Gospel Tracts (New Exciting Designs!)

I do love the idea that more words is more better. If we could only cram the entire books of John and Romans onto a 3×5 card that would be most effective of all.

The man behind this ministry varies slightly from the normal fundy mold in that his website proclaims that he’s happy to work across denominations UNLESS you’re a Roman Catholic, a Seventh-Day Adventist, a Oneness Pentecostal, a Mormon, a Jehovah Witness…or a Calvinist. Take that, Calvinists!

88 thoughts on “Gospel Tracts (New Exciting Designs!)”

  1. I think this guy needs a print design class–too many words on the card, and the print is too small. No chance for us middle-aged folks in bifocals to read the Good News!

  2. I got in trouble for using a QR code when I designed a tract once. Someone in the church was pretty sure that QR codes were the mark of the beast.

    Good thing, I was about to have a QR code tattooed on my right hand and forehead.

    1. Got distracted by the video and didn’t finish my thought. The reason for the QR code was the text the MoG wanted to put on the 3X5 tract would have required a 0.1 point font. So I link to the website with the “book” using the QR code.

    2. The Beast might have more success if he/she/it didn’t keep changing the mark. First it was Social Security numbers, then Zip Codes, then bar codes, then ID microchips, then QR codes. Make up your mind, Beast.

      1. If you really want to confuse somebody who thinks barcodes (or whatever) are the mark of the beast, ask them if it is possible to receive the mark by accident, without knowing what it was.

        On the other hand, if you THINK the barcode is the mark of the beast, but use barcodes anyway, then doesn’t that make you damned forever? Mwahahaha!

    3. If you still want to go through with it, there’s more than a few versions you can use:
      666 Biblical Number of the Beast
      660 Approximate Number of the Beast
      DCLXVI Roman Numeral of the Beast
      665 Number of the Beast’s Older Brother
      667 Number of the Beast’s Younger Sister
      664 or 668 Number of the Beast’s Next-Door Neighbors
      999 Number of the Australian Beast
      333 Number of the Semi-Beast (also “Halfway to Hell”)
      66 Number of the Downsized Beast
      6, uh…, I forget Number of the Blond Beast
      666.0000 Number of the High Precision Beast
      665.9997856 Number of the Beast on a Pentium
      0.666 Number of the Millibeast
      X / 666 Beast Common Denominator
      0.00150150… Reciprocal of the Beast
      -666 Opposite of the Beast
      666i Imaginary Number of the Beast
      6.66 x 102 Scientific Notation of the Beast
      25.8069758… Square Root of the Beast
      443556 Square of the Beast
      1010011010 Binary Number of the Beast
      1232 Octal of the Beast
      29A Hexidecimal of the Beast
      2.8235 Log of the Beast
      6.5913 Ln of the Beast
      1.738 x 10289 Anti-Log of the Beast
      00666 Zip Code of the Beast
      666@hell.org E-mail Address of the Beast
      http://www.666.com Website of the Beast
      1-666-666-6666 Phone & FAX Number of the Beast
      1-866-666-6666 Toll Free Number of the Beast
      (which could also be written 18-666-666-666!)
      1-900-666-6666 Live Beasts, available now! One-on-one pacts!
      Only $6.66 per minute! (Must be over 6+6+6 years old!)
      666-66-6666 Social Security Number of the Beast
      Form 10666 Special IRS Tax Forms for the Beast
      66.6% Tax Rate of the Beast
      6.66% 6-Year CD Interest Rate at First Beast Bank of Hell
      ($666 minimum deposit, $666 early withdrawal fee)
      $666/hr Billing Rate of the Beast’s Lawyer
      $665.95 Retail Price of the Beast
      $710.36 Price of the Beast plus 6.66% Sales Tax
      $769.95 Price of the Beast with accessories and replacement soul
      $656.66 Wal-Mart Price of the Beast (next week $646.66!)
      $55.50 Monthly Payments for Beast, in 12 easy installments
      Phillips 666 Gasoline Used by the Beast (regular $6.66/gal)
      Route 666 Highway of the Beast (where he gets his kicks!)
      666 mph Speed Limit on the Beast’s Highway
      6-6-6 Fertilizer of the Beast
      666 lb cap Weight Limit of the Beast
      666 Minutes Weekly News Show about the Beast (airs daily from
      Midnight to 11:06 a.m., on Cable Channel 666, of course)
      666o F Oven Temperature for Cooking “Roast Beast”
      666k Retirement Plan of the Beast
      666 mg Recommended Minimum Daily Requirement of Beast
      Lotus 6-6-6 Spreadsheet of the Beast
      Word 6.66 Word Processor of the Beast
      Windows 666 Bill Gates’ Personal Beast Operating System
      #666666 Font Color of the Beast (the gray in this table, no kidding!)
      i66686 CPU of the Beast
      666-I BMW of the Beast
      IAM 666 License Plate Number of the Beast
      Formula 666 All Purpose Cleaner of the Beast
      WD-666 Spray Lubricant of the Beast
      DSM-666 (rev) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the Beast
      66.6 MHz FM Radio Station of the Beast
      666 KHz AM Radio Station of the Beast
      66 for 6 A Beastly Score for an Innings (in cricket)
      6 for 66 Bowling Figures of the Beast
      6/6/6 Birthday of the Beast (but in which century?)

