1. Welcome to Baptist Board, a friendly forum to discuss the Baptist Faith in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to all the features that our community has to offer.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon and God Bless!

Altar Calls

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by VoiceInTheWilderness, Jan 26, 2003.

  1. C.S. Murphy

    C.S. Murphy New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2002
    Messages:
    2,302
    Likes Received:
    0
    As has been the case with a few other topics lately some here insist on an either/or stance on something. When someone says that some preachers may have used an alter call in a manner that seemed to bring glory to themselves I agree, when someone says that a preacher may use this time to guilt someone then I say maybe so. But to say that because of this we should throwout the invitation I must say NO!. Some of the points from those against the alter call are as follows. #1 I can get right with God in the pew and I don't have to go down. You are correct unless the HS tells you that you need to go down, at that point it is mandatory that you go down.#2 Some people feel going down equals a changed heart. I cannot answer for everyone but if the preacher is relaying this message then he is doing a poor job.#3 The preacher is using this as a guilt trip and as a way to glorify himself. We must understand that our Pastor is called of God and we can expect him to speak as led by the HS if you are in a church where you don't feel the Pastor is doing so then you should take action. Sitting in the pew while distrusting the pastor is not healthy. #4 I got renewed in the pew so why go down. Christianity is not just about us, your submission as shown by bowing at the front for prayer may give someone the courage they need to take a step of faith. That is about all the points I could think of but maybe the biggest problem to me is that in my opinion the invitation is part of our Baptist heritage and I take offense with those who want to remove it. If we discontinued every thing about Church that someone may handle poorly then we would soon have to stop having church services at all and surely we can all agree that that would be pretty silly.
    Murph
     
  2. C.S. Murphy

    C.S. Murphy New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2002
    Messages:
    2,302
    Likes Received:
    0
    PTW what in the world are you talking about with this quote. Am I to understand you to mean that the altercall in which I surrendered to Christ was not led of the Spirit. If so you must be saying that I or anyone else who accepted Christ at an alter call are not really saved because the Bible says no one may come except drawn by the spirit.Please explain.
    Murph
     
  3. Thankful

    Thankful <img src=/BettyE.gif>

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2002
    Messages:
    8,430
    Likes Received:
    0
    Amen, Brother Murph. Good Post. I only quoted part of it to save space, but I agree with all of it.

    THank you for saying what I would like to have said. [​IMG]
     
  4. Daniel David

    Daniel David New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Messages:
    5,316
    Likes Received:
    0
    People justify all kinds of practices with this line of thinking. I know you don't subscribe to everything out there that is done in the name of salvation. Many do though. Your view on salvation will determine how you view things.

    People who are more Arminian tend to agree with you.

    People who believe God is sovereign will disagree because the elect will not "miss" salvation.
     
  5. Daniel David

    Daniel David New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Messages:
    5,316
    Likes Received:
    0
    Murph, did you read the article I posted? It includes all kinds of points that I did not because I hoped people would do further study on their own.

    There is NO Scriptural support or example of an altar call. There is no Scriptural support for the Holy Spirit causing people to change their location so that they might be saved.

    Murph, I in no way question your salvation. If you got saved the moment you went forward, then that just demonstrates that God is sovereign over circumstances as well. God used a donkey to reach Balaam. God used frogs to convince a Pharoah. God used a trumpet, candle, and jar to destroy an army. God used a rod to split a sea. God used a stone to bring down a warrior. God used 2 fish and 5 loaves to feed over 5,000.

    Just because God can do something doesn't give us the right to try to copy it. No one will start a prophet school for donkeys anytime soon. [​IMG]

    As preachers, we do what is commanded in Scripture. We may never do anything that manipulates people (2 Cor. 2:1-5). In my view, altar calls are manipulative.

    It has nothing to do with Baptists. I will never be anything else. My DNA reads B-a-p-t-i-s-t. The altar call idea started with a guy named Charles Finney. He believed in moral reformation and other bizarre ideas. He saw the altar call as a method of people committing themselves to something with the hope that they actually change. If that is not a substitute for salvation, tell me what is. Do a search on Finney and you will see what I mean.

    Bottom line is this: I reject it because it violates 1 Cor. 2:1-5.
     
