CALL TO OBEDIENCE #361
Reimar A.C. Schultze
"My Damascus Road Experience (Part 2)"
by Pastor Reimar A. C. Schultze
And it came to pass, that, as I made my journey, and was come nigh unto Damascus about noon, suddenly there shone from heaven a great light round about me.Acts 22:6
In the last CTO, I began to give you my testimony, my
Three years passed since that forest experience, but nothing more spiritually happened until I was 16. I was in my last year of high school. By this time I had never yet opened the Bible, had never ever had anyone talk to me about Jesus, and had never said a prayer. I had never heard of a Christian as yet. But now my professor, a former Nazi and atheist, presented Charles Darwin's theory of evolution. As I listened, two voices made themselves known to me: 1. The voice of reason - As I listened to the story of evolution it did not make any sense to me; 2. The voice of conscience.
John the Baptist said of Jesus, this is the true light which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. No one is born without this inner light. No man is born an atheist. A man becomes an atheist by suppressing what he knows within himself. Although I had no religious background of any kind, I was aware of the inner light. When it came to moral issues it was always yes or no for me. Once while we were taking tests on German history, the answers to the questions were smuggled under our desk tops from person to person. I was the last one to receive the answers since I sat next to Siegfried in the back corner. When Siegfried handed me the answers, the inner voice within me said, "No." Oh, it was a strong, "NO!" I shoved the paper back into Siegfried's hand.
We must know that every time we override this voice, our conscience becomes harder. Our inner moral compass loses in sensitivity until we become unable to discern its message altogether anymore (1 Tim. 4:2). When Martin Luther said at that famous assembly of the nobility and the religious authorities of the
At the end of this presentation on evolution, my professor asked: "Is there anyone here who would like to dispute the Darwinian theory?" This was an all boys’ high school. I was the shyest boy in the class. I had not said a word in four years, but upon the professor's question, without my planning it, I went up like a rocket. The words, "I must speak against this tomorrow," burst out of me. Christianity is supernatural. You take the supernatural out of Christianity and you have no Christianity left. The professor said, "You have the whole science hour tomorrow." I was petrified, but the class was electrified.
After school, I made my way up the cobble stone road to the top of the hill where we lived. I said to my mother, "Do you have a Bible?" She produced a little old Luther Bible in the old German script with a rubber band holding it together. I instinctively turned to the last book of the Bible, the Revelation, since I was studying to be a scientist. I was sure the latest information would be in the most recent publication of this book. In a matter of minutes, I realized I had gotten myself into something that was bigger than I was. I decided that God or whatever had gotten me into this would have to get me through it. I gave up getting help from the Bible, and so I just planned to stand before the class, be embarrassed, and get on with my life the next day.
There I stood before the class that memorable morning, completely empty in my head. The students looked at me and I looked at them. You could have heard a pin drop as it seemed minutes rolled by. Suddenly these words came out of me with force: "It cannot be, it cannot be, there must be a God." No further message came to me. Embarrassed, I headed for my seat in the back corner and immediately I entered into an entirely different world in which I had never been before. As I was sliding onto my bench the glory of God enveloped me entirely. Yes, I did not have the word "glory" in my vocabulary, but that is what it was, indescribable, wonderful, out of this world. I have no recollection of what happened in the classroom, I only know what happened to me.
Nearing my graduation three questions occupied my mind every day. I was going to get a job, get married, etc. yet I had no answers to where I came from, why I was here, and where I was going when I would die. I felt that I was totally unprepared for life. Then suddenly while I was in the glory that same voice that spoke to me in the forest 3 years earlier, spoke to me again. "I will give you the answers to the questions of origin, purpose and destiny." I was thrilled. From that day on I hurried home after school each day to read mother's Bible and pray to the yet much unknown God. In six months of reading and praying I understood nothing, except for two scriptures. The one said, Ask and ye shall receive, seek and ye shall find, knock and it shall be opened unto you. (Matt.7:7). The other was, Behold I stand at the door and knock, if any man hear my voice and open the door I will come into him and will sup with him and he with me (Rev. 3:20). I said to myself, "If there ever was a German who did ask, seek and knock, it was me. If God is real He has to reveal Himself to me." The other verse told me that Jesus wanted to come into my life, but I had no idea as to how to go about it.
Six months after I experienced the glory of the Lord, I visited my Jewish Grandfather who escaped Nazi Germany during the holocaust by fleeing to
I left at 4:30 AM the next morning to take the train back to
Of course, witnessing was the hardest for me because I was naturally withdrawn, but I knew I had to deny my Self or I would never follow Jesus. First I witnessed to my mother. She gave me a cold shoulder. Then I witnessed to my "Christian" scout master. His bald head and face turned red and he yelled at me saying, "Blasphemy, blasphemy!" To him for someone to say that Christ was in his heart was the same as the sin of blasphemy. According to him a holy God would never dwell in a sinful man. But I was not offended; he just did not know the secret that Jesus had cleansed my heart of all sin.
A few weeks later I was excommunicated from the Christian Boy Scouts of Germany because I said I had Jesus in my heart. I, a 16 year old, and a 19 year old friend started an underground Boy Scout movement called Dietrich Bonhoeffer, after a Lutheran pastor who worked in the resistance movement to stop Hitler. Bonhoeffer was murdered before the end of the war, but he left the church with a classic document, "The Cost of Discipleship."
If you would like to know the story of my coming to America and learning to walk with God, you can get my autobiography "I AM Love," through my website, or through Amazon.com.