Engaging Conversations, “What is it?” Living Waters new Pro Life Movie, with Mark Spence:
Looking to sharpen your skills of debate and gain insight into the power of apologetics? You’re at the right place. We’re joined by the insightful Mark Spence from Living Waters, ready to unpack the importance of asking questions to engage in meaningful discussions. We examine Jesus’ example in the Gospels of using questions as conversation tools, particularly in addressing misinformation or opposing viewpoints.
Transitioning into more sensitive topics, we dive headfirst into the pro-life debate and abortion. Join us as we explore how to navigate these difficult conversations with empathy and understanding. Mark throws light on the impact Living Waters’ new film “What Is It?” can have in spreading the message. We also address the Black Lives Matter movement and the necessity of acknowledging that all lives matter, including the unborn.
In the final stretch of our conversation, we switch gears to the need for equipping our churches and individuals with the knowledge and tools needed for evangelism and apologetics. Mark explains how films like these can ignite discussions on topics such as abortion. As we wrap up, we explore the concept of biblical citizenship and how it can benefit modern America. We also share resources for you to delve deeper into these topics. Get ready for an enlightening discussion that will arm you with tools for engaging in these conversations.
Air Date: 09/26/2023
Guest: Mark Spence
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Welcome to the intersection of faith and the culture is Wall Builders. Thanks so much for joining us today. My name is Rick Green, I a former Texas legislator and America’s Constitution coach. I’m here with David Barton and Tim Barton. Tim Barton is a national speaker and pastor and president of Wall Builders. David Barton is the founder of Wall Builders and America’s premier historian. Tons of books and videos and fantastic material that will educate you, equip you, inspire you, all available right now at WallBuilders. com . That’s WallBuilders. com , and then our radio site WallBuildersLive. com . That’s where you can get archives of the program. If you’re a first-time listener today, you can go back in there and find some of those Good News Fridays to encourage you, some Foundations of Freedom Thursdays to dig deep into the principles of the nation as we answer your questions about those things. Then, monday through Wednesday, typically we have an interview with someone that’s out there on the front lines that’s influencing the culture in a positive way, restoring biblical principles, restoring those things that will make our nation once again be a great nation and a blessing to the people of America but also people around the world. That’s the really cool thing about applying biblical worldview to a culture is that you’re truly salt and light. You not only preserve the culture, you not only preserve the meat, you’re actually bringing out the best flavor, you’re making it the best that it can be, and people thrive and they have abundance and they have blessings. Deuteronomy describes all of this. When we do things God’s way, we get, not only is it right, it works best and we get great blessings out of it. So if we do that as a nation, we are blessed here, but also then we become a blessing to people around the world, and that’s what we’re restoring through Wall Builders, we’re helping you and your communities to be the catalyst for restoring those biblical values and constitutional principles. Hope that you’ve signed up as one of our Constitution coaches, hosting the classes there in your home or at your church. There’s all kinds of ways that you can be involved. Check it out at WallBuilders. com and we’ll have links there today to all the different things that we’re going to talk about from the things available to you at WallBuilders. com and also the things available to you from our special guest. Alright, David and Tim, a little later in the program, Mark Spence will be with us from Living Waters and of course that’s Ray Comfort and E. Z. and all those guys. They do such a great job at taking some of these hot topics of the day and taking biblical perspective on it and just frying people’s brains with it. I mean, they always go on the street and they ask these great questions and it makes people think. It’s like you could see the brain just kind of rewiring going, oh wow, I never thought about it that way, and so we love those guys. They’ve got a new movie coming out, What Is It?” And we’ll be talking about that when Mark’s on with us a little later in the program.