  6. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2000
    Messages:
    29,842
    Likes Received:
    243
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Amen, PTW. We need to be sure that no one feels a personal attack when what we are really doing is discussing this system.

    But feel free to attack Finney all you'd like! That man is the father of some of the worst doctrine and practice that still plagues my church today. :eek:
     
  7. C.S. Murphy

    C.S. Murphy New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2002
    Messages:
    2,302
    Likes Received:
    0
    ------------------------------------------------

    It seems some can not get far away from the same old Cal/Arm fight. [​IMG]
    Murph
     
  8. I Am Blessed 24

    I Am Blessed 24 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2003
    Messages:
    44,448
    Likes Received:
    1
    I got saved at home, by myself, on a Saturday night...January 24, 1976, 11:15 P.M. PTL!

    I couldn't wait to go to church the next day and go to the front of the church and tell everyone what had happened to me! (Isn't that what Jesus told the woman at the well to do?) I would have taken a full-page ad out in the newspaper had I the means to do it! [​IMG]

    My husband and my four children came to church when I got baptized. Within three weeks, everyone in my family was saved! [​IMG]

    My husband got saved at home when the Pastor came to visit. My youngest daughter got saved while sitting on the Pastor's lap when we went to visit him.

    My other three children got saved during an 'altar call' at church.

    We are still all serving the Lord, 27 years later; one of my sons is the Pastor of a church and the other three children are married to Christians and faithfully serving God and raising Godly families.

    Believe me, I know the Holy Spirt can convict anyplace he wants to and it doesn't have to be at an altar. (I am proof of that) I still thank God for the old-fashioned 'altar call', because people get saved there too.

    Some churches today have done away with a lot of the old traditions. Let's be careful we don't 'throw the baby out with the bath water'.

    [​IMG]
    Sue
     
  9. Thankful

    Thankful <img src=/BettyE.gif>

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2002
    Messages:
    8,430
    Likes Received:
    0
    ------------------------------------------------

    It seems some can not get far away from the same old Cal/Arm fight. [​IMG]
    Murph [/QB]</font>[/QUOTE]My husband has to explain the difference over and over again to me. [​IMG]

    I don't label myself as either. I am a Christian and a Southern Baptist. I do believe that God is Sovereign, but I don't think that makes me calvinistic ;)
     
  10. TheOliveBranch

    TheOliveBranch New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Messages:
    1,597
    Likes Received:
    0
    I look at the alter call as a guage as to how effective the preaching was that day. [​IMG]

    I have always been in churches that have had alter calls. Over the years, I can't say I agree with them. I remember aftr I had shortly started going to church, I went forward for an alter call. I prayed with one of the women of the church. I felt broken, was in tears, but the reason was for my walk with Christ and how I was not furvent enough for him. I later found out that my Pastor thought I had finally gotten saved.

    There can be so much "second guessing" going on. All stare at the front, hoping that one will get something right, or another will get saved. But, it seems to create a gossip center after the service. I don't care for others trying to guess what I went forward for, nor do I look up to see who went forward. It may not always be like this, but I would rather talk to the Lord where He hears me. If I need the pastor, I can see him later. But there are those that would rather go forward (I can't say "go down". seems to be an oxymoron [​IMG] ).
     
  11. MissAbbyIFBaptist

    MissAbbyIFBaptist <img src=/3374.jpg>

    Joined:
    May 3, 2002
    Messages:
    2,567
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yes, my church has them. Every service. For anyone who needs to be saved,get right, orpray for a need, join the church, get baptized, or anything else.
    I'm very thankful for these times. I usualy can't get through a church service without crying, or feeling a definate need to pray. I get convicted, I get burdened, and when I do, I want to talk to God THEN! I don't want to wait!
    The time for invitation has never been a time to drag an unsaved person to the alter. If someone gets saved, it must be their choice, and the last thing you need to do is emberris them infront of a lot of people!
    If you ever feel you need to go down when the invitation is given, you should. Fi the Holy Spirit is convicting you, listen! Don't grieve Him.
    I'm just so thankful for a time, when I can gather around the alter with the people I love most, and have that precious communication with my Saviour!
    It stil works. recently a young man my dad's age got saved, and boy did he get changed. He brought his wife and five kids, and started coming every chance he got. Last night when he gave his testimony, I was reminded that God still saves souls!
    ~Abby
     
  12. Thankful

    Thankful <img src=/BettyE.gif>

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2002
    Messages:
    8,430
    Likes Received:
    0
    THank you, Abby, for sharing this with us.
     
