Kirk Cameron shares his testimony of how he became a Christian.
Welcome back to weigh the master, It’s great to have you with us. I’m sure you’ve all noticed by now that Atheism has been taking the world by storm. In fact, there is a new sort of breed of smooth, sophisticated media savvy atheists that are invading every sector of our society and amongst them, believe it or not are some big celebrities? Well today we have a big celebrity with us who was once there, he’s a familiar face to all of you because he used to be one of the hosts of Way the Master, he’s back with us again Mr Kirk Cameron. Hey, now people, people, I don’t think off the bat when they were watching you on growing pains would have associated you with Atheism, but that’s a part of your story, Tell us about it, man. So when I was growing up we didn’t go to church, but I don’t remember my family ever having conversations about God and if you had asked me, I would have said I would be in the category of an atheist at 16 years old, 17 years old. But I wasn’t a reasoned atheist, I wasn’t like the atheist you here today, like uh, who, who are some of the famous ones today other than Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris sam smith. But I don’t know that Sam smith, He’s the he’s the singer, I think I caught my Atheism, it was by contagion, it was my science teacher, it was a history teacher, it were people who would say that. Well that’s just a fairy tale, you know, I thought that jesus was part of a different trinity as an atheist, the tooth fairy, the easter bunny and God. And uh it wasn’t until someone took me to church and I heard the gospel preached and I started asking questions to someone who actually had answers that it really got me thinking and changed my whole perspective and why did you go to church? I didn’t go to church, I’ll be honest with you. It was because it wasn’t because I was interested in God, I was interested in the girl who invited me to church and I figured that if she and her family went to church on sunday, I better go to or her daddy had never, never let me talk to her again. Isn’t it amazing? There’s always, there’s always a pretty girl in the every guy’s conversion. Isn’t there a damsel in distress? That’s always the beauty is always there. And yet the Lord used it in your life. What what was the reaction of like the people that knew you? I mean, was there a drastic change because here you were, I mean basically you were at the height of your success and fame. Growing pains was huge hit, especially back then before cable tv was massive like it is today. How did people react? I mean obviously there must have been a dynamic on the set. How do the actors respond to you becoming a christian? They all in unison said, tell me more, tell me more what would I do to be saved now didn’t quite go down like that. I think that when I started demonstrating some different behavior, like I wasn’t cussing and swearing and I wasn’t joining in on some of the raunchy jokes that I normally would have been leading or or piling in on, I think they thought, well what’s going on? And as he got a standard that he’s now sort of perched upon looking down on the rest of us, I’m guessing, but that I think is what motivated some of the reactions, which was uh you know, you’d see the Hollywood, true Hollywood stories or entertainment and it would be like Cameron Born again causing trouble on the set, flexing, celebrity, muscle firing actresses, none of that happened, but I think it makes for good ratings and I think there was genuine concern on the part of the cast and the producers, what has he gotten into, here’s a 17 year old kid who is in a very influential position. All of our jobs revolve around a couple of key characters on the show, Kirk being one of them and is he getting into something that is really gonna take him to looney town and if it is, we need to stop that because A we care about Kirk and B we care about the show and its longevity. So I think there was healthy concern aside from the spiritual battle that I’m sure was going on. But I was trying to take the moral high road. I wanted to please God, genuinely. And I think sometimes that got misunderstood and sometimes I just didn’t handle it gracefully. So 17 year old, it’s you’re you’re young buck in there with the with the pistols of of the 10 Commandments. And you know, if you don’t know what you’re doing, you can you can upset some people. Would you handle things differently now if you went back as a mature adult and have that experience again, Are you referring to my my my salted it was trying to find a taxi. I of course, I think I would have of course I would, but at 17 years old, you’re young, pup, your unfinished. I had just gotten saved. And and that was God sanctifying me through a process of of sending down some roots deep into my theological soil so that I could weather some of the storms that would come later. I see that now. I couldn’t see it then. Yeah. But you know, let me say though, honestly, and of course, you know, there was a saying that that says I’d much rather tame a zealot than try to rouse the dead man. You know, and you know, there’s something refreshing about that because you were demonstrating even though again, there’s there’s some things you would do different. You were demonstrating the new birth. You were demonstrating the break between light and