Soulwinning Abroad

“People are so much more open to the gospel in East Botswana than they are here in the USA.”

Somehow the willingness of people to take tracts (that they can’t read), listen politely to a Romans Road presentation (that they don’t understand), and allow themselves to be coerced into saying The Prayer(TM) (that they can’t possibly grasp) translates into the idea that the rest of the world is still open to the Gospel while cold-hearted and money-minded Americans just aren’t that interested anymore. This, of course, means that money is much better spent on planting Independent Fundamental Baptist churches in Guinea-Bissau than caring for the homeless people who keep making a mess of the street in front of our church.

If you believe that the most effective evangelism is done in foreign lands by people who have little formal training, don’t understand the culture, and barely speak the language…you might be a fundamentalist.

169 thoughts on “Soulwinning Abroad”

    1. Well, we have to convert those heathens to American Fundamentalist Christianity. I mean, just look at how thye’re dressed. Shameful! They need to learn how to wear short sleeve dress shirts and ties like we do!

      1. THAT’S MY PROBLEM!!! I don’t wear short-sleeved dress shirts, especially not with a tie. I prefer long-sleeved, button down dress shirts. I must be in the wrong denomination.

        1. My hubby prefers long sleeved lightweight shirts, preferably white. But then, he’s also got some precancerous places on his skin…

      2. Your point brings up a question I’ve had for a long, long time: Do missionaries go abroad to establish Americanized churches? Is their goal to “show ’em how it’s done,” but only the way we do it here? Seems to me that a universal gospel message ought to work anywhere on planet earth, but that an Americanized Christianity and church organization only works here in the US. Maybe I’m wrong. I would be interested in responses by others on this blog.

        1. I don’t think they go for the express purpose of planting Americanized churches, but many of them seem to think that is how church should be because they are from such separated backgrounds they have never been taught anything else. There are many very good missionaries, but too many of the “if you don’t adopt my rules you must not be saved” variety.

          The Gospel is truly universal, God’s plan of Salvation for man. The problem is the works additions, that if you don’t follow some man-made rules, you must not be a true Christian.

      3. Reminds me of a story I read on another site–passed on secondhand, so grain of salt etc.

        Couple is sent on mission to a region of Africa where the women go topless, but wear voluminous skirts that nearly touch the ground when they walk. Couple wears proper, decent clothing for missionaries in the tropics, which includes for her a button-up shirt with elbow-length sleeves and baggy shorts that end just above the knee.

        Everywhere she goes, people stare at her. Men especially.

        Now, these aren’t the first white people in the area, by a long shot. So the wife is puzzled by the stares and sidelong glances. Finally she asks a local contact what’s going on.

        It turns out that in the local culture, breasts are for babies and nobody cares about them, or if they do they keep it to themselves because it would be considered a kink. But knees! Everybody knows that knees are the gateway to . . . higher things. And this white lady from America is walking around everywhere with her bare knees stickin’ out, mannnnn, it’s hard to concentrate on anything she says with those pointing right at you.

        Missionary wife immediately switches to long skirt. The friend of hers who related the story avers that she eventually started leaving her shirt off and then quit wearing a bra. (No word on what her husband might have said about this!)

  1. There is an element of truth to this, I will say. Non-Americans do tend to listen more politely to those who bring the gospel. Americans often have an air of cynicism that those in less advanced cultures often do not.

    Of course, one must adapt to the culture they minister in – and many missionaries do NOT do that. But the ones who do are extremely effective – fundamental or not.

    When I served the LORD overseas, I could see a distinct difference in the ministries that worked WITHIN the culture as opposed to those that worked DESPITE the culture. Those that took the culture to heart were able to work great things for the Lord.

    1. I would agree. When we went on mission trips to Jamaica, we noticed the missionaries “let” the locals do their own music which was WAY different than our fundy style music was.

      You could also see that they REALLY enjoyed their music too! People would dance clap and sing at the top of their lungs and were just so excited. We almost thought they were “charismaniacs”. :mrgreen:

      1. I remember our pastor telling us about a missions trip he took to Jamaica in which he accomplished the following important task: he explained to a group of Jamaican Bible College students why they needed to be King James Only.

    2. That’s true. The locals of the country respect you more if you become one of them, or at least try to speak their language, know their culture etc. I remember my former pastor would go on and on about C. T. Studd who went to China and dressed like them, ate like them etc. Shucks if I had to hear that story one more time!

  2. Reminds me of one of my favorite books…The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver.

    While living in Israel the founder of the ministry we were with claimed that he was going to start the First Baptist Church of the Jordan Valley. Never mind that after 25 years he hardly knew the language, the ministry had NEVER produced a single convert and all the Israeli believers on our kibbutz kept that information to themselves for fear of losing friends and family. A few years later we got a letter stating that they had in fact started their dream church. I imagine the congregation changed every June and September when new students arrived πŸ™„
    There was a great church a few minutes away in Tiberius…we were forbidden from visiting because they spoke in tongues. 😑

    1. “… we were forbidden from visiting because they spoke in tongues.”

      Like Arabic and Hebrew? πŸ˜›

      1. *snort*
        Perhaps if they had learned the language they would have realized that 😎

  3. Since I’m still trying to make sense of life without the IFB, how should it be done? Does the “Great Commission” even apply anymore? Missions is still an area I am confused about, so I’d appreciate thoughts and insight on the subject.

    1. I don’t understand how the Great Commission couldn’t apply anymore! Jesus didn’t put an expiration date on it, he said to “go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation”. If there’s anybody in the world who hasn’t heard the gospel, then yeah, I think it’s still Christians’ responsibility to proclaim it to them!

    2. Wayne – I think the difference lies in the fact that fundy “soulwinning” has almost no relationship to the Great Commission. Christ mandated that we “preach the gospel”…the Holy Spirit will do the rest. Fundy “soulwinning” is geared towards getting some poor, misunderstanding person to recite a magical prayer. The two have virtually nothing in common.

      The issue is twofold in my estimation:
      1. Fundies have an impotent God. In their world, God is not able to draw people unto Himself using the power of His Word…He needs the fundy to essentially coerce an unsuspecting person (and one who had no real understanding of who God is) into reciting a prayer.
      2. Fundies have a misunderstanding of the basics of salvation. They preach “acceptance” of Christ while that Bible teaches faith. This is how they “fundies” developed the “sinner’s prayer”…their theology teaches that if a person just verbalizes “acceptance” (i.e. makes a “decision”) then they are saved. How many have they mislead in this regard? Decisional regeneration is the basis of fundy “soulwinning” and is NOT found in the Scriptures.

      If you want to see true soulwinning in the Bible, see Acts 8:26-40. See how Philip took the time to walk the eunich through the Scriptures…contrast this with the “Romans Road” approach popularized by the heretics in Hammond.

