Part 1 described two cultic groups that have a history of sending teams to proselytize people at the Harvest Crusade in Anaheim, California. The Harvest Crusade is an annual Christian music and evangelism event.
Q&A: How do I prepare my teenagers as we head to the Harvest Crusade?
- Be excited. This is a wonderful event. The music and Greg Laurie’s presentation of the Gospel are always fantastic, year after year. My teenagers and I love it and some of our friends have gone forward and committed their lives to Christ.
- This is a great opportunity to discuss with your friends and teenagers the belief in salvation by faith alone, not works. Anyone who says that Jesus’ sacrifice was inadequate to pay fully for sin, and that you need follow the Old Testament law (Galatians 3:23-25), go door-to-door, worship on a certain day (Colossians 2:16-17), eat a special diet (Colossians 2:16-17), follow the leader’s rules in order to please God and achieve salvation, may possibly be teaching something wrong. Read Ephesians 2:8-9.
- This is an excellent opportunity to inoculate your friends and children by explaining what these groups really believe. Their literature often does not reveal their non-biblical beliefs. You can download some fact sheets on the Twelve Tribes and the Seventh-day Adventists on your iPad, mobile phone, or computer and print them out. Go to RosePublishing.com/Harvest
- Now is the perfect time to discuss what the Bible says about salvation. Frankly, our friends and teens cannot avoid cultic groups. People who promote a false gospel are everywhere: at gas stations, movie theaters, grocery stores, airports, festivals, college campuses, youth ministry conferences, cultural events, seminars, in short, anywhere you would go in normal life. (The Harvest Crusade isn’t the only Christian event that attracts these groups.)
- Find out what you as a Christian believe and why. To meet this need, Rose Publishing produced the “Christianity, Cults & Religions 6-session DVD-based Study” and a pamphlet that compare 21 religious groups side by side. These are excellent tools to help you know the essential beliefs of Christianity and sift through the most common world religions and cultic groups.
- Treat cultists with respect, but feel free to decline their literature. You just politely say, “No, thank you,” and keep walking. Don’t be surprised if they offer you cookies or other gifts and invite you to come learn more about them.
- The literature they hand out will not tell about their strange beliefs. Most of their handouts are designed to make them appear loving, wholesome and devoutly Christian. They are very appealing. Until you actually join their group they won’t usually tell you their true beliefs.
- If you are a mature Christian, you might want to ask how they became part of the group. At an event like this, listening and then sharing your own testimony is often better than trying to win a battle over Bible verses. Having a polite conversation where you truly listen and try to understand their personal journey is sufficient. Thank them for telling you their story when you walk away. You don’t need to pressure them to leave the group. Let the Holy Spirit convict them in the right way at the right time. This is not your job. John 16:8 says: “When he [the Holy Spirit] comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment…”
- Have a great time singing a praising God. Our family will be there–my kids are now college students. They wouldn’t miss it…and we love to bring friends.
- Come by and say “Hello!” I’ll be in the KKLA broadcast booth at Anaheim Stadium, Friday, August 6, 4:30-5:00 pm on the Frank Pastore show (KKLA, Los Angeles, 99.5 FM).
. –Gretchen Goldsmith