There were a couple of skaters on Mill Ave named Shawn and Zach - one of them rolled up near the post office and jumped up onto the window ledge with his board and back down again. He was shirtless and covered in tattoos. We complimented him on his skating abilities and gave him a million dollar bill. We then asked if he thought he was good enough to get into heaven. He stated that everyone was good enough, and we were able to go through the Good Person Test to clarify God's standard. He claimed to be a believer, but seemed to pick and choose what he liked and what felt right to him. We left them with some more in depth tracts to read through later. Seeds planted.
Tom was talking with a young woman on a bike and called me over. The last couple of weeks we had been talking among ourselves about tattoos, and whether or not a born again believer should get one. We all agree that having tats from previously is not an issue, but to get one after becoming a Christian has been an interesting discussion. Most Christians answer that they feel that it is permissible, but they themselves wouldn't want to get one. So, that was what made Arielle interesting. She said that she'd gotten her tattoo after she had become a believer.
Now, I'm not sure that her theology was sound, and I'm not sure that she wasn't a false convert - I wasn't able to talk with her long enough to determine these things. She didn't like the new sign that Marcus had brought out, full of Bible verses, and she seemed to be into the "love alone" gospel, not really understanding God is holy, righteous and just, and that He is not ONLY love to the exclusion of everything else. She wouldn't take any tracts, but we talked with her for a while. She had gotten her tattoos of her own artwork, and felt that if her body is a temple, she is free to decorate it.
I guess I agree for the most part. The only problem with that is, are you glorifying yourself or God? We are to glorify God in everything we do, we're called to be separate from the world, putting God first, rather than ourselves. It is those in the world who prefer to bring attention to themselves, so in the end I remain unsure. I will have to find more people who have gotten tattoos after becoming believers to discuss the subject further.
David (the conspiracy guy) was out there. He has some issues, but is a nice enough guy most of the time. He's always talking about aliens, the CIA and various conspiracies that he thinks he sees. Today he was being a bit obnoxious, claiming that Marcus's sign was offending him. He ranted about that for a while, but then Stan talked with him and calmed him down. He actually made David come over and apologize to each of us for his actions, and he remained pretty calm the rest of the night.
Here are a couple of pics of Marcus's sign. It's a little reflective, so I took pics from two different angles.
We were approached by a couple of guys who gave us a card for a new church that was opening on Mill. Tom asked what they believed and if anyone could come. They said it was a non-denominational Bible believing church and that anyone could come. Another guy who seemed to be more in charge came up. Tom asked if unbelievers with questions would be welcome, and they guy said, "Of course" and that they wanted people to come and ask questions. Then Tom asked him about the Law and if he knew the Ten Commandments or not. To which, the guy stated that they were just trying to be nice and tell us about the new church and that he felt attacked by all of these questions. Excuse me? Did you just read where he told us that they actually wanted people to ask questions, and then he's offended by the questions we're asking?
We pointed that out to him and he apologized. He was able to name 7 or 8 of the Ten Commandments (which is actually pretty good - most people can't get past 4).
I explained to them that we were asking questions in order to determine what their beliefs were in this new church and that you cannot gather that information without asking some in depth questions. There are countless heretical "churches" out there that would claim to be "Bible believing." You have to really dig into their theology in order to discover what they really believe. They seem like they might be a good place, but I'd have to go there and ask more questions to know for sure.
There was another group of evangelists that went by when we first got there. They were young, but knew Scripture pretty well. Tom spoke with one of them for a while, but they were in a hurry to go and preach elsewhere and felt that they were wasting their time speaking with other believers. The thing is, there are so many false converts out there that it's difficult to determine if you're talking to a true believer or not. So, I gave a couple of them my card with this blog on it so they could check out our beliefs when they have more time. I'd really like to talk to them more, they seemed to have a pretty good grasp of the Gospel and evangelism. Maybe we'll see them out there again, and be able to listen to some of their street preaching.
Soli Deo Gloria