In the evening, I made the Cancer Center my abode, and rested.

 

May 4th 2004 Tuesday                                        Shopping for Groceries and Guns

                                               

                I ran errands today in the early morning hours.  I also bought some groceries at the supermarket called "Pais."  Some of their stuff was more expensive than Pricesmart, but they seemed to have a better selection on some things.

                In the afternoon, I left for home.  Along the way, I stopped at each gun shop in every town called "La Armeria" to look at guns.  I have a .22, but would like something bigger.  As I looked at their selection, I fell in love with a Czechoslovakian made 9mm pistol called the CZ 75 B.  However, they wanted over 600 dollars for the thing (which is almost twice the price of what one would cost in the U.S.)  So I decided I wouldn't buy it.

                Over 15 people came for Bible Study in the evening.  I finished chapter two of 1 Corinthians, and taught them about the "7 Spirits in the Bible," "Judging Righteously," "Discernment," and more.

 

May 5th 2004 Wednesday                                   Julio, Alex, and Nebin

 

                Early this morning my neighbor Julio came over to look at the apparatus I have that pumps water into the house.  Now that he has a well, he's trying to decide on what would be the best way to set up his system of pumping water into his house.  We talked for a while, and our conversation covered "politics."  Eventually, it turned to "fornication" and "adultery."  Julio is living in sin, as he's not married to his "mujer" (woman).  He began years ago with another woman named Martha, and he had many children with her.  But because he wasn't married to her, he left and then met Naomi, and they've been together ever since.  (And from that relationship, he has ten children).

                Julio told me he feels bad about living in sin, and that he knows he's wrong, but that he's been very hurt by other Christians who look down on him, and talk bad about him.  I listened and told him I loved him, was praying for him, and am here for him to help him.  I also added, "So when do you want me to do the wedding?  I can marry people now!  So, why don't you let me do it?"  He didn't answer.  Even though he's unhappy in his sin, and knows he needs to do right, he seems undetermined in acting upon what he knows he should do.

                At two-thirty, Alex (Julio's son) came to the house and asked me to go and visit a young Christian boy named Nebin.  Alex has witnessed to him, and given him a 1909 Spanish Bible and a New Testament.  But, he wished me to speak to him as well.  This I did, and I explained to him why the 1960 is corrupt.  I also showed many verses from it that make Jesus a sinner, or pervert the Gospel.  He accepted the truth eagerly, and said he would only use the 1909 for the Old Testament and the 1602 TR for the New.

                In the evening service at my house, I taught on the subject of "The Church."  I showed how "The Body of Christ" consists of all born again believers throughout the centuries, and how this is a "spiritual organism."  I also showed why the term "universal" is not a good word to use, as that's what the Catholics say they are, but that the church was "universal" in the sense that it consists of all true believers.  I also spoke about the "Local Church" and showed it as an "organization."  I showed them the purpose of the Local Church is to 1. Evangelize Sinners, 2. Edify the Saints, and 3. Exalt the Saviour.  Then I gave them the following considerations in looking for a church to join.  They were 1. "Location," (it's good to have a church close to your house), 2. "Doctrine" (As their doctrine should be biblical), and 3. "Motive" (the church should not be founded to brag on themselves, and to exalt themselves, but rather to exalt the Lord and serve him from a pure heart).  I then stressed that the people are the church, and they should govern themselves under the leadership of the Holy Spirit.

                Mike Lane was in service and listened.  Afterwards, he said that in two weeks, he desires to move the work to the Baptist Camp again, and continue it there.  Our agreement was to "work together."  So, it will be interesting to see if he will try to take over the work completely, or if he will indeed follow through with his word, and work together.

 

May 6th 2004 Thursday                                      Quebrada de Lajas

 

                I mowed the yard yesterday.  This morning when I awoke, I found that the sun had burnt my skin and turned it a very pinkish-red color.  To touch the skin was to cause inexorable pain.  Thus, I was sore all day long, and it hurt to move.

                David came in the afternoon, and I sat him down to study the Bible with him.  He claims to be saved, and I'm the one who took him through the scriptures and won him to the Lord.  But he is lacking in his spiritual growth.  Sometimes he comes to services, and leaves early.  For the life of me, I can't figure out why.  Thus, I took him through some verses today showing that a Christian ought to live for Jesus Christ and made him read them.

                He wanted to go out to Quebrada de Lajas with me, so I took him there as well.  At the Hernandez house, I preached on "Giving."  I didn't preach, as most pastors, missionaries, evangelists, etc., on giving money as much as I did on giving your time, energy, love, attention, effort, etc. to Christ.  I did speak about money, but I was quick to point out, "God wants your heart, not your money!"  I told them God wants them to love him more than anything else, and if they do, then they'll give him an offering of a pure heart.  When I finished, Santos asked if we could collect an offering, so we did.  It was only 21 Lempiras.  But we decided we'd take an offering every week now, and then use it for the Lord.

                Santos, and some of his brothers and sisters, came with me to the other house we meet in up the hill.  This was a blessing, as I've been trying to get them to come there, so I only have to preach one time there in Quebrada de Lajas each time I go.  My subject matter was that of "What makes a person a Christian."  Although I'd preached it before, I felt it needed to be heard again.

                We had a good crowd in attendance, and Catalino came as well.  I was glad to see him sober, clean, and wearing his nice clothes.  I preached against drinking on several occasions, and he listened well.

 

May 7th 2004 Friday                                            What Are We?

 

                Today I spent some time resting.  This didn't last long as I had several visitors come to bother me.  First, Julio came over asking about what sort of electric pump he needed for his well.  He bought one, but it didn't have enough power to suck the water out of the pipe.  And he wished to know what size pump he needed.  I gave him Bro. Homero Romero's phone number, and told him to ask him, as he knows all about that kind of stuff.

                In the evening, only a few showed up for Bible Study.  I taught from 1 Corinthians Chapter three.  The Lord gave me a good illustration in explaining about the "work of the Lord."  Paul asked in verses five and six, "...Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every manI have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase."   I used this to show that we are nothing more than instruments in God's hands.  And the problem with the Corinthians were that they wanted to brag on the instruments, rather than the builder.  I explained when one builds a house, they need (among other things) a saw, a shovel, a hammer, a plumb line, a level, a trowel, a tape measure, etc.  Then I asked them, "Once the house is built, do we invite people over and show them all the tools we used to build the house, saying, 'Look at what these built?'  Or do we not rather store the tools away, and glory in showing others what we have built?"  I then made application to the work of the Lord.  We ministers are nothing special, and we are not to brag on what we do.  We need to see that the master builder has the plan, and we need to brag on what he's building. 

                I finished with verse seven which says, "So then neither he that planteth is anything, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase."  And I stressed to them that we are really "nothing" and God is "everything."  After class, several of my students went around joking with each other saying, "Yeah, you are NOTHING!"

                       

May 8th 2004 Saturday                                       Cereal, Classes End, and Collision

 

                I started my day with a bowl of cereal while I read my Bible.  Afterwards, I drove to the Bible Institute to give my final exam over the class of First and Second Thessalonians.  My students did well on their test, and I gave them their evaluation right there before I left.

                Afterwards, I drove back into town to buy gas and kerosene.  From there, I went to the Internet shop to check my email.  I also visited Blanca and Jose Martir in the afternoon, and ate a wonderful meal of Vegetable Soup with tortillas.

                At three o'clock, I took Victor with me to go on visitation, and I sent Alex with Bro. Mike Lane.  Maria also came with us, and we visited many different houses.  The first lady we encountered was not saved, and was a Catholic.  She believed that works are what saves a person.  So, I took her through some verses, such as Ephesians 2:8,9; Galatians 2:16; Romans 4:5, and more.  She listened, and could not believe that the Bible would say such a thing, as her church (Roman Catholic) teaches it's by works that one gains the grace and favor of God.

                When we visited another house up the street, we were invited inside, and made conversation.  While sitting and talking, we heard a horrible screeching noise outside.  We all ran out the door to see what it was, and we found a truck had sideswiped the barbwire fence in front of the house.  The driver, as well as several passengers, was drunk and rolled out of the car.  I went to help, and asked if I could move the truck, as I knew the conductor was in no condition to drive.  But, he pushed me away, and slurred, "I can do it myself."  We stood idly by and watched the man run into the fence on several more occasions, and then run into the front corner post of his house.  I gave him a tract and told him to be more careful next time, as he could have killed someone.  This almost incited a riot, as he became angry and offensive.  I thought he was going to hit me on several occasions, so I kept my guard up, tried to calm him down, and spoke to him about the Lord.

                By the end of the day, we had visited many houses and invited many people to services tomorrow for our "Mother's Day" services.  I can only hope we'll have a good crowd.

 

May 9th 2004 Sunday                                          Mother's Day

 

                Most of the morning I spent studying and finishing what I prepared for today.  After eleven o'clock I cleaned the house, and then dressed for services.  On the way to Quebrada de Lajas, I ran into Catalino, and gave him a ride home.  He invited me to his house, so I walked up the side of the mountain to see the new house he built there. 

                Afterwards, we picked up Jose Martir, Blanca, and others for services at the Hernandez house.  I preached on "Three Mothers."  They were 1. Eve, The Mother of All Living (Gen 3:20), 2.  Mary, The Mother of Jesus (Matthew 2:20,21), 3.  The Roman Religious System, The Mother of Harlots (Rev. 17:1-5).

                When service ended, we immediately drove down the road to pick up Jose Martir's mother, sister, and nieces.  My truck was full of people, when we left for my house.  Arriving home, I found the yard full of young people playing soccer, and mothers standing around talking.

                I started services at five thirty, and Hotir said he counted 94 in attendance.  There weren't enough chairs for everyone, so some of them sat on the grass outside the garage.   Before the message, I gave a small, plastic, red rose to each mother in attendance there were 22 total.  I preached on, "Porque Dios Nos Dio Una Madre" (Why God Gave us a Mother).  My points were, 1. Para Cuidarnos (To Take Care of Us),  2. Para Alimentarnos (To Feed Us), and 3. Para Enseñarnos (To Teach Us). 

                I showed how a good mother cares for her baby like Mary did in Luke 2:1-7, in wrapping him in swaddling clothes.  I continued by showing how a good mother gives her children something to eat, like the poor woman in 1 Kings 17:12.  Then I closed with the importance to teach children the scriptures, like Eunice did in 2 Tim. 1:5 and 2 Tim. 3:15.  My subpoints were that a mother should teach her children how to a. Love (Titus 2:3-4), b. Pray (Acts 12:12), c. Work (Titus 2:5 and 2 Thess. 3:7-10), and d. Obey (Eph. 6:1-3), for if they don't know how to obey, they won't ever get saved when Jesus deals with them to trust the blood of Jesus Christ, as they are accustomed to rebelling.

                Bro. Mike Lane was in service, and was surprised to see so many people come to the service.  After it was over, he told everyone that we will be moving to the Baptist Camp next Sunday to continue the work that "he had started."  I hope I have no problems with Bro. Mike.  The longer I know him, the more he seems to be in the crowd that seems to want to "brag" about what they are doing for the Lord (a Jehu, if you will).  I'm not interested in bragging on what I'm doing, I'm interested in what God is doing with me! 

My worst fear is that Bro. Mike will try to steal the work, and take it over himself, and then boot me out.  I hope this is not the case, nor is his motive, but we shall see. 

                       

May 10th 2004 Monday                                       The Trip to Malguara

 

                I left at eight-thirty this morning heading out to Quebrada de Lajas.  With Jose Martir, Catalino, and Reina (Baldomero's sister), we drove the hour and a half to the little village of "Malguara" to visit Baldomero Hernandez (Toribio's son).  When we arrived there, I turned to the left past the school, and pulled up into his yard.  He lived among several other houses, of which most of the owners were his uncles and aunts. 

                Baldomero greeted us, and we entered his front porch and sat down on little stools to talk.  High coffee plants, banana and peach trees, and guayaba bushes filled the back yard, making it look like an impassable jungle.  I felt as though I was far away from all civilization.

                We made small talk, and Baldomero introduced me to his grandfather and other family members.  While we sat, they brought us a fruit called a "granadia."  It looked like a grenade, and when I opened it, I found seeds surrounded by white pulp.  The fruit didn't look too appetizing, but it was very sweet and I savored every bit of it.

                After a while, we walked down to the river.  As we sat on the bank, I talked to Baldomero about the Lord.  He claims to be saved, but has been getting drunk on many occasions.  I took him through the scriptures showing him that it's the blood of Jesus Christ alone that saves, and nothing else.  Catalino was there as well, and I witnessed to him too.  Catalino also gets drunk often, but he does not claim to be saved.

                Neither one of them desired to hear what I had to say, but I continued quoting scripture, and telling them that I cared about them, and I wanted to see them do right.  And I wanted them to be saved, and go to heaven.  Catalino said he "just wasn't ready."   Baldomero kept saying that he was already saved, and I couldn't seem to persuade him otherwise.

                Afterwards, I drove Catalino and Jose home, and I went home to rest, feeling sick again. 

 

May 11th 2004 Tuesday                                      Politics!

 

                I finished my course about the history of Greek Civilization.  Now I'm studying Ancient Roman Civilization.  It is very interesting to me.  Unlike Greece, Rome was founded as a Republic.  But both of them were corrupt, and were lead only by the rich, ruling class.  Greece was a "Democracy," and was lead by people's rule.  I found it interesting that in Greece there were many homosexuals (as there are among American Democrats today), and in the Roman Republic, there were many senators who loved to wage war (as the American Republicans do still today).  Yes, politics has not changed much of the last three thousand years!

                David came by in the afternoon, and I gave him a haircut with my "Oster" set of clippers.   I'm learning how to cut hair now, so I can add "Barber" to my long list of occupations.

                In the evening, I had only a few students for Bible Study.  I showed them about "New Jerusalem" and "The Judgment Seat of Christ from 1 Corinthians chapter three.     

 

May 12th 2004 Wednesday                                Heaven and Hell

 

                Today I spent studying.  But, I was continually bothered by people coming to visit.  I was nice to them, and showed them no little kindness, but was thankful when they left, so that I could continue my studies. 

                In the evening service at my house, I taught on the subject of "Heaven and Hell."  We had a small crowd in attendance, but they seemed anxious to listen and learn more.  I took them through scripture after scripture about Hell, and what it is according to God's word.  Afterwards, I showed them verses showing the "three heavens."  And I stressed that the "third heaven" is where God the Father is.

 

May 13th 2004 Thursday                                    Que Pasa en Quebrada de Lajas

 

                Early this morning I made breakfast, and read my Bible.  Afterwards, I cleaned the house, and then left for Quebrada de Lajas.  I visited several houses there, and enjoyed witnessing to the families.  Many are very Catholic, but I'm finding they are opening up to me and talking with me more each time I visit them.  One family in particular invited me to look at their new litter of puppies that had just been born.  They were five adorable little fur balls!

                In the afternoon, Blanca fixed me a good meal of vegetable soup, with tortillas.  I savored every bit of it, as it was very good.  I also gave Jose Martir some socks and shirts, as he had no socks whatsoever, and has very few clothes.

                At the Hernandez house, I taught on the subject of "Money and Possessions."  This is one of the discipleship courses that we are studying, and I don't particularly like it.  I don't like talking about the subject of money.  But I used the course to show the difference between trusting in riches, and trusting in God.  I also stressed the need to "lay treasures up in heaven" rather than here in the earth.

                At six o'clock service, I had about 14 children to deal with.  But Eddie also came, and I was filled with joy to see him attend.  We sang hymns for quite some time, and then Esperanza and Plutarco with their family entered the building as well.  This made for quite a crowd, and there were barely enough seats for everyone.  I taught on the subject once more of "Heaven and Hell." Everyone listened intently, and I stressed the need to be saved by trusting the precious blood of Jesus Christ.  I also told them, "Jesus built a bridge to heaven with only three nails and two pieces of wood!"

                After the message, Plutarco was so impressed, that he asked me for a copy of the message.  I decided I'd do better than that, and I gave him my notes.  He was very thankful.

                Upon my arrival home, I spent the night listening to good Christian hymns.  Bro. Hunter, a Missionary to the Philippines, gave me a CD years ago of him singing "Beulah Land," "There is a God," "It Still Takes the Blood," and other hymns.  I sang along with all my heart, and began shouting and praising God through the early evening hours.  Afterwards, I dropped to my knees on the hard, tile Kitchen floor and prayed for some time.  

 

May 14th 2004 Friday                                         Out Like Flynn!

 

                My voice is almost gone from preaching yesterday, being sick, and shouting and praising God all last night.  So, I rested most of the day today.  As usual, many people came by to visit me, and I greeted each one in turn.  Most of them came asking for some "Moras" (Blackberries) from my gigantic Arapaho Blackberry bush.  I obliged, and let them pick as many as they wanted.

                Between visits, I continued studying my course of "The History of Ancient Rome."  I learned much that I didn't know about Julius Caesar, as well as his adopted son Octavian, also known as Caesar Augustus.

                At six, Mike Lane came over for dinner.  We ate a wonderful meal of "Chicken Tostadas" while we fellowshipped.  Before he left, I asked him about how we will go about working together, and when I will be preaching.  He responded, "Well, you have already Tuesdays and Fridays to teach the people here at your house, so I thought I'd take Sundays and Wednesdays and preach to them there at the Baptist Camp."  He continued, "I don't have any other thing to do, and I want to continue on in the work I've started."  This hit like a ton of bricks!  So, I'm now O-U-T!  And now we are back to how we were before he left for the states.  So much for "working together."

                I guess it's okay though.  God's in charge, and he's still on the throne.  At least I'll be able to teach the people the truth each Tuesday and Friday night when they come to my house for service. 

                He also said that if he's out of town, I could fill his place and preach for him, and vice versa.  So, it's good to have someone who can preach for me in Quebrada de Lajas if I must be elsewhere.

 

May 15th 2004 Saturday                                     Taking Back the Things to The Baptist Camp             

 

                Upon rising this morning, I immediately began my devotions with prayer and Bible reading.  Shortly thereafter, Carlos and Eleazer came by asking if I could give them a haircut.  I gladly obliged, and spent close to an hour cutting their course, thick, black, Indian hair.

                In the afternoon, I finished studying about the History of Rome.  I've come to the conclusion that it's been the bloodiest history of all histories in what I call the "Three main areas of Roman Rule."  Not only was the Republic form of government in Rome full of murders, killings, riots, mischievous murder plots, and more.  But the Emperors were bloody killers as well.  Not to mention the rule of "Papal leadership," which is nothing short of the history of martyrdom and religious sanctioned murder.  Yes, truly Rome has the blood of all humanity on its hands.

                The Cordoba boys came today for Visitation afterwards, and together we took Mr. Mike Lane's songbooks, radio, CD's of hymns, and other paraphernalia to the Baptist Camp.  I also left a big box of 1602 TR New Testaments there as well, hoping that they'll use them.

 

 

May 16th 2004 Sunday                                        Sunday Night at the Bijou?

 

                At the Hernandez house, I preached a message entitled, "Some Things You'll Do If You Love God."  My points were 1.  You'll Keep His Commandments (John 14:15), 2. You'll Keep His Words (John 14:23), 3.  You'll Love One Another (John 15:12,17).   I was careful to stress the importance of "memorizing scripture."  The Hernandez family was quick to pick up on the need to "keep God's words," and when I left, they had their Bibles in hand, and were looking up verses to memorize.

                In services at the Baptist Camp, Mr. Mike Lane decided to "show a movie."  That's strange, as before he was telling me, "I just want to preach!"  The flick was supposedly a "Christian film."  It was developed and distributed by the "Billy Graham crowd," but had unsaved Hollywood actors in it.  Rather than stay to be "entertained," I went home and studied.  I listened to several Phil Kidd tapes (as preaching is much more important than watching movies!), and then finished my College Course on "The History of Ancient Rome."  Afterwards, I began studying "A History of England from the Tudors to the Stuarts" which proves to be quite interesting.

 

May 17th 2004 Monday                                       Vacation?

 

                Since I have less to do now, as the other Missionary has taken the work, and would rather show movies than preach (I'm still mad about it), I decided I'd take a few days off to rest and relax (sort of a mini-vacation).   So, early this morning I drove to Tegucigalpa.

I found that a vacation was not exactly what I was able to enjoy, as most of the day was spent running errands.  Not only did I have to go to the Airport Post Office for my mail, but then I journeyed to AeroCasillas to pick up some packages.  Afterwards, I had to go to the Bank, the Office Supply Store, the Internet Shop, and more.   I also went to "La Armeria" where I decided I would indeed buy a pistol.  This I did, and spent some time on the firing range trying it out.  It is a wonderful gun (the CZ 75 B), which holds 16 in the magazine, and is very, very accurate.  I was indeed happy with my purchase.  (This is the same gun the policemen use here.)

 

 

                Back at the Cancer Center, I met a Mr. Jack Henderson, who was a Missionary here in Honduras for many years.  He has since retired, but comes back each year for a few months.  We talked all night, and I enjoyed learning from his years of wisdom here on the Mission field.  He too had many guns when he lived here, and told me how he brought them with him from the states to Honduras on an airplane back in the 1970's.  My how times have changed!  For this would not be permitted nowadays.

 

 May 18th 2004 Tuesday                                     Day Two of my Mini-Vacation?

 

                Most of the morning I spent in study.  It was nice to be in a quiet, new environment where I could study, and not worry about anyone coming to visit me, and break my concentration.   

                At ten, I left for the tourist town of "Valle de Angeles" (Valley of the Angels), about 30 miles outside of Tegucigalpa.  There they make many beautiful objects of ceramic, wood (specifically Mahogany), metal, and other objects.  More than anything else, I desired to find some nice, handcrafted, wooden, Curtain Rod holders, for the guest room in my house.  Eventually, after looking in many of the Arts and Crafts Stores, I found what I needed.  I also had a great time passing out tracts as well, and witnessing to several people.

                On the way back to Tegucigalpa, I stopped in the little town of "Santa Lucia."  It too was a tourist site, but not as well known as Valle de Angeles.  I was surprised to find a beautiful, picturesque, mountain community which over looked the Capitol City of Tegucigalpa.  The people were very nice, and the town itself had old, cobblestone streets, adding to the overall genre of the Colonial environment.  There too I passed out tracts, and wandered around in awe of the beautiful buildings with tall walls and adobe tile roofs.

                Upon my arrival to the Cancer Center, I enjoyed a nice nap, before going into town to run some more errands, such as getting a haircut, buying oil and a filter for my truck, and more.

 

May 19th 2004 Wednesday                                The Bakers and Anita Hurst

 

                Bro. Robert Baker told me that he'd be coming into Tegucigalpa today with his wife.  So, I decided I'd stay and spend the day with him.  This turned into me being his own "personal chauffeur," as I had to drive him around town all day running errands.  His truck is in the shop being repaired, and he asked me to take him several places.  As we drove, Bro. Baker told me that he fears there could be much political upheaval here in Honduras soon.  Not only are the Teachers, Lumberjacks, Taxi Drivers, and Transportation Entities on strike, but the general feeling among the population here is that President Ricardo Maduro is not giving anyone a "just deal."  Not only has he raised gas prices to almost four dollars a gallon, but he's doing his best to increase taxes, slow down the economy, and raise occupational fees.  The people as a whole are not too keen on his leadership, and are planning "something" next week.  There have already been many "public protests" and from what I and Bro. Baker have been hearing, next week things might come to a head.

                Thus, today we spent some time stocking up on things we need, and preparing for the coming onslaught.  It might not amount to anything, but it's better to be "safe" than "sorry."

                As we left the Mall in the afternoon, I had the unfortunate disaster of being hit by another automobile, as I backed out of the Parking Lot.  I took the blame, and claimed to be at fault, but the man who hit me claimed he was a fault, as he was going way too fast (almost at full speed) through the Parking Lot.  Fortunately, the damage to the body of my truck was very small, and left a small dent about the size of a credit card.  However, the back right tail light was completely demolished, and will have to be replaced.  I offered to pay for the damage to the other man's van, which too was only a very small dent, but he would have none of that.  Thus, we decided to let "bygones be bygones," and we parted ways without exchanging information of any kind.  (Only in Honduras!)

                Anita Hurst came back today as well from the states, and upon our arrival back to the Cancer Center in the late afternoon, we found her in good health, happy, and as jovial as ever.  I invited them all to dinner, and we had a wonderful time of Fellowship at "TGIF's."

 

May 20th 2004 Thursday                                    Back Home to Tegucigalpa

 

                After breakfast with the Bakers, I left the Cancer Center bound for Pricesmart and the Mall to buy some supplies for the next couple of weeks.  I also had to mail some important documents, as well as a few 1602 TR's to people that emailed me asking for them.  I've been getting a lot of requests for them lately from people who are truly seeking for the pure words of God in Spanish.  One lady emailed me almost hysterical after reading my Internet site saying, "How can I give my Spanish friend a Bible that calls Jesus Christ Lucifer?  I just can't do that!  Please let me know where I can get a pure Spanish Bible that I can give away to my friend!" 

                It wasn't until late in the afternoon that I was able to leave Tegucigalpa, and even then I had to buy gas (which was a whopping 57 lempiras a gallon).  Upon my arrival home, I had to unload, and then prepare for preaching service in Quebrada de Lajas.  But, as I was unloading, sickness fell upon me, and I had to frequent the bathroom on more than a few occasions.

                Immediately, storm clouds arose in the South, and it began to rain quite heavily.  Between the rain and the "continual dropping," I decided reluctantly that it would be best to stay home.

 

May 21st 2004 Friday                                          Visitors

 

                Most of the day today I spent resting, trying to recuperate from my "Vacation."  I really didn't have much time to rest in Tegucigalpa, and I returned home feeling worse than when I left.  But at least today I was able to relax a little.  That is of course until Erick Sanchez pulled up in the yard on his motorcycle.  We had lunch together and then he helped me hang my new curtains in the guest room.  My Mother is coming soon to visit, and I want the guest room to look nice for her.

                Erick and I also had some "Target Practice" with my new 9mm pistol.  That was a lot of fun.  Before going home, Erick reminded me that tomorrow the Bible Institute starts again, and I'm to teach on the subject of "Church History."  I had completely forgotten, so I spent the rest of the day studying.

                Later in the afternoon, I had a visit from one Mr. Evelio Ramos, a local news reporter and camera man from Lenca Television, channel 11.  I met him one Saturday on Visitation at his house here in the neighborhood, and since then we've become friends.  His visit was strictly a "professional" one and he brought me a paper to translate into English.  It was about "Problems with Potatoes" and was addressed to a firm in the Netherlands that shipped several different varieties of Potatoes here to Honduras for planting, so that they could determine which variety faired the best.  Evelio asked me to then read the translated paper into English tomorrow, while he recorded my voice and then dubbed it to an informative video of the Potato fields to send to the firm in the Netherlands.  I agreed, and look forward to doing so.

                In our Bible Study in the evening, we looked at 1 Corinthians chapter four.  I taught them verse by verse from the first seven verses, about "The Seven Mysteries in the Bible," "Judging Righteously," "One's Heart Attitude," and more.  I had about ten students in all.

 

May 22nd 2004 Saturday                                    Bible Institute Starts Anew

 

                At eight thirty, I began my first course on "Church History" at the Lenca Bible Institute.  Attendance has seemed to dwindle there, and I was surprised to find that I only had a total of six students.  All of them were those from last semester, aside from one new student named Augustine Diaz.

                I started my first course by teaching them "What the Church is," "Where the Church Started," and "What Time Period the Church Covers."  I also showed the difference between the Local Church as an "organization," and the Body of Christ or the "Church" made up of all saved people as a "Spiritual Organism."

                At ten o'clock, I journeyed up to the Lenca Television office, and taped the reading of the script that I was given.  I spent about an hour last night translating it, and did the best I could in reading it in English.  My voice was very deep, as I still have a cold, but they were happy with how it turned out.  I also met the owner of the station named Mr. Aguila. 

                Afterwards, we talked for some time, and he told me that he was a "Charismatic Catholic," and that his sect was started many years ago by Mr. Rockefeller.  This was interesting to hear.  He claimed he neither spoke in tongues, nor went to the mass, but that he was indeed Charismatic, and Catholic.  We talked about doctrine for some time, and I told him why I was neither.

                Before leaving, he asked me for my fee of reading the script.  I told him, "I don't want anything!  I'm not interested in money!  I'm just glad I was able to help you!"  He seemed very respectful, but wouldn't take no for an answer, so I replied, "I'll be happy with just a soft drink."  And he then bought me a coke.

                At two, some of my little "girlfriends" (about seven to ten years of age) from services here in my house came over asking for some Blackberries.  I walked out with them, and we ate as many as we could find.  They are down to the gleanings now, as harvest has passed, and are fewer and harder to find, but are still nice and sweet.

                Thirty minutes later, my boys came for visitation, and we drove up to the end of the road, and then began visiting houses one by one, and inviting people to services at the Baptist Camp.  We also passed out the booklet tract "¿Cómo Puedo Yo Tener Vida Eterna?" at each house.

                Eleazer came as well, and I let him pass out tracts to everyone walking by.  I've preached and taught a lot lately on the importance of doing something for the Lord Jesus, and laying up treasures in heaven.  Each time Eleazer would pass out a tract he'd smile and say, "How about that?  I've got another reward in Glory!!!" 

                I asked the boys if Mr. Lane used the 1602 TR in preaching on Wednesday, and they said he did.  This was a blessing.  Maybe there is hope!  I plan to attend services there each Sunday and Wednesday and see how things are going.

 

May 23rd 2004 Sunday                                       Quebrada de Lajas and Patirique

 

                I journeyed out to Quebrada de Lajas in the afternoon.  There I visited Ovilio's house and had a cup of coffee.  While there, Ovilio showed me a .25 pistol that he owned.  He said he was trying to sell it, as he needs money to finish building his house.  The firearm was very small, and had only a four-inch barrel.  The whole thing fit in the palm of my hand!  I felt sorry for Ovilio, and I liked the small pistol, so I bought it from him, hoping it would help him finish his house.  (It is a CZ 92 Browning).

                At the Hernandez House, I preached on "What Will You Do With Jesus?"  I met Catalino's father walking down the road on the way there, and I invited him to come.  He did, and I had a great time preaching to him as well.  My points were, 1.  Judas Sold Jesus Out, 2.  Peter Denied Him, 3.  John Loved Him, and 4. Paul Accepted Him as Saviour.  Then I asked them, "Which one are you?"

                Upon my arrival home, I parked the car, and then walked to the Baptist Camp for services.  Mr. Lane preached on "Christian Growth."  Afterwards, he took everyone home.  I sat in the back of his truck with all the kids, and together we sang "Up From the Grave He Arose."  However, we changed the words to the chorus to "Alleluia Pícaro!"        

In the evening, I ate dinner at Mike's house, and we had a good time of fellowship.

 

May 24th 2004 Monday                                       Bullets, Bats, and a New Building

 

                This morning I awoke feeling much better.  After taking a lot of vitamins, I had more energy than I knew what to do with.  So, I spent some time outside working in the garden.  Castillo pulled out many radishes, and together we ate them.  I fixed them in a salad, which was very good.

                In the afternoon, Julio came over to visit, and I showed him my new firearm.  He liked it, and told me where I could buy bullets for it.  Thus, I journeyed into town to buy bullets, and to speak to a Mr. Jose Avila, who owns a home in Quebrada de Lajas.  On Sunday, I met him there, and asked him if he would be interested in renting his house for us to use for services, as the building we are using now is very, very old, and is falling apart.  Not to mention the fact that there are bats in the place, and on more than one occasion, I've seen a bat fly in front of my face while preaching.  Mr. Avila agreed to rent the house for 200 lempiras a month, and this Sunday he said we could move in.

                When I arrived home, I immediately went to Julio's house and invited him over to help me try my new pistol.  We had a friendly competition, and I was the victor.  However, it was very loud!  Some of the neighborhood kids came over when they heard the noise, and I entertained them.

 

May 25th 2004 Tuesday                                      Cleaning House

 

                I cleaned house all day long.  This is something that I'm learning to hate!  Not only is it not fun, but it takes most of the day to complete. 

                In the afternoon, I sat down with my little pistol and took it apart to see what makes it work.  After several hours of trying, I still couldn't figure out how to take it apart.  Thus, I almost decided to give up, when it hit me, "You have to turn the barrel, and then it will come out!" 

                After completely stripping it, I found that it was missing some pieces.  Two springs, and a small metal plate were lacking.  Thus, I spent the rest of the afternoon trying to make them.  However, this proved to be a complete disaster.

                Ten students came for services in the evening, and we finished studying chapter four of 1 Corinthians. 

Before bed, I finished my DVD college course class on "The History of England from the Tudors to the Stuarts."  The History of England was an interesting one, and it seems to me, that all England has ever been interested in was "Power."  From the Viking raiders to the Parliament that wanted to keep the King in check, England has always been busy as a nation struggling amongst itself for political power.

 

May 26th 2004 Wednesday                                No Power

 

                The electricity went out today, and that brought me to a standstill.  Thus, I spent the day reading books.  In the afternoon, Julio came over to visit, and I told him about my gun.  He then replied, "There is a man that fixes guns downtown, I can take you to him!"  I readily agreed, and together we drove into town to find him.