darkness. You couldn’t be comfortable in light of who you were, you had to pursue the Lord and that manifests itself and changes in life. Yeah, it really doesn’t. And I’m so grateful for it. You know, sometimes people would say things like Kirk, you know, um do you do you do you do you feel like you missed out on some great projects because of your faith in the different direction that you took after you left Hollywood? And I never feel that I left Hollywood. I never feel like I turned my back on Hollywood because still today I’m able to be a part of projects that reach a lot of people and I look back now and I said, wow, God saved me from so much. Not only did I get saved, saved, like saved, saved, but I also was saved from going down the roads of so many of my peers, my friend boner on growing pains, he committed suicide. We believe uh you know, Corey Feldman, Corey Hain, others that were my friends, we interviewed for the same roles together have experienced tragedy and pain that I was spared from and I think it had so much to do with taking a road less traveled and it came with it some challenges, but it also turned out for my good and I’m so grateful for that and and and I wish more would go that way. Speaking of that. Good, tell us about this. My favorite saying that that’s how you can go anywhere you want. But speaking of that. But tell us about your first audition for growing pains. I think it’s really fascinating. So my first audition for growing pains was my only audition for growing pains. Uh, but I went into the audition room late because I wanted to play basketball and ride bikes with my friends. I was 14 years old and my mom says, you get inside of that audition room right now. We just drove an hour and a half in traffic, go in there. She’s brushing my hair and tucking in my shirt. I ran inside and the auditions were over and I said, my mom’s gonna kill me. Would you please let me audition? And and they said like when they said, the producer says, they’ll see you. And so I go inside and I auditioned and I left and I got a call back and they said, the producers want to take you to the network they wanna see. And, and I know that it was a comedy. I did not know that it was a comedy. And it’s funny you say that because the producer reminded me that when I went into the audition, after I was all done reading these jokes and funny lines that everybody had written for me to say, I looked at the producer and said, is this, is this supposed to be a comedy or what? And they thought I was just being a wise guy and it’s like, hey, that’s awesome. Well man, Mark you, I mean you and I, we grew up in the same generation when growing pains was hot. And honestly, it’s so weird to even be sitting here with you now, Kirk, it’s surreal because we grew up watching you on tv, we saw your poster on just about every girl’s, you know, walls in their rooms when we were growing up, what are you doing in the rooms? And I know I said that I’m like, wait a minute, come across, right, But Kirk, how big was the sitcom back then? How big was a sitcom? That’s it. Yeah, I don’t even know what to liken it to today. You couldn’t say that it was the biggest sitcom ever, but the difference was, you didn’t have netflix, you didn’t have hulu, you didn’t have amazon prime, you didn’t have cable, What you had was broadcast networks like abc Cbs and NBC. And those are really the only three channels that had big deal tv shows. So that was Happy Days. That was all in the family. That was growing pains. Full house diff’rent strokes family ties. It was all of those shows. And so you consequently had tens of millions of people who would watch one of three shows at any given time on a weekday. So if you were Tuesday night at 8:00, there was only two other shows that were competing with you. Really? And we were the family show on abc and you were the Justin Bieber of the day. Thank you. He was the man. No, but Kirk. And what was it like for you though? Um handling that as a, as a young teenager, you got all this fame, all this notoriety and you know, you’ve probably got everyone sort of walking to your drumbeat. No one wants to upset you. I mean, how did you handle that as a young guy being in the limelight? Cause you you really didn’t enjoy the limelight at the outset? I think it was, it was awkward at the beginning then it got to be fun and I got to go to all the parties and I could, You know, walk up and talk to pretty much any girl that I that I had the courage to talk to and she would talk to me. So it was pretty exciting for a 14 year old, 15 year old young guy. You remember what that was like? And it was strange when someone asked me for my autograph for the very first time. I thought they were kidding, I thought they were mocking, but I thought, wow, this is, this is for real And it and it was lots of fun, but you know what I’m so grateful for and I’m not trying to be super spiritual. Uh the show started when I was 14 years old. It really got popular when I was maybe 16, 17. And that’s right when the Lord saved me. And so right at the sort of the, I guess it would have been the fork in the road where I could have gone headlong down a path that would have led to sex, drugs, rock and roll and everything that could have turned out for my from my bad, my, you know, my my going down the road a bit bad. It was the time when God opened my eyes and and