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Can you tell me your street preaching experience?

Discussion in 'Requests for Christian Advice' started by DavidMil, Jan 13, 2018.

  1. dgiharris

    dgiharris Newbie

    +5,166
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    The above describes my experiences with Street Preachers.

    Every single Street Preacher I've seen preaches Fire and Brimstone: Doom and Gloom, telling everyone they are all going to burn in hell. They all come across as sanctimonious and narcissistic and negative.

    Instead of doom and gloom, it would be better to preach HELP and HOPE. If you are going to preach in the streets, then by golly be positive, be helpful, be enlightening, radiate the light of god and peace...

    that's my two cents

    FWIW, I am far from an expert on the subject... I've never done it and probably never will...
     
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  2. A71

    A71 Well-Known Member

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    I love street ministries. Several times I have been stopped and it is always a time to receive prayer, and can lead to finding a new church.
    I think it is one of the best things the Church can do, and I love seeing people getting prayed for, it is very good for them because often we need healing and help when in crisis, and it shows a God who loves and cares for people and goes out to find them like the good shepherd.
     
  3. A71

    A71 Well-Known Member

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    Or none even. At least the animals and hills will rejoice.
    But even sometimes we are simply ploughing the land, and then a seed can be planted later.
     
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  4. A71

    A71 Well-Known Member

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    Was his cigarette question really negative? It lead you to Ken, who established your Faith
     
  5. Strong in Him

    Strong in Him I can do all things through Christ Supporter

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    Although I am a preacher, I have never preached on the streets - nor would I, unless I was convinced the Lord was calling me to do this, and/or had a passion for it.
    If I WERE to do something on the streets it would almost certainly be through Creative arts - Gospel magic or puppetry. I have considered that possibility but don't yet feel good, or confident, enough to do this.

    But as for just standing and preaching the Gospel to passers by; no. I think there's a different set of gifts involved. First of all, it is open air preaching; you'd either need a good, loud voice or be able to take a microphone with you. In our town (city actually), there's not only the noise and traffic to cope with, but nearby buskers, another street preacher and other individuals/groups that may be doing something. You have to be prepared for hecklers, insults or just being ignored, as well as bad weather. I think you'd probably have to get permission from the authorities - though if your church regularly preach on the streets, this may not be a problem. Then there's the whole question of someone wanting to become a Christian - do you take time out from preaching to answer their questions, pray with them, and help them to feel accepted and wanted, or do you just say "great! Say this prayer after me", give them a list of churches they might like to try, and get back to preaching? If you were part of a team of 4 or 5, no problem; one person could preach while others could use their gifts in giving pastoral care/follow up.

    Preaching is hard even when your audience is static and sympathetic. If they're not, and you have doubts about whether you are being called to proclaim the word in this way, I'd say, don't. Some people may sense if a preacher is nervous/inadequate/ineffective and make fun of them. Others may simply fail to hear the Gospel because the preacher is worried about his/her nerves and unsure of what they are doing.

    And personally, if any church said to me "you HAVE to ..... to belong here"; I'd leave.
     
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  6. Catherineanne

    Catherineanne Well-Known Member

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    I really wouldn't start with 'Do you have a minute for Jesus?' unless your name really is Jesus.

    Really, really not.

    And if you feel that street preaching is not for you then say so. We all have different gifts, and this one really is NOT for everyone.
     
  7. 2Timothy2:15

    2Timothy2:15 Well-Known Member

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    For those who say open air or street preaching is not biblical really need to go back and read their bibles.

    Is Open Air/Street Preaching Biblical? - Sermon Index

    Proverbs 1:20-21 declares, “Wisdom shouts in the street, She lifts her voice in the square; At the head of the noisy streets she cries out; At the entrance of the gates in the city she utters her sayings”

    I would like to point out a few Old Testament prophets who clearly seem to have been open air/street preachers:

    Isaiah was an open air/street preacher.
    In Isaiah 58:1 the Lord says to Isaiah, “Cry aloud; do not hold back; lift up your voice like a trumpet; declare to my people their transgression, to the house of Jacob their sins.”

    Jeremiah was an open air/street preacher.
    In Jeremiah 11:6-7 the Lord says to Jeremiah, “Proclaim all these words in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem; hear the words of this covenant and do them.”

