Stephan & Anne Christiansen pastor Jesus Church and lead a Bible school in Oslo, Norway. They love to equip young people in local churches to reach their cities with the gospel. This summer they led a team of young people to over fifty nations across Europe. Today we hear about how they are trying to start a Jesus Revolution.
Learn more about The Jesus Revolution: https://jesusrevolution.com/
Buy a copy of Anne Christiansen’s book, Love Story: https://jk.no/produkt/love-story-english-2/
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (00:01):
Stephan & Anne Christiansen pastor Jesus Church and lead a Bible school in Oslo, Norway. They love to equip young people in local churches to reach their cities with the gospel. This summer, they led a team of young people to over 50 nations across Europe. Today we hear about how they are trying to start a Jesus revolution.
Evangelism Podcast Host (00:38):
Welcome to the Evangelism Podcast with Dr. Daniel King, where Daniel interviews full-time evangelists, pastors, missionaries and normal everyday Christians to discover how they share their faith, their powerful testimonies, and amazing stories that will inspire you to reach people with the good news. And now here’s your host, missionary, and evangelist, Daniel King.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (01:02):
Welcome to the Evangelism Podcast. I’m Daniel King and I’m excited to tell people about Jesus. Today I have two very special guests with me, Stephan and Anna Christansen from Norway. Thank you for being on the Evangelism Podcast.
Stephan Christiansen (01:19):
Thank you so much. It’s great to be here. And Stefan, by the way, is how I would say my name in Europe.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (01:24):
Okay, well, right now you’re in America, Stefan.
Stephan Christiansen (01:29):
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (01:30):
Well, thank you so much for being with us today. Now you have been taking young people on mission trips across the continent of Europe, and this summer you did something very exciting. You took a group of young people to every nation in Europe. Tell me what did God do?
Anne Christiansen (01:51):
Wow, that was amazing. What we saw in Europe. It actually was all of spring and summer going into summer. And we visited 48 nations. We still have two nations that we’re going to do this fall because that’s the Pharaoh Islands and Iceland. But other than that, we went to every single nation together with a team of 60 young people. What a privilege. I mean, Stefan, you were there almost in every, I did
Stephan Christiansen (02:23):
The whole tour. I think you did the whole tour. I felt I had to be a part of the whole thing. And through the years, we’ve been working a lot in Europe. We’ve been in about 1100 cities since 1997 and doing evangelistic outreaches all over the place. We’ve sent out about 10,000 young people on short-term missions in Europe through the years as well. But then this dream came to us after the pandemic. How can we see a whole continent impacted at once? How can we see a harvest of souls across a whole continent and a whole generation of young people on fire for Jesus? So the 60 of us went in nine vans, equipment, light band preachers, everything. And it was probably by far, I think the greatest endeavor. If you think about logistics and all the practical matters. And 48 nations is a lot. So we typically did one major event in some of the smaller nations. In some of the bigger nations. We might have done two or three cities or for five in the uk, one of the largest large nations. And it was so encouraging. It was like really sparking the flame of youth revival on the whole continent. And we were so blessed to see what the Lord was doing.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (03:50):
And so tell me, what is the spiritual atmosphere like in Europe right now? A lot of people are saying that Europe is a post-Christian area, but I like to say that Europe is pre-Christian. It is ready to come to Jesus very quickly.
Anne Christiansen (04:10):
Oh, you are so right. It is ready. So it’s exactly that. Europe does not understand religion in connection with Jesus. Jesus is religion is not interesting for the Europeans. So it’s a great time to show that Jesus is not religion. It’s completely different, it’s relationship. So that’s the message that Europe really needs Everywhere. Some nations, we see that there are so many believers and they go to traditional churches, but they do not have a personal relationship with God. And they do not even know that God wants that. So I mean, Europe is such a wonderful mission field. So when we go, we go in the streets, we are in the schools, we are on the screens of course, but we really see that people are like, wow, I can have this personal relationship with God. You mean that Jesus came for that? Because religion, we think in many parts of the world that we have to climb up to God and become good enough for him to accept us. And something like that has been the understanding in Europe, I think for decades, ages for generations. So the message that we come with that Jesus is alive and well, and Jesus is ready, Jesus came down to become like us. That is a message that goes all across Europe and that is received everywhere. And we see the Holy Spirit lift up Jesus, drawing people to the cross and people having a new start, a new understanding really who Jesus is and what it means for them.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (06:00):
And so the name of your ministry is Jesus revolution. And a revolution is a radical change in society. What does a Jesus revolution look like?
