Article source: JOY! Magazine
As Christians, we are called to be salt and light in society. We are called to be history-makers and world changers. We are called to be fruitful in our lives, to achieve much for the Kingdom of God. Our mandate on this earth is to go out into all nations and share the Gospel. We live with eternity in mind, all desiring to hear the wonderful words of our King, “Well done, good and faithful servant…” One such man who is living out this calling is Pastor Raymond Lombard. From missionary work in nations around Africa, to training house church leaders in China, Raymond’s footsteps are directed fully by Jesus, and his life’s work is a testament to this humble submission.
A life devoted to Christ
Raymond Daniel Lombard was born on the 18th of May 1960 in Harare, Zimbabwe. His family moved back to South Africa in 1965, and lived in Benoni for most of his young life. Today, Raymond lives in Durbanville, Cape Town, and is married to his beautiful wife, Amanda. The couple have five children, and are blessed with six grandchildren. He is the Senior Pastor at the Full Gospel Church, Lewende Woord, Parow, a ministry that he has been actively involved in for almost 40 years. Raymond is led by our Lord Jesus, and has devoted his life to being a diligent worker. He seeks to rightly divide the Word of Truth, as Paul advises in 2 Timothy 2:15.
Testimony of finding Christ
As a teenager, Raymond began to question the meaning of life, and wondered what his purpose was. “As a young man of seventeen, I struggled with the existential meaning of life. What was I living for? Why was I born? I was searching for answers; I had feelings of utter emptiness deep within my soul. Sometimes I would kneel by my bed and pray, but nothing happened and no-one ever answered me. The emptiness inside of me remained with me … This is how my search for God began, although the questions remained – where would I find God? Or does God find us?”.
Enlisted in the Navy
When Raymond was 18 years old, he received a letter in the post – his call-up letter for national service. He reported to Saldanha Bay, where he started his two years of national service in the Navy. Raymond recalls sitting with three of his friends who were serving with him, in August 1979. They were talking about religion, and whether they thought they would go to heaven. One of Raymond’s friends told him that the Bible states that you have to be born again to enter the Kingdom of God. This made Raymond question his salvation. For four days he had a spiritual battle about being born again. On the fourth night, not being able to sleep, he woke up his friend to discuss this burning question.
A Damascus experience
While sitting outside under a tree, Raymond asked his friend how to become born again. To his utter amazement, his friend could not answer him. At that moment, Raymond realised that God was the only One who could give him the peace that he so ardently wanted. He then prayed for God’s forgiveness, and became born-again. Raymond turned to his friend, and asked him if he also wanted to give his heart to the Lord. “My Damascus experience was an impressionable event in my life. Looking up into the moonlit night, I felt as if a light from heaven was shining directly into my heart. I knew while I was sitting there that Jesus Christ was with me and in my heart. I realised, at that very moment, that I was born-again.”
Dedicating his life to Christ
This life-changing moment was the catalyst for a future of service, a life devoted to the works of Jesus. Raymond went on to study Theology at Irene Theological College, of the Full Gospel Church of God. He entered the ministry full-time in March 1982, and was ordained on the 5th of January 1985. On the 18th of May 1998, Raymond was further ordained by the Church of God Cleveland, Tennessee in the United States of America.
Pastor Ray started Raymond Lombard Ministries to educate, teach, and enrich pastors, evangelists, church leaders, and all Christians in the Word of God. He has been involved in impressionable missionary work in nations around the world, which you can read more about over the next few pages.
Raymond’s footsteps are directed fully by Jesus.
Covid-19 led to new opportunities
Alongside his main ministry, Raymond also hosts a weekly Bible school at his Church in Parow. Before lockdown, this Bible School welcomed close to 500 students every week! Since lockdown, the Bible School has been successfully broadcast on the internet. Various topics have been covered in the Bible School. Raymond has a proactive staff and leadership team in his assembly, which makes it possible for him to be active in missionary work in Southern, East, Central, North and West Africa, Asia, India, South-East Asia, Central and Latin America.
