Evangelical Fads

Ever have someone come up to you and ask you if you've found Jesus, or have you been saved, or (my personal favorite) if you were to die tonight where would you go, heaven or hell? These are some of the questions that are asked by a lot of the programs for evangelism that are out there.

Terry Mattingly talks a bit about some of the Evangelical fads of the past and present. You can read it for yourself here. I encourage you to do so. Here's just the beginning of the post. What I found interesting is that Carter never spoke to the individual again. Not exactly building a relationship now, are we.

The upperclassman sat across the cafeteria table from freshman Joe Carter and, in a matter of minutes, asked The Big Question — a question about eternal life and death.

As any evangelical worth his or her salt knows, that question sounds like this: “Have you accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior?” Super aggressive believers prefer: “Are you saved? If you died tonight, would go to heaven or hell?”

Carter remembers replying: “I’m, yeah, actually I have.”

What happened next was strange. The young man was “visibly disappointed” and “wore a look of minor defeat” because he wouldn’t get to save a soul during this lunch period. He ate quickly and departed and, this is the crucial detail for Carter, they never spoke again.

The evangelist wasn’t looking for a friend or dialogue with a believer. He wanted to carve another notch on his Bible, using techniques learned during a soul-saving workshop. If his blunt approach offended strangers, or even strengthened their “Fundie-alert systems,” that was their problem, not his.

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