BEIRUT: Unprecedented Opportunity To Reach Lebanon LIVE on Prime-Time!

Together with 57 church pastors of Beirut the GCMM team watched as a new page in missions history was written in the Middle East. Together with 57 church pastors of Beirut the GCMM team watched as a new page in missions history was written in the Middle East.


Story Highlights:

 

In the month of November Lebanon became the scene of an evangelistic campaign without parallel in the history of the nation

beirut BB

The closing celebrations took place at the 1,500-seat Emil Lahoud Conference Center in central Beirut

Beirut cameraman service

Each night before the events began the venue filled to overflow. Thousands had to be turned away for security reasons. Inside were Lebanese nationals as well as Syrian and Iraqi refugees

Beirut call center

The phones at the call center continue to ring. Lebanon is responding to the Gospel

beirut P2C book

The Power To Change book was an effective tool in reaching the people of Lebanon 

Lebanese Network TV Broadcasts The Gospel to Millions, LIVE on Prime Time!

Great Commission Media Ministries, in partnership with East-West Ministries conducted an evangelistic campaign this past November, that was without parallel in the history of Lebanon.

As ISIS forces continued its campaign of terror in the Middle East, in Lebanon, mainstream electronic media, outdoor advertising, and social media touched the soul of the nation and nations beyond.

The sweeping thirty-day mega city media campaign took a monumental and miraculous turn when Lebanon State Television did something unheard of in an Islamic nation. They unexpectedly got involved.

Just hours before the media campaign's closing evening events kicked off, Lebanese television executives contacted GCMM Islamic ministries director Hani, asking for permission to telecast the events LIVE on prime time television nationwide. Lebanon State TV is watched in every home in the nation.

Together with 57 church pastors of Beirut the GCMM team watched as a new page in missions history was written in the Middle East.

The significance of these telecasts for the Lebanese Church is colossal. This is clear demonstration of how God "calls the shots" in missions. This could not have been planned by the committee or the campaign organizer GCMM.

Out of over 90 major city campaigns conducted in the last 12 years we have never before seen anything like this.

No government has ever offered airtime on its national network, much less LIVE TV on prime time!

(See more photos from the campaign and closing ceremony in our latest newsletter PDF) To receive this monthly enewsletter in your email click here.

Massive Sowing of The Seed

To add to the irony, this did not happen in just any western Christianized nation, but in the heart of the Islamic world!

The move by Lebanon State TV amounts to a massive sowing of the Good News into every television household in Lebanon. The effects of this never before event are impossible to predict. However, it can be said that more people have been impacted by the Gospel than at any time previously.

The closing events of the campaign were also carried by three satellite channels, one of which was SAT7, a popular Christian channel watched throughout North Africa and the Middle East to Afghanistan.

The closing ceremony on the last night: The Lebanese Church expressed its overflowing gratitude to Great Commission Media Ministries for bringing the vision of comprehensive strategy to reach a nation.  We aimed for a mega city (Beirut) the Lord honored our faith and we touched the nation (Lebanon). Photos: Speakers, artists, MC's, and volunteers gathered on stage with uplifted hands raised their voices in worship and praise to the Lord for his goodness, grace, blessings, and protection during the campaign.

Lebanese Army Provides Security

The closing celebrations took place at the 1,500-seat Emil Lahoud Conference Center in central Beirut.

The Lebanese Army had dispatched heavily armed soldiers to provide for security. Two weeks earlier in one terrorist attack in Beirut, three bombs had killed 40 people and injured over 200 others.

Just 40 kilometers to the east (25 miles) ISIS fighters clashed with Syrian government forces. Overhead, in the skies of Beirut, Russian fighter jets streaked toward targets in Syria.

The evening celebrations consisted of the best Gospel music in the Middle East and anointed Christ-centered preaching from the Word of God.

Thousands Were Turned Away

Each night before the events began the venue filled to overflow. Thousands had to be turned away for security reasons. Inside were Lebanese nationals as well as Syrian and Iraqi refugees.

Those lucky enough to get inside switched their cell phone to video mode and streamed the event to friends who could not get in. Lebanon TV afforded millions of others the opportunity to watch the event by blanketing the country via its TV network.

