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Feds seize 'millions' – in gospel tracts
Posted By -NO AUTHOR- On 06/02/2006 @ 7:45 pm In Front Page | Comments Disabled
WASHINGTON — Secret Service agents today threatened a Denton, Texas, evangelist with arrest for counterfeiting and seized 8,300 gospel tracts designed as “million-dollar bills.”
Three Secret Service agents visited the Great News Network offices about 1 p.m. asking staffer Tim Crawford if he was responsible for printing “the million-dollar bills.”
Crawford suggested they talk to his boss, Darrel Rundus, the founder of the organization that trains evangelists from around the country in the techniques of witnessing their faith.
By telephone, Rundus offered his opinion that it was impossible to counterfeit something that wasn’t real – a $1 million bill.
But the agents explained that a woman in North Carolina had attempted to deposit one of the million-dollar bills in her bank account. The address of the Great News Network was on the back, and the Secret Service went into action.
Rundus also explained that his organization had not designed the tracts. They are the work of the Living Waters Ministry of Ray Comfort in Southern California, which distributes millions of them a year.
Before he got off the phone, Rundus was convinced the agents were going to drop their demand for the Great News Network’s tracts.
But later, he reports, the agents again demanded them from Crawford, threatening him with arrest for “concealing evidence.” Rather than face arrest, Crawford turned over the approximately 8,300 million-dollar tracts the group had stored. The agents left a receipt and their business cards.
Comfort told WND he was stunned by the action of the Secret Service and expects agents to visit his offices soon. He said he has no plans to abandon the use of the tracts, which are among the most popular of the many his organization distributes. Living Waters is known for its television program, “The Way of the Master,” and an association with actor Kirk Cameron.
“I’m not going to stop printing them,” Comfort said. “How can you possibly counterfeit something that is not real – a $1 million bill?”
One side of the tract is designed like an imaginary $1 million bill. The other side has the gospel message written around the border. It also includes this message: “The million dollar question: Will you go to Heaven? Here’s a quick test. Have you ever told a lie, stolen anything, or used God’s name in vain? Jesus said, “Whoever looks upon a woman to lust after her has committed adultery already with her in his heart.” Have you looked with lust? Will you be guilty on Judgment Day? If you have done those things God sees you as a lying, thieving, blasphemous, adulterer at heart. The Bible warns that if you are guilty you will end up in Hell. That’s not God’s will. He sent His Son to suffer and die on the cross for you. Jesus took your punishment upon Himself – ‘For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.’ Then He rose from the dead and defeated death. Please, repent (turn from sin) today and trust in Jesus, and God will grant you everlasting life. Then read your Bible daily and obey it.”
The tracts are also clearly marked on the front: “This bill is not legal tender.”
Rundus says he won’t be deterred from distributing the tracts in the future.
“Show me the law we’re breaking,” he told WND. “How can you counterfeit bills that do not exist?”
Rundus suspects the unknown lady in North Carolina didn’t actually try to deposit the tract into her bank account.
“People drop these tracts for others to see and read,” he explained. “That’s the purpose of it. I have no way of knowing, but if I were going to guess, I would suggest this person just included the tract along with a deposit and someone got offended.”
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