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Jonathan Cahn spoke Wednesday as the guest keynote speaker for the Global United Fellowship Summit at the United Nations in New York. In his speech, he exhorted believers to consider what it means to be light in the world.
"Those who call themselves by His name, the disciples of Messiah, bear this charge: they must be the light of the world," Cahn said. "Light is an active agent. It doesn't conform to its surroundings, but transforms them. Thus, the light of the world must impact and transform the world around it."
One obligation of the light, Cahn said, is fulfilling Jesus' instructions to provide for the least in society (Matt. 25:31-45).
"The agenda of the light is to shine into the darkness of need," Cahn said. "If we are the light of the world, then we must minister to the needy of this world. We must give food to the hungry, drink to the thirsty, refuge to the stranger, clothing to the naked, healing to the sick and compassion to the prisoner."
The Global United Fellowship Summit at the United Nations was co-organized by the Permanent Mission of the Bahamas, the Global United Fellowship and the Engr Aja Eze Foundation. The event focused on addressing the most pressing challenges of the 21st century. These issues included global poverty, sustainable development, religious persecution in the Middle East, economic trends and the place of faith in the modern world. Other speakers at the event included Elliston Rahming, Dr. Jeffrey Sachs, Dr. Catherine Tinker and pastor Steven Khoury.
"We have convened in the gathering place of the world's nations," Cahn said. "And we take note that nations and powers rise and fall. In the days when the empire of Assyria towered over the world's nations, the Word of God came through the prophet Isaiah, saying: 'They shall beat their swords into ploughshares and their spears into pruning hooks.' Two and a half thousand years later, the Assyrian empire is buried in the sands of the Middle East, but the word given to Isaiah is inscribed here on the walls of the United Nations.
"And those words are a sign to us that all things of this world pass away, but the Word of God endures forever, and thus we must never place our trust or stand on foundations that will crumble to dust. We must never follow the shifting opinions of man, but the eternal Word of God. We do not change the truth to conform to the world; we conform to the truth and change the world."
He later acknowledged the persecution of Christians and challenged the United Nations to take action.
"More Christians have been persecuted, brutalized and killed in the modern age than in any other," Cahn said. "Every year, tens of thousands of Christians are dehumanized, tortured or killed, and over 100 million Christians live in the darkness of persecution. This very body, the United Nations, adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which declares that everyone has the right to 'manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.' But then why is it that believers are being killed for their faith in our day, in our midst, and next to nothing is being done?"
Cahn concluded by reminding Christians of their God-given ability and mandate to change the culture.
"If we live in the day when the darkness is growing still darker, then it is time for the light of the world to shine even brighter," he passionately declared. "If the bad is going from bad to worse, then it is time for the good to go from good to great. We cannot appease evil or be intimidated by the dark. We must shine even more so. We must blaze against the night. It is the candle that shines in the night that lights up the world. And He has given us the power to shine. For we know that the power of God is greater than the world. And that by this power, the power of the Spirit, the power of hope, the power of goodness, the power of faith, the power of love, the power of God, we can do all things and overcome the darkness."
Cahn received a standing ovation at the end of his remarks. Several attendees praised his keynote speech.
Les Morrison called Cahn's words "awesome, anointed, powerful and inspirational." Bishop Harold Ray, who moderated the event with Ugoji Adanma Eze, said "the message was incredible."
Al Gilbert said Cahn's divine anointing was evident throughout his speech.
"I was blessed to see how God spoke through him so powerfully and how well it resonated with the attendees at this United Nations meeting," Gilbert said. "He spoke boldly that we should not be politically correct but be Godly correct and speak the truth of the Word of God."
Dr. John Smith, Executive Director of PastorCare West Michigan, says the Global United Fellowship summit was a historic event designed to encourage dialogue between different cultural groups, including Jewish, Hispanic and African-American communities. The summit's stated purpose was "to stand united for a culture of peace, multicultural understanding and global harmony as a counteractive agency to the rising threat of terror, and as promoters of sustainable development around the globe."
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