Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God; (2 Corinthians 3:5)
My last name is: Sanda, and the first name: Vasile
I do not want to boast, because it is not useful (2 Corinthians 12:1) and if it were, I would do it rather by talking about my weaknesses (vs. 9). But here, I will write something about what God has done in my life, how He caused me to be born in 1961, Teleorman, Romania, from a family of simple people.
My parents went to the Orthodox church (rarely, maybe 2-3 times a year) and so did I while I was in the country, but I never saw or read the Bible, I heard that it was forbidden to have the Bible at home.
After finishing the 8 primary classes I continued my studies in high school in Bucharest, after which I worked on milling machine (almost 6 years) at two companies in the capital.
I practiced karate for many years and had a passion for literature, I really enjoyed reading, it was of course the desire to discover and know more about the things that surrounded me, those in the present but especially those in the past.
At the age of 27, while Communism1 was in power, I wanted to leave the country at any cost, but since then people were not allowed to travel freely outside the country, I proposed to do it illegally. I wanted very much to leave the country to reach the West. And after two attempts, at the right time God allowed me to escape from Romania and reach Austria. Once I got there, after only a few weeks, I first heard about the Word of God and then I also received a Bible. I started reading Scripture, but in the evening in secret because I had heard that it is for the fearful and the weak (this may be true, 1 Corinthians 2:3) but at that time I was a karate trainer and very well known, it was hard for me to know that someone could see me and then they would have said about me being scared and weak. There, I was staying in a guesthouse in St. Gilgen near Salzburg, waiting for the visa for Canada.
There were other people from other neighboring countries with Austria, (or further away), among them some Romanians. We were all about 60 fellows. Among the Romanians there was a man (Costea N.) who told me about faith in God and advised me to read the Bible, because there, he said, is written everything needed for salvation. There, I discovered that God can forgive sins, and those who return from their sinful path to Him can find the way of life, and since then I began to read more and more often in the Bible, because I wanted to find out more about what the word of God says. During the day I was asking questions about salvation, and in the evening I was checking the Scriptures to see if what I was told was from the Bible.
And if before I had a pretty good opinion of myself, as most have (Proverbs 20:6), believing that I am a righteous man and that I can never be like the evil ones, that is, I do not steal, I do not seek to deceive and not to kill anyone, etc., was not so when I saw from the Bible what the requirements of God are for a righteous and pure man. Reading the Bible, I realized how wrong I was and was ashamed of my sinful life and how many sins I was hiding. Then I repented, regretting my past as hypocritical and sinful. Then I learned that Jesus, the Son of God, died crucified on the cross and that He was the atonement sacrifice that God prepared to be for the forgiveness of my sins and even for the sins of the whole world (1 John 2:2).
I believed this and I did my Lord, and since then I have put my life and hope in His hand. Immediately I was simply flooded with the joy that I was forgiven of my sins and that I escaped the burden that I was carrying, but especially that I could have salvation. Since then my life has acquired a new meaning.
I was going to a church in Lintz, where Romanian was spoken, and there “believers” from several denominations, but most of them were Pentecostals and Baptists (I didn't know anything about these religions or the fact that they could be fake) and of course they were still among them some Adventists, Evangelists and Orthodox also come to visit the assembly. I thought (at that time) all those who came to the congregation, that there were people who left the country like me, gathered there to find out the Word of the Lord. I loved listening to the Word and reading the Bible and everywhere I went I didn't stop talking about the salvation that God offers. I was talking to everyone I met, either at the meeting or in other places where I walked. I was so ardent to confess and speak of God and His Word, that everywhere I went I spoke about Him, and even when I travel out of Austria. Yes, in January 1990 I left Austria (from the West, the place I longed for most), only a few weeks after learning about the life that man can have in Jesus Christ, and I returned to Romania to say to many more of the salvation that people can receive through faith in the Word of truth, and of course to see my family and to speak to them too.
I was not associated with any cult or organization, but I preached the Word I read from the Bible. And what a great joy it was in me for not being afraid of the Communists anymore, for being trapped by them and for losing the opportunity to go to a free country in the West. My desire for the word was far greater than any fear and worry, because I trusted in God. It was happened just a few days after the events2 of December 1989, I left by car to Romania, but everywhere I arrived (either in Austria or Hungary, or Romania) I was announcing the word of anyone I met.
