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This Monday will mark the sixth year in a row that we’ve been going to the Tournament of Roses Parade. Here are some highlights (and lowlifes) from the previous five years. (See the end of the post for this year’s planned adventure on January 2.)

Earlier this year Texas billionaire T. Boone Pickens and his wife Madeleine got some Gospel tracts from my daughters and their friend while riding on their wild Mustang float. (Read about it here.)

In 2010 “Righteous” Richard and myself got booed mercilessly by crowds of hundreds as we preached to the grandstands. (See below.)

In 2009 I reported on a story that wasn’t even shown on the major media outlets. Was it a hidden government agenda? An anti-Christian conspiracy… or worse? (Read about that here.)

Before that, in 2008 I preached for the very first time to the many standing outside the Porta-Potties until I was flushed in the face, so to speak. (Read about that here.)

And in 2007, the very first year we starting sharing our faith at this awesome event, George Lucas was the Grand Marshall…and a bogus Wookie almost ruined the parade! (Read about that here!)

What will happen this year at one of the largest parades in the world? Find out when you join the evangelism team at the 123rd Tournament of Roses Parade on Monday, January 2, 2012.

Details: Meet at Hope Chapel at 5AM to carpool or meet the team at the end of the Metro Rail Gold Line at the Sierra Madre Villa station at approximately 6:15AM. We will take the train back to the Allen St. station and walk down to the parade.

Contact me at PastorSteveAtHope@Yahoo.com or on Facebook for further info, or call me at 310-374-4673 x.121 and leave a message. I will get back to you.

There is a New Testament principle that God uses the foolish things of the world to shame the wise as part of His plan to bring glory to Himself.  I’m very happy to let you know that I  am indeed part of that plan…as the foolish thing, of course.

I’ve made nearly one hundred evangelistic videos to date, and for the most part, things have gone pretty well. I try to accurately share my faith by using the Law and the Gospel so that sinners will know how they will be held accountable on Judgment Day when they die (according to the Bible). I want to give them a fighting chance for Heaven.

I am not above putting videos up that make me look bad; I want others to see how things can sometimes go wrong in the evangelistic field. But in this video, “Why Christians Don’t Argue with Atheists,” things really went wrong. I had a yammering atheist named Ted (not unlike some of the atheists who contribute to this blog, just not as vulgar) who would not, could not—refused—to let me get a word in edge-wise. I stammered, hesitated, and lost my train-of-thought, all the while looking very confused at times—yet still got to declare the Gospel three times to my target audience: unbelievers, most of them atheists!

This is the video God chose to let go semi, kinda-viral at 112,000+ views* and counting.

And that’s just fine with me! Why? Since my target audience is made up of scoffers and mockers and the irreligious, they all get to hear the truth whether they believe it’s the truth or not. Everyone who watches this video will be held accountable. Everyone who sees this can never say ( if they end up in Hell, God forbid!), that they never had a chance to hear the Gospel. (For a further explanation on how this works, click here.)

So I’m proud of my 3,800 dislikes and the 6,600+ comments that deride me as being “the dumbest person I have ever seen” and “a verbatim Ray Comfort knock off” (these are the kinder comments).

As Spurgeon once wrote, “To be laughed at is no great hardship to me. I can delight in scoffs and jeers. Caricatures, lampoons, and slanders are my glory. But that you should turn from your own mercy, this is my sorrow. Spit on me, but, oh, repent! Laugh at me, but, oh, believe in my Master! Make my body as the dirt of the streets, but damn not your own souls!”

*The viewing total is based on the counter on the main YouTube page. after a search request. On my page the counter stopped at 98,088 a few weeks ago.

D. L. Moody died on this day in 1899

December 26th, 2011 | Posted by Steve Sanchez in HIStory - (1 Comments)

Famous evangelist D. L. Moody died on this day. It was said of him at his memorial service that by voice and pen a hundred million souls were touched by the Gospel through his ministry.

The details of his funeral can be found in this excellent work of 365 daily readings, The One Year Book of Christian History by E. Michael and Sharon Rusten.

Yet another reason why I try to ask the million dollar question every day, which is: “If you were to die today, would you go to Heaven or Hell?”

