This is a continuation of interviews with Pastor Lewis Nelson. In Part 1, Sister Marilyn interviewed the Pastor. Sister Gail Hing interviewed the man of God at his home. We trust you will enjoy reading the interview and be blessed as you get a little insight into Pastor Lewis Nelson’s life.
Sis Gail: Let’s go back to the interview you had with Sis. Marilyn. In that interview, you mentioned that you and another Brother were preaching at the same church and neither of you were the Pastor. Could you explain that?
Pastor Nelson: When the church first started at Birchmount and Eglinton, myself and another pastor were together, and none of us were the Pastor. So the believers were asking, “Who is the Pastor?” We decided to pray, and the church elected the other minister as the Pastor. Well, after that minister left, there was a void in the church, and so they elected me to be the Pastor of that church at that time.
Sis Gail: You said that you had given up being a Pastor for 5 years, and still remained a member of the church. Can you walk me through that experience?
Pastor Nelson: Well, at one time after I became the Pastor, there was resentment from some of the people about me continuing to be in the office of a Pastor, and so one of the Deacons decided to ask the believers to choose him to be the Pastor, to which they agreed. I gave up the office and still remained as a member of the church. It was almost five years I sat under that Brother’s ministry, still worshipping the Lord, being a song leader, then a musician, and finally a member doing nothing, but I thank God for that experience.
Sis Gail: Tell me what are the main challenges of being a Pastor?
Pastor Nelson: Well, the main challenges of being a Pastor is (1) you have to feed the people with spiritual food, (2) the Pastor has to deal with the members’ problems, sometimes it would be financial problems, sometimes physical problems, sometimes emotional, and these are the challenges you have to face as a real genuine God-called Pastor. Sometimes you get to a spot where you say things that are not accepted, but you have to remain in the right spirit and atmosphere, being a Pastor.
Sis Gail: How did you become a Pastor again after not being Pastor for five years?
Pastor Nelson: There were some believers who were not attending church and they asked me if we can start a work, which I felt was the correct timing, as a Brother came from the United States and told me that God was fixing to use me again. So I took that as a vindication that God was directing me to be a Pastor one more time.
Sis Gail: Could you tell me if God ever spoke to you directly that you are a Pastor or were you called of God?
Pastor Nelson: Yes, when I was working with the Brother, I remembered that the believers had asked us who is the Pastor and I went to God and asked Him, “Who is the Pastor?”
Sometime after, I had a dream where I saw the Pastor doing something that was not right, and I heard an audible Voice that said, “You are the Pastor, and the burden of the people will be on your shoulder.” That is what the Voice said to me.
Sis Gail: Thank you. Have you at any point of your life questioned your calling, even though you heard a voice in the dream? Was there any situation that caused you to question it?
Pastor Nelson: Well, it is pretty hard to remember now, but indeed when some occasions arose, people would come against some of the things you taught. I would want to find out from God if really I was called to that Office. Every ministry goes through this period, even our Prophet did. At one time he wanted to leave the job as both a Pastor and a Prophet because of what the people were doing. So these challenges come to all Ministers.
Sis Gail: In the past, I have listened to many of your sermons and noticed that the emphasis was on repentance. However, as I continue to listen, I realized that the emphasis now is on the Holy Ghost. Could you tell me how the change came about, or the reason for the change?
Pastor Nelson: You mentioned the emphasis on repentance but it is more of cleaning up the lives, because according to what Peter said on the Day of Pentecost, he said repent first, and then be baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. So even in the Message, ‘The Five Definite Identifications of the true church’, the Prophet said, “the first thing is repentance.” Many came to this Message and they say they received our Prophet for this day, but many have not yet repented before they accepted the Message. And so they come with the same life they used to live, and accept it. But, first of all, and even the Prophet said that if one truly repented and be baptized in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ, God is under obligation to give that person the Holy Ghost. I emphasize now more on the Holy Spirit because in the Message called “What is the Holy Ghost given for,” our Prophet said that it is compulsory and essential, it is necessary that you must receive the Holy Ghost or you cannot come in the resurrection. In addition, the Prophet of God said that the Holy Ghost is Christ Himself living in you, to bring you to the rapture.
Sis Gail: Actually you answered another question – The Holy Ghost is Christ Himself leading you to the rapture. Again, I can see how important the Holy Ghost is in a Christian’s life. Also the Holy Ghost not only leads us to the rapture. Could you tell me the work of the Holy Ghost in a believer’s life?
Pastor Nelson: I would only say what Jesus said. He said, “When the Comforter comes, He will guide you into all truth,” and the Bible said those that have not the Spirit of God is none of His. So the Holy Ghost comes as the Prophet of God preached a Message on “My Guide.” The Holy Ghost is the one who teaches us, the Holy Ghost is the one who guides us into all truth, so first of all, without the Holy Ghost you will not come to truth, without the Holy Ghost you cannot understand the things of God. In the Message, ‘The Token,’ Brother Branham said that the theme of the apostles was, “Have you received the Holy Ghost since you believed?” and I believe that should be the theme of every Pastor that preaches the Prophet’s Message. The theme should be the Holy Ghost.