  3. The Gospel presentation reduced to the size of fine print on a contract for a bank document. Who reads the fine print? With my aging eyes, I don’t do fine print very well, even with better glasses.

    Tract distribution is based on the faulty idea that salvation is a matter of information and mental assent — no personal contact needed. While I believe that it is the Word of God that does the work in the heart, I believe that the heart needs to be prepared to receive it. Cultivation is important, and that requires personal contact, living a caring and helpful life, time and love. It is not a production process.

    Tracts are relatively cheap. They are easily ignored. They get thrown out — and these with their fine print will get tossed nearly all the time. They are promoted as “spreading the gospel” and “witnessing,” but they often do more harm than good. I have friends who “tip” at restaurants with tracts and skimp on the money. My wife and I usually give 20% or more and hand it to the waitress personally with a thank you. Many a server groans when seeing a tract left on a table they worked hard to serve.

    So I never use them. It didn’t take too many viewings of tracts left on urinal stalls for me to decide they weren’t effective.

    1. I cringe at tracts nowadays. Far cry from the days that I made a persuasive speech that not ALWAYS giving EVERYONE you meet a tract was the equivalent of saying, “I don’t care if you go to hell.” Cringe, cringe, cringe.

      People seem to think tracts are somehow magical…they just give the server more junk to clear from the table. Far better to go back to that restaurant and develop a relationship with the server and always be a non-jerky, thoughtful client.

      Yes, people tend to think people just need exposure to the gospel….like the salvation invitation where the preacher said, “I’m sorry….if you don’t do this you’re stupid.” Ugh. The older I get, the more Calvinistic I become….we are so messed up that we need God to reach down and pluck us up in his mercy.

    2. We are always careful to tip at least 20%; often more, but we also leave a card or tract or something from our church.

      Back in the dark ages when I went to college, the church I was in had a call from a woman who was a waitress — she had been saved as a result of a tract left in the restaurant. She started coming to our church. She & her husband had separated, but then he was saved, and they re-married each other. When I left that area a few years later, they were still married and active in church. All started because of a tract left in a restaurant. I expect that most tracts are ignored or tossed out, but I knew this couple personally, so for at least once, it made a difference.

      1. That is a great story. Yes 99% of tracts are ignored and thrown away, but that 1% matters.

        My pastor also came to God in large part due to a tract that somebody gave him. He tossed it on a shelf where it collected dust for months until he was in a position where he came to read it. That started him down the path to trusting in God.

        1. I don’t know if they were separate or divorced… if they weren’t actually divorced, they were on their way to a divorce. I think that they were divorced, because they went through some kind of remarriage.

          (remember that this was a very long time ago, and so some of the details I just don’t remember).

      2. Good point!
        I still leave tracts. Ya’ never know who they can reach.
        I know of a man that had been given a tract and he just put it in his glove box. Later on the man was at a low point in his life…so low he was going to kill himself. He was in his car and reached for the gun, but found the tract lying there instead…He actually took the time to read the tract instead of using the gun to end his life. He was saved instead of killing himself. He became a great preacher later.
        Pretty cool.
        So, yeah, they can work. I still hand them out, only if I feel the Spirit leading me… I don’t cram them into people’s faces like I once thought you had to. ha!

