75 thoughts on “Let’s Do the Numbers”

    1. The whole thing rests on three rather grievous fallacies:
      1. Reciting a formula of words is necessary and sufficient for eternal salvation.
      2. We can know for certain that any person who has recited that formula is saved, and any person who has not is highly unlikely to be saved.
      3. Therefore, a preacher or other person who can persuade, wheedle, pester, cajole, or decieve another person into reciting the formula is due glory for effecting a poor sinner’s eternal salvation.

      I need hardly point out that the first two notions are heresies, and the third is a profound blasphemy.

      Some of the people involved in this “soul-winning” game will deny that they believe the above tenets. But their actions and their boasts are revealing.

      1. How true – if confronted with this truth, they would say “we’re just some folks saved from sin, spreading the gospel, trying encourage those who dedicate their lives to soul-winning by giving them some numbers.” They’re always more holy and folksy than you are

      2. Dear Big Gary:

        I’d like to know what ‘gospel’ was screeched that produced these converts. Was it the declaration that in Jesus’ presence God’s Kingdom is near and that we are to repent and believe that good news — or is it the ‘gospel’ construct that replaces Jesus’ Mark 1:14-15 gospel, which was then projected into the future?

        The difference concerns whether the gospel is we get to accept God into our lives and that IFB pastors/evangelists create a position for themselves as the mediators who show us the way to the mediator, OR whether the gospel is the declaration that in the second person of the Trinity, Jesus Christ, already we have been accepted into the life of God and we are now called to repent and believe that good news.

        Christian Socialist

  1. I guess people get saved now by mere contact with a preacher?

    Simple math says, about 9 people per day per church, or 89 people per day per evangelist.

    And they wonder why non-fundies don’t trust fundies at all…

  2. That’s not much of a world wide push since they supposedly reached 0.00016% of the world wide population.

    That’s more of world wide slight bump while passing in the aisle instead of a push.

    1. Don’t you know that it is the fault of the lazy Christians who have no compassion for the lost, and are not moved by the thought of them spending eternity in hell?

    2. World-wide soulwinning with….38 churches participating. I know God can use small numbers, but it just goes to show just how limited their influence is.

  3. I wonder what the number would be if you limited it to new converts instead of people getting re-saved because of the guilt they felt after listening to the preaching (I use the term loosely).

    1. I remember in the not so to distant past, that Bro. Tom Farrell came to our old church. I overheard one of the ushers say that Tom had at least 50 saved everywhere he went. He had one conversion I remember well. A lady who was saved, baptized, and active in the church suddenly realized she wasn’t REALLY TRULY SAVED and got assurance of salvation and later assurance of her baptism. I think she went down the wrong aisle the first time so they had her come down the middle aisle a little later so a) everybody who had their eyes closed would see her and b) Bro Tom could count her twice.

      GAME TIME: what part of this story is true and what part is false. PrayerTime ™ knee pads for the 1st one to guess right.

  4. The obsession with numbers and inflating numbers seems to me the influence of capitalism on the church. Listen to advertisements and they count how many they have served and how long they have been in business. Donald Trump’s reason that everyone should trust him is because he has lots of money and has built big buildings.
    The standards of the USAmerican Culture on Christianity seems to be what the church wants to judge itself by….I wonder when walk into the next emanation of life how that standard will measure up?

    1. It’s so ironic that we grew up being scolded (and punished) for wanting to wear jeans or go to the movies or listen to music with guitars and drums: “You’re just being WORLDLY!!” was the accusation. Yet judging success by NUMBERS is extremely worldly! That’s how the world judges: God rarely behaved that way in Scripture, often choosing the littlest, the least, the most unpresuming and unexpected. Celebrity-driven and numbers-driven church culture are surely more worldly than my wanting to wear something in style instead of baggy culottes.

      1. I frequently noticed examples of the double standard used for most any subject in the fundiferous church of my youth, but was scolded severely whenever I pointed it out. I think that’s why I basically have scant, if any, respect for authority in general.