Guys, I was this weekend at an event up in Ohio speaking at a church and I was having dinner with some people from the church. One of the questions they asked me is how can we help people navigate, being able to engage and have conversations better? You know, people have gained some of this information. They’ve done Biblical Citizenship, they’ve done Constitution Alive and they are needing to be encouraged. How do they step out, how do they do things? And I talked to them a lot about apologetics. I am a huge fan of apologetics and worldview and I think people need to study that, they need to get into that and would help them and equip them so much. And I gave them a couple examples of some places I had talked and then afterwards I pointed out sometimes some of the dumbest questions I get come from professors and the reason that, even though we have some very good friends that are professors and there’s some some of the brightest and some of the best people I know have a PhD, a professorship somewhere, but also some of the dumbest people I’ve interacted with are also professors. There’s a pretty wide spectrum on that list. Nonetheless, now I was talking to them about having a conversation with these professors and navigating their questions and they were saying you know, that’s, it’s really great. I wish, you know, we could do a better job of that. And really my thought was that one of the best ways to gain this, where I learned to start having these conversations and asking questions, was actually watching things from Living Waters with Ray Comfort. I remember when I got his book, Hell’s Best Kept Secret and I listened to that teaching and I think was back in the 90s. We had a friend his name is Bill Jack and he did Worldview Academy and and he had a series of questions. And we would learn to ask questions and being able to engage in conversation and asking questions I think really is a bit of a forgotten art. Where so often we’re trying to think how can we help convince somebody they’re wrong, when usually we’re not… It’s not our wisdom that convinces somebody they’re wrong. It is usually once they have to defend an indefensible position that they realize their position is indefensible, but because people haven’t really engaged in conversation and haven’t, oftentimes, in a loving way, just said hey, so what do you think about this? Can you explain this? Well, why do you think this? And this is a Very common thought, even for scripture, Dad, y ou’ve talked about this a lot. We’ve actually, I think even on radio, guys, I think we’ve talked about it. If you read the Gospels, Jesus asked a lot of questions through the Gospels. There’s more than 300 questions that Jesus asks through the four Gospels and it’s also worth noting that if you study the Gospels, Jesus doesn’t answer a lot of questions. More times than not the things that we remember, when Jesus was asked a question, he answered their question with a question, right? Where famously, he says well, John’s baptism, what was it of God or of man? Right, as he’s answering the Pharisees who are challenging and questioning him. But the reason questions were important is they challenge people to think through the position they have. They challenge… it challenges people to be able to process the position on the side they’re arguing or articulating. And Ray Comfort and Living Waters ministry has been so good at helping engage in conversations and guys, now you know, for more of our modern era people are… they’ve seen Steven Crowder do his Change My Mind segments when he’ll do things in the street. We’ve seen things from PragerU, whether it’s a Will Witt or somebody else do street interviews. We’ve seen Jesse waters go to the street and just ask some questions. But really I think Ray comfort was one of the first ones in and especially on the Christian side to have much more of these conversations on the streets and for so many people, we will see people very passionate about issues, but so often they’re passionate in their ignorance and they don’t even realize that they’re arguing for something that is not logical, that doesn’t line up with truth or reality, but because nobody’s ever really talked to them in a way that’s challenged them to defend their position, they don’t have that revelation or realization. And so when somebody at times asks how can we do a better job of helping talk with whether it’s our kids who are in college or whether it’s students or our co-workers, when they are trying to figure out what’s the best way to navigate having these conversations, I genuinely think one of the best things you can do is go back and watch some of Ray Comforts, not quite man on the streets, but almost that notion where he just starts talking to people and you see what he does. They’re not gotcha questions, but they are questions designed to open a conversation and they’re really… they’re again, they’re not loaded questions, but it’s just questions about what is truth, what is reality, and letting people give an answer, and when they don’t have a good answer, he offers some suggestions that they talk through, and so I’m very excited about this new movie they have coming out. I haven’t seen it yet, Rick, I really didn’t even know it was there until I found out we were lining up this interview and I thought, okay, I need to go to their website, I need to watch this interview, and so that’s gonna be my homework today After this program. I’m going to go watch their interview because they’ve done such a good job for so many years, helping show how to engage on tough topics and issues from a loving Christian perspective, and you see that just having conversations and asking questions leads to transformation from so many people who are on the wrong side of the issue.