brought me to a place where I wanted to live a life that was really pleasing to the Lord. Because I knew that As Ray said, 10 out of 10 people die. The ultimate statistic. And it was thinking about death and the and this and the certainty of that and the beauty of creation. And my love for science that made me get serious about getting to the bottom of the question if God is there and all this is evidence staring me in the face. Then. I’ve ignored it. I’ve been arrogant and I’ve got to do something about it, wow. And it’s wonderful to look back at the hand of God in your life. I I love the movie. It’s a wonderful life jimmy Stewart. We he didn’t exist. He goes back and he didn’t exist. And you think of if you hadn’t showed up for that audition and said, mom, I’m not doing it. If or if Mark Spence hadn’t given you hell’s best kept secret, had different lives would be of each of us. And we often talk about that the miracle hand of God is timing. It’s just, it’s mind blowing and faith building. I agree with you. Now, of course you could, you could talk to an atheist who would look back and say yes, you know, the miracle hand of evolution that caused that whale to evolve into a horse, you know, where would we be without that? But I think that’s what what God has given us those eyes of faith to be able to look and see the unmistakable hand of a loving God and a creator. And to remind me at least that of all the great plans that I have hatched in my mind, most of them have never really come to pass the ones that actually uh made a difference. We’re God’s plans that I never had in mind meeting my wife, who would have thought I’d meet a beautiful actress from buffalo new york on a set in Hollywood California, who would have thought that an atheist in L. A. Would become a believer and meet up with a crazy kiwi from new Zealand. And that would lead to all of this here today, it’s so good and you know Kirk, when when we look at what it is that you may in people’s eyes have given up, you said you don’t walk away from Hollywood, Hollywood kind of walked away from you because of course you had a new standard and you had a new master, so to speak. Um but when you look at it, it’s like what what what is it that we’re not willing to give up for the sake of christ, You know, before I got saved as you guys know, I was a rap artist and had some big producers that had signed me on, they produced some of the top artists in the industry at the time. I was 15 years old on my way to the big time and smack dab in the middle of it, the Lord opened my eyes and saved me and I walked away from it because the kind of rap I was doing was displeasing to the Lord, it was filthy and I knew I couldn’t be one person on stage another offstage. But I remember people would be shocked when I tell them, I mean there were kids, I was in high school still and they’d be like, what are you? You know, that was every kid’s dream to be a big star, you know, But once you’ve tasted of christ everything pales in comparison, you know, everything becomes a trinket, you know, just a passing thing and so it’s so neat to see that you understand that and it’s hard for people to understand because the scripture says that, you know, the the spiritual things are are foolishness to the loss. Speaking of that, you know, one of the things that I just love about what you did is I don’t remember that she took me to be with your managers in Hollywood for a meeting and they were virtually saying to you, dropped this religion stuff and you wrote them a letter saying if I would have gotten all this sort of terrible trouble, it would be good for my, um, my career. I wish I had a copy of that. I wish I had kept it too. But it was very, very powerful. It was just saying, I don’t want this world, I don’t want what you’re offering, I want to serve God. And I was so proud of you. That’s, that’s so true. And it’s even true today, you know, you could be uh discovered as someone who has been immoral, who’s been unkind, who’s had addiction issues and even harmed a spouse in the past. But if you come clean and say these are my struggles, I, I just want to be honest. There’s so many in Hollywood who will put their arms around you and say, hey, we are one of us and we’re here to help you with all these things. Everyone has their inner demons that they need to work out and there’s still money in you so we can use it. But if you come out and say, hey, I’m struggling with the fact that I believe I’m guilty before a holy God and I love the Lord jesus, the only savior and I believe the word of God. Well that’s not met with as much compassion, tolerance and inclusiveness. Well your letter said I love my family, I love marriage, I love all these things that were wholesome and good and that’s not good as far as Hollywood’s concerned, that’s right. Because I think what that points out is what you said easy is you said I had a new master and I have a new standard but everyone has a master and everyone has a standard. It’s inescapable but those masters are at odds with one another. And so I just chose a new master and I said my master’s better than than than than the old and the old one, the old tyrant. That’s awesome. So Kirk, your, your family didn’t go to church like you said growing up, but how did your conversion impact them? Because now we look down the line, we see where things are at with your your mom, your