Public Reading of the Bible

Project Ezra is an outreach ministry dedicated to the public reading of the Bible. Believers simply present the Word of God by reading it aloud in a public place where there are people gathered or walking by. This is a wonderful ministry because it gives glory to God through the public exaltation of Christ and the proclamation of God’s Word. This Bible reading often provides the reader with an opportunity to then preach the Gospel to groups (crowds) in the public venue, or to share the Gospel one on one with people who stop to listen and then ask questions.

On Saturday God gave me the opportunity to read Isaiah 53 to ten teens and homeless older people hanging out downtown, which led to opportunity to share the attributes of God, the Law and the Gospel of Grace, and also answer questions regarding the Gospel, the Deity of Christ and the Atonement. One teen asked me, “What is sin?” Others asked about doing “religion”, such as “being a good Catholic”, in order to be justified. Later five more teens joined the group and asked what we were talking about. “We’re talking about how we can have our sins forgiven.” They listened and asked questions for almost an hour. I was overjoyed to see their humble attitude as realization of sin appeared on their faces, and as they heard of the hope of the Grace of God in Christ.

Here is a video of a sister reading a Psalm in public, which was followed by Gospel preaching by another believer. This is an evangelism ministry that can be done alone or with other brothers and sisters. Pray first for His power and courage before you go and ask the Lord to lead you to the people He wants to hear the Word of God. May God be glorified as His Word accomplishes what He desires.

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14 thoughts on “Public Reading of the Bible

  1. Prepare now for the fact that it is only a matter of time when public Bible reading, preaching, witnessing, Bible distribution, and all Biblical evangelism will be made illegal per International (Global) Law. With the Global Government and the One World Religion manifesting, the Copenhagen conference, the World Religions forum, the push for a U.S. Dept. of Peace, and other national and global laws in the works…. we should work now, and prepare to keep working, in faith, humility and love, regardless of the consequences, once these laws are declared by the leaders of the antichrist world system.

  2. Loretta,
    Your above comment is very true. Time is very limited.
    Public reading of scripture is powerful. He said that his Word would not return void. I am always encouraged when His word goes out that there are many hearers that will not hear it otherwise. We certainly live in a time and day when there is a famine of hearing The Word of God.
    Thanks for this post! I hope that many others will get out and share The Word in public.

  3. Hey Richard… amen to your comments! Public reading of the Word of God does many things.. I have observed people stopping to stand perfectly still to really listen- with a stunned/ shocked/ convicted look on their face. I have observed people walk on faster, biting their lips, in determination to get away from the hearing of it…and I’ve observed people go into a screaming violent rage (demon manifestation) upon the hearing of the Word of God spoken in the open air. Amazing…..

  4. Yeah, Loretta, reading the Word of God publicly is something that we have done, my co-laborer and me. We would go to downtown Portland, Oregon, Saturday Market, or to Pioneer Square. We would take turns reading directly out of our bibles. When one was reading, the other would be silently praying and looking at everyone who passed us in the eye if possible, with a smile on our face, and ready to welcome anyone. We always worked as a team of two. We would always read one gospel cover-to-cover, and then either the book of Revelation cover-to-cover, or assorted prophets like Isaiah, Jeremiah, or Daniel. Sometimes we’d read whole epistles, several of them, since they are so short.

    We blogged a lot about our experiences witnessing in this way, but we did not call what we were doing a name like Project Ezra, or even have a regular schedule of going. We just went whenever we felt drawn to do it. When we got downtown we would often walk the streets reading the Psalms out loud until we were shown the spot from which to read the Gospel and Revelation. We read Revelation at least every other time, because it is like a fifth gospel and ordained to be read aloud, so that the readers and the hearers can obtain the blessing of it.

    My co-laborer, at that time a 23 year old Baptist, was repeatedly criticized for going downtown to read the Bible in public, especially because he was doing that with a 55 year old Greek Orthodox. Eventually, because he would not stop going out with me, he was told to leave his church and find somewhere else to fellowship. On my end, the Greek priests were aware of our ministry and never said anything to criticize it. Sometimes people and priests from my church actually stopped and listened to us reading the Bible in public, thanking us for doing it, as did many other people who stopped and listened.