        1. Who was that preacher?

          Where did you hear of him?

          Color me skeptical, but I suspect pastors go around spreading Fundy urban legends because it supports what they want you to do.

        2. *Used to be Fundy…
          He’s for real. I know his widow…She’s my mom’s very good friend still. It really happened.

          Believe me, I’m a skeptic too… He was a family friend. : )

      3. Finally, a comment in defense of gospel tracts. I have met Christians over the years who first learned the gospel from a little slip of paper/cardstock. Also it is encouraging that you tip 20%. I remember eating out for Sunday lunch with groups of fundy gluttons (ooo, one of the seven deadlies?) who did not tip, or even worse, left a paltry sum, and grumbled if the gratuity was automatically added to the check and “well, we’re not eating here again”. I once read a blog comment by a waitress who said the most humiliating experience she had was with a party of thirty or so churchgoers who ran her to death and then she was given a dollar with a gospel tract by the patriarch of the group grinning like he was giving her the moon. Other bloggers on the site agreed that Sunday lunch was the most dreaded hour of the week for those who rely on tips for the better part of their wages. The moral of the story, if you leave a gospel tract at a restaurant, be sure and tip generously. People aren’t stupid.

      1. Yeah, they may get more response if they used tracts from The Tract League… It’s where I order mine. At least you can read the print on them. : )

        I’m not a fan of using any type of “money” or “bills” to get people’s attention. It makes people mad..
        It’s always best to establish a relationship with a lost person…Get to know them…what they believe…where they come from… Show them you care. Let them know you’ll be around to help them with questions or growth problems they will face in their future as a new Christian. It’s very important. It’s how Jesus taught… “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded…”

  4. It makes sense to lump Calvinists with Mormons. Bear with me here, because I am not being facetious. Listen to the “gospel” presentation, including the “are you a real Christian” section. This religion believes that salvation is dependent upon accepting/confessing the proper ideas. Now, let’s leave aside the issue of whether confession produces faith or is produced by faith (this video rather clearly entails the former, but that is beside the point) and just accept that Christians correlate confession with faith and acceptance in the church (not strictly true, but we’ll take it as a given). Here’s the deal: historically, the church has agreed that holding to the ecumenical creeds was all the confession needed to be a Christian (again, totally unrelated, but this is one reason I disagree with my denomination’s closed communion policy). But fundamentalism has replaced the creeds with their own set of (greatly expanded) doctrines. They have essentially made all theology binary. Not very sophisticated, but there you go. Calvinists, despite confessing the creeds and comprising a significant portion of Protestant history, don’t hold to some IFB teachings; ergo, they are “out” in the same way as Mormons. So while I think the whole thing is completely ludicrous, it actually does make sense. In a weird, cultish sort of way.

  5. It’s weird that one of his fake money tracts features John F. Kennedy, the only Catholic U.S. President (so far), given his conviction that Catholics are among those beyond the pale.

  6. No doubt he’ll be hearing from the Discover Card people, if he hasn’t already. Credit card companies are not happy when people give out fake credit cards.

      1. Hey, “wokeup”: yesterday you wrote that you used to be part of a Indy fundy group that you left in the 90’s. What Indy fundy group/church were you a part of?

  7. He seems nice. I’m not going to buy a tract, or look at his website, but he seems nice. But then again, I don’t have a good history of being a good judge of character.

      1. I love when Sedaris does pieces on This American Life. I have to admit I don’t really read his written work, but I love that quote and can totally just hear him saying it.

    1. Kerrigan Skelly seems nice here, but he is a full-on semi-pelagian, doesn’t believe original sin exists, believes that works and faith are necessary to save one instead of faith alone in Jesus Christ alone and believes one can and needs to be perfect and sinless in order to stay saved and go to heaven.

      As Robert points out, he loves to argue with and scream at people, whether they be nonbelievers or believers, loves to confrontational and abrasive and will use some choice words to make people who agree with him become angry at him so he can claim to be persecuted.
      I saw some of his vids and his followers, also even a follower here in the Netherlands.