Yeah, it just reminds me so much of the 180 movie and how that changed people’s minds on the abortion issue. And What Is It is similar to that. It’s almost like a sequel to that. So, What Is It? We’re about to find out. Stay with us, folks. Mark Spence, our special guest, when we come back from the break, you’re listening to WallBuilders.
This is Tim Barton from WallBuilders, with another moment from American history. As the American War for Independence began, the president of Yale was the Reverend Naftali Daggett. When New Haven, the home of Yale, came under attack, about 100 citizens rushed out to meet the British. The Reverend Daggett galloped by them on horseback, his clerical robes flowing behind him in the wind, and he took up a solitary position atop a hill. The 2,500 British soon put the townsfolk to flight, but the Reverend Daggett continued to stand alone, firing down on the advancing troops. A British officer confronted him what are you doing there, you old fool? If I let you go, will you ever fire again on the troops of his majesty? Nothing more likely, was the preacher’s reply. America’s early pastors personally confronted danger and courageously led their communities. For more information on Pastor Daggett and other colonial patriots, go to WallBuilders.
Welcome back to WallBuilders. Thanks for staying with us. Great to have Mark Spence with us. New movie from Living Waters out, What Is It? Well, What Is It? Mark, thanks for coming on, man. Hey, love, of course, everything Ray Comfort does. We’re just big fans and often talk about the good work from Living Waters. And so new movie, What Is It? And in good Living Waters format, you guys took to the streets, got some great interviews and have put together an answer to the question, what is it? So what inspired this particular movie and what do you hope happens with it?
Yeah, no, that’s a great question. You know, I think COVID was one of the greatest things that happened to me and my family, because I have three kids in college and it forced them to come back home and homeschooling my five kids growing up, I kind of forced them to learn a trade and in the trade for my kids, I taught them everything Adobe related and dealing with cameras. And my son looked at me and said hey, dad, let’s go hit the streets and talk to people about BLM. Well, I went out there and I saw a guy holding a BLM flag and I asked him hey, do all Black Lives Matter? And he said oh, absolutely. I said what about the Black Lives in the womb? How do you feel about that? And he was silent. And I said well, do all Black Lives Matter? Are you pro-life, pro-choice? I mean, where do you stand? And he was silent. And from that conversation right there I realized we needed to get into a conversation and address society on the subject of abortion, because all lives mattered at that point, but no life in the womb seemed to matter amongst the people who were saying, only certain people mattered. So that’s kind of where it was birthed from. It was my son who said, Dad, let’s hit the streets.
Well, in a typical living waters fashion, you see the kind of brain fry in people’s heads when you start asking the questions and you ask the right questions and all of a sudden they’re stuck and they end up changing their position. I remember Ray doing the 180 movie years ago and same thing. It just causes people to change their position. And so you guys went and you really, you had people that were a little bit, I mean, confrontational with you at the beginning, and the more you ask the questions, the more it makes them really change their perspective on what it actually is in the womb. And this is the heart of the pro-life debate, right? I mean, is it life or is it not? What is it in the womb? And once you get that question answered, you have to become pro-life.
Yeah, that’s exactly right. The way I explain it, Rick, is imagine waking up early on a Saturday morning to your son calling out to you from the other room with a simple question Daddy, daddy, may I kill it? Now you have no context, right? So you’d probably respond back with hey, Charlie, what are you talking about? What is it that you wanna kill? Now, Charlie responds back and he says hey, Dad, there’s a big cockroach on the wall. Well, at that point you would say, son, kill that cockroach, clean it up before mama wakes up and don’t show your sister Sally, right?
Of course he’s going to show his sister Sally, Man. He’s going to chase her around the house with it! What are you talking about? no, I got your point, yes, good.
