Worth Talking About

Worth Talking About

MC Midweek Feb. 22, 2023

by Jeff Prince, Minister to Students

The 80’s decade is known for movies, mix tapes, mullets, Myrtle Beach, BIG hair, hair bands, flowered shorts, Pac-Man, pinball, arcades and music that was FUN; just to name a few!  It’s also remembered for its preachers. Billy Graham was still active and men like Jimmy Swaggart, Jerry Falwell and Jim Bakker were everywhere. Bakker’s PTL headquarters was not that far from my home in Charlotte.  All across North Carolina, in towns like Raleigh, Chapel Hill, Durham and Davidson, another type of preacher was also making waves. They were known as ‘pit’ preachers, and the most prominent preacher in the ‘pit’ was Cliffe Knechtle.

When you read the word, ‘pit,’ think concrete slab, grassy area or any spot on campus where college students tended to hang out. Much like Paul did throughout the second half of Acts, it was here where Knechtle reasoned with people from the Scriptures, explaining and proving that it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and rise from the dead. Cliffe also answered a lot of other tough questions. I did not include Winston-Salem (where I went to college) in my previous city list because I never actually heard anyone pit preach in person.

About a month ago, a thumbnail entitled, ‘Give me an Answer’ appeared in my YouTube queue. The man in the thumbnail looked interesting, I saw college students sitting on steps behind him, and it seemed like something I might benefit from. Wouldn’t you know it, the video featured Cliffe Knechtle [probably less than 2-3 years ago] speaking and reasoning with college students at the University of Texas. I won’t go over everything he said that day or in the myriad of other online ‘Answer’ videos, but in each of the ones I’ve seen, Knechtle ALWAYS talks about the reliability of Jesus:

  • He lived a sinless life
  • He treated people with compassion and integrity
  • the content of His ethical teaching
  • the evidence of the way He died and forgave people at the moment of His most excruciating pain
  • the importance of the resurrection

Did you know that if Christ has not been raised, your faith and my faith are futile?! Trust me, I am far from a gifted evangelist. However, because I am ‘in Christ,’ I do have a story about Christ to tell; so do you! When you eventually do talk to people about Jesus, make sure to include these five essential truths. I strongly encourage you to look Knechtle up online. His knowledge about many topics is vast and you’ll be glad you did. Have a great month, go find an old or make a new mix tape, and I look forward to seeing you around.