                The man was named Carlos Garcia and he had a little shop full of workbenches, on which were many tools.  He also had many different guns in plastic containers, each one in pieces.  When I showed him my weapon, he immediately disassembled it, and found the problem.  He said he could fix it easily, by machining the parts.

                I also asked him to "blue" the metal, and he said it could.  All total it will cost me 1700 lempiras (probably more than the gun is worth!)

                In the afternoon, Alex brought back the Bibles I gave him to stamp with my name and address.  Every Bible I buy to give away, I put my seal in, as well as a list of verses on "Salvation."  Last week I bought 50 Bibles, and when the Cordoba's saw them, they volunteered to help me by gluing the verses list into the back, as well as stamping them with my seal.  I look forward to getting them out.

                At six, I walked back to the Baptist Camp for services.  Mr. Lane asked me to lead song leading, and I gladly did so.

 

May 27th 2004 Thursday                                    Adam and Christ

 

                I studied early this morning after breakfast.  In the afternoon, David came to the house to go to Quebrada de Lajas with me.  Together we visited different people.  At Martir's house, we helped him cut firewood, and were rewarded with a nice lunch cooked by Blanca.

                In the evening, I taught on the subject of "How Adam is a Type of Christ."  I showed that both of them were created by God (Gen. 2:7, Matt. 1:18,20), that both of them were created in God's image (Gen. 1:26, 27, 2 Cor. 4:4), that both of them were called the son of God (Luke 3:38,Luke 1:35), that both of them had to face sin in a garden (Gen. 3:6-8, John 18:1 and Luke 22:41-43), that both of them had a wound in their side (Gen. 2:20-23, John 19:34), and that both of them died for their bride (Eph. 5, Gen. 3:6).

               

May 28th 2004 Friday                                         Studying English, Teaching in Spanish        

 

                I felt awful again this morning, but I tried to make the most of the day in spite.  Most of the day I spent studying, and watching my new college course on the subject of "The History of the English Language."  The Professor is one Seth Lerer, and he does a good job of showing the etymology of many English words.

                In the evening, my students arrived late, because of the nightly rain.  I taught them from chapter five of 1 Corinthians, and stressed to them the need of living pure, holy, and just in their Christian lives, and fleeing from fornication.

 

May 29th 2004 Saturday                                     Testigos de Jehovah?

 

                Bro. Mike Lane came to the house at two-thirty today for visitation.  My three faithful visitation partners, Alex, Lindsey, and Victor came as well.  After a word of prayer, Bro. Mike took Alex with him to visit in San Carlos, and I took Lindsey and Victor to visit in El Tejar. 

                As luck would have it, we happed upon an almost all "Testigo de Jehovah" (Jehovah's Witnesses) community, with three or four houses in a row of J.W.'s.  Of course this sparked a debate, and we spoke in length to them about why Jesus Christ was God, and how he (God) shed his blood for them (Acts 20:28). 

                Of course they argued back saying that Jesus was only the "son of God" and not God himself, in spite of the clear passage in 1 Tim. 3:16.  (They even laughed when I said that Jesus was God!)   Also, they continued by saying that he wasn't part of "the trinity" (which they deny).  I then showed them 1 Thessalonians 5:23 that all people are a trinity, as they are made up of a body, a soul, and a spirit.  To the which the head honcho replied, "I'm a soul, but not a spirit or a body."  I then replied, "So you have no body? You're a liar!  I'm looking at your body right now!"  Then they said, "I mean, I'm only one, and I'm only a body, and no more!"  Of which I showed them clearly, in the scriptures, that they are in error.

                They couldn't handle this obvious truth, and then cut us off and decided it was time for them to go and visit others and try to make "converts" to their false religion.  As they journeyed from house to house, we went in front of them and warned the people of their false religious teachings, and gave them a short Bible Study on why the Testigos de Jehovah (better said "Testigos de Satanas") are a false sect which deny the Trinity, the Deity of Christ, and the doctrines of heaven and hell.

                In the last house we visited, we met a man who claimed to be saved, but wasn't attending church like he should (At times he attends Bro. Ramon Galeano's services).  He said he had Catholic relatives who were not saved, but they kept telling him, "Your not right with God, because you have rejected the one true religion (Catholicism)."  I took him through the scriptures, and showed him why Catholicism isn't Biblical, and how they twist the scriptures (as do the J.W.'s) to teach falsehoods, lies, and half-truths.

                At seven in the evening, some of the young people from church came to my house to bother me.  We sat on the back porch and talked and sang hymns.  I also taught them some "Karate."

 

May 30th 2004 Sunday                                        Sunday Services 

 

                Before going to the Hernandez house for services in Quebrada de Lajas, I stopped in the market and bought some beans, rice, tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, eggs, and more.  When I arrived for services, I gave them to the Hernandez family, which is struggling financially.  They were very thankful. 

                Jose Martir showed up for services right before we began, and I asked him to open us in prayer.  My message was on the "Deity of Christ," and I took them through many verses showing that Jesus Christ was "God Manifest in the Flesh" (1 Tim. 3:16), such as I John 5:20, Acts 20:28, and more.  Our memory verse was John 20:28.

                Afterwards, I drove to the building that I desire to rent to meet the man who said he would rent it to me.  However, he was not there, as he said he would be.  So, I'll call him tomorrow.

                Upon my arrival back home, I immediately parked my car, and then walked back to the Baptist Camp.  Bro. Mike Lane asked me to lead song leading again, and I cheerfully did so.  He also told me he'd be gone on the 9th and the 13th, and asked me to preach for him on those dates, which I willingly agreed to do.

                Bro. Mike preached on the subject of "Loving Others" and showed many verses with the words "los unos a los otros" (one to another).               

                After taking everyone home in his truck, we had dinner together at his house, and had a great time of fellowship.   The more I get to know him, the more I like him.  

 

May 31st 2004 Monday                                       Cowboys or Missionaries?

 

                The sounds of birds singing and the bright, warm rays of the sun awoke me in a tranquil state of being this morning.  After my customary breakfast of eggs, toast, refried beans, cheese, yogurt, and bacon, I spent some time reading my Bible.  I finished the entire book of Joshua. 

                Later with Castillo, we harvested the Radishes from my garden.  There were more than I could eat, so I gave some away to my neighbors.  They were very thankful.

                In the afternoon, I drove into town to pay the rent, check my email, and pick up my pistol.  The man fixed the springs that were broken, but did an awful job of "blueing" it.  There were many different colors, and some parts were more "blue" than others.  But this is Honduras, and knowing that was probably the best he could do, I let it slide.

                On the way home, I spied Mike Lane near the park and stopped to talk with him.  He too is interested in obtaining a pistol, and was speaking with my old friend Hernan about the possibility of buying one from him.  I invited Bro. Mike over to the house for some "target practice," and he agreed.  Together we shot my 9mm CZ 75 B, my little .22 Beretta, and my "good as new" .25 CZ 92.  Mike also brought a six-shot .22 revolver, which another man let him borrow.  The Company name stamped on the side was "RUBY."  It was a nice little revolver, but shot very high.

 

               

Text Box: My little CZ 92 Czechoslovakian made .25 semi-auto pistol.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

June 1st 2004  Tuesday                      English, Study, and Rain

 

                I couldn't sleep at all last night.  Thus, I constantly awoke and got out of bed to find something to occupy my time.  While in a half-dazed state, I wrote a cute little poem about English, which I mused upon as I thought about my mother tongue, and my classes on the History of it.  It's rather silly, but it goes like this:

 

ENGLISH SENSES?

 

By Robert Breaker III

 

If I hear with my ear,

 

Do I seye with my eye?

 

Do I smose with my nose?

 

Do I tastongue with my tongue?

 

Do I fand with my hand?

 

How strange is Englanguage!

 

                Most of the day I spent working outside.  I changed the oil in my truck, as well as a few other things.  I also burned the garbage and washed some clothes.  In the afternoon, a terrible storm clouded up on the horizon and beat down upon our little berg of San Carlos.  Never have I heard thunder so loud nor rain fall so hard.  It lasted only an hour, and then all was peace and calm once more.

                In our Bible Study, we began chapter six of 1 Corinthians.  I taught on the importance of not going to the secular world system to absolve a problem (as those "carnal" Christians of Corinthians did), but rather one should take it to God, and the church.

 

June 2nd 2004 Wednesday                 Sickness, Rain, and Fire

 

                The last couple of days I've been unable to get out of bed early, as each morning I awake feeling awful with cold chills, shaking, sweating, and a genuine lack of energy.  It seems the more I try to get warm, the less I can do so.  (Bro. Bob Baker thinks I have Malaria, and suggested I go for a blood test.  This I will try to do).  To add to my misery, today I had several bouts with stomach pains and vomiting.

                Thus, I spent most of the day indoors.  This was not only for health reasons, but also because a huge storm blew in and bedabbled the ground with a prodigious amount of water.  Huge mud puddles filled the yard, making it a bastion of quagmire.

                As I listened to the falling droplets patter on my tin roof, and sat in front of my fireplace with a heavy blanket round my weak, mortal frame, I wrote the following illaudable poem:

 

Ode To Fire

By Robert Breaker III

Written June 2nd 2004

 

Brightly it burns,

Lightly it flitters,

Slightly it grows,

Quickly it glitters.

 

Onward it reaches,

Upward it rises,

Outward it spreads,

Wayward it demises.

 

Yellow it flutters,

Orange it heaves,

Blue it flickers,

But Black it leaves.

 

                Despite the massive downpour, and still feeling dogsick, I drove to the Baptist Camp and found that no one came for services.  I waited a few minutes, and then Hotir and Mike Lane showed up to tell me that they canceled our meeting for the weather. 

Before going home, Bro. Mike asked me to go to his house to see his new "Pistol."  I did so, and was impressed with his nice, nickel-chromed, Taurus .38 revolver.  It was a beautiful gun, and I had to fight the urge to covet.  He also is planning to buy the .22 revolver that he showed me the other day.  Thus, I jokingly responded, "We are going to have a race to see who can buy the most pistols!  I've got one more than you, but if you keep buying them, you'll soon catch up!"

                In the evening I spent my time in front of the fire copying my Spanish Sermons from plain pieces of paper to my leather bound, small, Sermon Book.

 

June 3rd 2004 Thursday                                    A Day With The Kids!

 

                After waking late this morning, I took a nice, hot shower trying to warm my frail "cuerpo" (body).  This helped a little, but I was want to rest some more, and bask under my blessed, calorific electric blanket. 

                At twelve-thirty, I finally dragged myself out of the house and journeyed to the small Indian hamlet of Quebrada de Lajas.  There, I found Adrian's two youngest girls waiting for me at the little house we meet in.  They helped me sweep the floor, and chase out the bats.  (Yes, the house is full of small bats!)

                I also took them with me on visitation, and we had wonderful success.  In one house, I met a man who worked at a "Chicken House," with several other young men.  I had the delightful privilege of giving them all a Bible.  And, they even came for service in the evening!

                The rest of the day, I spent time visiting, and picking up a few children at each home.  Eventually, I had a big group of children following me from house to house.  We skipped along on the mountain prairies, jumped across the small valley streams, and frolicked through the forests, while stopping to eat wild blackberries, chase butterflies, and pursue calves through the cow pasture, trying to pet them.  I thoroughly enjoyed myself, as I felt I was back in my childhood again!

                In service, we had a full house.  There were over twenty people there in total, but the many children became quite loud, and distracted the service continually, despite my constant correction. 

I taught on "The Order of Salvation," and showed that before one can be saved he must have someone that is 1. Sent to preach to him.  Then he must 2. Hear the Gospel, and 3. He Must Understand It.  Afterwards, 4. He Must Believe On Christ (through faith in His blood).  If he does so, then he is 5. Sealed, 6. Born Again as a Son of God, and 7. He Will Most Certainly Know That He Is Saved!

                       

June 4th 2004 Friday                                          Visitors

 

                Awaking this morning with stomach pains, I decided to stay indoors and study.  Julio came over to visit around ten o'clock, and he asked me to print up some Bible verses for him, which he desires to put on his car.

                Later in the afternoon, Mercedes came by to visit with me.  (She was the woman I took to the hospital two years ago when it was time for her to have her baby).  I was surprised to see her son David was already two years old.  She herself had changed as well, and I hesitate to say for the better.  Before she was a shy, bashful Indian woman used to dressing in traditional Indian attire.  But today she was dressed in a worldly fashion, and seemed quite forward.

                An hour before service began, David (Castillo's son) came over and brought a friend of his named Hector Nahum (but everyone calls him Tyson).  They helped me feed the chickens, and I entertained them until services started.  Apart from David and his guest, only the Cordoba clan showed up for service.  I taught them from chapter six of 1 Corinthians, verses nine through eleven, stressing the words "such were some of you" and the need for holy living.           

                I had to battle with stomach pains most of the day, so I took a laxative.  It hit right before bed, and it was good to have an empty stomach and a small bit of release from my pain.

 

June 5th 2004 Saturday                                      Bible Institute, Bats, and Brooms

 

                I stayed up late last night studying for my Bible Institute class today.  As I read through the book of Acts, I found some things I hadn't noticed before.  As I read chapter eight, I found that the first Missionaries sent by a Local Church were Peter and John, who went to Samaria.  They were sent from the brethren in Jerusalem, and preached in many cities there before returning to Jerusalem.  In contrast, I read about Philip, who the Bible calls an "evangelist" (Acts 21:8).  The Bible doesn't say that Philip was sent out from a Local Church, but he certainly went out to preach in many different places.  Thus, I concluded the difference between a Missionary and an Evangelist is that a Missionary is one that's sent by the Local Church, and an Evangelist is one that preaches wherever he goes.  (Although I believe it's better that he have a home church backing him).

                Before my Bible Institute class, I asked my students who the first Missionary sent by the Local Church was, and their answers ranged from Paul, to Barnabas, to Philip and more.  I then showed them Acts 8:14, and they were as surprised as I was to find that it was indeed John and Peter.

                After class, I went to the Internet shop to check my email.  From there I drove to the gun repair shop to have my small pistol adjusted.  The trigger sticks at times, and the man said he'd fix it, as the job he did is still under warranty.  While in his shop, he showed me a nice, WW II, Russian made 9mm pistol.  He offered to sell it to me for 5000 lempiras, but I refused, as I feel I have enough.

                On visitation, Lindsey and Victor went with me to "La Pozona" and the little community of Santa Anita a few miles up the road from the Baptist Camp.  There we visited several houses, and invited people to services.

                One man, named Jose Santos Ortiz, was very glad to see us, and talked with us for some time about the Bible.  He claimed to be saved, and quoted many Bible verses.

                In the afternoon, I went up to the gun shop for my pistol, and found the trigger spring much stronger than it was before.  Afterwards, I journeyed up to Quebrada de Lajas to rent the house across the street from where we are now renting.  Mr. Jose Avila was there waiting for me and together we cleaned the house and prepared it for service next Thursday. 

                When I entered the old house for a broom to help Mr. Avila, I counted several bats hanging on the ceiling.  Upon further inspection, I found even more bats in the other rooms (about 30 total).  This is why we are moving, as we desire to be away from the pestilent bat populous.

                After paying Mr. Avila for the house, I went up the hill and had dinner with Jose Martir and his wife Blanca.  We talked until sunset, and then I went home to rest.

 

June 6th 2004 Sunday                                         The Mind

 

                Jose Martir didn't show up for services in Quebrada de Lajas, nor did Toribio, Santos, or any other gentlemen.  Thus, I preached to a house of woman and children.  My message was "La Mente" (the Mind) and "What one Ought to Do With their Mind."  I showed them that one can think 1. "Mal" (Wickedness), or conceive thoughts of 2. "Manipulación" (Manipulation).  They also can use their brain to 3. "Imaginar" (Imagine).  But more importantly they should use their noggin to 4. "Memorizar La Escritura" (Memorize Scripture).

                I finished by showing what the Bible says they should think on.  They are as follows: 1. Cosas Puras (Pure Things) according to Philippians 4:8, 2. "La Palabra de Dios" (The Word of God) in 1 Tim. 4:15, 3. "Su Peregrinaje" (or their Christian Pilgrimage) from Hebrews 11:13 and 1 Peter 2:11, 4. "Otros Personas" (Other Persons) in Philippians 2:3,4, and 5. "Plantar Semillas" (Planting Seeds) according to 1 Cor. 3:5-9 and 2 Tim. 4:2.

                When I arrived home, I walked back to the Baptist Camp and played a brief game of soccer with the Cordoba boys until Mike Lane arrived with his car full of people.  We started at five thirty, and people kept dragging in a few at a time until six.  I led the song leading again, and Mike preached.  Afterwards, there were refreshments for those who came. 

 

June 7th 2004 Monday                                        Off To Tegucigalpa

 

                First thing this morning I drove to Tegucigalpa.  Upon my arrival, I went to the Post Office and then to Nutek Systems to see Otto Martinez and leave him my vehicle to fix the back right tail light.  I also asked him to put a plastic liner in the entire floor of the truck, so that my carpet will be protected from the mud.

                Afterwards, I took a taxi to the Cancer Center and then rested.   Later in the afternoon, I walked up to the Mall, and then ran some errands in a taxi, being careful to witness to the driver and leave him a tract.

                Anita Hurst bought me a Pizza in the evening, and I savoured every bit of it.

 

June 8th 2004 Tuesday                                       Heading Home

 

                Otto said my truck would be ready today at nine o'clock.  However, as usual, this was not the case.  Thus, I waited at the Cancer Center for news.  Missionary Herbert Prince was there, and he talked with me for a while.  I told him I'd be heading back to La Esperanza today, and he asked for a ride.  I was more than happy to oblige.  Thus, when I finally did receive my vehicle (at two o'clock, Mr. Prince and I left for La Esperanza (after a brief stop at Pricesmart for some groceries).

                We talked the whole way and had a pleasant conversation.  Upon our arrival in La Esperanza, I dropped him off at his Bible Institute just outside of La Esperanza.  Then I headed home. 

                I was late in arriving for Bible Study, but was happy to see Zarahi, Eleazer, Iris, and Hotir there waiting for me.  They helped me unload the truck and put away my groceries.  I thanked them sincerely, and made them a glass of chocolate milk for their help.  It was the first time they'd every had it, and they liked it immensely.

                Before leaving, I gave them some juice, fruit, vegetables, ice, and some other things to take with them. 

 

 

June 9th 2004 Wednesday                 Sick Again

                       

                I awoke this morning sick again, feeling just plain awful.   But, Bro. Homero Romero and his family were supposed to come and visit me, so I spent most of the morning cleaning the house.  I began with sweeping the floors, and then wet dusting.  Afterwards, I mopped the whole house. 

When I finished, the phone rang.  It was Homero Romero.  He said that there was a strike in San Pedro and they had all the roads closed so that no one could enter or leave the city.  Thus, he couldn't come.

                The rest of the day I spent reading and resting.  I have started the book "The Republic" by Plato.  After reading a few hundred pages, I am convinced that he was a complete pagan, liberal, reprobate, who had no clue whatsoever about what he was talking about.   No wonder modern "scholarship" is so fond of him, as "birds of a feather flock together." 

                He begins by talking about "Justice," but never does give a clear-cut definition of what it is.  Then those in the story continue "arguing" or "debating" the topic without ever coming to a logical conclusion.  What a sham is "Philosophy" and "Philosophers."  Why can they never give a simple, brief, clear-cut answer on anything?

                In the evening service at the Baptist Camp, I taught on "Eternal Security," as Mr. Mike Lane is out of town this week.  We didn't have a very big crowd because of the rain, but those that came wanted to learn.  Also Mercedes came as well.

                After service I took everyone home in my truck.

 

June 10th 2004 Thursday                                  A Rainy Day!

 

                It rained all day today.  In the afternoon, I journeyed out to Quebrada de Lajas.  I took my two "gallos" (roosters) with me to exchange for two hens.  To Angelica, I gave the white, black, brown, and yellow rooster, and to Blanca I gave the black one with yellow, purple, and red.  They both in turn gave me a nice, little hen.

                Because of the horrendous rain, the creek in Quebrada de Lajas was almost a river, as hundreds of gallons of water came  rushing under the small, one lane bridge there.  I took some of the local children down to watch the water when the rain stopped.  The muddy waters flowed ferociously down the hill, churning mightily as they turned at each bend with horrendous power.  The children made comments like, "It looks like chocolate," and "Look at the foam it makes!"

                Many of the children came with me to the Hernandez house.  I taught on "Your Job," and stressed to them at they are to work both spiritually (for the Lord) and physically (for their boss, parents, teachers, or spouses).

                In our evening service, we had a crowd of mostly children.  Martir and his wife Blanca came in late (as usual), while I had already starting preaching.  My message was "Acceptance."  I preached about how 1.  Jesus Christ accepted the will of God the Father in coming to die on the cross.  I continued by saying 2.  God the Father accepted the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross as final and sufficient.  I then stated that every one in the world must 3.  Accept Jesus Christ and his sacrifice (by faith in the blood that he shed on the cross of Calvary) in order to be saved.  And, if they do accept Jesus Christ as Saviour, they will be 4.  Accepted in the beloved.  I then closed by telling them that every Christian must then accept God's will for them, which is serving him by testifying to others, living holy, and pleasing him.  If they do so, then: 5. They will at the Judgment Seat of Christ have the opportunity to accept a reward for their service.

                Driving home, I ran into my old friend Hernan walking down the road.  He was with another many named Samuel Oyuela, who was a Doctor.  Hernan told me he gives "Blood Tests" at his clinic in town.  They showed me where it was as I took them home, and I wrote down the good Doctor's phone number with the intention of soon going to have my blood tested with the intention of knowing if I indeed do have malaria, and finding out what type my blood is.            

 

June 11th 2004 Friday                                        Plants, Phone Call, and Plato's "Republic"

 

                Bani came over early this morning to cut the grass.  I also worked for several hours with the weed eater, cutting grass and putting the finishing touches on the yard.

                Upon my completion, I went to the garden and picked a lot of squash and zucchini.  There was so much of it, that I took several bags full of it to my neighbors.  One was so nice that she in turn fed me some chicken soup, which was quite good.

                Later in the afternoon, I was just about ready to go inside and take a shower, when the water pump began making a strange sound and began bellowing forth clouds of yellow smoke.  I ran to see what was the problem, and had Castillo go to turn it off.

                Not knowing what to do, I called Bani and Hotir to come over, as they are studying electricity.  They took it apart, and we found a small snake inside, which had shorted out the motor.  The coil was completely burnt and will have to be replaced.  Bani assured me that he can fix it, but I will have to buy the wire.

                As we spoke, Bani told me that he was mad at Mike Lane, and desired not to have anything to do with him, because he called Missionary Thomas Sweeney a "thief" and a "liar."  I immediately rebuked him and told him we must forgive and forget; and as Jesus said, 490 times at the least.  Bani quickly countered, "Well, he only has 489 times left!"  Hotir then interrupted stating, "No, that's 490 times in a day!"  This didn't make Bani too happy.

                Later in the afternoon, after taking a bath in a bucket of distilled water, David came over to bother me.  While here, my good friend Abe Nazario from New York called, and I had a wonderful time conversing with him.

                As we sat on the back porch (as my cell phone doesn't work inside because of the Tin roof and thick adobe brick walls), we noticed continually that there were many "Gringos" at the Baptist Camp behind my house.  They are part of a team that came down to visit with Bro. Mike Lane, and are traveling around with him to see different works.  David told me that the people in the neighborhood are calling the Baptist Camp "Gringolandia" (Gringo Land) because of all the Americans there.  That was quite funny!

                In Bible Study we finished chapter six of 1 Corinthians.  I had only young men who came.  I preached dogmatically against fornication and gave examples of why one should not use God's body for the flesh.  My exact, rather crude, words were "Deje su pepinillo en sus pantalones hasta que se cases" (Keep your cucumber in your pants until you get married!)

                Before bed, I read more from Plato's "Republic."  I am convinced that Adolph Hitler must have used it to pattern his "Third Reich," as the Nazi regime followed it to a tee! It is full of "State Education," "State-sponsored Propaganda," "Armies" and "Army Elites," "Physical Training by the State," "Gender Mixing," "Making Babies for the State," and more.  It is by far one of the worst books I've ever read, as it is completely humanistic and holds no place for a holy, righteous God whatsoever (only wicked, pagan Greek gods).  To me his "republic" is a perfect example of the kind of government the Anti-Christ will endeavor to use, and by watching the UN policy making, it seems that Plato's insane system is exactly what they are trying to model their "United Nations" after.  God help us, as Plato's system holds no place for ultimate truth, and individual expression, rather only unsheeted depravity and deception.

 

June 12th 2004 Saturday                                   Missions, Power Outage, and Internet Café

 

                Bible Institute went well today.   I taught on "Missions" and showed them the early church in action.  I was faithful to point out the difference between the Jerusalem Church (a "legalistic" society which wanted to go back to the law, and separate themselves from the Gentiles), and the Antioch Church, which was interested in sending out Missionaries and seeing people saved.

                After class, I journeyed to the Internet Café and checked my email.  I also ran a few errands before driving home to find the electricity had gone out.  Later in the afternoon, we had a horrendous storm blow through, and that hindered us from going on visitation.  Thus, I spent the evening reading by the fire.

 

June 13th 2004 Sunday                                      Services

                       

                Most of the morning I spent cleaning the house.  Afterwards, I prepared for my journey to Quebrada de Lajas.  My truck is very muddy inside because of the heavy rains here, and I desired to clean it.  But without water, I found this an impossibility. 

                At Quebrada de Lajas, I preached again my message about "Acceptance."  One of the young men there is not saved, and once again decided to put off accepting Jesus Christ as his Saviour.  How sad.  I can force no one to be saved, as they must decide for themselves whether to accept or reject the Lord as their Saviour.  But I can pray for them, and continue telling them the truth, hoping that some day they will come to their senses and choose Christ Jesus as their Sacrificial Blood Atonement.

                At the Baptist Camp, not very many people came for service.  I preached to them the same message, (as Mr. Mike Lane is out of town this week with the "Gringos") and found myself filled with the Holy Ghost and boldness.  The message touched many hearts, and many decided they must needs do more for the Lord so that at the Judgment Seat of Christ, they will have something to "accept" at the hand of God for their service for him.

                Upon taking everyone home, I went home to finish cleaning the house.  My mother comes on Tuesday to visit me.  She flies into San Pedro Sula, and I have decided tomorrow to go there and rent a hotel room so that I can bathe, relax, and have a day to myself before she arrives.

 

June 14th 2004 Monday                                      Going to San Pedro Sula

 

                I left my house at nine this morning and drove to San Pedro Sula.  It felt so wonderful to leave the cool climate of La Esperanza, and arrive into such a hot, humid environment like that of the tropics at sea level.  As odd as it may sound, I enjoy the super hot weather, and sweating profusely.

                Upon my arrival to the big city, I went to a car wash and had the mud washed off of and out of the truck.  How great it is to have a plastic floor inside, as it makes it so much easier to clean the interior.

Afterwards, I ran some errands, and then spent the night at the Family Inn, enjoying being able to rest, and shower.

 

June 15th 2004 Tuesday                                     Breaker, Breaker

 

                First thing this morning I drove to Homero Romero's house and visited with him.  He was nice enough to offer me some breakfast, but I declined as I had just eaten some leftover Pizza from the night before. 

                I asked Homero to take me to a store where they sell copper wire (to fix the motor on my water pump), and he agreed to do so.  Together we drove downtown and found what we needed at a store that sells all things having to do with electricity and electronics.  I explained the situation to the man behind the counter about my motor and showed him what kind of wire I needed.  When I went to pay for it, the man asked me my name.  I replied, "I'm Robert Breaker."  He then asked if my name was spelled like a "Circuit-Breaker" and I replied that it was.  He couldn't help but chuckle and replied, "Thus a Breaker comes to where they sell Circuit-Breakers and needs wire for his Broken Pump!"  I gave the man a tract, but he claimed to be saved already.  His name was Walter Rivas, and he was very nice.

                After taking Homero and his family to the Grocery Store, I drove to the Airport to pick up my Mom.  Her plane was to arrive at 11:30 A.M.  However it was delayed and didn't touch down until about two hours later.  I waited in the arrival area and passed out tracts and witnessed to others.

                When my Mom arrived, we then journeyed to Homero's house where we had a wonderful lunch of tacos.  Homero and his wife were happy to meet my Mom, and with their broken English and my translating skills we were able to carry on a good conversation.

                We went to Pricesmart afterwards (Like a Sam's Club in the states) and bought groceries before heading home.  As we drove along, Mom told me that she's been telling people in the states who ask how many children she has, "I have two:  One is a Preacher, the other is a Creature! (my sister)."  That was too funny!

                Upon our arrival home, we put away the groceries, and began unpacking her suitcases.  She brought me many pairs of nice Dockers pants, some beautiful long sleeve shirts, and more.  (It was better than Christmas!)  She also had several boxes of bullets for me, of which I asked for.  She called the Airline and asked if she could bring them, and they told her it was legal to do so.  When she arrived in Honduras, she asked the baggage lady behind the counter who x-rays the luggage, "Do you speak English?"  The woman replied, "Yes, a little!"  Then my Mom responded, "Well, I have bullets in that bag!"  The lady then replied, "Bullets?  Bullets?  Well, Okay!"  And that was that!  (We don't think she even knew what bullets were).

                In the evening I cooked a great meal of Grilled Chicken that had been soaked in a Grapefruit Juice sauce with many herbs, covered in Monterey Jack Cheese and alfalfa sprouts.  We also had a good conversation about how precious the blood of Jesus Christ really is.

               

June 16th 2004 Wednesday                               Invaded With Dizziness

 

                We journeyed into "El Centro" (downtown) of La Esperanza today and bought some much needed items.  As a single man, I have learned that I am able to do without many things.  But my Mother gave me helpful suggestions on things I needed, of which I had never thought about.  Thus we bought some pots, washcloths, dishes, and more.

                We also went to the Pharmacy and bought some Chloroquine Phosphate (Quinine) for my Malaria.  I took all ten pills at once, as my mother advised me, and was quite surprised to find that the medicine was not good to me.  At the Baptist Camp in the evening, when I stood up to lead song leading, I began to feel very dizzy, and it became hard to make my eyes focus.  I thought I was going to pass out, but I struggled through it, and quickly sat down after the offering, feeling as though I was in an inebriated state.

                Mr. Mike Lane taught on Eternal Security, and it was a good message.  I translated for my Mom so she could understand.

 

June 17th 2004 Thursday                                  Quebrada de Lajas

 

                I talked with Mike Lane last night and asked him to come with me this morning to buy some wood to make benches in our new church building in Quebrada de Lajas.  At ten this morning we drove up to the local Saw Mill, and found they were closed.  Afterwards, we drove outside of town to another Saw Mill, and found them shut down as well.  The "vigilante" (watchman) of the place told us that some "Anti Tree-Cutting" society had closed them down until the end of this month, and put pressure on the government to keep them from cutting down trees until then.  So we drove home empty handed.

                Upon my arrival home, I found about thirty small children in my yard hugging my Mother, and showing her no little affection.  They were kids from the local kindergarten class, of which their teacher brought them over looking for me.  Her reason was to ask me if I could take my lawnmower over to the school and cut the grass in the courtyard.  I gave the job to Bani, and he was more than happy to take it, as I told him he could keep what he made from it.

                Later I drove Mom out to Quebrada de Lajas and took her from house to house to visit the people there.  I acted as translator, and we visited with many different families.   Most of the people were sick, and I translated as Mom gave them medical advice (she's a nurse).

                Blanca was nice enough to invite us into her kitchen, and she began asking my Mother many questions.  I translated and it was interesting to watch her face, as she couldn't understand anything that my Mom said in English, but could understand me in Spanish.  It was her first time to go through an interpreter, but she quickly picked up on how to communicate through another.

                Bro. Mike Lane came at four o'clock, and at five I took him to the Hernandez house for services.  There I taught on the subject of "The Lost World," and I stressed the need for us to not forget others, but to pray for and witness to them.  Afterwards, I showed Mike which houses he needed to visit next week to bring people to service, as I'll be out of town, and he'll be preaching in my place.

                Our first nightly service in our new building went well.  We had a good crowd of about 35 people.  Mike Lane let me borrow five wooden benches he had, and each one of them were full.  I preached on the subject of "The Blood."  My points were that the Blood is 1.  Pura (Pure) from Acts 20:28, 2. Preciosa (Precious) according to 1 Peter 1:18,19, and 3. Poderosa (Powerful) as in 1 Juan 1:7, it's the only thing that can cleans of sin.  I closed with Romans 3:25 and stressed to them that the only way to be saved is by faith in the blood of Jesus Christ!

 

June 18th 2004 Friday                                        Fishing, Shooting, and Bible Study

 

                After breakfast, Carlos came by to go fishing.  I invited him yesterday, and fishing is something he loves to do.  My Mom brought several small, collapsible fishing poles with her from the states, and Carlos admired them amorously.  Never had he seen such a nice fishing pole (as he's used to using a small stick and some string), and he sat and stared at the apparatus and the small tackle box that came with it for quite some time, studying and regarding with wonder the many different lures and plastic minnows.

