Stupid Things Christians Do: Tract Tips

And by “Christians” I mean “Protestants,” primarily fundamentalist southern evangelicals.

This post went viral last week. It shows a fake “$10″ tract left as an actual tip for a waitress. The internet’s amplifying qualities made this seem like something new, but it’s not: “tract tips” are an old trick used by certain kinds of evangelicals to witness to people in a bold new way!

And by “bold new way,” I mean by being a total dick.

These tract tips come from various places, and they are like kryptonite for evangelization. Anyone reading any of these would fly as fast as possible from the kind of diseased faith that would produce such a thing.

Here’s a sampling from a self-publisher named James Russell. All of them have realistic-looking money printed on the other side:

I don’t know James Russell, but in my imagination he looks like this:

This is simply satanic. The one constant in the teaching of Christ and scripture is that God is Love. Love may be harsh, and God is willing to call sinners on their sin, but One who is Love may not also be Hate. And this is hate. James Russell is doing the devil’s work, as is anyone who uses deception to preach the gospel or denies the worker his wage by leaving a worthless piece of paper instead of real money.

We’re not supposed to water down the gospel, but we are supposed to preach it in love and charity. Things like this are a tiny fringe of the faith, but do real damage to the body of Christ.

About Thomas L. McDonald

Thomas L. McDonald writes about technology, theology, history, games, and shiny things. Details of his rather uneventful life as a professional writer and magazine editor can be found in the About tab.

  • http://www.parafool.com/ victor

    They better plan on never eating at the same restaurant twice, leaving “tips” like that. They might get a “Tract Check” next time. “CONGRADULATIONS! DID YOU KNOW? THERE WAS PEE IN YOUR SOUP!”

  • Harry

    Man, the first one is just mind-boggling. I like how after (presumably) sitting down and asking themselves the question “How should we present Christ to those who have never met Him?” the result is something approaching Lovecraftian horror:
    “GOD EXISTS, AND HE HATES YOU AND HAS CURSED YOU, AND WILL SEND YOU TO ETERNAL SUFFERING. BOW BEFORE THIS TERRIFYING ENTITY IN ORDER TO APPEASE ITS WRATH.”
    But good work exposing the terrible lie of “God loves you.” Can’t have people getting the wrong idea.

  • Jason Hall

    I wonder how that guy in the picture gets his snakes to obey the sign behind him that says, “No Backbiting.”

  • Allison Grace

    We thought we were so clever, canvassing neighborhoods with fake surveys and leaving Chick tracts if they were Catholic and “Five spiritual laws” or “Romans Road to Salvation” if anything but independent, fundamental KJV Baptists. So embarrassing.

  • FW Ken

    We used to put them in napkin holders with a few napkins in front of them. My only excuse is that the anti-Catholic hadn’t come out yet.

  • Charles Geter

    Definitely got some Bioshock: Infinite vibes from these. I also like the websites that say the Catholic Church is actually Satanic, proceeding to make completely asinine arguments against straw men. Sad.

  • Rebecca Fuentes

    I wonder what sort of relationship these folks have with their dads, if this is how they think we should relate to God the Father.

  • Tom

    How dare you profane something wonderful like Bioshock: Infinite by comparing it to these nitwits?

  • http://arkanabar.blogspot.com/ Arkanabar

    As I said in my post on waiting tables (http://arkanabar.blogspot.com/2008/05/on-serving-because-its-annoying-me.html), any waiter would rather wait on a generous pimp than a stingy preacher. And I was absolutely NOT going to visit a church populated by such stingy jerks. (Lots of these tracts have contact info for the church added with an ink stamp.)


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