Pastor Ray shares about the impact of Covid on the Lewende Woord Bible School:
“During the same week that President Ramaphosa announced our national lockdown, I wrestled with the Lord with the question of – well, what to do now? Our Bible School has around 500 students that attend at our church on a Tuesday evening. According to the lockdown rules, I had to close the doors to the school.
“While speaking to the Lord about this, I heard the words, ‘Carpe Diem!’ I answered Him, ‘I understand what You are saying, seize the day!’ Then the Lord said ‘Crisis’ in Chinese. I immediately understood what He was saying. A few months earlier, while doing missionary work in Beijing, my Chinese friend and brother in Christ explained the word to me by writing it on a piece of paper. He showed me that the word consists of two components – danger and opportunity. Immediately I had a revelation in my spirit. The Lord was saying, ‘Yes, this is a dangerous time, but it is also a time of opportunity. Seize the day!’
“We immediately started to upload the video recordings of our Bible School and Sunday services onto the internet. We have our own YouTube channel – Raymond Lombard Ministries. With over 400 000+ views at the end of August, our videos have touched many lives. Our viewership continues to grow daily!
Praise the Lord!”
Wheels for God’s Word
On the 5th of September 1995, at 5am in the morning during his prayer time, Raymond experienced a touch of God on his life concerning a special calling into the Mission Field (1 Cor 16:9). This resulted in the formation of Wheels for God’s Word (WGW).
Today, this is a mission organisation that is doing work in 38 countries on the African continent, namely: South Africa, Lesotho, Swaziland, Mozambique, Madagascar, Botswana, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Namibia, Angola, Democratic Republic Congo, Burundi, Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, Central Africa Republic, Sudan, South Sudan, Sierra Leone, Chad, Cameroon, Nigeria, Benin, Niger, Togo, Ghana, Burkina Faso, Cote D’Ivoire, Senegal, Mali, Egypt, Gambia, Liberia, Niger, and Rwanda.
Since the formation of this organisation, Raymond has trained over 22 000 preachers and Church leaders in Africa. Through this ministry, more than 4 000 bicycles and many motorcycles have also been given to pastors and evangelists, which has helped spread the Gospel 10-12 times faster.
These pastors and evangelists have been trained using the Heart of Man charts. Over 20 600 Heart of Man large charts, 65 000 Heart of Man booklets, 5 000 pocket size Heart of Man charts, and thousands of Bibles have been distributed in these countries.
As the Director of Wheels for God’s Word, Raymond has been serving the Church in Africa in Missions for 25 years.
Learn more about Wheels for God’s Word online: www.wheelsforgod.org.za
The Heart-of-Man Charts
One of the aspects of the ministry that Raymond holds closest to his heart is the Heart-of-Man Charts. Wheels for God’s Word has developed a mobile app for sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ using a smart-phone. The Heart-of-Man app is based on the printed version, and is an effective tool in assisting evangelists and pastors.
The Heart-of-Man chart is available in more than 300 languages. The primary aim of the app is to reach the Unreached People Groups (UPGs) and least reached people groups in the 10-40 window, specifically in countries where printed Gospel media is outlawed. They are also active in countries outside of the 10-40 window, where the Gospel is not welcome, and where faith related persecution still occurs.
A video presentation has been made of the Heart-of-Man chart, with subtitles available in 18 different languages. It is available on www.raymondlombard.com/heartofman
Serving the Church in Africa
This Missions Ministry started in the Democratic Republic of Congo in North Kivu (Eastern Congo), in the Ituri rainforest. 1 420 Pygmy village churches were planted over many years. The result was that thousands of new village churches came into existence, and tens of thousands of souls were added to the kingdom of God.
Focus on the Word Radio Show
Since 2002, Raymond has been fortunate enough to have a radio show dedicated to the ministry and missionary work that he is involved in. “Focus on the Word” is broadcast on Radio Tygerberg, the largest Christian radio station in South Africa. This is one of the most popular weekly radio Bible programmes that serves the wider community in the Western Cape, as well as internationally on the internet via live streaming. All programmes are available on podcast. Tune in to 104FM on Wednesday evenings at 19:30 to listen to Raymond.
