Great Controversy Amazing Stories

Amazing Stories

of people reading and sharing The Great Controversy!

Measuring the Value

In 2014, JB was participating in a GYC preconference outreach in Louisville , KT.  On the last hour of the last day of canvassing before their door-to-door work was ending, JB approached a house on a cul-de-sac where a group of four guys were partying outside.  Praying for God’s wisdom and power to work on these men’s hearts, JB approached the house as the owner directed the men to go inside and clean up their mess on their way in.  “What are you doing?” the owner asked the approaching young man. JB began his canvass. The man’s expression seemed to indicate he was hearing just-another-sales-pitch until he saw a book with a blue cover and an American flag.  JB began sharing the details of The Great Controversy. The man’s eyes lit up as he interrupted, “Give me a second, I will be right back.”

Soon he was back with one of the original Great Controversy magabooks.  He was cradling it as something precious.  The book had post-it notes and dog-eared pages. The owner was in tears as he said, “Ten years ago, I had a girl come to my door and show me this book. I really wanted to get it, but I couldn’t afford to donate anything.  This young lady was raising money for a scholarship to go to school and I felt terrible because I didn’t have any money. But she said that she would give me the book as long as I promised to read it.”

The man read the gift book from cover to cover multiple times.  He also loaned it to his mom and she read it.  Wonderfully, his mother converted from atheism to Christianity! Other members of the family read his Great Controversy as well.  JB could see the evidence from the highlights on many of the pages as the man shared his story.

Then the man pulled out a $100 bill and said, “I know this doesn’t come close to paying for the value of this book because it has changed my life, but I want you to have this… and can I get another copy to give to my friend?”  Before the conversation was over, the man had a new resolve to be more spiritually focused as he asked for the address of JB’s church and signed up for Bible studies. His life, as well as his mother’s spiritual journey, were forever changed because they decided to read The Great Controversy.

Couldn't Put the Book Down

One day, Kevin Crosby got on his knees and asked God to teach him what he needed to learn.   He was a seasoned student of Scripture and convinced that he would never change his mind on the teachings he believed were true, but his marriage was strained from theological differences. He also encountered a lack of harmony on biblical topics in the different faith communities.  

Baptized at the age of 16, Kevin started consistently studying the Bible two years later.  Drawn to Christian apologetics, he began reaching out and defending the faith at every opportunity he could get.  In the process, he discovered a lot of confusion.  A friend encouraged him to, “just go to God, and he will direct your path.” 

A few years into marriage, Kevin’s conversations with his wife Sophia turned to Scripture as he supported her return to church, but their differences in beliefs frequently ended with tension.  As often as she gave up trying to help Kevin understand her doctrinal beliefs, she would be reinspired to ask him another question.  These discussions eventually lead Kevin to join two separate Bible studies led by pastors.  Soon, some of his long held doctrinal beliefs started to fall to the ground.  Around this same time, his wife recommended that he read The Great Controversy. Kevin resisted as she persisted.  It took three months of asking before Kevin decided he would start reading the book.  Once he began, he couldn’t put it down.  Amazed by the book’s history of Protestantism and surprised by the lack of general public knowledge about the content, Kevin started studying the biblical books of Daniel and Revelation.  He was blown out of the water.  He had never come across such prophetic understanding in all his years committed to Bible study and Christian apologetics. 

It has been one year since Kevin took a deep dive into The Great Controversy and the books of Daniel and Revelation.   Kevin not only continues to study the Bible, but he is now teaching other people the truths he has found so important and relevant to the world.  Kevin reflects on his learning journey, “I was amazed to see history lining up with the word of God. My wife and I study together and we are now ready to go out to the streets.”  The Crosby family have a supply of The Great Controversy books on hand to share with people they meet as God impresses them. Kevin believes it is a book everyone needs to read.  “I came out of Babylon and now I see clearly.”  Kevin is 100% sold out for Jesus.  He now understands the war that began in Heaven and continues to be played out on Earth.  He feels an urgency to educate people regarding the controversy surrounding them. “I want to keep giving people the truth so they can recognize the counterfeit.” How many more minds will be changed—only time will tell!     

"No matter what you say, I will never change my mind."
Kevin Crosby
Spoken to his wife before reading The Great Controversy
and digging deeper into the Bible

A Reading that Turned into Thousands

Tragedy struck Bill Martsch’s family on a summer day while his aunt was visiting his German grandparents in southern Idaho.  Her little girl, still in her toddler years, fell into an irrigation ditch and drowned.  At the funeral, Bill’s grieving aunt heard the preacher say something that troubled her greatly and sent her on a biblical search to learn the truth.  While she was seeking answers, she was given a copy of The Great Controversy.

It wasn’t long before she was convinced that what she was reading was correct.  After further study, she was baptized into her new faith that diverged from her Lutheran roots.  She also shared The Great Controversy with all twelve of her siblings, which included Bill’s dad, Ted Martsch.   

Ted read and re-read the book many times in his life.  He too joined the church and was soon off to Pacific Union College to study Theology.  He later married and became a family man who loved sharing the gospel with everyone he met.  His evangelistic zeal led to over two decades of ministry as a literature evangelist all over the United States. 

One example of his missional impact can be seen in the life of a lady he met in southeastern Idaho.  The Japanese mom bought a copy of The Great Controversy and after reading it, she became a Christian!  Thirty years went by and her daughter was searching for answers as she was going through tough times.   While cleaning out her deceased mother’s garage,  she found The Great Controversy book that converted her mom.  Intrigued, she read the book.  That decision led her into a whole new life.  She followed her mother’s footsteps in baptism and joined the church.