If, on the other hand, if Charlie responds back and says hey, Dad, it is my sister Sally, right? Sister Sally is driving me crazy, can I kill her? Right at that point you would wake your spouse up in a frenzy, say, hey, get a psychiatrist on the phone. Our little Charlie has turned into Chucky. Right? So this same thing applies to the pre-born. Rick, so before we can answer the question what is, or whether we may kill the pre-born, we need to answer the question well, what is the pre-born? And so we hit the streets and, using science, philosophy and, most importantly, using theology, using the Bible because this is a gospel-centric issue we hit the streets and we talk to people. The heart of the problem is the problem of the heart. So we wanted to make sure that Christ was elevated, and that’s the goal of this film.
Well, encourage everyone to watch it, as you will be entertained, but at the same time, it’s going to hit you in the gut, too. It’s good stuff, as always from Living Waters, and you guys are always also good. I love the promotional tools. So you’ve got these cool cards people can hand out to get them to go watch it as well. But first, how can people… what’s the best way to… just go to YouTube and watch it there? Go straight to LivingWaterscom? What do you recommend?
Yeah, so the title of it is What Is it? And I would recommend going to LivingWaters. com and it’ll be right there on the homepage, just in case the YouTube overlords take it down off of YouTube. We’ll make sure that it’s always on our site.
It’s so funny, I was texting with Ray about it because I went to YouTube to watch the whole thing and they gave me essentially a warning, not a warning, they have their own little pop-up now that says abortion, health information, it’s the procedure. Yada, yada, yada, yada, yada yada to try to water it down. So you’re right about overlords. I mean, they’re literally interrupting your free speech in a way with that, but it is what it is. We’re dealing with that, fighting that as best we can. We’ve got to get the message out any way that we can, and that’s why, like you said, go to LivingWaters. com . That way, if they get canceled off YouTube, folks, they’ll have other ways for you to watch it. And so now tell me about the cards so people can get these promo cards and hand them out. Is that a time sensitive thing? What’s the goal there?
Well, listen, we just showed the film to 2,500 people at Jack Hibbs Church in Chino Hills and that same question was asked and he said listen, there’s no need to reinvent the wheel here. You simply need to hand out the card or send people to the website LivingWaters. com and people will watch it and they will get the answers themselves, because I answer the top 10 questions out on the street. You know what if the mother’s life is in danger? What if the child is deformed? The world is overpopulated, so abortion should be legal in the case of rape or incest. So all of those are answered right there, so that you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. You can watch me dialogue with the people out on the street so you can get those cards or you can just simply go to the website. Both are available at our website.
LivingWaters. com . Now, you know, usually, Mark, when we promote a movie and talk about a new movie that’s about, we talk about getting with other people to watch the movie as well. Is that something you recommend, or people you know showing this at their churches or kind of how can we… There’s just something special, I think, when you do this as a group, because then you talk about it afterwards. Do you guys have any recommendations on that or tools for that?
Yeah, listen, we have gotten amazing feedback on this film. So many people are saying that this is the best film that we have ever produced and it really just kind of fell in our laps, if you would. We’ve had more than 200 churches across the world that are showing this in their sanctuary to their whole group. We’ve been getting pictures and videos of people that are interested and are watching it, that are engaged in watching it. But, yeah, from home fellowships to family fellowships, to family groups, to churches, small and large, everybody’s showing this because they’re demonstrating the importance of engaging in this dialogue in their culture and how they need to equip their body and to inspire them to reach the society in which they live. So, absolutely get together with anybody and everybody. What I’ve been saying to people is hey, watch the first 30 seconds. That’s it. I think you’re going to be hooked after the first 30 seconds and if you watch the first 30 seconds, I think you’re going to stay a little bit longer and you’re going to feel that compassion to share with other people.