      1. I like your points, but I think you may be using too broad of a brush with #1. Some IFB churches do “get it” and aren’t out to manipulate people into saying a prayer, but they don’t get a lot of attention.

        As for #2, I don’t see how one can become a disciple of Jesus Christ without making a decision at some point. Perhaps you could elaborate? Jesus told Peter & John “Follow me”, and they DECIDED to follow Him. They may not have been when they were saved, but without the decision, there would not have been regeneration.

        1. Guilt Ridden – I think you answered your questions with regards to #2 as well as I could. The decision is to follow AFTER belief (regeneration).

      2. Ah, here is an interesting point Mark 16:15 says in the KJV “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.”. Matthew 28:19 says “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:” The New King James, and other translations use the phrase “MAKE DISCIPLES” That requires an investment of time and energy, and is more than just preaching sermons and handing out tracts. (No wonder the fundys dont like modern translations, if they say that have to rub shoulders with “sinners”….)

      3. So bottom line is that Fundies are not Calvinists?

        Well, that pretty much sums up the entirety of their problems if you ask me.

    3. I think you need to answer FOR YOURSELF what it means to be saved, and what the Good News is. Then you can take a deeper look at your question.

      For me, this is the Gospel – I’ll paraphrase the words of Jesus – Change your thinking, and understand – the kingdom of heaven is within.

      The Great commission, to me, now becomes helping people understand that.

    4. I consider the Great Commission a mission statement for Jesus Christ’s church. No individual has ever fulfilled the great commission by going to “all” the world. We can and should be a candle for Jesus Christ where we are and allow the Holy Spirit to use us. We should be ready and prepared to answer questions about “the hope that is in us”.

      But going door-to-door, trying to “sell” heaven is what many IFB churches do. In today’s suspicious and paranoid society, they will have to go to many, many doors to even find a person who will listen to them, yet if they gain one member from 500 visits, they will still trumpet that “door-to-door soul-winning still works” and push everyone to follow this model.

      Some IFB churches don’t adopt a very balanced view – they tout the “billions and billions saved” (Sorry, McDonalds), but they only have a fraction of those baptized, and they NEVER report statistics on those who even stayed 13 weeks to take a beginning course about their supposedly new-found faith. Some churches (usually not IFB) are very good about training and teaching, but they tend to not be very evangelistic.

      Most IFB churches claim that the Great Commission is everyone’s responsibility (meaning, really, that they want everyone in the church going door-to-door), but in practice, they only believe that for the first part; they don’t let everyone baptize, and they don’t let everyone teach.

      1. shouldn’t you also apologize to Carl Sagan for the Billyiuns and Billyiuns? πŸ˜›

        1. Oop, George didn’t tell me what that looked like, meant “bill-yuns & bill-yuns” 😳

        2. Well, I was thinking of McDonalds “billions served”; but now that you mention it, that is a familiar C Sagan phrase…

    5. It’s okay, I felt pretty much the same way Mr. Wayne when I left the IFB nearly a year ago. As has been said already, it’s not about pressuring someone into reciting a prayer “after me.” While I find that street preaching and tracting is a way to get people’s attention, I find it much better to build up friendships with people and try to use my life as a way to show the gospel. Then when they ask you questions, you can tell them. Also it’s God that saves the person, it’s not up to us to pressure them into a decision. A mistake I often made, forgetting that it’s God who works on the person. We are not responsible for every single soul, God will give you opportunities to give people the gospel. God bless!

  4. Ding Ding Ding! Add the novelty of seeing “The foreigners” a weekly puppet show in an impoverished place,(guaranteeing that your audience is young and highly influential) and a manipulative, high-pressure altar call which leaves the options of “Come up here and say these vague words which are directly translated from the “Sinner’s PrayerTM” anddon’t translate well) or go to HELL” and you have the magic formula for HUNDREDS SAVED! I’ll never forget my parent’s favorite picture of the teens and children crowded around him during such an altar call. He would have his translator instruct them to say a prayer 10, 15 at one time. I was involved in these sometimes, and the process was an exercise in futility. The “church” disappeared the moment we and our puppet show left and my parents like to blame it on the instability within the country “They all moved away!” When in reality, out of the “hundreds” there are about two who still consider themselves Christians and they were almost immediately plunged into another identical work in another city to continue their brainwashing. Not even our translator who translated all of our materials and all of my father’s sermons considers himself a believer anymore. It’s not “easier” in other countries, the people are just less accustomed to the IFB brand of spiritual abuse and manipulation. But believe me, they start to figure it out before long.

    1. Wow, this sounds like “The Poisonwood Bible” was based on your family!

    2. Exactly; there are IFB Missionaries who shun such tactics and realize that it’s NOT “The Magic Sinner’s Prayer” that saves.

  5. Local ministries that feed the poor and reach the homeless are para-church organizations that are not under the leadership of an IFB MOG. Therefore, since they are not under the thumb of a MOG, they are following the ways of the world and therefore sending people to hell. At least that’s what I was taught.

    While I was still a fundie I got involved with a local ministry helping the poor. Word got back to my MOG and was advised to stop immediately or be removed from my volunteer staff position. Once month later I was gone!

    1. They actually PUNISHED you for helping the poor?
      Wow, that really beats all. 😯

        1. It was actually one of the last straws that happened to be bundled up in a tightly bound bail of straw that exploded into sweet freedom shortly thereafter.

          I’ve had to apologize to many people for my previous fundie behavior. Once to take the fundie blinders of fear off and look back, its amazing to see how ridiculous I was.

        2. In a way, I wish I could say I don’t understand. But I do. Ridiculous is a good word to describe the actions and attitudes of the past.

  6. People I’ve known seem to think that I would be against missions. I am not against them, but I think they need to be conducted with genuine love and respect for the people, a love that doesn’t depend upon a conversion to exist.

    By the way, happy Bob Dylan’s birthday to everyone. As befits this list, give a listen to SAVED today.

  7. This is a little off-topic, but while we’ve touched on “cold-hearted and money-minded Americans” not being interested in the gospel anymore, allow me a moment to rant: This is exactly what I hear from some of my evangelical and fundy acquaintances. Knowledgeable of the media claim that church attendance is plummeting in this country, especially in the Northeast, these folk assert that the wider population’s rejection of Christianity is the fault of the hearers. Among the comments I’ve heard: “They don’t believe because they don’t want to.” “They just want their ears tickled.” “They don’t want to be inconvenienced by going to church.” “They believe what THEY want to believe about Jesus and God, not what the Bible says” . . . and so on and so on.

    It never seems to occur to fundies and evangelicals that the reason their churches — and mainline churches, and Catholic churches — are shrinking might just be because the gospel is not being communicated to people in a way that really engages them. Why go to church when you’re going to hear irrelevant sermons, have your questions squelched, and sit through worship that doesn’t adequately touch the mind or the heart?