    Jonah was an open air/street preacher.
    In Jonah 3:1-4 we read: “Now the word of the LORD came to Jonah the second time, saying, "Arise, go to Nineveh the great city and proclaim to it the proclamation which I am going to tell you." So Jonah arose and went to Nineveh according to the word of the LORD. Now Nineveh was an exceedingly great city, a three days' walk. Then Jonah began to go through the city one day's walk; and he cried out and said, "Yet forty days and Nineveh will be overthrown." Then the people of Nineveh believed in God; and they called a fast and put on sackcloth from the greatest to the least of them.”

    Now let’s look at some examples from the New Testament.
    John the Baptist was an open air/street preacher.
    Matthew 3:1-2 says, “Now in those days John the Baptist came, preaching in the wilderness of Judea, saying, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand."

    The Lord Jesus Christ Himself was the greatest open air/street preacher.
    Matthew 5:1 tells us, “When Jesus saw the crowds, He went up on the mountain; and after He sat down, His disciples came to Him. He opened His mouth and began to teach them…..” And He went on to preach that famous Sermon on the Mount. And there are many other accounts of our Lord preaching to crowds in the outdoors.

    The Twelve Apostles were open air/street preachers.
    Luke 9:1,6 says, “And He called the twelve together, and gave them power and authority over all the demons and to heal diseases….Departing, they began going throughout the villages, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere.”

    Philip the evangelist was an open air/street preacher.
    Acts 8:5-8 declares, “Philip went down to the city of Samaria and began proclaiming Christ to them. The crowds with one accord were giving attention to what was said by Philip, as they heard and saw the signs which he was performing. For in the case of many who had unclean spirits, they were coming out of them shouting with a loud voice; and many who had been paralyzed and lame were healed. So there was much rejoicing in that city.”

    At this point I would like for us to look briefly at church history, beginning with the protestant reformation. Charles Spurgeon said, “Where would the reformation have been if its great preachers had confined themselves to churches and cathedrals? How would the common people have become indoctrinated with the Gospel had it not for those far-wandering evangelists….and those daring innovators who found a pulpit on every heap of stones, and an audience chamber in every open space near the abodes of men?”

    I found an article online which gave a brief history of street preaching, as I am doing here. The article states, “the earliest protestant reformers necessarily had to be out door preachers, since… the churches were at the hands of the papacy (Catholic pope and bishops).

    Now let’s consider for a moment the First Great Awakening, which took place in the mid 1700s. The article I just mentioned states, “After the reformation other great movements were started by street preachers. The Methodist Church, co-founded by George Whitfield and John Wesley, is an example of this period. These two were Anglicans, but being banned from speaking in churches since they were not licensed, they took to ‘field preaching’, boldly proclaiming God’s Word to large crowd in streets and markets. They traveled throughout England and the American colonies and were instrumental in the Great Awakening… The Methodist Church was started by street preachers.”

    And there are many more examples, even in modern times, of how God has greatly used this method of open air/street preaching. Sadly to say, the Church of today, to a great degree, has forgotten and forsaken this proven biblical method of evangelism. And yet we do see today that God is stirring up many of his people and raising them up to perform this awesome task of publicly proclaiming His glorious, everlasting gospel. May He continue to stir us up and send us out, and bring a glorious revival in these last days. Of course we also need to seek Him diligently in prayer and in His Word, otherwise our preaching will be in the flesh (our own ability and strength) and futile.

    Are There Examples of Street Preaching in the Bible? | CARM.org


    There are many examples of street preaching in the Bible. However, some have argued against many of the following examples, saying that what we see in Scripture is not the same kind of street preaching most commonly seen on the streets today. But their arguments are not valid. Street preaching is simply the public reading of Scripture, proclamation of the law, and/or preaching of the gospel in an outdoor setting.

