"Eternity will really come."
Bohdan DEMBORYNSKYI, a resident of Ternopil who disseminates around town religious messages such as “Eternity is Coming Soon,” agreed to comment on the reasons for his religious campaign to RISU correspondent Volodymyr Moroz.
Almost everyone in Ternopil and most other cities in Ukraine have seen such writings on signboards such as “Eternity Comes Soon,” “Prepare a Way for the Lord,” “Go and Do Not Sin,” or “Jesus Loves You.” They are hung up on fences, by constructions sites, on concrete slabs, or walls. These sayings make people think, invoking different reactions, from approval to hostility. Bohdan Demborynskyi, who makes and puts up such signs in Ternopil, belongs to a church which he calls simply “Good News.” He says the church is evangelical as it is based on the Gospel. Our interview with him follows:
- Please tell us about yourself.
- Up to the age of 30 I was an atheist and tried to convince myself that there is no God. It was convenient for me like that. If there is no God, then there are no sins and one doesn’t have to account for them. But with time I started noticing things that are impossible to explain from a material point of view. I started reading the Bible and understood that I was a sinner and am going to hell, even though I didn’t believe in its existence.
More than anything else in the Bible, I was impressed by Christ. I didn’t believe that he ever lived on earth, but in my readings I saw his holiness and my sinfulness. All my efforts to change my life, to become a better person and not sin were fruitless. I understood that I can’t change myself by myself. For the first time in my life, I started to turn to God, who I didn’t know.
At the same time, I heard about a church called Rebirth and it’s Bible School. I went there with my wife. The pastor there and other believers taught us to believe in the Bible and to recognize the truth.
In April, 1996, I accepted Jesus Christ as my God and Savior. I accepted that He forgave me and gave me eternal life. Glory to God! What can be better? This is true happiness!
Seven years ago God called us to carry out the service of healing the sick. We went to an orphanage 100 kilometers outside of Ternopil. There we found close to 100 children and teachers. I explained to those there about God’s plan of salvation and that Christ heals the sick. I called the willing to pray to accept Christ and later asked who among them would like to be healed by the Lord. A girl came forward who had a small pain behind her ear. My wife laid hands on her and the pain immediately disappeared. After her another girl came up to us who was blind in one eye. I laid hands on her and asked in the name of Jesus that her eye be healed. You know what happened? Nothing. I spoke with the girl and found out that she gets a modest compensation for her invalid status. In other words, she had a financial reason holding her back from healing. After that when I laid hands on her a third time, she started to see and was able to read 4 millimeter letters. So if I had given up after the first attempt, I would not have seen this miracle. As we were exiting the hall, some children literally dragged by the hand one girl who was deaf in one ear. By that time, my faith had significantly grown and fear had vanished. The deaf ear was cured at once.
We continued from time to time to visit this and other orphanages to heal sick children. Each time we witnessed more and more healing. Later we started visiting the women’s colony in Dobrevody village. We carried out healings there over the space of five years and we saw hundreds of miracles. With His love, God changes criminals into saintly people.
We performed many healings in various cities and villages throughout Ukraine, Moldova and Belarus. Hundreds and hundreds of times we saw how God took away pain from people’s spines and arthritic joints, and how scoliosis disappeared. So many times we were witnesses to God’s healing of the deaf and the blind. Swellings disappeared, as did tuberculosis, kidney stones, and stunted arms and legs grew longer. Alcoholics and drug addicts became normal again. Broken families were healed. This is all evangelism – “good news” which the Son of God brought!
After a while God gave us the desire to establish a church in Ternopil. In November, 2005 the Good News church was born. I am the pastor of the church.
We publish a newspaper that is also called “Good News,” and are planning to make a program for CNL, a satellite TV channel. We are doing all this with one aim - to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ. Only the gospel has the power to save sinners. Only through it is God’s power revealed. We want every resident of Ternopil to know that God is alive! Jesus Christ has not changed and continues to save everybody who turns to Him! God is good! He forgives all sins and heals the sick! Believe in this!
- What is the meaning of the slogans “Eternity will come soon,” “Jesus loves you,” and others?
- The meaning of these words is straightforward. Eternity will truly come. Eternity – this is the state in which there is no time and it is impossible to change things. Relations with God must be put straight now. Later will be too late. Christ said to his disciples, “This good news of the kingdom will be preached to all nations all over the world and then the end will come.” Today, the good news of Jesus Christ is spread all over the world through every way possible and reaches the furthest corners of our planet. This is one of the most important signs of the nearness of the coming of Jesus Christ. And during his coming will be the first resurrection of the dead. All those who believed in the Gospel will be resurrected. All who believe in Jesus will receive a new body similar to that of the risen Christ and will live forever in the kingdom of God.
Once I was talking to an atheist on this subject. He was behaving very aggressively. He really did not like hearing about the creator. I can understand him. I also used to consider myself an atheist. I did not want to admit to God’s existence because then I would have had to admit to His laws. Atheism is a teaching of the devil.