In the country (Romania) I stayed only one day, although I had planned to stay 2-3 weeks, but this was not possible, because upon my arrival in Bucharest, I was notified that I had received the visa for Canada (after 16 months of stay in Austria), and so I had to get back. Although, I stayed only one day in the country, I preached the word everywhere I went, because I had no other subject but faith in God and the salvation He gives through grace. I think I spoke to more than 200 people, but I was surprised by the disbelief of the people I was talking to, because most of them said that there is no God, and so not a few times I was ridiculed. Not even my closest friends or acquaintances before, nor did they want to listen to me, or even say that I lost my mind, and some of my relatives bypassed me.
But it was even worse with the parents, who when they heard that I had repented and didn't go to the Orthodox church anymore, were so saddened that they told me not to consider myself their son anymore. But I never complained because they treated me like this, yet I was glad. But, because they didn't get the word, I was sad of course. When I returned, I only stayed in Austria one day, and the next day I left for Canada, the country where I settled and where I have lived since.
I arrived in Canada in the early 1990s and a few days later, in fact not even a week, I started going to a non-denominational Protestant church in Hull, a town near the country's capital, Ottawa.
But, as I didn't know French at first, (or English) I couldn't communicate much with those around me, so I was always reading it from the Bible.
At that time I only listened to the word of God in the Bible and received all the teachings from Scripture, but after completing the language learning courses (French, then English) and I could easily communicate with those around me, something changed. because I let myself attracted to the teachings of men, wrongfully called "theological" or "biblical".
After that, I attended several Bible courses at the church where I was going, "Le Chemin du Calvaire", (now called, "Le Chemin", http://www.lechemin.ca).
In the church I worked with all the dedication and I was eager for God, I wanted to serve the Lord and not infrequently I was invited to preach in the local church but also in other churches near our locality. I even went with the pastor and a few members from the congregation in 1993 in Romania. But in 1995, I left everything in Canada and left with my family (my wife and our four children) to work as a missionary in Romania, not with salary, nor did I leave with any understanding that I would receive any payment. And after two years, I was ordained pastor at the church in Hull, Quebec. In Romania I worked for three and a half years, during which time I started the first church (Harul = Grace, in Brâncoveanca).
I did this missionary work with all sincerity and I was always trying not to do something wrong. In the first three years I was not reading anything but the Bible alone, but over time I was attracted to reading books and sermons by some (false) teachers or pastors, and even though at the assembly I was talking about the Bible, I also brought lessons that came from those books and not infrequently I was inspired by the sermons of other preachers I had heard. Thus it is done that in fact I was doing what was not to be done, I mixed the teachings of God that came from the Scriptures with the teachings that came from men, and this is condemnable and I ignored the fact that we mixed straws with wheat (Jeremiah 23:28 ). After I returned to Canada, I started a meeting in Aylmer, along with another pastor. Later it became a church (Maranatha Full Gospel Fellowship) in which French was spoken. After almost a year, I returned with my family to Romania once again, where I stayed another two years. There I started a new group in Craiova, and so were the bases of the 2nd church (Grace). At that time, about 50 people were coming to the meeting. These were the two missionary works we did in Romania.
When I returned to Canada, I served as associate pastor in a church in Gatineau (Eglise Source Abondante-Abondante Source Church) for several years and was part of an Independent Assemblies Federation: "Independent Assemblies of God" http://www.iaogcan.com.
Over the years I have been invited to preach many times and have attended many meetings, not only in Canada or Romania, but also through the USA, France, Hungary, etc. But, although I was more and more appreciated and many spoke well of me, yet sometimes I was filled with fear because of the Word, because I knew it was written: "Woe to you, when all people will speak well of you! “... (Luke 6:26).
Did I understand all this? Maybe not, but I know that I was afraid.
So, even though I was teaching, exhorting, preaching, and often participating in various evangelical works, I now know that the Lord did not like my life (Isaiah 64:6).
In Canada, I worked among others as a salesman and manager (supervisor) in a store, then I was a volunteer on the Board of Directors of a Gatineau Community Association, "Le Vent dans les Lettres" and I was also a coach (volunteer) for two football teams in Cantley, Quebec, then I was a security guard, karate coach, taxi driver and also soldier in the Canadian army until 2009. After leaving the army I worked briefly in the administrative team of a taxi company. Before I went to church very often; 3-4 times a week or sometimes even several times. I generally lived a life after all the "Christian rules", rules made by the religious world. But I didn't know then and I didn't think that it was a "false Christianity". Now I know it was actually false and that do not resemble with true Christianity at all.
Then, even though I was zealous and often preached the Word, I was still searching for the truth and I researched many things to gain wisdom, but now I say it, as Solomon says in Ecclesiastes 7:23, I said, I will be wise; but it was far from me. And I think the truth stayed far away from me.