Stephan Christiansen (06:12):
Well, if anything has ever been a revolution, it’s what happens when you are born again. When your sins are forgiven, you become a new creation in Christ Jesus. You are filled with the Holy Spirit. You go from darkness to light. You go from the kingdom of darkness to the kingdom of God, you become a part of his church. I mean, if anything was revolution, that’s revolution. So the interesting thing was that when we were seeking God for the name of this ministry back in 1997, we were too young to ever have heard about the Jesus Revolution in California back in the days. And we were just seeking God.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (06:46):
Yeah. Now it’s a popular movie, which I actually watched recently, and it made me cry because people were being baptized. I mean, it’s amazing how revolutionary the gospel is.
Stephan Christiansen (06:56):
Yes, it is. And here’s the thing, I mean, the gospel works everywhere. And so even though gospel Europe has got quite a rough spiritual climate compared with other parts of the world, but the gospel always works. So that’s why we need to preach it. We need to make it accessible to the young generation. And the special thing with Europe I support is that most young people have never really heard it really. So when they hear it preached in a way they can understand with power, with conviction, and through the presence of the Holy Spirit, so many young people are opening up their hearts. So we believe that it’s time to evangelize Europe. Of course, many, many nations of Europe, there’s 2.3% evangelical believers throughout Europe, 11, 12 nations, even less than 0.1% evangelical believers. So it is a continent that needs a move of the Holy Spirit. Many nations have never really seen, not just the revival, many nations have never even seen a reformation of any kind. So we need to sort of bring on a gospel army all across Europe and the world really. And we believe that together with believers like yourself, an evangelist all across the world, it’s time to really bring in the harvest of souls all across the world. And Europe is no exception.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (08:16):
Amen. Now you are from the nation of Norway. Yes. And the most famous evangelist from Norway is Aril Edvardsen. Did I say that? Right? Exactly. And he was a great evangelist from a very small village in Norway, but had a powerful ministry that impacted nations all over the world. And recently I was there and I was looking in their magazine. I saw a picture of a very young Anna and Stefan, that’s where they’re ministering. And so you grew up in some sense under his ministry. What are some of the lessons that you learned from him?
Anne Christiansen (08:56):
Oh, that’s many.
Stephan Christiansen (08:58):
That’s a lot.
Anne Christiansen (08:59):
Come on, Stephen. I mean, you traveled with him for how many
Stephan Christiansen (09:02):
Years? 10 years approximately?
Anne Christiansen (09:03):
Yeah. And we’ve been so close to him. We’re so thankful. We’ve learned so many things. First of all, you never start a meeting with a lie. You always have to be on time in everything you do.
Stephan Christiansen (09:19):
I think what I think first and foremost, there’s so many things that you can extract from his life. But the number one thing is probably how coming from a small place, a small nation or a small village is not a hindrance for a big vision. The Lord called Aril Edvardsen to be a world evangelist. He comes from a town or a village of 3000 people in that village. He built a center that could see at 4,000 people. He had 24 7 television satellite preaching the gospel in Arabic to the Arabic speaking world. He had crusades all across the world. He supported, I think about 20,000 or maybe more indigenous evangelists and church planters that he paid for. And he had five, 6 million students on his correspondence course. So those who got saved, he wanted them to do a 16 week course. So he had offices around the world, and this was the old days.
So you would typically have a lesson, write assignments sent into the office, get a reply back in the five, 6 million students fulfilling that. And so he wasn’t just content with response. He wanted to make sure they were disciples and all these people who were also saved, they had radio programs in 180 nations around the world. And all of this happening from a microscopic village, seven hours drive from the capital of Norway, really shows if God is calling you, if God has given you a vision, your nation, your geography, the size of your area is no hindrance. God can do exceedingly, abundantly above anything that we ask a think according to his power that is at work in us. And his life is just a great example about that really.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (11:09):
Now you have a church in Oslo and also a Bible school, and you bring young people on these mission trips to Europe and to other parts of the world. And so when I was hearing about your mission trip this year, my son Caleb is in eighth grade. He’s 13 years old. I was thinking, oh, that would be so wonderful to send him on an adventure like this. So if someone is listening and they want to get connected with you, maybe they want to come to the Bible school, maybe they want to send their young people on one of these great mission trips with you. What is your website? How can they find out more information about the Jesus Revolution? Well, they
Stephan Christiansen (11:48):
Can just go to jesus revolution.com and they can join in the summer. We are going to Prague in 2024, and young people are usually coming from 25, 30 nations. And also increasingly young people from over here, from the US are joining in. And this is in the end of July in 2024. And then if they want to do a year for God, they can do it through our training center in Oslo. They can do it from Rome. They could do it from Sofia and Bulgaria. They could do it from Belgium. They can do it from, sorry,
Anne Christiansen (12:20):
Did you say Rome?