    But no . . . it’s

    1. I don’t know what happened, but I couldn’t finish my sentence. I started to say, “But no, it’s THEIR fault, not ours.”

    2. That first excuse, “They don’t believe because they don’t want to,” bears a speck of truth. Not everybody is ready to believe in a system that constantly reminds them they are wicked sinners, that one cannot possibly do/give enough for the Man-O-Gid, that music has to be tuneless and listened to in silence, that a woman has to be buttoned-up between neck and ankles AT ALL TIMES, that if you’re not dancing around being a happy little sunbeam for JAY-zuz every minute of the day then you’re just plain damned… oh no, why would anyone with more than two brain cells not want to believe in that? :mrgreen:

      1. Unfortunately, the churches that are as you describe (a minority of American churches) are the ones most “unchurched” people think of when they think of “church.”

        1. But instead of “They don’t believe because they don’t want to,” I would say, “They don’t believe because they find it unpersuasive.”

        2. I would add that for many others, especially in the northeast, “church” is just a social club where everyone sits around in a warm, cozy room, hears a couple of amateur performances of classical music, pats themselves on the back for how liberal and “welcoming” they are, and hears a lecture on current events and global issues. Not that there is anything wrong with any of that per se, but when that is ALL that church is (and more and more of the mainline denominations are falling into that trap of insipidity), there is no “there” there for people to hold onto and value. Church should be more than a liberal arts club. Sadly, for many denominations, that is all it has become. I guess what I am saying is that the American church has been hijacked by BOTH the radical conservative AND the radical liberal movements. In some parts of the country, there isn’t much “church” left in the middle for those of us that want to go worship God in spirit and in truth and study the Bible with fellow believers.

        3. Couldn’t have said it better, Deacon’s son! I would have to say that I do agree that Americans are less receptive to the gospel. Generally wealthier societies are less open.

          Unfortunately, you can’t blame this problem completely on the fundies. We also have a tepid consumer church culture in America, and unbelievers can see through the gimics and junk we throw out there to attract them.

          If I were an unbeliever, I would be repulsed by extreme fundamentalists, but I would be equally as nauseated, by seeker sensitive neo-evangelicalism who want to suck me in with their pitiful marketing schemes.

        4. I can say, in all honesty, that I consider myself a Christian and I do not go to church. I haven’t attended a church in about 4 years now, and I have no plans to attend one in the near future. I grew up SB and attended church regularly until college. I was always deeply involved in the church, singing, attending activities, teaching, etc. Once in college, I helped with a small church that wore me to the ground and had a pastor whose sermons I did not at all agree with. After leaving there, I stayed out for a couple of years until I found another church I could call home. I was very involved in that church for about 3 years until I had to move back home. After moving home, I found it incredibly difficult to find a church that preached the true gospel and/or wasn’t “cliquish” and off-putting. It’s so, *so* difficult for me to be part of a place where there is so much hurt going on in the shadows…and so much cynicism and back-stabbing in the name of Jesus. As someone who believes that the root of the gospel is Love, kindness, selflessness, etc, I cannot bring myself to become involved in places where self-help is preached and blatant, unrepentant sin lurks behind the curtains. I know quite a few “young” adults who feel the same way I do…so it’s not just the “unsaved” avoiding church…it’s the saved, too…the saved who just can’t bear to be a part of a system that doesn’t seem to reflect Jesus at all.

    3. Or it’s thanks to science and having greater access to information on the internet, many of us have figured out the claims made by religion are nonsense, and that β€œthe elect” are no better than anyone else.

      1. Let’s keep the atheist vs Christian ideas to a minimum here, no one needs a flame war. A lot of Christians do respect science, and you don’t have to be an atheist to poke fun at the funless Fundies. πŸ˜•

      2. I agree with PandaRose; Christians (surely not only fundamentalists) can come across as “I’m better than you because I’m a Christian”, and that is wrong. We are just sinners saved by the grace of God. I remember once, to my great shame, many years ago, telling someone that because he wasn’t saved, he didn’t have any morals. Stupidity and arrogance; a very bad combination.

      3. Hmm, that didn’t feel very flame-y to me. I don’t agree with Mark, but he’s got a right to post just as much as anyone. And that wasn’t nearly as rude as the fundy troll-bys we get.

        You’re right Mark – the elect aren’t better than anyone else. That’s rather the point. πŸ™‚

  8. When all the Native Americans and Mexicans were converted to Catholicism, they became servants of the church, building the numerous missions along the coast of California and serving the church. These “new Christians” turned from their own cultures. I just can’t help but feel bitter about all of that!

    Once again, men of God abusing their power and treating these individuals as though they were lower than them. It still happens this way in other countries.

    A good friend of mine has dedicated so much of her life in traveling overseas to win souls and yet her own grown children ache to have her attention.

    I say tend to your own gardens here… the fruits of your labor here will yield the seeds that will drift and carrying themselves along, inevitably into fields where they will grow!

    ~~~Heart πŸ˜‰

    1. I agree. One of the most surreal experiences I have ever had in America was when I was on an IFB youth “missions trip” to New Mexico and we attended a Native American dance at a pueblo in the shadow of an ancient gigantic adobe Catholic church that loomed empty and abandoned over our heads.

  9. Are you going to start that as a new post? “You might be a fundamentalist if…” GO!

  10. Seems “soul-winning” as a lingering term from your fundy days might be clouding your judgment regarding the Great Commission.
    Whether you believe the end of Mark’s account was written by him or not, no one is to be excluded from the love of God by us, even our enemies. This includes the gospel, Jesus is the gospel, Jesus is God, God is love, love is described in Corinthians well, and we’re to love our enemies.
    Also, this is not our home. We, in a fundy and a worldly way, have drawn lines, built fences, had wars, and have parades that changes what we believe missionaries are. “Here” and “there” changes in meaning completely if we understand Who we belong to and Who we’re to glorify even while here. Our poor (regardless of where you live now) are just as love-deserving as those over yonder. In other words, as Christians, I believe we should exclude no one if possible.
    I used to call mission trips “Glorified Vacations” just after leaving IFB life, but that was me judging other’s motivations to do what they thought they were to do. I’d say things like “we have people right here that need our help…” yet I wasn’t doing anything about it. We step out of fundyism and realize our error in our past legalistic ways… and the pendulum swings to the other side and before we know it, we’re doing just the same thing we were doing before.
    That said, I ask the questions, “What is missions anyways? What is the purpose?” I’m not cynical with these questions, I really want to know.

    [3] Mary therefore took a pound of expensive ointment made from pure nard, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. [4] But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (he who was about to betray him), said, [5] “Why was this ointment not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?” [6] He said this, not because he cared about the poor, but because he was a thief, and having charge of the moneybag he used to help himself to what was put into it. – Jhn 12:3-6 ESV

    I’ve sometimes acted like Judas regarding missions.

