panelarrow

Celebrating 3 Years of Recovery Today!

| 0 comments

Yes. That’s right. I’ve been a Christian for nearly 18 years and a pastor for over 10, yet 3 years ago I became sober—minded!

On July 31st of 2005, Ray Comfort taught “Hell’s Best Kept Secret” at our church.
null And after hearing it—and applying it—I felt that I was born again, again.

On that night he also gave me my first pack of…
null …Million Dollar bill Gospel tracts!

I now celebrate 3 years of being free from proclaiming a man-centered, God-loves-you-and-has-a-wonderful-plan-for-your-life Gospel.

Things will never be the same.

(Read the very first E-vangie Tale that I wrote after I met Ray Comfort and was enlightened to this better way of sharing my faith..)

0 Comments

  1. Hey its been about five months for me. But it has changed everything.

  2. I think I posted this in the wrong spot, but I couldn’t figure it out! I am in my 4th week of the Evangelism Class. I can honestly say it is very difficult to remember to hand out the Million dollar bills! I think it says something about my priorities. I always remember them as I am walking out of a store, etc. I want to tell you a story that really hit home for me. I was home in Colorado 3 weeks ago for my parents celebration of their 80th birthdays. We had a huge family celebration with over 80 people in attendance. As you can imagine there were lots of conversations going on. I have talked to my parents on and off in the past about Jesus. I was raised Catholic and they are still both active members of the Church. This time with all the activity, etc, there never seemed to be a good time to talk about eternal things like heaven and hell. I returned to California without really talking to them about the Law, etc. I left a couple of the million dollar bills on the table on my way out the door. One week ago my father had a severe heart attack, where by the grace of God he survived. He has never had an attack before that he knew of, but the tests showed that he had had an attack before. His heart was severely damaged by this previous attack but he never realized he had it. You can imagine the guilt I felt but I thanked God for giving me another chance to talk to him. This weekend I talked to them both and had a chance to talk to my father alone. I took him through the different questions and think that he really understands. He still isn’t ready to bend the knee but at least I was able to give him the gospel again. We never know how long we will have our loved ones with us. Treasure every moment.

  3. Praise God! That’s an awesome testimony! 7 years for me (previously false convert for over 20 years)

  4. Hi Steve 🙂
    Born again again? When will the next new realization of how you aren’t performing well enough happen?
    And I was wondering, perhaps you have an opinion on this:
    The apostles performed miracles for the people they preached to, which validated the claims they made. Why do you suppose miracles are so rare/non-existant today, and why are evangelists so much less effective today?
    A regulary quoted verse in christian churches is “go and make disciples”, and “the workers are few but the harvest is plenty”. Well, were the apostles not also told “do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift” (of the Holy Spirit). How is it that we feel that “go and make disciples” speaks to all Christians (and not just the disciples Jesus was literally speaking to), and yet “wait for the gift” does not apply to us (No, only the disciples Jesus was literally speaking to at the time). I’m NOT suggesting that a Christian should not wittness whenever possible. But to expect a lay christian to perform as the apostles did when they are not gifted as such is worse than ineffective. Televangelists, false teachers, “Buisness Churches”, we have enough people botching up the gospel, we don’t need the Ungifted+Unlearned to put the finishing touches on the already hardened. But wait, it’s the thought that counts right?

  5. Haha, I just read Chris Potts’ response. That’s very nice, may his parents spend eternity in Heaven when they receive Christ.
    But it brings up another question for you, Steve. How is it that Christians are taught to “work out your faith with fear and trembling”, as you so well illustrated with your post the other day of the “false convert newsman”. And yet, the dying who have only days or moments left to live can simply utter words of forgiveness and no one questions it twice. Could it be that EVERY SINGLE person who was about to die and asked to receive Christ DID so, and it just happens to be that if those people HAD lived to see “scandals in the church” and “hard times”, they would have persevered with all the rest of those whoe are “saved”?
    And, why is it that you rejoice with each new convert?, And say to yourself, “this was fruitfull work, I’m glad this person was saved from hell”. And then moments or years later re-neg their salvation when they (the majority) fail to persevere in the faith. Is the rejoicing in error, or is the work done in error?

  6. Miracles? Well, what about the conversion of a sinner? The repentance from a life of sin to a life of…life!

  7. To Real or Fake: Since you chose to ask the questions rhetorically, thereby ensuring a platform for your criticisms, I won’t answer all of your queries at this time.

    If you ask them again, and truly want my answers I’d be happy to answer them.

    Thanks for your thoughts, though! 🙂

  8. Awww, no response to any of the questions? I wasn’t looking for solid answers. I would love to hear even your personal opinions. And who says I intend to criticise? 😉
    And yes Mr. Perry, the conversion from a life of sin is indeed a miracle! But meaningless to those who don’t believe..

  9. Real or Fake: All criticisms welcomed, btw… Here are a few answers with more to follow (keep tuning in!).

    Born again again? When will the next new realization of how you aren’t performing well enough happen?

    I never felt that I wasn’t performing well enough—it was never about performance—it’s just I had my eyes opened by something I’d never heard before, the use of the Law in a Gospel presentation. At that point, I started to experience nearly everything the first disciples experienced in the first century. Read the entries of this blog after July 31, 2005.

    Q: The apostles performed miracles for the people they preached to, which validated the claims they made. Why do you suppose miracles are so rare/non-existant today, and why are evangelists so much less effective today?