At times, I was puzzled by the fact that there are so many religions, and the believers so different from each other. However, they all called themselves "Christians" or "brothers." Even if I was among them, and I was like them, I still couldn't believe that this is true. Often, I was thinking, and I thought there must be somewhere, someone who may know about "the truth." But who?
Also at the time, I had some questions that I was asking myself, maybe from the time I started going to church, namely: "Is there a canon, a model, or a "safe" directive? Is it a rule "accurate" to define the clean from the unclean? Because I wanted not to be part of the world. This is so that I may obey the commandments of the Lord and listen to the word that says, "... the world is crucified toward me, and I unto the world" (Galatians 6:14), but I have not found it. I found, however, many people's views, for example most said, that pastors or preachers, know the "truth", though they unfairly said this, because it is not true. Though perhaps most often they behaved as if they alone knew everything. And if anyone saw something wrong with these leaders, the closest or perhaps others in the church leadership, they would surely defend the guilty and often said: It is written, "do not judge" and most of the time, any observations they made are ended up here. And if, however, someone did not stop there, the person who made that referral was marginalized and then, of course, sometimes he would be dismissed from the assembly.
One thing I did receive, however not from the teachings of men but from the Lord, for He showed me what His "grace" is, that is, the unmerited gift (Ephesians 2:8) that He makes to people for salvation. Even though I had a strong desire to learn as much as I could about the Word of the Lord, and I read the Bible many times, even though I studied it a lot, there were still so many things I didn't understand. I remember, it was a time when I was reading more and more from every source, and for many years I went to schools where I studied Theology and History of Religions, History of Christians, Patristic (Church Fathers), and History of Bible People. I was searching through all kinds of sources, historical or theological and I attended courses of two Faculties of theology (Université Acadia in Montreal and St-Paul University, in Ottawa), I then enrolled in the Master's degree, but in the 2nd year (two years ago, when the Lord gave me grace to know the truth) I stopped and did not continue. This is to be obedient to the word of the Lord that says: Stop, son, listen to the teaching, if it departs from the wise teachings. (Prov. 19:27) So, I stopped following people's teachings because I saw how leaders in general (here include both students, because some of them were pastors like me, but also teachers who were all pastors) does not follow the path of truth.
However, God who is full of kindness made it like at the end of 2008, when I was wandering and searching and documenting about the "Sabbath" through books, magazines and other theological or historical sources or on the Internet to find the teachings of a church from US, named "A True Church", web address: http://www.atruechurch.info/.
There, I came across teachings that provoked real challenges in me and of course I wondered if I was on the path of truth or not, and I saw that my teachings were not from the truth, as they were from others, (from which I was taught and with whom I had fellowship) and I was struck by the fear of God that I was not on the path of truth but on the wrong way. And right at the beginning of our discussion when I talked to this man he did not hesitate for a moment to tell me that if I continue in the state I was in before I will end up in hell, yet I listened to him with all my attention what he was telling me and I did not confront him, but on the contrary, I was looking rather to see where I was wrong (but not after what a man says) but what the biblical truth says. And after several weeks I asked to go visit their meeting in Oklahoma. Together with my wife, I visited the church in Oklahoma in October 2009, and I can say that I saw for the first time true Christians living by Bible principles. I don't think there were more than 50 people with children at all, and I only stayed there for two days. After I came to the true faith, I was baptized into the truth and knew that I was saved.
But as soon as I returned home, I began to study the Word of the Lord again; but from now on I was remembering "absolutely every word", checking verse by verse and seeking to apply in my life all the teachings that came from Scripture. Then I began to check if the teachings Darwin Fish wrote on that site of their church came from "truth," that is from the Bible and I saw that they all had biblical support. Also, I saw that the essence of the topics he was dealing with was very different from all the teachings I had heard up until then through schools by those who spoke to me or through reading many books, his teachings were only from Scriptures and in all the supremacy of God was present. They all had biblical support, and I understood them so well as if I had always heard them, and so I enjoyed each article in part because they were based on Scripture, the word of the Lord. Since then I seek to live through this "Truth" and without doubting Him. The Lord Jesus says: "It is written," Man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes out of the mouth of God. "(Matthew 4: 4), because every word of the Lord (without exception) is important. I understand that is a big difference between a man who has knowledge of what is written in the Bible and another that is in the truth.
I knew the Lord was merciful to me. I understood that before I worshiped idols and not the true God of the Bible, that is why I humbled myself and repented because I had strayed far from the truth and because I was on the "wide path".
