“Any church can be easily trained to hold them”
God is restoring His power to His people for us to complete the Great Commission—proclaiming the gospel to the world and discipling all nations. Where do we find “the world?” We know that we do not find the world in our churches, but there we find mostly those who profess Christ. Unbelievers are found outside the walls of our churches—in their homes and in public places outside our churches.
It is pleasing to the Lord when we dare to take the gospel outside the church, and to proclaim it boldly in the spirit of Elijah. It was Elijah who dared to proclaim atop Mt. Carmel that the Lord is the true God, and that he would demonstrate it. The fire that descended from heaven in full view of everyone in response to Elijah’s challenge was the evidence that Elijah’s God was the true God.
The New Testament equivalent of what Elijah did is to preach the gospel outside in the world and to demonstrate in a public fashion that Jesus is the Son of the only true God by performing signs and wonders in His name for everyone to see.
One way to do this is by holding a “healing outreach” in a public place, for example, in a park or shopping mall. Any church can easily be trained to do this. This was actually done in Houston’s Chinatown district.
There is a large shopping mall called Hong Kong City Mall patronized by the Asian community of Houston—mostly Chinese and Vietnamese. Most of these are Buddhists.
In the beginning, the Elijah Challenge set up a table with Christian literature underneath a sign which read “HEALING PRAYER” in Vietnamese, Chinese, and English. Our purpose was to draw Buddhists and unbelievers to us to hear the gospel.
People with infirmities, both Christians and unbelievers, saw our sign and requested prayer for healing. Between eighty and ninety percent of those prayed over immediately experience God’s healing touch and testify that they feel better or are healed. If they are unbelievers, we seize the opportunity, like Peter at the temple gate in Acts 3, to share the gospel of Christ with these precious souls. In this manner, many Buddhists and unbelievers have come to know Christ as Lord and Savior. A local Vietnamese Baptist Church, which has now been trained to take over the outreach, follows up these new believers.
100 souls accept Christ every Saturday at Mall Outreach of the Vietnamese Baptist Church in Houston
Twice in the early 2000s The Elijah Challenge was invited by Pastor Khanh Huynh to equip the believers of the Vietnamese Baptist Church in Houston, Texas. Now (2008) at their weekly Saturday Outreach held at Hong Kong City Mall, an average of one hundred souls accept Jesus Christ. Currently this church is known as the fastest-growing Vietnamese church in North America. Some of the earliest testimonies from the beginning of the Healing Outreach before Pastor Khanh and his Baptist believers joined us:
- For two months, Siu Wang had rheumatic fever along with pain in her joints—especially her ankle and back—and could not sleep at night. Her doctors did not understand what kind of arthritis she might have, and the medication they prescribed for her did not help at all. Last Sunday she and her husband traveled to Houston from Austin for her weekly acupuncture treatment at the Hong Kong City Mall, but after the session she was still in pain. She happened to pass by our table in front of the Hong Kong Food Market and saw our sign which said, “Healing Prayer.” Lucy approached Siu as she browsed over the literature on the table, asking if we had any tracts on healing. We didn’t have any, but Lucy offered to pray over her. We had her sit down. She told us about the pain in her ankle and back. I laid my hand on her ankle and prayed over her, after which she got up and tested her ankle…she said the pain had pretty much gone. Lucy quickly shared the gospel with her and asked if she wanted to receive Christ. She replied that her friends had also shared Christ with her, but that she wanted to read the tracts first. Then she shared about her back pain, and Lucy laid her hand on her back to prayer over her. Her back pain was much less, and she was very happy feeling so much relief. She left to rejoin her husband who was still shopping in the Food Market. When her husband saw her walking toward him without pain, he asked, “What happened to you? You have no difficulty walking!” “Yes, a pastor prayed over me, and that’s why I feel so good now!” she replied. They returned home to Austin that afternoon.
Siu was well—no more pain in her body, the fever was gone, and she could sleep at night! She called her Christian friends and shared with them about the pastor in Houston who had prayed so earnestly over her and how she was healed. She and her husband wanted to believe in Jesus Christ, regretting that she didn’t accept the Lord on Sunday after she was healed. But she didn’t know how to contact us. On one of the tracts she had taken from our table she found the name and number of a Chinese pastor in Houston. She called him and recounted to him what had happened to her. He gave her our telephone number, and she called us Thursday night). Over the telephone with Lucy, she and her husband accepted Jesus as her Lord and Savior. Later Siu Wang, completely healed, was baptized in water along with her husband. They have joined a large evangelical Chinese church in Austin.
