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Nailing the Evangelical Fads

Terry Mattingly

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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.

[...]

Read the entire article on the Terry Mattingly website (new window will open). Visit Terry Mattingly's Get Religion blog.

Posted: 01-Mar-2009



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