    1. There is nothing wrong with missions done purely as a love-gift to God, like the woman breaking the jar of expensive oil (modern equivalent maybe presenting a surprise luxury dinner of top-grade sashimi or something else expensive that wouldn’t keep). But missions undertaken without discernment are useful only to make the missionary feel good and may be worse than useless to the people who are supposedly being served.

      Questions prospective missionaries should ask themselves:

      1. Am I duplicating somebody else’s efforts? Who’s already there (not just from my denomination or church)? Who’s been here before? Am I taking coal to Newcastle?

      2. Do local people need what I’m offering? How do I know? Do I know anybody local or can I get in contact with them, even through a translator? Do I envision myself swooping in to rescue people without first finding out if they are in trouble?

      3. Would my showing up cause more problems than I solved? Is somebody from my country, ethnic identity, or church arriving in this neighborhood going to be inflammatory by their mere presence?

      4. What are the rudest gestures in this culture? What are the rules about interaction between men and women? Adults and children? Adults and elders? What is the local version of modesty–attire, posture, expression, speech? How does one hold a polite conversation in this culture? What exactly does “on time” mean? How are guests expected to behave? How do people say no?

      5. If I were dropped in a completely unknown neighborhood in this area, without a guide or interpreter, could I find my way back to the mission/bus station/embassy?

      1. Great questions. Especially the last two. I was stranded in a town so small that the boat owner of the broken down boat I had been riding on had to get a ride to another village to call for help once on the Amazon River. I was the only English speaker around and had very little Portuguese or Spanish in my language arsenal. I never really thought about it, but it would be interesting to watch would-be missionaries stranded in a new place just to watch their actions and observe how they handle things. At least the South American and European countries I have been in use familiar letters, so a reasonably intelligent person can decipher some words. Riding buses and trains in China can be a bit more interesting.

        I know people who freak out in the US if they don’t know where they are, or any of the people around. I don’t know what they would do dropped down on a street in, say, Guyana.

  11. Funny how this gets mixed with the typical IFB overblown worship of the USA. Maybe it’s harder to witness to people who you can’t look down on properly?

  12. I think the main problem with missions it has evolved today stems from its roots in British Colonialism. Many of the early missionaries were no better than, and often part of, companies like the British East India Company or the Hudson Bay Company. When the United States began sending out missionaries, they weren’t much better. Taking the Bible to the natives along with your powdered wigs just doesn’t work, but when there is a beam in your eye, it is hard to focus on truth.

    There are mission agencies that do work to adapt to cultures, but the denominational churches don’t seem to like them, because they don’t work to propagate the denomination. We seem to have forgotten that if culture were part of the great commission, then we would be wearing robes and sandals.

    “Go ye therefore and take your rule system, baptizing them into skirts on women, short hair on men, and the old droning hymns of the past.”

      1. I laughed when I saw that it was a Methodist chapel. The Methodist church is very active in Africa. Our conference has partnered with Libera. We have built a school and helped rebuild a hospital after their civil war. The United Methodist church has also commited to end maleria on the continent.

        1. When I looked for the clip, I couldn’t remember the denomination. It just reminded me of a lot of missionaries I have met who insist on using familiar (to us) hymns translated to the language of their congregation, whether they matched the culture or not.

          I heard a missionary once tell a fairly fundy congregation that he was “going to Spain to plant churches just like this one”. I’ve often since wondered how Lower Alabama and Spanish cultures mix.

  13. It is my observation that a lot of IFB missionaries engage in hideous cultural insensitivity for a number of reasons:

    (1) They are poorly vetted (if they are vetted at all). They basically get to go anywhere in the entire world simply because they feel “called” to do so regardless of whether they are a good “fit” for that particular part of the world.

    (2) They are poorly educated (if they are educated at all). I saw an “anthropology” syllabus from West Coast Baptist College that was basically a class in how to spiritually manipulate other cultures like we have learned to spiritually manipulate our own.

    (3) They are poorly trained (if they are trained at all). They have never been taught how to differentiate between Christianity as such and the anachronistic American conservative cultural values that are the lifeblood of American fundamentalism.

    (4) They are poorly prepared (if they are prepared at all). They are not equipped to handle culture shock, homesickness, cultural identity, long-distance relationships with family and friends, etc.

    I could go on, but my point is that a lot of distasteful behavior from American missionaries is due to a complete lack of anything resembling preparation for their ministry work. I hasten to add that many missionaries are very well prepared and those that are not are hardly to blame. The IFB church as an institution is to blame for sending out people that are not ready or equipped for their work.

    1. Agreed. You hit the problem on the head. I would add one thing from my experience in missions. The things that you listed do contribute to the high attrition rate among missionaries but the biggest discouragement is deputation itself. It is physically exhausting and more than a little humiliating to beg for money for 3 or 4 years straight. Then you get to do it all again every few years. In my humble opinion, lack of adequate training combined with the deputation experience sets missionaries up for failure.

      1. I agree about deputation. Just another way that MOGs have devised for themselves to lord over others. First, they forbid individual believers from sponsoring missionaries on their own by requiring “storehouse” tithing and such nonsense. Then, they take advantage of the missionary family by having them come and give them free music and preaching for an entire church service or two, usually without any compensation whatsoever (except maybe what’s left of the “love offering” after the MOG takes his cut). Then comes the fun part in which the MOG toys with the family, sometimes for weeks or months, before deciding whether to furnish them with $250-500 a year in support or not. Finally, for the lucky ones, there is the phone call or letter of support, accompanied by a long list of stipulations and burdensome expectations.

        My mother once convinced our pastor not to support a missionary family because the father said in his sermon that he had adopted his wife’s son, so my parents invited them over for dinner to find out what happened. The wife had been married previously and her son was from that first marriage. Her first husband had abandoned her. In order to go overseas, the father had adopted her son so that it would be easier to get their visas approved. My mother told our pastor that because the father had married a divorced woman, he was living in adultery and that we could not support him. The pastor agreed.

      2. We were on deputation for 5 years trying to get to the Amazon region of Brazil. I was going to work in and teach children’s ministry, as well as use my 20+ years (at that time) of aircraft maintenance experience on the mission aircraft. I would also have done general handyman work at homes and the mission hospital when requested. One of my other plans was to learn small engine repair to help work on motorbikes and boat motors with my neighbors in the small town we hoped to live in.

        We decided to resign our position because we felt it was wrong to keep the supporting churches we had when they could use their money somewhere else. I heard more than once that since I wasn’t a “church planter” I was not a real missionary. I have been to churches that expected me to join the pastor in door to door “soul-winning” (which I have never liked); gone to other states only to find the pastor gone and that I was cheap “pulpit-filler”; and had to get my own housing for the night even after being told it would be provided. There were also very good churches that we still have some contact with. Most of those were either pastored by ex-missionaries or were not Baptist.