  13. All about Grace

    All about Grace New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2002
    Messages:
    1,680
    Likes Received:
    0
    I remember an IFB church of which I was a part (before my deliverance from the bondage ;) ) that had an altar call every service. As in many of these type churches, there was one young man who felt the need to "go forward" every service to pray about something. I will never forget the speculations that surfaced when the pastor preached an entire sermon on homosexuality and guess what? You got it -- ????? went to the altar to pray. He was a friend of mine and I can assure you that he received a lot of good-hearted teasing over his need to pray at the altar after this particular sermon [​IMG]
     
  14. Tentmaker

    Tentmaker <img src=/tentmaker.gif>
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2002
    Messages:
    329
    Likes Received:
    0
    Faith:
    Baptist
  15. Yes, our church has them and I am glad we do.
    Preach, I do not think altar calls or invitations though they are used by some wrongfully should be discarded. Some have the wrong kind of music in their churches but we dont band music in the church just because others use it in the wrong way.
     
  16. Frogman

    Frogman <img src="http://www.churches.net/churches/fubc/Fr

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2001
    Messages:
    5,492
    Likes Received:
    0
    ...but sometimes the Holy Spirit convicts them during the service.

    I prefer the above method. When I began preaching people (used to hearing altar calls at the end of a sermon) informed me that I did not use these, and that I was failing to give people the opportunity.

    It is the Spirit that gives the opportunity, He does this through the direction of the Will of God and because of the Work of Jesus. If it takes my own mention to get someone to move, I would fear the cause.

    An altar call should not be incorporated into the conclusion of a sermon just because. I always tell people questioning me about it that if haply they feel after the Holy Spirit, then and there is the time and place to seek, because they shall find.

    Rarely have I seen the altar call used in the church I attend.

    Sorry so long, but couldn't explain myself with yes or no.

    God makes the call.

    God Bless.
    Bro. Dallas
     
  17. Terry_Herrington

    Terry_Herrington New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2002
    Messages:
    4,455
    Likes Received:
    1
    This whole thread is nothing but a waste of time. I would expect some churches to complain about alter calls, but not baptist churches.
    How truly sad.

    *****unnecessary attack removed****

    [ February 28, 2003, 11:02 PM: Message edited by: C.S. Murphy ]
     
  18. KenH

    KenH Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2002
    Messages:
    36,179
    Likes Received:
    438
    Faith:
    Baptist
    [/QUOTE]Before you say such a thing you need to first prove that altar calls have a Biblical basis. If you look long and hard at this subject you will find that altar calls are extra-Biblical - that doesn't mean it is wrong to use them as a device but it also doesn't mean that they must be used to have a Biblical worship service.

    Also, you need to know that altar calls were the invention of Charles Finney in the early 1800s. The church did just fine without them for about 1800 years.

    Finally, surely you know that Baptists have never marched in lockstep with all other Baptists. The word "Baptist" is a very large umbrella. [​IMG]

    [ February 28, 2003, 11:03 PM: Message edited by: C.S. Murphy ]
     
  19. Daniel David

    Daniel David New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Messages:
    5,316
    Likes Received:
    0
    Legitimate Baptists have always been Bible people. How truly sad that people equate "going forward" with "getting right with God".

    Paul disagreed with such stuff. Just consider 1 Cor. 2:1-5.

    [ February 28, 2003, 11:05 PM: Message edited by: C.S. Murphy ]
     
  20. Terry_Herrington

    Terry_Herrington New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2002
    Messages:
    4,455
    Likes Received:
    1
    PTW,
    Surely you must read what you post. You accuse pastors of tricking people into thinking that it is the going down the isle that saves them. In the hundreds or even thousands of alter calls I have witnessed in my lifetime this has never been the case. People are encouraged to come and pray to God and to repent of their sins. What is wrong with this?
     
Loading...