    While this is not an exhaustive representation, here are some biblical examples of street preachers and street preaching:

    • Noah was a “herald of righteousness” (2 Peter 2:5).
    • Solomon addressed the entire nation of Israel “with a loud voice” (1 Kings 8:54-56).
    • Ezra called the people of Israel to repentance as they sat in the “open square” (Ezra 10:9-14).
    • Ezra read the law of God and explained it to the people of Israel while standing before them (Nehemiah 8:1-8).
    • Jeremiah stood at the gate of the Lord’s House and “proclaimed” the very words of God (Jeremiah 7:1-3).
    • Jonah preached on the streets of Nineveh (Jonah 3:1-5).
    • The prophets of old were hated by the people, because they heralded the word of God at the city gates (Isaiah 5:29; Amos 5:10).
    • The first street preacher, the first to herald the good news in the open-air, was John the Baptist (Matthew 3:1-2; Mark 1:4; Luke 3:3).
    • Jesus sat atop a hill and preached the greatest sermon ever preached in the open-air -- the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7).
    • Jesus’s disciples preached on the streets in many villages (Luke 9:5-7).
    • Peter preached in the open-air at Solomon’s Portico, after healing the lame beggar (Acts 3:11-26).
    • Philip preached the gospel to large crowds on the streets of the city of Samaria (Acts 8:6-8).
    • Paul preached the gospel to the entire city of Antioch. He was viciously heckled, yet all those whom God had appointed to be saved believed the gospel (Acts 13:44-52).
    • Apollos boldly and publicly refuted the Jews and proclaimed Christ Jesus in Achaia (Acts 18:27-28).
    • Paul stood before the judiciary of Athens, atop of Mars Hill, and preached to the men of Athens in the open-air (Acts 17:22-34).
    The Scriptures are rich with examples of street preaching. Street preaching is clearly a biblical practice, and those who engage in it follow in the footsteps of great men of the faith and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
     
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  8. Apologetic_Warrior

    Apologetic_Warrior Pilgrim

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    I've never attempted to preach in the streets, and cannot recall witnessing anyone preach in the streets. I have witnessed a few times people holding signs with religious messages, but would not equivocate it with street preaching. In my honest opinion, very few are equipped for such a task, including myself. I am of the opinion that in most instances witnessing and evangelizing is more effective in a one or two to one scenario, and it is better to spend a bit of time getting to know the person, try to establish a relationship before bringing down the hammer on their conscience, and be prepared for whatever consequences result from it. Personally I prefer to evangelize at a distance through the internet in various ways for obvious reasons, not to mention I have a family to consider, and my health issues, maybe I am full of excuses, but the Spirit does take hold of the steering wheel at various times and gives boldness in place of fears.
     
  9. LoricaLady

    LoricaLady YHWH's Supporter

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    Any time the Word goes out it may bless someone, but I am wondering if it is usually far more effective if combined with charitable actions. Someone mentioned skid row people. There are wayside houses and such. I would think that while you are showing the love of the Father in tangible ways, with food, clothes, soap and so on, that the message could be a lot more effective. There are so many homeless these days who need to see love in action as well as hear about it.

    The Bible says that when people are in need, don't just say "I'll pray for you" but give them physical helps.
     
  10. LoricaLady

    LoricaLady YHWH's Supporter

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    P.S. And if someone wanted to minister to the homeless or others who badly need help, I bet they could find a lot of people happy to provide some old clothing items, soap, pantry items, and maybe some stamps, paper and envelopes, for writing to loved ones. Just helping them write to loved ones, providing the stamps, can, in fact, be huge to many homeless.
     
  11. Ronald

    Ronald Exhortations Supporter

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    You can try it, especially if you do not know what your spiritual gifts are. It is a gift, though evangelical churches push it on everyone. Ephesians 4:11 Teaches us that God calls some to be preachers, teachers and evangelists. I tried it, and I do not have that gift. I've also seen those who memorize a script, them go, forcing themselves to do something with an unfruitful result. Some Pastors and teachers sometimes choose the wrong ministry. I know one Associate Pastor who was just enthusiastic about serving and so got a masters degree to be a Pastor. He used to go out to college campuses, the beaches and attend certain events to street preach. We were both members of a mega-church in Southern California. I asked him this question: After several years of street preaching every week, how many souls have you touched who now attend our church? He said none. These were local events and Hermosa Beach was right down the street. No fruit. I saw what the problem was in his approach but it was just more that he didn't have the gift. It was too forced, scripted and he used Hell fire fear tactics - which shouldn't be your opening message. Our Pastor used to say, "Start with grace and end with grace." Don't beat unbelievers over the head with your bible either. Faith comes by the Word, but relate to them where they are and try to show how the Bible principals are relative to our time.
    Our Senior Pastor encouraged us, to try any and all ministries, do something and if that doesn't work, do something else. These churches are very ministry oriented and they do grow when gifted people are in the right ministries.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2018
  12. 2Timothy2:15

    2Timothy2:15 Well-Known Member

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    I have street preached several times. The Lord has used it to save people right then and there as well, to his glory. I agree, it is not for everyone as far as open air preaching goes. However it has a time and a place and is absolutely biblical. The thing is when I did street preach I did not do it trying to get people to come to my church per say. Just to sow seeds and to see people get saved. No other agenda. I think that is the difference in some cases. People can smell when you are trying to get them to come to your church and join your organization so to speak. When you preach the gospel plainly and clearly it is amazing what the Lord will do in the hearts of those who hear. One thing I never ever did was call people names like some groups do.

    Nowadays I have been just witnessing one on one more than anything else but that really has to do with a personal place the Lord has in me at the moment :)
     
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  13. MyGivenNameIsKeith

    MyGivenNameIsKeith Well-Known Member

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    I remember earlier this year I stood out in front of church on Halloween. I offered small bible tracts with games on them, and we were offering hot chocolate. We knew people would do trick or treating, so we took that as opportunity to witness and fellowship.
    A few years ago, I went into a gas station and happened to strike up a conversation with the cashier about Jesus. I don't remember what exactly had prompted me to do so, as it wasn't the purpose I had gone in for. At the end of it, I gave her my first Bible. The very book that I accepted Jesus Christ with. I figured if I couldn't do it of my own witness, I would let him do it with the witness of the book itself. To this day I don't know what happened to her. I only trust that it was the right thing to do and the Lord kept working on her.
    Some people preach with the signs, "The End is Near", and that sort.
    Some others do so by feeding homeless people hot meals, and visiting people who are sick.
    There are many different administrations, different ministries. God has a specific calling for you. One that is based upon the abilities and gifts that he gave you. Pray about it, he will guide you.
    If you feel street preaching is somehow beneath you, recall Jesus washed his disciples feet. A task that was designated to the lowliest servant. Be the lowliest servant in your heart, and he will lift you up. We do not seek our own glory but his.
    If you feel preaching eternal life to someone will make you look bad, and are worried that somehow people will hold it against you, then somehow you got something twisted. Telling someone about eternal life is the EPITOME OF LOVE.
    You care about what you will look like for a few years, by some nobody who doesn't even care about you here on earth???
    When your Father in heaven, the creator of heaven and earth, the stars, universe, and all that is in it, knows you by name, and knows the very number of hairs on your head and loves you enough to die for you.
    Speaking from experience, when you take the bold walk to talk about the Lord to people who do know you, it speaks volumes about you and about the Lord. That's the kind of stuff that turns people's hearts to God.
    Strong men follow the Lord.
    2 Timothy 1:7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

    John 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
    John 3:20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.
    John 3:21 But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.
     
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  14. T-seven

    T-seven New Member

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    Well I've been down that road - standing outside one of the busiest shopping stores you can imagine - in the heart of the suburb I lived in - and literally thousands of people flowing by ... and me and the Snr Evangelist of my church singing while he strummed away on his guitar.
    I literally knew hundreds of people there, and was very well known by them too.
    And here I was a new goody two shoes Christian on the street corner.
    Like the words in a Pink Floyd song- "your lips move but I cant hear what you're saying" - that was me for a while.
    Was I embarrassed ? Absolutely Yes.
    Did I love Jesus ? Absolutely Yes.
    Did I feel guilty if I didn't do it ? Absolutely Yes.
    Will I do it now again ? Definitely not.

    I have over the years come to realize that not everybody has that gift - yes i believe it's a gift - to stand out in a public place and preach or sing.
    I do not have that gift, and I'm not going to feel guilty because I don't.
    I have other spiritual gifts and they work fine.
    Paul said that one sows, another waters, and another
    reaps.
    We all have our calling, our gifting and if preaching
    out in public is not yours then don't stress, find where you're supposed to be and do it with all your strength.

    Lastly do not allow yourself to be manipulated by some guilt trip well meaning people put on you.

    I went out in public and sang and even preached and prayed devils out buildings - another story for another time - I eventually got over my embarrassment.
    But that is not my calling, maybe its yours.
     
