Saturday, May 22, 2021

        Gospel: God's love to Man 

                                    By Max Solbrekken, D.D.

"Tell me the story of Jesus 

Write on my heart every word 

Tell me the story most precious

Sweetest that ever I heard." 

"Tell of the cross where they nailed Him

Writhing in anguish and pain 

Tell of the tomb where they laid Him 

Tell how He liveth again.

"Love in that story so tender 

Sweetest that ever I see Stay,

 let me hear while you whisper 

Love paid the ransom for me 


In summing up my worldly achievements in more than eighty years of life, I am at a loss to find anything worthwhile to report, except what I have done to make Christ known as the world's only Saviour and Healer!

Without the love, care and nurturing of family, of course, nothing worthwhile would be possible. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the only True Foundation of a loving, caring and believing family!

I am convinced that all else - higher learning, social standing, wealth, political aspirations and good deeds – pale into insignificance when compared with the "cross-work" of Jesus!

Like St. Paul, I am persuaded that all else is "dung" and that life's most important accomplishment is to believe, receive and propagate the Gospel of Christ to "fallen man", for the glory of God.

To be a "vessel of honor" and a channel of God's blessing ministering His grace, goodness and power to a lost, sick and suffering world is mankind's greatest achievement!

All else is vain and for naught, when examined under the scrutiny of God's Word and in the light of eternity!

Taking into consideration the many things I have seen and experienced, people I have met, together with all the books and journals I have read during 50 years of "world evangelism", I still wonder at the grace of God to me.

I join the hymn writer in humbling myself - in His presence - with this confession:

"Nothing in my hand I bring

Simply to Thy cross I cling

Oh, take me as I am

My only plea, Christ died for me

Oh, take me as I am."

There is no one as wonderful as Jesus. Everyone who hears His gospel and is impacted by His power, must realize that He was, is and always shall be WONDERFUL!

We stand in awe as we consider His supernatural conception, birth, life, death and resurrection. As well as the outpouring of the Blessed Holy Spirit upon His Church for the past two thousand years!

The words of the prophet - uttered 700 years before His birth at Bethlehem - under the inspiration of God - should not surprise us.

"His name shall be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace..." (Is. 9:4)

Max Solbrekken

Edmonton, 2020

                                        CHAPTER 1                                                 WORLD'S GREATEST LOVE STORY!

"Tell me the story of Jesus

Write on my heart every word

Tell me the story most precious

Sweetest that ever was heard.

Tell how the angels in chorus

Sang as they welcomed His birth

                                  Glory to God in the Highest

                              Peace and good tidings to earth.”

"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son. That whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life". (John 3:16)

The story of God's great redemptive plan is without equivocation, the greatest love story ever told.

No human drama - ever so tender, touching and grand - could even begin to compare with God's love for mankind.

As a child I heard a gospel song that made a profound impact upon my young heart. Here are the words:

"Into a tent where a gypsy boy lay,

Dying alone at the close of the day

News of salvation we carried. Said he,

Nobody ever has told it to me!

"Tell it again! Tell it again!

Salvation's story repeat o'er and o'er

Till none can say of the children of men

Nobody ever has told me before.

"Did He so love me a poor little boy

Send unto me the good tidings of joy?

Need I not perish, my hand will He hold?

Nobody ever the story has told!

Bending, we caught the last words of his breath

Just as he entered the valley of death

God sent His Son; Whosoever said He

Then I am sure that He sent Him for me.

"Smiling, he said as his last sigh was spent

I am so glad that for me He was sent

Whispered, while low sank the sun in the west,

Lord I believe! Tell it now to the rest."

"Tell it again! Tell it again!

Salvation's story repeat o'er and o'er

Till none can say of the children of men,

Nobody ever has told it before."

The urgency conveyed by that song, which I learned at Daily Vacation Bible School - at our Lutheran Church in rural Saskatchewan - made a profound impact upon my young heart.

I remember weeping as we children drove our horse and buggy home from church that summer day, so many years ago.

Even then, I secretly hoped that one day, I would be able to preach the gospel to other little gypsy boys. Throughout the years, it has been my great privilege to proclaim the glad story of Jesus to this world's unfortunates, gypsies included.

