Street Preacher | On Bodies, Physical and Spiritual

On a snowy spring day, five men froze outside of the Union as they took turns preaching to the (largely mobile) masses. Preaching to roaming crowds on a college campus isn’t for the faint of heart, or for the under-clothed.

RIO BERGH | THE SPECTRUM | Preaching to the crowds is tough when they disappear during class time.
RIO BERGH | THE SPECTRUM | Scott Smith (red hat) traveled to NDSU with his five-iron cane and some friends to share his message.

Scott Smith, an ex-headmaster from New England, started school master ministries, and now travels around to universities to preach to any college students who will stop to listen. He believes that college students are being force-fed things that aren’t true, like humans being descended from primitive ancestors, not created by god.

And so Smith preaches deliverance from sin on college campuses, largely in the ivy league, since he believes it is his duty to offer students an alternative. “We want to share the truth that sets men free,” Smith,who has been a full-time missionary and street preacher since 2010, said.

Smith believes the saved will be resurrected into new bodies, largely similar to their old ones; just as Jesus was recognizable after rising from the dead, Smith believes we will be too. “The main difference is that I won’t want to love myself more than my neighbor, and I won’t want to love myself more than god; instead, we will be given a drive to love others more than ourselves,” Smith said.

Smith feels driven to share a particular truth: “I really believe many people have not been told the truth that it was out of love god sent his son into the world. People have this idea that god is just some ogre in the sky — but he’s holy, and we know if he’s good he has to punish sin.”

“We believe man is bipartite — we are a union of the soul and body. We can interact with each other through our physical nature, but our physical body is slated to die. We are trying to help people see the source of death is because we are in a fallen state; but God can regenerate men and women so when we get a new body after the resurrection, we won’t want to sin anymore,” Smith said.

According to Smith, the physical body is a hinderance, not just in a physical context. “The body is inherently flawed now, as a product of the fall,” Smith said. As a man who uses a five-iron for a cane, Smith is aware of the body’s limitations, but he believes we can be changed.

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