Sunday, December 21, 2008

Why I still do altar calls or invitations to be born again.....

I realize that a lot of the church world has moved away from doing alter calls during their services. Many people have questioned why I continue to use this method of evangelism. Let me start off by stating a few things that I see that would cause leaders to shy away from this method.

1. I understand that just because someone comes forward during a service does not mean that a change has taken place in their lives and many people have walked away confused.

2. Another reason would be because of abuse in the past with high pressure and preaching of hell fire and brimstone that would scare people into coming to the front to receive Christ into their lives so that they would miss hell. When people are scared into coming forward it sometimes causes more harm than good.

3. I also realize that there is no biblical example of alter calls in the bible and that it is a method that the modern church world has adapted for evangelism.

Saying all this, I still like to invite people forward to receive Christ during my services. I am always sensitive to the churches that I am ministering in and the fear factor of the people in the audience to come forward. In some churches people are more reluctant to come forward to receive Christ. And when I sense they are, I usually just pray with people where they are in their seats.

When I do give an invitation to come forward to be born again, I almost discourage people from coming forward. Yet the front is always lined with people receiving Christ. I have been in many services in the past where young people went forward just to get close to the person on stage or hoping to get a special gift or something for coming forward. I have had children in the past come forward expecting to get candy or to play a game.

When I invite people to come to the front to receive Jesus and to be born again, I am very specific about who I want to come forward. I always tell the audience not to come forward to get close to me, see the lights, play a game, or get a prize. I tell them not to come forward because their neighbor does or they think it’s cool. The only people that I want to come forward are the ones that are serious and understand what I am talking about. I tell them that if they do not understand or are confused not to come forward.

I am also very specific about what being born again is during my service. I do not just tag an invitation on the end of each service as an afterthought. If I give an invitation to be born again, I spend a little time teaching on the subject.

I believe that faith comes by hearing the word of God (Romans 10:17). If the word is not taught on the subject, how can a person have faith to receive salvation? When an invitation is tagged on the end of each service without any explanation of what we are asking people to respond to, it has caused a lot of confusion in the past.

I am not saying that everyone that has been born again truly understood everything about salvation. God is much bigger than that. I was 6 years old when I was born again. I went forward on New Years Eve in my father’s church. No one even prayed with me but, I knew that I was changed that day. I went home and told my mother that I had become a Christian that night.

A lot of people in the world today have many misconceptions about being a Christian. Many believe that anything from being a good person to belonging to a church makes one a Christian.

In the past I have been accused of herding people to the front during invitations. This is why I have become so specific in whom I want to come forward. I also qualify people before I ask them to come forward. I first ask how many know for sure that they have been born again. With all eyes closed and heads bowed, I ask them to raise their hands. Then I tell them that if they have been born again that they do not have to keep being born again over and over. If they mess up and sin that the bible says in 1 John 1:9 that if we confess our sin that he is faithful and just to forgive us. This does not mean that we have to keep getting born again and again.

Next, I ask how many have never been born again or are not sure that they have been. With all eyes closed and heads bowed, I ask them to raise their hands. Then I ask for the people that have never been born again and would like to receive this gift to stand up, but only if they are serious and understand what I am talking about. Don’t stand up because you want exercise, because your neighbor does it, or you think it is cool, but because you truly want to become born again.

After waiting a little while to give people a chance to stand up if they want to receive Christ, I then tell them that I want them to do one more thing. But before I do I tell them, I do not want them to come forward to get close to me, play a game, see the lights, or receive a prize. I ask them that if they are serious and understand what I am talking about to come forward. No pressure, no fear, no manipulation, only if this is what they truly want for their lives. 9 out of 10 times the front is lined with people receiving Christ. .

After I get them to the front, I sit them down on the floor around me and ask them what they came down here for. Usually a few children raise their hands and answer to be born again or to ask Jesus into my life. I then ask the group if this is why everyone came down front. I proceed to tell them that this is the only reason I want them down here right now. Then I tell them that I am going to say a prayer, and I want them to repeat it after me. I always ask them if they know that just because they repeat a prayer does not do anything for them. When we pray we are talking to God, so I want you to mean this from your heart. If you pray this to God, and you believe it in your heart, and are serious, he will come in and change you on the inside. I always include the whole audience in the prayer. And I tell all in attendance that even if they did not come forward and have not asked Jesus in their life, that they can be born again right where they are.

I never threaten with hell or in any way scare people into coming forward. I believe that it is the goodness of God that brings man to repentance. When people understand the good news of the gospel and that the price has already been paid for them, they will want to receive this gift that has been offered to them.