        I believe missionaries can be very effective, but there needs to be a change in who and how they are sent. The best salesmen of themselves don’t necessarily make for the best missionaries.

        1. As a note, we spent a month in the town where we hoped to live, getting to know the people a little and deciding before we began if we thought we could fit in and live there. Too many young couples right out of school raise support, go somewhere they have never even visited, and try to minister to people they have never met while trying to get to know each other as a new couple who have never really been on their own. Add to that different styles of worship, ministry, dress, and culture and it is no wonder the first term attrition rate is so high.

        2. So, out of curiosity, what are the names of these churches that have been mentioned, that have not corrupted the scriptures in their pulpits, and where are they?

          BTW, I just read Romans and I Corinthians as a book in recent days and do know basic Hermaneutics, thanks. I work hard to stay faithful to the Word in my preaching too, but understand your concern, because many IFB pastors do not. Oh, and I do not hold strictly to my denomination, but the Bible (“Baptist” is not a denomination, it is a slanderous term given by the sprinklers and pourers to a group that believed the Bible and therefore dunked people for baptism); I just know what the denominational headquarters of those denominations spoken of put forth as their beliefs. Good for those that are independent bodies that believe the Bible, having separated from their corrupt headquarters!

      3. I agree about the deputation part. It is ridiculous that IBF churches are so independent that every missionary has to step on eggshells around every pastor, because of that pastor’s “pet” doctrines.

        I had this happen to me more than a few times as a church planter with some pastors separating from me because I do not believe in “Closed” Communion (we believe in “Close”: do not have to be a member of the church, but DO have to be saved, baptized, and right with the Lord (by your own profession)).

        I also had other denominations ask me, “Why don’t other churches in your denomination support you?” The Lutherans, Methodists, and Catholics in our area do not preach the Gospel and yet support their church plants and missionaries. You would think we would be EXTRA CAREFUL to ensure our baby churches were nourished and taken care of, but often it is not the case. We either have pastors that desire to pastor the 200,000 people in our county (therefore needing no extra churches) or those that do not see the importance of supporting church plants in the USA. Praise God for the few that DO help us though!

        1. “Do not preach the Gospel?”

          Then what have I been listening to from the lips of Lutheran and Episcopalian ministers pretty much every Sunday for my entire life? Who are these strange people, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, whose words I have both heard and read from beginning to end? And who is this “Jesus” person they keep quoting?

          What, am I actually Buddhist? πŸ˜€

        2. Lutherans, Methodists, and Catholics don’t preach the Gospel?
          Oh really?

          I’m just wondering– Have you ever been to a Lutheran, Methodist, or Catholic church service?
          Because I’ve been to all three, and the Gospel was read and preached at all of them, every Sunday.
          The explication of the scripture may not have always been perfect– but can you really say it’s always perfect at your church?

        3. The Gospel is the death, burial, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ and is meant to be believed by sinners in order to receive salvation. No, Methodists, Lutherans, and Catholics do not preach the Gospel. They preach another gospel, which is not another (see Galatians 1), at least in this area. The Lutheran, Methodists, and Catholics preach salvation by works (Law), not by Grace through faith (see Ephesians 2:8-9). The Catholic catechism teaches clearly many heresies including the need to remember the sacraments to be saved, praying to Mary and their self-appointed “saints, and the infallibility of the Pope.

          If you go to one of these denominations that actually preaches the Gospel clearly and believes it, then good for you; but that church is not the mainstream.

          To be clear again, the Gospel is the good news of Jesus being enough for our salvation. We are sinners that have broken God’s Law (see the Ten Commandments for a few); we must bear the consequences of breaking His Law (Romans 3:10, 23; 6:23) which is eternity in Hell, suffering His wrath upon our sin. Thankfully we have a great High Priest named Jesus (Hebrews 7-10) who lived a perfect life and died as our substitute on Calvary. Being our substitute, He shed His blood to pay our sin debt and suffered God’s wrath upon Himself; thereby redeeming all mankind. The GOOD NEWS is that Jesus paid our sin debt (Romans 3:23-26) to allow eternal life to be available to ALL MEN for FREE. We cannot do any good work to gain eternal life, because the work is done (Ephesians 2:8-9)! All we have to do is believe on the Lord Jesus Christ to be saved from our sin (Act 16:31; John 3:16).

          No, the Catholics especially do not preach so great a salvation. They corrupt it.

        4. …and yes, I have been in one of their church services. It was one of the saddest, most Spirit-deprived, tradition-filled things I have ever had to sit through. Sadly, the people were too…

        5. I call BS. No Methodist or Lutheran ever preached salvation through works. It is completely antithetical to the doctrines of both churches. The Lutheran church, in particular, lays emphasis on the fact that salvation is solely by faith.

        6. I grew up in a Methodist church and The Gospel of Grace was preached faithfully. However I grew up in Northern Ireland where a lot of Cultural Baggage and Tradition came with the package. The Church I grew up in was very Evangelical, but there were other Churches in the town which claimed to be far MORE Evangelical, but had even more Cultural restraints and Traditions and expectations foisted on their flocks…..
          Salvation by works? Naaaahhh……

        7. Salvation by works? Nonsense!

          I am 42 years old and I have never heard salvation by works preached even one time in the Lutheran church of my childhood or the Episcopalian church for which I am Sunday school director today.

          Luther summarized his own theology thus: “We are beggars; that is true. Alleluia!”

          Meanwhile, Episcopalians, the Anglicans from which we spring, and also Lutherans preach that because Jesus saves we should therefore obey Jesus’ explicit commands to do good works among our fellow people. Love is the heart of the Two Greatest Commandments, and love is action.

        8. Fine. If you do not believe me, go and ask your pastor/priest/minister/clergyman what a person needs to do to get to Heaven and/or if a person can be certain of Heaven. If they answer that no one can know that Heaven is their home, or anything other than “Yes, salvation is by grace through faith in Jesus Christ.” (or the equivalent), then you know for sure that they do not believe that Jesus is enough for salvation.

          I would personally ask, “Does confirmation, baptism, partaking of the sacraments, doing of good deeds, etc. contribute to my salvation?” See what they say and then come back to me (ask them for Bible references too!). If they actually preach salvation by grace then praise the Lord for it! If you do not personally know their stand and will not do this, then you have no right to comment, but I truly encourage you to find out!

          By the way, I repeatedly mentioned that this is true for the Catholics and Protestants IN MY AREA (Mid-Atlantic USA).

        9. I know a lot of Baptists that think they will get to Heaven because they are good. You need to lose your denominational prejudices and focus on Scripture. Read 1 Corinthians and Romans as books, not a series of stand alone sentences. Paul teaches against the schisms and divisions you are propagating.

        10. Sometimes the differences are semantics; sometimes they’re not.

          I know IFB pastors who say that salvation is by faith alone yet they may also say that you need to do things like repent, confess, pray a prayer, walk forward to make a public declaration, or show fruit in your life afterward.

