Today was the monthly “First Friday” in Knoxville, Tennessee. This is a monthly event held on the first Friday of every month. Everything “artsy” happens in the downtown area of Knoxville.  Nothing wrong with the Arts and there are many artists here that are talented. However, there are some that take their gift and it is used in a very non-Christian way.  This is an open opportunity to share the Gospel and hand out tracts.

Several of the Million Dollar Bill money tracts, Fellowship Tract League tracts, and a Wretched “Todd Friel”  Gospel show on DVD  was handed out. The DVD went to some Jr. High skater boys. The DVD is geared towards a the school and college age crowd.

However, I never go out to do Street Evangelism without praying first. When Evangelism in the open, always pray and ask for the power of the Holy Spirit in leading you and protecting you. I go out in my Hawaii t-shirt and shorts. I am not one to do the suit and tie. Especially with hot temperatures.  As far as materials, I pack my satchel/murse with Christian materials.  In my satchel are my pocket New Testament Bible(Holman Standard edition), Gospel tracts, New Testament Bibles(Holman Christian Standard: This is the Southern Baptist translation also known as the Hard Core Southern Baptist….hence the same first letters in each word as Holman Christian Standard Bible.), Greg Laurie’s New Believer pocket guide, hand gel…yes you come across some of the homeless and you will be thankful later, and a couple of Spanish tracts.

I walk all around the downtown area and greet people as they are handed a gospel tract. Other times, I lay a tract down by a table or chair. Most people are gracious in taking the material. You will always encounter the meanies, but even more of a reason to pray for those that reject the Gospel message. They are rejecting Jesus and not you so never take it personal. One encounter the guy refuses the tract and asks me, “Are you a Jehovah Witness?” I replied, “Nope!” He still refused the Gospel.

To get to the atmosphere of the area. When First Friday occurs, pretty much everything “Anti-Bible/Jesus/Christian” comes out in FULL FORCE.  Yet:

1 John 4:4 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)

“You are from God, little children, and you have conquered them, because the One who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.”

Most all the vendors selling their wares and services(example: Yoga and Palm Reading) have New Age, Unitarian, Open Homosexuality, Buddhist, Eastern Mysticism, Catholicism, Socialist, Communist, Witchcraft, Pagan, and the list goes continues of views opposite of Biblical Christianity. It is weird feelings of demonic oppression I face during this monthly event. You enter the devils playground, expect demonic attack in all manners.  Most of the attacks were mental and emotional. Other attacks were from vendors that know me and I am a deterrent to their pagan and demonic businesses.

What ruffles my feathers is when the vendors or people downtown combo parts of the Christian faith and mix it with paganism, yoga, and New age mumbo jumbo. That is very sacrilegious and when you read in the Word how in both the Old and New Testaments how God is displeased when people mix the religious practices of pagan nations with his standards.

Here is a passage from God’s Word about his views on witchcraft and paganism….which have their roots in drug use.

Nahum 3:3-5 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)

3 Charging horseman,
flashing sword,
shining spear;
heaps of slain,
mounds of corpses,
dead bodies without end —
they stumble over their dead.

4 Because of the continual prostitution of the prostitute,
the attractive mistress of sorcery,
who betrays nations by her prostitution
and clans by her witchcraft,

5 I am against you —
the declaration of the Lord of Hosts.
I will lift your skirts over your face
and display your nakedness to nations,
your shame to kingdoms.

Many of the New Age girls dress very loosely to expose almost all their chest to attract guys to their booths or the ritual dances they do using a hypnotic drum beat(Drum Circles). The drum circles have lots of  intentions of drawing crowds with very loud beats to drown out any potential street preacher proclaiming God’s Word.

After about an hour of  passing out tracts, I thanked the Lord for the opportunity of Evangelism and proceeded home.

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Philemon 1:5-7 (New International Version)

“…because I hear about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints. 6I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ. 7Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints.”

After the Way of the Master class with Tim Weakly, I took the million dollar bills given by Tim.  I gave some to a gas station attendant, fast food employees, individuals, and college students. The following  is a snippet of the interactions during the handing out of the million dollar tract.

When you are by yourself and walking along, you have less than three seconds for the exchange. Some of the places downtown I gave some away was Market Square, the escalator by the theater(I went up and down it several times and gave the bill to people going the opposite way of me.), people standing in movie ticket line, one fun incident was on the UT strip(college bar and restaurant area). At a stop light a big long black limo was carrying a group of college kids. They hollered at me while I walking. This was my Holy Spirit cue to approach the limo and handed about a dozen bills to the occupants in the limo. On the opposite corner was one of the public transit buses. The driver had her window rolled down and I told her, “Here is a tip for all you hard work.” She gave a smile and a laugh. This bus driver needed a good laugh especially dealing with some of the crazies riding her bus. On my way back to my car, I came upon a small group of college kids and all of them took a bill.

Saving souls at a the Collective Soul concert at the Tennessee Theater: Yes, as people were waiting to get in the Tennessee Theater, I started handing out the Million Dollar tracts.  Question is for the attendees: Who is going to “collect their soul”?

I only came across one bill thrown on the ground.(after handing out about 75 bill tracks.) Of course, a few refuse to take a bill. Remember Mark Cahill says, “A  no rejection is a win-win situation.” No matter what occurs, if done in biblical love is still obeying the Great Commission. Your reward in Heaven will be great.

Luke 6:23 (New Living Translation)

When that happens, be happy! Yes, leap for joy! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, their ancestors treated the ancient prophets that same way.”

Matthew 5:12 (New Living Translation)

Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted in the same way.”

I do recommend if you go out street witnessing, take someone with you. Now if you cannot get anyone to go with you, then use wisdom and discernment.  Always pray before and after street witnessing. Remember to be led by the Holy Spirit and not in your strength. (Zech. 4:6).

Towards the latter part of the evening,  I came upon a black gospel music performance in Market Square. When one of the organizers asked what I was doing. He offered and I accepted prayer over me for boldness in witnessing. This guy’s name was Robert.(not ironic, but a God-sent conformation.) He was an on-fire brother in Christ. Covered in tattoos and looked like a bouncer. God definitely used him to help and encourage me. Many times in street witnessing, you need an encourager. It was much needed for the rest of the night.  He wanted info about my church. I gave him a business card and the group of people with him each got a million dollar tract. Hopefully, the bill tracts will encourage them to boldly share Jesus with people.