                Shortly thereafter, David came by as well, and I took them, with my Mom, up to the small lake a few miles from my house to go fishing.  We started with lures, but had no luck.  We then changed to "Masa" which is ground corn meal dough, but had no bites.  Finally, Carlos opened a can of worms, which he had in a small, circular Tupperware container with black dirt in it, and we fished with them.  No one caught anything except for Carlos, and his was anything but a "Whopper."  It was only about four inches long at the most, but at least we were joyful that we didn't walk away empty-handed.

                Later in the day, I let my Mom shoot my pistols out in the yard.  She did a great job, and is a wonderful shot with both the .25 and the 9mm.  I also let Carlos have a shot as well, as he'd never shot a gun before in his life.  He only missed the target by about six feet, as he closed his eyes and shot down at the ground.

                Erick Sanchez came by in the afternoon, and we chatted.  I played interpreter, and my Mom enjoyed speaking with him.  When he left my Mom said, "I like that guy!  He has good character!"

                In our nightly Bible Study there was a great crowd of young people.  I taught on "The Rules of Marriage" from 1 Corinthians chapter seven and stressed to them their need to stay pure until they get married.  I also told them the importance of marrying a Christian person, following the Bible rules for Marriage, and never thinking about divorce as an option for any reason.

 

 

 

June 19th 2004 Saturday                                   Bible Class, Visitation, Americans, and Dinner

 

                Last night I stayed up late studying for my Bible Class for this morning.  And, praise be to God, I finally finished my outline!  At eight o'clock this morning, I took Mom with me to the Lenca Bible Institute and taught on the subject of "The Life of the Apostle Paul." 

                Afterwards, we went to the Internet Café and I checked my email.  We also stopped and visited several people along the way, including Hernan Corrales, Ramon Galeano, and others.

                At four o'clock we traveled out to Quebrada de Lajas once again for the Birthday Party of Kenia (Jose Martir's sister's daughter), who turned nine today.  We enjoyed cake, coke, and Nacatamales.

                There was an American Couple there as well, and we talked with them for some time.  They live in Quebrada de Lajas, and have a small farm.  I forget his name, but hers is Stephanie Foster.

                In the afternoon, I took Alex, Lindsey, and Victor out on Visitation.  They were scared to death to open their mouths, but I coerced them to speak at each house and invite people to services.  They have a long way to go, but at least they are now beginning to open their mouth and witness for the Lord Jesus Christ.

                At seven o'clock Mike Lane came over, as well as Rich Fisher and his wife Janet.  I invited them all for dinner a few days ago.  Mom and I cooked some spaghetti for them.  We had a great meal, and some very enlightening conversation.  It was great to cook and enjoy my mother's company in the kitchen as we prepared the meal.

 

June 20th 2004 Sunday                                      Preaching in Quebrada de Lajas

 

                I spent most of my morning studying and preparing lesson six for the Bible Institute next week.  I won't be here (I plan to be in the island of Utila), and I had to finish it for Erick Sanchez to teach next Saturday. 

                As usual, I journeyed out to Quebrada de Lajas and taught at the Hernandez house.  Toribio (the father of the house) finally was there for service and I talked with him for some time.  He has a job that makes him travel often, and he is hardly ever at home.  This is not good for his family, nor for him as he can't come to service or Bible Study, and I stressed to him his need to pray and ask God to help him to find another job that will give him more time with his family and for God.

                At the Baptist Camp, Bro. Mike preached.   He stressed the need to grow as a church and to have the desire to bring others to service.  He also preached a little about the blood, and said that it's only faith in the blood of Jesus Christ that saves (which was a real blessing)!

 

June 21st 2004 Monday                                      Off to Tegucigalpa!

 

                We left at eight this morning for the capitol city.  Upon our arrival there, I went immediately to the Post Office at the airport.  Then we went to mail some things at my other P.O. Box at Aerocasillas.  The rest of the day we spent running errands.  And of course, we spent some time in the Mall, as my Mother had to buy some things for people in the states.

                In the afternoon, we went to the Cancer Center, and I introduced my Mom to Anita Hurst, the head nurse there.  She gave us a tour, and my Mom was very glad to see an organization existed that was there to help the children of Honduras with Cancer.

                In the evening, we ordered Pizza, and visited with Anita.

 

June 22nd 2004 Tuesday                                    Going to Valle De Angeles and then Back Home

 

                Early this morning, we left for the small village of Valle de Angeles to do some "Souvenir Shopping."  We visited all of the souvenir shops in the town (about 15 total) in two hours.  Mom bought a lot of stuff, and I also bought a few things.  I also was given a small Mahogany Tree, which I cherished, and look forward to planting.

                Afterwards, we drove back to Tegucigalpa and I took Mom to a nice restaurant for some "world-renowned" Pupusas (Tortillas with Cheese inside).  While there, I called the airport and made vacation arrangements for us to fly out of San Pedro Sula tomorrow to La Ceiba, and from there to the island of Utila.  I'll leave my truck with Homero Romero so it will be taken care of, and parked in a safe place.

                Upon finishing our meal, we then headed back to the Cancer Center for our luggage, and then headed to the Barber Shop so that I could get a much needed haircut!  Then we drove straight home, and spent several hours packing and preparing for tomorrow.

 

June 23rd 2004 Wednesday                               Going to Utila!

 

                We left at seven-thirty this morning and arrived in San Pedro Sula at a little after ten.  We did some shopping at the local mall there, and then killed some time before we had to meet Homero Romero at his children's school.  We followed Homero home, and then he came with us in my truck to the airport. 

                Our plane was one hour and thirty minutes late, and we could do nothing but wait until it arrived.  I taught Mom the saying that we Missionaries say here when things don't go the way they should, which is, "Oh Well!  Only in Honduras!"

                After a brief stop in La Ceiba, we then journeyed on to the beautiful island of Utila via Sosa Airlines in a small, thirty-passenger airplane.  We landed at the new airport, and the view of the island from my starboard side window seat was simply breathtaking.  Hank's Taxi took us to the Baptist Church, and when we arrived we called on my old friend Julio Cordón (Baptist pastor there) to help us find a place to stay.  He lent us his motorcycle, and together Mom and I rode around the island looking for a good hotel.  We eventually found a place owned by a Dr. Bruce and his wife Lupe called the Tropical Sunset, which was very nice, and we were blessed to obtain a room for a good price. 

                I left Mom there, and I took the Motorcycle back to get our luggage.  As I rode down the concrete pavement roads, I enjoyed the warm sun, the cool ocean breeze, and the atmosphere of the island.  Oh how much I miss the water!

                It took two trips to bring all our luggage, as I could only carry two bags at a time on the motorcycle.  I then returned it to Julio, and spoke with him for some time.  He asked me the purpose of my visit and I told him it was strictly a "vacation" and time to spend with my Mom.  We also planned to take Scuba Diving Lessons as well.  Julio then asked me to preach in the evening service at seven, and I readily accepted.  I taught on the subject of "The Order of the Books in the Bible," showing how God set the books of the Bible in a Pre-millennial order.

                After service, Julio took me to a nice Dive shop called "Underwater Vision" and we were able to sign up for Scuba Diving classes.  They had started that evening, but Tamara (Tammy), the lady in charge was nice enough to give us the books, and ask us to read them in the evening, so that we could join the class already in progress tomorrow.  Thus, Mom and I studied late into the evening from chapters one and two of the PADI (Professional Association of Divers International) guide book.

                       

June 24th 2004 Thursday                                  The Vices of the Beach Community               

 

                Today was our first day of Scuba Diving class.  Our teacher was named Tatiana, and she was from Ecuador.  Her father is an ambassador from there (although she said she was born in Brazil).  She taught us for several hours in the morning, and in the afternoon, we were in the water learning how to do exercises.  Our class was very small, and it was interesting to see the cultural diversity represented within our ranks (Utila has people from all over the world there to learn how to dive).  There were five total in our class, including my Mother and myself.  The others included a young lady named Rebeeca from England, a man named Igor from Czechoslovakia, and a young college student from Charleston, S.C. named Billy.  Together we learned how to clear our masks, remove and replace them, find our breathing apparatus if it falls out of our mouth, and other things, all underwater.  It was an interesting experience to learn to breath underwater, and it was trying at first, as it took your body some time to get used to breathing at another pace.  (Slow breaths in and slow breaths out).  I found the hardest part to be breathing out, as I really had to push to force the bubbles to leave the valve.

                We also learned how to make ourselves weightless underwater, and how to keep from getting the BENDS, lung over expansion, and more.  When we surfaced, I remember looking up and seeing a familiar site from my days surfing.  There were many small spots constantly changing and moving on the face, and I remember thinking, "That's rain!"  Sure enough, it was raining very hard when we broke through the top, and I heard one of the assistant instructors say, "I've never seen rain from underwater before!  That was my first time!"  It was truly a beautiful site.  After our instruction, we were taken back to the dock, and then given some time to eat, rest, and study, before classes in the evening. 

As we walked home, I thought to myself how much of a temptation it would be for me to live on this island.  I love the water, and I can't explain how exciting, and wonderful it is to be back in the salt water.  How I miss it, how I love it, how I need it!  I'm convinced I must have salt water in my blood, as I'm drawn to it like a magnet.  Being born close to the water, my body longs for the ocean.  But alas, I am not my own.  I'm bought with a price, and if God wants me in the mountains, although I abhor them and long for the sea, I must obey.

As I pondered upon this, and struggled within myself with the desire to come and live on this island, I thought about what the greatest temptations on the island must be.  What is it that people here love more than God?  After much consideration, and a critical eye studying those around me, I came to the conclusion that their vices would be "Sun, Sand, Surf, Sex, Spirits (Wine, Beer, and liquor) and Sports."  And now after trying Diving, I can add "Scuba" to the list, for it is most enjoyable.

In the evening, we had class, and I prepared "Baliadas" (Tortillas folded in half with cheese and beans inside) while we were made to watch an Instructional video that corresponded with our classes.

When it was over, Mom and I walked back to our hotel and went straight to bed exhausted from the sun, the salt water, and the intense training.

 

June 25th 2004 Friday                                        Our First Real Dives

 

                Early this morning we studied chapters three and four of the PADI book.  While our teacher taught, I looked down at the table and saw that someone had scribbled the letters PADI.  Under each letter they wrote a word.  Together it said, "Put Another Dollar In" followed by an exclamation mark.  I could not help by laugh, as Scuba Diving does appear to be a rather expensive sport.

                Later in the afternoon, they took us on a boat to dive.  We were told we would see "Black Coral" which is supposedly extinct in all other parts of the world, as well as many other kinds of fish, coral, and ocean plant life.  As we traveled, we began to make small talk.  I opened conversation with Igor, the Czech, and asked him about the gun factories they have there, telling him I have a CZ 75 pistol manufactured there.  He didn't seem too talkative however.  Rebeeca, the English woman then asked about why we would have weapons.  Her response was "I would think that people who have guns only have them to kill people."  I replied that this was not the case, and that Americans believe in the right to bear arms.  This eventually turned to a conversation about how differently we speak.  To Mom and I, her accent was very strong and very British.  But to her, we were informed, that we (and especially Billy from South Carolina) sounded like "Cowboys" in the way we talked.  This was quite amusing.

                When we arrived at the dive sight, we followed each other in pairs.  Our first dive was at what they called "Black Coral Wall" and our second was at a place named "Pretty Bush."  We saw a plethora of beautiful and colorful fish, including Hogfish, Dog Snapper, Yellowtail Snapper, Scrawled Filefish, a Trumpet fish, and more.  But the best part was swimming with a large Hawk's Bill Sea Turtle!  It must have been at least three to four feet long, and I was lucky enough to be the closest to it (about two feet away), and I swam beside it for several minutes.

                On the boat trip home, some of the crew began joking with our assistant instructor Eric and his girlfriend (another assistant instructor) about their need to be married.  My Mom overheard this, and told them that I, as a minister, could marry them if they'd like.  Eric looked at me and shook his head no in terror.  Why is it that men are so afraid to be married nowadays?

In the evening, I left Mom in the hotel, and I walked up the road to the Baptist Church for services.  On the way, I passed a car full of young people who yelled to me saying, "Hey, you dropped your money!"  I then turned and saw several lempiras on the ground.  As I stooped to pick them up, responding, "Thanks!" it quickly hopped away.  I stopped and then shook my head.  Then I realized it was all a gag.  They had the money tied on a string and were playing with me.  I laughed and then walked away chuckling to myself, yet a little embarrassed.  At least I now know what the young people do on the island for fun.

Walking even further down the narrow concrete road on Utila, I happened upon a man coming towards me whistling.  I did not know the tune, and he appeared to be a European, but I listened to the melody.  After he passed and went on his way, I myself was whistling as well.  Afterwards I thought to myself, "Whistling, just like a yawn, must be contagious, as it's easy to want to whistle when you hear another doing the same."

At church, it was their "Youth Night," and I was told that my old friend Dario was there visiting from La Ceiba.  When I entered the building, I found he and his wife Alba sitting in the front of the church.  We hugged each other and our first words were both the same, "You're a little fatter than you were the last time I saw you!"  We had some great fellowship in the evening, and Dario took me back to the hotel on the Pastor's Motorcycle (I guess he'll let anyone use it!)

 

Me on the Pastor's Motorcycle

 

June 26th 2004 Saturday                                   Our Second Real Dives

 

                We left at seven this morning to go diving again.  Not only was I still tired, but I felt very drained of energy from the sun burn I'd received the day before.  Yet, I pressed on.  Our first dive sight was called "Raggedy Key."  We saw Yellow Damsel Fish, Rock Beauty Angelfish, Giant Barrel Sponges, Queen Angelfish, and more.  But the most exciting thing was spotting a huge, Green Morey Eel curled up sleeping between some rocks. 

                In our second dive, we went to a site named "Madeline's Bight."  There we saw a Trumpet Fish, Spotted Drum, Brown Garden Eel, Squirrel Fish, Sergeant Majors, and more.  But the greatest part was seeing a Sea Horse.  It was only about six inches long, but it was beautiful!  Also, we saw a bunch of Caribbean Reef Squids, which were very entertaining.  They glided through the water on a set plane, and as a flock of geese, were in a "V" shape as they swam.  They were simply amazing how they flew so softly through the water.  How amazing, and how beautiful are God's creatures!  If felt as if I could watch them for hours.

                After coming back from our dives, we were given time to go back to our hotel and rest a while before our final exam.  At 2:30 P.M. we returned to our Dive School and took our final.  It consisted of 50 questions, and we were given as much time as we needed to complete it.  I didn't study much, and really didn't care about doing well, as I felt as though I had already been diving and had seen enough.  Our teacher Tatiana said she'd buy an ice cream for those that made 100%.  No one did.  I made the lowest grade in the class at 80%.  (Not bad for not studying too much!) 

                Tatiana then gave us our certification papers.  Now Mom and I are Certified PADI Open Water Divers!  This means we can go to a depth of 60 feet any where in the world with any dive shop, by just showing our card. 

                Since no one made an hundred percent, Mom and I wanted ice cream anyway, and we invited our instructor and Rebeeca to have some.  They accepted, and together we walked up to the Ice Cream Shop and had the most wonderful ice cream I've ever eaten in my entire life.

                As we walked, I saw a place called "Mamitas" (Little Momma's).  Then I remembered the name of the restaurant we ate lunch in a few days ago was called "Big Momma's Place."  So I guess both Big Mamma and Little Mamma live on the island.

                We rested in the evening exhausted from the sun, the salt water, diving, and mental exhaustion.

 

June 27th 2004 Sunday                                      Our Last Dives

 

                Mom wanted to stay in today until our dives, and asked me to walk up the street and buy some fruit for breakfast.  This I did, but I decided to have some ham and eggs at the "Seven Seas" restaurant for myself.  It was very good.

                In the afternoon, we went out on the boat again for yet more dives.  Our first destination was a site named "Airport Caves."  There we saw, among other things:  Scrawl Filefish, a Hawk's Bill Sea Turtle, Burmuda Chub, Trump fish, Black Margait, French Angelfish, Queen Angelfish, and more.  But the highlight was seeing a huge Manta ray they said was a "Spotted Eagle Ray."

                Before our second dive, Mom became tired, and opted out.  Thus, I went with the rest of the group to a place named "Ron's Wreck," and had Rebecca as my partner (they make you go in pairs).  Together we saw a Rockfish, Spotted Drum fish, Grouper, Blue-Stripped Hamlet, Parrot fish, and more.  But the most exciting part of the dive was seeing a big Barracuda about three feet long.  It swam along side us for a few minutes, as we followed the descending coral wall on the continental reef.  The mouth on the thing was huge, and I kept thinking, "I sure hope he's not hungry!"

                In the evening, I preached at the Baptist Church on the topic of "The Blood."  Before beginning, I jokingly told the people there that Utila is quite a diversified location, with many people of different creeds and race, and I found myself being transformed there by the sun.  I said, "When I came I was a Gringo (White Person), but a few days in the sun, I was changed to the red color of a 'langosta' (lobster).  And now after being out of the sun, I'm finding myself turning into a 'Garifuna' (a black man)!"  The congregation really liked that and they laughed and laughed.

A black woman named Nilda sat by my Mom and translated from Spanish to English so that she could understand.  After it was over, my Mom told me that it was a wonderful experience to actually understand what I was saying, and that she agreed with every word.

After service, we were invited to my old friend Wilmer Vasquez's house.  The Pastor lent us his motorcycle, and I followed Wilmer on his bicycle while Mom rode behind me.  Wilmer's wife Karina is a nurse, and I translated for Mom as they spoke back and forth about "nursing" as my Mom too is an RN. 

Wilmer and I conversed as well, and we caught up on how we've been over the years.  Wilmer was so happy to see me, that he even gave me one of his old Soccer jerseys as a reminder of him. 

 

The Baptist Church on Utila

 

June 28th 2004 Monday                                      Our Last Full Day on the Island

 

                We slept in this morning, exhausted from our last several days of diving.  Not only was I tapped from the sun, the continual kicking of my flippers underwater, and the preaching, but I was feeling very drained from not sleeping well on the hard hotel mattress in the evening.  Thus we relaxed, and tried to rest.

                In the afternoon, we walked into town and ate lunch.  Afterwards, Mom went back to the room, and I had to run some errands.  First, I went to the Hotel office, and paid for our room.  Then I had to walk into town and look for "Frank."  I was told upon entering the island that I had to give him a day's notice in advance of when we were leaving, so he could reserve seats for us on the plane. 

                After asking around, I found Frank in a little yellow building close to the town hall.  He gave us our boarding passes, and told us to be at the airport tomorrow at five-thirty or sooner, and that the plane would leave at six.

                Walking back home, I stopped and visited my friend Wilmer Vasquez at the Gas Station where he works (the only gas station on the island).  While there an old English lady on a 4x4 opened conversation with me asking, "Do I know you?" I replied, "I don't think so.  I'm not from around here."  She then asked my name, and I told it to her.  She then replied, "Well, you're a nice young man, and you should move to the island, as this is a very nice place!"

                Before leaving, I gave Wilmer my pocket-knife, as I wanted him to have something to remember me by, and we said our goodbyes.  Later in the afternoon, Pastor Julio was nice enough to let my Mother and I borrow the motorcycle again, and we took it all over the island as far as the roads would take us.  The island is very small, and in only about five minutes one can cross from one side to another.  We enjoyed driving from the Old Airport to the New, and seeing the sites.   

                We also went to the Public Health Center and visited with Karina (Wilmer's wife).  She gave my Mom a tour of the place, and told us how much the island is in need of more medical equipment and medicine.

                For dinner we had Pizza at a small little place on the island.  It was much different from any Pizza I'd ever eaten, as the tomato paste had sugar in it, and was very sweet.  But we ate it, and even went for ice cream afterwards.

                Before taking the Motorcycle back, we went to several souvenir shops and bought some shirts.  I also bought a few things for myself, such as correspondence paper made from coffee plants, and a few other things.

                After dropping my Mother off at the hotel, I took the motorcycle back to Bro. Julio and said my goodbyes.  Then I walked back the mile or so to the hotel.  Along the way, I saw Eric and his girlfriend, and encouraged them to get married.  They said they'd talked about it, and were thinking about it.

                I also met a Mr. Harry Cooper (who I learned is Missionary Earl Howell's Cousin), and spoke to him about the Lord.  He said his mother was a Baptist, but that he didn't go to church.  I told him he needed to be saved, and trust the blood of Jesus Christ to save his soul.  He in turn thanked me, and said he hated to see me go, and that I should move to the island.  I told him I'd love to, and that I'll pray about it and see what God says.  I would love to do so!

 

June 29th 2004 Tuesday                                     Heading Home, Unfortunately

 

                We awoke at four this morning and began packing for our passage home.  Twenty minutes after five, Hank pulled up in his Taxi to take us to the airport.  I saw him the night before, and asked him to come, and he said he would.  He also stopped and picked up several other people on the way.

                Our flight was a short one (about 20 minutes), but a pleasant one.  I slept most of the way, awaking at times to look out the window and see the beautiful Caribbean Sea about two thousand feet below.

                When we arrived in La Ceiba, we quickly went to the waiting room and were shortly thereafter called to our next plane for San Pedro.  Bro. Homero and his family were there waiting to pick us up, and we had breakfast together at the Wendy's in the terminal.  Mom spoke to Homero's wife, and I translated now and then.

 

Homero Romero and his family

 

                Mom's flight left at twelve, and we waited around until eleven before taking her upstairs to the waiting room.  She hugged Homero and his family goodbye, and even shed a few tears, calling them "Good People."  Before leaving, she also gave Homero's three boys each a dollar bill.  I hugged and kissed her goodbye, and then we parted our ways.

                Afterwards, I went back to Homero's house and told them about the trip.  I told them about seeing Barracuda, Eels, Seahorses, and more.  They were intrigued, and desired to visit Utila as well someday. 

                Before driving home, I took Homero to the Internet Shop, and we both checked our email.  His truck is on the brink with a bad clutch and an old motor, thus he has no way to drive around.  Bro. William Park brought him a new engine, and Homero told me that this week he'll be busy fixing his truck and dropping the new engine in.  Before leaving, I gave him some money to help him and his family, as they are struggling (from losing support from several different churches).

                As I drove home to La Esperanza, I continually missed Utila and dreaded going back to the cold, mountainous terrain of Intibuca.  Over and over again, I was thinking, "I miss Utila!  I miss Utila!"  But I doubt Utila misses me.

                I arrived home late and went directly to Mike Lane's house to ask how services went on Thursday in Quebrada de Lajas.  He told me that all went well, but that there weren't very many people who came.  We conversed for another half hour or so, and then I went home to unpack.

                Before bed, I found a four inch long Scorpion on the floor in my bedroom, and I had to kill it.   As I destroyed it and flushed it down the commode, I thought to myself, "There are no Scorpions in Utila!"

 

Me beside the small airplane that flew us off the Island of Utila

 

June 30th 2004 Wednesday                               Locked Out!

 

                Most of the morning I spent resting, and trying to get over my tiring vacation.  I studied the rest of the day, and then prepared for service in the evening at the Baptist Camp.  Bro. Mike Lane told me he'd be out of town today to go and pick up his wife at the airport, and he asked me to teach in the evening service.  I readily agreed.

                At six, only the Cordoba boys had come for service, and neither of them had the key for the building.  Rich and his wife weren't home either, so we couldn't get the key from them.  Thus, we were forced to have service out on the front porch.  We were supposed to study about "The Bible" from a lesson plan that Mike Lane has, in which everyone was to have a pencil and a New Testament to follow along and fill in the blanks.  However the pencils were inside, and no one brought their Bible, so I decided I'd just preach a short message about a Aquila and Priscilla.  They were a Christian couple that took care of the Missionary Paul (Acts 18:1-3), and worked with him (Acts 18:18, Rom. 16:3), and were faithful to teach others (Acts 18:26), and eventually, because of their faithfulness, Aquila eventually became a Pastor (1 Cor. 16:19).  I stressed the need to have Priscilla's and Aquila's in our church, and for them to be faithful in the work of the Lord, working with the Missionary.

 

July 1st 2004 Thursday                                      Reflections

 

                There are three kinds of people in this world.  They be mountain dwellers, the plains people, and the coastal residents.  I am not a plainsman, nor am I the mountain type (the cool mountain air makes me sickly).  I was born a waterboy, a beach person, an ocean lover.  Thus, it has been a very sorrowful these last couple of days having to come back to the cold, dreary mountains.  My desire is to live by the water, and I find I miss it so much that it's rigidly agonizing.  The more I look around me here, the more I despise this place, and find myself longing to be back in Utila. 

                Thus, most of the day I found myself thinking about Utila, and how much I enjoyed being in that tropical paradise.  I also missed the atmosphere. It's an island of descendents from British Pirates, and most of the people there (the locals) are English-speaking white folk with names like Cooper, Morgan, Howell, Jones, and Smith.  (As I close my eyes and imagine, I can just see the first Pirate ship taking anchor there three hundred years ago full of course, ruddy English men with the same surnames).

                The Language on the island was mostly English, but with a very strange accent.  They spoke almost like the Jamaican people, however their vowels corresponded with those of the Spanish language, rather than English.  And they constantly spoke in high pitches and shrills.  Their speech was annoying at first, but eventually, I found myself enjoying their simple manner of speaking.

                As I thought back to that island of Paradise, I remembered how warm and wonderful the sun was, in contrast to the cool, mountain air here where I live.  I thought upon the wonderful atmosphere and the kindness of the people.  We were told that there were only six police officers on the entire island, and that they didn't have much work to do.  How different from the rest of Honduras, where hoodlums and hooligans are constantly killing each other.

                I thought back to the beautiful people there, and the blond-headed, blue-eyed English characteristics.  I even saw a young woman that looked like Patience.  Being kind, I said, "Hello" as I walked by.  She turned her head away and kept walking, and I thought to myself, "Yep, just like Patience!  She doesn't like me either!"

                Yes, how much I miss the wonderful island of Utila, and what torture I find it to be to have to live in a place with no ocean, no white people, no seafood, no waves, no English, and no tropical breezes.  Not to mention the fact that I've been sick all day with diarrhea, and I find myself constantly thinking, "I didn't get sick like this on the island of Utila!"

                As my mind wandered, and I wished to be back in that costal place of blissful paradise, I thought about Paul, and began to justify my desire of being closer to the sea.  I prayed and reminded God that Paul was a Missionary like myself, and he didn't have to go to the mountains.  Nay, he went by way of the sea on his Missionary journeys.  He was born in Tarsus, a sea-port close to the ocean, and he traveled by boat most of his life until he came to Rome, a peninsula (and quite possibly, he even journeyed to Spain and England – all costal countries).  How I begged and pleaded with God to let me follow his example, and to call me away from these horrid mountains, to anywhere there was a coast.  Oh how I long to be by the sea!  I even pointed out that Jesus traveled by way of the Dead Sea, and when he arose, he crossed the Sea of Glass, to sit upon it.  Not only was Paul, the Missionary, a Seaman, as well as Peter, Andrew, and others, but so is my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!

                But the more I thought about it, the more I became ashamed of myself.  Who am I to think I deserve better?  Who am I to think I should be allowed to go where I please, when there are people dying in the mountains just like they are dying in the coast?  I should do well to forget my earthly desires (however strong they might be), and put the desire of my Saviour and Lord first.  But oh how I miss the water!

The Beautiful Island of Utila in the Background

 

July 2nd Friday 2004                                           Worms, Diarrhea, and More

                       

                As I drove out to Quebrada de Lajas today, I had to turn around and head back home with horrible diarrhea and horrendous stomach pains.  Karina in Utila gave me some Albendazol to clean me up in case I had worms, and I've been taking it the last couple of days.  Sure enough, when I arrived home, and did my business, I found the stool full of tiny little worms. (There were two types, including the Pin Worm and Tape Worm varieties).  How awful it was to think that they'd been living inside of me all this time.  But it was a relief to know that they were being purged by the medicine.

                All day today as well, I had to battle Montezuma's Revenge.  My stomach was queasy most of the day, so I spent my time resting, studying, and unpacking little by little.

                In the evening, the Cordoba Clan came for Bible Study.  David also came.  I taught on the subject of "Divorce," and showed why God is against it.

 

July 3rd Saturday 2004                                      Bible Institute, Sickness, and Baldomero

 

                I left at eight this morning for Bible Institute.  On the way, I found Nahum Paogada and Ovilio Ferrera (two of my students) walking down the road, and I gave them a ride.  Together we walked into class, and I taught on the subject of "The Four Missionary Journeys of Paul."  Erick Sanchez was supposed to teach it last week, but was unable to do so.  Thus he informed me that next week I'll have two hours to teach instead of the regular one in order to catch up.

                After Bible Institute I went to the Internet Shop and checked my email.  Then I walked up the road to the bank to pay my rent.  The line was long, and I ended up waiting for over an hour.  But I was thankful to finally approach the teller and pay my debt before closing.  I also journeyed downtown and paid Mr. Jose Avila for our little building in Quebrada de Lajas that we are renting.

                Upon my arrival home, I continued unpacking and putting things away.  When I looked inside my wallet, I found a piece of paper in my handwriting (of which I don't remember writing) that had the most profound words written upon it:  "Don't worry about the future, the present is all thou hast. The future will soon be present, and the present will soon be past!"  That was a bit of an encouragement, as I'm always finding myself worrying about what tomorrow will bring, and what might happen.  I must learn to only think of the here and now, and try to reach as many as I can now for the Lord Jesus Christ.

                In the afternoon, I fell ill again.  I began sweating profusely, feeling week, and became grave with a massive headache.  Yet I was not too far gone to be hindered from entertaining visitors.  Baldomero Hernandez rode up on his bicycle around three o'clock, and we talked for an hour or so.  He seems to be doing much better, as he's gotten a haircut, cleaned up a bit, and quit drinking.  He claims to be saved, but I don't know.  All I can do is keep witnessing to him. 

                The rest of the evening I spent writing letters, and preparing things to mail to Utila, the U.S., and other countries on Monday when I go to Tegucigalpa.

 

July 4th Sunday 2004                                          Love and Appreciation

 

                I awoke feeling much better this morning.  Maybe the worms are all gone.  Lord, I hope so!  After a good breakfast of Eggs, Bacon, Toast, Beans, and Cheese, I took a shower and spent some time studying.  I was happy to get some sermons copied into my Sermon Notebook, as well as copy some sermon outlines into my computer.

                In the afternoon, I drove out to Quebrada de Lajas.  Before arriving, I stopped at Doña Mirsa's house to visit with her, and tell her about how we will not be needing her building anymore (the one full of bats!).  She wasn't home, but I left her a bag full of Turnips, Squash, and Zucchini from my garden as a peace offering.  I also asked her family to tell her that I will make it a point to kill the bats and clean the house before I give her the key back for the building, and move out completely.  They were thankful, and said that'd be okay.

                On the way to Quebrada de Lajas, I found Toribio Hernandez walking on the side of the road by the soccer field, and gave him a ride.  We talked about several things, and he told me he was just getting home from work.  I told him I was both glad and disappointed to hear it.  Happy I am that he has work, but I'm sad he has to work on Sunday.

                Together we stopped at Jose Martir's sister's house and I gave them some Turnips, Squash, and Zucchini from my garden.  There was just too much of it for me, so I figured I'd "spread the wealth," something my father taught me.  (It's always good to give to others).  Jose Martir was there as well, so I took him with me to the Hernandez house, and we had service there.  I taught about "Aquila and Priscilla" again, as they were on my heart, and showed how important it is to have strong Christians in the church as I, as a Missionary, can't stay in one place forever and someone will have to take over the work after I'm gone.

                Martir told me something that really touched my heart.  He said they missed me last Thursday and that they were waiting eagerly for me to come.  Then he added, "We really need you, because we Indians are such hard people!  If we go several weeks without hearing the truth, we grow cold towards God, and are much harder to reach.  We need you to keep coming and preaching to us!"  This really surprised me, but made me realize how important it is for me to come and preach to them.  Sometimes it seems like it's not worth the trouble, but it's worth it to them, and I find it incredible that they actually look forward to my coming.

                After service, I went up to Martir's house and visited with his family.  They were nice enough to give me several cups of coffee as we sat on the front porch and talked about everything and nothing at all.  It was just good to be in their company, and fellowship with other Christians.

                In service at the Baptist Camp, I led the congregation in a few songs, although my body is still very weak, and I felt as though I should pass out.  Then Mr. Mike Lane preached a message about "God's Grace" and how important it is to be saved by faith alone.  He stressed that it is most definitely not of works, but the work of God alone on the cross of Calvary!

                When service ended, we had a celebration dinner for the return of his wife Debbie from the states.  Many of the women had prepared food, and we ate salad, rice with chicken, and more.  We also had some good cake as well.

                In the evening, I went home and studied some more from my Teaching Company courses on DVD.  I'm almost finished with the course "How to Listen to and Understand Great Music," and I'm learning a lot that I never knew before about Classical Music.  Through the course, I'm gaining a real appreciation and love for pure music that I never had.   I've always liked Classical, but until I took this course, I never really understood it like I do now.  It's opened a whole other world to me as I find I can enjoy the classics in a way that I never knew possible.

                Tonight's class was on Hector Berlioz's "Symphonie Fantastique."  After listening to it, and learning about the author's meaning behind it, I must now say that I believe I have a new favorite piece of music.  The entire piece is simply fantastic (as the title in French implies), and it's incredible to think that someone with such limited Musical education could develop and construct such a wonderful and powerful ensemble.  

