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Monday, September 29, 2008

Fear, not Love

A Constant Flow of Bullshit


Monday, September 29, 2008
For Christians Only

Few within the Church would deny that we are seeing Bible prophecy being fulfilled before our very eyes. These are certainly "perilous" times. Mean’s hearts are failing them for fear of what’s coming on the earth. There are suicide bombings, terrorism, nation is rising against nation and kingdom against kingdom. The neighbors of Israel are boldly escalating their hatred of the Jews. Lawlessness and the love of sin abound on every side. Economies are collapsing, and as I watch political leaders try and keep a brave face, I can see fear deep in the eyes. I think of how they fail to even acknowledge the God that gave them life, and I think of the psalmist’s prayer "Arise, O Lord; let not man prevail: let the heathen be judged in your sight. Put them in fear, O Lord: that the nations may know themselves to be but men" (Psalm 9:19, 20).

In the midst of speaking about the dark and frightening signs of the end of the age, Jesus shone a beacon of wonderful light:

"And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness to all nations; and then shall the end come" (Matthew 24:14).

You and I can be a part of fulfillment pf Bible prophecy. God has entrusted us (as the Church) to be lighthouse keeper, especially at the end of this age. We are to steer perishing sinners into the God-given safe-haven. So make sure you show your brilliance by embracing the work that God has called us to do. If ever you were needed, it’s now.

Maybe it’s not practical for you to open air preach. Maybe you’re a stay at home mom and the daily responsibilities you have, stop you from laboring for God. Or maybe as a husband or father, and your time is consumed in just making sure that your family has food on the table. Then cut your cloth to fit. Do what you can. Carry gospel tracts, and look for opportunities to speak up boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel. How do you do that? I have a way that will make it easier for you.

I have experimented for years on how to make a smooth transition with the lost. By the grace of God, I have learned to bring up the subject of the gospel in a way that helps to dissipate my fears. It means that I can bring up the things of God, without bringing up the things that can potentially cause contention--words such as Hell, Judgment Day, sin, righteousness, the Bible, God, Jesus, and the cross.

Let’s be honest about witnessing. Most of us would prefer a root canal. Our fears fuel an over ripe imagination. When we look at a potential “victim,” we think that the moment the things of God are mentioned they will become a violent monster. So here is a fear dissipating plan: You are going to ask the person what they think happens when someone dies. Get this thought permanently fixed into your mind--there’s nothing offensive about that question. Nothing. Think of how you would have responded to that question, before you came to faith. Would it have made you angry? Of course not. It’s not loaded, so it has no potential to cause an explosion of any sort. You are simply asking for someone’s opinion, and most will readily give it by answering something like, "I’m not sure," or "Everyone goes to heaven." The pleasant tone of their answer will immediately get rid of the fear that has been whispering to you. All you need to be ready with are questions such as, "Do you think about it much?" You will often hear replies like, "All the time." Then be ready with "Are you afraid of dying?" and "Do you think you will go to Heaven?"

So, what do you say? Are you willing to completely surrender yourself to the most worthy cause on earth? Will you enlist without reservation to fight the good fight of faith? Ours is the most noble of battles. We are fighting for the eternal salvation of every human being’s most precious possession.

Posted by Ray Comfort on 9/29/2008 09:13:00 AM 0 comments



They can talk about love all they want; God loves you; Jesus loves you. But it's fear. The natural fear of death that most of us have, and if we've convinced ourselves that there is an "afterlife", the fear of being punished after we die. Whether they admit it or not, most of them would not be "Christians" if it weren't for fear. Their lives are basically built on fear. Am I really saved? Am I going to go to Hell? If I read the word "Fuck" or see some nice boobs or laugh at a picture of a man with a fake dick in his hand, will God punish me? Even the good stuff they do, giving to charities or what have you, is based on fear, on pleasing "god" and not pissing him off. It's not because someone is a fellow human being. Or even out of guilt. Fear. They use this fear to "convert" people into living their lives even more fearfully. And of course, they also use that fear to keep the "love offerings" flowing, to keep those sales of books and DVDs and tracts up. And I love that last paragraph. Wow! I bet Ray has a trunk full of Christian Medals of Honor. They say pride is a sin; Those words are marinated with pride. But it's Christian pride, so it must be okay.

34 comments:

  1. Ray's advice to people about how to witness is horrible. If someone started asking me all those questions about death, I would assume they were in need of a therapist and direct them to one. It would not make me think about their deity.

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  2. Spot on, Rufus.

    It's completely perverted the way people like Ray genuflect before the great god FEAR.

    It's sado-masochism; nothing more, nothing less.