  5. I don’t understand the emphasis on numbers; the preachers of old left that up to God.

    In the Scriptures, when men counted numbers, it brought God’s punishment. On Pentecost, the Holy Spirit gave the numbers saved and these people “continued” (unlike today in which “soul-winners” talk people into saying a prayer, and they don’t show any change or interest in spiritual things).

    1. One would think that if the numbers were true, they would feel compelled to always have such a push. Otherwise those not getting saved would be their fault, their responsibility.

      So they push every so often, and are lax the rest of the year. It makes no sense. A person in hell could accuse them of quitting too soon.

      So while the preachers might hang this horror over the heads of the workers from time to time, you know they’d never accept such responsibility. The whole thing must be little more than a charade.

  6. I always hate these bogus “conversion” numbers. It’s so easy to raise your hand, sign a card, or say a prayer. However, if these folks would REALLY read the Parable of Sower, they would know more about soils and responses to the gospel. On top of that, these numbers are never reflected in their church membership. All these souls “saved”, but we are still the proud “remnant” church!
    (I was a missionary for 15 years, and these kinds of numbers were never my experience. People saved and added to the church-yes-, but not in the thousands as these people so often claim).

        1. I like it — find films done by Amblin Entertainment – what is they had been done by Hamblin Entertainment?

          “ET, the Evangelist Talking”

          or how about
          “Back is the Future”

          “The Money Pit” (about cufflinks, cars, and karats)

          “An American Tale” (about the stories he tells)

  7. If we assume for the sake of argument that the numbers these roosters crow out are accurate, then how is it that there are still people alive who are not Fundamentalist Baptists?

    How is it, in fact, that by most counts other than their own, the total membership in Fundamentalist churches is declining, not increasing?

  8. Has anybody gone through his twitter and seen how he twisted #willneverforget into a memory of him preaching? I understand the need for evangelism and all that, but sometimes it’s just in bad taste. (Not to mention a trifle over-the-top self-aggrandizement.)

    1. So after reading your comment I went to his Twitter feed. I don’t use Twitter myself, but imagine that one only chooses a cover photo they actually like. At first I couldn’t figure out why he liked it, then figured out: it shows his monogrammed shirt, cuff links, “expensive” watch, suit, ring, and all the rest.

      He really is quite full of himself, which no one with an ounce of common sense needs me to point out.

    2. He obviously thinks the rest of “will never forget” is “ME!”
      “Will never forget ME!”

      It reminds me of the time Justin Bieber visited the Anne Frank House and wrote in the guest book that if Anne Frank were alive now, “She would be a Belieber.”
      Because of course every story is about ME! Of course!

  9. One of the comments – “Avg. 8.45 souls per day per church/evangelist for 31 days straight. Amazing!”

    So for one person, only 9/20ths of his soul was saved – the rest is going straight to hedoubletoothpicks

  10. 38 churches with 11,000 souls – if I did my math right (which I might not have – haha – math isn’t my favorite thing) – that’s an average of 290 souls per church. There really can’t be that many IFB churches that even have 290 people in membership (I know there are some), much less ones that are reaching 290 souls.

    With the exception of the time I spent in Greenville, SC, most of my life has been spent in churches with less than 150 people.

    1. The average church (of any denomination) in the USA has less than 100 active members.

      Fundamentalist and Evangelical churches are notorius for inflating their numbers– for example, by never purging the lists of people who have stopped attending, died, moved away, oe joined another church.

  11. Okay, let’s break these numbers down, shall we?

    4,000 = teenagers who feared that the prayer they prayed at age four wasn’t enough to keep them out of hell
    2,000 = kids under the age of 8 who went forward for fear their parents would be taken in the rapture and they would be left behind
    3,000 = bus kids, pressured by bus workers, or afraid of hell, or worried that the Kool-Aid (generic) and Hydrox supply would be cut off unless they went along with the agenda
    1,500 = members of families who asked to join by transferring their membership from another denomination which wasn’t recognized as truly Christian (like, you know, Methodist, or something)
    500 = homeless people who wandered in hoping for kindness and maybe some food
    29 = actual converts to fundystan (God have mercy on them)

    1. I would’ve been one of the 4,000 only I wouldn’t go forward and make it public, maybe because I was ashamed or embarrassed or too “proud”; part of me, I hope, deep down really clung to the fact that God’s grace covered me even if I hadn’t prayed “quite right” or meant it the “right” way as a young child.