God’s work through the extended Marsch family will continue it’s expansive influence.  From the aunt’s siblings (her wildest brother claimed there was no God until he gave his heart to Christ just before he died), to her children, to her husband’s late conversion, to the thousands of people Ted shared the gospel with in literature evangelism, to the faithfulness of Ted’s son Bill and his family, their impact ripples through lives and continues to bring love and hope to a fallen world.  Remarkably, all of these stories can be linked to the historic day when Bill’s aunt began reading an extraordinary book called The Great Controversy.

From Humiliation to Healing

In 2002, Donald Owen faced the most humiliating situation of his entire life.  Having recently been confronted by his employer regarding an issue of sexual integrity, Donald scoured through his work computer to remove all evidence of his misbehavior.  In the process, he accidently destroyed the company-owned hard drive.  He was fired on the spot.

Soon after that, Donald decided to disclosed to his fiancé the secrets that he had been hiding.  His honesty nearly ended their relationship.  After working through some tough issues, the wedding bells rang and married life began. 

A few years later, Donald had a new employer and he was once again surfing the internet, but this time, he was looking for spiritual content!  He searched for faith-based websites to find information that could help him make sense of the world he had been aimlessly wandering through.  He hadn’t started reading the Bible yet, but it was during this time that he received a copy of The Great Controversy.

From the opening chapter, Donald couldn’t put the book down as he nurtured his growing interest in end-time prophecies. The Great Controversy connected him firmly to history and opened his eyes to truths he had never heard before. He asked himself, “Why isn’t anyone teaching this stuff?”  The book had such a profound impact on him that he wanted to find a church that could relate to what he was learning.

Soon, Donald started going to a weekly Bible study. Church attendance came next as his life focused on walking with God.  He was baptized in 2009!

From a secular mindset that didn’t care that much about anything, it was Donald’s reading of The Great Controversy that guided him in a new direction with a new plan to follow. He and his wife are happily married and both of them are currently working fulltime for Three Angels Broadcast Network.  

The Search

Jonathan Zita,  Director
Lifestyle Canada Education Services

Secretly, quietly, Armand scoured the internet, looking for answers to questions he had been asking nearly all his life but was afraid to vocalize in his family.  One day, he stumbled upon a presentation by Doug Batchelor and decided to listen.  He was so impressed by the message that he listened to Batchelor’s other presentations, and then to presentations by other individuals, all of which seemed to confirm his own understanding on matters of faith and the Bible. 

As he listened, Armand began to pray to God for help to better understand the history of the church.  Six months later, a Canada Youth Challenge student knocked on his door.  Armand spoke with the student literature evangelist and examined the books he offered.  He flipped through them until he came to the very last book, The Great Controversy.  Intrigued, Armand turned to the index and looked at the chapter titles.  Immediately, he knew his prayer had been answered – this book contained the information he had been looking for.

Armand read the book over the next year and was blown away.  He became strongly convicted about the truths he learned.  He searched for a like-minded church close to his home, and one weekend he decided to walk in.  That very day, an appreciation ceremony was held for that summer’s student literature evangelists. Excitedly, Armand approached the students and told them he was there because of their work.  No greater demonstration of appreciation for the work of literature evangelists could have been presented than to see, and speak with, a man who had been led to the church and the faith through their ministry.  Armand was baptized and has faithfully attended the church ever since.

Armand’s story is a testimony to the power and potential of the literature evangelism ministry.  Both he and his daughter were led to the faith because someone knocked on his door and gave him The Great Controversy.


Finding the Source

Amir Davis

A young child longing for a better world hears an ancient promise echoed in a modern church pulpit—

“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you.  I go to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.  And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.”  John 14:1-4 (KJVS)

The only thing this child knew not was the way, and thus he really didn’t even know where he was going either.  How could he be drawn to somewhere that he didn’t even know?

The promise of something better came from Someone who he wanted to see, to be with, to know.  The promise came from Jesus.  Who else could make such a promise of a better life— of a better world?

For years I had a deep interest in this promise and saw around me, even as a teenager, evidence that this world could not go on much longer.

Feeling powerless to communicate clearly my belief in the soon coming of Jesus to others, I tried to study and learn more.  In the end, I was left with much perplexity after studying popular teachings on the Second Coming.

I remember, like it was yesterday, kneeling down beside my bed and saying to God, “Please show me the truth about the Second Coming because I do not want to tell people things that are false about Jesus.”  He answered my prayer.

Within a couple of years, I found a book called The Great Controversy in my hands due to a number of miraculous scenarios and meetings.  I read the book within two weeks and came to the conclusion that it was truly in harmony with the Bible.  I have never seen the world the same again.

The source of truth is Jesus and He gave me the gift of understanding which I did not have before.  My life challenges were not removed, but The Revelation of Jesus Christ has continued to support me.

The Great Controversy has a special home in my heart because of my past experience in the context of reading it.  This book is heavily attacked by the powers of darkness because it so clearly points to Jesus and His Word.  In my own experience I have felt the ire of the dragon in connection with this book.  For one example, when sharing this book with people during a summer of Christian literature sales, I one day returned to the church to find my car stolen.  What was unique was that this day was the highest day in distributing The Great Controversy that I had ever had.  And this was the day when my car was stolen with many personal study materials and resources as well.  Thankfully, the message still went out, even though I experienced a loss that day.

This book truly gave me a perspective on the world unlike anything else.  I have never since experienced such a powerful and all-encapsulating vision that has so dramatically shaped my worldview.

Ultimately, by means of The Great Controversy, Jesus, and His Word; the Bible was revealed to me as the Source of Truth, and now in my own experience, His words find a corresponding ring—

“And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.”  John 14:4

Do you have a story?

If you have a conversion story that includes the reading of The Great Controversy, we would love to hear from you. Email us at