The Response!

Jordanian born Gospel singer Ziad Shehedeh sang: "Let the nations know that God is good! He is Almighty, I rejoice in the day when you, my Holy God called me by name. You fill me with your Spirit and give me life!"

Egyptian artist Monir Habib proclaimed: "The Lord is near all who cry out to Him!"

GCMM TV pastor Raif challenged his listeners: " God has the power to heal the wounds of your soul. It starts with reconciliation, forgiveness. He is able to restore broken homes, families, and shattered dreams. We need to be forgiven and we need to forgive others.

"God forgave us through His son on the cross."

They Came in Big Numbers

An altar call was given at the end of the message. People from all across the auditorium as well as the balconies started to make their way forward to the front of the platform. There was not enough room for all. There were people standing in the stairways and the aisles. Many wept as they came. Among those who responded were Muslims in their typical apparel.

There seemed to be no end to the steady flow of those responding to the Gospel. Local Church leaders said that this is unusual as the Lebanese are a relatively proud people and are not typicall seen publicly responding like this.

The pastoral committee members said that Lebanon had not seen anything comparable to the campaign in centuries.

While 1,500 people were watching inside the packed venue, outdoor media on the busiest streets, the billboards and jumbo video screens proclaimed the same message that you can experience the "Power to Change."                                              

Thanks to Lebanese Television in millions of homes, Lebanese heard and saw that Jesus is the One who brings real, real change into our lives.

Suddenly, the Church was on center stage across the nation like never before.

The city was buzzing with talk about the "Power to Change" campaign

Everyone, pastor and parishioner alike, rejoiced at the unprecedented exposure the Church and the Gospel had received.

The Primary tool, the "Power To Change” Book was in demand

By the end of November the campaign call center in Beirut had logged 30,000 orders for the campaign book containing 15 high-impact stories of transformed lives stories as well as the road map to new life in Jesus.

Additionally, a DVD with the same transformation stories and the life of Jesus in video format was made available to all who wanted one.

Those choosing to contact a Christian ministry or entity face potential consequences. Family, friends or relatives may turn out to be ones worst enemies.

Aside from Beirut, orders for books came from cities across Lebanon, the Beqaa valley refugee camps, Syria and Jordan.

One of the calls was from a Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.  Several books were requested.

An immensely popular performing vocalist contracted by Coca Cola when the soft drink was introduced to the Middle East also called to get her copy of "Experience the Power to Change."

Books have also been ordered for Maronite schools and prisons.

The campaign has been a hit in the social media. Over 100 million impressions were logged prior to and during the campaign.

The campaign Facebook pages and the website logged over 30 million hits from all over the Middle East

Hezbollah Calling

The campaign aroused interest among other not-so friendly entities.

Hezbollah (Party of God, in Arabic), the de facto ruling political and military power in Lebanon sent an envoy to check out the final closing event.

The meeting was uneventful and peaceful. The Hezbollah representative wanted to know who had organized the media campaign and what the goals of the campaign were.

The envoy left the premises evidently satisfied with the answers.

(See more photos from the campaign and closing ceremony in our latest newsletter PDF) To receive this monthly enewsletter in your email click here.

Beqaa Valley Refugee Camp

During the campaign we made several visits to the massive refugee camps of Beqaa Valley, located between Damascus and Beirut. They house over 2 million Muslim refugees from both Syria and Iraq.

GCMM has delivered both food and warm winter clothing to 60 families in the camps.

While there we were invited into one of the plastic shelters. After serving us tea, the man of the house soon got involved in a discussion about God.

One of our local team members shared on the Bible and God, pointing out the differences  with the Koran and Allah. He emphasized the Son of God who died on a cross for the sins of man.

First Visit in 1982

Next, Sergey spoke up.

Before accepting Jesus as Lord, Sergey had served as a commander in the special forces of the Soviet Army in Afghanistan. Sergei had also been a team leader in the 40 mega city media campaigns we had conducted in Russia.

"This is my second time in this valley."

Sergey explained how he had been sent to the Beqaa Valley in 1982 to evacuate wounded Russian soldiers and officers who were fighting alongside the Syrian army.

