Saturday, April 25, 2009

26 Hours in New York: The Preacher

We headed for Wall Street - and we found Pastor Benny.
I'm still not quite sure how Pastor Benny latched onto Kissy Missy, but when I turned around, he was explaining how Jesus could save her immortal soul.
Pastor Benny had run a storefront church that had burned for five days in the wake of 9/11. But faith had kept him going.
Ordinarily, I will thank a street preacher for his time and his faith, but something about Pastor Benny's face drew me in. He has a face that says New York, a beautiful face.
His dogma is interesting - a mix of messianic Judaism, it appears, and evangelical Protestantism. He mentioned "66 books" of the Bible - the number of books in the Protestant canon, but talked about translations directly from Hebrew.
We met a small number of his followers in a deli - and promised to send him a photo.
And, of course, he wanted to know if we were saved. The answer: "As the Bible says, I am already saved (Rom. 8:24, Eph. 2:5–8), but I’m also being saved (1 Cor. 1:8, 2 Cor. 2:15, Phil. 2:12), and I have the hope that I will be saved (Rom. 5:9–10, 1 Cor. 3:12–15). Like the apostle Paul I am working out my salvation in fear and trembling (Phil. 2:12), with hopeful confidence in the promises of Christ (Rom. 5:2, 2 Tim. 2:11–13)."

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