As i was reading the discussions between Dr. Harold Sala and Mark Ellis in Guidelines commentary on March 7, 2008, i can't help but share the story read by Dr. Sala from his soon-to-be-released book, Why You Can Have Confidence in the Bible. He read the story of Gaylord Kambarami, the General Secretary of the Bible Society, who tried to sell a New Testament to a man in Zimbabwei. Here's the script:
Few people ever struck a stranger deal than did Gaylord Kambarami, the General Secretary of the Bible Society, who tried to sell a New Testament to a man in Zimbabwe. As Gaylord talked with the man, he could see he was interested. The stranger, however, was not interested in the content of New Testament but was eyeing the size of the pages and the texture of the paper. It was just the right size to make cigarettes. In fact, he told Gaylord he wouldn’t buy it, but if he gave it to him, he would take it and use the pages for cigarette paper.
“I understand,” Gaylord replied. “I will make a deal with you. I will give you this book if you promise to read every page before you smoke it.” Pleased with himself that he indeed had the better end of the bargain, the man agreed to do so. Gaylord gave him the New Testament and the man walked away.
Years passed. Then one day Gaylord was attending a convention in Zimbabwe, when the speaker on the platform recognized him in the audience. Pointing to him excitedly, he said, “This man doesn’t remember me, but I remember him.” He explained, “About 15 years ago he tried to sell me a New Testament. When I refused to buy it he gave it to me, even though I told him I would use the pages to roll cigarettes.” He continued this strange testimony saying, “I smoked Matthew. I smoked Mark. Then I smoked Luke. But when I got to John 3:16, I couldn’t smoke anymore. My life was changed from that moment!”
Now the former smoker is a full-time church evangelist devoting his life to showing others the way of salvation he found in this little book which has just the right size pages to roll cigarettes. And Mark, I have eleven stories like that, rather thrilling ones, of the lives of people that have been transformed by this book.
If you want to read some excerpts from Dr. Sala's new book, go to http://www.confidenceinthebible.com/
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