    Good questions. I believe that the miracles confirmed that the Messiah had arrived, as demonstrated through signs and wonders (the canon of Scripture was not available yet). Today the Word has permeated every point of western society, signs and wonders are not necessary to prove the validity of Christ.

    The reason why evangelists are so ineffective today, is because they do not use the Law in Gospel proclamation, don’t warn of an impending judgment, nor talk about Hell. Most presentations give a man-centered Gospel promising peace, prosperity, health, etc.

    The only reason one should come to Christ is to flee the wrath to come. All the other stuff that may accompany salvation (healings, wealth, marriage, etc.), is gravy!

    More to come…

  10. More for RealorFake:

    Q: “Go and make disciples…”

    Yes. Even if “we have enough people botching up the gospel, we don’t need the Ungifted+Unlearned to put the finishing touches on the already hardened…”

    God can use all things, and His Word never returns empty. Paul himself even said that even if they preach the gospel for profit, out of wrong motives, the Gospel is still being preached!

    That’s cool for me, too.

  11. Real or fake: If you’d like me to respond further, let me know.

  12. Steve, you’ve been reading too much MacArthur…. ; )

  13. Hey Steve. Thanks for the responses! I pretty much agree with what you said. I hate the gospel of prosperity. And, who DOESN’T believe that the miracles performed were for the sake of validating Christs claims? 😉
    I found it interesting when you said “Today the Word has permeated every point of western society, signs and wonders are not necessary to prove the validity of Christ.” I agree that the word has permeated every point of western society.. but to what extent, would you say? I have never encountered an american older than 10 who had not at least “heard of” Jesus.. There’s something I’d like to discuss/hear your opinion on that topic, but I’m too lazy to write about it right now. 🙁 Later for sure!
    Also, regarding “God can use all things, and His Word never returns empty. Paul himself even said that even if they preach the gospel for profit, out of wrong motives, the Gospel is still being preached!”, once again, I couldn’t agree more. Yes, God CAN use ALL things, but what does He PREFER to use, that’s what I would LOVE to know.
    Do you suppose Steve, that with all these idiots (I too, am an idiot compared to others) preaching crummy renditions of the gospel, the passing out of cheezy tracts, the differences in denominations and doctrines in christian churches, and scandals, and etc., do suppose that God is still in control and has everything right where He wants it to be?? I wonder?..

  14. Is conversion from a life of sin meaningless to those who do not believe? Really? If a man sees, say, a drunkard brought to sobriety, that tells him nothing about the God he does not yet know? Or what about a Pharisee, a persecutor of Christians, brought to faith and leadership?

    I gently disagree, my friend.

    And what does He prefer to use? Flawed vessels like myself, if that former Pharisee be trusted.

  15. Happy Birthday Birthday, Steve!!

    I met Ray five years ago when he and Kirk came to preach HBKS at another church than the one I attend. By then I had already started sharing my faith one-to-one on a regular basis for one year and then Ray’s presentation knocked my socks off! (I have since bought a new pair.)

    It changed my way of evangelizing one to one as it was very effective. BUT, I never had the courage to open air preach until I came across and started following the grand tales of Steve Sanchez at E-vangie Tales in August of last year. THAT is what helped me cross the line and step up to the…well…stepstool. And now, like Steve and many others, I can’t shut up! And I won’t!

    So I thank God for Ray, I thank God for Steve, I thank God for Lawman, I thank God for Todd ( the freakishly tall guy on WOTM Radio, not the freakishly small guy on god-TV) and other sources of inspiration without whom I would be a very quiet fish.

  16. To compare your adoption of a particular style of evanglism to your spiritual rebirth is a disturbing hyperbole. The fact is,you Steve did not come to Christ to “Flee the wrath that is to come”. You came to Christ in headlong flight from this present darkness from the chaos and the meaninglessness of life without truth or grace.
    Meaning and purpose in life, a race to run, these are the immediate rewards of repentance and submission. These bring joy, which only comes with a sense of purpose and can only be maintained through a life of obedience. This is God’s great plan for all of his children. It is wonderful! And the truth of it is wired into our DNA by our creator, thus it is a powerful and honest evangelical approach. God does love me and he does have a wonderful plan for my life. I live it every day.
    It seems to me that fear is the more likely motivation to create false converts. I think of the cntrast between the free Greeks who would run into battle led by their chosen King and the Persian slave army who would fight for fear of the punishment they wold receive otherwise.
    I run into the battle a joyous volunteer.
    in Christ, the solid rock
    Brian

  17. Hyperbole or not, I once was blind to my responsibility of preaching the Gospel by using the Law first… but now I see!

    And no looking back to that “God loves you” rot.

    BTW, how many times is God’s love used as a motivation to accept the Gospel in the Book of Acts?

    Check out this article by John Gerstner, R.C. Sproul’s mentor, on whether God loves the sinner:
    http://www.the-highway.com/lovesinner_Gerstner.html

  18. I’m sure this thread is forgotten, but I never said use God’s love as a motivation to accept the Gospel of Peace.
    I said that a life of meaning and purpose (and escape from the meaninglessness and despair that every lost soul lives in) in knowing and obeying God.
    Every human craves a purposeful (driven) life. The evangelist has that to offer.
    But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
    amen

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked *.