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Jack Diamond
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I'm wondering if it sensible as a Christian, to do illusions involving blood.....you know like amputations and flesh penetrations? I understand that its not a good idea to go around church performing tricks like that, though. But what about doing it at all?

Is it possible to use it in gospel magic?
Terry Owens
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It all depends how you use it...In a church setting, it probably won't fly...I did a sword thru neck several years ago and it freaked out the pastor's wife and she asked me not to do that kind of thing...You have to remember, you need to tailor your act to the audience your performing for.

You have to remember, you're a guest, they may have hired you, but we as performers still need to be gracious and respect those we are performing for, and one of the ways to do that is by knowing your audience.
Tony Brent
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I agree with Terry; it depends on your audience, and how you use it and why you are using it. My rule of thumb is; if I'm performing somewhere and I have a routine that is "questionable", then I don't do that routine, pure and simple. Then there is no doubt or worry.

Tony Brent
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Tempesta
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I don't hold back for anybody. A lot of Christians need a good dose of the real world and if they feel that what I do is questionable, then that is their own lack of judgment on their part.

Furthermore, Jesus talks about how you can tell where a man's heart truly lies by looking at the fruit they bare. If someone is going to judge me, and even go as far as judging me by their own standards, then in my eyes, they are NOT the type of fellowship that I want to be around.

Jesus says if your hand is turned against you, cut it off. If Christians are going to act childish in regards to what I do, then to me, they are a part of the body of Christ that must be cut off...

...I don't put up with petty bickering like that. I'm too busy fulfilling a purpose than satisfying people that are still stuck in the traditional past.

Then again, my type/style of magic is quite different.

||sean ||
//Sean Beard
Terry Owens
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When it comes to ministry, you've got to have a different mindset than an arts mindset...Paul said that he became all things to all people that he might win some...the object is not to compromise the message, the means of which we share the uncompromised message can and should change depending on who we are ministering to.
Terry Holley
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Quote:
On 2007-12-09 09:28, Tempesta wrote:
I don't hold back for anybody. A lot of Christians need a good dose of the real world and if they feel that what I do is questionable, then that is their own lack of judgment on their part.

Furthermore, Jesus talks about how you can tell where a man's heart truly lies by looking at the fruit they bare. If someone is going to judge me, and even go as far as judging me by their own standards, then in my eyes, they are NOT the type of fellowship that I want to be around.

Jesus says if your hand is turned against you, cut it off. If Christians are going to act childish in regards to what I do, then to me, they are a part of the body of Christ that must be cut off...

...I don't put up with petty bickering like that. I'm too busy fulfilling a purpose than satisfying people that are still stuck in the traditional past.

Then again, my type/style of magic is quite different.

||sean ||


And your occupation is a Public Relations Representative?

Terry
Co-author with illusionist Andre' Kole of "Astrology and Psychic Phenomena."
Tempesta
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Quote:
On 2007-12-09 18:13, Terry Holley wrote:
Quote:
On 2007-12-09 09:28, Tempesta wrote:
I don't hold back for anybody. A lot of Christians need a good dose of the real world and if they feel that what I do is questionable, then that is their own lack of judgment on their part.

Furthermore, Jesus talks about how you can tell where a man's heart truly lies by looking at the fruit they bare. If someone is going to judge me, and even go as far as judging me by their own standards, then in my eyes, they are NOT the type of fellowship that I want to be around.

Jesus says if your hand is turned against you, cut it off. If Christians are going to act childish in regards to what I do, then to me, they are a part of the body of Christ that must be cut off...

...I don't put up with petty bickering like that. I'm too busy fulfilling a purpose than satisfying people that are still stuck in the traditional past.

Then again, my type/style of magic is quite different.

||sean ||


And your occupation is a Public Relations Representative?

Terry


No sir. That was a temporary job for Ellusionist. And I stand by my opinion. I'm not doing this for the church, or for Christians. I'm doing it because I have a genuine desire to spread God, and the best way I know how to do that is by being myself and being able to reach all parts of the earth. So instead of listening to ignorant minded people in some church who cant be bothered to study the differences between magic of the old and the magic of today, I listen to God and do my best to follow the path.

Quote:
When it comes to ministry, you've got to have a different mindset than an arts mindset...Paul said that he became all things to all people that he might win some...the object is not to compromise the message, the means of which we share the uncompromised message can and should change depending on who we are ministering to.


I think I'm being misunderstood. I don't have an artist's mindset, I'm talking about having a Christian mindset. They only people who have ever disliked or been turned off by what I do, are very conservative and ignorant[used in the literal sense] Christians.

You hit the nail on the head about Paul. We MUST become all things to all people if we expect to reach anybody and THAT is what I'm doing. I've never done magic for a church audience and don't plan to, and most of the derogatory comments are form those in the church who don't take the time to listen and realize anything other than their own ill-educated opinions. I'm talking about people who want to PROHIBIT me from reaching as many people as possible, because they don't agree with "magic" when they 're ignorant on the subject. Much like everyone is on this Golden Compass bandwagon of hate. Same thing.

Mr Owens, I wholeheartedly agree with you, but it's not me compromising the message, it's the comfortable Christians who don't get with the times.

||sean ||
//Sean Beard
Tempesta
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I also just want to add that if the Sword Through Neck Illusion was appropriate for the occasion in every other sense, that lady who got too freaked out and complained could've easily "not watched."

From the way I'm hearing that story, it sounds very judgmental on her part to act the way she did. If the audience liked it and it worked, keep doing it and add a disclaimer.

I'm personally not promoting that everyone do violent, extreme stuff for Christian audiences and church settings. I'm only giving my opinion of not "changing for the world."

Also, just went back and re-read some stuff and I want to clarify. I agree with tailoring your act to your audience. What I mean by not holding back for anybody is that my material is liked and well accepted among everyone I have performed for, with the exception of certain people. I've never performed something that my whole audience didn't like because I DID conform to them and used material that was relevant to them. It's always been certain people though who like to gossip and confront me about what I do, and then try to tell me how and what I SHOULD be doing.

I'm not going to change for them, and I'm definitely not going to hold back for them either.

||sean ||
//Sean Beard
Payne
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Quote:
On 2007-12-09 19:27, Tempesta wrote:

And I stand by my opinion. I'm not doing this for the church, or for Christians. I'm doing it because I have a genuine desire to spread God, and the best way I know how to do that is by being myself and being able to reach all parts of the earth. So instead of listening to ignorant minded people in some church who cant be bothered to study the differences between magic of the old and the magic of today, I listen to God and do my best to follow the path.


I think I'm being misunderstood. I don't have an artist's mindset, I'm talking about having a Christian mindset. They only people who have ever disliked or been turned off by what I do, are very conservative and ignorant[used in the literal sense] Christians.

I'm talking about people who want to PROHIBIT me from reaching as many people as possible, because they don't agree with "magic" when they 're ignorant on the subject.



I'll bet Torquemada felt the same way too.

Why all the hostility here (or at least what I'm sensing as hostility)?
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
Tempesta
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That's my fault regarding the hostility. I' just passionate about what I believe, that's all. Sorry if I come off as angry, I don't mean to. : )

||sean ||
//Sean Beard
Dan Bernier
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Hey Tempesta,
I have to admit that I'm some what bothered by what you say here in this post, but I suppose you'll just tell me that it's my problem to deal with. As Christian's we are supposed to be loving to people. In any Christian ministry that should be our first goal, representing God's love!Respect is another big one. If we can't respect other people or their views we can't expect them to respect us. It's good that you want to reach people with God's message, but to what extent is what you need to ask yourself. I fail to see how stabbing a sword through one's throat glorifies God or helps illustrate a gospel message. You are right that we can tell what kind of a Christian someone is by the fruit they bare, but the fruit I see being shown here is one of hostility, and an attitude of, "I don't give a hoot what other people think, I'll do whatever I want". I know this wasn't your exact words but I believe it's the attitude you are revealing. Ask yourself this. "What kind of fruit are other people seeing in me?" You are still young and I have taken that into consideration in responding to your post. But, it seems that you are more concerned about doing things your way than the kind of response you might have on other people. If you think that I am judging you, I'm not judging you but only your statements that you've made. To be completely honest, I don't think they are appropiate of someone who is a Christian. This doesn't mean I think you're a bad person or anything, I don't know you enough to make that kind of judgememnt. I just think you have more room in your heart than you may be giving yourself time for.
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Clark
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You'd think they wouldn't mind it - seeing as how the "Passion" was basically one long bloody beating, and the top grossing Christian movie of all time....
“The key to creativity is in knowing how to hide your sources.”
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Terry Owens
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Tempesta...I like folks with passion, we need more of it. But what we need to remember, just because some don't like "gospel" magic it doesn't mean they are trying to keep you from spreading the Gospel. I am a Pentecostal preacher, I preach with a whole lot of energy, and I would probably find more churches who don't want that type of preaching than a few individuals who don't like the concept of using magic to spread the word. All of those who don't like my style of preaching hasn't kept me from spreading the word...

You can't reach everyone the same way, but as Christians, it's up to us to find our style of evangelism and go for it...your cutting edge style is probably what it takes to reach a teens to 20's (the I'm not in church) type crowd and I would say go for it. I've been blasted by "Christian Magicians" for my style of magic and the way I present the message, but that's okay, I'm called to reach the ones who will connect to my style, just as you are called to reach those who connect with your style.
karbonkid
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The Lord works in mysterious ways, so why can't we? To each their own, I say. Some people say my Jesus Sven**** deck is not Christian...I don't listen though.
Dan Bernier
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I fully enjoy using magic and illusion to present the Gospel of Jesus Christ. When I first thought of the idea to combine my magic skills and Gospel truths I wasn't aware that there was even such a thing. I was so glad and relieved to know that many more Christians were already years a head of me on the idea of combining magic tricks with biblical scriptures and lessons. This helped my transition much more easily because other Christians already faced the issue and problems that most churches had years ago about gospel magic. Many good articles have since been written in support of gospel magic, and some churches began to open their doors to the idea of it, even allowing gospel magicians to perform for the congregation.