The story goes that Mr. Berlioz was inspired by a woman named Harriet Smithson (whom he liked to call Henrietta), an English actress.  He wrote the piece claiming that it was the music that he heard in his mind when he thought about her.  It has five movements (the number of death) and ranges from simply sublime to oddly macabre.  Yet, I can't help but finding myself grossly intrigued by it. 

Movement one is "her tune," or the music he hears within himself when he thinks upon her.  Movement two is him going to a party and listening to a Waltz.  Yet, as it plays, you can constantly hear "her tune" coming and going louder and softer, as he continually is distracted and thinks upon her.  Movement three is him going to nature to try to get his mind off of love, but finding he can't help but be reminded of her.  Movement four is the most scary, but most powerful!  It's a surreal dream where he finds himself in a nightmare, being taken to the guillotine to be beheaded, while she torments him still. (Symbolizing that her love is tormenting him even unto the point of death).  And then one hears a swift "chopping noise" and a rapid "bouncing" noise as he is decapitated, and the head bounces on impact.  The music gives me cold chills each time I listen to it!  It's just so intense! 

The final movement is him in a Graveyard while she tramples on his grave.  Truly, his love for her has killed him, and yet it torments him still so that it continues on even after death!  The sound of the skeletons dancing that he portrays with violins is unreal.  The violinists turned their bows upside down so the wood touched the strings, rather than the horsehair, and it really does sound like the bony bodies of skeletons dancing.  How did he think to do such as that? 

The historical story is that eventually he did marry the woman of which he was so infatuated, Ms. Harriet Smithson.  However, their marriage was anything but happy, as she was a sop drunk, and he was actually afraid of her (he divulges this in his autobiography).  I guess love can be a type of death in more ways than one; both a living death, and a tortuous dying one.  At any rate, she eventually died and he remarried to his mistress.  But boy did he leave behind a powerful Symphony in her honor.  It's interesting how love can inspire someone to do something spectacular.

As I pondered this, I thought about the love that Jesus had for me.  He loved me so much that it killed him!  Can there be a greater love?  And not only that, he arose from his death and then wooed me unto himself.  Now I am His and He is mine.  And our blessed union is anything but unhappy!  He is my everything, and I count myself happy to have the chance to show Him how much I care for him! 

 

July 5th 2004 Monday                                         The Homero Romero Family

 

                Bro. Homero Romero and his family arrived late last night at my doorstep.  They came to visit me, and said they'd left several messages for me.  But I had not received them, and was completely surprised by their arrival.  However, I showed them all the kindness I could muster and we had a good time of fellowship before we all turned in to bed.

                This morning we ate a good breakfast before taking the front brakes off my truck and replacing them with new ones.  Homero always looks out for me, and asks how my truck is doing.  And, he's always more than willing to work on it himself in a kind and helpful spirit of brotherly love.  Thus, we drove down to the brake shop here in La Esperanza after removing the brakes and had Alfonso put new pads on them.  Afterwards we drove back home and reinstalled them.

                It now being around lunchtime, we fixed a magnificent meal of Chicken, mixed vegetables, and Chili (on the side).  Then I took Homero and his boys out back and taught them how to shoot a pistol.  Homero had fired a rifle on many occasions, but was want to discharge a pistol.  He thoroughly enjoyed it, and did great for his first time.  His boys, though, were anything but perfect marksmen.  I let them shoot several shots apiece, and they were unable to even hit the paper, much less the small, black circular target within it.

                My plan was to leave for Tegucigalpa today, and Bro. Homero informed me that they had to return to San Pedro today as well.  So we left at the same time, albeit we were late in leaving.  I arrived in Tegus right before dark, and made the Cancer Center my abode.  I was happy to find Missionary Robert Baker there and we had a pleasant evening of fellowship and Bible Study, as he provoked me to thought with an in depth study of Romans 8:28. 

 

July 6th 2004 Tuesday                                        Cheap Shipping, Car Trouble, and La Cumbre

 

                First thing this morning, I had a wonderful breakfast with Bro. Baker and his wife.  Afterwards, I journeyed into town to run some errands.  I checked my mail at Aerocasillas, as well as also mailed some Bibles, tracts, and other important letters to people in many different countries.  I also journeyed to the Airport and found it pleasantly cheap to send things to the island of Utila by airplane.  To send two boxes, with a combined weight of over forty pounds, full of Bibles and tracts to Pastor Julio Cordón only cost me a measly twenty dollars.  This was much cheaper than I had imagined!

                In the afternoon, I returned to the Cancer Center and rested.  Bro. Baker eventually came by and asked me to run up the road to rescue Anita and his wife, who were stopped in the middle of the street with car problems.  I gladly did so, and found their alternator was bad, which completely drained the battery and left them stranded.  With a set of jumper cables, I recharged their battery, and they followed me to Otto's shop, the car dying just as they pulled into the shop driveway for lack of electricity.

                For dinner, I suggested we go to a place that I'd been told about several times by several different people.  They had said that there is a nice "German Restaurant" on the very highest mountain outside of Tegucigalpa that served the most spectacular food in all of Honduras.  Thus we made it a quest to find the place and sample their cuisine. 

                After a long drive uphill over many narrow, twisty-curvy streets, we eventually arrived at the restaurant known as "La Cumbre" (The Peak).  What we found was anything but tacky.  It had to be the nicest restaurant that I've ever been to.  It sat high upon the side of the mountain overlooking the entire city of Tegucigalpa, and the view was simply breathtaking!  The building itself was designed to look like Hitler's "Eagle's Nest," and had a very German feel about it.  The furniture was of the highest quality, and the walls overlooking the valley were pane glass with mahogany borders.  The waiters were dressed in three-piece suits, and the tableware and silverware looked like something out of Lillian Eichler's book on Etiquette. 

                The food was simply wonderful, and we had a great time enjoying the peaceful tranquility of the high mountain air.  The environment was also quite stunning, as we listened to great classical music play in the background, and saw the entire city turn from light to dark, with many thousands of yellow, blue, green, and white lights glistening in the darkness.  Being so high up, we also saw fog float by the windows on several occasions making us feel even higher up in the clouds.

                Though it costs an arm and a leg to eat at such a beautiful five star restaurant, we all left feeling we got what we paid for, and happy in knowing we had a great meal, good fellowship, a grand view, and grateful memories.

 

July 7th 2004 Wednesday                                  Baker to Airport, Back Tire Problem

 

                This morning I took Bro. Baker to the airport.  He has to go back to the states, as the man he was selling his house to there pleaded Bankruptcy, and if he doesn't return to straighten things out, he'll lose the remainder of what the man owes him on the house.

                I entered the airport with him, and we had a good breakfast there as well.  We also did some souvenir shopping and I bought a nice shirt that says "Honduras" on the front.  When the time came for him to leave, I showed him to his gate, and then we said our goodbyes.

                On the way back to Cancer Center, I had a mini-disaster.  As I was driving along, I heard a terrible sound coming from the back left of my vehicle and felt it began to shake.  Before I could think about what to do, I looked to my left and saw my tire rolling past me towards the opposite curb.  Coming to my senses, I slammed on my brakes as I watched my tire bounce over a chain-link fence and roll onwards towards a Car Wash.  I yelled a word of caution to the men further up, and they turned just in time to jump in front of the rolling mass of steel belted radial (at this time going about thirty miles per hour), and were able to stop it before it rammed into a parked taxi. 

                Several of the Car Wash attendants then walked across the street and brought me my tire.  I put it under the car and then called Otto to see if he could help me.  While I waited for him to show up, I passed out tracts, and witnessed to those who came around to see if I was okay.  We also laughed about how the tire could jump a four-foot high chain-link fence and not loose any momentum. 

                Otto arrived shortly thereafter and accessed the damage.  My rim was completely destroyed, the brake pads were chipped, two of the lug screws were broken clean off, my drum was cracked, and my brake piston was shot.  But they assured me that they could fix it if I could get it to their shop.  Thus, we took three lugs off the other side, and put on the spare tire, and I drove it to Otto's shop. 

The funny thing was that I was told later that a man came by right after it happened on a motorcycle and stole all of the lug nuts that had fallen, picking them up from off the road.  That was just too funny!  What would he want with my lug nuts?

                I left the vehicle at Otto's, and then returned to the Cancer Center.  I was told they'd try to have the vehicle fixed in a couple of days, but we shall see.

 

July 8th 2004 Thursday                                      Waiting

 

                I waited all day for them to call about my truck, but my patience was in vain.  When I finally did call them in the late afternoon, I was told that it was not yet finished, and that they would advise me when it was.

                Thus, I spent the day resting and reading at the Cancer Center.  It was good to actually have no place to be and nothing to do for once. 

                I also had to call Bro. Mike Lane and ask him to fill in for me in Quebrada de Lajas, as I would not be there in the evening.  He readily agreed to do so, and I went to bed early, happy that I didn't have to worry about my people not having someone to preach to them.

 

July 9th 2004 Friday                                           Still No Truck

 

                The motor vehicle wasn't finished today, so I spent most of my time reading my Bible.  In between my studies, I turned on the News channel CNN, which was a big mistake.  As one preacher says, "If you want to lose the joy of the Lord, just watch the news!"  This is very true.  All I saw was liberals glorifying sin (homosexuality, rock music, dirty movies, etc), and it made me sick. 

                Missionary Herbert Prince came to the Cancer Center in the afternoon, and we had some fellowship together.

 

July 10th 2004 Saturday                                    Resting, Prayer, and Enjoying Being Alone

 

                The truck was supposed to be finished today, but I was told that there was one part they still couldn't locate, and that since they closed at twelve today, they couldn't do anything else until Monday.  Thus, I found the Cancer Center to be my prison, and my lot was to wait there until Monday, whether I wanted to or not.

                I took advantage of my situation, however, and spent some time resting.  It was good to get out of the weekly rut I've found myself in, and to get away from everything for a while.  Sometimes it's just good to get away from everything and be alone with God!

                I remember that Jesus too at times would get alone (John 6:14).  When he did so it was usually to pray (Matt. 26:36-44).  And this is what I did much of today.  How great it is to get out of the bumps and grinds of the habituality of daily routine, and spend some time in fellowship with God!

 

July 11th 2004 Sunday                                       Visiting a New Church

 

                Bro. Prince asked me if I'd like to go to church with him tomorrow, and I said I would.  He takes the people from the Cancer Center every week to a Church called "El Cenáculo" (The Circular Shape), which is a beautiful building built in circular form like the Roman Coliseum.  They only have Sunday School in the morning, but I found their doctrine was very good.  The teacher taught from the book of Colossians about the "Fullness" and "Deity" of Christ.  As he was preaching, I ran across chapter two of the same book and verse nine, speaking about Jesus: "For in him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily."  And I thought to myself, "What a great verse to use against these 'Trinity denying' Jehovah Witnesses, who adamantly oppose the deity of Christ!"

                After services, we went back to the Cancer Center and I took a nap.  There's nothing as sweet and peaceful as a Sunday Afternoon nap!

                       

July 12th 2004 Monday                                       Finally I Get My Truck!

               

                Today was Anita's Birthday, and I was careful to leave her a card in the break room at the Cancer Center.  She received it with no little joy, and was thankful that I would be so thoughtful.

                In the afternoon, the people at the Cancer Center bought her a cake, and I was invited to light the candles.  This I did, and opened us in song with "Feliz Cumpleaños a Ti" (Happy Birthday to You).  Afterwards, my cell phone rang and I received the most wonderful news that my car was finally repaired.

                I took a taxi to the Nutek Systems shop, and found my truck in good working order.  It cost me a total of 3500 lempiras (almost 200 dollars).  After paying, I then drove back to the Cancer Center.  By this time it was late in the afternoon, so I decided I'd spend the night again at the Cancer Center and then leave tomorrow, so I wouldn't have to drive home in the dark.

 

July 13th 2004 Tuesday                                      My Not So Special Birthday

 

                I turned thirty years old today.  How quickly it snuck upon me.  It's hard to believe that I've now put my twenties behind me.  Anita left me a card on the break room table at the Cancer Center.  It said, "Happy Thirtieth Birthday!"  Inside she said jokingly that I was now "Middle Aged."  Although that's not the case, it set me to thinking.  If the Bible is right and man's average life span is seventy years of age, I have only five more years to go before I really do reach "Middle Age."  What a horrid thought!

                However, I plan not to be around until seventy.  For the way I figure it, reading my Bible, I now think that the Lord can't possibly tarry any longer than the year 2033 (That's counting two thousand years from Jesus' death, not his birth, for the church age as stated in Hosea 6:2, spiritualizing it with 2 Peter 3:8).  If that be the case (and only God knows for sure), and the Lord should come back in 2033, then I'd be only fifty nine when the Lord returns.  However, I hope he returns much, much sooner!

                I drove home in the morning after checking my Post Office Box in Tegucigalpa and visiting Pricesmart.  Upon my arrival in Comayagua, I stopped and ate a sandwich at Wendy's.  I found a new Mall close by, and stopped and bought myself some birthday attire (My only gift to myself).

                On the way home, I counted a total of six people peeing on the side of the road.  This was a new record for one day!  Oh how backwards are the Hondurans! 

                In the evening, no one came for Bible Study except Hotir and David.  Thus, I sent them home and spent the evening relaxing, reading in front of the fireplace, and enjoying peace and quiet in my own home after being away so long.

 

July 14th 2004 Wednesday                                Errands, Service, and Carlos

 

                Early this morning I awoke to study, pray, and prepare.  I have a long day ahead of me, and I have many things to do.  Thus, after breakfast, I drove into town to run my errands.  When I crossed the creek to the downtown proper, I stumbled upon my old friend Hernan Corrales.   He was going to the clinic up the road and invited me along.  I went and together we met the good Doctor there, as well as his friend Samuel Oyuela (who does the lab work).  I asked about the possibility of getting a blood test, and they told me to come back tomorrow morning at eight to do so. 

                They had a homemade ping-pong table with net there as well, and I was obliged to play a few games when invited.  I won three in a row, and was happy to leave on a winning streak.

                The rest of the day I spent buying stuff and paying bills.   In the evening, Carlos came over for some fellowship.  Together we walked to the Baptist Camp, and I led song leading.  Bro. Mike taught on the subject of "The Bible."  Afterwards, Carlos and I walked home through the cow field behind my house in the pouring rain.  When the rain stopped, Carlos went home.

 

July 15th 2004 Thursday                                   Bat Poop, Bloody Mouths, and Clean Houses

                       

                I asked Carlos to come and help me today do some work in Quebrada de Lajas.   He showed up at my house at seven thirty, and together we drove up to the Clinic for my appointment.  They took a small sample of my blood in a small syringe, and told me my results would be ready tomorrow.  Carlos waited in the car, and when I returned, he was reading his Bible.  That was a blessing to see.

                Afterwards, Carlos and I went out to buy some gas for the lawnmower, and then drove up the road to see Erick Sanchez.  Castillo said he came to the house almost every day last week looking for me.  Thus, I though it only proper to visit him and see what he wanted.  His only message was to tell me that there would be no Bible Institute Class this week.  That was a real blessing, as I'm already three weeks behind in my lessons.

                From there, Carlos and I drove out to "Bat Poop Baptist Church" (as the natives began calling it) and began working on cleaning the yard.  We mowed both the yard of the old building of Doña Mirsa (where we used to meet, and which had all the bats), as well as our new building.  Continually I had to stop my lawnmower and pick up rocks, bottles, bags, and other rubbish in both yards.   Hondurans are not too considerate when it comes to throwing trash everywhere.

                While working, Ovilio came looking for me, and asked me to take José Martír down the road to his mother's house and then bring her back, for there was a Dentist working in Martir's house, and she needed to have some work done on her bridge.  I readily agreed, and told him to have Martir come down when he was ready.  When he arrived, his cheeks were swollen, and he was spitting blood.  "What happened to you?" I asked him.  He replied in a garbled voice, "I just had five teeth pulled!"  Together we drove down the mountain to pick up his mother, while he was continually spitting blood out the passenger side window.

                After dropping Martir and his mother off at his house, I then looked for Carlos.  I found him working and singing hymns.  "He's got it!"  I thought to myself, "He surely is saved!"

                  We finished the outside of the two houses around noon, and then began working on the inside.  With gasoline, bleach, and "Pinesol," we scrubbed the floor of the old house, trying to remove all the bat feces.  It was a hard job, but eventually we succeeded.  After mopping the entire house, I then fumigated it with a water-based poison that is supposed to keep the bats from returning.  Then we locked the place up and left it to proceed to the other side of the road and clean our current church building for service.

                It is much smaller, thus we finished much quicker.  I swept and mopped and fumigated as well  (even though there are no bats there.  Better safe than sorry!).

                Afterwards, I went up to Ovilio's house to leave them their hand-help pump (of which I used to spray the poison), and I found Angelica in the same straight as Martir.  She too had a swollen jaw, and was spitting out blood.  When I asked of her situation, she replied that they had just pulled seven of her teeth at once.  Poor lady!

                After a quick bath under a water faucet, and putting on a clean shirt, it was time for service.  I drove down the hill to the Hernandez house where I taught about "The Judgment Seat of Christ."  Afterwards, I picked up my people and took them to service.  They were mostly children between the ages of five and fifteen.  I preached on "Gratitude" and what we ought to be thankful for.  At the invitation, I asked, "How does one get saved?"  Carlos quickly responded, "By faith in the blood of Jesus!"  (He's coming along well in his Christian development!)

                After taking everyone home, Carlos and I drove home exhausted.  Upon dropping him off at his house and paying him for his help, I then went home and plopped myself in bed completely drained from a long day of working.

 

Our Little Church Building in Quebrada de Lajas

 

July 16th 2004 Friday                                         Study

                       

                I stayed home all day and spent my time studying.  I finished one lesson for my Bible Institute course, and was glad to do so, however, I'm still two lessons behind.

                In the evening, only the Cordoba boys came for Bible Study.  I taught them about "Demons, Devils, Idols, and gods," from 1 Corinthians chapter eight.  I showed them how according to the Bible, every idol has a demon or devil behind it which is called a false "god" and when someone worships an idol, they are indeed worshipping nothing more than a demon.

 

July 17th 2004 Saturday                                    Errands, Rain, and Dinner

 

                Many errands had to be run today downtown.  First I went to the clinic for the results of my blood test.  They gave me my evaluation, and then explained it to me.  It appears that everything is normal, except for a high amount of Uric Acid. (Of the which I can expel by drinking a lot of water during the day).  I also don't have Malaria.

Afterwards, I went to the bank, the Post Office, the Internet Café, and more before returning home.  It was a long day running errands, but it was worth the effort.

We did not go on visitation in the afternoon, as a powerful Thunderstorm moved in upon us.  The rain fell with much ferocity, and lightening bolts struck at random.  Thus, we thought it better to stay home.

                Bro. Mike Lane and his wife invited me to dinner in the evening, and thankfully the rain subsided so that I could go.  We ate a good dinner of Hamburgers, and I had a good time of fellowship with him and his wife, as well as Bro. Rich Fisher and his wife.

 

July 18th 2004 Sunday                                       Ovilio, Kenia, and Sabino

 

                I journeyed out to Quebrada de Lajas for services in the afternoon.  On the way I met Blanca and stopped to speak with her.  She was in town to buy some things.  Afterwards, I drove up to Ovilio and Angelica's house.  We talked for a while, and Ovilio showed me his new pistol – a .38 Smith and Wesson, of which he was very proud.  I also witnessed to him, and showed him his need to be born again, but he put salvation off until another day.  At least he was honest about it though, by saying, "I'm just not ready yet, but I'll let you know when I am."

                I took his kids with me to do some visitation.  We visited several houses and it was a shame to see so many families that had drunk fathers.  Adrian was so drunk that he couldn't talk.  He just shook his head and frowned, and wouldn't even look me in the eyes.  On the way to the Hernandez house, we saw another drunk lying on the side of the road.  The children yelled to him, "Adios bolo!" (Goodbye Drunk Man) as we drove by, to the which he sluggishly replied, "Adios Buenos" (Goodbye Good People).   

                Then I told the children that people like that need to be saved.  Kenia then quickly replied, "I got saved on June 10th after you finished preaching.  I wrote it down in my Bible as that was the day when I trusted the blood of Jesus Christ to save my soul!"  That was a blessing to hear.

                At the Hernandez house, I preached a message entitled "Juan Sin Miedo" (Fearless John), about John the Baptist.  My points were that he wasn't afraid to 1. Predicar Arrepentimiento (Preach Repentance) in Matthew 3:2, 2. Redargüir (Rebuke) others of their sin in Matthew 14:3-11, 3. Reconocer Quien Es El Señor (Recognize Who the Lord Is) in Juan 1:29,36, and finally 4. Rendir Su Vida Para El Señor (Surrender His Life for God) from Mark 6:20-28.

                After service, I took the children home, and then drove out to the Baptist Camp for services.  I was asked to lead several congregational hymns, and we bellowed forth in the beautiful Spanish tongue "Lilly of the Valley," "He Arose," "At Calvary," and many other well-known hymns.  A young man from the church in Sapatillo was there for services and he gave his testimony.  His name was Sabino. 

                Bro. Mike Lane preached from 1 Chronicles chapter four and verse ten about the prayer of Jabez. 

 

July 19th 2004 Monday                                       King Solomon

 

                I did nothing special today except rest and take it easy.  I also spent some time reading my Bible, and happened upon something interesting.  In First Kings, I found King Solomon to be a wise man.  This wisdom was bestowed upon him from God (1 Kings 3:7-12) of which he was careful to ask for.  The Bible then tells us that he is the wisest man that every lived.  Yet, I found that one of the first things he did when he became King was make an affinity with Pharaoh, King of Egypt (Egypt being a type of the world in the Bible), and then married his daughter.  Could it be that a wise man can still be a carnal, worldly man?  I can only assume it possible, as Solomon was most certainly worldy and carnal (as he had a thousand women).  Because of his worldliness, this lead to his carnality (as the world is a very carnal place), and eventually in spite of his wisdom, his worldly wives turned away his heart (1 King 11:3).  How sad.

                From this I took counsel and determined even the more that I would make sure I do not marry a worldly woman, who cares only about the things of this world.  For a bad woman can really destroy a man of God, and set him on a downhill path the wrong way (as the life of Solomon shows)!

                Sabino came by in the afternoon asking for some Bibles, Tracts, and Gospel Literature to pass out in his hometown.  I gladly loaded him up with New Testaments, whole Bibles, and tracts.

 

July 20th 2004 Tuesday                                      Sweeping, Sweeney, and Tania Estefani

 

                After breakfast this morning, I began house cleaning.  This turned into a colossus task, as I had to sweep the floors, mop them, and then begin putting things that I'd left out in their proper place.  The only problem was that I have so many new things, that not everything has its own "proper place!"  Thus, I had to arrange and rearrange my living quarters to accommodate my many goods.

                While working, Bro. Thomas Sweeney contacted me and asked me to make my way to his house to convey some boards, which he wished to donate to my ministry to make benches for our little church building in Quebrada de Lajas.  I quickly drove up to his house to load the nice twelve-foot pine planks into my car.  Julio's son Alex helped me, and together we carried them into my garage.  Tom's only stipulation was that I make him two benches from the wood, which I shall be more than happy to do.

                In the afternoon, Tania Estefani (the young lady I had so much trouble with when I had Children's services here at my house on Saturdays) came by with several of her brothers and sisters.  She acted shy (which is not her usual demeanor), and wouldn't talk with me at first.  However, she eventually opened up and said that she wasn't going to her church anymore (the Santidad Church up the street), as people there were talking bad about her.  Then she began crying.  I could tell she was hurting, so I sat her down and told her about Elijah and the 450 prophets of Baal, and how after getting the victory against them, he ran from Jezebel afraid for his life.  I continued by showing her that God still cared for Elijah, even though Jezebel had said bad things about him, and desired to show Himself to him.  I finished by saying that it doesn't matter what others think or say about you, but it does matter what God thinks of us, and we should put him first, as he will bless us for so doing.   I also invited her to services at the Baptist Camp, as well as stressed to her the need to trust the blood of Jesus Christ to save her soul!

                No one came for Bible Study in the evening except Hotir, Lindsay, and David.  We waited for others to show up, but all was for naught as they were desirous to be absent.  Thus, we played a few games of Chess, and then they went home.

 

July 21st 2004 Wednesday                                What Makes A Boy A Man?

 

                There are some who say, "It's not how old you are, but how old you feel."  I know not if this be so.  However, since turning thirty I am beginning to feel different.  I actually feel like a man.  I am most certainly no longer a kid, nor am I a giddy teenager.  When I look in the mirror, I no longer see a skinny, insecure, bashful, indecisive youngster, but rather a robust, ruddy, self-composed man, who is no longer dependent upon others, and can make his own decisions.  I guess I'm finally a man.

                Thinking upon this, the question sprang forth, "At what age does a boy become a man?"  An Aristotle-like discussion then arose in my mind, and I began to debate the subject within myself like so, "The ungodly world thinks that a boy becomes a man after his first sexual conquest (which God calls fornication, whoredom, and wickedness).  The government counts a boy a man when he turns 18 years of age (albeit I've found many of that age who are childish, foolish, and ignorant).  Culture claims a boy a man when he is 'cultured' to the extent of being able to carry on reason, rationality, and discipline on his own with no further need of parental guidance and supervision.  But I've seen many "gentlemen" who were not very manly in their ways or deeds, but rather effeminate, enervate (lacking nerve), and uncourageous.  Others count a boy a man when he reaches the peak of pure meanness, and is therefore heartless, bitter, macho, and fearless.  But this is not the measure of a man, rather those uncomely characteristics of the worst of men.  Others make the distinction of boyhood and manhood when one is married, but this shall most certainly not do, for one can be a man, and still be single."

                Thus, I continued to pine away at the question without a definite answer.  I turned to the Bible for help, and found that though it told me what a man is, it didn't show me when exactly one becomes a man.  Thus I determined that it's different for each male.  It's not an overnight occurrence, in which a boy goes to sleep in the evening, and then awakes a man in the morning.  It is a slow gradual process, almost unable to be seen, in which a boy slowly grows into manhood. 

That it has nothing to do with age, I am sure.  Rather I believe it has to do with responsibility.  When a boy takes on responsibilities, which he before could otherwise not do, then he becomes (or maybe starts to become) a man.

At any rate, I know I am indeed a man, and am thankful that God made me so.  But it seems the older that I grow, I find that the more I can actually feel that I am so.

                In the evening, after church service at the Baptist Camp, I finally finished my "Teaching Company" College Courses.  In total I've taken twelve classes with professors from many different renowned secular universities in the United States; the titles of which include: Classical Mythology, Old Testament Survey, New Testament Survey, Lost Christianities: Christian Scriptures and the Battles of Authentication, Philosophy of Religion, Argumentation, History of Egypt, Great Ancient Civilizations of Asia Minor, Ancient History of Rome, The History of England from the Tudors to the Stuarts, The History of the English Language, and How to Listen to and Understand Great Music.

 

July 22nd 2004 Thursday                                   Converts, Concerts, and Covering

 

                Spending time in study and prayer in the morning hours, the Lord graced me with his presence, and I received three messages from the Lord to preach in Spanish.   How great it is to get a message together, but even better still to know that it's exactly what God wants you to preach, and to know that he gave it to you!

                By mid-afternoon, I finished my studying and prepared to leave for Quebrada de Lajas.  Hotir asked to come along with me, and I happily accepted his offer.  Together we journeyed into town where I first checked my email, and ran a few errands.  Afterwards, we drove to Quebrada de Lajas and visited with the people.  We were received with no little kindness, and enjoyed several cups of coffee from various Indian homes.

                Martír was home and in pain again, as they pulled another five of his teeth.  He said, "All my teeth are bad, and they'll have to pull them all out eventually!"  How sad this is to hear, and even worse to know that it's because he (as most Hondurans) doesn't brush his teeth.

So backwards are the Honduran people, that they know not how to cure themselves after such a trauma. He was using regular Isopropyl Rubbing Alcohol as mouthwash.  I quickly reproved him, and stressed that he need rather to use water with salt in it, as the alcohol would do him more harm than good (as it's absorbed into the bloodstream through his gums).

                His sister Angelica also was in pain as well, as she had more teeth pulled today also.  This time they pulled four, making it a grand total of eleven that they've removed within a week's time.  I jokingly said, "Martír, your sister is beating you!  You need to get another tooth pulled, so she doesn't win!" 

                At five, I drove to the Hernandez house and held services there.  I preached one of the messages the Lord gave me today entitled, "¿Dónde Aparecerá El Pecador? (Where Shall the Sinner Appear?).  My points were that 1. "Todos Los Pecadores Irán al Cemeterio" (All Sinners will End Up at the Cemetery).  2.  "Los Pecadores Perdidos Irán Al Fuego Consumador" (All Lost Sinners Will Go to a Consuming Fire).  And 3. "Los Pecadors Salvos Irán Al Cielo" (All Saved Sinners Will Go to Heaven).

                After service, I asked if all were saved, and only one said she wasn't (a young girl).  Belkis was there as well, and he wasn't saved the last that I knew.  I questioned him if he were saved or not, and he replied, "Last Thursday I accepted Jesus Christ as my Saviour after you finished preaching!"  That was great to hear!

                Up the street in our new building, I preached on "¿Estás Cubierto?" (Are You Covered?)  I showed them how most sinners try to 1. "Cubrir sus Pecados" (Cover their sins) as it says in Proverbs 28:13.  I then showed them that Satan desires to 2. "Cubrir la Verdad de La Palabra" (Cover the Truth of the word) by trying to blind the eyes of those that aren't saved, as it states in 2 Corinthians 4:3-4.  And finally, and most importantly, I showed them that God wants to "Cubrirte en La Sangre Preciosa" (Cover You in the Precious Blood."  I explained that if they tried to cover their sins, God would still see them, and that Satan wishes to cover their eyes to the plain Gospel truth that only Jesus Christ's shed blood can cover one's sins and wash them away!

                After service, Hotir and I journeyed up to the Escuela Normal Mixta (A Secular School) here in La Esperanza to attend a Classical Music Concert, of which Hotir told me about.  We arrived thirty minutes late for the opening, and found ourselves, along with a big group of people, locked outside.  The gate was fastened with a lock, and no one was allowed to enter.  Thus, we sat outside and enjoyed the wonderful music of Bach's Brandenburg Concierto, which echoed forth from the large concrete block auditorium.  At the intermission, they opened the gates and let us enter to listen to them play several other of Bach's better-known Sonatas. 

                I was surprised to find only 14 people in all playing in the Concert.  From the beauty of the music that we heard while standing outside, I expected an entire symphony.  But alas, it was only a small group of performers.  They were German in origin (from Leipzig), and were in La Esperanza only for one night to bring some "culture" to the small town.  The sign behind them said, "Conjunto Bach," or "Bach Get-Together," and they only played music by Mr. Johann Sebastian Bach himself.

                Although I thoroughly enjoyed the music, it seemed the rest of the people did not.  As I looked around me, most of them were whispering, looking around, reading, joking, or doing something else.  I guess Hondurans don't appreciate good Classical music.

 

July 23rd 2004 Friday                         Spanish, Soccer, and Bible Study   

 

                Sometimes it's hard to get up in the morning.  This is one of those days.  I stayed in bed as long as I could, enjoying the warm comfort of the sheets and covers.

                When I finally did awake, I had breakfast and did my daily reading.  Afterwards, Ms. Lucia Martinez and her brother Santos showed up in the yard, and Rambo was faithful in announcing their coming.  They came to ask me some questions about their English homework, and I was quick to help them.  Together we sat on the back porch, and I studied with them, translating sentences from Spanish to English.  Lucia did not have a Spanish-English Dictionary, so I gave her one of mine.  She was very grateful.

                The rest of the day I spent working on my material for the Bible Institute.  I also studied for our Bible Study in the evening on 1 Corinthians.  However, I was interrupted by some of the neighborhood kids, who came by to visit with me.  We talked for a while, and I hugged them and played with them. We also walked out to my garden and pulled a few cucumbers and ate them.  They asked to play Soccer, so I obliged, and even entered the game myself.

                Only the Cordoba Clan came for Bible Study, and I taught them from 1 Corinthians chapter nine.

 

July 24th 2004 Saturday                                    Bible Institute, Visitation, and Flowers

 

                Early this morning I awoke for a shower.  When I went outside to turn on the water pump, I found Castillo had broken the PVC pipe that goes to the water hose.  He fixed it in Honduran style by sticking a piece of wood in it with a plastic bag over the stick.  It worked, and kept the water from squirting out.  As I turned to enter the house to bathe, Bani showed up and asked if he could mow the yard.  I told him he could, and put him to work.  He only asks for eight lempiras an hour, which is about fifty cents in American dollars.  Because this is such a small amount, I usually give him a good tip when he finishes.

                After a shave and a shower, I was off to the Lenca Bible Institute to teach my class about the History of the Church.  My subject today was the death of the apostles, and I was careful to show them from the Bible, and from Foxe's Book of Martyr's, how they died and for what cause (mostly for preaching against Paganism). 