Stephan Christiansen (12:21):
Rome, Italy. Yeah. Or from the Ukraine. And so there’s different opportunities also in plugging in. If people would like to set aside a year and evangelize in Europe,
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (12:34):
What a tremendous opportunity. Alright, last word. What do you feel that Jesus is saying to the church during this time?
Anne Christiansen (12:43):
Oh, when people follow me, that’s the most important thing that we can ever do. And that’s the most challenging word as well. Follow me. Jesus said, and I will make you fishers of men. I think we’re coming back to discipleship. Really, it is like the word that in Antioch, it was the first time that the disciples were called Christians. And why? Because they reminded people about Christ. And now we call ourselves Christians and it’s time for us to come back to being disciples. And Jesus actually promised us that if I focus on the following, he’s going to do the making in me of becoming a fisher of men. This means stepping out of my comfort zone and really starting to come into the love of God for people, for others that will make me being so interested in others, being willing to listen, being willing to take part of people’s lives in our neighborhoods, schools, universities, streets, wherever in the workplace. So I think that’s a word for the church all over the world. It’s about everyone, isn’t it? And it’s about reaching everyone. And it can only be done when everyone gets involved in reaching everyone.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (14:11):
You sound like a true evangelist.
Stephan Christiansen (14:14):
And thinking about the need for the gospel to be preached all across the world and how God needs ordinary Christians and believers of all kinds and evangelists and churches to just reengage with the great commission. Anna, you were saved because an American evangelist, Tia Osborne came to preach the gospel in our city Oslo. And you were a 22 year old girl. And that’s the beginning of a revolution.
Anne Christiansen (14:40):
There were posters all over my city Oslo talking about this campaign, these meetings with TL Osborne. I had never heard of him. And I got so provoked actually because I was invited by people everywhere come to this crusade campaign. I went there to find more reasons why I would never ever become a hallelujah. And one guy actually said, you don’t dare to come, do you? Yeah, that’s the thing that he was so smart. He said, oh, you’re not coming. Oh, so you don’t dare to go. And I was like, come on. No one is going to ever have that on me, that I didn’t dare to go. So I went there and I never planned to stay. I was just going to be able to say, check that I went there. No one can say I didn’t dare. But I stood there and I listened to the gospel message preached by Teal Osborne, and it was so special when he was calling people forward to receive Jesus.
I was running forward receiving Jesus as Lord of my life. And he was pointing at me and he was saying, you are a Jesus woman now. I was like, what? I’m a Jesus woman. Now what am I going to do? What does a Jesus woman do? How does she live? What is she doing? I went and bought myself a huge big Bible. I thought a Jesus woman must have a big Bible. At least I was sitting in my home, I was smoking cigarettes. I was blowing the smoke away to see the scripture. And I felt, and then I felt one day the Lord spoke to me and said, Anna, can you picture me with a cigarette in my mouth? I was like, no, no, Lord, of course not. You’re Jesus. You’re the Messiah. Of course, you’re the son of God. You don’t smoke cigarettes. I understand that.
He said, but Anna, I do now because I live in you now. I was like, what am I going to do? And he said, turn it over to me and I’ll help you. And since that day, I never smoked a cigarette. And I also, I met the Osborne many, many years later because Stefan was asked to interpret for him. And he said to me, Anna, write a book. Call it love story and I’ll write the foreword in it. And he did. I wrote the book. I was in prayer writing that book, and he wrote the foreword in it. And it’s in English, in English now for the first time in it’s been in Norwegian, but now it’s in English. And my story is there a story of God’s love revolution in somebody’s life.
Evangelism Coach Daniel King (17:30):
Amen. Well, we’ll put a link to the book in the description on the podcast. So if you’re interested hearing more about Anna and Stefan Christensen, you can learn more about them. And thank you guys so much for being on the Evangelism Podcast. Thank
Anne Christiansen (17:44):
You, thank you, thank you.
Evangelism Podcast Host (17:46):
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Evangelism Coach Daniel King (18:50):
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Evangelism Podcast Host (20:10):
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