        11. What makes you think I comment with no knowledge. I absolutely know where my ministers, and my denomination, stand on these issues.

        12. Oh, hey, and in regards to that bit up-thread about the unchurched population of the Northeast?

          Perhaps they’re also looking at a group of institutions that say they listen daily to the all-loving, all-knowing, all-powerful father of the universe, and even have his spirit moving in their midst, and yet still can’t sort out these who-said-what-to-whom-about-what-to-do-when-so-go-here details at the same time they also claim that our unchurched fates for all eternity hang in the balance?

          Um. Doesn’t help with overall plausibility of this entire story, I’m forced to point out as one of the unwashed in question.

        13. @LookingtoJesus: I have asked those questions. What makes you think I wouldn’t? We are encouraged to ask questions all the time. The four-year Education for Ministry course taught at Episcopal and other churches, which follows two years of Bible study with a year each of Church history and theology, consists basically of asking questions along with reading, prayer, and private rumination. Despite its name, it’s for everybody past the age of confirmation, because all people have a ministry that they must discern with God’s help. A priest often leads it, but the priest is not the teacher. The priest is there to learn, just like the rest of us. Agnostics, Quakers, Catholics, just plain unchurched, whatever–anybody who is willing to do the hard work (and this is a brain-stretching four years!) is welcome. If you can find an EFM class in your neighborhood, I strongly urge you to take it.

          I never had to explicitly ask, “What must I do to go to Heaven?” because I was told over and over from my earliest days. The answer: With God’s help, take God’s hand.

          Who are these ministers who say that you can’t meet God without sacraments or good works or confirmation class? What denomination permits this kind of teaching?

        14. This is what Jesus said was the Gospel, from Isaiah, as stated in Luke 4:18

          “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free,

          I grew up in a GARB church, and have been a United Methodist for 25 years, had my kids attend a Lutheran school, and made a Roman Catholic Cursillo. De Colores! I’m hear to tell you that all these churches teach that salvation comes through Christ.
          However, works must accompany this faith. You want scripture, here it is.

          James 2:14-17
          14 What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? 15 Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you says to them, β€œGo in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? 17 In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

          Matthew 25:34-40
          34 β€œThen the King will say to those on his right, β€˜Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

          37 β€œThen the righteous will answer him, β€˜Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

          40 β€œThe King will reply, β€˜Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

          This is what my pastor wrote in our churches newsletter last week, “We believe Jesus is Lord. We believe in calling others to follow Jesus . . .not forcing or bribing or manipulating, but inviting others to meet the Christ who has transformed us. We believe the church needs to live in such ways that the community is a better place for us being part of it”.

        15. The sacraments don’t save us, but are a way that we get to experience God’s grace. It is not based on anything that we do.

          You might want to read up on church doctrines.

        16. You know something is happening here, but you don’t know what it is; do you, Mr. Jones? (Happy birthday, Bob; you saw this guy coming)

      4. By the way, I enthusiastically concur with “hitting the problem on the head.”

        Percussive maintenance, while widely practiced around the world, does not get the respect it deserves, when being discussed in polite company.

  14. In the mid 1980s, I taught English as a second language in China. I remember one time a person approaching me on a train in the Guangzhou area to see if I could help him with a Bible and literature smuggling operation.

    At that time in China, if you exercised some cultural sensitivity, you really didn’t have to smuggle anything unless you were just interested in making the Chinese government mad at you. I brought books into China from Hong Kong, but they were never “smuggled.”

    1. Yeah, the thing is, Bibles by that time were not contraband in China (it would have been different at the height of the Cultural Revolution). So smuggling Bibles was just a way of dramatizing oneself.

    1. Thanks, Lady Julian, for the link. I plan to read more this evening when I come in from the yardwork I have been neglecting to read this post string. I’m headed outside now.

  15. It amazes me at how many IFB churches will support missionaries going to foreign lands and national pastors en masse (because it is cheaper to do it in bulk…no kidding), but will not support the church planter or church restart. We have lost a passion for working to reinforce the churches in America, because it is easier to send a paycheck to a missionary to do it overseas! What we forget is that if the churches in America fail, no missionaries will be sent overseas!

    1. I know preachers who don’t support “home missions” because those people are in a position to get an extra job or travel to churches to build up the extra needed.

      When they are to find the time for that and work in a struggling ministry is a question I never get an answer to.

      1. It is not possible; no matter what anyone says. If you overextend yourself, something always lacks (usually it ends us being the family or ministry and never the secular job). I pastor a small church restart (2 years into it) and started out working for the local cable company. The Lord quickly showed me that I was putting 40 hours a week into the cable company and around 10 hours into the church. Working at something 10 hours a week makes it a hobby; not a job. My wife and I prayed over it for a few months and I quit the cable company to go full-time by faith (the church pays us nothing, but does supply a parsonage). After I could put all my time and effort into the work God called me to do, He started blessing.

        We did seek support for a little while, but stopped after a few months, because (again) it was eating into our ministry work. Thankfully, we do have a few church’s supporting us, but not near as many as could, mostly because of my previous statement.

        I have learned that we live in a day where Christians do not know how to have faith and have few examples to look to regarding living the faith life. We are trying to be naive enough to believe the Bible and trust Him for our needs. Your prayers are appreciated.

  16. I worked bivocationally as a pastor for a few years. It was hard, but doable. I can’t figure out why that’s not more frequently presented as an option with home missions.

    1. How many preachers can do something part-time that will provide them with enough money to make it worth it? I’m talking job skills here. Especially if they preacher boys who went to college just for that. The pastor of my old church resigned (finally!) and he has only ever been a military policeman (with a medical discharge) and a pastor. He shouldn’t be pastoring, but at the same time, I can’t imagine facing trying to find a job at 50+ in this economy with no skills.

    2. My spouse was a bi-vocational pastor for 4 years. It was extremely difficult for all of us. He had a 45 min. drive to work & a 20 min. drive to church. He was working 40+ hrs/wk at his job & devoting 20 hrs/wk to ministry.

      How much time do you think he had for our family? How much time did he have for regular maintenance of our home & vehicles (we didn’t live in the parsonage even though it was offered because it had mold issues)?

      I’d recommend potential bi-vocational pastors carefully consider every aspect of ministry combined with their goals for family time and the hours spent earning a living before they commit.

  17. β€œPeople are so much more open to the gospel in East Botswana than they are here in the USA.”

    “All those foreigners are so much better/spiritual than us” is the slightly more attractive twin of the “all those foreigners are evil and wish us harm” mentality.

    Seeing an entire group of people as monolithic, whether for good or for evil, is problematic. It doesn’t view them as individual people but rather as constructs. Fundies are familiar with constructs of foreign lands but not their actuality.

