PREACHING AT UNIVERSITY OF NORTH FLORIDA 2/20-2/21/12- BY BROTHER MICAH ARMSTRONG

Monday February 20, 2012-University of North Florida-Jacksonville, Florida:  Very cold day for Floridians with temperatures in the mid 50’s with strong wind and overcast.  It might as well have been a blizzard.  The campus seemed dead.  Walking to the free speech area some students informed me there was a anti abortion group set up in the student union area (which is nowhere near the area where I preach). 

 

I preached from 1:05 PM to about 2:10 PM but never had more than have a dozen.  I had some very good interaction and discussion with some on living sin free and holy.  By 2:10 PM the last listener left and there was no one around. 

 

TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT

 

We hung around for a few more hours and had discussions with groups of 2 to 5.  There was a guy and a girl who were way too close for comfort we talked to for a long time.  She professed to be a Christian and had cussed at me last Thursday after listening to me all afternoon.  She accused me of saying many things I never said but things other students reported I said.  She is also an immodest dresser even by the standards of the campus. She is also a pastor’s daughter. 

 

Surprisingly neither her nor her “boyfriend” had a problem with me preaching about living a sin free life (I would not be surprised if they are fornicating) but had many questions and objections on the Biblical method of preaching.  It seemed we made a lot of progress with them and they were civil even though they did not agree with me.  They asked me about my testimony of how I got saved. 

 

The sun came out and it seemed to warm up some around 3:00 PM but I was already involved in a discussion with the small group. 

 

We left the campus around 4:00 PM. 

 

Tuesday February 21, 2012-University of North Florida-Jacksonville, Florida:  The weather was warmer today but overcast.  I began preaching at 12:30 PM and gathered a small group.  I was somewhat in entertainment mode for some time until I had gathered a good group of listeners.  I then shifted into solid Biblical preaching. 

 

DEALING WITH A DIFFICULT HECKLER

 

The group of 15 to 20 was asking good questions and listening fairly well when I had a loud heckler from back by the building keep trying to preach over me.  He was far enough away and my voice was reverberating nicely against the building so he gave me many good preaching points and it was easy to preach over him.  The crowd grew to around 50-60. 

 

Soon the heckler could not stand I was answering all his objections with scripture so he came onto the green and walked in front of me and kept trying to yell over me.  The crowd grew to around 120-150 and a police officer showed up and watched. 

 

As the heckler was following me everywhere and blocking me while trying to yell over me I backed up onto the green and lifted up my voice and projected it above the heckler and the crowd into the building.  It reverberated all over the place and everyone could hear clearly.  I preached very simple and short scriptures warning them to repent of sin until things settled down. 

 

YOU WERE NOT AVAILABLE

 

The heckler left and gradually the crowd went back down to around 30-40 by 2:00 PM.  Now I was preaching and answering questions effectively as the crowd was listening well.  The crowd continued growing to around 70-80.  By 2:30 PM I had to take a restroom break so I called on Sister Elizabeth to take over until I returned.  If you are against women preachers, I would have called on you but you were not available. 

 

A STUDENT WITH POTENTIAL

 

A small group of 3-4 male students followed me and began asking me questions.  One was a black male student who had been listening all afternoon.  He asked good questions and when I answered them all with scripture he seemed satisfied.  I seemed to have won him over as they day wore on as later he invited me to his church service that night, told me he appreciated my knowledge of scripture and asked how to memorize scripture. 

 

I looked over where Sister Elizabeth was preaching and by now there was a huge circle spread out all around her of around 150-170 students (which is very large for this campus).  She looked at me and nodded signaling she was ready for me to take over again. 

 

A SERIOUS BIBLE STUDENT? 

 

I was very careful to maintain civility with such a large crowd as I wanted to continue preaching and not have things disrupt into chaos or a circus.  The crowd stayed calm and civil.  Soon they closed in some and the size went down to around 60-70 gradually.  There was one long haired male student who asked good questions and was very civil and seemed to have a better than average knowledge of scripture for a college campus student.  To me he struck me as being an honest student of scripture.  He told the crowd he thought I was Wesleyan Armenian. 

 

I preached and answered questions effectively until 4:30 PM.  At this point I had to take another restroom break.  I returned and had a discussion with several of the students.  I wanted to focus on the black male student and the long haired male as they seemed to have so much potential but several students deceiving themselves as being intellectual and philosophical kept interrupting and disrupting.  They were totally dishonest and insincere yet deceived themselves into thinking they were “logical”. 

 

We left the campus around 5:00 PM.  It was a very productive day!

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