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Orange County Reporter Versus Ray Comfort

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The Orange County Register reported on the street performers who barely co-exist on Saturday afternoons at the Huntington Beach Pier. Here’s a sample of what this paper thinks of the evangelists who preach there every week:

Lucky John Domingue, who hammers nails up his nose as part of his act, says the performers have worked out a system where they take turns to avoid having everyone going at once. John said he tried to get Christian evangelist Ray Comfort to join the rotation, but to no avail.

“The performers aren’t causing problems. We’re organized,” Domingue said. “The Christians set up directly in front of us.”

Comfort, who co-heads a Christian evangelist ministry based in Bellflower called The Way of The Master, said he didn’t participate in the rotation because of a disagreement about allotted time per performer.

The New Zealand native offers spectators money from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. on almost every Saturday at the plaza if they answer a few questions. Comfort ends up yelling at them and calling them liars before he asks them to come to God.

“We get 50 people maybe, 100 people if someone is going to beat me up,” said Comfort who uses in-your-face tactics. “But that hasn’t happened in Huntington Beach.” (Read the rest of the story and see the photos here.)

Read how Huntington Beach bicycle taxi drivers got their revenge here!

5 Comments

  1. “I don’t do as well when all of this is going on,” said Cathy Wickersham, who sells paintings at her booth. “We agree with their message but the way they do it is too provocative and upsetting. You can feel the tension.”

    Please allow me to translate…

    “We agree with their message but the way they do it is too convicting. You can feel your conscience seer right through your heart.”

    Surely if she did “agree with their message” she would not be saying anything against it.

    Keep up the good fight, Ray et al !

  2. “I don’t do as well when all of this is going on,” said Cathy Wickersham, who sells paintings at her booth. “We agree with their message but the way they do it is too provocative and upsetting. You can feel the tension.”

    Please allow me to translate…

    “We agree with their message but the way they do it is too convicting. You can feel your conscience seer right through your heart.”

    Surely if she did “agree with their message” she would not be saying anything against it.

    See you just dont get it….ignorant condescending fools you guys are. thats another reason why people are running away from organized religion. its NOT THE MESSAGE its the delivery. there are many more effective ways to make the point. that guy is just a fool. all ya have to do is read the other blogs on this subject and look at the comments from christian scholars. not many have positive things to say about your buddy ray comfort

  3. Well, thanks for your input, Joe.

    Can you cite any examples of credible scholars and bloggers who are against Ray?

  4. I’ve not been “comfortable” with Ray Comforts tactic for a long time. The reason is, that’s exacly what it is. A tactic. How about befriending people and understanding them as individuals, relating to them where you can, and be Jesus to them.

    Is this a numbers game? is it how many people you ran through your routine or is there some genuine care for individuals that you talk to? It takes time.

    This is just my thinking on it all. I am no super hero but I just think we Christians need to stop thinking we HAVE to preach to people and just get close to a few that God puts in your path. Also, if you have a gift that can take you to a certain people and establish a relationship with them, go there and do it but do it from the heart and be real.

    I am just begining to play my songs on the street. It is a way for me to attract people who will hear the light in my songs. I have already begun relationships with a few and I am recognized as a Christian but welcomed. One guy see’s me comin and greets me with “Hey Preacher”.

    What fellowship does light have with darkness? Light exposes darkness, yes, but Jesus didn’t just blast everyone. He blasted primarily the religious leaders that were hardened. He befriended the dirty and broken. That’s what I’m talkin bout.

    Peace,
    rob Chiavelli

  5. I’m not from California, and I’ve never heard Ray Comfort speak. But I do know what it’s like to feel extremely ambivalent about the manner in which some of my fellow Christians preach the gospel when they engage in “street ministry”.

    For instance, here in Chicago, there’s an elderly black guy who preaches regularly on State Street in front of the Old Navy store. He talks about God’s love (which is good), but then he says things for which there’s little or no scriptural justification. For example, he preaches that smokers and gays won’t make it into heaven.

    Smoking is indisputably unwise (regardless of whether one is a believer or not), and I think that it says something negative about a person’s spiritual maturity when that person is addicted to cigarettes (or other foreign substances). God can deliver people from such addictions. But I know of no scripture which states that abstinence from smoking is a prerequisite for salvation!

    Even though it isn’t politically correct in many circles, I believe that homosexuality is a sin. I don’t buy the idea that people lack the ability to control their sexual desires. I think that people involved in the gay lifestyle are in serious need of spiritual deliverance. But we’re all sinners in one way or another. It isn’t our good deeds (or abstinence from bad deeds) which will save us from hell. It’s our faith in the redemptive power of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

    Consequently, when I hear the aforementioned street preacher, I’m a bit embarrassed. It makes me want to say something, to the passersbys who are getting a very bad impression of what it means to be a Christian, to counteract the effects of his preaching.

    I do believe that there are times when Christians need to be very blunt in speaking out against sin, and not just when speaking with or to hypocritical religious leaders. However, preachers are wasting their time unless their messages are tempered with a full appreciation of God’s grace and love. Messages which ooze with contempt for unbelievers do far more harm than good.

    I know from experience that it’s possible to take a stand against immorality without being a jerk about it. There’s a way to firmly promote righteousness without coming across as self-righteous. I’m not saying it’s easy, but it can be done.

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