This is a really good question to ask especially of men…
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See more “Appointments” here.

These famous (and infamous) people died on Christmas Day:

  • Singer James Brown in 2006
  • Actor Denver Pyle in 1997
  • Actor/Singer Dean Martin in 1995
  • Awful Communist Romanian Dictator Nicolea Ceausescu in 1989
  • Artist Joan Miró in 1983
  • Actor Charlie Chaplin in 1977
  • Comedian W. C. Fields in 1946
  • Emperor of Japan Yoshihito in 1926
  • Pope Adrian I in 795

Am I a ghoul to post these columns every week? Maybe so, but I do have a redemptive purpose in mind. Click here to find out what it is.

Two Last Minute Gifts

December 22nd, 2011 | Posted by Steve Sanchez in Recomended - (3 Comments)

May I recommend two wonderful books that every evangelist Christian should have?

Okay, then. I will.

The first is SPURGEON: A New Biography by Arnold Dallimore.

This is a very readable, popular account written “to understand and present something of the inner man—Spurgeon in his praying, his sufferings and depressions, his weaknesses and his strengths; in his triumphs, humor, joys and incredible accomplishments.”

At only 250 pages it is meant to be read by the masses. You’ll laugh at the “Cigar Controversy” and be surprised at his views on drinking alcohol. You’ll cheer as he derided and denounced a popular book of myths that was written the man Charles Darwin. Most of all, you’ll marvel at how much work this man did for the Lord in such a short life.

The second book is The One Year Book of Christian History by E. Michael and Sharon Rusten.

This book provides 365 daily readings of Christian history, primarily focused on unsung evangelists, missionaries and martyrs of the past, as well as popular Christian workers in our current age. (I got my information on the bad marriages of John Wesley and William Carey from this book.)

It’s absolutely fascinating, enlightening and encouraging.

If it’s too late for Christmas, then get these two volumes for the New Year!

It’s a rare occasion indeed when our team doesn’t hit the streets, but for the next two weeks we have a limited schedule.

  • Nothing for Thursday at El Camino College (school’s out until February).
  • For the next two Fridays we will be going to LAX for our “Hour of Power” to meet and greet all those holiday travelers. Meet at Hope Chapel at 4:30pm to carpool.
  • Nothing on Saturday, Christmas Eve
  • Nothing on Saturday for New Year’s Eve

But on Monday,  January 2, it’s the Tournament of Roses Parade! (If you want to schedule yourself in advance, we’ll be meeting at Hope Chapel at 5am to carpool. More details next week.)

The atheists are in denial that there actually is a war. If there isn’t, how do you explain these:

In Palisades Park in Santa Monica, display boxes normally used for Christmas messages were almost all claimed by atheists. One read: “37 million Americans know MYTHS when they see them. What myths do you see?” In the display is a horned devil,  Santa Claus, a guy with a trident and…Jesus.

This billboard, according to the American Atheists website, is reserved for the Lincoln Tunnel.

An atheist group in Pitman, Pennsylvania, criticized a “Keep Christ in Christmas” banner over the street. A mayor in the Western part of that state barred the same group’s “there are no gods” banner from the town’s nativity display.

Yes, atheists are in denial about the War on Christmas—or they are just plain lying. Could it be both?

Rational Wiki defines this battle thusly: “The so-called “War on Xmas” is a right wing demagogic neologism referring to secular progressives’ attempts to keep the December solstice holiday shopping season culturally inclusive.

One person couldn’t take it anymore. When an atheist display was set up in front of the Leesburg, Va., courthouse depicting a skeleton in a Santa suit nailed to a cross, a lady took matters into her own hands, not unlike Gideon when he destroyed the idols that were set up in his town.

Was she correct in doing this?

“I think that it’s just extremely, extremely sad,” Leesburg council member Ken Reid was quoted as saying, “that somebody in this county would try to basically debase Christmas like this. This really crossed the line.”

OOPS! AN ATHEIST ATTACK BACKFIRED! CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT HOW!

North Korean dictator and anti-Christian who brutally tormented the people of his country and especially those of the faith, is dead after a heart attack.