  15. JoeP222w

    JoeP222w Well-Known Member

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    No, of course not and no where does the Bible tell you molest strangers. But that has nothing to do with proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ.

    Do you have a fear of man or a fear of God?

    Mark 8:38 For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him will the Son of Man also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”


    Matthew 28:18-20 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. (19) Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, (20) teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
     
  16. JoeP222w

    JoeP222w Well-Known Member

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    In the USA, if it is a public street, a city cannot block proclamation of the gospel of Jesus Christ. That would be a violation of the 1st Amendment. However, a city can ban the use of electronic amplification. City ordinances never override the Constitution.
     
  17. JoeP222w

    JoeP222w Well-Known Member

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    He has:

    Matthew 28:18-20 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. (19) Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, (20) teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”




    John 15:18-19 “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. (19) If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.
     
  18. mindlight

    mindlight See in the dark Supporter

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    In my twenties I did a lot of this all over Europe and even in Israel. We used to pull people in with some kind of drama or music. You would get a crowd and then someone would stand up and give a short message about why we were there and the rest of us would get into one on ones with the people who were interested. Not sure I was that good at the street preaching at that age but it was great fun and people did get saved through it. Once I preached on Trafalgar Square. We had the stage there. Our choir did their thing and brought in the crowds and then I gave a small message with short snappy soundbites about hope. Hope in Jesus, do not hope in money sex or power. Hope in Jesus! Still remember the basic message :)

    Also done a lot of door knocking in Muslim areas and even walked into a few mosques to share the gospel. I have met Muslim evangelists a number of times on the street. It is a good tactic to engage as many of these as possible to stop them talking to others. They think they have had a brilliant conversation and they all get to hear the gospel rather than plague less certain people.

    For many years I have not done any street preaching. But then last Summer the associate pastor forgot our keys for the church so we were locked out and I was up to preach. So I preached in the open air in front of the church. People said they really liked the feeling of openness and with the brilliant sunshine and as a one off I think it safe to say it had some value. But in the long run I think the streets are more about sowing seeds and triggering people to think about God. It is in peoples fellowship with other Christians over the long run that people find a lasting relationship with God also. There are too many people who had a street conversion went to church a few times and then never went back. Undiscipled Christians are the plague of the Western world and the shallowness and worldliness of these people has never been fully challenged in long term relationships with other Christians.
     
  19. MyGivenNameIsKeith

    MyGivenNameIsKeith Well-Known Member

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    Also, if I may add an addendum to my earlier response. A lot of people have had some sort of sales experience throughout their lives. Some sort of randomly going up to a stranger for some reason or another, whether it be asking for directions, asking a woman for a date or to buy her a drink, or calling people on the phone soliciting sales, going to door to door, upselling at the store you work at, greeting people at work you don't know. Most everyone has had the experience. Except most do it for their own purposes. Doing God's work, street preaching, whatever you want to call it, doesn't necessarily entail standing outside weathering the elements preaching to cars going by at 40 miles per hour or hounding passersby. Actively preaching God wherever you go qualifies. If you want something that is productive and will get people to stop of their own freewill (free will love it)...try handing out hot chocolate on a cold day, handing out free soup, free bottles of water, along with some tracts, and see how many people stick around and chat. Believe me it works. It is easier to ask if someone wants water as opposed to hey do you believe in God? Ease into it. Remember how you learned the word. Milk first...then meat. The principle is aptly applied here too. Don't preach the whole bible in the first minute you meet someone. Be like...I don't know.....a normal person?? lol. Hey would you like a bottle of water? It's hot out. Umm...sure.. Here is a paper with it. Oh what's this? It's about Jesus and what he did...do you go to church? I haven't been in awhile. What caused you to stop going?....etc..etc...easy peasy.
     
  20. thesunisout

    thesunisout growing in grace Supporter

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    There is good and bad street preaching. Like everything else concerning our Lord, the devil tries to amplify the bad and minimize the good in our minds. Of course it is good to preach the gospel, in whatever forum the Lord leads you to do it.

    I have done some limited street witnessing, but never street preaching. I'm open to it because I know the Holy Spirit would give me the right words. I would love to get into it and into street witnessing with a partner. I feel like I am wasting my life not telling anyone about the Lord.
     
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