Amen, amen, no doubt about it. Mark, it seems like, I’ve been in this pro-life fight since I was a legislator 25 years ago and in almost every instance whether it’s getting a mom to watch the sonogram before she goes in or whatever it might be it just seems like in almost every instance, once someone really thinks about this and they actually see what’s happening in the womb and they realize that it is life, it changes everything. You guys even quote, use the Ronald Reagan quote I always used about not assuming that it’s a deer there in the brush or assuming that the trash bag is trash in the road. You don’t assume that if it is your friend in the brush or it is an animal cat or dog or whatever in the bag in the road, you would regret having killed it. So I think the life, is it life question, what is it? It’s a brilliant way to present this and to get it in front of people. So really thankful that you guys are doing this and want to promote it. Get everybody that’s listening to go watch it and then to share it and, like you said, have a watch party at your church or in your living room or your home or whatever it might be. Mark, no… Ray didn’t ask me to do this. You didn’t ask me to do this, but I know Living Waters is able to do things like this because of people donating, and we’re really big around here on saying lives, fortunes and Sacred Honor is what it takes to preserve liberty for a nation and fortunes, we don’t have to give it all, but we can give it a little bit. At LivingWaters. com they can donate and it’s tax-deductible donation to a nonprofit, right?
That is exactly right. We are a 501c3 organization and all the money that comes in just goes right back into the ministry. We don’t take lavish salaries by any means. I think it was Randy Alcorn that said God does not bless us financially to raise our standard of living, but to raise our standard of giving. Ray Comfort has taught me some things over the years, as I’ve been with him for 23 years. He told me, Mark, I’ve not kept one penny of any honorarium that has ever come in. It’s, he desires to be a giver and, if anything, man, we want to cross that finish line, knowing that this is not a playground but a battleground, and we want to push it all forward. So LivingWaters. com
So good, man. Well, you guys are doing incredible work. We want to support you and we want our listeners to support you as well, LivingWaters. com , LivingWaters. com , not only for the movie, but also to come alongside them, lock shields with them. Make that donation today so they can keep it changing hearts and minds out there. Mark, y’all, keep up the great work, brother. Look forward to seeing you soon. Stay with us folks, we’ll be right back with David and Tim Barton.
Hey guys, we want to let you know about a new resource we have at WallB uilders, called the American story. For so many years, people have asked us to do a history book to help tell more of the story that’s just not known or not told today. And, we would say, very providentially, in the midst of all of the new attacks coming out against America, whether it be from things like the 1619 project that say America is evil and everything in America was built off slavery, which is certainly not true or things like even the Black Lives Matter movement, the organization itself, not the statement Black Lives Matter, but the organization that says we’re against everything that America was built on and this is part of the Marxist ideology. There’s so many things attacking America. Well, is America worth defending? Well, what is a true story of America? We actually have written and told that story, starting with Christopher Columbus, going roughly through Abraham Lincoln. We tell the story of America not as a story of a perfect nation or a perfect people, but the story of how God used these imperfect people and did great things through this nation. It’s a story you want to check out. WallB uilders. com , The American Story.
We’re back on WallB uilders. Thanks for staying with us. Thanks to Mark Spence for joining us today from Living Waters and we will have links today to the movie. What is it? You can actually share it with friends and family. Another great way, as Tim, you were saying before the break or before the interview to get these questions in front of people. So some people may be thinking, well, man, I’d like to ask those kind of questions, but man, I’m not good at that. Or I don’t know how to start that conversation. Or here’s a great way to start the conversation. Send them the movie and ask them what they think of it and begin discussing these things. Apologetics, like you said, Tim, that’s what this is all about, and we’re so ill equipped as a church right now to do these things. But individuals can help solve that, and you mentioned some of the folks that are out there. You know Frank Turek and others. There’s lots of folks that have some good training on these things. We need to be doing more of this and of course, that’s what we do with why we send people to High Point and the Leader’s Academy up in Hot Springs, why we do Patriot Academy, why we have the summer intern program and all the things we do throughout the summer with Teachers and pastors and everybody else. It’s all about equipping them to influence the world around them and influence this next generation for sure.
