Red, White and Boom Evangelism 2013

First of all, allow me to share and celebrate my re-birthday with you. I was reborn July 4, 2006. So, as my daughter reminded me today, I was born again 7 years ago. Praise God for that!

Every year Columbus sports the largest fireworks show in the mid-west. Whether or not that is true, I believe it is a fact that over half a million people descend upon downtown. This year, I was able to use the opportunity to share the gospel. I just want to highlight some of the evening for those of you who are interested!

Firstly, and, as expected, there was a fair share of sinless perfectionists preaching their heresy that Jesus is not enough. I abhor their preaching and feel uncomfortable around them. I am afraid to look and sound like them too much – and also don’t care to be drawn in an argument with them, for fear that I will look as foolish as they.

So Fred & Elaine Triplett and I moved from our original location and ventured over to the area where the parade would be. This offered an opportunity to pass out a lot of tracts as people were just lined up. I probably gave away over 2000 tracts yesterday (just estimating, I didn’t count them)!

During the parade, I met some Muslim fellows. They were very friendly at first, but as I made the distinction between our religions more and more clear to them I could see their disdain for me grow. They actually created a bit of a diversion from preaching as the parade ended as I spoke to them and hundreds of people walked by without a preacher!

After the parade ended and that conversation concluded, I set up a stand and began to read 1 John 1 & 2 in the open air. A man named Walter and his girlfriend, Brittany stood very near to me and listened. He was crying. So before I even preached a word, I stepped down to talk to him. He was very confused about the gospel (from a history in several different American churches). I tried my best to explain it to him but I never felt like he understood. While speaking, 3 sisters came up and prayed for his girlfriend and then we shared sweet fellowship with them for a few minutes and they praised God we were evangelizing. They prayed for us on the sidewalk and I felt very blessed by the entire encounter! I then preached from Psalm 34 for probably 20 more minutes or so.

Then I ran into some of the other preachers we were hoping to meet. Fred and Elaine left and I joined this other group. I was very excited when they asked me to preach and handed me a microphone. I had been shouting to this point and my throat was very dry and I had difficulty projecting my voice. The microphone was just what I needed. I preached for about an hour with some interesting encounters!

One guy in a blue shirt walked by and mumbled something. I called him out on it, telling him it was cowardly to mumble and run and that real men would talk. He came back and asked me for the microphone. {insert laughter} I told him I would not give him my microphone to which he replied, “Who’s the coward now?”

I told him keeping the microphone from him was not cowardly, but rather, wisdom. He argued and told me I should stop preaching because (and he counted on his fingers) 1. I was wasting my time 2. No one cares what I was saying and 3. My preaching was an invasion into their lives. I looked at him and said, “I feel you are invading into my life right now , and you are wasting your time because I don’t care. Now who’s right?”

He didn’t get the irony. Nevertheless, he began to yell to the crowds that I was a coward because I wouldn’t share my microphone with him. I simply proclaimed (way louder than he could) that if he had anything valuable to say, someone would have already bought him a microphone or brought one for him. Then, after about 10 minutes of his heckling, I pointed out the irony that he told me I was wasting my time. After all, I was doing exactly what I intended to do that evening, whereas his entire evening appeared diverted by the preacher guys with the big cross.

Another guy just stared at me for like 5 minutes. Literally stood as close as he could to me without touching me and just stared up at me while I preached. I made eye contact several times and he didn’t budge. After a while I engaged him personally. He was very angry about the gospel, so much so that he changed his name because his mother had “shoved this same talk down his throat his whole life.” I told him I wanted him to be forgiven of his sins.

One interesting part of the encounter was when he told me I was using circular reasoning. I asked him to explain to me why circular reasoning is wrong. He explained ever so eloquently, “because it is circular reasoning.” So I asked him how he could be allowed to use circular reasoning and I could not. He became very frustrated quickly. I told him I was not going to talk to him since he seemed so angry. He cheerfully declared, “Well at least I kept you from preaching for 5 minutes.”

So I continued. I got a lot of “Hail Satans,” and I could see people listening from a hundred feet away. I had a nice size group of people who were with me, which not only provided protection if needed, but they were holding signs up and passing out tracts and engaging people. It was wonderful.

After I stopped preaching, I stayed for about another hour passing out tracts and engaging people. I met a man named Johnny who goes to the church I used to attend (but had to leave), and we had a nice talk.

Probably the saddest moment of the night as it pertains to the human condition was when I met 2 obviously gay men.

They were in their late teens, flamboyantly flaunting their sexuality. They were very annoyed by the preacher. I told them he wasn’t just preaching against gays, as they had assumed. They asked me what I thought of “gays.” I told them that gays, like all humans have a sin problem with God and need forgiveness for sins, but Jesus died and rose again to provide forgiveness. They listened cordially. We chatted a few minutes, but finally I said to them,

“If you knew that God considered homosexuality a sin, would you want forgiveness?”

“Hell no. I want to live my life,” was the reply. Then they walked away.

If sinners be damned, at least let them leap to Hell over our dead bodies. And if they perish, let them perish with our arms wrapped about their knees, imploring them to stay. If Hell must be filled, let it be filled in the teeth of our exertions, and let not one go unwarned and unprayed for.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon

One Response to “Red, White and Boom Evangelism 2013”

  1. Wheels says:

    Great job on the post and thank you for caring enough to warn the lost brother.

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