Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Saturday 03-24-12

There was a guy in a cowboy hat and too short of tie singing on Mill Ave where we usually set up. So, we set up our stuff nearby and Tom did some Open Air (OA), giving away glow sticks to people who would take the Good Person Test (GPT).

The cowboy decided to start heckling us with his mic, which helped to draw a crowd. People always like to stop by and see what's going on if they hear someone who sounds argumentative. Tom ignored him and continued to talk with others as they stopped by.

A woman named Sara stopped by and said she would consider herself to be a good person. I took her through the test, she seemed to have heard it before, but she was paying attention and even seemed to be somewhat convicted. I gave her an "Are You Good Enough to Get Into Heaven?" tract and a glow stick to take with her.

A guy named Nick stopped by and talked with us for a little while. He seemed to be a believer and was familiar with the Way Of The Master (WOTM), but didn't do any evangelism himself. He said he had friends who did. He asked about a Bible passage concerning eating fruits and vegetables, which made me wonder if he thought eating meat was wrong. He didn't commit to a side on that subject, though, so I'm still not sure. He said that he lives out on the Air Force base, but hangs out in Tempe a lot.

We didn't stay out too late, since we had a few new people with us, and I had a class to teach the next morning. We stopped at Denny's after we left Mill. A guy was sitting near us who was celebrating his birthday. He started talking with us a bit, he said he saw us praying before we ate and that he was a believer. However, in speaking with him further, it seemed that he was more of the false convert, the "carnal Christian" that thinks that they can just live any way they want to because of the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. They seem to miss something out of Hebrews 10:26-27, which makes it very clear that we cannot continue to deliberately sin and think that we are saved.

A biker guy and his girlfriend were sitting nearby and had been talking with this guy earlier. He decided to get into the conversation with his two cents, also believing there is no consequences for whatever we do in this life. I guess he's hoping for a death bed confession or something, but we're not guaranteed any chance like that. Many people die suddenly without any such opportunity. And besides that, there comes a time when God simply will not put up with rebellion any more and we are not even able to repent (Heb 12:17). Esau sought for it with tears, but did not find it.

Then he told me that if he wanted to hear me preach, he'd come to church on Sunday. So I invited him, but he wasn't interested.

As we were leaving, I stuck out my hand to him, and he reluctantly shook it but would not raise his eyes from looking at his receipt (I think he would have rathered to have taken me outside and beaten me). I told him that I hoped he would find a church to go to on Sundays, and he ignored me.

As I thought about his statement on the way home, that he would go to church on Sunday if he wanted to hear preaching, I should have explained that Jesus said He did not come for the righteous but for the sinners (Luke 5:32), and He sends us out to reach them as well. Maybe next time.

This guy should have been more tolerant. I had listened to him curse, blaspheme, and be obnoxiously loud, without ever saying a word. But then he decides to butt into my conversation and tell me he doesn't want to listen to "preaching"? Please pray that the Lord would work in both of these men, convicting them of their sin, convincing them of their need, and drawing them to Himself for their salvation, so that they will not one day hear those fateful words of Jesus Christ when they stand before Him at the end of time: "Away from Me you workers of iniquity. I never knew you." (Matt 7:23)

If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. - Hebrews 10:26-27

Soli Deo Gloria

Monday, March 12, 2012

New 10 Commandments?

Churches Adopt New Ten Commandments

Wow, the “New Ten Commandments” is being accepted by over 600 churches in the UK under a DVD title called “Just 10 for Churches”. Some of them were listed in the news story, but I had to search for the rest of them, and try to figure out where they fit. I think I’ve got it matched up here:

1. You shall have no other gods before Me………………“know God”
2 You shall not make for yourself a graven image…... “catch your breath”
3. You shall not use the Lord’s name in vain……………..“take God seriously”
4. Remember the Sabbath……………………………………..…“live by priorities”
5. Honor your father and mother………………………..…..“keep the peace with your parents”
6. You shall not murder………………………………….……..….“manage your anger”
7. You shall not commit adultery……………………....….….“affair-proof your relationships”
8. You shall not steal………………………………………....……..“prosper with a clear conscience”
9. You shall not bear false witness………………………..….“hold to the truth”
10. You shall not covet………………………………….…………..“find contentment”

I find this completely ridiculous. We don’t need to sugarcoat the Law, even my 9 year old knows the Ten Commandments – do you?