Alternately known as  “supreme leader”, “Dear Leader”, “our Father”, “the General” and “Generalissimo”, he is now in the presence of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

If this man could come back from the dead, he’d be shouting to all unbelievers, “It is true! Jesus is Lord! Jesus is Lord!”

Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. (Romans 12:19)

The True Christian™

December 19th, 2011 | Posted by Steve Sanchez in Ev Tips/Tools - (20 Comments)

What do you do when you run into a person who has asked “Jesus into his heart” but still leads the life of Hitler?

How should a Christian respond to someone who says that they were born again at age three but their mug shot is on the post office wall?

How should a believer appropriately deal with a “cursing like a sailor” yet “Spirit-filled, sealed by the blood” follower who also owns a strip joint?

Simple. Don’t assume that they actually are believers.

Most likely they are false converts who believed that all they had to do was pray a “simple prayer” without any repentance. Or possibly, some well-intentioned disciples surrounded the poor pagan and “made” him “accept the Savior.” (more…)

Sudden Death: Heart Attacks

December 19th, 2011 | Posted by Steve Sanchez in SUDDEN DEATH! - (4 Comments)

CATANIA, Italy – Three Italian brothers suffered heart attacks on the same day, killing two of them.

The third was already in the hospital at the time, visiting his elderly mother, and was immediately treated by medics, the Corriere della Sera reported Tuesday. Read the rest here.

Famous atheist Christopher Hitchens has died of cancer.

None of us rejoice when an atheist, an enemy, or a friend dies without the Lord. It is indeed a sad day. God himself does not rejoice in the death of the wicked and no believer should either. Should we talk about it? Of course. Did Hitchens make a big deal of his atheism in life? Of course. Now we’ll talk about where that unbelief leads in his death.

As a warning.

“Say to them, As I live, declares the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live; turn back, turn back from your evil ways…” (Ezekiel 33:11)

This from ABC News: He achieved his greatest notoriety with the 2007 best-seller “God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything,” in which he dismissed faith as wish fulfillment and religion as “the main source of hatred in the world.”

With its publication, Hitchens became the public face of atheism. Critics assumed his cancer diagnosis, in 2010, would lead Hitchens to relent and embrace God. But he remained a proud non-believer to the very end, as he made clear in an early October 2011 speech at the annual Atheist Alliance of America convention in Houston, as he accepted the Freethinker of the Year Award.

His body gaunt from the ravages of cancer, Hitchens said, “We have the same job we always had: to say that there are no final solutions; there is no absolute truth; there is no supreme leader; there is no totalitarian solution that says if you would just give up your freedom of inquiry, if you would just give up, if you would simply abandon your critical faculties, the world of idiotic bliss can be yours.”

…at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.
(Philippians 2: 10-11)

Read the contrast of beliefs between he and his brother by clicking here.

It’s tradition! A re-post of our ever-popular Holiday tracts!

Just in time for the Season: The New and Improved Happy Holidays Tract! It’s seemingly innocuous and politically correct—until you read what’s on the inside.

We just printed over 10,000 of them at my church, Hope Chapel. We put them in the foyer in packs of ten for the whole congregation to pass out. (Click here for an older version of this tract.)

***WE ALSO HAVE A “FELIZ NAVIDAD!” TRACT FOR OUR SPANISH SPEAKING FRIENDS. CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE TRACTS!***

Download them for free then take them to a print shop and print them on green paper with red ink. There is blank space on the inside for you to stamp your own church name. Download it by clicking here. To see what else the tract says… (more…)

SplendidChristmas.com is a great site to present to those close to you because it provides a very subtle Christmas witness.

Send a family member to it and they will find Christmas carols with free Christmas song sheets, the story of the First Christmas, Christmas cookie recipes, crafts and Christmas music. Then there is a link for a gospel presentation, but it’s not called a Gospel presentation….

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Click here, take a look, and send the link to the one you love.

This is another wonderfully creative web effort from my friend Anna (Banana) Jackson, who with her husband Dale, run a great evangelistic web store called Evangelism Stuff!

This Thursday marks the last day we will be at El Camino College until February due to budget cuts. (Not because there is a cut to my evangelism budget, but because of college budget cuts.) Meet on the Library Lawn at 12:30.