Growing the house church in China
It is no secret that China is opposed to the Gospel. This nation is increasingly less tolerant towards Christians, and evangelism is completely illegal. Many churches have been forced to meet in secret. Since 2010, Pastor Raymond has been ministering and training hundreds of pastors in the house church in China. Six of Raymond’s books have been translated into Mandarin (Chinese), published and distributed in China.
Firewall Project Africa
Since 2014, another vision called the Firewall Project Africa, aims at raising a Firewall of God’s Spirit and grace in Africa, focusing initially upon the countries stretching from Senegal to Ethiopia, and down south to Mozambique.
God, in His mercy, has used Raymond to evangelise in different countries on the continent of Africa. Because of this, the Africa Council appointed him as the Co-ordinator of this Firewall project. In October 2019, Raymond was appointed by the Africa Council Church of God World Missions as the Director of Evangelism and Church Planting.
Since 2016, the Firewall Project has developed into a global initiative called the Global Fire Advance. Raymond is one of the founding Board members of the Global Fire Advance. Their objective is to strategically plan and accomplish evangelism, discipleship, and Church planting around the world with involvement in South America and Central America. To date, strategic training has been done in Panama (Central America), as well as Chile, Ecuador, Peru, and Argentina (South America).
Pastor Ray has trained thousands of pastors in four main cities in India (Ranchi, Hydrabadad, Mumbai, and New Delhi), as well as in South East Asian countries like Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, and Philippines.
Re-Forma: Developing Global Ministry Outcomes
Studies show that 93% of all pastors do not have a formal theological education. According to statistics, that equates to well over 2 million Protestant pastors worldwide. In addition, every year thousands of new Protestant churches are established, very often without a trained pastor or preacher. The biggest crisis facing the evangelical, global church today is the fact that most pastors, missionaries, and Christian leaders are under-educated or not educated at all. Re-Forma has set as its goal to fundamentally remedy this situation.
In August 2017, Raymond was appointed to serve in the leadership team of Re-Forma, and serves on the Advisory Council. This international organisation has, at its heart, Biblical training to specially focus on the 93% of ministers of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, who have never been formally trained.
Raymond Lombard Ministries
On the 30th of November 2018, the Raymond Lombard Ministries website was launched. It contains various books and articles written by Raymond, as well as audio recordings, in MP3 format. Digital copies of printed media can be downloaded in pdf format. The website serves the whole Church of the Lord Jesus Christ. The purpose of this website is to educate, teach, and enrich pastors, evangelists, church leaders, and all Christians in the Word of God.
“Our desire is that, through this website, the calling and the ministry of all Christians will grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord. Our ultimate goal is that Biblical training for ministry will take place on a global scale to help address the real need of Christians being Biblically trained in sound doctrine.”
Visit www.raymondlombard.com to access books, articles, audio, & video recordings.
An inspired author
Raymond has written ten books throughout his ministry. They include the following:
• The Book of Revelation (verse-by-verse commentary)
• The Book of Daniel (verse-by-verse commentary)
• The Spirit World
• Kingdom Theology (Mysteries of the New Testament)
• The Names of God
• Jesus Christ in the Old Testament (Priesthood, Tabernacle, Offerings, Feasts of the Lord and the Angel of the Lord)
• Synopsis of the New Testament
• What Does the Bible Teach? Volume 1
• What Does the Bible Teach? Volume 2
• The Testimony
All ten books were written in Afrikaans, nine of which have been translated into English, five into Mandarin Chinese, six into French, four into Spanish, one each into Mongolian, Arabic, Sotho and Xhosa. To date, more than 18 500 books have been printed. Raymond is a phenomenal teacher in the prophetic scriptures, especially in the books of Revelation and Daniel. All these powerful books, as well as translations, are available on Raymond’s website.
For more information, contact the church office at 021 939 1898 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Date published: 07/09/2020
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