Introduction To The Scandal
Of Modern Evangelism
This is not a kiss and tell book about Benny Hinn and other high profile evangelists. Its about Evangelical influence in America; why the conservative movement is a mile wide, but only an inch deep; why the majority of Americans think theyre Christian while they act like heathen; why 88% of the children raised in Evangelical homes leave church at the age of 18, never to return; why the divorce rate of Evangelical church members is virtually the same as the general population.1; why true revival is impossible without a radical reformation of evangelism theology and methods. In short, this book is about the single most important issue of this or any time; whether Evangelicals are fulfilling the Great Commision or just fooling themselves.
Billy Graham and other ministers have said (behind the scenes) that only a portion of those who go forward for altar calls are born again. But modern evangelism theology dictates that we tell everyone theyre saved. This regrettable practice has resulted in the greatest number of spurious conversions in history. While most pastors focus on the results of Gnostic Christianity, this book identifies the cause.
A lesson from Rome
Ridiculous Numbers Getting Saved
Ive sat through more than a few missionary presentations where I was expected to believe that natives in a village that never heard the Gospel before all got saved after a single sermon. How different this is from the experience of missionaries before the 20th century. Adoniram Judson, Americas first foreign missionary to India, worked for 7 years before gaining his first covert. David Livingstone, missionary to Africa (Dr. Livingstone, I presume) worked 4 years before seeing a salvation. William Carey, British missionary to India worked 7 years before he saw his first convert. Even today, when native missionaries labour for the lost in untouched Indian villages, one or two conversions the first year is considered very good. But send an American evangelist to that same village with the Jesus film and everyone gets saved! This book was written for and about Evangelicals, who believe the only way a person can become a Christian is by being born again. I work extensively with teenagers. Once a month or so, Ill witness an altar call. I know the kids who go forward. They go forward because theyre expected to. They go forward because their friends do. They go forward to get an emotional release. A very small percentage go forward because the Holy Spirit moves upon them, and theyre born again. This last category is the only one that should be told theyre saved. But if youve been around evangelicals more than a few weeks, you know that everyone who comes to the altar and repeats a formula salvation prayer is told hes saved. How did we get to this point? This book traces the reasons why the altar call and formula salvation prayers are the most common conversion method employed by Evangelical pastors and evangelists. It explains why over 60% of Americans think they are Christian by virtue of having said a salvation prayer, while less than 10% exhibit any evidence of being saved.
1 Southern Baptist Council 2002 Annual Meeting