Friday: The Hour of Power to the Redondo Beach Pier meets to carpool at the bottom of the steps at Hope Chapel at 4:30pm. In the next weeks they will be going to LAX to greet the holiday traffic.

Saturday: Redondo Beach Pier. Meet at Hope Chapel at noon at the top of the stairs to carpool.

This was a very pleasant conversation with a very friendly atheist (imagine that!) at the OCCUPY El Camino College demonstration who explains that he is all-inclusive when it comes to free expression. He felt the need to distance himself from the man who tried to stop us (“You are an opportunist! Get out of here!”) from handing out Gospel tracts at the OCCUPY protest on campus (see the video here).

As a gift for talking with me I gave him a free Atheist Bible.

Question: When is a Christian most like an atheist?

Answer: When that Christian is a liberal Christian.

I happened upon an article critical of my evangelism training ideas from a blog called “Confessions of a Former Conservative.” The writer took issue with my coaching of evangelists at a Christmas Parade. Here’s a sample of what we do:

One of the things that the Former Conservative hates is that we hand out tracts. This is what he wrote:

You see when I go to parades there is this long progression of people who wish to hand me pieces of paper advertising crude word deleted that I don’t care about. About 50% of these are related to a church or some kind of tract. The first thing I do when returning home from a parade is do a great purge of all the crude word deleted handed to me by random people, because I don’t want to take karate classes for 7 year olds nor do I want to attend the Sword of the Lord Pentecostal Bible Faith and Freedom Church.

The fact that you make your kids do this crude word deleted creeps me out, Steve. Why don’t you let your kids be kids and enjoy a Christmas parade like normal children would instead of making them go around handing out religious propaganda? Allow your kids to have a normal childhood. I have wonderful memories of everything surrounding the Christmas season as a child. Somehow I doubt your kids will have the same, because you’ve made Christmas parades about harassing strangers.

As I read his article, which is well-written, I smiled and shook my head. As a liberal Christian the writer has no belief in Hell, therefore, there is no urgency to get the Good News out because everyone ends up in Heaven.

When it came to our evangelists preaching the 10 Commandments to the spectators to show the nature of sin, Former Conservative would have none of it.

My how festive! You’re just like Linus in a Charlie Brown Christmas if Linus was a holier than thou expletive deleted instead of an adorable little child.

“You’re going to hell for being a filthy thief and that’s what the true meaning of Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown!”

Though he takes me to task for using rather unorthodox methods when evangelizing, the real bottom line of his criticism is that he thinks I don’t need to share my faith. It’s a waste of time. Why bother?

Again, when is a Christian most like an atheist?

“Have you no wish for others to be saved?
Then you are not saved yourself.

Be sure of that.”
—Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892)

Read his two part critical analysis of my evangelizing  by clicking here for part one, and here for part two. (Caution: Because of his liberal views about faith, you will find some PG-13 language in the articles.)

 

Sudden Death: Elevator

December 11th, 2011 | Posted by Steve Sanchez in SUDDEN DEATH! - (5 Comments)

LONG BEACH, Calif. — A Cal State Long Beach employee was crushed to death Wednesday in a horrific elevator accident in the university’s Foundation Building, authorities said.

Cal State Long Beach spokeswoman Toni Beron said the accident around 9 a.m. when authorities received a call for a woman trapped in an elevator on the third floor of a campus building. Read the rest here.

Normally, our Thursday afternoon excursions to El Camino College are fairly placid affairs. But today, I was surprised to hear a chanting, hollering mob protesting on the campus. What’s an evangelist—with a whole lot of Gospel tracts—to do?

I don’t know what you would do, but this is what I did with my Presidential Trillion Dollar Bills.

And this is what my friend Dr. Donnie did with his Giant Money!

This Saturday, Dec. 10, we will be traveling to Whittier to have a great time sharing our faith with the crowds. Meet at Hope Chapel at 7:30am to carpool. Here’s a photo from last year’s Whittier Parade.

Optional: Sun. Dec. 11: Heart of the Harbor Christmas Parade in Wilmington (On your own)