By coming forward it is making a public profession of their faith. It lets everyone there know what they did. People have more of a grip on it when they come forward than just repeating a prayer in their seats. It is a more personal environment where I can get close to them and lead them into salvation.

There is a new trend that teaches that it is the parent’s job to lead the children into the new birth. I do not disagree with this. Ultimately it should be the parent that prays with their children to be born again. I prayed with my son to be born again while driving in a car when he was just a child. But to be honest about this, a lot of parents do not have a firm grip on what being born again is themselves, or are not comfortable discussing it with their children. I pray that this changes.

If we always put it in the parents ball park and they drop the ball, or maybe they are not even born again themselves, or they do not go to church themselves, do we let these children creep through the cracks of our system? There must be a time where children have a chance to be born again while they are attending our services. It must be high on our priority list for children coming up through our churches.

I am in no means saying that this is the only way or even the best way to lead people to the Lord, but it is what works for me. The best way would be for churches to go into their communities and personally lead people to the lord individually. If every person in every church would lead at least one or two people to the lord each year our churches would double or triple each year. Unfortunately, this is not happening. Even in churches that teach this method of evangelism or was founded on the premise of personal evangelism. Somewhere it always seems we loose our site of the mission in front of us and leave it up to evangelist like myself, to come into the church and evangelize the small group of the community that will come out to the event that the church is offering.

I pray we as the body of Christ will rise up and take back this generation.

God Bless
Jerry Moyer
The Jubilee Gang

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Jubilee Gang Christmas Newsletter


Our 2008 Christmas newsletter is up on our website and can be downloaded at the link below...


God Bless You

Jerry & Candy Moyer
The Jubilee Gang

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Over 300 people born again in Sayreville, NJ

We conducted our last event for 2008 today in Sayreville, NJ, at Faith Fellowship. Around 2500 people were in attendance at this Christmas outreach event. We saw over 300 people come forward to be born again during this one day event.

After our ministry time was over each child received lunch and a $20.00 gift from the church. It was awesome to partner with Faith Fellowship to see so many lives touched during this Christmas season.

We have traveled over 36,000 miles this year, ministered in 37 different churches, and saw over 2000 people born again. God is Good!

Below are some pictures for our event is Sayreville, NJ

Crowd of around 2500 at Faith Fellowship
in Sayreville, NJ

Pizza flop game

Jerry and a young man doing an object lesson at
Faith Fellowship in Sayreville, NJ

Jerry praying with over 300 people to be born again
at Faith Fellowship in Sayreville, NJ

We will be off the road until February when we minister at Kidfest in Ocean City, MD. on February 6-8.

Between 800 and 1000 children are expected to be in attendance at Kidfest this year. To register your church or find out more info about Kidfest click on the link below.


We are now scheduling for 2009. If you are thinking about scheduling us next year contact us ASAP to reserve your date in our schedule. Our 2009 schedule is starting to take shape now and will be filling up over the next few months.

God Bless You,

Jerry & Candy Moyer
The Jubilee Gang

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Teaching children about salvation

Teaching children about salvation
By Jerry Moyer
The Jubilee Gang

There is much confusion today about what it means to be a Christian. It is very important that what we teach children about their relationship with God is accurate. When we just teach children that salvation is “being friends with God” or “having Jesus as their best friend” we are not exactly presenting the full scope of what being a Christian really is. I can be friends with you, but it does not change my life for eternity. It does not give me eternal life. Yes, Jesus should be our best friend and we need to develop our relationship with God but that is a byproduct of the change that occurs in our heart when we are born again.

Some misconceptions in our society about being a Christian are that going to church makes one a Christian, praying and reading the bible makes one a Christian, being born in a Christian family or attending a Christian church makes one a Christian. Or even being religious, following a churches statement of faith, rules, or regulations, or just being a good person makes one a Christian. Most of these things are good and help us grow spiritually, but do not make one a Christian.

When a religious leader came to Jesus in John chapter 3 he asked Jesus what I must do to enter your kingdom. Jesus did not say belong to a certain church, obey more rules, or become more religious. He told Nicodemus you must be born again.

Now there has been a lot of confusion about what exactly being born again is. Is it just a decision to follow Christ, or is it a transformation of the heart of a person?

If it is no more than making a decision to follow Christ without a change on the inside being a Christian is no different than being a Buddhist, Hindu, or Muslim. It is simply just a religion that we have joined.