Then I began to see more clearly the meaning of the Scriptures and realized how far from the truth I was. I have received understanding and knowledge to what happens to all those who unjustly say that they are Christians who walk the wide path (Matthew 7:13) and who do not actually obey "every word" of God (Luke 4: 4) but wander far from the truth that they will not enter into the kingdom of God. Then, of course, I was struck by the true fear of God and His Word, and my heart was trembling with the fear of the Lord and I was terrified. I humbled myself before the Lord, believed everything He says, and from that time I sought to obey only the word of the Bible, because I understood that the Word is God (John 1:1). From then on I was paying attention to every word in Scripture and I learned to take heed to the strength of His anger and His wrath (Psalm 90:11). With trust in God and His Word I rejected the teachings of false Christianity, regretting the old way, and repented of my ignorance and wandering, but also of the filthy deeds, that is, those done without God, then of sins such as: lie, fornication, idolatry, but also of my credulity (Romans 16:18).
I admit that I understand in part, as it is written: Now I know in part; but then, I will fully know, ... (1 Corinthians 13:12), and I think there is a limit in the word, that is a true believer speaks the words of God and does not say any useless words.
If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God ... (1 Peter 4:11)
I understand that if anyone seeks wisdom, he should begin by being afraid of God (Psalm 111:10), this being the basis. Then, only if it is God's will (Matthew 11:27) he can know who the God of truth is (Isaiah 65:16).
Subsequently, I received an understanding of the word that refers to the thoughts of the Lord, that they are totally different from the thoughts of man, this being valid for all people. It is valid for any religious man (regardless of religion) but also for the one who says that he is not religious, whether or not he claims to be someone, because it is written: For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55:8-9)
After all, I sought to fight for the faith that was given to the saints once and for all (Jude 3), and I began to speak to others about "truth" ... because we have the same spirit of faith, according to what is written. : "We believed, therefore we spoke!" And we believe and that is why we speak (2 Corinthians 4:13). Then, I began to expose the false teachers and to oppose their teachings. Also, it is not time to remember about all the attempts I went through. I will only say that there were not a few, but God removed me from everything according to His plan (1 Corinthians 10:13).
I have understood that no one comes to Christ unless drawn to the Father (John 6:44) and so no one can come to the truth unless given to him by God. But when he is from God he can understand, and this is simply His "gift" (Romans 9:18) so no one could say that through teachings, human effort, or self-cleansing he came to the truth, because no one knows God. It is as clear as possible that no one can come to Him unless it is called, only then does that person come to the Father through Jesus (John 14: 6). I came to know the truth because of God (1 Timothy 2: 4), and yes, I considered all the things that were previously valuable to me as garbage to earn Jesus, as it is said, "For He has lost all, and I count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ ”(Philippians 3: 8), and for me these are not just words. From now on, the material things are no longer worth to me and I thank the Lord that I am no longer concerned with them or with the threads (Galatians 5:24), because He helped me not to walk after them.
In May 2010, I went back to Romania to talk to people about the truth, and of course I went to those in the church of Grace (now called Grace Church, Plopii-Slavitesti) to tell them what the Bible says, to keep all the commandments, but they rejected the true teachings and even they said I was the one who is wrong. They said they wanted to continue in the previous teachings, so I broke off any connection with them, as the commandment says in Ephesians 5:11; 1 Timothy 6:3-5; 2 Timothy 2:20-22. Then everywhere I traveled in the country or in the city, either in Romania or abroad (Canada, Israel or Greece), I talked to people about the God of the Bible, whether they were listening or not (Ezekiel 2:7).
One thing is obvious: people seek excuses and take pride in their wisdom and religion (Romans 1:22), rather than receiving the "Truth". They seek to justify themselves and say they know God, so they are not interested in listening to any other teachings. And if before I was looking with delight at the impressive number of great people who came to the meeting, now on the contrary, because I understand the word of the Lord who says: narrow is the gate, narrow is the path that leads to life, and few are those who find it (Matthew 7:14), I now understand that there are few who find this narrow path and that only those who are born of God can hear the words of God.
But he that heareth not, is not of God (John 8:47), and of course, those who do not hear are astray: But we are of God; he that knoweth God heareth us; He that is not of God heareth us not. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of wandering. (1 John 4:6)
This is why I want to make people known everywhere; but not only do I want it, but it must also be done because it is thus commanded, "Go into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but whoever does not believe will be condemned." (Mark 16:15-16) I tell everyone to seek to come to the truth and to love him (2 Thess. 2:10) not to listen to false teachers (2 Peter 2:1) but to fight for the true faith (Jude 1:3), and to keep all the commandments otherwise they will all perish unless they truly repent (Luke 13:5).
