We bring you a Christ-exalting report of what the Lord is doing in the heart of America's largest city at Times Square Church, Manhattan, New York.
From the opening prayer — the Holy Spirit moved upon the audience with fire from on high. The Lord's presence in every service was mighty, with the Lord giving much evidence that He Himself had planted this church right in the center of the enemy's territory.
Even the newspapers here often refer to Times Square as Sleaze Square, and the 500 or so supporters who came to help us got a first-hand look at what we are up against. Each evening after the services, Times Square was alive with Christians witnessing, conducting street meetings and distributing literature. The theater crowd was intermingled with soldiers of the Cross lifting up the name of Jesus.
We were tremendously encouraged by the numbers of New Yorkers who sat through the meetings, weeping and praising God for answering their prayers for a church such as this in the center of the City. For the past 20 years, God has had a holy, hidden remnant of intercessors who have been weeping over the lost millions of souls. "You have come back in answer to prayer. God is establishing a powerful witness to this city in answer to our many years of intercession," they told us.
We made it clear in the opening meetings that we were not interested in emptying any church. Rather, we believe God is going to save and restore sinners and backsliders, rich and poor, of all colors and creeds.
When all the visitors went home, we faced the hard fact that we had no congregation — other than a few who told us the Spirit of God had made it known to them they were to be a part of this new work.
The first Tuesday night, we were wonderfully surprised and encouraged that more than 300 were in attendance. Each service since, more and more are gathering with us. There is no hype — no selling of ourselves, the church or the message we preach. We believe the Spirit of God is about to do something very significant in New York City, and we believe He has sent us here to be a part of it. We are one part of what God is putting together here — and we recognize that the Spirit of God cannot be regulated or contained by any one group. When God touches a city, every praying pastor becomes fruitful — every church which is righteous and praying becomes a house on fire.
They come weeping, repentant, hungry for God and for holiness — AIDS victims, alcoholics, drug addicts. We took ten addicts to our rehab center just out of our opening meetings.
Sunday night a Jewish lady came forward weeping as she told us, "Jesus is revealing His beauty and love to me, even now!" Wall Street couples stand at the altar hand-in-hand, receiving the Lord and being restored to one another. Businessmen confess their sins and commit their lives to whole-hearted service to Christ. A bag lady cried, "I don't want money; I want Jesus!" Teenagers — black, white, Asian — reach out their hands for prayer and confess sins they want to forsake.
Every Tuesday night we celebrate the Lord's Supper in Times Square Church. The presence of the Lord is so powerful and uplifting. Alcoholics walk in drunk — they sway and clap to the music — but we don't mind. We have interruptions of all kinds. They may even dance in the aisles. But we are here to reach the lost — and the Holy Spirit sobers some of them, and they come forward to receive the Lord.
I am convinced that every godly church ought to have communion each week — mostly at prayer meeting. Meeting around the table of the Lord brings such a real focus on the work of Christ — and healing and saving power flows from the realization of His presence around His memorial supper.
This week we hope to open Times Square Upper Room. This will be a place where Christians can gather to intercede and pray in one accord for the tearing down of satanic strongholds.
God has made us to know, through the Spirit, that only effectual, fervent, intercessory prayer will bring the awakening God desires to send. We can claim all we want to — but until we get desperate, get up from our easy chairs, discipline our time, and seek the face of God with much crying and supplication — no powers of hell can be challenged.
We are not interest in simply filling up the house with a curious crowd. We want God to build a holy body of true disciples who will become a testimony of the righteousness of Christ.
Also, we want to pray until the wicked powers that hold Times Square in slavery will be challenged. Satan's iron chariots must be disabled. Prayer can change even the notoriously wicked 42nd Street. State and city governments have been helpless to stem the tide of immorality — but our God is going to shake this center city. God is able to shut down every single porno bookstore and theater — drive away the drug pushers — and put an army of soul winners on the streets in their place.
We would request that all praying Christians who plan to visit New York City in the future make plans to spend some time in the Upper Room in Times Square — joining us in prayer for these very things.
Every city needs a revival — the problems are critical all across our nation. So why do we seem to press the spiritual need here in New York City? Because it is considered the financial center of the world. The population is a melting pot of peoples from nearly every culture on the face of the earth. The United Nations is here. The powers that control finances — the corporate headquarters — the many millions of people — it all adds up to a nearly forgotten mission field.
I have written much and preached much about the awful judgments I believe are going to fall upon this City. It represents the epitome of the Babylonian spirit, with its greed, arrogance, corruption and godlessness. Yet, God has put His mercy and love in our hearts for the people here. Before God sends fiery judgment, He is going to offer great mercy and raise up a pure and discerning remnant. No — the City is not going to be won to Christ; but a sizable remnant will be saved and all the City and its powers will hear the message and warning of judgment — in one way or another.
We beseech everyone who reads our mail to spend some quality time praying for this church in Times Square. God is planting a holy vine right in the middle of the devil's garbage dump — and we believe He will water it, bless it, and cause it to grow and become a strong and powerful witness to Christ's honor and power.
As hundreds gather on Tuesday nights to pray, we will be passing out to each in attendance your written prayer requests. We will pray diligently for all the needs sent to us by mail. This is life and death with us — no foolishness — no gimmicks just to get a letter from you. We will pray for you — your needs — your requests. These people really trust God! They really pray! And, they do care — very much. It is so beautiful to witness their love and concern for others.
The cost for renting the Upper Room, for renting Town Hall, and for all the outreaches to the needy, is very high. All costs in New York City are terribly high. But God has been good, and the Lord has been putting it on the hearts of many friends to help us underwrite this important ministry.
All I ask is that you pray about what God would have you do. Does this report bless your heart? Do you rejoice in what God is doing? If so, you could be such a blessing to us — and lift the load from our shoulders. Thank you for caring.
We Love you!