    We have not done this ministry for the past year or longer, but continued witnessing by having public Bible study in Greek and Hebrew at local coffeehouses. At the moment, my co-laborer is back in Kansas getting to know his fiancee better, and to be married during Easter. When they return, he and I will likely continue our public Bible reading ministry in one form or another.

    We called our going downtown or to coffeehouses and reading the Bible “forays” and “sorties” into the world, and so many of our blog posts describing what we did have titles with those words in them. Our ministry started actually in a popular counter-cultural coffeehouse in Portland’s northwest neighborhood, and this link takes you to a post where our earliest forays are described by my co-laborer: http://cost-of-discipleship.blogspot.com/2008/12/crossbearers-pilgrimage.html

    God grant the increase to the good seed that you are planting by reading the Word publicly, and may others take heart to do the same, but only with Jesus.

  5. hello Romanos!Thank you for sharing about your public Bible reading ministry. It is wonderful to hear about others’ adventures getting the Gospel out into the world.

    I’ve noticed that most of the criticism against any kind of public “high visibility” evangelism ministry comes from fellow Christians (or, at least, church people). Interesting.. May God bless your work with your co-laborer brother as you represent Christ through the public reading of His Word.

    Last summer with a large outreach in San Francisco, I was in a group of three, my girl friend and I, and a brother, and we walked down the streets of SF, while the he read the Bible loudly for all to hear, and when anyone commented or questioned, we all stopped to talk and share the Gospel with them. It sure was an experience!
    I have one pic from that day, here on this post.

    https://witnessingencouragement.wordpress.com/2009/10/08/those-who-have-not-heard/

  6. Hi Loretta. This is a very encouraging post as I’ve been impressed to “turn it up” in the coming year. Time is simply running out and as you mention, it will eventually be considered “illegal” to proclaim the gospel in public venues. (The powers that be will probably label it as “hate speech”) Your initial comment is completely in line with what I’ve been sensing.

    Another observation that I’ve been noticing over the past year, which has also been touched on, is the increase of opposition from professing saints. One guy lured me into an endless debate which resulted in my not getting into the north side of Kalamazoo that day. I saw a bible in his hand and initially thought “Praise God; a fellow laborer.” But he wanted to argue and I ended up wasting over an hour by the bus station while unsaved souls were all around us.

    The sad part of this is that, whgile souls are perishing every day, precious few saints seem to understand what’s at stake beyond a theological level. And as Jesus told the disciples “the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service.” May we all be diligent in the coming year as this age is wrapping up quickly. Thanks for a most encouraging post. I plan to create a link to the “Project Ezra” site.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.

    timbob

  7. One of the things we learened pretty quickly: Stay on task!
    We also made a point of absolutely never arguing, but simply reading the Word aloud publicly.

    On the rare occasion when a lunatic would come up and start yelling profanities at us, we would simply stop reading and wait for him to get over with it, and since we did not respond or defend ourselves, the attacker would just go away. After he left, we would start reading again.
    Since there were two of us, one of us could sometimes pray quietly with someone who came up asking for prayer. We never say, “Okay, I’ll pray for you.” We always pray on the spot. If the person requesting prayer did not want to do that, which very occasionally happened, we’d let them go.

  8. timbob thank you for the very insightful comment- in agreement to all said. I’ve got to get back to your blog- and internet fellowship with you and the others! Missing everyone as God put me on a blog fast for a few years… I thank God in advance for the fellowship with co- laborers in far away places that He will provide by His grace this year. Bless His wonderful Name, Jesus! grace and peace to you.

  9. Romanos, yes I have also observed this (as i stated above) several times when going out with groups for public preaching of the Word/ the Gospel. I see it as spiritual opposition and refer to these as “detractors” (or distractors). Usually the brothers preaching will also just patiently, quietly and humbly endure it, and then continue ministering to those listening when the rant is over. It is a good opportunity to remember to keep on preaching, proclaiming and witnessing (if it is possible) –boldly yet humbly– in the face of the enemy’s attempts to shut it down. I’ve seen enraged/crazed people get in the face of a preaching brother and scream at them while the brother takes it with love, grace and patience. Witnessing this courage and submission/obedience to God (in responding the way Jesus instructed us to) is an example of great value to the rest of us sheep. God bless your ministry to the ones He is sending you to, Romanos!

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