by Ivor Powell

Anxious People...Who Wanted to Know
Ivor Powell
Luke 12:16-20; Luke 18:18; Acts 2:36-37; Acts 9:6; Acts 16:32-34

It was my privilege for four exciting years to be the national evangelist of the South African Baptist Church. I shall always be indebted to the people who bestowed upon me that inestimable honor. I had completed my training, pastored a church for eight years, and believed I was competent to answer the challenge. I quickly discovered in the new country that I had much to learn-in fact, I knew nothing. During my stay in that wonderful country, I met distinguished people and explored strange places. My two books Black Radiance and Silent Challenge explained what I discovered. I also learned to appreciate the viewpoints of others who did not share my faith.

Within a Jewish synagogue in Pretoria a very fine gentleman explained his faith. He informed me that I was a sinner who needed forgiveness. When I asked how this could be accomplished, he pointed to an inscription on the wall and said, "You must keep the ten commandments."

At the Feast of Ramadan in Durban, I was given a place of honor. My gracious host explained that I was a sinner, and to be forgiven I would be required to do certain things. Pointing to five pillars that supported the roof of the building, he said: "The pillars represent the five great laws of the Moslem faith: (1) each day you must say 'The Lord our God is one God, and Mohammed is his prophet'; (2) daily, at the call to prayer, wherever you might be, you must kneel to pray, facing the east; (3) two and a half percent of your income must be given to the poor; (4) you must observe the feast of Ramadan; (5) once in your lifetime, should it become possible, you should visit Mecca."

A Hindu priest took my wife and me into one of his temples. His teeth had been filed downward to points; they resembled bars guarding a cave. He was very courteous and proud of his appearance. He spoke in broken English and explained the many gods ...

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