                At two-thirty, Alex, Victor and Lindsey came with me on visitation, and we visited several homes way up in the mountains that we'd never been to before.  The people were very friendly, and even though they were Catholic, they showed us no little kindness.  At one home, we were given some Pears, which were very good.

                After visitation, the boys helped me with my gardening.  We pulled many flowers from out of my flowerbed, as they are too tall, and block the other flowers from getting the necessary sun they need to grow.  Most of the flowers we took out still had the roots on them, so I visited the neighbors and invited them to come over and take them home with them and plant them.  This they gladly did.

                       

July 25th 2004 Sunday                                       Sunday Services

               

                I spent most of the morning studying and copying sermons into my Sermon Notebook.  Afterwards, I had several neighbors come by and visit, and I entertained them.  One of which was Bro. Mike Lane, who said he was going to Utila today, and he asked me if I would lead the services.  He asked Bro. Ramón Galeano to preach, so I will only have to take up the offering, lead singing, and then introduce him.

                At one o'clock, I left for Quebrada de Lajas with Bani Cordoba.  We visited many different houses there and invited people to service.  I also found Catalino drunk again at the Hernandez house.  I witnessed to him some more, and asked him why he didn't want to get saved.  His answer is still the same, "I have too many vices, and I'm not ready to give them up!"

                At three, we had a small crowd at first, but then eventually people began to show up.  I was excited to see many visitors.  Catalino came, as well as Eddie (who is also lost).  I preached a message entitled, "Lo Que Cada Pecador Necesita" (What Every Sinner Needs).  My points were 1. Amor (Love), and I showed them that they must see the love of Christ Jesus for them in going to the cross to die for their sins.  2.  Arrepentirse (Repentance).  I then explained to them that to repent means to feel sorry for one's sins, and to turn from trusting their own filthy righteousness, to confiding in the pure righteousness of God.  3.  Aceptar Al Señor (Accept the Lord).  I then showed them that Jesus said they "must be born again" (John 3:7), and they must accept him by faith in his precious blood.  Finally, I closed with point 4. Asear Su Vida (Clean Up His Life).  And I showed them that when a sinner comes to Christ, he ought to clean up his act, live holy, righteous and just, and serve God rather that serving the flesh!

                After service, I dropped everyone off at their house, and then drove to the Baptist Camp.  We started on time and sang many hymns waiting for those "sluggish Christians" who are accustomed to coming in late.  However, most of them did not arrive, so I turned the service over to Mr. Ramón Galeano.  He preached a message on "What Makes a Man."  It wasn't bad, as he pointed out that a real man is one that admits when he makes a mistake, is strong enough to resist temptation, and will perform his duties faithfully.

 

July 26th 2004 Monday                                       Pondering How Many Have Been Saved

 

                I printed up my old Prayerletters last night and then went through and read them today.  I was surprised to see how God has used me to win souls and glorify his name.  I had almost forgotten what I've been through, and it was good to relive the past and rejoice in what God's done with me.

                As I was reading, I decided to write down all the people I won to the Lord, how many were saved under my ministry, and how many I've seen saved since starting deputation in December of 1998.  I'm not much on numbers, as it's easy to glorify one's self and brag about what they've done.  So, I want to be careful to give God the glory, as he's the one that saves them.

                My findings tallied up like so:  The souls that I've personally won to the Lord from 1999-2004 were sixty-three people!  The souls that were saved under my ministry (after my preaching, or from giving out tracts, Bibles, etc.) were 29.  The souls I've seen saved as I traveled and visited other ministries were 25.  Thus, I've seen over 100 people saved in the last six years!  What a blessing!

                That doesn't include those saved since I trusted Jesus Christ's precious blood to save my own soul in 1992 until the day I graduated Bible Institute in 1998.  That would be another four people at the least that I've won personally to the Lord (that I can remember), and another hundred at the least that I've seen saved in other ministries such as Street Preaching, Church Services, Revivals, Visitation, and more. 

                I'm looking forward to seeing all those people in heaven one day!  How great it will be to rejoice with them around the pearly white throne and thank God for his saving grace and mercy!

                I don't count myself a great "soul winner," nor do I ask for, deserve, or desire any praise or recognition.  If the truth be known, I look at myself as a good for nothing reprobate that ought to be in Hell for his wicked ungodly sins!  Thus, even the more I desire to praise and glorify the Lord Jesus Christ for using an old nobody like me to have touched the lives of so many others.  And how great it has been to see others saved as well through other ministries!  To God be the Glory!!!

 

July 27th 2004 Tuesday                                      Blood Test, Forward Women and Catholic Priests

 

                At eight this morning, I drove up to the clinic that did my blood test to have yet more sanguine liquid drawn from my body.  This time it was to find out what type of blood I have.  Samuel Oyuela pricked my finger, and then put several drops of my blood on a glass slide.  Afterwards, he went to do the test.  I asked if I could watch, and the nurse was kind enough to allow me to go into his "laboratory."  It was anything but sanitary.  It was an old room on the back of the clinic, which I would have called a "wash room," as it had a large fiberglass sink in one corner.  The paint was chipping off the walls, his test tubes and utensils were scattered all over a dusty Formica table, and the floor was a very dirty ceramic tile. 

I watched Mr. Oyuela use several toothpicks to mix my blood with different solutions to find out what my blood type was.  After mixing each solution, he would put the toothpicks on an old, black, rotten piece of wood that sat over the sink.  I thought to myself, "This is a very unsanitary place!"

Eventually one of the small pools of blood began to change to an almost clear color.  Mr. Oyuela then said, "That shows your blood type to be A positive."  He told me that was his blood type as well, and that if I ever needed blood, he would be happy to donate it to me.  I said "Thank You," but inside I was thinking, "If you keep your body as clean as this lab room, I don't want any of your blood!!!"

After checking my email, I saw the local catholic priest standing in the town square talking with some people.  He was wearing a long black robe, which looked like a dress, and I immediately remembered the words of Christ Jesus in Luke 20:46,47, when he said, "Beware of the scribes, which desire to walk in long robes, and love greetings in the markets, and the highest seats in the synagogues, and the chief rooms at feasts; which devour widows' houses, and for a show make long prayers: the same shall receive greater damnation."  There is something wrong with a man who wears a dress, and then asks others to call him "father!"

Around the corner, the lady at the Megatel office (where I buy my phone cards) saw me and asked me to stop.  I did and she walked up to the car and began talking with me.  She said, "I would like to know what your phone number is!"  I asked her why she needed it, and she responded, "My cousin would like to be your friend!"  I replied quickly, "But I already have enough friends!" 

She then said that her "cousin" (which I think was really her) said she wanted to call me and be my friend.  I then responded that I already have a girlfriend, and that it wouldn't be proper to be friends with her cousin, as people would take it the wrong way.  She then proceeded to ask me for it anyway, as her "cousin" wanted to just be "friends" not like "Boyfriend/Girlfriend" but just friends.  I politely declined in giving away my phone number, discerning her intentions to be dishonorable, and I told her the reason being was that I was a proper gentleman, and am faithful to one girl only, and to be "friends" with someone of the opposite sex would not be a good thing, as it would appear to others to be something more.  She could not understand this, but I was not born yesterday.  I don't give my phone number out to just anyone.

As I drove away, the verse came to my mind, "Flee Fornication," thus I stepped on the gas and got out of there as quickly as I could go!

At ten o'clock, I took the wooden boards that Thomas Sweeney gave me to the Baptist Camp and asked Rich Fischer if he could help me make benches out of them.  He said he would, and together we worked on cutting the benches, the legs, and braces.  We made two benches for Thomas Sweeney, and assembled them.  With the leftover wood, I had enough components to make four benches, each nine feet long.  I left them unassembled, and plan to put them together when I go to Quebrada de Lajas.

In the evening, no one came for service except Carlos Pineda.  A huge Thunderstorm blew in behind him, and we sat and waited to see if anyone would show up.  No one did, so I drove Carlos home in the rain.

 

July 28th 2004 Wednesday                                Inspiration and Preservation

 

Last night my eyes were very dry and itchy.  After having Lasik eye surgery back in November of 2000, they told me that this would happen at times, and to add drops of "Artificial Tears" to my eyes for lubrication.  However, I found that this only makes them drier when the liquid is absorbed.  Thus, I did something different.  I took some Vitamin E gel tablets, and broke them open and put them into my eyes before bed.  I couldn't see well at first after doing so, and all was hazy.  Thus, I just closed my eyes and fell asleep.  When I awoke this morning, the dryness and itching had gone away, and my eyes felt much, much better.

Most of the day today I spent studying.  I also finally finished translating my "Book of Study Notes" into Spanish.  However, it lacks being checked by someone who speaks Spanish much better than I, and corrected.

                In the evening, I taught at the Baptist Camp.  Bro. Mike Lane is still on vacation in Utila, and asked me to teach in his place.  We had a small crowd, because of the nightly rain, but I enjoyed teaching them anyway.  I taught on "Inspiration and Preservation."  I showed them something that God showed me, how that each of these were done the same way.  All scripture is given by "inspiration" (2 Tim. 3:16).  But the words of God weren't just inspired, God inspired men to speak them (2 Peter 2:21), and then they were written down. 

                When it comes to "preservation," God preserved his words by copyists, who copied God's words.  Eventually there were many copies, each testifying what the true words of God were when they were first written down.  Thus, both Inspiration and Preservation have to do with the "writing down of God's words." 

                After service, I drove everyone home in the rain, being careful to drop them off as close to their front door as possible, so they wouldn't get too wet.

                Before bed I continued reading from Plato's "The Republic."  It wasn't a complete waste of time, as there was some very interesting commentary about "Politics" and governmental world systems towards the end of the book.   According to Plato, there are four main types of government, and each one is a degeneration of the other, until the ultimate end, which is "armed rebellion" and complete distrust of government.  His four main types of rule were Timarchy, Oligarchy, Democracy, and Tyranny. 

By Timarchy he means that of the ancient Spartan state, which to me would be nothing more than modern day Communism (Of which he thought of as the "ideal" state).   By Oligarchy, he explains it as a political system of what to me seems the "middle class" or as the English called them "Gentlemen class," of which one finds the rich, the poor, and then those in between, who don't work, but learn to live off the government or off others. 

Next he explains Democracy as the people getting fed up with the rule of the state, and trying to take the control of governing into their own hands.  This then makes them, rather than the law, the final authority, and as "might makes right," rule shall be determined upon the "opinion" of the majority, rather than the actual laws on the books.  Eventually, the people will decide that since they have the power of government, (and since power is money and money is power), that they should vote to give themselves a free handout, and monetary gains.  This eventually leads to the destruction of the government and the last and final system of rule arises from its burning ashes.  This of course would be "Tyranny" in which one man seizes power after the vacuum left of a crippled and crumbling political relic, which no longer works or can work.  Thus, one man takes over and rules over everyone himself.  The people emphatically welcome him with open arms, after order has been destroyed by mass hysteria, panic, and the complete anarchy of ruling mobs, which have no respect for laws, but rather what they can get for themselves.

                Interestingly enough, Plato's words are quite prophetic.  For in the Bible, the church was a "Timarchial" society, in which men had "all things common" (See Acts 4:32 of which Karl Marx used to base his political system).  Eventually, another class of people entered the picture, those of the "Nicolaity" (Nicolaitanes of Rev. 2:6) who desired their "rights."  These then tried to get what they could from the church and the government.  This eventually led to a democracy (what America is said to be today, although it was founded a Republic), and as history proves, all democracies eventually fail.  As Alexander Tyler (A Scottish History Professor at the University of Edinburgh) said in about the year 1787, "A democracy is always temporary in nature; it simply cannot exist as a permanent form of government."  This being the case, America and the United Nations (democratic in nature) will eventually crumble, and the whole world will look towards one man as their Deliverer - a "Tyrant," whom the Bible calls "The Anti-christ."  But praise be to God, he will soon be knocked out of office (Ps. 109:8) in an armed revolt by none other than the Lord Jesus Christ, who will finally take control of the whole God-awful mess of "Politics" and rule and reign in His kingdom (which He deserves) for a thousand years!  And finally, there will be "justice" (what old Aristotle was trying to find and define) as God (what Plato couldn't realize as truly "The Good") will be in charge of everything!

 

July 29th 2004 Thursday                                   Spiritual Birthday, Apostasy, and Frustration

 

                I turned twelve spiritually today.  It's hard to believe that it's been that long since I've trusted the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ to save my never dying soul.  How much has happened in that time, and how many places the preaching of the Gospel has taken me.  It's been a wonderful ride, and I wouldn't trade it for the world!

                Around noon, I took off for Quebrada de Lajas.  My car was full of the wooden planks to make church benches with, and the first thing I did was begin working on assembling them in our little church meeting place.  The planks were nine feet long, and I soon learned that they were too long for only two supports at each end of the bench.  Thus, I put another support in the middle (taking them from what I had for the other benches).  This made them much stronger, and kept the board from sagging in the middle.  However, I was left without three more supporting boards, which I'll have to make another day and take out there with me to install.

                As I was working, young Tania (Ovilio's four year old daughter) kept asking me where we were going to have service.  I kept telling her in Spanish "En la misma casa que antes" (In the same house as before).  She misunderstood, and thought I said "Misa" (Mass) instead of "Misma" (same).  This led to a very funny situation in which she kept asking all day, "Are we going to have the Mass during service?"  I constantly corrected her, and told her no! 

                A heavy thunderstorm fell in the afternoon, and mud was everywhere.  It was quite ridiculous as rivers of water flew down the road at an ever-increasing pace.  And to walk on the ground, one would pick up so much mud, that it'd stick three inches thick to the bottom of his shoes.  I decided I would not go to the Hernandez house, as the road would be too muddy for me to pass, so I just sat at Martir's house and waited until six o'clock service.

                Unfortunately, only children came to service, and they were anything but well behaved.  They laughed, joked, talked, fought with each other, and made faces while I preached to them.  I could tell that most of them weren't listening, and I almost felt like giving up, and not preaching.  But I did.  Rather than preach what I had prepared, I taught them about "False Prophets" from 2 Peter chapter two, and about the false gospel from Galatians chapter one.  Some of them listened, but the majority of them had not the attention span to follow me for very long.

                As I was driving home (trying to keep from slipping and sliding on the muddy roads), I came upon a yellow school bus blocking the road by the fairgrounds close to my house, and I was unable to pass.  It said, "Asemblea de Dios" on the side of it (Assembly of God).  I also noticed many other cars lined up on both sides of the road as well.  As I went around the block to pass the bus and go home, I spied a huge tent full of people.  On the stage were several boys singing "Rap" music.  They were dressed like your typical ungodly, pagan, reprobate rock singer, and were pulsating to a jungle beat while singing about "Jesus" (Which Jesus I don't know.  See 2 Cor. 11:4 for further particulars.).  Rap music and true Christianity go together about like water and gasoline, or oil and blood, or grape juice and cottage cheese, or pickle juice and milk, etc.

                At any rate, they had a huge crowd under the tent, and many people even standing outside swaying and clapping their hands to the music, as well as raising their hands and snapping their fingers.  How carnal and how worldly was this farce of a display of a so-called "Christian" Concert.

                As I drove on, I grew very irate.  My blood began to boil, and my face turned red as I thought about how many people are drawn to such a fleshly spectacle, thinking it is truly "Christian."  The following words ran through my mind as I thought about it: "The world wants just enough "church" to appease their conscience, and just enough of the world to please the flesh!"

                The more I pondered, the more angry I became thinking, "How can all those people go there, where there is nothing spiritual and there is no doctrine whatsoever, to hear a bunch of carnal hoodlums imitate the sounds of the world?  How can they who have no truth get all the crowds, and here I am with the truth, and all I can get is a couple of rowdy kids who usually don't even listen anyway?"  The more I thought about it, the more frustrated I became.

                We are truly in the age of "Laodicea" or the time of Apostasy.  No wonder God said that it made him so sick that he wanted to "spue" them "out of his mouth."  It's sickening to see churches trying to reach people in carnal ways.  And rather than convert souls, all they do is make "carnal" religious people who are anxious for more of the world. 

                As I thought on these things, I began to think about how I want to reach more people with the truth, and how I feel I've gotten a bum rap here where I am now, as I'm not able to reach very many.  I struggle with the desire to be an evangelist and travel all over the world to preach, thus being able to reach more people with the truth.  I don't think a person deserves to hear the Gospel more than once or twice, and if they reject it, it's on their head.  But here, I've told the Gospel to these Indians time and again, and they stubbornly refuse to trust Christ as their Saviour (with the exception of a very few that have gotten saved.)  I feel as though my ministry is so small, and I'm doing so little that's worthwhile.  I just want to reach more.

                Ever since starting in the ministry, my father told me that it's obvious what God's called me to do.  That is to travel and preach as a traveling evangelist.  This I did on deputation, and God blessed.  I'm seeing that I've had some (although not much) opportunities to travel here as well, and God has blessed that too.  Thus, I'm struggling with whether or not I should continue on here in Honduras, or leave and become a traveling evangelist.

                To add to my inner conflict, the Lord keeps giving me the verse in 2 Tim. 4:5, which states, "But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry."  How I desire to travel, how I desire to reach more people with the truth, how I desire to help others.

                It seems to me, the older I get, the more I see that there are less people starting churches, and more churches are folding, or going under, as they continue on in apostasy.  Many of the "Missionaries" sent out today don't know much Bible, and aren't sound in their doctrine, thus they aren't reaching their full potential, and doing the work of the Lord correctly.  How my heart bleeds for them, and how I'd like to reach them, and get them straightened out so that they can do the job right the first time!

                As to myself, I see that I'm not good at pastoring a Church.  I'm just not patient enough.  I want people to get right and do right now!!!  And it's hard to be "longsuffering" (2 Tim. 4:2) with them.  I know others can do a much better job than I can, and my desire is to just travel, preach, and teach others how to live right, preach right, and if need be, die right!

                Maybe God will give me that chance, but until he tells me to go into the work of an evangelist and leave Honduras, I'll continue on faithfully here.  I look at this as a learning experience, and a training ground that will undoubtedly help me in the future to serve the Lord in whatsoever capacity he would put me in.

 

July 30th 2004 Friday                         English, Bible Study, and a Storm

 

                I spent most of my day working outside.  I installed new mud flaps on my truck, as well as giving it a tune-up.  While I was working, Ms. Gloria Martinez came to the house with her younger cousin asking me to help her with her "English" homework.  I was happy to do so.  She said she'd bring me some peaches one day for my trouble.  I shall look forward to them.

                Afterwards, I spent some time moving all my tools out of the "Tool shed" to clean the mildew off the walls that had grown there.  When it was empty, I scrubbed the entire inside (walls, floors, and ceiling) with bleach to remove the awful smell.  This seemed to work, but it didn't help my black clothes, which turned to a strange reddish-brown color afterwards.

                Carlos showed up with his cousin before I finished, and I asked them to wait while I took a shower.  Afterwards, we ate together, and then prepared for evening services.

                I was delighted to see several visitors come for our Bible Study.  One was named Asucena, and she came with Maria (the pregnant girl).  Beside the Cordoba Clan, several other people showed up as well.

                I taught from chapter ten of 1 Corinthians, and we learned about Moses and the Children of Israel, and their exodus from Egypt, their rebellion in the desert, and what they had to pay for it.  We also saw Christ in type as the "Rock," that Moses smote, as well as the serpent on a pole.

                A heavy thunderstorm rolled in towards the late evening hours, and I fell asleep to the soothing sound of thunder and rain.

 

July 31st 2004 Saturday                                     Bible Institute Class, Chess, and Corrections

 

                Bible Institute went well this morning.  I taught on the seven churches in Revelation chapters two and three, and showed how they are not only seven different churches that existed in the time of the apostle John, but also could be spiritually applied to the thousand years of Church History as different consecutive time periods. 

                My students listened well, and we finished our lesson quickly (about half an hour early).  Afterwards, they asked me many questions, and I answered them the best I could.  I then preceded "preaching," and began to wail against the "carnality" of our day.  I told them, "In the first church period, or when the church began, they were willing to die for Jesus Christ, but now we have people that call themselves 'Christians" in the Laodicean church age, which won't even live for Him!!!"

                After class, I went home and began preparing for my trip to Tegucigalpa on Monday.  Alex came by at three o'clock for visitation, but we were rained out, as a heavy storm rolled on top of us before we were able to go.  Thus, we sat at home and played a game of Chess.  I won three games in a row!

                Bani came by in the evening, and helped me with my "Book of Study Notes," which I recently translated into Spanish.  I asked him a few days ago to go through it and make any necessary corrections.  He did so, and together we revised them.  Afterwards, we played a few games of Chess, and I won them both!  (I am the Chess Champion of the Hour!!!)

                The rest of the evening I was up until two in the morning working on correcting my "Book of Study Notes" in Spanish on my computer, as well as working on my prayer letters, and a few other things.

 

August 1st 2004 Sunday                                     Dinner on the Grounds!

 

                Many of the children who came on Thursday night to Quebrada de Lajas asked me to bring some chicken to our church meetinghouse, so we could cook it and have "dinner on the grounds."  They all volunteered to bring something themselves, and decided that I should arrive at the noon hour with the meat, while they would bring everything else.  I brought Bani with me, and when we arrived, we found them happily waiting for us. 

                It was all children from ages four to thirteen.  I was amazed to see them work so well together in the kitchen.  Kenia (age 10) took the lead and most people followed her as she cooked chicken and rice with beans.  I left them to work, and I went visiting for an hour or so.  Upon my return with the Hernandez kids, I found lunch almost ready.  All total there were over fifteen children.  We sat out on the front porch and ate a good meal of chicken, beans, rice, and tortillas, along with a cup of Honduran style coffee.

                It was wonderful to see us all working together and having fellowship.  For once they didn't seem like children, but rather miniature adults, as they were actually very well behaved, and considerate.  The young ladies brought out the food, and the young men did the heavy labor.  I thought to myself, "This is great!  The girls are learning how to be women, and the men are learning how to be gentlemen!"

                Eventually, Adrian showed up drunk.  I stopped him and offered him some food, but he replied, "I can't eat with you all!  I'm not a Christian, and I'm not able to eat with such good people!"  I told him he was always welcome, and it wouldn't be a sin to eat with us.  He rejected our offer, and went on his way.

                Jesus (Catalino's brother) rode by on a bicycle a little while later.  I yelled to him, "Hello Jesus!"  Unfortunately, he was drunk as well, and when he turned to see who was calling his name, he took a nasty spill on the muddy, pothole filled road.  When he picked himself up and cleaned himself off, I noticed he was bleeding.  I asked him how it happened, and he said he had fallen a few miles down the road as well, and that he was going home to get cleaned up.  The poor guy had mud all over his clothes and looked awful!  I told him we loved him, were praying for him, and wanted to see him get right with God, and then sent him on his way, watching him stumble off into the distance pushing his bicycle along side him.

                Jose and Blanca showed up a little while later, and we started service.  I preached on "Lo Que Dios No Quiere" (What God Doesn't Want).  I took them to many verses in the Bible that had the words "¡No Lo Permita Dios!" (God Forbid).  My points were 1. "Dios no Quiere Que Conversas en Mentiras" (God doesn't want you speaking lies) from Rom. 3:4, 2. "Dios no Quiere Que Continue En Sus Pecados" (God doesn't want you to continue on in your sins) from Rom. 6:1,2 and 12, 3. "Dios no Quiere Que Cometes Fornicación ó Adulterio" (God doesn't want you to commit fornication or adultery) from 1 Cor. 6:13-18, 4.  "Dios no Quiere Que Quedas Sin Convertirse a Él" (God doesn't want you to not convert to Him) from Rom. 11:1,11, 5.  "Dios no Quiere Que Confías en Tus Obras" (God doesn't want you to confide in your works) from Galatians 2:16,17, and finally 6. "Dios no Quiere Que no Creces en El Señor" (God doesn't want you not to grow in the Lord) from Gal. 6:11-14.

                In the Baptist Camp in the evening, I led a few songs before Mr. Mike Lane preached.  His message was from Acts chapter two, and he harped on the need to "Grow, Add, and Multiply" the Church.

                Afterwards, Bro. Mike came over to my house for a little fellowship, and we talked for over an hour.  He told me all about his trip to Utila, and all the fun he had.  He also told me that Pastor Julio Cordón will be leaving as pastor there.   I was very saddened to hear this.

                       

August 2nd 2004  Monday                                  Getting My Honduran License Renewed       

 

Early this morning I drove to Tegucigalpa with a list full of errands to run.  My first stop was the Post Office, where I found I had a letter from my Aunt Susie in Oklahoma.  Afterwards, I went to the Cancer Center for a room, and dropped off my things.  Then I was off to renew my Driver's license.  This turned out to be a trying experience, as I had to bring many papers with me.  Fortunately, I was able to get them close by.  One of the things they asked for was a Physical Examination and an Eye Exam.  When I was asked to read the Eye chart, I was actually able to read the very bottom line, which said where the chart was made, and the address and phone number of the company.  The people were flabbergasted!  They told me, "You're only the second person ever who could read that bottom line!"

                Afterwards, I went back into the DMV office, and had my finger printed.  It was a "do-it-yourself" thing, and I was to dip my finger in ink, and then press it into my license paper.  When I asked which finger they desired, the worker there said, "It doesn't matter, all your finger prints are the same!"  This I knew was most definitely not the case, but I desired not to cause and argument.  But I couldn't refrain from asking, "Are you sure about that?"  He responded, "Oh yeah!  All you finger prints are the same, and even your toes have the same design!"  I knew most certainly that this was not so, as each finger and toe has a very different and distinct pattern, but I didn't wish to anger the man, nor disillusion him, so I did not reply.  His coworker, however, heard the discussion and became quite irate.  She began yelling at the man saying, "What are you, stupid?  Each finger and each toe is different on every person on the face of the earth...They are not all the same..." On and on she went.  I just stepped back and listened to them argue.  Eventually, I had enough, and I interrupted, "Excuse me!?  Can I get my license today?"  They apologized, gave each other some dirty looks, and then attended upon me. 

                It seemed my patience paid off, as I was given the "Senior Citizen" price for my license, rather than the regular fee.  I can only imagine it was because I am a Missionary that they were so nice.

                Later I went to the bank to pay for my "matricula" (What we in the U.S. would call the "car registration fee.")  This must be paid every year.  My old car registration said I owed 5, 918 lempiras.  When I went to the bank to pay it, they demanded 11,118 lempiras.  This I assured them could not be right.  Thus, they sent me to the Banadesa building downtown where the DEI (Dirección Ejecutivo de Ingresos) was situated.  There they told me to ask to speak with someone, and have them fix the problem in the computer.  Thus, I'll have to go there tomorrow. 

 

August 3rd  2004  Tuesday                                A Typical Day of Seeing Honduran Bureaucracy in Action

 

                First thing this morning, I drove to Otto's shop to have new shocks put on my truck.  (The old ones are completely shot).  Otto assured me that it would be done by mid-afternoon, and then I could be on my way to buy tires afterwards.  Thus, I took a taxi to the Banadesa office to try to get my "matricula."

                This quest was an even more horrid ordeal than that of trying to renew my Driver's License.  I ended up waiting almost two hours in line!  As we waited, some of those around me began to talk with me.  I soon learned that the Honduran people love to "quejar" (complain).  They are a poor country, and they know it.  However, they place the blame on the government, whom they label "corrupt," which instead of trying to help the people, only devote their time to finding new ways of stealing from them.  This, I told them, was in my eyes very true, as I've heard story after story about how a Senator, Congressman, or other High Ranking Government Official has laundered millions of lempiras.  It's commonplace, and as wicked as it is, the Government officials think nothing of it.  It's almost as if that's just part of the "bonuses" of their job.

                We talked for some time, and they kept telling me how much they hated the complete and total inconvenience of the Honduran Bureaucratic system.  Not only are those who work in Governmental offices very ignorant (as my friend yesterday who thought all people had the same finger and toe prints), but they are also very corrupt, very slow in their work, and not too well trained or equipped to do their job correctly.  Not to mention that they are apt to take bribes continually.

                As we sat and waited, I listened to their stories, and agreed with them.  I also told them some jokes that I made up.  I said, "I always thought that the President's name here was Maduro.  But now I'm sure it's really Mal Duro" (which means in English, "I suffer badly").   I also told them that I thought the First Lady's name was "Aguas Santas," but the more I see her, the more I think she ought to be called "Aguas Negras" (sewer water).  They laughed and laughed! 

                We sat and exchanged stories for some time, and I used the opportunity to witness and give out tracts.  Eventually, I found myself at the front of the line.  When I approached the counter, they fixed my problem, and told me that I only really owed 2,200 lempiras.  This was much better than 5,918.  However, they told me that I couldn't pay for it today, as their "system" wouldn't show the change to the bank's computer until tomorrow.  Thus, I'll have to wait until tomorrow to pay my bill. (Only in Honduras!)

                The worst part, however, was to see a huge sign on the wall in the Governmental building.  It stated , "Somos honestos e integros, trabajamos duros.  ¡No nos ofende!  No queremos nada de su corrupción."  (Translated:  We are honest and full of integrity, and we work hard.  Don't offend us!  We don't want any of your corruption.)  That was too much!  There the corrupt ones were trying to justify their sin, and they were trying to say if anyone accused them of being corrupt, then they were "offending" and that they were the real corrupt ones!  I guess this is always how the wicked work.  They do wrong themselves, then they accuse others of doing what they did.  How sad.        

 

August 4th 2004 Wednesday                            Tires, Rims, and Alignment?

 

                My vehicle wasn't finished yesterday until late in the afternoon.  Thus, I had to wait until this morning to get some tires.  I asked Otto where I could go to get them the cheapest, and he recommended a place called "Chanhin."  I journeyed up and found a wonderful deal on both tires and new rims.  Thus, I had them installed.  They were actually fast in their work.  However, they couldn't align the tires afterwards, as my Pitman and Idle arms were both bad.  So, I drove back to Otto's and had them replaced. 

                They assured me they would have it done in the afternoon, and I would have enough time to go back and have them aligned so I could leave early tomorrow for home.  However, as so often in Honduras, this was not the case. 

After leaving Otto's, I finally was able to pay for my "matriculation."  It was only 2,200 as they said.  But what a pain in the rear it was!  I had to wait in line for two hours, and then wait a day before I could finally pay it, all because someone put it in the computer wrong to begin with!  But, this is Honduras.

                The truck wasn't ready in the afternoon until four thirty, and when I went to pick it up, I found that there wasn't enough time to go to the Chanhin shop for the alignment, as they close at five.  This, I'm stuck with the chore of having it done tomorrow.

 

August 5th 2004  Thursday                               Last Minute Errands

 

                I spent the day running around like a dead chicken with it's head cut off, trying to get everything done that I needed to do in order to get home in time to unload my car and then head out to Quebrada de Lajas to preach.

                At eight o'clock in the morning, I was at the Chanhin Tire Store for my Alignment.  They worked quickly, and I was out by nine.  Afterwards, I went to the mall to check my email.  As I was leaving, one of the security guards asked me about my bumper stickers, and I was able to witness to him, and give him several tracts and a Bible.  Although I was in a hurry, I made sure that nothing was more pressing then telling a person how to be born again, and I took my time dealing with him.

                He didn't trust Christ's blood to save him, but said he would indeed study the material.  So, I bid him good day, and then drove up to Aerocasillas for my mail.  Then I was off to Pricesmart for groceries.  Unfortunately, I bought so much, I couldn't get out of there until noon.  Then I had to travel back to the Cancer Center to pay for my room there and to pack my things to leave.

                It wasn't until one o'clock that I was able to finally leave Tegucigalpa.  I arrived home at a few minutes before four o'clock.  After unloading everything, I quickly packed up what we needed for services, and I journeyed out to Quebrada de Lajas to preach and teach.

                At the Hernandez house at five, I told them about how my friend Travis Dempsey and his wife Jessica had recently had a baby.  The Doctor told them before the baby was born, that it had a problem with its heart, and might possibly need surgery when it was born.  However, when the baby was born, it's heart was fine, albeit the Doctor told them that it could go bad as the child grows older.  Using this illustration, I showed them that salvation is a "new birth."  I taught them that man's problem before he is born again is his "heart" (Jer. 17:9).  He has a bad heart!  I then showed them that when one's saved, or born again, his heart is clean!  However, he can have problems as a Christian later on, as he can lose his love for God, and set his affections on other things.  I then emphasized to them their need to keep their hearts right with God.  And I stressed to those that aren't saved to get saved, as they have a "heart problem" – they don't want to be born again!

                At services up the hill in our little meetinghouse, I preached on "The Difference Between the Works of the Flesh, and the Fruit of the Spirit."  I showed them that what the flesh wants is evil, but what a Christian has through the Spirit is fruit that's wonderful.  I stressed to them their need to follow the desires of the Spirit, rather than continue walking in the flesh.

 

August 6th 2004 Friday                                      The Potato Festival

 

                I awoke this morning at four-thirty to the sound of war.  People were shooting rifles, pistols, and firecrackers over and over again.  Today was the start of the annual "Potato Festival" here in La Esperanza, and people were quick to start their celebration.  I eventually drifted off to sleep again, only to be awakened by Erick Sanchez, who came by to give me a message.

                The rest of the day I spent studying and working outside.  Castillo planted some seeds the other day that he received from Mrs. Kathy Owen (the Santidad Missionary's wife).  They did not sprout.  Castillo told me, "She gave seeds away to many different people, and everyone said they didn't produce!"  I thought to myself, "If that's not a spiritual picture, I don't know what is!  They have "another gospel" and "bad doctrine." They are planting corrupt seeds that do not grow forth unto eternal life.  And God is trying to show that to others by the physical seeds that she gave away."

                Today also marked the start of a Revival meeting at the Baptist Church.  I told those in Quebrada de Lajas that I would be happy to take them if they desired to go.  They did, so at four-thirty, I drove to Quebrada de Lajas to bring them to service.  Many people came, and my truck was completely full.  (People had their heads, hands, feet, and other body parts sticking out the windows!)

                Right before we arrived, I heard someone say, "Iris se arrojó."  It didn't dawn on me at first what that meant, but then I smelled the horrid odour, and remembered that "arrojar" means "to throw up."  When I stopped, everyone jumped out of the truck, and I had the unfavourable task of cleaning up the mess.  It was quite disgusting, and I even saw some little stomach worms in it.  This I could not tolerate, and I ended up running away and vomiting myself.  Santos was nice enough to clean up the rest of the mess, and then we sprayed the area down with Lysol before entering the building for service.

                Missionary Jose Boanerges Morán from El Salvador was the guest speaker.  He preached on the different "Stages of Christian Growth." Upon taking everyone home, we had to drive through the "Potato Festival."  All the streets downtown were packed, and it was very hard to find a street that wasn't blocked by booths, cars, or people.

                Eventually, we weeded our way through the crowds, and arrived in Quebrada de Lajas. After dropping everyone off at their homes, I drove back to the Potato Festival and had some Pupusas and potatoes for dinner.

                       

August 7th 2004 Saturday                 Teaching, Visiting, and Bring People to Revival Meeting

 

                I awoke feeling horrible this morning.  Yet, as duty is never conflict, I pressed on to my responsibility of teaching Bible Institute Class.  Today we studied the church of Ephesus, and how it corresponded with the first 57 years of church history (from 33-90 d.C.)  I showed my students how after the apostles began to preach, many began to twist the scriptures and teach salvation by faith and the deeds of the law (called the Ebionites).  I also showed how "Gnosticism" raised its ugly head early during the first century, as well as how Philosophy and Paganism began to mix with "Christianity." 

                In the afternoon on visitation, we visited a Catholic man who began to tell us that his church was "apostolic," "universal," and the only "true Church."  His plan of salvation was by faith and works.  I showed him Romans 4:5 and Eph. 2:8,9, but he seemed not to understand that salvation is by faith in the shed blood of Jesus Christ alone.  Also, I showed him verses on how a sinner (his priest) cannot forgive a man of sins, but God only (Heb. 10:10-12).

                According to him, there were three steps to salvation, and interestingly enough, they all happened after one died.  His "plan of salvation" was 1. All men who die in a state of grace will go to Purgatory to "purify" themselves."  2.  Afterwards, they will go to Heaven.  3.  There they will be judged and then accepted by God.

                I tried to explain to him why his doctrine was not correct, using 2 Cor. 5:8, which states that a Christian when he dies shall be "absent from the body, and ... present with the Lord."  Yet, he didn't respond, confiding only in his church to save him.  I then reasoned with him that to go to purgatory doesn't give a man much hope, as he still has to suffer.  Yet, he swore his religion was right, and what I spoke of was blasphemy. 

                In the evening, I drove to Quebrada de Lajas again and picked up my people for service.  We had fewer children than yesterday, and more adults.  Bro. Jose preached on "Security" from the scriptures, and showed us that 1. Salvation, 2. God's Promises, and 3. God's Power are all secure, and that a Christian cannot lose God's salvation.

 

August 8th 2004 Sunday                                    Services, Singing, and The Shortness of Life

 

                Most of this morning I spent sleeping, trying to get better.  Even though I'm eating right, I find my health and my strength failing.  I have a sore throat, and my head is congested, but as I tell the people here, "I guess I'll live!"

                At twelve, I left for Quebrada de Lajas.  Jose Martir asked me to meet him and his wife at his mother's house.  This I did, and we fellowshipped there.  Afterwards, we drove up the road to our little meetinghouse for service.  It was not a big crowd, but at least we did have one new adult come to services (Olga's mom).  I preached on the topic of "The Privilege of Prayer."

 

 

Some of those who came for service in Quebrada de Lajas

 

                At four-thirty I took everyone home and then journeyed back to my house for services at the Baptist Camp.  It's the last day of the revival meeting (which started on Friday night).  As I approached the crossroads close to my house, I found many of those who come to the Baptist Camp walking to service.  I stopped at picked them up, and drove them to my house where I parked my car.  Then, together we walked the field behind the house to the Baptist Camp.

                Bro. Mike Lane asked me to lead a few songs after the offering, and I led them in several hymns.  The last hymn we sang was "Alcance Salvation," (It Is Well With My Soul in English).  The Lord really blessed, and our voices echoed like an angelic choir.  I felt the hair on the back of my neck rise, and goose bumps flooded my skin as we bellowed forth the dear old hymn. 

                Mr. Jose Morán preached a message about "The Shortness of Life" from James 4:13-14, stressing to the lost their need to be saved, and to the saved their need to do more for the Lord, as time is short.

 

August 9th 2004 Monday                                    Visitors, Haircuts, and Chickens

 

                Early this morning I started my day with a nice breakfast of nuts, yogurt, avocado and cereal.  I am trying to eat right, ever since I read a book entitled, "How to Get Well" by Paavo Airola.  It's a very good book which teaches how to eat properly in order to keep healthy.

                After breakfast, I began work on putting together a nice metal shelving unit which I bought in Tegucigalpa to hold all my tools.  Putting it together was easy, but finding room for all my tools was something else.  While organizing and filing away my things, Mercedes came by with her two children.  She asked me if I could give them a haircut, and I told her I would.  I began on Josue (the four year old), who's hair was very long.  Then I finished with the youngest boy.  I accidentally cut his ear with my scissors, but he didn't seem to notice.  So I continued, being careful to have his mother apply pressure with a paper towel.  Afterwards, we put some Aloe Vera on it.

                While I was cutting hair, Bro. Mike Lane came over with Mr. Jose Santos Ortiz (the man who lives up the street, and whom we visited one Saturday on visitation) to visit with me.  I gave Mr. Ortiz a free haircut as well, and he was thankful.

                When they all left, I spent some time working in the yard with my plants.  I also found that one of my hens was, as they say here, "culeca." (From the slang Spanish word "cula," which means nicely "the backside."  I can only imagine they use the word to mean that the hen is "sitting" as we say in English, as it sits on it's "back side" when it incubates it's eggs).  I immediately ran to my neighbors and asked if they had any eggs they could give me.  In total I was given eleven eggs, which I quickly put under my hen.  She took to them quickly, and I hope they will hatch in a few weeks.

                Next, I looked my yard over and found I have some peaches on my four peach trees.  I also found my Plum tree was full of juicy red plums, just waiting to be picked.  I filled a small pot full of them, and took them to the water hose to wash them.  They were small, but delightfully delicious. 

                As I sat on the well and savoured my plums, David came over to visit with me.  I offered him some of my plums, and together we sat and ate them while I spoke to him about his need to grow in the Lord, and rebuked him for his not coming to service regularly.

                Later in the afternoon, I traveled to the other side of the old airport runway and mowed the yard for an old lady.  She was very thankful, and gave me some flowers to plant in return. 

                In the evening, Maria played a dirty prank upon me, as she came over and told me it was time for her to go to the hospital and have her baby.  I thought her to be telling the truth and I went to get my keys.  When I returned, she and her sister were laughing, as it wasn't her time yet.  (Although she's due around the 18th of August).        

 

August 10th 2004 Tuesday                                More Visitors!

 

                After my daily Bible reading, I took a shower and then began studying for my Bible Institute Class.  I finished both the Smyrna and Pergamos periods of Church History before day's end.

                During the day, people came by to bother me.  My neighbor brought me some Chicken feed around lunchtime.  She was so happy with the chicken I gave her, I guess she wanted to repay me.  I was careful to offer my thanks.

                Later in the afternoon, the lady who's lawn I mowed came over with her young grandson asking me to cut his hair.  I gladly did so, and we chatted for a while.

                David showed up at five, and asked to play some games.  Thus, I entertained him.  Then at six a great crowd showed up for Bible Study.  I taught from chapter ten of 1 Corinthians, and showed them many important things from God's holy word.

 

August 11th 2004 Wednesday                           Sore Throat, Pistachios, Rain Storm and Services

 

                Last night at Bible study, someone smelled horrible.  I tried to be nice and overlook it, but the odor was overwhelming.  Because of it, I awoke this morning with a sore throat.  I took several thousand milligrams of Vitamin C to cure my ailment, and was careful to drink much juice and water.

                Mike Lane came by in the afternoon, and we talked for a while.  He seems to be doing well.  However, he has plans to go back to the U.S. in September for some meetings.  He asked me to take the service while he is gone, and I told him I'd be delighted to do so.

                David came by in the afternoon, and we sat out on the well eating Pistachio nuts.  We were soon joined by some of the neighborhood children.  (Some of my best memories in Honduras have been sitting on that old well and eating nuts with the kids.)

                Not many people showed up in the evening for services at the Baptist Camp because of the gloomy, overcast clouds that filled the sky.  Eventually thunder and lightening appeared, and a huge rainstorm ensued.  Thankfully it let up just as we were leaving.

 

August 12th 2004 Thursday                              Reconciliation

 

                I have adapted well to Honduran life to the best of my assessment.  But every now and again it dawns on me just who I'm dealing with and what kind of people I'm trying to reach.  Take young Olga for example.  The other day I invited her to the Baptist Camp and our revival services there.  She was excited about going and said, "I'll even bathe for that event!"  How odd it is to think that there are people who don't bathe regularly, or who only bathe for special occasions.  But these are the people God's dealt me to work with.

                Upon my customary arrival in Quebrada de Lajas, I went to work cleaning the church house.  I brought my lawn mower as well and enjoyed cutting the grass, something I've missed.  How great is the smell of the fresh green grass after a good mowing!

As I was working, a neighbor came by and introduced himself.  His name is Mario, and he is the brother of Doña Mirsa, of whom we were renting the other house for services. 

                We chatted for a while, and he invited me over to see his house and yard.  The house was not much to see, as it was concrete block, and had not much furniture.  However the yard was huge, at least four acres, covered with a forest of thick, green corn as far as the eye could see, at least a full fourteen feet high.  His property was on a hill, which descended to a small river.  And I listened as he bragged about how well his crops were doing, while he walked me over the property to see it.  He also was nice enough to give me some peaches and pears from his fruit trees.

                I eventually was able to witness to the man, who claimed to be Catholic.  He asked me what "religion" I was, and I told him, "I'm not religious.  I'm saved!  But I'm a Baptist by denomination."  To the which he replied, "The Baptists are very different than Catholics.  They are much more 'holy.'  I've seen through my many years that most Catholics are just as wicked as they can be! They drink, smoke, cuss, fornicate, live like the devil, and worse, but then come to Mass on Sunday and pretend everything is all right.  That ought not to be so!"  Then he went on to talk about how good he was and how he didn't do all those things.

                I agreed with his observations, and commended him on his good morality, but was careful to show that one's good works or merits are not acceptable in the eyes of God, one must have the new birth.  He quickly changed the subject, and we eventually parted ways.  I hope I'll have the opportunity to witness to him again.

                Several folks came with me to the Hernandez house for service, and there I taught about what the Bible says about "Mary."  I knew several of the people's homes of which I visited had pictures of Mary on the wall, so I taught about how Mary was a sinner, and why it's not good to worship her "image."

                In evening service, I preached on the subject of "Reconciliation."  Recently I ran across a church in Milton, Florida (my home town) which is quite confused on the subject, and teach some very strange things about it.  For example they teach that the whole world is already "reconciled" to God, and that all a sinner must do to go to heaven is believe that he is already reconciled.  They also say that man's sin is already washed in the blood of Jesus Christ.  This makes for a very peculiar doctrine, as it gives a man no need to be saved.  If he's already reconciled, and already washed in the blood, what need does he have to be saved?  For how can a reconciled, blood washed person go to hell?

                Thus, I did an exhaustive study on the subject of "reconciliation," and found that reconciliation takes place when a sinner comes to the cross of Calvary and trusts the blood of Jesus Christ to save their soul.  For most certainly a man who's not saved is not already "reconciled" to God, as he's an enemy of God (Col. 1:21), and God's wrath abides on him (John 3:36).  With this in mind, I preached a sermon from 2 Cor. 5:14-21 about "Reconciliation."  My points were that:  1.  "Reconciliación viene por la Sangre" (Reconciliation comes by the Blood).  I showed that it's only through the blood that a sinner can be "reconciled" to God, as it's the blood that makes peace with God (Col. 1:20).  2. "Reconciliación traiga Santificación" (Reconciliation brings sanctification).  I showed that when a sinner is saved, he is sanctified (or cleansed) in God's eyes as it says in 1 Cor. 6:9-11, stressing the words "such were some of you."  And finally 3. "Reconcilación es lo que deben predicar los Santos" (Reconciliation is what the Saints ought to preach), using Paul's words in 2 Cor. 5:18-20, being careful to show them that a Christian's ministry is that of "reconciliation," or trying to reconcile the lost to God.  A Christian should preach to lost sinners as Paul says "Be ye reconciled to God!" This I did with all my heart, and God gave me liberty to preach boldly and eloquently in Spanish.  Eddie was in service, and squirmed the whole time, but I set my crosshairs on his heart, and preached right to him about his need to be saved for over forty minutes.  As the old saying goes, "You can't get a person saved until you get them lost!"  Unfortunately, Eddie chose not to be reconciled to God, but to continue on in his lost condition alone in the world without "hope and without God" (Eph. 2:12).

 

 

August 13th 2004 Friday                                    Who is Lucifer?

 

                I had many errands to do today, and found myself busy trying to work towards getting them all done.  However, before I could go to town, I had to run up to Mike Lane's house to borrow a book of which I wished to copy at the Local Photo Copy Shop.  I found him there with a young man named Bernardo (from Sapatillo) teaching him about the Spanish Bible Issue.  This was a blessing to see, as Bro. Mike was showing him why the 1602 TR is the best version in Spanish, and how the other versions (especially the 1960), make many changes, additions, subtractions, and omissions.

                Eventually the question arose about the word "Lucero" (the word for Lucifer or Satan) in Isaiah 14:12 in the Spanish Bible, which is the same word used for Jesus Christ in 2 Peter 1:19, and Mike asked me to look it up, as the footnote in his English Bible had the definition as "the planet Venus."   Upon my arrival home, I went through every resource I had, lexicons, Greek, Hebrew, and Latin texts, Bible Dictionaries, and more to find out the history of the Spanish word "Lucero." 

                What I found was anything but surprising.  And, I found what my Pastor calls "an advanced revelation" in the King James Bible!  For starters, I found most resources say that the word "Lucero" is supposed to come from the Latin translation of Jerome (albeit the Vulgate uses the word Lucifer).  The word in Hebrew (the original language of the Old Testament) is helel.  Interestingly enough, modern Lexicons don't define the word.  However when I looked in the Complutensian Polyglot lexicon of the early 1500's, I found the word means "Lucifer" or "Satan." 

I also went to the Internet and looked up the word "Lucifer."  What I found was several pages written to undermine the KJV translation of "Lucifer," saying that the Hebrew word was translated wrong by the KJV translators, as it applies only to the Babylonian King in the context, and is not a reference to the Devil in any way, shape or form (Satan trying to erase himself from the Bible?)  But, I knew this would not do, as in Ezekiel 28:1-17, God is speaking to the Satan through the king of Tyrus.  So why could God not be talking to Lucifer (Satan) through a Babylonian king?

                Further I found that the word "Lucifer" also means "light-bearer."  This of course would be a direct reference to Satan, the angel of light (2 Cor. 11:4).  I also learned that in the original languages, Hebrew in the Old Testament and the Greek Textus Receptus for the New Testament, that it is also possible to confuse the devil (Isa. 14:12) with Jesus Christ (2 Peter 1:19).  For the Greek word in the Textus Receptus in 2 Peter 1:19 is fosforos (fosforos), much different from helel.  However the Complutensian Polyglot defines fosforos as "Lucifer" himself.  This simply cannot be the case, as any Bible believer knows that "Lucifer" doesn't "arise in your hearts" as the verse says.  The verse is clearly speaking of the Lord Jesus Christ, the "day star" (as the KJV has it).

                As I studied it out, I found Jerome's corrupt Latin vulgate has "Lucifer" in both Isa. 14:12 and in 2 Peter 1:19.  And it's just as easy to confuse these too words, as you can "Lucero" in both places in Spanish.  In Erasmus' Latin New Testament Text of 1522 and in the Complutensian Polyglot of the early 1500's, I was surprised to see the words "Lucifer" in Latin as well in both places.  Not a good thing!  No wonder God didn't give us the word of God in Latin!

                But in the King James Bible, there is no confusion whatsoever and it's impossible to confuse the Lord Jesus Christ with the devil when comparing those two verses!  The word "Lucifer" in Isaiah is most certainly a reference to the Devil, and in 2 Peter, we find the word "Day Star" which is most certainly a reference to Jesus Christ.  Thus, it's impossible to confuse Jesus Christ and the Devil with the King James Bible!  The King James is the only translation in any language that doesn't call Jesus Christ Lucifer!!!  I'll stick with the Old Infallible English King James Bible!!!

                After studying about "Lucifer," I drove downtown to take care of business.  As I was driving along, I came upon Hernan Corrales, who said he'd just come from the "Public Baths."  I was not familiar with such a place, so I asked him to take me there.  He willing did so, and together we drove a little ways outside of town to a beautiful area that was overflowing with water.  There were streams coming out of the mountain all around us, and the city of La Esperanza had built a nice retaining wall to capture the water so that people could come and bathe.  It was a nice area, and had an almost "Ancient Greek" feel to it.  Many people were bathing there (mostly children) and seemed to be having a good time. 

                Around the corner of the small hill at the end of the road, there were two huge rooms with a huge door on the front of each.  Over the one on the right was written "Damas" (Women), and to the one of the left was painted "Caballeros" (Gentlemen).  Hernan took me inside the men's bathing facility and inside was a huge concrete slab with a hole in the floor.  A very large amount of water was streaming out of the side of the mountain through a metal tube about eight inches in diameter, and then draining out through the hole in the floor.  "This is where people come to bathe," Hernan told me.  He continued, "This is pure mountain water that's clean enough to drink!  I come here to shower often when there's no water in the house as it's so refreshing!" 

                It was indeed a tranquil, beautiful place.  However the floor was very slimy (making me think it'd be easy to slip and fall) and the thought of bathing with other people made me think twice about ever returning.  

 

The Swimming Pool at Public Baths

 

                After dropping Hernan off at his house, I then drove up to Ramon Galeano's to ask for some help translating some Gospel Tracts.  A friend of mine sent them to me via email asking me to revise them.  Ramon was happy to help, and asked me to leave the tracts with him and pick them up tomorrow.  This I did and said I would do.

                In Bible Study we had a great crowd.  Before we started, Susie gave me the news that Maria had her baby today.  It was a boy, and it weighed ten pounds.  I was also informed that today was Carlos' birthday.  He is now fourteen years old.  He doesn't look it, as he's a very short young man.  But at least he's growing spiritually.

                I taught from 1 Corinthians chapter eleven about what the Bible has to say about "hair length."  Many erroneously make the passage apply to a woman wearing a "vale."  But I proved it was talking about the hair from verses five, fourteen, and fifteen.

 

August 14th 2004 Saturday                               Angry Students and Power Plants

 

                I awoke early this morning and spent much time studying before my Bible Institute class.  I also cooked myself a good breakfast before leaving.  Upon my arrival at class, I was given more than ample time (two hours) to try to catch up for the classes I was behind, and we were able to complete two lessons before finishing, albeit with some difficulty.

                I taught on the subject of "Smyrna" and "Pergamos," being careful to show them the true history of the church in those periods (Smyrna 90-325 A.D. and Pergamos 325-500A.D.) and how it unfolded.  Not only did I teach them about the suffering, martyrdoms, and persecutions of the Christians during that time, but I also took them step-by-step through how the church as a whole fell into apostasy.  I also was careful to point out those groups who were faithful to the Lord during that time, and stayed steadfast and unwavering in their doctrine, preaching, and practices. 

                I couldn't leave out the history of the Bible, and I showed them how Satan used men like Origen and Jerome to corrupt the word of God.  Afterwards, I took out an NIV Bible in Spanish and showed it to them, and made them look up certain verses.  Most of the verses I had them look up weren't even in the NIV!  They were a bit perturbed, and couldn't understand why someone would print a Bible and leave verses out of it.  I told them that it was because they were following the texts of Origen instead of the Textus Receptus.  Then I made a statement that made some of my students very angry.  I said, "The NIV is only good for toilet paper and nothing else!!!" 

Ovilio, Anastacia, and Jose Santos Gonzales weren't in agreement and said I was too "radical" in my opposition to new versions, saying that they weren't all bad as they "contained" the words of God. They then continued by saying they weren't happy with how I treated their beloved 1960 Spanish Bible either (which also comes from Origen's text), and that they didn't like the 1602 TR version.  The rest of the class stood up for the 1602 TR however (which came from the true texts), and were in agreement that if a Bible doesn't contain all the words of God, then its indeed nothing more than a perversion of God's word. 

Baldomero too spoke up and said, "I've studied a lot about the versions in Spanish with Bro. Breaker and with Erick Sanchez, and I'm convinced that the 1602 TR is the purest word of God is Spanish!"  That was a blessing to hear.  So, my class is divided.  Some are Pro-1960 advocates who reject the truth, and desire to continue on in apostasy using an apostate [per]version of the Bible, while others have had their eyes opened to the truth, and desire to use the pure word of God in their language.  I guess it will always be thus.  Some want the truth and love it, and will do anything for it, and others despise the truth and are actively hostile towards it.

                After letting them have their say for about twenty minutes, I then took the floor and calmed them down.  Before changing the subject, however, I asked them the following, "How many of you would drink a glass of cool-aid if I said that I'd just mixed a little bit of poison in it?"  They all dogmatically responded that they would not drink, as it is poisoned.  I then reminded them, "It's only a little poison, and a whole lot of cool-aid.  But all it takes is just a little to ruin the whole thing!"

                I continued by asking them, "How many of you would eat some cup cakes that I made if I added just a smidgen of dung while mixing the batter?"  They all affirmed that they would not eat.  I then reminded them, "But it's just a very small amount of dung, and a whole lot of good, sweet cup cake!"  Still they refused.  I then told them, "Then a Bible with just a little bit of man's wisdom mixed in it is completely worthless, as a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump!"  And I left it at that.  Those who were Anti-1960 gave a hearty "Amen!" while those that were offended gave a few glaring looks at me and each other. 

                In the afternoon, Bani asked me if I'd like to take a tour of the new electrical plant up the road (of which he is now employed).  I told him I would, and we decided to go there at two-thirty.  I invited Luis Meza, Castillo, David, and others as well, and together we drove up to the Power Plant in my car.  When we arrived, we had to park under a Pine tree and walk way over to the other side of the valley and down a steep incline before reaching the plant.  It was much smaller than I expected, but it was worth the tour, as I now know where my electricity comes from.

 

The New Power Plant

                Inside we found the small generator run by the nearby pond.  When the water reaches a certain level, they let the water out, and then it runs through a tube at high speed, turning the turbines and producing electricity. 

 

The Turbine that produces Electricity

 

            We also visited the new plant they are building on the other side of the mountain.  It was quite a hike to get there, and we had to march through thick jungle, and slide down steep cliffs before we arrived.  Bani told me he is working at that building installing light bulbs, and other electrical things. 

                It was fun to see the place, and I enjoyed the hike through the mountains.  I also was glad to get out a few tracts to the workers there too.

 

August 15th 2004 Sunday                                  Six Saved!

 

                The dreaded "D-word" (diarrhea) hit me this morning, and most of the early morning hours I spent on the stool.  I took some Pepto Bismal to help me, and ate only toast for breakfast, hoping it would help.  It seemed to do the job, and I left at eleven o'clock for Quebrada de Lajas.

                No one was home at Ovilio's house, so I walked up the hill to Jose Martir's.  I found Angelica, Blanca, and several other women there working making Nacatamales.  I have enjoyed these wonderful treats on many occasions, but was ignorant of how they made such tasty delicacies.  But today I learned just how they make them.

They start by grinding corn and then boiling it.  They continually mix it until they have a creamy corn solution (what they call Atol).  Afterwards they cut banana plant leaves and tear them into small squares about eight by ten inches.   When the Corn mush is ready, they pour a little onto a banana leaf, and then add "Pitipoas" (Peas), rice, cut up green beans, potatoes slices, and raw chicken filets that have been soaked in a special sauce (unfortunately they leave the bones).  Afterwards, they fold the banana leaf, and then press the corners to make it into a rectangular shape.  When they have made as many tamales as they desire, they put them into a large ceramic pot and then cook them for two and a half to three hours.  When they are ready, all one must do is pull the banana leaf off and enjoy!

After learning how to make Nacatamales, I left the women to work and did some visitation.  Several of the neighborhood children asked to come with me, and together we knocked on many doors and invited people to service.  Unfortunately, only a few showed up, and the crowd was smaller than usual.  I preached on the topic of "Aceptando El Señor" (Accepting the Lord).  I used the Socratic Method of asking questions, and then asking them to answer them.  When they couldn't, then I would teach them.  My questions were 1.  "¿Cómo puede aceptar al Señor?" (How does one accept the Lord?)  Answer:  By Faith in His Shed Blood.  2.  "¿Cuándo debe aceptar al Señor?" (When Should One Accept the Lord?)  Answer:  Now! Today!   3.  "Cuántas veces puede aceptar al Señor?"  (How many times does one accept the Lord?).  Answer: Only once!  4.  "¿Qué pasa cuando alguién acepta al Señor?" (What happens when someone accepts the Lord?)  Answer:  They are born again and saved eternally!

                After service, I was invited to sample some Nacatamales at the Martinez house.  They were very good, and I savoured every bit of them.  Martir's 22-year-old cousin was there as well named Dorinda, and I witnessed to her also. 

                I arrived late at the Baptist Camp in the evening, just after song service.  Bro. Mike preached on the importance of coming to church, and the importance of seeing the church grow.  During the invitation, six people came forward to be saved.  I lead three of them to the Lord myself (Saul, Jose, and Suzie), while Bro. Mike lead the other three to the Lord, one of which included Carlos' sister Maria.  After service I gave away Bibles to those that didn't have them, and encouraged them to read them.

 

August 16th 2004 Monday                 Planting Seeds

 

                I preached my voice out yesterday.  It was not at full strength today, and I felt very stopped up in my sinuses.  But I didn't let that hinder me from working outdoors.  After breakfast, I began working on pulling the sweet smelling Mums from my flower garden, as well as other types of flowering plants.  Before I knew it, I had a whole wheelbarrow full, so I took them around to my neighbors to see if they wanted them.  Because of the heavy rain we received last night, the plants were easy to pull out by the roots.  Thus, I figured they could be "recycled."  And, my neighbors were more than happy to take them off my hands and transplant them in their yard.  I also gave them some snapdragons as well.

                The rest of the day I spent working on preparing the soil to plant new flowers.  This took several hours, and many of the neighborhood kids came to help me.  We planted wildflowers, larkspurs, dianthus, Bachelor's Buttons, Sweet Williams, Baby's Breath, and much more.  I can only hope they will sprout and grow up into beautiful, sweet-smelling plants.

                After planting, those that helped came and sat on the old well with me.  Together we ate Pistachio nuts while we talked and laughed.  As we were relaxing, one of the youngsters said something about "kissing."  I replied, "You should never kiss anyone until you get married, because kissing is what makes babies!"  The child looked at me like as though I was dumber than a box of rocks and then said, "No it's not!  Babies come from sexual relations!"  Stupified, and not believing that a young child would know such, I responded, "Yeah, well kissing is what starts all that, so you need remember not to kiss anyone until your married to them!"  They replied, "Okay!" and that was the end of that discussion.  I guess they have already been influenced by the "secular" school system and already learned about "sex education."  How sad.  That's Plato's "Republic" in action.

 

August 17th 2004 Tuesday                                Mowing Grass, Needy Soul, Bible Study and Toribio

 

                Hotir came this morning to mow the yard.  While he worked, I cooked breakfast and did some reading.  After completing work on the tracts for my friend, I drove into town to email them to him.  I also ran some errands and paid the water bill.

                As I walked downtown, I came across Toribio Hernandez making a phone call at the Hondutel Telephone office.  I approached him and spoke with him about some things that I'd heard about him.  Emilia (his woman) came to my crying on Thursday saying that he's never home, nor does he provide for his family, and that he's always away with other women. 

                Desiring to know the truth, I asked Toribio about this, and questioned him about his salvation.  He wouldn't answer, but just looked down at the ground and remained quiet.  Finally he said, "We need to talk, but not now.  Maybe some other day."  And then he walked off.  I can only imagine that what I've heard is true. 

                At the Post Office, I received a letter from a 23-year-old man named Denis Gomez from Tegucigalpa asking for help.  In his letter he said that he received the tract "Justified by His Blood" from a me with my address on the back, and that he decided he'd write to my address.  He also gave me his phone number and asked me to call him, saying he "didn't want to live," and that he was "going through some things" and "needed someone to talk to."

                I called the young man when I arrived home on my cell phone, and spoke with him for about twenty minutes.  He wouldn't open up to me and tell me his problems, but asked me to meet him the next time I was in Tegucigalpa.  I recommended he meet me at the Cancer Center the next time I'm there, and he thought that'd be a good idea.  I asked if he was saved, and he claimed to be, however I couldn't get a clear-cut testimony out of him.  All I know is that he read the tract, and said that it "helped" him.

                In the evening, several folks came for Bible Study.  I taught about the Lord's Supper from 1 Corinthians chapter eleven, and showed the difference between it and the most ungodly Catholic atrocity and blasphemy known as "The Mass."  My students listened and understood.

 

August 18th 2004 Wednesday           Studying the Church and Teaching About it

 

                All day I spent studying.  I finally finished my Bible Institute course about "Thyatira."  All I lack is finishing "Sardis" before Saturday class.   I had some visitors today also.  The neighborhood kids came over to play.  I played with them and then sent them home. 

                In the evening, I taught at the Baptist Camp on the subject of "The Church."  We didn't have a large crowd, as it was raining outside, but those "faithful few" showed up.

 

August 19th 2004 Thursday                                              The Tocuacin

 

                Early this morning I awoke to find another one of my chickens missing.  That makes three in total that I've lost.  Castillo found it, or I should say "part of it" a few minutes later behind the cornfield.  All that was left was its belly and feet.  Castillo said he though it was a "Tocuacin" (Opossum), and said he'd look around to see if he could find it.  I asked him to please do so, or I wouldn't have any more chickens! 

                While he was looking for the savage beast with a sweet tooth for chicken, one of Mike Lane's cows broke the barbwire fence and entered into our pasture.  We then had to chase him around until we were able to catch him and put him back.  I stood guard while Castillo went for some staples and a hammer to put the barbwire fence back the way it was.

                After a shower, and studying for services today, I was ready to leave for Quebrada de Lajas at ten-thirty.  When I went outside, I found Castillo walking up carrying a Opossum by its tail.  He said, "I found it in the oak tree at the back of the property."  He immediately killed it, and that was the end of our "great hunt."  Now my chickens are safe, at least I hope! 

          

                After arriving in Quebrada de Lajas, I had to tell my story to everyone.  I went from house to house telling them about the evil Opossum that devoured my chickens, and how the brave Castillo slew the savage beast!  At least the children liked my story.

                Jose Martir went with me on visitation in the afternoon, and we visited many different houses that we'd never been to before.  In house after house it was the same thing.  No one knew where they were going when they died, and everyone of them was either Catholic, or didn't go to church.  How sad!  I left a tract at each house and showed them some verses on salvation.  I also invited them to come to service.

                While walking back up to the Hernandez house, I talked with Santos (Emilia's son).  He is 19 years old, and he got Argentina (15 years old) pregnant.  They live together, but aren't married, as the law says that they can't get married until she's 18.  I stressed to him his need to do right, and to repent for his sin of fornication.  I told them that to God marriage is the vow that one makes, and they could make that vow to God right now.  Then for testimony's sake, they could do it "legally" when she turned 18.  They said they'd "think about it."

                At the Hernandez house, I taught on "What a lost person is."  I showed them many verses showing that a lost person is without hope, without God, an enemy of God, a child of disobedience, and more.  I also used the illustration of the Opossum, and told them, "You're a poor chicken!  Satan is the 'tacuacin' and he wants to devour you!  You must be born again before it's too late!"

                At six o'clock service at our meetinghouse, I taught on "Fidelidad" (Faithfulness), and how important it is to be faithful.  I showed that God is faithful in salvation, as he can't deny us eternal life after we are saved (2 Tim. 2:13).  I continued by teaching them that God is faithful even in our temptations to give us a way to escape (1 Cor. 10:13).  And I showed them that God is also faithful in his dictation or in his writings (1 Tim. 1:15) and when God tells us something, we can bank on it, because God cannot lie!