      Of course, the fact that I wouldn’t make a public display of my inner fears and “re-salvation” made me listen to the accusations of the evangelists that I wasn’t REALLY saved because I was ashamed of Christ and He would be ashamed of me, that I was too proud to humble myself in front of the congregation and pray for repentance. Such mental torture. Eventually I had to steel myself against all the persuasive, guilt-inducing, manipulative words from the pulpit and cling to Scripture like John 6:37: “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.” I came to Him; He said He wouldn’t cast me out. I’d hold on to that like a raft in a storm-tossed ocean, terrified that I was going to hell because I wasn’t “really” saved but unwilling to “get saved” all over again as if my words as a child had meant nothing.

      It hurts even writing about it now.

      1. I came to faith quietly as well, reading through the Bible as a young teen. I remember being grilled a few times, and the discomfort I felt during prolonged invitations. But, I knew my relationship with God was solid when I reviewed everything I had heard/endured. For a church of theology of “once saved, always saved”, I’ve always been amazed that Fundies put so much effort into invitations and less into solid discipleship (which I thankfully found when I went on to college). Solid discipleship might mean less scandal in the ranks.

        1. In a dorm revival meeting at BJU, they sung “Pass me not, Oh gentle Savior.” I’d been rather homesick and lonely, and I started to cry.

          One of the leaders thought I was under conviction and tried to convince me to talk to someone about making sure of my salvation or getting right with God. I knew there wasn’t a problem with salvation or with hiding sin. So I declined.

          In putting in excessive emotionalism into a service the risk of triggering a response unrelated to the issue preached on is pretty great. And I imagine a lot of people are tricked into thinking their emotions related to one thing are actually about salvation-when they really aren’t. Inducing doubt instead of inspiring confidence is a works-salvation tactic.

  12. And many more left the IFB because they finally woke up.

    Tired of the lies and verbal flatulence of the likes of Hamblin.

  13. How about the way it was done in the BIBLE?
    Acts 2:41-42
    “Then they who received his word were baptized and the SAME DAY there were added unto them about three thousand souls AND they continued stedfastly in the apostles doctrine AND fellowship AND in breaking of bread AND in prayer
    What would the count be if they subtracted those who were NOT baptized, were NOT in church the next Sunday, who are NOT following the apostles doctrine, NOT breaking bread with fellow believers and NOT praying? Let’s see those numbers, bub

  14. Typical fundie egoism. Most churches I have been at take pride inthe number of countries they support missionaries in. They love to talk about all the different countries their missionaries are reaching and how they are looking to support missionaries to other countries. Supporting a missionary to Delhi to reach India is like supporting a missionary to Washington dc to reach America.

  15. If a fundy does door to door evangelizing 6 days a week 10 hours a day and has one convert an hour he will have 144,000 in 50 years. Obviously the 144,000 in the end times will be brought about by a fundy evangelist. The math works!

        1. Pshhhh, one Fundy evangelist is worth two normal humans and 144,000 is nothing compared to the millions they see saved. Just ask them, the answer will be “yes, God has allowed me to see millions and millions saved”. Oh wait, maybe that’s McDonald’s with millions and millions served.

  16. Al right Holy Spirit, we have set the date and we expect you to do your duty. But just in case no one is convicted of sin, righteousness and judgement that’s ok. We have that covered. We’ve been able to integrate psychology into soul winning so it is almost impossible for someone to reject out plea. Over 11,000 folks are going to utter the sinners prayer. We’ve eliminated emotion, we don’t get wrapped up in the repent business, and since baptism isn’t a requirement then we’re all set. Ready. Set. GO!

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