      These guys are nuts, they even hate-preach against other churches they deem to be sinful and with wrong doctrines and even against mosques as well.
      Best to view a few vids, understand their wackiness and stay away.

  8. This seems a bit more like the fundygelical I grew up as. The fact he accepts the NKJV and has links to Evangelical ministries like Ravi Zacharias puts him at odds with 99.99 percent of fundies.

    1. He seems great to me!!!
      More Fundies need to accept beards, NKJV and take a walk on the Evangelical side… They may learn something….
      I hope the best for this guy… At least he’s doing SOMETHING.

  9. Kerrigan Skelly… Yeah, not too many Calvinists are going to be offended that he won’t associate with us. The man is a nut. His open air “preaching” usually consists of putting people down and trying to make them angry. He also believes he has achieved sinless perfection.

    It was entertaining to watch his video “Breaking the Golden Chain of Redemption” and then watching the Dividing Line and James White demolishing his arguments.

  10. He may only list some specific denominations/sects/beliefs, but I don’t think anyone thinks this guy would work with a gay person who agreed with his theology, right?

  11. This guy is definitely a different stripe of “fundy” then usual.
    I was surprised to see “We don’t believe babies are ‘born sinners’ or born with a sinful nature” as part of his beliefs. That’s pretty contrary to most fundies. Also he supports the NKJV (so he isn’t KJVO). And his “We believe that Christians don’t have to sin….This is commonly called Christian Perfection, Biblical Perfection or Sinless Perfection.”

    1. This particular stream of fundy comes out of the Keswick movement. Most of them are pentecostal, not IFB, so IFBers wouldn’t generally have the exposure, but there are a whole mess of them, and they are pretty strict fundy (have a friend who is one – ladies don’t cut their hair and wear skirts, etc).

    2. I have been having some difficulty with “original sin” over the past couple of years. Not that I have discarded it, but I am seeing the holes it creates.

      It is ultimately a way for people to excuse themselves and blame someone else. “Adam and Eve (especially Eve!) made me do it!” It also allows God an excuse to judge the innocent for the sins of others. Sure, hang Saul’s sons for the sins of Saul! Yes, exterminate the Amalekites for what their ancestors had done. God commands it!

      It excludes pity. It excuses atrocities. It condemns to hell innocent babies and children and those who cannot know better. Unless you twist the Scriptures and pick and choose to make exceptions!

      Ezekiel took exception to this sort of thinking later on. The son shall not bear the sin of the father, nor the father for the son. Each shall bear their own sin, and their own punishment.

      And in fact, there are other indications in Scripture contrary to original sin. For as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, so death came upon all men for that all have sinned. Adam opened his door to sin. I opened my door to sin. Paul noted, “I was alive without the law once, but when the commandment came, sin came alive and I died.”

      So, like a lot of other things from my fundamentalist past, I have questions about this one, even though this one has been adopted by orthodox Christianity. At least it isn’t affirmed in the Nicene Creed!

  12. He wouldn’t need to work with calvinists……because God is going to take all those lucky folks to heaven, whether they want to go or not, because they are so special! Right?

    I highly recommend that you choose not to be a calvinist, of course if calvinism is true you have no choice, or do you? Very confusing!

  13. I love the “etc.” in that list of denominations he won’t work with. Probably includes me as an Episcopalian. Of course I wouldn’t buy his tracts anyway.

  14. The Amero? THE AMERO?

    Good grief! Gave up listening right there. As they used to say in a well-loved radio programme of my youth here in the UK

    “This boy’s a fool.”

  15. About time someone put them Calvinists in with the heathen where they belong. But I am going to call “Shenanigans” on his opposition to Calvinists, I think it is entirely financially related. He figures if Calvinists were in charge there would be no soulwinning, therefore no need for tracts, and he would have to get a real job.

  16. Nothing says “good gospel presentation” like pitching a conspiracy theory about the “North American Currency Union” while you’re at it. Conspiracy theories have a lot to do with my own moves away from fundamentalism and evangelicalism.

    Oh, and someone might as well note that when the guy says “fun” in the video, he has set a very, very low standard for what fun is.

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