November 10, 2017

Reformation Emphasis Uplifts Jesus in Serbia

Laszlo Gallusz, Trans-European Division News

Thirty-one evangelistic series under the title “Five Ideas that Changed the World” shared the message of Jesus in three languages right across Serbia’s North Conference church region during the month of October.

The five “Sola principles” and their relevance for 21st-century living were preached in Serbian, Hungarian and Slovak, using both public halls and churches. The five presentations ran on consecutive nights in each location looking at Solus Christus, Sola Scriptura, Sola Gratia, Sola Fide and Soli Deo Gloria.

Each night in October, a new series started in a new city. The rationale behind the idea was that during the Reformation period God’s Word was studied, preached and heard every single day. More than forty presenters were involved, including every pastor, conference and union church leader, lay-people, and some retired ministers. This joint effort in uplifting Jesus was a fine example of working together to share the good news in a world which so desperately needs hope and the God of hope, said organizers.

The outreach did not stop with the five-night series. Bible study groups have been established in each location. A visitor from Novi Sad said, “I am thrilled by the program … [and] I would like to attend your biblical presentations in the future.”

Another new friend from Subotica said, “I feel a spiritual hunger. I need Jesus Christ and I am looking forward to further opportunities to get acquainted with the Bible.”

An Orthodox monk attended a lecture in Novi Sad. He shared that he is eager to learn about Jesus and is open to read Adventist literature to know God better. The positive response to the series surpassed the expectations of the church leadership and in several places a wide door for effective work has opened.

The “Five Ideas that Changed the World” series was also recorded as a radio program. It was broadcast on Radio Novi Sad, the regional state-owned station covering the entire conference territory. Listener response has been encouraging, including an earlier offer of a giveaway book on the idea of Reformation in the Book of Revelation which attracted sixty requests.

To climax the Reformation initiatives in the North Conference, a special academic activity was organized in the Novi Sad central church. Scholars Tatjana Samardžija, Miroslav Pujić and Laszlo Gallusz participated, together with teachers of Belgrade Theological Seminary. The rich musical program and drama made a deep impression on the participants. The event was attended by large numbers of visitors from the city and neighboring towns, pastors of Protestant churches and representatives of the Orthodox church and the Islamic community of Serbia. Several media entities followed the program and broadcast a report in their news.

Organizers said the essence of the Reformation and of these outreach initiatives is to return to the basics of the Christian faith—uplifting Christ and his Gospel as the only source of life. That aim, they said, was fulfilled. Soli Deo Gloria!