It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

Evangelizing the Desperate

page: 1
3
<<   2 >>

log in

join
share:

posted on Jun, 3 2009 @ 06:25 PM
link   
Something that has always struck me as totally inappropriate and exploitative are Christian Missionaries who Evangelize the desperately needy...those who have lost everything and have nowhere to go and would commit to any religion just to get some food, clothes or safety.

A particularly disgusting example can be found in this Video about North Korean refugees who cross the border to China and have the choice to either get abused and raped by Chinese gansters, get sent back to North Korea by Chinese Police (and get tortured in NK Prison Camps) or accept the Bible and Church. Admittedly the Christians are a huge progress to alternative...but do check out their faces while they are being evangelized...they`d be willing to buy into anything so that they are not sent back and shot.



An even more extreme example of this can be found in parts of Africa where many Africans say "If you want food and clothing, become a Christian!" or "I only joined the church so that I could survive".This journalistic masterpiece of a book in particular educated me on how Missionaries of various religions and sects descend upon the desperate and war-torn to gain followers:



I understand that it is a Christians mission and obligation to help the suffering and to provide relief. And I applaud that! But does this have to involve a sales-pitch? Is it possible to help the suffering without trying to convert them at the same time?

And is it because Religion has become unpopular in many parts of America and Europe that thousands of different denominations, sects, cults and religions now have to gather flock in less happy regions?




posted on Jun, 3 2009 @ 06:30 PM
link   
reply to post by Skyfloating
 


Yes, an absolutely pathetic display; just shows that they get more members of their flock by duress, than anything.



posted on Jun, 3 2009 @ 06:36 PM
link   
reply to post by Skyfloating
 



An even more extreme example of this can be found in parts of Africa where many Africans say "If you want food and clothing, become a Christian!" or "I only joined the church so that I could survive".


Don't confuse the "Health and wealthers" with Christians. While some may be Christian, many do what they do to make a buck and they know they're taking advantage of people. Just like televangelists. It angers me just as much as you.

Any Christian that uses "tricky words" and persuasive speech or "buying" someones allegiance isn't doing the right thing. In one of Paul's epistles, 1 Corinthians I think, he even says that's not the way to win converts. Simply present the Gospel and let the Lord do the work.

I remember when I lived in Hungary, I was talking to a homeless woman about Jesus. All I did was tell her the Gospel, I refused to take advantage of her poverty so that I could "gain another one for my team". Besides, "tricking" someone to become of Christian doesn't benefit anyone. Especially the church because the person may not be genuine in their decision, accept the label, do stuff "in the name of Christ", which in turn gives you a black eye so to speak.

[edit on 6/3/2009 by octotom]



posted on Jun, 3 2009 @ 07:13 PM
link   
unfortunately nothings free in this world. sounds logical though, help the most at risk people you can and show them there are people in this world who do care about their welfare. I suppose if anyone else gave a damn about these people they wouldn't need help in the first place right? I sure as hell don't see any atheist groups sending people into the Congo and to Darfur to help these human beings get the food, education, clothes, medications and the other minor luxuries people here in the U.S.A. take for granted everyday. If it wasn't for faith based charities a lot more people that you described would die every day. I'll star and flag because I do respect your opinion and I hate the money ministers just as much as anybody, but I find it hard to see your logic. I would rather see these charities or outreach programs benefit the people who need it. Anyone who spends even a few seconds of their life trying to help people in need gets my thumbs up. I know a Morman who went to Brazil on a mission and like you posted he went with his buddy or whatever and would talk to prostitutes and try to help them, why I asked him. Simply put he clearly told me that prostitutes usually have children and those are the ones we are trying to help. By trying to get the women to change their lifestyles they are trying to pave the way for a better life for the children. I may not agree with his beliefs but I respect him for all the people he has tried to make a difference for. I guess I just see this one as half full



posted on Jun, 3 2009 @ 07:39 PM
link   
reply to post by Skyfloating
 



I see your point but I think they are thinking of this passage.