In 1964, I preached at the U of S, and the Beatnik Club in Saskatoon. And in 1966, I reached the head hunters in Northern Luzon, Philippines. I also was privileged to preach to the large crowds of Gypsies in Portugal and Spain.

By God's grace, I was allowed to minister to 500 prisoners on death row in Kandy Sri Lanka, and to the infamous Pavon Prison in Guatemala in 1985. A door was opened for me at Stu Hart's Wrestling Event in Edmonton in 1970. Only God held that key!

                     US MISSIONARY NICK GRUICK!

In 1972, God opened the door for our ministry in Haiti. More than thirty thousand people attended the powerful Spirit-filled services at the Du Valier Stadium at Point- au- Prince, Haiti.

U.S Missionary Nick Gruick invited hundreds of preachers to sponsor our effort. We were also operating a children's Home at Grande Guave, Haiti at that time as well. Were they ever excited as they entered to the enormous Stadium!

A year later we returned for...”the most powerful crusade ever held in Haiti with 50,000 persons in the Stadium,” according to Rev. Nick Gruick!

The January, 1973 Haiti Miracle Crusade was well organized, with 535 pastors registered for the Minister's Seminar. Pastor David Minor wrote:

The climazing meeting, however, was on Thursday when I spoke to the ministers on the baptism of the Holy Ghost. Over 40 received the Baptism of the Holy Ghost, speaking in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.

                         KEN BECAME VERY SICK!

Everything was going so well, and then the devil struck us! My 14-year-old- son, KEN became seriously sick. He had been perfectly well and then suddenly he was stricken with a unusual, serious asthma.

Medical authorities wanted to take him to the Hospital but I refused saying, “Ken will stay with me at the Hotel.” Rev. Nick Guick located the most knowledgeable foreign Medical Doctor in Haiti and he was able to dispense a medical drug, that I believe proved effective.

The medical doctor was also a born again believer in Christ and we joined our faith together for Ken's miracle! I stayed with Ken in constant prayer as he struggled to breath! Whenever I had to leave his side, I employed a born again Nurse to look after him.

I had made an agreement to purchase 4 hours each evening from Radio Haiti, blanketing the nation with our crusade. Each evening before I left for the Stadium I would say: “Ken, I am leaving for the crusade now. I will be on the Radio and I will pray for you during my preaching. And I'll see you soon. I love you my son.”

A number of times during my message, I would say, “God is with you Ken. Don't be afraid. Jesus was wounded for you on the cross. By His stripes, you are HEALED. In Jesus' name.” Amen.

My interpreter didn't know what was happening, but just kept on interpreting and the Revival moved ahead. Multitudes gave their hearts to Christ!

This went on for several days and nights! Then, it broke and Ken was healed! He had started as our official Crusade photographer and returned home well. Hallelujah! And he has never been afflicted with it since! Praise the Lord!

Ministering at the Women's Prison in Chernigov, Ukraine in 1992 to 100 inmates who had killed their husbands was sad, and victorious as many sought God for forgiveness!

And while writing this (1992), I am preaching in Russia, Ukraine, Latvia, Poland, Bulgaria, Romania and other Eastern European countries. How I thank God for that opportunity! Please Note: I compiled most of these notes during the lonely after the midnight hours in the countries of the former Soviet Union.

                                      THEN JESUS CAME!

The world was hopelessly doomed and condemned to an eternity without God. Then Jesus came to, “seek and to save that which was lost.” (Luke 19:10)

The Bible says, "For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. He that believeth on Him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the only begotten Son of God.

And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds should be manifest, that they are wrought in God." (John 3:17-21)

For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a Ransom for all...” (1 Tim. 2:2-6)

                              CHRIST'S BLOOD FREED US!

Only the great love of The Eternal, and Christ's sacrifice on Calvary was able to free us from Satan's grasp. There was no other way!

And as it is appointed unto men once die, but after this, the judgment. So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation.” (Heb.9: 27, 28)

Isaiah made it so clear: "But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes are we healed." (Isaiah 53:5)

Jesus the Messiah, died upon Golgotha's hill - between two thieves as a common criminal - just like Jewish preachers had prophesied centuries and even millennia earlier.