What sets Christianity apart from all other religions is the supernatural change that takes place in our spirit man. This is the good news. We do not have to serve God in our own power. He changes us on the inside and gives us his very life and nature so that we can serve him. Its not just rules and regulations he puts the law in our heart when he puts his love in our heart. Rom. 5:5 says that the love of God has been put in our heart by the Holy Spirit. The bible also says that Love is the fulfillment of the law. If we love God and our neighbor we have fulfilled the law.

In Ezek 36:26-28 Ezekiel prophesied “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27 I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them.“ Here Ezekiel was talking about the change that would take place in the lives of believers after Jesus came and paid the price for our salvation.

I know the term “born again” was over used a few years ago when everyone from presidential candidates to movie stars said they were born again Christians. The term got drug through the mud and no one really knew what it meant, so we quit using it. The world asked what does “Born Again Christian” mean and no one knew, so we came up with terms like having Jesus in our heart and being friends with God.

When Adam ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil and disobeyed God something happened to Adam. He died. Not physically because we know from scripture that he lived for many years after the fall. He died spiritually. He was separated from God. When this happened he laid the foundation for all man kind to be born separated from God or dead spiritually.

That’s why the bible calls him the first Adam and calls Jesus the second Adam in 1 Cor. 15:45. In 1 Cor. 15:22 the bible says as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive.

As in the word of the Christian rapper, Tripp Lee “The bad news we were born in sin, The good news we can be born again.”

In order to be restored to the place where God had created us to be we needed a total transformation of our spirit man or be born again. When we receive Christ we are born into God’s family. We are not just adopted but born into it.

The Bible says in 1 Cor. 1:13 that we were delivered out of the kingdom of darkness and translated into the kingdom of God. Or in other words, we are taken out of the kingdom of darkness and put into the kingdom of God. When I see this word translated I always think of the transporter room in the old Star Trek program. We were taken from one place and put into another into another.

The bible also says in 2 Cor 5:17 that if we are in Christ we are a new creation. Old things have passed away, all things have become new. This does not simply sound like a decision to follow Christ or being friends with God to me. It sounds like a total transformation of the heart.

With out this change in our spirit man we have simply became religious or joined a religion. Without the supernatural element of being born again we have a form of Godliness but deny the power. We have dead religion that we have to strive to be good enough and follow the rules and regulations. When the good news is that Jesus paid the price with his blood on the cross for our salvation, and all we have to do is receive the free gift that God offers us.

Without the blood of Jesus being shed we cannot be born again. Today, we live in a bloodless society. We don’t even see our meat being processed any more. We only see the pre packaged meat that we buy in the store. But Christianity is a bloody religion. From the sacrifices of the Old Testament that God commanded to cover the sin of Israel to the Blood of Jesus being shed to take away our sin in the New Testament. The Bible says in Heb. 9:22 without the shedding of blood there is no remission or taking away of sin.

Now, I am not talking about being graphic and gory with children. I would never scare a child for anything. But we cannot leave the blood out of our faith or teaching. It is the very basic element of our faith. That’s why Jesus commanded us to takes the Lord’s Supper or communion was to put us in remembrance of his sacrifice for us.

I am not a huge fan of the term “having Jesus in our heart” either. The Bible says that Jesus is at the right hand of the father making intercession for us in Romans 8:34. I understand what we mean when we say that Jesus is living in our heart but Jesus himself is not living in us. His life and nature is in us. His character is in us. The love of God is in us. The 1 Cor. 13 kind of love is what is in us.

I realize that some of this is quit technical and is not presented on a Child’s level. Instead of talking about our nature being changed from sin to love, I talk about when Adam disobeyed God he received a sinful heart. We all are born with a sinful heart because of Adam’s disobedience. He represented all of us. When we are born again we receive a clean heart. I then explain what this means on a child’s level.

I had heard the terms Jesus died on the cross for our sin, born again, being saved, and all the other Christian terminology that is thrown around lightly my entire life growing up as a pastor’s child. But I did not understand it, until I became an adult and researched it out for my self. Sadly to say that many people grow up in our churches hearing these terms and never fully understand it. Then walk away from the faith because it was not presented in a way that made sense to them when they were older. It was presented like a fairy tale or Santa Claus and when they were old enough to think for their selves, they realize it did not make sense and walked away from the faith.

We as the body of Christ need to get back to teaching what “being born again is” so that the children and teens growing up in our churches understand it. If not when they become adults they will see no difference in Christianity, Buddhism, or Hinduism and will walk away from their faith and the church.

Jerry Moyer
The Jubilee Gang

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