A friend and I recently walked the streets of our town to talk to people who were coming in and out of the bars about the gospel. We noticed that a restaurant, typically closed by the time we head downtown weekly, was hosting a party with a band. We stood in front of the restaurant for a little while (on public property), passed out tracts, and hoped someone might be interested in having a conversation with us. Finally, a lady came walking down the sidewalk in a bath robe—part of the restaurant’s pajama party.
Eventually, my ninth-grade gym teacher also walked out to where we were standing, and I greeted him. I could tell he didn’t recognize me, but I wouldn’t have expected him to after about 14 years. We gave him a tract, and had a few minutes of conversation. My friend started going through a few of the Ten Commandments with him, and my teacher admitted to being a liar (9th Commandment), a thief (8th Commandment), and an adulterer at heart (7th Commandment, and Matthew 5:27-28). At this point the conversation took a turn for the worse.
He said he had been a history teacher for 36 years before retiring (interesting, because he never taught history while I was in high school), and he knew the Bible was unreliable. My friend pointed out that if he doesn’t trust the Bible, he would have to throw out all ancient literature and history, because the Bible has many more manuscripts on record than any other ancient writing. Then, he claimed that Christians have misinterpreted the Bible, and what we were telling him wasn’t true.
We gave him a few other apologetics for the veracity of the Bible, but the more we talked, the louder he became. When my friend put his hand on the guy’s shoulder to try to calm him down a little bit, he grew even angrier. Even touching him, he said, is assault and battery, and if we touched anyone else, he threatened, he would call the police.
I was very disappointed that someone who should be a pillar in the community would act so immature. I don’t think he was drunk (but I’m not an expert at determining if someone is drunk). As far as his eternal soul, I’d be more worried if he seemed apathetic than if he reacted how he did. It brings to mind the old saying: When you throw a rock into a pack of dogs, the one that yelps the loudest is the one that got hit. All we can do is pray for him. And please do.