Matthew 25:34-40 34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 for I was ahungered, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: 36 naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. 37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee ahungered, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? 38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? 39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? 40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

If not that passage then certainly they are trying to fulfill the great commission.

And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen. (Matthew 28:18-20)



posted on Jun, 3 2009 @ 08:25 PM
link   

Originally posted by Skyfloating
But does this have to involve a sales-pitch? Is it possible to help the suffering without trying to convert them at the same time?


No, it doesn't. This is evidenced by the many outreach programs run by various Christian organizations that don't evangelize simultaneous to offering assistance.

If any organizations labeled as 'Christian' refuse to offer assistance if the recipient is not interested in being proselytized to, their actions (or lack thereof) are despicable.

Eric



[edit on 3-6-2009 by EricD]



posted on Jun, 3 2009 @ 09:55 PM
link   
I don't know, but as a Christian myself, I'm not sure if that's right.

Jesus himself didn't actually talked about the gospel to every man and woman he healed. There's actually an instance he cured a blind man(or a can't walk, I can't remember clearly) but what I remember clearly, this man never saw Jesus come to heal him. Then Jesus quickly tried to blend in with the crowd after healing him so this man "never knew what healed him"!!


I think what Jesus maybe trying to demonstrate in that instance that words alone won't do the job, sometimes, simply helping people out works, even if you say nothing! I can't help but also say, sometimes even Atheist UN volunteer relief workers can bring people closer to God!! No offense to Atheists! And if you are actually a volunteer relief worker, you guys have the best job!!

[edit on 3-6-2009 by ahnggk]



posted on Jun, 4 2009 @ 05:11 AM
link   
I´m glad that even some Christians see this behavior as questionable.



posted on Jun, 4 2009 @ 08:17 AM
link   
I do like this one:



Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.


_____________________________________

Another thing that is a bit odd is that these North Koreans, for example, just came out of many decades of brainwashing of their juche-ideology and are starting to orient themselves. It can take many months to shake off the ideology. I think its a bit too early to introduce this stuff to them.



posted on Jun, 4 2009 @ 03:45 PM
link   
Not only do they go after the poor and desperate in developing countries but also people who are weakened and desperate in developed countries. It's as if organized religion preys upon people who have been mentally downtrodden and take advantage of it in order to get more followers.

Take drug addicts and alcoholics for example. I hear stories all the time from people claiming to be former addicts but they were 'saved' because they turned to christ. Many of them in my experience flock to the big megachurches that have a lot of political influence. Also, poorer people flock to these places becuase I think that religion offers them some hope that they can't achieve from regular society. In reality, I don't think a god or christ did anything to help these people, they just helped themselves, kind of like the characters did on the Wizard of Oz. The wizard wasn't magical at all, the lion tin man the scarecrow and dorothy realized that what they wanted was what they already had inside of them.

To me it seems that from the outside, these people really think that they are helping to save people but for most of the time, it's all about the money.

[edit on 4-6-2009 by Dances With Angels]



posted on Jun, 4 2009 @ 05:15 PM
link   
Sky, you know, generally I agree with you. You also know that there is not anyone who has been any more critical of the organized Abrahamic religions than I. However, I have to dissent somewhat with you on this one.

Now, I tend to be against the whole proselytizing thing. On that, I agree with you. However, I have to applaud these Christians, if that is indeed what they are, for showing some humanity.



posted on Jun, 4 2009 @ 05:31 PM
link   

Originally posted by SpeakerofTruth
However, I have to applaud these Christians, if that is indeed what they are, for showing some humanity.


