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Discussion Forum : General Topics :  Evangelism in the public place

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DEADn
Member



Joined: 2011/1/12
Posts: 1387
Lakeland FL

  Evangelism in the public place

Saturday night my wife and I and her mom went to the Strawberry Festival in Plant City. It has been a decade since visiting and since my mother n law is living with us I thought it would be fun for her to see.

As I was looking for a parking spot I passed by a person with a bright yellow shirt with the phrase 'Obey God not Man' on the back. I read it out loud and I thought 'Well that is interesting, good for you!'. A few minutes later, because traffic was SLOW, this same person was seen walking with another person in a black shirt with Jesus slogans all over it. The person in the yellow shirt was holding up a sign while the black shirted person had tracts in his hand.

10 minutes later as we were walking to the gate I happened to pass what may have been another couple doing the same thing. 3 people and one with a sign and their conversation appeared to be one where they introduced themselves to each other because they were witnessing but didn't realize the other one was there. Inside the festival there was also a booth set up where 1 of 3 people were asking people questions about God.


My point on this post is to ask why someone would go street witnessing with a billboard on their shirt about 'Obey man not God' and then hold up signs? I didn't read the signs but yet in a climate where some people have been hurt by religion What goes through these minds to advertise their shirts so much like so? Sometimes I get weirded out by some of these people because they tend to be loud mouths and proclaim things but not always reading to listen.

When I think about it I should have stopped and talked to them for a few minutes. I just didn't want my wife and mother n law to get bored waiting to go into the fair.

What are your thoughts?

John


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John

 2017/3/12 13:20Profile
narrowpath
Member



Joined: 2005/1/9
Posts: 1296
Germany NRW

 Re: Evangelism in the public place

I rather have a handful of hotshots with 99% zeal and 1 % wisdom than 100 people with 10% wisdom and 0% zeal.

When you go out evangelizing you learn a lot. In most cases these evangelists become seasoned in the battle.

 2017/3/12 14:06Profile
dohzman
Member



Joined: 2004/10/13
Posts: 2132


 Re: Evangelism in the public place

Narrowpath got it right. The early days of my own Christian experience, my salvation experience was so dramatic , I was saved from such a horrible life, and the love of Christ for me was so powerful and real, that when I read in the Bible go into the highways and by ways and compel them to come in. I only understood that one way.. Since thoughs early days I understand evangelism differently now , maybe more diverse ways to achieve the same thing would be more accurate.

I did notice that you wrote "Obey God not man" than transposed it the second time "obey man not God" I am guessing that was and error or typo?

Anyway...... The exercise of public evangelism will strengthen and test a persons faith and commitment to Christ like no other and I see it as just plain obedience , a good place to start for some.

The big question comes with method of street preaching, shouting verses one on one witnessing verses handing out a tract verses etc.......The methods vary greatly and honestly God has not appointed me as judge over others I have seen on places like You Tube preaching on college campuses and such. Like the apostle Paul wrote, I rejoice that Christ is preached even if for strife, in his day they were hoping to add to his affliction. No matter what though, we all need to share Jesus in all of life, and to pray one for another that our witness is effective.


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D.Miller

 2017/3/12 15:14Profile
DEADn
Member



Joined: 2011/1/12
Posts: 1387
Lakeland FL

 Re:

The public evangelism is not what I am aiming at in my post. What I am questioning is the overkill of signs on a sign post and on the shirts that become very dogmatic when read. It often seems to bring more adversity then any kind of openness to the Gospel. Often to me to appears like Westboro Baptist church but without what their sings are saying. Does that make sense?

Oh yea, I did get it wrong when I said 'Obey man not God'. It should have been consistently 'Obey God not man'. It is what happens when I don't review what I just wrote out. Egg of my face!

John


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John

 2017/3/12 15:40Profile
dohzman
Member



Joined: 2004/10/13
Posts: 2132


 Re:

I understand your thoughts on signs and tee's , I guess I don't really have a problem with that, the early church used symbols to help other believers identify who they are.... a stretch I know from todays bible verse T-Shirts. I guess I don't have a problem with that type of witness as long as its done in a spirit of love or in a heart that seeks to honor Christ and love the lost.

I do believe you are right about the attitude when you referenced the WBC. They don't appear to bring "Good News". I suppose its all in the heart. I heard a brother tell a group of men that if they did not change their ways they would end up dead and spend all eternity in hell, he than offered them a way of escape in Jesus Christ, those dudes were from the bike gang hells angels and the men spoken to directly was the chapter president and his enforcer.....but they knew they were loved and the message came across to them with the offer of God's free gift through Jesus Christ.


I would be interested to see what others may think about the topic too.


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D.Miller

 2017/3/12 17:48Profile
drifter
Member



Joined: 2005/6/6
Posts: 854
Campbell River, B.C.

 Re:

I remember about a year and a half ago I was visiting New York to attend Times Square Church, and I saw the same thing, some people with signs with similar slogans that you described, and someone handed me a tract. There was a man with a megaphone, and he was shouting something about "it's either back to God or back to the jungle". Something was a little bit off about the whole thing. I put the tract in my pocket and forgot about it. After church, I went back to my hotel. I reached into my pocket and there was the tract. If I remember correctly, it was warning about hell. I threw it away and didn't give it much more thought.
Then about a year later, I talked with pastor David Ham (what a nice guy he is!) for counselling over the phone. He mentioned those people (because it pertained to what we were talking about), and said something interesting. He was driving through Manhattan with his son, and the street preachers were there again, with their signs, handing out tracts and preaching. He asked his son, "Can you tell me what's missing from this?" and his son answered "Yeah dad; there's no love and grace."
His son hit the nail on the head.
Now please don't misunderstand me; I am not condemning these street preachers or any others. But when we reach out to people, they have to know Jesus loves them. That must be the focal point.


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Nigel Holland

 2017/3/12 19:55Profile
sonsigns
Member



Joined: 2005/6/6
Posts: 224
Brumley Missouri

 Re: Evangelism

I thought of Leonard Ravenhill, while I was reading your post. He stated in his revival #1 sermon...

Revival cannot be organized -- evangelism can be organized.
Revival cannot be subsidized -- evangelism can and usually it must be.
Revival cannot be advertised -- evangelism can.

While those witnesses wear shirts advertising Slogans of God and carrying signs advertising salvation while passing out tracks, they are advertising evangelist. Hurrah! The body of Christ needs more of this.

While I prefer one on one meetings, they could have made it even more effective had they preached the Gospel standing on a soap box with a Karaoke microphone and speakers.


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William Cato

 2017/3/12 21:05Profile
dohzman
Member



Joined: 2004/10/13
Posts: 2132


 Re:

we used to do 1 on 1 witnessing and also did a sermon from the street corner , the same way you would preach from a church pulpit, we did that for a few years(tracks too), than quite unexpectedly the Lord started to reach into the lives of many of the people we preached to and they started to come to Christ during the day(normally we ministered at night- fridays and saturdays), some of the prostitutes came into the church, usually alone and weeping asked for help, for awhile there we was sending them pretty regular to different teen challenge centers, had a few pimps some pushers and a few runners receive Christ during that period of time...I could write a book...it was amazing to watch happen.


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D.Miller

 2017/3/12 22:46Profile





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