    The construct referenced in this post is useful in fundy churches. It gives Mogs something to use to condemn their people. People Over There are so much better. “I know a missionary in Starvationland and his people have no problem tithing and giving.”

    In additon, this also provides a handy excuse for churches not growing. People in America are just so hardened to the Gospel.

    1. “They’re so much more spiritual because they’re so attentive and agreeable” completely fails to take into account the extent to which the poor benighted heathens (sic!) feel constrained to be polite to guests even if the guests are complete jerks and the “heathens” have been regular communicants since childhood.

      Speaking of poor benighted heathens, we got a letter to the editor in the local paper a while back basically saying, “All y’all are bound for Hell, we’re running back to Minnesota trailing prayers all the way” and detailing a tale of horror, HORROR I tell you, which proved conclusively that my town is full of zombies and perverts.

      Translation: “We walked into the waterfront bar that promises right on the sign that you can get very drunk for a very long time there and we were absolutely shocked to find out that desperate addicts tend to congregate in such places. And they noticed us!”

  18. Some random missionary cultural moments from my childhood in fundieland:

    (1) The “Missionary to the Navajo in New Mexico” who told me that he couldn’t learn how to speak Navajo so he just gave up and passed out Navaho tracts and let them sing Navaho hymns at church. (At least he was cool with that! On the other hand, he also told me that one time some Navajo dolls went all Chucky on his ass and started rattling around in his closet and jumped him when he opened the door.)

    (2) The “Missionary to Burkina Faso” who could not actually pronounce “Burkina Faso,” or the word “Muslim,” or the word “Allah.” And also he did not speak French or Arabic.

    (3) The “Missionary to England” who told my sister that there is a need for American IFB missionaries to come be missionaries to the churches in England to teach them that it is a sin for women to wear pants and other important doctrines of the faith.

    (4) The “Missionary to Edmond, Oklahoma” who had a slide show of the “false religions” that operated in Edmond, including photos of the local Catholic Church, the Antiochian Orthodox Church, and the Greek Orthodox Church.

    (5) The “Missionary to Mexico” whose wife left him because she got sick of his string of Mexican girlfriends who made out with him because “Mexicans greet each other with kissing.”

    (6) The “Missionary to Russia” who told me that the Russian Orthodox liturgy was incomprehensible gibberish to the average Russian, which I later found out was because most of the modern Russian language was incomprehensible gibberish to said missionary.

    1. The Edmond, OK is rather interesting, didn’t realize there existed so many godless heathens right in our own backyard. And you don’t need to get shots, either! πŸ˜›

    2. 1. Navajo is a notoriously difficult language to learn for speakers of non-Athabaskan languages. That doesn’t mean you can’t learn it; it just means it takes more time. You’d think it would be worth the effort for someone who wants to preach to Navajos.

      2. I’ve long wanted to go to Burkina Faso, but not for any good or pious reason. It’s because I’m dying to be able to say I’ve been to Ouagadougou. Ouagadougou, Ouagadougou, Ouagadougou, Ougadougou.

      3. England needs missionaries? Really?

      4. When you run out of heathens to proselytize, you can always go after the Christian who aren’t the “right” kind of Christians.

      5. Mexicans (and many other Latinos) greet each other with a version of an “air kiss.” I’ve done it many times. It’s more putting your cheek near the other person’s than giving a big, sloppy smooch.

      6. The Mongolian Baptist liturgy is incomprehensible gibberish to me. Of cours, it might be different if I knew any Mongolian.

    3. That’s one thing I quite like about a young couple from our church who have decided to become missionaries in Senegal. The wife has already spent a few years there before they were married, so she knows French and the local tribal dialect already. The husband, however, did not yet know the languages. So what did they do? They first spent a year in France so he could learn some French! After that, they went to Senegal, where, several days a week, he studies the local tribal dialect.
      I am impressed with that, honestly. To recognise that you’re the one coming in here, it’s on you to learn their language, not on them to learn English.

    4. If a missionary came here to England to tell us it was a sin to wear pants he might find that a serious response to this statement was not at all what he had in mind… πŸ˜†

      1. “Pants” in England doesn’t mean exactly what it does in the U.S., does it, Jo A? πŸ˜†

        1. He should tell the heathen Englishmen that it’s a sin for their women to wear suspenders too. That which pertaineth to a man and all.

        2. If women wore trousers, how would you know if they were wearing suspenders?

        3. It’s a truth universally acknowledged that all English ladies wear pants when attending church…

        4. No, it sure does not! πŸ˜€ . . . nor does “suspenders” mean what it means here. πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€

          (Thank you, Monty Python, for teaching me that!)

        5. Actually, I’d like to see what the response would be in Scotland about pants: “Well of course our wimmen wear pants, ye think they wanna be mistaken for the men?!” (ducks to avoid tomatoes) πŸ˜›

  19. I just finished reading The Poisonwood Bible. It’s a fascinating look at an American family “saving” the heathens. It is a work of fiction, but still a great idea of what this can look like.

  20. Match the Title with the Pic above and you have the the opening line for a Phil Kidd stand-up routine…

    “While out Soulwinning, a broad a dude and their son were motorcycling through the Jungle…”

    1. My female English professor Ph.D. friend likes to say that one of her students was sent to study abroad, but she didn’t like him and sent him back.

      1. I have heard it alleged about one or two different people that their churches kept them in foreign missions as a way of keeping them sufficiently out of the way of everyone at home …

        1. “Dear Chief Timcozzi,

          “Please accept this letter with the enclosed currency as a down payment on your custodial care of my nephew, Earl. Just a reminder that Earl is what we in this part of the world call pig-ignorant and proud of it. He is convinced that he and he alone knows how to do everything, and I do mean everything. Unfortunately, my brother is the pastor of our church, so nobody can say a word to Earl.

          “As we agreed, Earl is to be a ‘missionary’ to your valley. He expects to be given language lessons, so feel free to teach him any phrases you may find amusing. If he misbehaves, please do subject him to any loud and scary Hollywood-style tribal ritual that you can dream up, short of actual maiming, and then put him on a plane home. But I think that by and large your village will find him highly entertaining. Just remember: if you blog about him, do it in Tok Pisin!

          “Thanks again for taking Earl on for a few years. We can all breathe a sigh of relief here in Poughkeepsie.

          Margaret Sherple
          Separated and Sanctified Little Church of the Valley”

    2. One of my (male, older) professors kept referring to women as “broads”. As in “go to the bar, pick up a broad”. I was not amused. Much eyebrow was raised.

    1. The history and nature of Mormon missionary efforts is a vast, rich subject in itself, but it’s really outside the scope of this blog. πŸ˜•

  21. “If you believe that the most effective evangelism is done in foreign lands by people who have little formal training, don’t understand the culture, and barely speak the language…you might be a fundamentalist.”

    Yeah…like your dad, right? You self-righteous prick.