No wonder Zechariah ben Joseph (John the Baptist) cried out, "Behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sins of the world", when he saw Him. (John 1:29)

Just like the sacrificial lambs which had been slaughtered on Jewish altars for centuries - a type of the coming Lamb of God - Jesus died on the cross, for the sins of the entire world.

This classic song tells it like it is:

"Oh love of God, so rich and pure

So measureless and strong

It shall forever more endure

The saints and angels song.

"Could we with ink the ocean fill

And were the sky of parchment made

And every man a scribe by trade

To write the love of God above

Would drain the ocean dry

And could the scroll contain the whole

It would stretch from sky to sky.

"When hoary time shall pass away

And tongue and pen of men shall fall

When wicked men refuse to pray

Upon the rocks and mountains call

God's love so pure shall still endure

The saints and angels song."

It's hard to fathom God's love! It is past finding out. His grace is unlimited and His mercy reaches out to all men everywhere...even to those who hate and despise Him and His gospel. It encompasses the entire world!

His great love engulfs even those who persecute His emissaries and blaspheme His great, holy and lovely Name. It encompasses the entire world.

It is no wonder we sing songs like:

"This is why I love Him

He gave Himself for me

To purchase my salvation

They nailed Him to the tree

At last He cried 'Tis finished'

He bowed His head and died

Oh, what a sight for sinners

My Jesus crucified.

"What an awful price He paid

To pardon you and me

When in death He fully paid the cost,

O Soul so far astray, Come & plunge today

In the blood that stained the old

rugged cross."

No wonder that St. John, overcome by the goodness of God, exclaimed, "We love Him because He first loved us". (1 John 4:19) Amen.

                       THE CRY OF THE SYNAGOGUE!

Even though the Jewish people obeyed the Law of Moses and kept all the feasts, they still felt condemnation for their sins. Once a year on the Day of Atonement, the Rabbi would stand outside of the synagogue and shout, “Let One innocent come and atone for the guilty.”

Year after year, 'The Cry of the Synagogue' was shouted out but no one answered the call, because all men are sinners. The Bible says, “All have sinned and came short of the glory of God. Being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus;

Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His BLOOD, to declare His righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God.” (Rom.3: 23-25)

Then one day John the Baptist pointed to Jesus Christ, shouting, “Behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sins of the world.” (John 1: 29)

The SINLESS ONE had come! The long awaited Jewish Messiah had arrived who would REDEEM the world through the sacrifice of Himself!

                             GOD'S LOVE FOR A SUICIDE!

William Cowper (1731-1800) lived in London England. He believed the Gospel but could not believe that Jesus Christ would save him. On a number of occasions he attempted suicide, but failed repeatedly.

On one occasion, he lifted a glass of deadly hemlock to his lips. His lips trembled, his hand shook and the glass fell onto the cement floor.

Leaving his home, he ran out onto the Bridge over the Thames River. He said that when he sought to cast to himself into the water, “ I was strangely restrained.”

On one other occasion, having hung himself, friends came by and cut him down. He was brought to St. Albans Insane Asylum outside of London. He picked up the Holy Bible. The Word of God came alive in his hand. He read:

 "Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His BLOOD, to declare His righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God." (Rom.3:25)

                                              CHAPTER 2

                              GOD'S LOVE FOR US ALL!

In ancient Greece there lived a wise old man and Master of philosophy, called Simonides. One day a group of philosophy student asked permission to see him personally. They said: “Simonides, thou great learned one, we have come to ask you this question, “Who or what is God?

The old gentleman stroked his beard and answered, ''I will need seven days to think, study and philosophize on that deep subject.'' A week later the same group of philosophy students were told that the subject matter was so large that he needed 365 days to arrive at a definite answer to that awesome question.

Again the philosophy students approach the legendary, man with the same question: “We men of Greece have waited, most Noble Simonides for your valued answer to the question, “Who and What is God?”

Simonides slowly rose to his feet and said, “I am sorry to disappoint you. After more than one year of studying, philosophizing and thinking on this great subject, I do not know and I cannot cannot tell what or who is God!”

                         GOD IS GREATER THAN ALL!

St. Paul says: “For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the Gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ would be made of none effect. For the preaching of the Cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved, it is the power of God.” (1 Cor. 1: 17, 18). Amen.