Magic, as a tool to witness to someone, or to preach the Gospel to is just that, a tool. We as Christian performers should always be interrested in how other people perceive us. We should always be considerate to whomever we perform for, or witness to. And, the magic should always be secondary to the message. The trick is the tool to help illustrate the message.

We have the freedom to do whatever we want to, but we all know that not everything we have the freedom to do is healthy for us spiritually. We still have to ask ourselves questions don't we. Will this certain trick freak people out? If we might think there is a chance that it will, we shouldn't use it. If we think it'll work with the type of crowd that we have, and it doesn't compromise our faith in Christ then we should go for it.

We should also be respectful to those who don't except gospel magic. We made a personal choice, and they have made a personal choice, all from the same freedom God gave to each of us. They're not wrong for feeling that way anymore than we are wrong for perfoming gospel magic. I would love to speak with most of them that don't except gospel magic and perhaps have an opportunity to help persuade them to think otherwise, but I think the best approach is to let God be God. I don't think it would be appropriate to convey the attitude of I don't care what other people think. As christians we should care very much, or at least try to care about what other people think.

I am sure that there are Christians out there who would love to see a blood and gore gospel magic show, but I would surely hope that all the blood and gore would not be the message of the show, leaving the original message as the tool to present the blood and gore. Just my thought!
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robwar0100
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This has been an excellent discussion. I stay away from violent effects in my routine because they do not fit my personality. When we perform, are we doing it for ourselves? The one who paid for the show? The audience? To glorify God? Why do we perform? To show others how awesome we are? To entertain? To educate? To minister?

The Apostle Paul addresses a church out of balance in the book of First Corinthians. In it, he says all things are permissible, but not everything is beneficial. The blood and gore and violence may have its place for a targeted audience, but I choose to stay away from anything sadistic or masochistic (not sure of my spelling on those words). Paul also talks about Christians who are suing one another in secular court. He tells them before suing it would have been better to be wronged than to take the matter to those outside of the church. He also tells us to be careful in how we deal with the weaker brother.

It might be perfectly OK to do a violent show, but if it offends anyone, we should not do it, regardless of our passion.

Blessings,

Bobby
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Darkwing
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For a family show (which is what your church audience is made up of), it is in poor taste to do any type of violent or disection type of illusion IMHO.

Remember what Paul said about eating meat sacrificed to idols......

David
Terry Owens
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Bobby asks a good question because there is a BIG difference between a church hiring you for a show (let's say just for entertainment or a fund raiser), and a church bringing you in for an Evangelistic event. They are 2 different types of performances with 2 different objectives. I feel if they bring me in for Evangelistic efforts, then they should have done their homework and make sure my style of ministry fits what they want to accomplish. If I'm hard core and my magic is on the edge and they can't handle that, they don't bring me in. But if they are a cutting edge church and want something radical to reach out to the lost, then an edgy style of program might be for them.

Even though I perform secular shows, I prefer to go to churches, because for me, it's all about ministering to people and winning souls. If that didn't take place, I would feel like I've failed. I've done events that took place at the Super Dome in New Orleans as well as State wide meetings in different states, but it was all about ministry, and my tool to minister happens to utilize the magical arts.

I also enjoy performing for secular audiences because I enjoy entertaining, but what really jazzes me up and turns me on is a chance to minister to an audience. That is where God has gifted me and I feel I really excel in this area. My heart is to bring the same level of quality that you would get from a talented performer, to the church...but the bottom line is my ministry does not fit, nor does it need to fit, every church.
Dan Bernier
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Great post Terry! You make a lot of points and speak from experience. I also liked what Darkwing said.

What I liked most about your post Terry is how you seperate the two types of Christian Magicians. It's interresting because I'm currently writing an essay on just that subject. I won't get into it all now cause that will be just getting way off topic for this thread.

Getting back onto topic. I just can't see how grossing someone out edifies Christ. Christians have to be careful when using magic. We can't leave them to believe we have supernatural powers, or that we're spiritually gifted and able to perform miracles. And, our objective shouldn't be to shock or gross our audience with blood and gore just to get them to hear God's Word, no matter who the audience is. I don't go get drunk at a bar so I can witness to people in there. Christians who don't perform gospel magic, but stick to the mainstream audience should also act Christ-like as is proper of anyone who claims to worship the name of Jesus.Putting the magic aside, what I'm saying is as Christians we need to conduct ourselves as followers of Christ. We are Christian first.
"If you're going to walk in the rain, don't complain about getting wet!"
Payne
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Quote:
On 2007-12-19 22:39, Gospel Dan wrote:

And, our objective shouldn't be to shock or gross our audience with blood and gore just to get them to hear God's Word, no matter who the audience is.



Gee, I wish someone had told Mel Gibson this before he made The Passion Smile
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
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