    1. My dad never claimed that foreign evangelism was easier than evangelism done in the USA. Quite the opposite, in fact.

      But hey, thanks for calling me names.

      1. And I thank you as well, since I consider myself a fundamentalist and you defined fundamentalist as people who have little formal training, don’t understand the culture, and barely speak the language; and, since name-calling by definition is the use of offensive names especially to win an argument or to induce rejection or condemnation (as of a person or project) without objective consideration of the facts; I must therefore thank you for calling me names (although I would not consider myself to have little formal training, I speak 3 languages, and would like to think I have a decent grasp on the culture in which I work.

        I know my point will be taken the moment my reply is criticized as being the longest run-on sentence in rebuttal history, since attacking grammar seems to be the last-ditch effort you people exert when you know you’ve been owned.

        What’s frustrating about this site is the generalization to all what is known to be isolated instances. These are classic signs of bitterness mixed with narcissistic arrogance and apathetic indifference (and if that last statement is redundant, I don’t really care).

        I browse this site about twice a month just to get a kick out of what you post. Sometimes you got a point, sometimes it’s a stretch; but one thing you can count one, your clones are about as mindless as the crazy fundies who are the only reason you have a blog and are popular in the first place. You all despise and mock fundies but you have an insatiable need for them. Your identities are intimately intertwined with the very ones who you call the enemy. I laugh at the paradox that is the paradigm of your sad existence.

        1. Life is too short to unpack all the internal contradictions in the foregoing screed.

        2. “longest run-on sentence in rebuttal history,” and all I can say is whew! πŸ™‚

        3. Self aware enough to note his own grammatical errors, unwilling to correct them.

          You’d think anyone with even a hint of self awareness would be able to recognize they’ve fallen this far down the fundy rabbit hole.

        4. Although the misuse of paradigm (at least I can’t think of a definition that fits what he’s trying to use it to communicate), kind of undermines my theory that he’s self aware, and could just be using some fancy words he’s heard and not understood.

        5. “I know my point will be taken the moment my reply is criticized as being the longest run-on sentence in rebuttal history … ”


          A long, convoluted sentence does not a run-on make. A run-on sentence is TWO INDEPENDENT CLAUSES that have been joined together without a comma/coordinating conjunction or a semi-colon.

          If you’re going to complain about people complaining about your grammar (lol), try to do it right!


        6. First, I love how Robm points out that my sentence is a run-on, while in a rare display of intelligence, Miss Polecat points out that it indeed is not! As for attacking my usage of the word paradigm, at it’s simplest it means a typical pattern of something. I will use it in a sentence: Apparently Robm has become accustomed to following the his own special paradigm, that is, the pattern if being wrong.

        7. Ha ha, scratch the extra article in my example sentence to Robm πŸ™‚ The truth is, we all have our own paradigm of idiocy we sometimes display on accident!

        8. Serious projection going on here. The attitudes you seem to assign upon Darrell D are those you brought with you.

          I laugh at the paradox that is the paradigm of your sad existence.

        9. “Ha ha, scratch the extra article in my example sentence to Robm The truth is, we all have our own paradigm of idiocy we sometimes display on accident!”

          Evidence that the wrath of George falls upon the just and the unjust alike.

        10. “since I consider myself a fundamentalist”

          You have my pity.

          These are classic signs of bitterness mixed with narcissistic arrogance and apathetic indifference

          Thank you Dr. K

        11. Also, that’s *Mrs.* Polecat. Believe it or not, there’s a man out there who actually enjoys my rare wit and obnoxious personality. 😯

        12. Don’t worry about a thing, ’cause every little thing is gonna be all right. (3 Birds 1:2)

        13. “I browse this site about twice a month just to get a kick out of what you post.”

          Hmmm, justifying visiting this site? If you come here to “get a kick” out of what Darrell posts, you’re not different from any of us in here. We all come from different walks Mr. DK. We all have our own beliefs, you aren’t the only person who considers themselves a fundy who frequents this site. I say welcome! You should stop be the forums and introduce yourself. The healing will come with time!

        14. *cheers & applause* That was a hilarious parody of Fundamentalism, DarrellK! :mrgreen:

          What? You were serious? 😯

          My apologies. And condolences.

        15. OH NO! I’VE BEEN OWNED! Time to bring out the grammar cannon!

          No, actually, what I’d like to pick on instead is your refusal to actually engage Darrell (the other Darrell)’s rebuttal to your uninformed, silly original post. Instead, you just went on a rant about how fundamentalism TOTALLY isn’t as bad as Darrell et al. say it is and we’re CLEARLY just bitter because we’re not cool enough to be fundies, etc. etc.

          Changing topic in the middle of a discussion is a pretty clear sign that you haven’t got a leg to stand on.

    2. Are Fundies allowed to call people slang terms for penises? Doesn’t that fall under “coruot communication”? Wouldn’t want to give us mindless clones an excuse to sin, now, would you?

    3. What does self-righteousness have to do with the topic at hand anyway?

      Oh, right, tu quoque.

    4. “You self-righteous prick.”
      Takes one to know one. Now let’s at recess near the monkey bars and settle this like real men.


  22. The best take on IFB missions that I remember is the South Park episode with Starving Marvin. The locals are starving and the only comfort that the missionaries extend is Bibles. Many IFB mssionaries I have known, believe it would be a from of social gospel to feed the hungry since the true priority is getting them to convert before they all die of hunger.

    Additionally, I read a study about religiosity across the world (can’t remember name of the study) and it showed a distinct relationship between poverty and poor education that makes people more open to any type of religious thought (mirrored by own experience bus calling and soul winning door to door). Fundamentalism (Hindu, Moslem or Christian) blossoms in poverty and ignorance.

  23. Had a friend re-tweet this, “@riddlegroup: Just passed local Bible school students panhandling for a missions trip @ the intersection standing beside the homeless guy doing the same.”

    Pretty sad.

    1. “I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.”

      Luke 18:9-14

  24. Translation: These ignorant savages are easily tricked into saying our “saving prayers” and out of the guilt and shame we preach serving us like we were their slave masters. Or is it that they being impoverished will say and do nearly anything to get a free meal or clothing from our great and benevolent white father.

  25. I still find the concept of “witnessing” abroad akin to spiritual genocide. Must…make…everyone in the world just like us! The desire of the fundamentalists to kill other cultures (metaphorically speaking of course!) is abhorrent.

    1. They certainly do a bad job of separating Christianity from Christendom. This doesn’t have to be a feature of evangelism! Compare, for example, the Orthodox missionaries to Alaska, who started by developing alphabets for local languages (thereby increasing local people’s access to knowledge and therefore power) and spent years figuring out the correct local metaphors for Biblical imagery, incidentally teaching useful skills such as how to produce more food on land. The point was to find a way to preach the Gospel that would make sense to the audience.

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