You know, it is so cool when I heard them say that they’re doing this in churches, with church groups. Now, those aren’t groups and people that need to be converted to a pro-life position, but what it’s doing is, it is equipping those people to be able to affect those around them. And this is one thing we have definitely seen in recent years is the church is not doing a real good job of equipping People with the beliefs that church people hold. That and biblical beliefs. And I recall and I think I mentioned before, I mean back years ago churches all the time used to have training sessions for parenting and training sessions for raising kids and training sessions for budgeting and training sessions for strengthening marriage and all of these things that were designed to help equip you and help train you to be able to help others around you. And so this in some ways is a throwback to that, and even if you’re already pro-life, you’re a hundred percent pro-life, this is still a really good training because it helps you cross that bridge of how to engage others. You don’t get in a fight, you just ask them questions that maybe they’ve never considered, that they kind of go blank and look at you and they, I’ve never thought of that before. They know what they know and they don’t know what they don’t know, and you can help them know what they don’t know, which will help them change their mind. So I really was impressed with the fact that churches are doing that, now. I hope that is a throwback to the church, starting to a better job of what the Bible says the church is supposed to do, and that’s to equip people for the work of the ministry, to help equip people to be able to minister to others outside the church. That is the role of the church. The role of church is not just to get you there and have a service somewhere. It’s to equip you for the work of ministry. Every single Christian should be equipped to do ministry work of some time, and I don’t need a full-time ministry thing. I mean like talking to your friends, whether it be at school or peers on on sports or athletic or on a basketball Quarter, wherever you are, that you’re equipped and and you can handle the issues of the day. So I’m really thrilled about that and I would encourage even pro-life groups to grab this and do it themselves, because even a lot of pro-life folks they can use some better approaches, sometimes to the way that they engage others, and just Just asking these simple, innocent questions is a really, really, really effect ive way of doing that.
They showed the conversation. So they show people were responding in different ways A nd it shows them engaging in that conversation. So, right, sometimes our fear is, but what if they ask this question? Or what if they say this? And what if they go that direction? I’m not sure. And it really does give you a broader sense of how the conversation can go, and it also shows a couple things. You’re not going to win every conversation in the sense of winning the person to the side of truth, to the side of Jesus. You’re not going to win every conversation in that regard. But also it shows that in many situations, you can help guide people the truth, where we know in John 8:32 that the truth sets people free, which is ultimately the goal of what we want to see happen in these conversations and helping lead people to truth. So would highly encourage people to go to Living Waters, check out this website, watch this video. You can watch it with me after the show is over. I’m going to go check it out, but really excited for them having this new video.
Alright, we’re out of time for today, folks, it’s been great having you with us talking about a biblical, historical and constitutional perspective. It’s so important for us to be equipped with truth. You know, I run a nonprofit organization with hundreds of thousands of people following what we’re doing, tons of students that come through our programs, 13,000 Constitution Coaches. I want to make sure that that I’m putting the right information in front of them, that we’re training them well, and so I’m constantly looking to learn, whether it’s at conferences or studying different, you know, resources out there. We need to do the same. Pastors need to do the same. We need to make sure we’re getting the right information in front of the people that God has given us the ability to have a voice with and for. Begin to study these things and become a liberty pastor. Make sure that you are a catalyst for a restoration of biblical values and constitutional principles in your community. One of the great tools to do that is Biblical Citizenship in Modern America. Check that out today at WallBuilders. You can get the DVDs and the books there. You can sign up to be a coach for free. We’ll come alongside you and train you and equip you and help you to host that class at your church or in your living room or wherever you want to get people together. But I promise you, you’ll see great hope Come out of those classes. Thanks so much for listening, today. You’ve been listening to WallBuilders.