This atheist was trying to convince me that God is a fantasy, that the Bible is a pack of tales, and that there were many Jesuses. I calmly listened to him and then said. “I am talking about Jesus from Nazareth who died on the cross and was resurrected on the third day. He is alive today and does great miracles that I have seen with my own eyes a thousand times!” He could not bear this and we stopped our conversation. The devil likes to talk about traditions and customs, but he does not want to hear about miracles because they prove that Christ resurrected.
Today we are living in the last times. Christ is coming soon. I am not going to name the date. Nobody except God knows this. But the events that will occur before the coming of Christ are described in the Bible.
Apostle Paul in the first letter to Corinthians writes, “I am telling you a secret: not all of us will die but all of us will change at once, you will not even be able to blink at last trumpet call: because it will sound and the dead will resurrect, and we will change!” Apostle John reminds us of the seven trumpets (Revelation 8–11). So the last trumpet is the seventh one. When the seventh trumpet sounds, the first resurrection of the dead will happen: “And the seventh angel blew his trumpet There were loud voices in heaven saying, ‘The kingdom of the world now belongs to our Lord and to his Annointed, and he will reign forever and ever.’”(Revelation 11:15).
The church in Jerusalem will be rebuilt before the second coming of Jesus Christ (Revelation 1) and the Antichrist will sit on its throne ( Sol. 2:2- 4). All necessary materials for the construction are prepared already. It is possible to build the church in six to eight months with today’s high technology. All equipment, clothes for priests, and material for the liturgy is ready. Now there is a mosque Al-Aksa instead of the church and Muslims do not allow Jews to rebuild the church. But events in the Near East are progressing unexpectedly.
Also, there are technical opportunities for the Antichrist to come to power which were not there before. Today it is already possible to insert a “sign” of an animal, a microchip that contains limited information about its owner, including his financial business, into a hand or forehead. (Revelation 13). This makes it possible to have central command control of everybody everywhere just as occurs in the fight against terrorism and criminality.
It does not matter when all this will happen, in 10 years or 100. What matters is that this certainly will happen. God will not suffer lawlessness forever. His patience does have an end.
- How do your slogans and signs influence people? Can you give us some examples?
- I don’t conduct surveys about this, but I know that when people read these words, they start to think about the question of eternity. Even atheists know in the depths of their souls that God exists. But they do not know God and His relationship with them. If only they knew how much God loves them. Many people think that our God is an angry God and wants to punish them every time they are sinning. In reality God is kind! Look at His Son’s attitude towards people and you will see the Heaven Father’s attitude. Jesus came to earth to reveal the Father. Every word and every act of Jesus is a reflection of God’s will.
Life’s problems also get me down. Sometimes when I am in this mood I take a look at the words “Eternity will come soon” on my car, and it gives me energy to get rid of my vanity. I remember that I am temporarily on this earth and Jesus will soon come to get me and take me to Eden, a place where there is no death, suffering, injustice, or hatred. This is a place where only love exists.
- Have you had any particular reactions from the clergy or faithful from other churches?
- Of course, sometimes I hear comments of passersby, both positive and negative. I don’t ask what church or confession they belong to. There is only one church in Ternopil. It is not evangelical, Catholic, or Orthodox, but the church of Jesus Christ. Jesus said once: “There will be one flock and one pastor.” God is our Father, and all of us are His children. This does not, however, give us automatic right to eternal life in paradise. The right to eternal life is given from above from the Holy Spirit and through accepting Jesus Christ as God and Savior. Those born from above receive remission of sins, peace in God, the right to God’s Kingdom, and eternal life. These people are the church of Jesus Christ, His body, and this does not depend on their congregation. If we are parts of Jesus Christ’s body then why would we argue and be enemies? We are going to live all together in heaven. God will not divide paradise into areas with high fences for different congregations. God loves us all equally and does not differentiate between faithful of different congregations. So let’s take an example from our Heavenly Father.
- What motivated you to get involved with spreading these sayings around Ternopil?
- Life passes quickly. One day it will end. Every one of us will answer before God as to his or her life. Every person, whether they wish to or not, will make his or her choice for or against eternal life with God.
It is written: “A person dies once and then they are judged.” There will be no way-station where something can be changed.
In heaven, like in hell, there will be only “volunteers.”. Nobody will take us anywhere by force. I do not believe in fate. Everybody of us chooses his or her destiny. Jesus offers us the best fate: the forgiveness of all sins and eternal life with Him. If you do not love Him, you can not live with Him eternally. In the Bible, the church in called the bride of Jesus Christ. The bride and groom will be united only by love. Jesus already proved to us His love by dying for us. There will be no more signs! Now it is the turn of every one of us.
I firmly believe that I will meet many people in heaven who were influenced by these messages.
RISU's English-language webpage posted the story on 7 August 2007.