 

Those in Service at Quebrada de Lajas

 

                I finished my sermon by telling them that God wants us to be faithful to in the following: 1. "Membresía" (Church attendance) from Heb. 10:25, 2.  "Ministerio" (In the ministry) in preaching and teaching, as well as our service for Christ from 1 Cor. 4:2, Ef. 6:21, 1 Tim. 1:12, etc., 3.  "Matrimonio," (Marriage) from 1 Cor. 7:10.  I also stressed the importance that parents have in being faithful in raising their children in the Lord.

                After service, I drove down the road to the CAM church (Central American Mission) where Plutarco is the pastor.  I heard him preach a sermon and then afterwards took them home.  My old friend Daisy and her brothers were there as well (from my Children's ministry several years ago).  I was happy to see them, and took them home as well.

 

August 20th 2004 Friday                                    Opossum on a stick!

 

                I awoke this morning to the sound of someone rapping on my bedroom window.  When I arose to see who it was, I saw Hotir with something hanging on a stick.  I quickly robed myself and then went outside to see what it was.  Hotir met me at the back porch, and he had a "Tacuacin" on a stick.  I asked him where it came from, and he said that his dog killed it last night and they found it in their yard in the morning. 

 

Hotir with a dead Opossum

                I hope that's the last of them!  As he showed it to me, I remembered the words of Don Mario in Quebrada de Lajas the other day when he said, "All animals have the right to live!"  I questioned him, "Are you sure?  Cause I don't think snakes do!  I think all snakes ought to die!"  He replied, "Well, that's another story.  They ought to be killed, but other animals ought to live."  I wish I'd thought to tell him, "Well, if all animals have the right to live, then how come nobody told that to the Opossum, cause he killed three of my chickens!?!?"

                Later in the day, Mike Lane came over to talk with me.  We visited for a while, and I rode up to the Baptist Camp with him to help him drop off his trailer.  He recently drilled a well for Bro. Bill Kepler, and all his equipment was on the trailer.

                The rest of the day I spent studying preparing material for my Bible Institute Class.

                In the evening a good group came for Bible Study, and I taught from chapter twelve of 1 Corinthians about the "Body of Christ."

 

August 21st 2004 Saturday                               Bible Institute and Visitors

                       

                Often I think, "I need a vacation!"  About three or four weeks of doing nothing would be nice.  But alas, I cannot take a break.  At eight thirty this morning, we started our class about Thyatira (500-1000 A.D).  We also studied the Sardis period (1000-1500 A.D.).  We only have one class left next Saturday, and I'll have to finish both Philadelphia and Laodicea in one hour's time. (Really not enough).

                Bro. Mike Lane asked me to teach a week long Bible Institute class the 5th through the 9th of September at the Baptist Camp to those from Sapatillo.  I'll be speaking on the subject of the "Roman Catholic Church."  Also, Erick asked me to continue teaching at the Lenca Bible Institute next semester (Starting September 18th).  My class will be on "Learning how to Counsel Others from the Bible."

                In the afternoon, Alex, Victor, and Lindsey (my faithful Visitation partners) came for visitation.  We visited several houses and were able to witness to a few people.

                Bro. Mike asked me last Sunday to go to Sapatillo with him tomorrow and preach.  I readily agreed.  Thus, later today I walked back to the Baptist Camp and asked him what time we shall be leaving.  He replied, "Six o'clock in the morning."  So, tomorrow will be a full day of preaching at Sapatillo, then at Quebrada de Lajas, and then attending service at the Baptist Camp.

                At six thirty Carlos, Allen, and Eleazer came by to play Dominoes and Chess.  Carlos is learning very well how to play Chess, and I am amazed at his progress.  Allen and Eleazer are another story.

 

August 22nd 2004 Sunday                                  A Full Day of Serving the Lord

                       

                At six this morning I locked the house and walked out to the car.  Eleazer showed up just as I was leaving, and I told him to jump in.  Together we drove up to Bro. Mike Lane's house and found that he and Rich Fisher were ready to go.  Together we all drove first to Quebrada de Lajas, and I stopped to see if Jose Martir and Blana were ready.  They said they were too tired to come, and told me to go on without them. 

                On the way to San Lorenzo, I noticed my gas gauge was low, and I stopped both Mike and Rich to tell them so.  They thought it best for me to leave my car at our meetinghouse in Quebrada de Lajas, which we did, albeit I received a swift rebuke for not filling up my vehicle.

                After securing my truck at the church house, I then rode with Bro. Mike, his wife, Alex, and Sabino to the little aldea of San Lorenzo.  There we found a huge group of Canadians camped out at the city square.  We introduced ourselves, and they told us they were working with the Christian Organization "Samaritan's Purse" and that they were a group of Baptists from Alberta, Canada.

                After picking up people for services, we then journeyed to the little area of Lajitas for services.  I was asked to lead songleading, and afterwards Sabino preached a message to the people.

 

Sabino (on the Left with Bible) Preaching at Lajitas

 

                When service was over, we quickly piled ourselves into Bro. Mike's Isuzu Trooper and in Bro. Rich's Toyota Pickup.  It was a rather bumpy ride, and I found myself continually jogged and bounced around as we hit pothole after pothole.  A young girl rode with me that was being tossed around worse than I was, struggling to hold on for dear life.  I took the following picture of her:

 

 

                Later in the day we arrived in Ojos de Aguas, where I was asked to preach.  Debbie (Mike's wife) took the children outside with her, and I preached to the adults inside.  My message was, "What every Church Needs."  My text was from Acts chapter twenty and verses seventeen through thirty-eight.  My points were that every church needs:

 

                                1.  El Evangelio Santo             (The Holy Gospel)                                                 1 Cor. 15:1-4

                                2.  Gente Salvo                        (Saved People)                                        Acts 20:28

                                3.  Doctrina Sana                     (Sound Doctrine)                                    Titus 1:9

                                4.  Pastor Sabio                       (A Wise Pastor)                                      1 Tim. 3:1,2

                                5.  Membros Sujetos               (Members that are Willing to Follow)    Hebrews 13:17

 

                On their way back to La Esperanza, Mike dropped me off at our little church in Quebrada de Lajas.  Eleazer came with me, and together we walked up to Jose Martir's house for lunch.  There we sat and talked on the porch while we waited for meal to be served. 

While we sat, Eleazer told the following joke, "¿Cuánto tiempo estaba Cacique Lempira en la India?" (Translated: How long was Lempira the Great Indian Chief in India?)  Immediately, I begin to think about the country of India, and I thought to myself, "He never went to India!"  So, I responded, "He never was in India!"  Eleazer quickly corrected me and said, "Nueve meses estaba en la India," (Nine months he was in his mother, "la India" in Spanish). 

Services in Quebrada de Lajas went as well as can be expected.  Mostly children came.  But praise God Martir and Blanca where there.  I preached on "The Cross as a Place Rather than a Thing" and tried to show them how it's sin to worship a cross as a relic, or "holy" thing.  We ought rather to worship Him who died on the cross!  My points were that at the cross is where 1. "Jesús Pagó por Nuestros Pecados" (Jesus Paid For Our Sins),  2. Where "Uno Debe Mirar Para ser Perdonado" (On must look to be forgiven), and 3.  Where "Debemos Pensar por Nuestra Vida Diaria" (On What One Must Think in His Daily Christian Life), from the words of Jesus, "...let him take up his cross and follow me" (Matt. 16:24).

                In services at the Baptist Camp, I led a few songs before Bro. Mike Lane preached.  Afterwards, several came forward desiring to be baptized.  One was a man who had never come before named Jose, and I was asked to speak with him and see if he was saved or not.  His testimony was very awful, and I discerned that he was not trusting in the substitutional blood atonement to save his soul, rather in the false teaching of the Charismatics.  He said he was very sick about a year ago, and he prayed and asked God to heal him physically.  It was then that he felt a trembling, and tingling in his body, and then he supposedly received the Holy Spirit.

                I took him through the scriptures to show him that what he said did not line up with the Bible, and that the Holy Spirit only comes when one trusts Jesus Christ as their Saviour by faith in the blood. However, he continued talking about what he "felt" and how he "feels" now.  I told him he was trusting in his emotions rather than in what God said to trust in.  Albiet he couldn't understand the difference.  Bro. Mike came over after service and spoke with him some more, but he never did get saved.  I can only hope and pray that he will.               

 

August 23rd 2004 Monday                 Raphael Martinez

 

                I was sick most of the day yesterday with a congested head and the most miserable ailment of sneezing continually.  Last night I took some Nyquil, and I awoke feeling a little better this morning, but not much.  Despite my illness, I drove into town to check my email, and run a few errands. 

                As I was leaving the Cybernet Café, Raphael Martinez, my old Bible Student from Colomoncagua came up to the car and talked with me.  He's now twenty years old, and is studying at a Bible Institute with his Pastor named Robert.  Unfortunately they are "Interdenominational," in their affiliation, but I can only hope that the sound Bible teaching I taught him will stick with him.

                The rest of the day I spent at home resting.  Monday is my only day off, and I enjoy taking advantage of it.

 

August 24th 2004 Tuesday                                More Dead Chickens

 

                I awoke this morning to find two more dead chickens in my pen.  We had a hard North wind last night and it blew their little shelter over on top of them.  Two of them were smothered to death, and my rooster had his leg penned under a board.  Fortunately, he recovered.  However, one of the chickens was half eaten, proving that undoubtedly there is another "Tocuacin" around somewhere.  I can only hope we can kill it before it kills anymore of my chickens.

                All day long I spent studying Church History and preparing notes for my last Bible Institute class on Saturday.  I started on the period of Philadelphia (1500-1881). But did not finish.  I also lack preparing the period of Laodicea (1881-Coming of Christ).

                Bible Study in the evening went well. We didn't have a very big crowd, mostly the Cordoba Clan, but my students were attentive.  I taught on chapter thirteen of 1 Corinthians about "Charity," and how new versions of the Bible in both Spanish and English erroneously change the word to "love" (amor).

                       

August 25th 2004 Wednesday                           Studying

 

                All day I spent studying again trying to finish my notes for Bible Institute Class.  At lunchtime, Mercedes came by to tell me that her youngest son was so sick that he almost died, and Rhonda took her to the hospital with him.  She also asked me for some money to help her.  I gave her some "charity" as well as some food.

                For church service in the evening at the Baptist Camp we didn't have anyone show up.  We thought about going home when eventually, little by little people began arriving, albeit almost an hour late (Honduran time).

                Mike taught about the importance of Daily Bible Reading, Meditation, and prayer.

 

August 26th 2004 Thursday                              Trying to Reach Laodicea

 

                Early in the morning, I spent some time working more on my Bible Institute Class notes.  The Philadelphia church age is packed full of people working for the Lord, and it's hard to decide which ones are the most important.  But little by little I was able to weed through and keep the most important information.

                Later in the day, I ran into town to do some errands and check my email before service in the evening in Quebrada de Lajas.  Bro. Mike Lane came with me, and we showed a "Christian Film" entitled, "Algo Mejor Que Futbol" (Something Better than Soccer.)  I was amazed at how many people came for the movie.  We had at least 90 people, if not more.  How frustrating it is to me to see people willing to come out for a movie, but they aren't willing to come out for preaching (which is more important).  As I study Philadelphia and Laodicea, the angrier I become.  In Philadelphia, people loved the word and were willing to come to service to hear it.  However in Laodicea, it seems you can't get people to come to listen to preaching, you have to use some kind of "gimmick" to get a crowd.  I don't like it!  I believe I was born in the wrong church period!!!

                Halfway through the film, it began raining, and we had to take everything inside the church house.  We finished the film there, and the building was completely full of people packed in like sardines.  After the film was over, they wouldn't wait around for an invitation, they all left in a hurry.  I can only hope the film planted a seed in their hearts, and that they will return for regular services in the future.

                Upon taking people home, I had a terrible disaster.  The roads were so slick with mud that my truck slid into a ditch going downhill.  I went very slowly, and made sure I kept hitting my brakes, but it was to no avail.  The weight of the truck, and everyone inside made us slide all over the road.  We ended up in a ditch on the left side of the road and I had to hit the gas to get us out.  We drove along for at least thirty feet as the passenger side of my truck swiped the dirt embankment.  (I kept praying, "Help us Jesus, help us Jesus," in Spanish.)  Eventually we broke free and made it down the hill, albeit I had several dents in the left side of my truck, and many small scratches from the rocks and underbrush.  It just made me sick to see my truck messed up so.  But, I guess that's part of the ministry.  I'll have to have some bodywork done on the truck, I only hope it won't cost too much.

 

August 27th 2004 Friday                                    Laodicea

 

                I studied all day long, but to no avail.  There is just too much history in the Laodicea Church period to condense into a one-hour class.  As I studied, I was constantly bothered by neighbors coming over to visit.

                Bible Study in the evening went well.  We had a good crowd, and I taught about what the Bible says about "Tongues" and how they are always a written, spoken language.  I clarified that the words "unknown tongue" is a reference to a language that one speaks in the church that is "unknown" to the church.  I also showed the seven rules of speaking in tongues (or other languages) in the church.  Finally I showed how the Charismatics and Pentecostals are completely deceived when they do what they call "speaking in tongues" as the gift of tongues that the apostles had was to speak in another language that before they didn't know, so that others could hear the gospel in their own language (See Acts chapter two for the list of languages).

 

August 28th 2004 Saturday                               Last Day of Bible Institute

 

                Last night I had the strangest dream.  I dreamt that men and women all over the world switched souls randomly.  When they came to the realization that they were in the body of someone else, they went crazy and began screaming, panicking, and acting hysterically.  Eventually, their soul would return to its original body, and then they would get back to normal.  However, at times, others who hadn't gone through the experience yet would find themselves in the body of another.  When they came to the realization and began to react in terror, those that already had the experience would laugh and make jokes, as though it was just a "rite of passage" that all must go through.  What a strange dream!

While driving to the Bible Institute in the morning, I happened upon Mike Lane at the local "taller" (fix it shop).  He was having his lawn mower fixed.  I stopped and talked with him, and then invited him to come with me to see the Bible Institute.  He agreed, and we went there together.  I introduced him to Erick Sanchez, as well as my students.  He enjoyed the visit, and Erick even asked him to teach a class next semester.

                During my last class at the Bible Institute this semester, I took them as quickly as I could through Philadelphia (1500-1881) and Laodicea (1881-20??).  I taught them about the word of God that Philadelphia "kept" (which was the Textus Receptus), as well as the "open door" they had before them in the way of Missions.  I also showed them the apostasy of Laodicea and the five main ungodly heresies that America produced:  1. Pentecostalism, 2. Jehovah Witnesses, 3. Seventh Day Adventists, 4. Mormonism, and 5. Christian Scientists.  My students listened well, and when I finished, they thanked me for a very wonderful class, and told me that they were grateful to have learned more about their Christian heritage.

                After class, I journeyed up to the local Tire store and had my tires aligned.  They were very much out of wack after the disaster of Thursday night.  It cost me 180 lempiras (or about ten American Dollars).

                In the afternoon, we were rained out in visitation.  My boys came anyway, and we played Chess, hoping the rain would let up.  After they left, I went to bed exhausted feeling sickly, only to be awakened by Zarahi, Cynthia, Eleazar, Alan, and Carlos who came over to play Chess.  They walked all the way from their house in the rain to come, and when they entered my house they were sopping wet!  I played several games with them, and then sent them home.

 

August 29th 2004 Sunday                                  Baptisms!

 

                I awoke this morning and went outside to check on my chickens.  I was glad to see that two new chicks had hatched in the early morning hours, and two more where on the way.  Hopefully, I will be able to recuperate my losses with these new chicks.

                At twelve o'clock today I journeyed out to Quebrada de Lajas to pick up people for our Baptism.  Many people wanted to come, and my truck was completely full of people when we left for Pastor Ramon Galeano's church.

                Bro. Mike Lane preached on Baptism, and then we began the "dunking."  The water in the baptistery at the church was freezing cold!  It took me some time to get used to it, as leg muscles cramped up on me.  However, I endured it.  I went first, and I baptized Jose Martir, Blanca, and Carlos.  Afterwards, Mike baptized the rest of the people  (six in total).

 

          

                    Baptizing Jose Martir                                    Baptizing Carlos                                      Baptizing Blanca

 

                After taking everyone home to Quebrada de Lajas, I walked up to Martir's house and visited with them for a while.  We talked about how much their lives have changed since I've been coming there.  Before I came, Blanca wasn't saved, they weren't married, and they weren't baptized, but now all that has changed!

                We also talked about Martir's sister Angelica.  She got saved when I first preached there.  But she is not growing in the Lord.  In fact, she was quite mad at me the other day, as I accidentally ran over one of her chickens.  I desired to make it good, and I paid for it, but she was still angry.  However, the next day Mr. Javier ran over one of her turkeys.  He didn't even tell her about it, but instead threw it on the side of the road and then drove off! This made her angry at him, and took some of the heat off of me.  Yet, I didn't want Satan to get the advantage, nor for her to harbor bitterness in her heart, so I went and talked with her and told her I felt bad about running over her chicken.  She forgave me, and all was well.  I guess we are to comfort the feeble minded.

                In the afternoon, I went to the local Gun Repair shop to see if my little .25 pistol was fixed yet.  A spring inside of it keeps breaking, and it causes the whole pistol to keep from shooting.  The owner of the shop wasn't there, but his "women" was and she invited me to wait, claiming he would only be a few minutes in coming.  However, a few minutes turned into an hour or more.  It was a blessing, however, as I had the opportunity to witness to the lady and stress to her the pressing need to trust Jesus Christ as her Saviour.  I also explained to her why God desires people to get married, and not live in fornication, as she and the owner are not wedded, rather only "living together."  She desires to be married, but he is continually drunk all the time, and always runs around with other women.  They have two children together, and if it wasn't for that, they would have separated long ago.  I counseled the poor lady and told her that they needed to get saved, and married for their children's sake.  She said she'd talk to him about it, and invited me to return to witness to him.

 

August 30th 2004 Monday                 Off to Tegucigalpa

 

                At three this morning I awoke and took my shower.  Afterwards, I was off to Tegucigalpa to have the truck fixed.  As I drove down the winding, mountainous roads, I saw the full moon off in the distance, such a beautiful sight!  I also saw some wildlife, as a bunny rabbit hopped in front of the car (unfortunately I ran over it!)

                 Upon my arrival in Tegus, I took my car to Mr. Otto Martinez, and then prepared to go to the Cancer Center in a taxi.  Luckily, Bro. Bob Baker was in town and called me to see what I was doing.  I told him that I was about to go to the Cancer Center, and he volunteered to pick me up and take me around with him to run errands.  Gladly I agreed, and he came to Otto's for me.  Together we drove all over Tegucigalpa paying bills, buying supplies, and passing out tracts. 

                We also journeyed to Larach (the largest Hardware store in Tegucigalpa) for some supplies.  While we were there, we happened upon another Missionary named George Johns.  Bro. Baker knew him and introduced me to him.  We talked for a while, and he said that his ministry was to help "Brigades" come down and work in Honduras.  He also preaches and teaches here. 

                As we were talking, he told me something very funny.  He said that a church in the U.S. contacted him and said they'd like to come down for a Mission's trip.  However the deacons of the church smoked, and they wanted to know if they could have a place where they could go to smoke in private, so that no one could see them!  George said he wouldn't allow smoking at all, and that they need not come if they wanted to smoke!  I was in complete agreement with him and his decision, but also aghast that they could be so brashly carnal and so open about their sin!  Their attitude was, "We would like to do something for the Lord, but would like to sin while we are doing it, and we would sure like the missionary to help us in hiding our sin!" Yet, the more I think about it, the more I realize that it's only typical for the Laodicean Church Period.

                At the Mall we came upon Anita Hurst.  She was in a huff, and very agitated, as someone stole her purse earlier in the day.  They eventually found it, as well as two others, with everything inside except her cash.  She was not happy, and was very angry, thus we tried to console her.

                Anita went with us to lunch, and we had a "falling out."  Anita took her anger out on me, and told me I was "mean" and that I say things that I shouldn't, which "offend" people at times.  She said I should be more "thoughtful," and that I should think before I speak, as what I say isn't always (in her words) "nice."  I reminded her that in Psalms 119:165 the Bible says, "Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them."  But it was to no avail.  She could not understand (like so many today) that those who are offended have the problem, not those that they are quick to label "the offenders," for true love casts out fear, and can overlook bad qualities in others.  As we walked through the grocery store together, I thought about my Lord Jesus Christ, and how his words of truth offended me at first when I read them in his book, albeit I knew they were right.  But when I looked at him on the cross, dying for me and shedding his precious blood, I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that he really did love me.  Thus, I concluded it's not the words that one speaks that show love, rather the actions that they perform.  This I told Bob afterwards, and he agreed.

                The rest of the day I spent with Anita helping her, and watching her purse as we went shopping.  She called me "worthless" on several occasions, but that's okay, as I have peace with God, and I love his law, so it didn't offend me.  I even agreed with her, and told her that I am indeed worthless if it were not for the grace of almighty God!  Jokingly, I added, "But at least I'm not mean enough to call someone 'worthless!'"  She just laughed.

At two o'clock, Bro. Baker and I met with Mr. Denis Gomez, the young man who sent me the letter claiming he was "suicidal."  He claimed to have trusted the blood of Jesus Christ to save after reading the tract I gave him, but was struggling with some things that happened to him in his past.  His story was that he was raped in the market as a child when his Mom left him in the care of another.  Ever since then he's said that he hasn't been able to get over it, and wants to only die, rather than live on in such a wicked world.  Bro. Baker and I counseled him for over an hour about the importance of continuing on for the sake of Christ and reaching others with the gospel.  We stressed to him the importance of not living in the past, but to look forward to the future putting God first in everything.  Before dismissing ourselves, we had a word of prayer, and I gave the young man a Bible and some tracts.  He seemed comforted, and said that our encouragement helped him.

 

August 31st 2004 Tuesday                 A Day in Tegucigalpa

 

                First thing this morning I went to breakfast with Bro. Bob Baker, his wife, and Anita.  We ate at a wonderful place, and had a great window seat overlooking the Presidential Palace. 

                After breakfast, I did some shopping with Bob and his wife Connie before they drove back home in the afternoon.  The rest of the day I spent relaxing at the Cancer Center, enjoying my "mini-vacation."

                In the afternoon I bought myself a Subway sandwich, and one for Ms. Anita Hurst as well.  She was very thankful.

 

September 1st 2004  Wednesday                      Nothing to Do!

 

                I had nothing to do today but just wait to hear from Otto about my car.  I called on several occasions and they told me that it wasn't ready, nor did they think it would be anytime soon.  Thus, I made the Cancer Center my abode, and spent some time studying.

                I also watched a DVD that I ordered from Preacher Doug Stauffer about Mel Gibson's "The Passion."  It was an exposé on his movie about the crucifixion of Christ Jesus, and showed without a doubt that Mr. Gibson is a very superstitious Roman Catholic.  Not only did I learn that the movie was made to be a "continual mass" for those that watch it, but I also learned that it's purpose was to portray the Catholic "Stations of the Cross" so that all good Catholics could enjoy it.  I also learned several other things I didn't know about the film, such as: the woman that played "Mary" in the film was a "porn star," the man who played "Jesus" (who's initials are also J.C.) requested a "Mass" ceremony every day during the filming of the movie stating, "I can't play Jesus without having Jesus inside of me!" and that he also carried a piece of wood with him that was supposedly from the cross of Christ.  Not only that, Mr. Gibson said that he believed that only the Catholic Church can save, and all those outside the Catholic Church will be eternally lost, including his own wife!

                How anyone could call themselves "Christian" and watch that film, and yea even praise it, and use it for an "evangelism tool" is beyond me.  It's very twisted, and very Roman Catholic.  It also filled full of Roman "tradition" rather than pure Bible.  I've made up my mind not to watch it, and to be faithful in preaching against it!

 

September 2nd 2004 Thursday                          Workman's Comp Office

 

                As I waited at the Cancer Center today, Bro. Herb Prince and his wife came.  I spent some time with Bro. Herb and we went to breakfast together.  He told me about his plans to have a graduation soon for his Bible Institute and invited me to come.  I told him I'd try to do so.

                Later in the morning, I went to the office of "Workmen's Compensation," to find out the rules and regulations about having someone work for you, and paying them what they call "prestaciones."  Castillo asked me to give him his prestaciones for the time he worked for me, so that he could use the money to pay for his wife's soon impending gallbladder operation. (The Prestaciones are what an employer payes when he fires an employee). I told him I'd look into it, and go to the governmental office to see how much it was.  What I learned was that the work laws here in Honduras are a mixture of the work laws of both Mexico and Columbia.  Every worker must be paid each year for 15 months of work, rather than only twelve.  In June and December, they must be paid double, and the prestacion (also called the preaviso) is another month's pay on top of that.  To me that's ridiculous, as that's paying someone for three extra months that they haven't worked!  But such are the ways of Honduras.  The governmental official that attended me gave me a sheet of paper with the calculation of how much I owe Don Castillo for the two years and eight months that he's worked for me.  It totaled up 4,336.78 lempiras.  I also have to give him thirty days off each year on top of that, so I'm really paying him for 16 months, even though he only works eleven!  How strange!  No wonder Honduras is a third world country, as the businesses are going broke just trying to pay their workers!

                Bro. Mike Lane filled in for me today at Quebrada de Lajas at my request, and late in the evening he called me and told me that he led two people to the Lord there after services.  That was a blessing to hear!

September 3rd 2004 Friday                                More False Sects From America

 

                I left early this morning to run some errands in town.  I've been putting them off thinking I'd get my car back, but unfortunately, they haven't finished with it yet. 

My first stop was the American Embassy to try to get the paperwork I need to vote in the Presidential Election of 2004.  While standing in line, I overheard a conversation of two religious groups, which claimed to be "Missionaries."  One sect was Mennonite, and the other group was Charismatic or Pentecostal.  They struck up a conversation with each other, and the Mennonites asked the other group what they believed about salvation.  The "Pentes" (as we call them here in Honduras) responded, "We believe in the baptism of the Holy Spirit by the evidence of speaking in tongues."  To the which the Mennonites responded, "Well, we believe in baptism and the Holy Spirit, but not in tongues." 

The Charismaniacs then continued by stating, "We believe that one can lose their salvation too!"  Then they asked, "Do you believe that as well?"  The Mennonites reply was, "Well, we believe that no one can ever really know that they are saved!" 

As I stood in line and waited, I thought to myself, "How sad it is to see these two false religious sects from my home country coming here to Honduras to preach and teach a lie to the people."  What a crying shame!  One group is going around telling people, "You can lose your salvation!"  While another group is preaching, "You can't ever know you are saved!"  Where is the "good news" in that???

I can only hope that people will see through their lies and trust in the shed blood of Christ Jesus alone to be saved, know it, and realize that they can't lose it, because God bought it, gives it, and keeps his own eternally saved!    

                Later in the day I walked down the road to the Money Exchange place to cash a Money Order (the only place in Honduras that will do it for me).  As I was walking down the sidewalk, a Honduran woman passed me and yelled, "¡Adios guapo!" (Good Bye Handsome).  I just shook my head and walked on.  Not only is Honduras full of false religious sects, but it is a country of lustful people, whose thoughts are on carnal things continually.

 

September 4th 2004 Saturday                                           Finally, I get my truck!

 

                I finally received my vehicle today.  However, they didn't do much, and what they did actually made things worse.  They took the doors off to replace the pins, however, after removing all four, they said they could not "find" the right pins for my specific vehicle.  So, they put the doors back on and left it.  The only problem is that now my power doors lock don't work as they did before.  Thus, in typical Honduran fashion they actually made things worse rather than better.  And it was a wasted trip!  At least they didn't charge me anything, so I'm happy about that.  They told me that the next time I come, they will make the pins for me, and install them, but I am rather leery of this.  I'd rather have the right ones that are made for my vehicle so I don't have any more problems in the future. 

                Being as it was in the afternoon when I finally finished running a few more errands, I decided to spend one more night at the Cancer Center, and leave early in the morning. 

 

September 5th 2004 Sunday                                              A Long Day!

               

Last night before bed, I received a message from Bro. Mike Lane asking me to come and help him tomorrow morning to pick up some people for Bible Institute which starts Monday.  I told him I would, so I left at five this morning for La Esperanza.  I arrived there at eight-thirty, and then unloaded my groceries.  Then it was off to Ojos de Agua.  A young man named Matilde went with me, and together we arrived where Bro. Mike is holding services around ten-thirty.  (It is a good three hour drive over long, mountainous, dirt roads).

                After their services were over, I took all the women with me, and Bro. Mike took all the men with him, and together we drove back to the Baptist Camp.  There we dropped everyone off, and I went home to eat a quick lunch before heading out to Quebrada de Lajas to preach.

                Upon my arrival in Quebrada de Lajas, I found Blanca was home, but Martir was not.  She invited me for lunch, and I had a wonderful meal of chicken soup full of homegrown vegetables.  Eventually Jose Martir showed up and we talked for a while before going down the hill to our little building for services.  I taught on the subject of "Lo Que Cada Cristiano Verdadero Sabe" (What Every True Christian Knows).  My text was 2 Timothy 1:7-14.  My points were that a true Christian would and most certainly will know 1. "Que La Salvación es un Regalo de Dios" (That Salvation is a free gift of God) from verse nine, 2.  "Que El Tiene La Redención de su Alma" (That his soul is redeemed) from verse nine and twelve, 3.  "Que El Espíritu Santo Mora Adentro" (That the Holy Spirit lives within him) according to verse fourteen, and 4. "Que Dios Quiere Que Le Haga su Voluntad" (That God wants him to do His will) from verse 9.  I also told them about the Charismatic and Mennonites that I overheard talking last week, and how neither one knew that they were saved, or had the Holy Spirit, and how sad it was that they both called themselves "Christians" but didn't even know if they had Christ Jesus as their Saviour.

                After service, I drove home, and then walked to the Baptist Camp for services.  I lead songleading, and afterwards Bro. Mike Lane taught on "Baptism" again and explained that it's the first step of the Christian walk with Christ, and although it doesn't save anyone, it's good to have the testimony that one has obeyed Christ Jesus after being saved.

                After service, I went home exhausted from a long day of traveling, preaching, and helping others in the work of the Lord.   Before bed I noticed I had only four chicks that hatched.  All the others died.  However the four I had were healthy and adorable little fur balls.  I only hope nothing tries to eat them!

                                               

September 6th 2004 Monday                              First Day of Bible Institute

 

                First thing this morning I went to Castillo and showed him how much I owed him according to the report from the Labor office.  He wasn't pleased, and thought that he deserved more.  Thus, I gave him a very large tip for all he's done for me.  He also told me, "If I hadn't been here watching the house for you, you most certainly would have been robbed, as there are people around here that are interested in your house and what you have inside."  I told him I appreciated his loyalty, honesty, and hard work, and I gave him a raise for the next year, promising to continually raise his salary with each coming new year.  This made him happy, and he was glad to accept.  His exact words were that he was "satisfecho" (satisfied).

                The rest of the day I spent working on cleaning house, and printing Bible Institute Material for my students.  Bro. Mike asked me to teach this entire week about the "Roman Catholic Church" from one to five in the afternoon.  The students are from Ojos de Agua, Sapatillo, and Lajitas.  My first class went well, and I found that I have a total of 12 students, all of which are Lenca Indians.  Their reading and writing skills are not the best, but they seem to be coming along slowly. 

The Pastor from those areas is named "Sabino."  I was very shocked to see that sometimes he spelled his name as "Sabino," and other times he wrote it as "Savino."  (The B and V in Spanish are the exact same sound in Honduras).  I understand that they confuse the b and v, but to not be able to spell your name, nor know which way it is spelled exactly is quite strange. 

                Of my Fifteen lesson plan, we completed three lessons before we closed.  This whole week, from Monday to Friday, I'll have to teach three lessons daily, before completing the course.  I only hope they will get something from it, and they'll learn more about why the Roman Catholic Institution is the great "whore" from Revelation 17.  And, I hope the class will help them to witness to their very catholic neighbors, family, and fellow countrymen.

                I also gave away a Bible to each of my students, so we would all have the same version.  Many of them had the perverted NIV Spanish Bibles (which Thomas Sweeney gave them), as well as the corrupt 1960.  I gave them all a 1909.

 

My Bible Institute Students

 

September 7th 2004 Tuesday                                             A Trip to Town

 

                I went to town today to run some errands and buy some paper.  I have used all the paper I have printing my Bible Institute material.  There are over 60 pages total in the 15 lesson course.  Multiply that by the twelve students I have, and that adds up to quite a lot of paper! 

                I also bought a piñata today for "Children's Day," which is Saturday.  We have decided to celebrate it on Sunday.  We will have "dinner on the grounds" as well as a day for the children.  Everyone's invited, and it will be interesting to see if anyone comes.

                Later in the afternoon, I ran across Raphael Martinez again.  He is now working on the bus route from Colomoncauga to La Esperanza and back again (His Bible School is closed for the time being).  The bus leaves at two in the morning and arrives in La Esperanza at six.  Then it leaves again at one in the afternoon for Colomongauca, and doesn't arrive there until five in the afternoon.  What a trying job! 