“Know God” – What does that mean? Can I know God and still have a wooden idol on a shelf, a little good luck charm of some sort?
“Catch your breath” – What? That doesn’t even make any sense for any of the Commandments, it only falls in here after the others seemed to be in place. I have no idea what this is supposed to mean.
“Take God seriously” – Ok. I can still curse with His name though, right? Because He knows my heart and it’s no big deal really. Right?
“Live by priorities” – Whatever. We already live by priorities, and most often, God isn’t anywhere near the top of that list.
“Keep the peace with your parents” – Well, a good way to keep from upsetting your parents is simply not let them know what’s going on in your life. They might not approve, besides, we got nothing to lose, right?
“Manage your anger” – Are you kidding me? The sixth commandment seems to have devolved into some sort of anger management class?
“Affair-proof your marriage” – Did you realize that the original 7th Commandment includes fornication as well as adultery? In fact, Jesus said that if you merely look with lust, you’ve already committed adultery in your heart.
“Prosper with a clear conscience” – Sounds kinda Vulcan to me. Spock meets Joel Osteen?
“Hold to the truth” – Kinda weak and sugary.
“Find contentment” – Just don’t find it in other people’s stuff.

Here’s what it says in the New Testament about the Ten Commandments:

1. You shall have no other gods before me (Matt 4:10, Acts 14:15, Rev 21:8).

2. You shall not make for yourself an idol (1 John 5:21, Luke 16:13, 1 Cor 6:9-10, Rev 21:8).

3. You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God (Matt 5:34-35, James 5:12, Matt 12:36).

4. "Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy (Mark 2:27-28, Col 2:16).

5. Honor your father and your mother (Eph 6:1, Matt 19:18-19).

6. You shall not murder (Matt 5:21-22, 1 John 3:15, Rom 13:9, Matt 19:18-19, Rev 21:8).

7. You shall not commit adultery (Matt 5:28, 1 Cor 6:9-10, Rev 21:8, Matt 19:18-19, Rom 13:9).

8. You shall not steal (Eph 4:28, 1 Cor 6:9-10, Rom 13:9, Matt 19:18-19).

9. You shall not give false testimony (lying) (Col 3:9-10, Rev 21:8, Matt 12:36, 1 Cor 6:9-10, Matt 19:18-19).

10. You shall not covet (Eph 5:3, Luke 12:15, 1 Cor 6:9-10, Rom 13:9).

Saturday 03-10-12

Tom and I brought Linda out to Mill Ave for witnessing. She had been through a previous class, but had not been out to Mill before. We met Alan and Dan out there and set up Tom's sign and the illusion board. We had some good witnessing encounters. Here are a few of them.

Haley and Tyler stopped to check out the illusion board, and I took them through the Good Person Test (GPT). They didn't really seem too convicted, as he was hanging on her and snuggling up to her while we were talking. Still, they took an "Are You Good Enough to get into Heaven?" tract. Seeds planted, may the Lord convict them and draw them to Himself.

A couple named Fred and Jessica stopped by next, and went through the GPT. They had some trouble admitting that they would be destined for hell. Even though Fred had admitted to breaking God's Law, he thought he'd be let into heaven anyway. I explained that in a human court, if you're found guilty of breaking the law, you cannot simply go free because you say that you're sorry. There is a fine to be paid. Of course, God is not a human judge, He is far more just than that. But there is still a fine to be paid, and the wages of sin is death (Rom 6:23).
Fred still thought that God would forgive him and allow him into heaven. So I explained that the fine had to be paid, and that Jesus Christ paid that fine, taking on the punishment that we deserved so that we could be saved. We have to understand and admit that we deserve to go to hell for breaking God's law. I gave them some tracts to look through as they left.

A group of teenagers stopped to look at the illusion board, but didn't really want to interact. I talked to one of them named Bradley, who seemed to have a pretty good idea of how we're all found sinful, but he didn't really understand what is required to get into heaven, citing that you had to be baptized and participate in the Passover celebration or something like that. I explained that it is only through repenting of our sins, turning away from them, and hating those things we once loved as much as God has always hated them, and then trusting in Jesus Christ alone for our salvation, as He is the only one that could pay the fine for us. I gave him and a couple of his friends some tracts, but some of the others wouldn't take them.

A young guy named Namath stopped and talked with me for a little while. He said he'd had a Christian background, but seemed to have some issues with that because he felt persecuted in his school because he is a Native American. I took him through the GPT and he seemed somewhat convicted. He said that he had come out to drink, but after talking with me, he wasn't going to. I couldn't really see any conviction in him, but sometimes you just cannot know what people are thinking. I gave him a tract to take with him and read later.
Please pray for the lost, that they would receive the Word of God in some form - whether talking with believers or reading a good Biblical tract - and that the Lord would convict their heart and draw them to Him, for their salvation and to God's glory alone.

Soli Deo Gloria

Thursday, March 8, 2012


"Tolerance is a virtue for those without convictions." -GK Chesterton

So, let's talk about "tolerance" and try to understand the word, because I think it's been taken out of context quite a bit lately. It would seem that the gay rights activists think it means we all have to agree in order to be tolerant. But these are some of the most intolerant people towards anyone who disagrees with them that I've ever seen.

We cannot even have tolerance unless we disagree. What is there to tolerate if you completely agree with someone else?