As we know from Scripture that "there is no righteous man on earth to do good without sinning" (Ecclesiastes 7:20), perhaps I could sin without my will; The Bible shows that this state of sin is in me, and if that happens, I confess my sin and I repent (1 John 1:9), then seek not to repeat that mistake, but to live by the word of the Lord, receiving His exhortation and rebuke (Prov. 6:23).
It is possible that the Lord himself will allow me to do something wrong, to try me (2 Chronicles 32:31), or perhaps to try others (1 Kings 20:36), and He will do this to try people, so that no one looks at a human (I'm talking about myself or anyone else). Because man is subject to weaknesses (James 5:17), therefore the target for obedience must be Christ, as the Father said, "This is my beloved Son: Hear him" (Mark 9:7).
From now on, my goal is to remain in Him, seeking to obey and keep His teachings in order to fulfill what is written: "Whoever abides in Him does not sin ..." (1 John 3: 6).
How many people have I met so far, who are in truth, who seek wisdom as silver and walk after it as a treasure (Prov. 2: 4)? In fact, apart from that group in the USA, which I talked about before, I have never met anyone here in Canada, but not in Romania, and I can say that I have not met even in another part of the world where I went. Of course, this does not mean that there are no other believers. The Bible says there are certainly others. It is written that there is at least one Rechabite (Jeremiah 35:18-19), but one remnant of Jews in the world (Romans 11:2-5, 25). But I have stated that I have not personally met other disciples of Christ yet to be convinced that they are in the truth, and that they are among those who continue in the faith (Rom 2:7; 1 John 2:3-5). Also, I can say that I do not cease to pray to the Lord that He will do so that I can meet and to know these people, that I may rejoice with them and be in fellowship with those who call the Lord of a pure heart (2 Timothy 2:22). Yes, I very much wish to meet other saints who are waiting and who love the coming of the Lord from the heart, but I know that the days we live in are evil and that the devil, the old serpent deceives the whole world (Revelation 12:9). Through the assemblies, it is clear that most of them have only a form of godliness, because they do not seek God, but are in fact lost (2 Tim. 3:1-5; 4:3; 2 Peter 2:2 ).
The church of God, as described in Scripture, is not a large and popular organization or denomination. Therefore, the Lord Himself speaking of those who follow Him and form His Church, says, "Do not be afraid, little flock ..." (Luke 12:32). These are described as following the Lord on the "narrow" and difficult path that few would have been willing to follow in this our sinful times (Matthew 7:13-14).
So, I want to make it clear, that I have come back from what is worldly and natural and from now on stand openly against lies, falsehood, hypocrisy and of course all that is called today's "Christianity". , the way that is against the truth and which by their false teachings lead people astray. I know well that my person is not important and I did not want to present myself here, but God, the Creator of all things (Colossians 1:16), to say that everything happens as the Lord wants and that He, nothing surprises Him because: All things were made through Him; and nothing that was done was not done without Him. (John 1:3). And, regarding most of the articles and teachings posted on this site, I mentioned that someone else (Darwin Fish) wrote them and I only translated. So, my intention was not and is not to talk about myself or who wrote, but to through this presentation I want only to glorify the Lord Jesus. He is worthy of all praise, I didn't deserve anything, but He did everything for me. He brought me out of the darkness and shadow of death where I lay, and set my feet in the way of peace, bringing me to light (Luke 1:79). So I want to introduce Him to show His compassion and mercy toward me, His servant. The Lord is Sovereign, He has mercy on whom He wills, and hardens whom He wills (Romans 9:18). So, the most important thing here and everywhere is God, to Him be all the glory, the honor and the dominion for ever and ever. Amen. (Revelation 5:13)
- If anyone teaches otherwise and does not consent to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which accords with godliness, he is proud, knowing nothing, but is obsessed with disputes and arguments over words, from which come envy, strife, reviling, evil suspicions, useless wranglings of men of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means of gain. From such withdraw yourself. (1 Timothy 6:3-5)
PS. I wrote this topic "About me" in 2010, and the English translation now in January 2020. Therefore I have to make a remark. In 2018, God made me know a man in Romania who came to the truth.
1Censorship, political imprisonment, labor camps, police terror, political crime, repression of individual freedoms, control of the population by agents of secret services. All these are only part of the practices existing in the totalitarian dictatorship in Romania.