are Altar calls even biblical?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Yeshua1, Apr 15, 2013.

  1. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1
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    as it sems that the invitation to receive christ is really not found in the bible, as the common situation appears that as the teaching/preaching/witnessing was done, it was the HS Himself who prompted the sinner to responfd to Jesus, taht it was not appealing to emotions or to how great the speaker was, but was totally the work of God?
     
  2. preachinjesus

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    They are not in the Bible.

    That doesn't mean they aren't effective, proper, or useful for church services today.
     
  3. salzer mtn

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    I think the churches that practice altar calls are people that have been taught to pray for their own salvation un- aided by counselors. Charles G. Finney was one of the first to use a altar which he called a mourners bench but his motive was to get a quick response out of someone. I think today the altar is a symbol of prayer to the churches that use it. In the last few day's i have been trying to find examples and scriptures that would prove sinners do pray or call on the Lord for salvation. In Luke 18:9 it gives the account of the Publican and the Pharisee that went up to the Temple to pray. The publican did call upon God to be merciful to him, a sinner. In Act's 8:22 Peter tells Simon the sorcer to pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee. To the churches that do practice praying together as a congregation, the altar can be like a bench the elderly person can lean on or set on. The minus side to altars is they have become a fixture in a lot of churches that they will not give up. To them if you throw the altar out you have thrown God out of the church or you have thrown prayer out of the church. They are also being abused in altar calls, the preacher will point toward the altar and say, come to Christ and be saved our come to the old fashion altar and be saved, leading many to believe that just coming to a altar is what saves or they must come to a altar to be saved.
     
    #3 salzer mtn, Apr 15, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 15, 2013
  4. HisWitness

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    not only are alter calls NOT in the bible,but the practices of preachers by getting people to say the so called sinners prayer is NOT in the bible.
    Men have come up with all kinds of devices to practice that are NOT in the bible in todays era :tear::tear::tear:
     
  5. Earth Wind and Fire

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    Agreed....:thumbs:
     
  6. Tom Butler

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    Of course, there is no altar in a Baptist church. Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice, rendering an altar unnecessary any longer.

    I know, it's used as a figure of speech sometimes. And it always seems to be down at the front where the preacher is.

    And sometimes, that's the problem if we're not careful. We send a message that the place to be saved is down there. To be saved, you have to go there.

    I'm not totally against invitations. But the language we use to call people to faith in the Lord Jesus needs to be clear and unequivocal.

    I cringe whenever I hear someone give their testimony and say "I walked the aisle." Actually, I cringe whenever I hear anyone say they did anything, beyond repenting of their sins and trusting Christ and him alone for salvation.

    That said, I don't have a problem with the preaching exhorting someone to publicly declare their faith in Jesus.
     
  7. salzer mtn

    salzer mtn
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    Go south and you will find plenty of baptist churches that have altars.
     
  8. Yeshua1

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    believe that the Lord can and does do his saving work during the preaching/teaching of the word, that he opens herats/minds of thiose he has chosen to get saved by that word that day, but also think we have to be very sure they realise just what it means to receive chrsit, to commit unto him to get saved!
     
  9. Salty

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    and neither are altar calls prohibited in the Bible.

    what we need to ensure is that the counselor is actually counseling and not a "here sign this card"

    If a person is coming forward to be saved, normally, it would be best to take them to a separate room for a one-on-one in order that the individual will be able to give full attention. If the individual came with a friend - by all means have the friend join you. ( also - women with women / men with men)

    If you try to counsel at the "altar" first you have to talk about the 19th stanza of "Just As I Am" and the individual may think he is holding up the close of the service if he has too many questions.

    Just my thoughts
    of course I am always right:laugh::smilewinkgrin:
     
  10. preachinjesus

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    Yeah, that's what I was trying to say...did it not get across properly. (That is completely possible.)

    Completely agree! :thumbsup:

    We don't do come forward invitations but we do have a connection center that is right out the back doors of our worship center. We staff it with trained volunteers and our ministers. This is vital for us.
     
  11. Tom Butler

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    I'm a Southerner by birth and by raising. I've been going to Baptist churches since 1945. Without exception, what they call an altar is actually the Lord's Supper table.

    I grew up in West Tennessee, so maybe I didn't go far enough south to see those Baptist altars.
     
  12. Jedi Knight

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    Principal wise didn't Joshua draw a line for a response? Joshua 24:15 If it is disagreeable in your sight to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves today whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served which were beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” I see no problem with it as long as it doesn't become mechanical.
     
  13. Revmitchell

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    Well see now you have a problem. The gospel must be preached by man so it appears that salvation is not totally the work of God by your definition. Now in the preaching why would you not compel someone to come to Christ?
     
  14. DFG

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    Yes we do Alter Calls. We have several counselors standing by to speak with the new believer and even on transfer of membership. We are Southern Baptist. Either I missed something which is likely but is this inferring that one cannot save themselves with prayer and speaking with a counselor then either our Pastor at the end for conformation from the congregation. It's more likely that the Pastor presents them the following Sunday as we go very in depth. as counselors.
     
  15. Earth Wind and Fire

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    Ok ...Zola gratia and man....that's the gist of it right?
     
  16. Revmitchell

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    You tell me....man has to preach the gospel so does doing that make man an agent of salvation?
     
  17. Earth Wind and Fire

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    Does he now...than how is that Zola gratia
     
  18. Revmitchell

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    Do you disagree?
     
  19. Revmitchell

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    Rom 10:13 For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."
    Rom 10:14 How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching?

    Rom 10:17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.
     
  20. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
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    So then how are infants who die before they hear the word saved
     

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