I disagree with the homosexual lifestyle, like Kirk Cameron, I find it unnatural and destructive. I will vote against homosexual marriage, I will talk to people about what the Bible says about the subject But I do not hate nor fear homosexuals. I do not beat them up for their beliefs or think they should be jailed or killed. I would say that I am fairly tolerant in my disagreement with it. Why is that so bad? Am I not entitled to my opinion just as everyone else?

I will never agree that it's right because the Bible clearly condemns it. Anyone who claims to be a Christian, yet condones that lifestyle is either deceived or ignorant, and any church leader who teaches that it's ok as a Christian is a false teacher.

If I must be considered "intolerant" because I will stand up for what I believe, and can argue the point from a biblical perspective, then fine. But those who throw around the accusations must acknowledge that they are just as "intolerant" as I am, in order for them to avoid the label of "hypocrite."

Monday, March 5, 2012

Saturday 03-03-12

Tom and I met Alan out on Mill Ave. We brought the illusion board, which always attracts attention, and a couple stopped by to check it out as soon as we had it set up.

Tobias and Crystal liked the illusion, and we took them through some of the "IQ questions" which lightens the mood and gets some laughs at how easily we can be fooled by a few trick questions. Then they agreed to go through the Good Person Test (GPT). She seemed a little strung out on something and wasn't paying much attention, but he listened and took it seriously. We gave them a couple of tracts before they headed on their way. Before I was even done talking with them, Tom was speaking with another couple that had stopped by to look at the board.

Later, there was a group of around ten to fifteen people that were checking out the illusion board, so I got out the mic in order to speak with them all at once, and take them through the GPT. One woman seemed interested at first, but as we started going through the Law and the fact that we all deserve to be punished in hell, she decided to walk away without hearing the rest. A couple of her friends left a few minutes later, but the others stayed and listened, getting a clear view of our need for a Savior.

So many people in America believe that they can get into heaven by being a "good person," and they don't like being shown how they stand up to God's standards. These are the ones that are referred to as "innoculated backsliders", knowing just enough of a watered down message to think that they are safe, believing that God is only love, and will just forgive everyone no matter what they do, because He knows their heart. Well, God is more than just love, He is also holy, righteous and just. He does indeed know your heart, and that thought ought to really scare you, because our hearts are deceitfully wicked. If you don't believe that, seriously comtemplate this:

If we could record your mind, every thought and secret desire that you've had in just the past year, and we could put that up on a large screen and invite everyone you know, family, friends, coworkers and acquintences, to view your thought life, how would you feel? Think about this seriously, wouldn't you run away from there and never go back? Because you know that you've thought things that you would never share with even your closest friend. I know this because I am human, just like you, and none of us measure up to God's standards. Know for a fact that God sees every thought, and He is the Creator and Judge of all mankind. We should be very afraid that a holy and righteous God who gave us a standard to live by, knows our every thought and desire of our hearts, and we have violated His law. Without Jesus Christ to pay the fine that we owe, we would all be rightfully cast into the lake of fire for eternity, for our thoughts and deeds in transgression of His Law. Our only hope is to repent of our sins, turn away, foresaking the evil we once loved, and then trust in Jesus Christ alone for our salvation.

A couple of homeless people stopped by throughout the night. I have a few "Gift For You" tracts, which has a place to insert a bill and includes a good Gospel message within it. These people were very appreciative and started reading it right away.

You can get some of these at Living Waters.

A man named Hubert stopped and asked us for prayer. He was pretty drunk and has a serious drinking problem, which is causing issues with his family. He wants to be reconciled with them, but continues to go home drunk. We prayed for him and Tom talked with him for a while about needing to give up alcohol and get his life clean.

Julian, who goes by "Jersey" stopped by with a couple of friends to check out our illusion board. We took him throught the GPT, and he seemed to be convicted, as it made a lot of sense to him. His friends wandered off, but he stayed and talked with us for a while. He said this was "real" and we gave him some tracts to take with him.

A man named Julio stopped by, and claimed to be a Christian. He said that he didn't believe in "duality", that it's not as simple as right and wrong, good and bad, but more of a gray area. I took him through the GPT anyway, and he said that he appreciated what we were doing out there. However, even as he professed Christianity, he said that he did not believe that Jesus Christ was the only way. He thought that people in other religions might have some sort of "Christ-consiousness" as he called it. I explained that if there was any other way, then Jesus Christ died in vain. I explained that the Bible states that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life, and no one comes to the Father, except through Him. There is no other name under heaven by which we can be saved.

It seems that his problem is that he has relatives who are Buddhists and Muslims and does not want to think that there is no hope for them apart from Jesus Christ. He couldn't take the exclusivity, which is the main thing that makes Christianity so offensive to unbelievers. Sean talked with him for a while, but didn't make much progress, either. I gave him an "Are You Good Enough to Get into Heaven" tract before we left, please pray that he will read it and the Lord will open his eyes to understand the Gospel and be saved, for the glory of God.

Soli Deo Gloria