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  3. I'd like for Ray or someone, to ask me those questions. What happens when you die? Nothing. I have some fear about how I'll die; some about when. But I don't fear being dead. And I'm not going to let what fear I do have control me or how I live. Sorry, Ray. Next contestant, please.

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  4. Christian pride: not as sinful as regular pride, but just as obnoxious!

    Also I completely agree that it's all about fear, I actually can't understand how anyone could live like that and keep their sanity...

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  5. I used to get hung up on death and eternity of non-existance until I read a quote (Mark Twaine?) pointing out that before you were born you spent eternity not existing, and that doesn't bug you. After you die it's the same deal.

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  6. >gag<

    Looking back, I'm almost ashamed to say I all too innocently took Ray's WOTM Basic Evangelism course when it was offered at my church (I was like...14, but I still ought to have known better). Thankfully, I didn't complete the entire "certification" as I ended up missing one lesson.

    ...I still have all the matterials sitting around somewhere too. The Evidence Bible, half a gazillion tracts, the "School of Biblical Evangelsim" textbook, and probably some DVDs as well...

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  7. revenant,

    Well the idea is to know where you are going in the afterlife so that you don't fear it. Heaven is a happy place to relieve of the fear of death. So for true believers the don't fear. But they think everyone else does, it is a bit of imposing their beliefs on others. They are told to fear death, from preachers like Ray, if they don't have Christ. Christ makes it all better.

    So it is a weird tear down and bring back up. It is because of the tear down, they think everyone lives in fear of death. In truth, I would think most people don't think about death. I have no evidence for that but just going off of what I personally think about in a day and it isn't death, unless you count death in a video game.

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  8. If somebody comes asking me, what I think will happen, when I die, I'll be ready to give him some details about decomposing corpses.
    It's interesting, actually, and involves a lot of flies, beetles, funghi, bacteria and other cool stuff. Most people stop listening somewhere in the middle of my explanations. No idea, why...
    My belief in immaterial souls is nearly as strong as my belief in sky fairies.
    The soul is something our brain makes up and therefor ceases to exist, when we are dead. What does that say about a deity belonging to the same realm?

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  9. Whether they admit it or not, most of them would not be "Christians" if it weren't for fear.

    I'll offer that there's a distinction between the Ray Comfort Brand of Christianity and other brands. As critical as I am of our favorite fundie, don't make the mistake of thinking he represents a significant portion of any demongraphic.

    He's one wing-nut in a box of tools.

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  10. Whateverman:

    Is "demongraphic" a typo or a pun?

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  11. I've noticed that a lot of Christians try to excuse their behavior by injecting the word "love" into their message.

    Examples:
    "Hate the sin, love the sinner." - Translation: We hate what you do.

    "Jesus loves you and doesn't want you to burn in hell." - Translation: You're spending all of eternity burning in hell unless you believe what I believe.

    Christians seem to be masters of changing the connotations to make themselves look pious without changing the denotations of their message.

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  12. Ornitheologist said...

    Looking back, I'm almost ashamed to say I all too innocently took Ray's WOTM Basic Evangelism course


    I took the basic course too. I invited a couple of friends over and we did the study..and that was the end of it. I asked my pastor about introducing it to the church but he said no. He didn't know too much about it, other than what he saw on tv, but he wasn't interested in doing it.

    I also have the Evidence Bible, but honestly don't see the draw to it. I have a great study Bible and Commentary that are much better.

    Also, I don't agree with Ray 100% about false conversion. I believe you can talk the talk but if you don't live it then there never was a conversion, meaning it isn't false. It just didn't happen at all. Nothing false about it.

    But that's just my opinion.

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  13. whoa - completely unintentional...

    Russelian slip?

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  14. Rocky

    I guess you wouldn't fear death if you're promised eternal bliss. The problem I had though was that when I was a christian, I thought about death frequently. I never thought I was living up to the standards and thought I was going to hell for sure (well the mormon idea of hell).

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  15. My grandmother died, because she was extremely afraid of hell.
    Well, it wasn't the only reason, but this Christian fear clearly made her crazy.
    Atheists are so much better of.

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  16. Could someone please point me to the passages of the bible that proclaim that witnessing is god's work. You'd have to be witnessing to non-believers correct? Doesn't the bible state the following?

    Don’t associate with non-Christians. Don’t receive them into your house or even exchange greeting with them. 2 John 1:10

    Shun those who disagree with your religious views. Romans 16:17


    Ray's acolytes are sinning every time they post a directed response to an atheist. Also, this means Ray's blog is willfully sinful. Unless of course the bible has something ambiguous to say about witnessing. That would be shocking!

