The Loudmouth Protestant

April 21, 2010

A Message to the Subway Preachers

I haven’t had the pleasure of spotting this during my commute yet, but I do have to say that I cosign with the message. I know what you are thinking, “Aren’t you pro-spreading the Gospel?” To which I will answer, “Of course I am.” But, what you should also know is in my nearly eight years of riding the subways of the New York City Transit Authority I have yet to see a subway preacher yield any candidates for salvation or deliverance as a result of their screaming that everyone is going to hell with gasoline drawls on. Subway preaching is almost as effective as the people who stand with the stoic look on their faces with a Watchtower in one hand and an Awake in the other, translation not effective. While I respect the effort of the early morning/late night sermon, I’m not sure I can get with condemning people to hell before you show them what life in Christ looks like. I won’t carry on with this discourse any longer, but I will leave you with this poem that is oft quoted. I think this is a good message to give to the subway prophets.

I’d Rather See A Sermon

Edgar A. Guest

I’d rather see a sermon

than hear one any day;

I’d rather one should walk with me

than merely tell the way.

The eye’s a better pupil

and more willing than the ear,

Fine counsel is confusing,

but example’s always clear;

And the best of all preachers

are the men who live their creeds,

For to see good put in action

is what everybody needs.

I soon can learn to do it

if you’ll let me see it done;

I can watch your hands in action,

but your tongue too fast may run.

And the lecture you deliver

may be very wise and true,

But I’d rather get my lessons

by observing what you do;

For I might misunderstand you

and the high advice you give,

But there’s no misunderstanding

how you act and how you live.



  1. I agree..if a Christian’s job is to market God to other people; preaching crazily on the subway is NOT selling the product.

    Comment by Kristen — April 21, 2010 @ 6:36 pm | Reply

  2. preach the gospel…use words if you have to. great poem.

    Comment by natural nubian — April 22, 2010 @ 11:46 am | Reply

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