In the Eyes of a Hare Krishna Devotee

John C. Rankin (January 19, 2014)

On the night before my wedding in August 1977, I had to pick up a friend at the Pittsburgh International Airport, just before the rehearsal dinner. I was in a rush, and en route through the terminal I paused for a moment to check where I was going. As I did, a Hare Krishna woman devotee tried to pin an old flower on my lapel and ask for money.

I knew the routine and had engaged in discussion with Hare Krishna devotees before. But I did not have the time, so I gently put up my hands to prevent her from pinning on the flower, and she tried to persuade me otherwise. So I said simply, “No thank you. I am a believer in Jesus.”

She replied, “I believe in Jesus too.” It was an invitation to a long discussion, but then the Holy Spirit spoke through me in a clear fashion, and as I watched it happen, saying “No you don’t.” As I did, I saw demons jump back in her eyes, and she began to utter her mantra and turned away.

I would never presume such certainty for someone I do not know, apart from a good discussion where I had the evidence (see Matthew 7:1-2,15-20). But here the Holy Spirit knew, and he gave me for the right words at that moment. And as with my last post from Ohio State, I pray that such clarity led the young woman to consider the Jesus of the Bible.


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House of Lords 17 October 2017

Text of John Rankin’s address on the occasion of the 500th annive5rsary of the Reformation.