At the time, Syria had occupied Lebanon and was at war with Israel. Syrian losses were devastating. They had lost 81 fighter jets and 600 tanks just in two days.

In Sergey's unit there were 4 helicopters. Three were helicopter gunships and one was a transport chopper.

We landed in Hell

"We thought we had landed in hell," said Sergey. There was fire, smoke, explosions everywhere. Three attack helicopters fired away to the ground below nonstop as we hauled the wounded into the transport helicopter."

No one moved in the tent as Sergey spoke. He had everyones attention.

"I am no longer a soldier. I am a man who will never kill or harm another man again! I love people. I am a pastor and my purpose in life is to save men and women from power of the devil and lead then into the kingdom of God."

I urged Sergey to share how he had found God.

Sergey continued. "One day, in another battle, it was hand-to-hand combat, I lost my closest buddy who was a commander as well. I buried him on the battlefield that same day.

Eternal life, says who!

"That evening as I was sitting in camp another soldier walked up to me and started to talk to me about eternal life, like there was such a thing as eternal life.

I was furious. Religious talk was not what I wanted to hear. I pulled out my pistol, fastened my silencer to the barrel and pressed the gun against his head."

Now, everyones eyes were riveted to Sergey.

"I said: Soon we will see if there is such a thing as eternal life. I am going to kill you, I burn your body and no one will ever know what happened!"

I could see that Sergey's words resonated with everyone in the tent. They had seen a gun pointing at the head of loved ones countless times. ISIS had massacred them before their eyes.

"But my comrade with my gun to his head looked at me straight in the eyes and said without hesitation or any sign of fear or emotion: "Go ahead Sergey, shoot me. You can kill my body, but you cannot kill my soul. It will live forever. I will live eternally in heaven.

I was shaken to the bone.

Having served in the special forces for years I was used to seeing people drop to their knees before me and cry out for mercy begging me not to kill them, and I would mercilessly pull the trigger."

Unshakable Peace

"But now, this guy, with my gun to his head, showed absolutely no sign of fear.

Never in my whole career as a professional soldier had I seen anyone in the face of certain death fearless, radiating a perfect peace. I could not fathom it, Sergey spoke with conviction and compassion.

That was the start of my journey toward God. It led me to the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who has forgiven me of my horrible sins. I experienced the power of change. God in his great mercy forgave me and gave me new life."

Sergey said that he now preached the good news of the Gospel, and he currently pastors a church of 400 members in Russia.

There was a deep silence in the refugee tent.

One of the team spoke up. "Would you like to experience the same grace of God, his love, his forgiveness of your sins?"

Tent Turns Into Temple

The presence of the Holy Spirit was evident in that refugee tent. It seemed as if the tent had transformed into a temple.

 Our Muslim friends stood up, all of them. As a sign that they were in agreement they moved toward us with heads bowed. We prayed first and then each of the seven adults repeated the prayer asking Jesus to come into his or her life. They were committing their lives to Jesus Christ in front of my eyes. The Word of God had performed its task.

Our friends would not have let us leave but we needed to get back to Beirut before nightfall. 

We said good-bye and left them with our local undercover missionaries at the camp.

The mega city campaign in Beirut has become a historic outreach at Great Commission Media Ministries.

Thank you for standing with us and making this possible through your prayers and financial support. Together, with our ministry partner East-West Ministries and you as part of our missionary team, we have been partakers in a great work of God. We are witnesses to the Lord doing the impossible in an area of our world that is riddled with impossibilities.

The phones at the call center continue to ring. Lebanon is responding to the Gospel.

May the Lord bless you abundantly this Christmas Season. As we celebrate, let us rejoice that many thousands more have found Jesus as their greatest Christmas gift and that millions of others have heard the “tidings of great joy that will be for all the people“, as proclaimed by the angel of the Lord on that first Christmas night.

Dr. Hannu Haukka, president

(See more photos from the campaign and closing ceremony in our latest newsletter PDF) To receive this monthly enewsletter in your email click here.

GCM Ministries also distributes humanitarian aid as a part of our outreach to the Arab world.