I applaud the food, shelter and clothes they are providing. Great work. Its not that I have an issue with.



posted on Jun, 4 2009 @ 05:34 PM
link   
reply to post by Dances With Angels
 


Yeah...thats what Im concerned about...really concerned about. The desperately needy are the easiest to convert...to anything. The most obvious sales-tactic in History is to promise relief to someone who is suffering...be it with consumer products or beliefs.



posted on Jun, 4 2009 @ 06:12 PM
link   

Originally posted by Skyfloating
reply to post by Dances With Angels
 


Yeah...thats what Im concerned about...really concerned about. The desperately needy are the easiest to convert...to anything. The most obvious sales-tactic in History is to promise relief to someone who is suffering...be it with consumer products or beliefs.



I can't say for sure if the intentions are pure of these people. I know God knows their heart and intentions so it doesn't alarm me. You see God is having His work done regardless of their take on it. It should occur to you then that we are all either willing or unwilling servants of The Most High God.



posted on Jun, 4 2009 @ 10:19 PM
link   
reply to post by Skyfloating
 


Love and compassion are still love and compassion whether you call it Christianity or not. Get over it.



posted on Jun, 6 2009 @ 12:19 AM
link   
I was raised in one of those religions that knocks on your door Saturday morning.

The members who successfully brought in new members were given highest accolades, were the best members of the congregation. We were regularly told stories of people who we rescued from drug addiction, lives of crime, lives filled with all the particularly bad sins. (Of course, all the particularly bad sins have something to do with sex.) These stories were told to reinforce how much good our religion was doing, saving those from the horrors of God's wrath.

At some point, I started noticing that these were the only people that we were able to recruit to the religion. There was never an emotionally healthy person or regular Joe or anybody with any solid social or family structures behind them. It was only those that were at rock bottom that joined us.

As I began experiencing more of the 'real' world you are all familiar with, I began observing that our religion could really be considered a sales organization. We sold hope, community and eternity and the only people buying were those who had nothing.

This all sounds horrible and disgusting, but here comes the tricky part. I believe that everyone from the leadership of the organization to the disenfranchised believed that this was a good, positive thing. They weren't selling anything, they were saving lives, saving souls. And, you know, many of those new recruits did have better lives after converting.

So, I agree with the OP, selling your version of God is morally reprehensible, but, what of those few that benefit from it?



posted on Jun, 6 2009 @ 12:54 AM
link   
If they don't want to be a part of them, then what are they suppossed to do, force them to stay with them?






[edit on 6-6-2009 by Shawn B.]

[edit on 6-6-2009 by Shawn B.]



posted on Jun, 6 2009 @ 09:01 AM
link   
I found a few really interesting passages associated with the topic. Check this out.

Mark 9:38 38 And John answered him, saying, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name, and he followeth not us; and we forbade him, because he followeth not us.

Here John is telling Jesus that someone was using the name of Jesus to cast out devils. They told this person to stop because he was not following their group of people.

Mark 9:39-41 39 But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name, that can lightly speak evil of me. 40 For he that is not against us is on our part. 41 For whosoever shall give you a cup of water to drink in my name, because ye belong to Christ, verily I say unto you, he shall not lose his reward.

Here Jesus is saying to let him do what he is doing. If this guy is doing miracles in His name then this person knows the power that Jesus has and would not speak evil of Him.

He goes on to say that whoever gives you something in His name, because of the fact that this person believes you belong to Christ, would be rewarded anyway. Am I getting that right? Anyone?



posted on Jun, 6 2009 @ 10:04 AM
link   
There's nothing wrong with going to places where people suffer the most and helping them. For my taste, in that video, the guy who was handing out the new testament, could have waited a few weeks before doing that though. They just came freshly from years of brainwashing into their ideology. Give them some time to get to know the world before replacing it with another belief-system.



posted on Jun, 7 2009 @ 08:23 AM
link   

Originally posted by Skyfloating
They just came freshly from years of brainwashing into their ideology. Give them some time to get to know the world before replacing it with another belief-system.


Let's hope they drop a "belief-system" altogether and develop a real relationship with God. So that they are comforted and at peace with no strings attached.



new topics

top topics



 
3
<<   2 >>

log in

join