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  17. freed said...I believe you can talk the talk but if you don't live it then there never was a conversion, meaning it isn't false. It just didn't happen at all. Nothing false about it.

    I dunno freed. I pretty much lived it for nigh on 10 years as a born again Baptist. I believed it 100%
    During prayer times and bible study I cried tears of joy over what god had done in me.

    From a Christian perspective I guess was the seed that grew up amongst the thorns. from my understanding of the parable it's real seed and it really does take and sprout.

    From my perspective now of course I no longer think in terms of "once saved always saved" or any other flavour because I no longer believe there is any god to do the saving in the first place :)

    I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now.
    (points to anyone who gets the reference)

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  18. I was a christian for the better part of 26 years, I was raised christian. I am 32 now and I don't count being a Christian until I was 5 and even then it is forced. I just recently fully questioned everything, I had at times growing up questioned things but not to the extant that I would consider calling myself even agnostic. I guess I didn't have the doubts of going to hell during that time. When I did start to worry about hell was when I really started to question things. That is where it seems to go back to the tearing you down to make you afraid. It was a kind of last minute gut fear thing for me, but the more I looked at evidence the more it went away. That is my story and if you couldnt tell I just recently went through all of this.

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  19. Liz,

    It is called the "Great Commision" and is found at the end of Matthew.

    And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen. (Matthew 28:18-20)

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  20. @ liz,

    My commentary explains 2 John 1:10 as meaning a warning concerning seducers and the treatment of such.

    They are not to be entertained as the ministers of Christ. Such as, in that day they were generous and hospitable entertainers of travelling ministers and Christians. These deceivers might possibly expect the same reception with the true ministers or with the best who came there.

    Do not receive or welcome them into your family is what John was telling them. He was warning them about the false teachers/preachers,
    not atheists such as yourself.

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  21. @stew,

    I don't suppose your experience could be counted as back-slidden.
    Don't really know.

    I was a back slidder for awhile..or rather off and on for many, many years, but in my case I never changed my mind about my belief in God. I just didn't focus on anything but myself.

    I was saved when I was 10. Even though that was a long time ago, I remember it as yesterday and it was never based on fear. It truly was based on a love I could barely fathom...being only 10. And then again at 23. And then again and again. Its just really, really easy to get so tired of organized religion.

    Especially for an introvert!!!

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  22. When I was told in my early teens that god wanted me to be a stay-at-home wife/mom, I became extremely dissillusioned with the mormon church and began to question my faith. It wasn't until a few years later when I started to really think about myself, my beliefs, and the world around me that I became an atheist. This was a fairly recent developement for me as well!!

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  23. Wow! Don't tell Ray you were a Mormon. You definitely were a false convert.

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  24. Freed,

    So do you believe 'once saved, always saved'?

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  25. Rufus
    I wasn't planning on telling Ray anything...Oh shit doesn't he read this!! Oops!!

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  26. I can't speak for all Christians but I'm not scared of the afterlife (I don't really spend time thinking about it much).
    I try to serve god because it is my duty to him as my creator and I try to reach out to other people because they should come to know him as their patron too and accept his offer of salvation .

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  27. @ nonmagic,

    I do believe once saved - always saved, because that's what the Bible says. If I didn't, then I would spend the rest of my life worrying about my condition, and that of my family because we do act so "human" so often.

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  28. Rocky & Freed,

    Thanks for the explanation. I was raised Catholic. I don't think we were required to do that. Maybe we were, hell if I know. I went to Catholic school for 9 years and after the second grade I pretty much tuned everything out.

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  29. @ liz,

    I forgot to comment on your other scripture ref:

    Romans 16:17 is also directed at the church warning them against false teachers/preachers

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  30. Stew, it's a Bob Dylan song but I don't remember which one. (Too old!)

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  31. When I get the question about what will happen to me after death, if the setting is right, I like to ask back, "do you believe in reincarnation?" Of course the answer is no. I then say, "I didn't believe in reincarnation in my last life either."

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  32. To Ray Comfort,
    Keep those minions scared shitless as much as you can. And don't forget to demonize everybody you can. Hey, aren't those the two main signs of a cult?

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  33. stew,

    I'm thinking Byrds. I can hear it but can't quite pin it down.

    I was a skeptical christian until I did some investigating. I couldn't find anything.

    It seems to me most christians don't fear hell so much but like the idea of their loved ones in paradise and a happy reunion after death. I think in the back of their minds they know it's wishful thinking but most of us are conditioned to believe from birth.

    There's a subset of believers susceptible to the more far fetched notions of a literal satan, demons, hell and the immenant end of the world. I would agree it's fear based and people guided by fear, even subconciously, scare me.

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