                Raphael asked me for some Bibles to give to several people that don't have them, and I told him I'd take him some the next time I'm in town.

                Downtown I saw Erick Sanchez while I was doing some shopping.  He was with another missionary named Marshal Edwards from the Moody Bible Institute, of whom I met once before.  They were spending the day together shopping and fellowshipping.  

                Upon my arrival home, I quickly began printing some more of my Bible Institute material.  The pages that are only words print very quickly, however the pages with pictures, drawings, and photos take a considerable time to print, and I have to wait patiently for them to finish.  It's worth it though, as each student will not only have the entire course to teach again, but will also have pictures for others to see.

                At Bible Institute we studied from one o'clock to five, with a thirty-minute break starting at three.  I taught them all about paganism, and how paganism mixed with Christianity to produce "Catholicism."  We finished lessons four through six.

                After class, I went home and stayed up late unto the night printing more pages of material for my students.

                       

September 8th 2004 Wednesday                       An Argument with Erick Sanchez

 

                Erick Sanchez appeared at my house this morning bright and early asking for the final grades for those at the Lenca Bible Institute from the class I recently finished there on "Church History."  I gladly gave him the material, and told him how well the students understood, and enjoyed the class.  He was pleased to hear this.

                We had breakfast together, and studied some Bible.  We also got into an argument about "Incorporation" of a local church, of which I am very much against (I don't believe the church should go to the world system to ask for permission to be recognized as a church), and he is very much for.  Here in Honduras this policy is called a "Personaria Juridica," and both Erick Sanchez and Bro. Mike Lane swear it is a great thing, as it keeps any one person from owning the property of the church, and being able to use it or sell it for their own personal needs or gain.  I am well aware of the "pluses" of the "Incorporation" of local churches, but I wished to give Erick the "minuses" or "problems" with it. 

First it is going to the world and asking them for permission to exist and be recognized officially by the government.  This to me is a great blasphemy, and according to my studies in Church History, this only opens the door for Satan to come in and either destroy, try to run, or close down the local church and persecute it's members.  Not to mention it also opens up the church to "taxation" (as in America) and this completely destroys the most ancient and sacred Baptist doctrine and practice of "Separation of Church and State."

                I further stated to Erick that to "incorporate" one's church is to make the government the head and authority of it rather than the Lord Jesus Christ, and Christians ought to be honorable and holy enough (which is usually not the case nowadays) that they can be trusted with the goods of the church and distribute them to those in need, while still making sure they are cared for (like in Acts chapter 5).  Erick's response was that "Nowadays Christians cannot be trusted, and buildings, furniture, hymnbooks, property, etc., can not be put into the hands of only one individual, for they could just up and sell it if it was in their name, and tell the church, "Too bad!  It was in my name and I did what I wanted with it!"  I agreed with this, and told him that I too have seen such as this happen, and it is not only a sad testimony for a Christian, but a crying shame that someone would want to steal from God.  Erick continued that because of this it was "good" to put the church property, building, and goods into a "corporation" name where no one person could be the owner of it, rather the people all together are owners of it.

                I told Erick in practice that his opinion and way of doing things might sound good, but that a true Christian should be trusted to not sell that which belongs to God.  I also reminded him that the sin of Laodicea was that she was "rich" and "increased with goods" whereas the early Christians were not, and didn't have much to worry about.  Also, they didn't have property, and church buildings, they met in homes and were continually persecuted and had to run for their lives until they could find other Christians to congregate with, usually in secluded areas or in other homes.  Why?  Because the government was always persecuting and killing them!

                It was to no avail, and I couldn't persuade Erick that "incorporation" or a "Personaria Juridical" were not the right thing for a Christian to do.  He thought it was okay, as it was a "means to an end" of the "kingdom of God."  I finally told him that the reason that the government wanted to register churches, was so that when the Roman Catholics come into power, they would have a list of anti-catholic denominations in order to close them down (as they've done throughout history in every country in the world!)  But it was to no avail.  Erick had his mind made up that he's willing to "register," "incorporate," and "go to the government as an authority" to set up a church, rather than just trust in God.  Thus, we agreed to disagree, and left it at that.

                In the afternoon, I went to the Baptist Camp for my Institute class (where I taught four more lessons.  One of which was about the Spanish Bible, and why the 1602 TR New Testament should be used, as it's the purest N.T. in Spanish).  My stomach was very queasy, and I had diarrhea most of the morning.  However, I was able to make it through my four hours of teaching without any problems.  But upon my arrival home, horrendous stomach pains overcame me and I found myself on the stool for quite sometime.  Because of this I didn't go to church, but rather stayed home to suffer my affliction alone.  Late unto the night my stomach hurt, and I found no relief except in the consolation of sleeping for several hours at a time before awaking with even worse pains.

 

September 9th 2004 Thursday                          Stomach Pains, Bus Station, and Stuck in the Mud

 

                I awoke this morning feeling a little better, albeit my stomach was not well.  This did not keep me from reading my Bible and taking a shower before fixing breakfast, however.  Afterwards, I drove into town to run some errands.  I also picked up my pistol at the Gun Repair Shop.  I gave the man in charge a tract, and told him I witnessed to his wife, and would like to have a Bible Study with him as well.  He looked down at the ground and his face became red and he replied, "That would be nice, as I really do need to quit following the bad, and go with the good."  I hope in the future to have a chance to witness to him.

                From the Gun Repair Shop, I went to look for my old buddy Raphael at the Bus Station.  I gave him the two Bibles he needed and then spoke with him.  He told me he was lately married to a young lady there in Colomoncuaga.  This was very unexpected news, but I'm happy for him.

                After returning home, I ate a small lunch and then went to the Bible Institute to teach.   I taught lessons eleven through thirteen, and we took a thirty-minute break in between.  We quit early, however, so that I could go to Quebrada de Lajas for service.  I arrived there at five o'clock, and drove down the same road of which I had my disaster the other day.  It looked dry, but I was gravely mistaken as I ended up sliding into a ditch at the very bottom of the road.  I had to have a man pull me out with his car, an aggravating, and embarrassing situation.

                To add insult to my injury, on the way back up to the church, my car again sunk into the mud on the right side.  (Recently they dug a trench there and put in a water line about three feet deep.  They put all the dirt back on top of it, but didn't pack it down, so I drove right into the ditch without even knowing it.)  Thus, I left it, and walked up the road to service.

                Service went well.  Santos came and brought his cousin.  Martir and Blanca were there, as well as many children.  I preached on "Who Jesus Christ Is."  I showed them that without a doubt, Jesus Christ was God manifest in the flesh (1 Tim. 3:16).  I then showed that Jesus Christ is the 1. "Creador" (Creator) from Ephesians 3:9, 2. "Salvador" (Saviour) from Titus 2:13, 3.  "Gobernador" (Governor), and 4. "Juez" (Judge) from Rev. 19:11.   I tried to make it a point to them to see Jesus as the creator of all things, who loved us enough to die for us to save us, and who now wants us to be obedient to him.  I also, for the sake of the unsaved, showed that those who are not saved, will be judged by Him at the Great White Throne Judgment (Rev. 20:11-15).

                After service, some of the people walked up the road with me to my truck and helped me find a 4x4 vehicle to pull it out of the mud.  We were successful in our quest, and I was out of the ditch in no time.  How strange it is to me that a small, little Toyota Pickup can pull my huge Chevy Suburban out of the mud.  But it sure had the power to do it!

 

September 10th 2004 Friday                              Finishing Bible Institute Class

 

                Most of the morning I spent resting with continued stomach pains.  Later in the morning I went to Mike Lane's house to have some papers bound with his plastic binding machine.  They also invited me to eat with them.  Ramon Galeano, the other Bible Institute teacher this week, also came for lunch, and we all fellowshipped together over a tuna fish sandwich (which surprisingly agreed well with my stomach).

                From one thirty until four, I taught the last several lessons about the Roman Catholic Church.  Afterwards, I gave them time to ask me questions.  They asked about many different things, and I answered them all with scripture.  One of the most amazing questions was when one asked, "What's the name for the leader of the church?  Is it Pastor or Jehovah?"  I told them that it was most certainly "Pastor."  However, they said that the Indians where they live are so unlearned and biblically illiterate, that they call the Pastor "Jehovah."  I asked them why, and they quoted the verse from Psalms, "Jehova es mi pastor" (Jehovah is my Pastor), thinking that the Pastor of the Church and Jehovah were the same title for the Pastor of the church.  I quickly set them straight that Jesus is Jehovah (or el Señor), and he is the Shepherd of the Body of Christ, while at the same time a "Pastor" (a man) is the leader of the local church.

                When our class came to an end, several people stood up and thanked me for teaching them the truth.  They said before they were very stanch Catholics, but after having studied for a whole week about what the Catholics teach, and how it differs from the Bible, they said it was like coming from darkness to the light, and they could actually see that "Romanism" offers no hope whatsoever to a dying soul!  Three men in particular seemed to have benefited more than any of the other students, and they swore that they would go back to their villages and teach others the truth of the gospel, and actively continue witnessing to them, being careful to show them from the Bible why the religious Roman Catholic system is a lie of the devil.

 

Those At the Baptist Camp for the Week

 

September 11th 2004 Saturday                         Resting and Hearing Some Good News          

 

                I rested today realizing how wonderful it was to not have to get up early and go to teach in the Lenca Bible Institute.  When I finally did get out of bed, the electricity went out, and I spent most of the day without power, finding that I had nothing to do, except read and pray.

                It rained off and on today about fifteen times.  The longest it stopped for was about thirty minutes, and then it started up again.  There were mud puddles everywhere outside, so I stayed inside and enjoyed not having to go anywhere.

                Mike came over late in the afternoon when the rain let up.  He told me that eight people got saved last night in services.  Some of them were the women folk that came with the men for the Bible Institute class.  However, some of them were my students for the classes last week.  I guess teaching them about how Catholicism is "Anti-Scriptural" helped to plant a seed in their hearts that sprang forth into eternal life.  What a blessing!   Mike said, "It seems God seems to be moving mightily here!"  I didn't reply, but in my heart I was saying, "It's all because you are using the pure Bible in Spanish now, and because you are preaching the right Gospel of faith in the Blood!!!"

 

September 12th 2004 Sunday                            Paper Plates, the Piñata, and Preaching

 

                I left the house at ten-thirty this morning after my daily Bible reading, a shower, and a late breakfast.  Immediately I drove up to the local supermarket to buy paper plates, plastic cups, and some necessities for our special "Dinner on the Grounds" day.  Actually it was "Children's Day" (on Friday), and we used it for an excuse to celebrate together at church.

                Upon my arrival at Quebrada de Lajas, I put everyone who was willing to work cooking the chicken I brought.  Everyone else brought rice, beans and tortillas.  While they were working, I took some of the children with me, and we went visiting.  I was careful not to make the same mistake in taking my truck down the muddy road that has vexed me so many times.  Instead I went on foot, and we visited many homes inviting people to services.

                At the Hernandez house, I found Santos and his "woman" Argentina, as well as his brothers and sisters.  They said they were waiting for me to come in my truck, but I quickly reminded them of my mishaps, and told them for posterity's sake, I decided to walk, rather than take a chance on doing any more damage to my vehicle. 

Together we walked up the hill to our little meetinghouse, people joining us along the way.  The hot, tropical sun beat down upon us furiously, and I could feel my skin soaking up the burning rains.  (No wonder the people here are so dark.  The sun slowly roasts them on a day-to-day basis).

                Before we began, I took some young people with me back down the mountain into town to buy some Coca-Cola.  As we drove along, they commented on how bad the road was (it's very much washed out now with so much rain), as well as pointed out the houses of some of their friends and acquaintances.

                When we returned, I was quite surprised to find over 45 people sitting out on the lawn of the church house waiting for me.  Lunch was almost ready, so after a word of prayer, we began serving them.  The beans were hard as they weren't cooked long enough, but no one seemed to complain.  It looked as though we would not have enough food, but as Jesus miraculously feed the 5000, we to had enough to feed everyone, and even had a small bit left over.

                After eating, we strung up the piñata and began swinging at it.  Who first invented such a vile custom as beating a small paper object with a rod is unknown to me.  But the more I think about it, the more pagan it becomes.  Not only do they make the thing into the form of an animal, but after they beat it senseless, they enjoy eating what comes out of it.  Looking at it from a strictly Humanistic standpoint, it's easy to take it back to a more uncivilized time, when men beat animals with cubs ruthlessly and then feasted on their entrails. 

However, it is still fun, and the children enjoy it.  Albeit, they do get carried away at times.  For instance after giving everyone their turn at "wacking" the poor defenceless paper monstrosity, we let it down to the ground and all the children jumped on top of it and began punching and kicking and pushing each other trying to grab the last couple of pieces of candy.  It was a "knock down drag out fight" for a while there, and I had to get in and start pulling bodies out of the huge mass of children crumpled on top of each other.  It reminded me of watching football games as a kid, when all the players would jump on top of each other after the ball had been whistled dead until there was a huge pile of bodies in a gigantic mound in the middle of the field.

                Upon calming down the masses, we all went inside and had service.  I preached about the subject of "What Salvation Is," my opening text being Jude 1:1-3.  I showed that salvation is 1. "Gratis" (Free!) from Romans 6:23, Ephesians 2:8,9, Romans 5:14-18, etc.  Then I continued by saying that salvation is 2. "Grande" (Great and Big), being careful to show them that it encompasses forgiveness of sins (Col. 1:14), salvation from Hell (John 5:24), and an eternal home in heaven (John 14:2), and all eternity with Christ Jesus above (1 Tes. 4:13-17).  And finally I told them that salvation was 3. "Gozoso" (Joyful) from Roman 14:17: Romans 5:9-11; and Philipians 4:4.  I was careful to tell them that a Christian has joy and peace in Christ Jesus, and unlike lost people, he has something to truly be happy about!  I closed with Lucas 16:19-26 with the rich man and Lazarus.  I showed them the rich man tormented in the fiery pits of the damned, and stressed to them their need to be saved, as a lost person will never have true joy or peace in this life, nor in the life to come. 

Afterwards, I witnessed to Eddie hard about salvation, and he said he needed to get saved, but he just wasn't ready yet.  I asked him what was keeping him from getting saved, and his reply was, "A whole lot of things."  I did the only thing I knew to do, which was tell him I'm praying for him, and that if he ever wanted someone to talk to, I'm there for him.  He thanked me, and then went on his way.

                Service at the Baptist Camp went well also.  Before we began, Mike asked anyone if they'd like to give a testimony.  Bernardo, one of my Bible Institute students last week, stood up and thanked me publicly for teaching him about the evils of Catholicism, and told how much my class helped him to see the light.

                Bro. Mike preached on "Some Sacrifices In the Bible" from the book of Hebrews.  He began with sacrifice of Christ Jesus on the cross (Heb. 9:26), and stressed the importance of trusting only in the shed blood of Jesus Christ, plus nothing, minus nothing, alone to save one's soul from Hell.  Then he proceeded to show the sacrifice of Abel (a lamb) in Hebrews 11:4, and how this was a type of Jesus Christ (the lamb).  He also showed the sacrifice of praise (Hebrews 13:15), as well as the sacrifice of our bodies to God from Romans 12:1,2.

 

September 13th 2004 Monday                                           The Spanish Bible Issue, Again

 

                It's becoming very apparent what my ministry is the more I continue in the work of the Lord.  I know I'm not a good Pastor, as I don't have much patience with people.  Nor am I a good "church planter" as I'm not good at motivating people to build a church.  Neither am I good at visitation, discipleship, or winning souls.  Undoubtedly, my ministry is that of "straightening out those that are in apostasy."  This includes getting people to see the Bible Issue in both English and Spanish, and encourage them to use the purest word of God, while rejecting all "new versions" which are nothing more than "Catholic Counterfeits" from the "Vaticanus" and "Siniaticus" (Catholic manuscripts).  But it would also include teaching people the Bible, and trying to get them straightened out on their doctrine. 

                What God will do with me in the future, I do not know.  But, I know my heart's desire is to do only two things: travel and preach.  If God will let me do this, I'll gladly follow his direction.  But until then, I'll try to be faithful here in Honduras with the work in Quebrada de Lajas, as well as helping Bro. Mike Lane.

                Speaking of Bro. Mike, he came over today to speak with me.  I have my doubts about him, as his mind is not completely made up about the 1602 TR Spanish New Testament.  He continually tells me that the 1960 Spanish Bible is still a "good version," although he doesn't use it anymore.  And he cautions me from saying bad things about it.  But how can it be "good," when it takes out completely the doctrine of "imputation," calls Jesus Christ "Lucifer" (Lucero), takes the word "Hell" (infierno) out of the entire Old Testament and the book of Revelation, follows the English RSV (which Mike is very much against), and more?  No, I am very much against the 1960, and I do not call it "good" for how can something bad be good? 

                It's interesting to me that so many American Missionaries claim to be KING JAMES ONLY in English, but when it comes to Spanish they "waffle" on what they believe.  How can they say the KJV is the only pure version, and then turn around and say there are many different good versions in Spanish (when those different versions aren't based on the same texts as the KJV)???  What is that?

                Anyway, I can only pray and continue to show him the truth and hope that he will make strong his conviction for the 1602 TR, as the pure word of God in Spanish.

 

September 14th 2004 Tuesday                                          The Spirit of Laodicea

 

                I am growing weary of "Laodicea."  This church period is the most horrid of all, and apostasy makes me sick.  As each passing day goes by, I become more and more aware of the problems and blatant rebellion of this most vile of "church" periods.  It makes me want to quit, but when I dwell upon it, I find that something stirs within me, making me want to preach even harder against it!

                With each passing day here in Honduras, I question whether or not I should be here.  As I watch other Missionaries, I see more and more they use "gimmicks" rather than good sound Biblical teaching to reach the masses with the truth.  But more than that, I find that the multitudes just don't care about the things of God, and to preach to them is like talking to a barbwire fence!  They don't listen, and they stick you when you're not looking!

                The more I dwell upon "Laodicea" the more I want to get away from the ministry and forget about the whole rotten mess.  If God's word is right (and I believe it is), it's all going to end in apostasy anyway, and I find myself thinking, "What's the use?  I can't change how it's going to turn out, so why even try?  Yet the more I continue down the road of the Christian walk, the more I see that the ministry is not changing the world, it is making an impact on one life at a time.  It is little by little saving one here and one there from the jaws of the devil, and teaching them to live for the Lord.  It's not an easy game, and it seems like I can't win, but at least I can try to score some points before it's over.  Thus, I only continue on for the sake of that "one more" that must be rescued from Hell and apostasy.

                In the evening at our Bible Study class, I taught from 1 Corinthians chapter fifteen.  We started with "The Gospel" in verses one through four, and it took us an hour just to finish studying those four verses.  The five parts of the Gospel are as follows:

 

1.        Christ Died                                     (vs3)

2.        For our Sins                                    (vs 3)

3.        Was Buried                                     (vs 4)

4.        Rose Again                                      (vs 4)

5.        According to the Scriptures            (vs 3,4)

 

I went through each step slowly and thoroughly showing them the importance of how each one hinged upon another.  If the Gospel were only that "Christ died" then no one would pay much attention to it, as people die all the time.  If the "good news" was only that Christ died for our sins, then that wouldn't be too spectacular, as people have died for the sins of others on many occasions.  If all we had to preach was that Christ died for our sins and was buried, then that would not raise too many eyebrows, as men are always buried after death.   But the fact that Jesus "rose again" after three days changes things.  Now we have a story that one might think twice about.  It's not every day that one who was dead "lives again."  This just doesn't happen.  When people die, they stay dead!

But thank God for the fifth one!  Not only did Jesus die for us, was buried, and rose again, but he did so "according to the scriptures!"  It would be easy for me to tell a tale of a man who died and came back to life, and many might hear it, but they would be very sceptical of it, had they not seen it themselves.  Why?  Because my words are the words of a man – a sinner, and I could very well be telling a tall tale.  However, when the "scriptures" (God's words instead of man's) tell us that it's so, and prophesied it would happen thousands of years before it actually did, then we have quite a different story!  (Especially when over 500 people saw him after he rose from the dead as it says in verse six).  How can any man deny it, especially when God said it was so?  To deny the Gospel is to deny the very God of heaven, and to call him (and the Bible) a liar!  Thus, I gladly accept the Gospel of Christ, and I'm not ashamed of it (Rom. 1:16)!

 

September 15th 2004 Wednesday                                     Independence Day

 

                I awoke early this morning at the sound of drums at the school down the road.  Today is the National Day of Independence from Spain (in 1821), and there are always parades, and bands performing. 

                Upon arising from my slumber, I began to read my Bible and think about "the existence of God."  As I pondered on God, I came to only three logical conclusions about the existence of God.  There are as follows:

 

1.        God is the very last of his kind, and the only one left of his race.

2.        God has always been and always shall be.

3.        God is a created Being.

 

Of these three possibilities, the first one leaves us with several questions, such as, "Then where did 'his kind' come from?" and, "Why are there no more?"  The answer to these questions can never be found!  For the only way to know for certain would be to have lived during the time of the so-called "others" and no one ever has.

                The third possibility begs the question "Who then created God?"  The answer to this question can also never be found!  For to say that he's created is to make him by very nature not God, for God cannot be a created being, as he is the Creator, not the created.  So, the only way to know for certain the answer to number one and three is for one to have been before God, and no one ever has.  Thus, it's impossible to ever know for certain whether or not number one and three are the truth.

                That leaves us only with number two, which tells us that "God is one of a kind, and has always existed in eternity past and will always exist in eternity future."  This is the only possible solution! But it must be accepted by faith.  The other possibilities can not be accepted at all, for no proof can ever be produced.  However, this needs no proof, only faith!  Thus, I believe in a God that has always been.  He is not the last of his kind, for he is "one of a kind," for by his very nature he is God.  And he can't be a created thing, rather he is the Creator of all things.

                In the afternoon, Bro. Mike Lane came over and visited.  He asked me on Sunday if I'd teach the class today, and I said I would.  When services began, I taught on "What the Bible Says about Satan."  I showed them how he was the anointed cherub that covereth (Ezek. 28:14) before he fell, and how now he is Satan (the adversary), and the Devil (the accuser).  I also taught them that the sins that lead to his downfall were pride (Isa. 13:13) and envy (Isa. 13:14).

                       

September 16th 2004 Thursday                        Those Who Don't Want You to Go to Hell!

 

                After checking my email, I drove out to Quebrada de Lajas, where I spent some time visiting.  The more I deal with the people, the more I find that I'm only beginning to understand them.  They are so unlearned, and for this it's hard to know what they are thinking.  Also, they are very laid back, and usually don't listen well to what one says, nor take it to heart.  Also, all they want to do is complain about their problems.

At one house I spoke with the family for over an hour.  Don Mario was there and he talked to me as well.  Our conversation was about many different things, but mostly what they endure each day in their country – poverty and crime.

                In our evening service, we didn't have a big crowd.  Martir was the only adult, and the rest were teenagers and children.  I taught on the subject of "Those Who Don't Want You to Go to Hell!"  The message was not my own, but one that I found on a gospel tract.  (This being the first time that I didn't preach an original message in Quebrada de Lajas).  The points were 1. God doesn't want you to go to Hell! (2 Peter 3:9).  2.  The Angels don't want anyone to perish!  In fact, they rejoice when someone gets saved (Luke 15:7).  3.  People in Hell don't want you to go there.  (Like the Rich Man in Luke 16:27,28).  And finally, 4. Christians don't want you to go to Hell. 

                Upon finishing my sermon, I brought the point home by saying that there are people all around you that don't want you to go to Hell!  For there are those above you (God and the angels), those below you (those burning in Hell), and those around you (Christians) that want you to be saved! 

Adonai was in service, and his is not saved yet, but he chose to reject yet again the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.  What a shame!

 

September 17th 2004 Friday                              Visitors, Pizza, and Hurricanes

 

                Erick Sanchez awoke me this morning with a rap on my bedroom window.  I arose and invited him in.  His reason for coming was to ask me to help him with "deputation."  His mission gave him permission to travel around and ask for monetary help for what he's doing for the Lord.  He'll soon have to travel to many different churches and try to raise support.

So we spent several hours on the computer working on making his slide presentation.  I also made him a nice Letterhead for correspondence.  We also worked together making him a Ministerial Seal like mine.  It turned out nicely.  It is as follows:

 

 

                While we were working, Catalino from Quebrada de Lajas came by to visit me.   I invited him in, and he watched as Erick and I continued to work on the computer, putting the finishing touches on his slide presentation.

                Afterwards, Erick invited us to the new Pizza place up the street.  Together we all drove up there in my car and ordered a supreme.  While we waited, they had CNN on the television there, and I heard word about Hurricane Ivan, and how it destroyed the I-10 bridge not far from where my Father lives close to Pensacola, Florida.

                Thus, after lunch I went home and called my Dad's home number to see if he was okay.  The phones were down, so I couldn't get through.  So, I called Ed Conley's cell phone (my Dad's friend and mine) and left a message.  A few minutes later he returned my call, and told me a little about the storm.  He also let me speak with my Dad who was with him.   Dad said water entered our house downstairs about three feet deep, and that the storm surge washed away our metal shed with all our tools in it. 

                What a horrible storm!  In all the years we lived there on Garcon Point (about 28), never has a hurricane done so much damage.  My prayers are with them as they struggle to fix the damage done.

 

September 18th 2004 Saturday                                         Bible Institute

 

                Bible Institute began anew today.  My class this semester is on "Pastoral Counselling," but I prefer to call my class, "Preacher and His Problems."  This is a class that I wasn't too particularly fond of, but I accepted it, as I knew no one else would teach it correctly, fearing that would use worldly techniques, rather than pure scriptural teaching.  My motive is that of stressing to them the importance of "counselling" a person from the Bible, rather than going to the word and using "Secular Wisdom" or "Psychology."

                Thus, I started with showing them verses from the Bible on how we ought to deal with others, making sure they understood that the scripture is the most important thing.

                I also gave them the "Seven Main Rules of Counselling Others" which I came up with from my few short years in the Ministry, and from the learning I received from others with much more experience.  They are as follows:

 

1.        Always listen as much as possible before speaking (James 1:19)

2.        Invite the person to a peaceful place where you can speak "face to face" (2 John 12) so there are no distractions.

3.        Never counsel a woman alone!!!  Always have her husband present, and he cannot be, have your wife with you (1 Thes. 5:22)

4.        Always pray before you speak (1 Thes. 5:17)

5.        Always answer with verses of scripture and with sound doctrine (1 Peter 4:11) asking them to read the verses it if possible.

6.        Never counsel anyone to go to the world or the world system to solve their problems.  Always stress to them to put God first.  (This includes not going to court! 1 Cor. 6:1-7)

7.        Don't make them dependent on you.  Teach them to trust in Christ Jesus and his words, not you and yours (1 Cor. 3:21-23)

 

After class, I went home and had a late breakfast.  At three, the Cordoba boys came and we went visiting.  We met many people, gave out many tracts, and invited many people to church.  I always introduce myself, and ask those to whom I'm speaking to give me their name.  I've found that people in Honduras have some very strange names.  But today I heard the strangest name thus far, when an old man told me that his name was "Visitación" (Visitation) Garcia.  I thought to myself "With a name like that, he should be visiting instead of me!"

                In the evening, I took Eleazer and his sister Zarahi and two of the Cordoba boys, with me to service at the CAM church several miles from the entrance to the mountain road that goes to Quebrada de Lajas. (This is the church where I married Martir and Blanca).  Plutarco and Esperanza are in charge there, and I spoke with them last week, telling them I'd like to visit their Saturday services, and possibly teach them about the "Seven Mysteries in the Bible," in the future, one each Saturday.  I was told I'd have to speak with Melkis (another strange name) Maradiaga, who is a student at the CAM Bible Institute in Siguatepeque (an hour away), and who is the "encargado" (one in charge) of the church.

                I quickly discerned that no one was in charge of the church there.  Mr. Melkis (a nice young man) thought I was there to preach, and after singing, I was called to do so.  I voiced my surprise in being asked to preach, as I was only there to visit, but I was more than happy to do so.  My message was on "What Every Church Needs," that I preached in Ojos de Aguas a few months back.

                I began with the Gospel, and found that no one in the church knew what it was, or where it was.  What a sad commentary on the CAM school.  (Mr. Scofield would roll over in his grave if he knew, as CAM was started by C.I. Scofield).

                Afterwards, I spent some time teaching about how salvation is by faith in the blood of Jesus Christ, and how there are many different denominations out there preaching anything and everything to be saved except the blood.  But the Bible says that one must trust the blood of Jesus Christ (Romans 3:25).

                I also got off on a tangent and began preaching against some things that make me so very angry in this, the Laodicean, church period.   I started by telling them that most the churches in Honduras that aren't Catholic are supported by American Money, and if the Americans were kicked out of Honduras, most of the so-called "Evangelical" churches would fold.  Further I continued by telling them how damaging it is to support a Honduran Pastor with American money, as it then makes him dependent on dollars, more than on God, and makes his job an "occupation" rather than a calling.  I also barked against "building church buildings" before building the people, giving Missions the authority that belongs to the church, and people calling themselves "Missionaries" who aren't actively engaged in trying to win others to Christ and plant churches.  Instead they are busy building "Food Distribution Centers," "Orphanages," "Gymnasiums," etc.  I told them, "The problem with America is she has too much money, and she is busy trying to throw it around in "feel good" projects.  They think they are helping others, and then they feel good themselves.  However, most of "Modern Christianity" only is interested in the physical needs of man rather than the spiritual.  This is a grave error and a costly sin!

                After service, I asked more about the testimony of the church, and how it started.  The story I was told was very sad, and it proved exactly what I had been saying.  They used to meet in the downtown area, and they had about thirty adults that came to service.  Afterwards some "Americans" came in and started throwing their money around, all under the guise of "wanting to help the ministry."  They bought property outside of town and gave it to the church.  Later they then built a church for them on the property, and gave it to them.  Quickly they moved to the new building.  However, most of the people that used to attend services downtown, didn't come anymore, as it's too far outside of town for them.  Thus, the work is almost completely non-existent, and they are now working to try to keep it from closing.   Thus the fruit of "Laodicea" strikes again!  A church house is built, but the people are not.  That is why I'm so dogmatic about building people (preaching and teaching) rather than building buildings!

 

September 19th 2004 Sunday            No One For Service

 

                I awoke at six this morning and prepared myself to go with Bro. Mike to Ojos de Agua and Zapatillo for the Baptism service.  I was told to meet Bro. Mike at seven o'clock.  When I walked up to my neighbour's house, they said he was at the Baptist Camp.  When I went there, he was nowhere to be found.  He had left me.  So, I walked back home.  (I found out later that he had gone to my house while I was going to the Camp, and we just missed each other).

                Service at Quebrada de Lajas was anything but good.  No one showed up except for a little five year old girl.  I waited for over thirty minutes, but to no avail. This after our little chapel was completely full the week before!  There wasn't a seat left in the house then, but now they were all empty!

                About three forty-five, Martir showed up (better late than never), and asked where everyone was.  I told him no one came.  He seemed a little discouraged, and tried to console me by saying, "Maybe they thought it would rain, and that's why they didn't come.  I quickly corrected him by saying, "Nope!  It's cause I'm not giving them anything today, that's why they aren't coming."  He then agreed that was more than likely the reason.  But I refuse to make the people dependent on the Missionary.  And I doubly refuse to teach the people to come to church for a handout!  They must learn to come because they love God's word and want to hear it, or it's better that they don't come at all.  By God's grace, I will not become a "Laodicean Missionary" who uses food, games, gimmicks, etc. to get a crowd!  I want God the Holy Spirit to lead, and I want him to change the people and put in their hearts the desire to come.

                Last week was different.  We celebrated a "special" day.  Also, I didn't give them something for nothing.  I asked them to bring food as well, and made them cook it for all of us. 

                In the evening service, we had a good crowd, and several visitors came that we visited yesterday.  Bro. Mike said that things went well in Sapatillo, and that he baptized 16 people, and lead one to the Lord.

                Bro. Mike preached on "Baptism" again (he seems to be wearing that sermon out!), and afterwards he took everyone home in the rain (myself included).  Tomorrow he leaves for the states for several weeks, and I go to Tegucigalpa for several days.

 

September 20th 2004 Monday                                           Off to Tegucigalpa

 

                I left at four this morning for the big city of Tegucigalpa.  When I arrived, I went straight to the Cancer Center to drop off my things, and then to Burger King for breakfast.

                At eight, I dropped my car off at Otto's and asked them to fix the problems with it. The power door locks didn't work properly after they "fixed" it the last time, and said they would repair them for free.

                The rest of the day I spent at the Cancer Center waiting for them to call and tell me that the vehicle was ready.  They finally did inform me around four o'clock that they finished, and I ran up to the shop for my car.  As I was leaving, I found that my power mirrors didn't work (Although they did yesterday).  So I called back and told them about that.  They said, "Bring it in tomorrow and we'll fix it!"

                       

September 21st 2004 Tuesday                                           More Car Problems!

 

                First thing this morning I took my truck back to Otto's and left it in their care to fix the mirrors.  Otto had to run some errands, and asked me if I desired to go with him.  I accepted, and together we spent most of the day driving all over Tegucigalpa looking