Crown Rights Media brings you another video from the series, Open-air Preacher Profiles, this time on Tony Miano. The footage was captured at the 2012 Revival-Southeast Fellowship Gathering during the Atlanta Dogwood Festival April 20-22. I had the privilege to serve with Tony and get to know him more personally during the weekend, and very much looking forward to more labor with him and other faithful street preachers this summer at our 2012 Summer Olympics missions trip.
Marcus Pittman did an excellent job interviewing Tony and pulling together an important short documentary on some of the issues of concern revolving around street preaching today. Addressed in the video are the following affecting the modern street preaching culture:
- Nomadic street preachers not submitted to any biblical authority under the God-ordained local church structure led by elders. You can watch a complete message on this topic in the following message, The Evangelists Responsibility to the Local Church, or read 13 Symptoms of Christian Nomadism.
- Shock and awe preachers who stand on their box spewing venom from their hypocritical, self-righteous tongues condemning and judging those beneath them (pun intended). These modern-day Pharisees can be heard exalting themselves while mocking, ridiculing, name-calling, and belittling their passersby. They are often referred to as “sign-guys” (though there may be some exceptions to “sign guys” not being of the “shock and awe” preacher type explained here), wearing loud apparel and hoisting signs for the lost to “turn or burn”. Many of these men are angry and do not manifest the fruit of the Spirit. An example of this type of preaching can be found at Official Street Preachers, and DefCon recently covered James Lyman here.
- Pelagians who deny the substitutionary atonement of Christ (imputation of sinners’ sin to Christ on the cross and Christ’s righteousness to sinners upon justification), who deny original sin, and who believe and teach sinless perfectionism. I have found it difficult to distinguish between shock and awe preachers and Pelagians as most shock and awe guys I have run into believe in at least one of these heresies. Popular Pelagian street preachers today would include Kerrigan Skelly and John McGlone of Pinpoint Evangelism, and Jesse Morrell of Open-air Outreach. Josef Urban covered this well a few years ago in his article, The Heretical Theology of Jesse Morrell. You may also find the following articles helpful: Pelagianism: Religion of Natural Man by Michael Horton and Phil Johnson’s A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing: How Charles Finney’s Theology Ravaged the Evangelical Movement.
These are critical issues affecting not only street evangelism, but the church as a whole today. If you find yourself in any of these categories, take heed to the warnings provided in the open-air preacher profile video below and the links provided in this post.
As ambassadors of Christ, we are called to exalt the glorious name of the Lord Jesus Christ, to proclaim the holiness and justice of Almighty God, to herald the Gospel of Christ for the forgiveness of sins, and to call men and women to repent and trust in Jesus Christ alone to receive eternal life – all this while being submitted to a local assembly of believers led by church elders.