- Mrs. Diep Huynh anxiously surveyed her bloated tummy which throbbed with pain. Because of some disease, she had watched herself gradually swell from a size eight to a size sixteen. Finally she went to see a doctor. The physician at the Hong Kong City Mall in Houston told her she needed a colonoscopy for an accurate diagnosis, but his initial written diagnosis was a tumor that had made her tummy as hard as a rock. Diep, an immigrant from Vietnam who did not speak English, did not have insurance or the money for this expensive treatment. She left the doctor’s office in bewilderment, looking for someone in the Mall, anyone—who could comfort her fears and tell her what to do.
She approached our Outreach in the Mall area, drawn by a sign which read “Healing Prayer” in Vietnamese. My teammate Jordan and I laid hands on her and ministered to her in the name of Jesus. She literally felt something happening—moving around—in her stomach. And there was the definite sensation of liquid leaking out and wetting her pants. Instinctively she reached down to touch her pants, but they were dry. At that time she felt her pants beginning to fall down, and she quickly grabbed hold of them to keep herself from certain embarassment. Her tummy had instantly gone back to its original size; if there had been a tumor, it had vanished. The pain in her tummy was gone. She had been completely and instantly healed in the name of Jesus Christ! In gratitude, Diep accepted Christ as her Lord and Savior, and began attending the Vietnamese Baptist Church. Her family was still in Vietnam, and they were idol-worshippers. But Diep sent them sermon notes from her Pastor along with pages torn out from a Vietnamese Bible. Through her ministry, her family in Vietnam has accepted Christ, and has begun to reach out to others!
Recently Mrs. Huynh had an opportunity to return to her home village. The church there had been struggling along with about 30 people. But as she shared about what Jesus had done for her, God began to move in her village. Hundreds of people came to Christ as a result, and now the church is constructing a new building! On this trip, the Lord began to use Mrs. Huyuh in healing the sick, even in ministering mass healing to crowds in the powerful name of Jesus.
In the meantime, the Lord is moving powerfully through Pastor Khanh Huynh and Jordan Diep at the Vietnamese Baptist Church. After Pastor Khanh invited us to train his congregation, God began to heal the sick miraculously through the ministry of the church. Every Sunday unbelievers line up in the church to receive their healing in the name of Jesus Christ. These unbelievers (mostly Buddhists) who have been healed are now witnessing to other unbelievers about the Jesus who heals. And precious souls are being saved as God is manifesting the visible proof that Jesus is the Son of God and has authority to forgive sins. That proof consists of the miraculous healings (cf. Mark 2:1-12).
The Healing Outreach, now under the leadership of Pastor Khanh and Jordan Diep, continues to bear fruit as miraculous healings take place in the busy Hong Kong City Mall. In July 2008 Pastor Khanh reported that an average of 100 people were making decisions for Jesus Christ every Saturday through the Outreach.
Any church or organization can do this as well after receiving training at or hosting a Training Event. Contact The Elijah Challenge.
- Stroke Victim Healed of Paralysis Below is the June 2002 testimony of our Vietnamese brother Jordan Diep, who now heads the Houston Outreach under the Vietnamese Baptist Church…
“Thank God for all the miracles He’s performed at the Hong Kong Market. Many people got healed and saved there. Praise the Lord! This afternoon, a Vietnamese old lady who had a paralytic stroke passed by the outreach table. I asked her, “Do you know about Jesus?” She responded, “Yes, but I’m a Buddhist.” I continued to question her, “Do you also know that Jesus is our healer?” She said, ” No, I don’t.” I asked, “Do you want me to pray for you?” She said, “Sure!” I began to lay hand and pray for her. After about 3 minutes, she was touched by the Lord. Immediately I helped her to a long bench nearby to sit down. Then, I continued to pray for her. After a while, she cried out loudly. She said, “Very hot, my whole body is on fire!” Praise God! She was completely healed after the Holy Spirit touched her.”