dad, your sister, what happened? How did that all play out the best I can remember is that after I went to church that first time and and somebody gave me josh McDowell’s book more than a carpenter which is sold. I don’t know how many copies of millions, millions and millions and it opened my eyes to the possibility that it could be intellectually possible that there is a creator and that jesus is who he said he was once I really started pursuing God and going to church, It happened to be at a time when my parents marriage was struggling and my mom then said, well what do you mean, you’re going to church? You know, I’ve always wanted you kids to go to church, but your dad was never really thinking that was a good idea, but then my dad starts going to church thinking it might help with their marriage and then he’s bringing all three of us, all four of us kids to church with him. And my mom says, oh no, you don’t, I’m going to church with you. And that really brought our whole family to a place where we were praying together and thinking about God and his role in our, in our lives Or his lack of of a role in our family. And I believe that that was instrumental in getting my parents back together. This is right around when you were 17, this was 17, 18 years old, that’s right. And and from then your whole family transformed and we see what what Candace is doing and her stand for the Lord and obviously Chelsea. And again, just to revisit that real quickly because you glossed over it, you met Chelsea on the set of growing pains and then you guys got married, was she your girlfriend on the show? She was Mike Seaver’s girlfriend. So I, I stole Mike Seaver’s girlfriend right now from under him so fast, he didn’t even know what happened. And uh I saw her sitting on the this is this is this is unbelievable to talking about the miracle Hand of God. She was sitting on the side of the set as a new actress playing Mike Seaver’s girlfriend and she had some headphones on listening to a cassette player with a cross around her neck. And I said, what are you listening to? Because you’ve never heard of him, It’s a band, I’m sure you’ve never heard of sort of embarrassed. And I said, well give me a try. And she said, Petra was like, I love Petra Power to you when you stand in, that was the spirit West coast, I think with you and Petra was there and I think he said just a moment, I gotta go tell these guys the story. Yeah. And then I later found out after she became my ex girlfriend and Chelsea and I sort of hit it off going to Michael w smith concerts and other things that my mom said to to uh to me that Kirk, you met her about a two years earlier and I said yes, I remember that she was on the set of my sister Candace show full house visiting someone there. And I do remember meeting her. Uh but I didn’t think much of it, She was beautiful, She was like, you know, way outside of my league. And she was there seeing somebody else. But my mom went over to Jody Sweden, one of the other girls on the show. Her mother and said Jody, you know that girl Chelsea, she’s been here for a week visiting someone on the set and you know, she’s more beautiful on the inside than she is on the outside. And if I could pick A girl to marry my son, it would be someone just like I got the chills. Two years later, I meet her like nine months after that we’re engaged and here we’re married now. 27 years. 27 years. That’s awesome. And just to see what the Lord has done with the two of you as you partnered up in ministry and the impact that it’s having, you know, saving marriages and helping parents with their Children. And you know, Kirk, you think about it when you think about what some of the Hollywood couples have um, with the number of divorces behind them and just a life of disaster sadly. And you look at what the Lord has done now, like you’re talking about earlier, it’s the divine hand of God. I often think of that as a believer Mark. I’m sure you do. Where would I be had christ not intervened. Well, I would probably be sharing a cell with Ray. Yeah, I would, I’d be in for counterfeiting because I love million dollar bills and stuff like that. Always. Yes. Yes. We’d all probably be buddies in prison. Mm hmm. Or enemies doing a tv show. Yeah. Inside the prison walls. Well look, we’ve done so much with the way the master and Kirk. Thanks for coming back on again as our special guest. Today. We want to look at some of the old clips like we did in the other program you’re on. Uh There are some of our favorites the clips that we think about sometimes when we’re going through our day. I’m thinking about. I know they’re coming and we may be watching some of those. So let’s check out the first one and reminiscent. Mm hmm creep in the ghetto. Okay. So here we’re gonna go for we’re gonna go for $20. Okay. I gotta get my 20. Alright. No, you gotta first I ask you three questions. You gotta pass the test. Okay. Do you consider yourself to be a good person? You you’re a good person. A good person sometimes. All right, Okay. I’m good and bad. Good and bad. Okay. What’s he got here? Okay. So um can I ask you three questions to see if that’s true? Okay. Um You know the 10 Commandments? Right. Yeah. Okay. 10 Commandments. Um Hello. Um Have you ever have you ever lied? Yeah. Yeah. Okay. What does that make you have you ever stolen something? What does that make you what is it good? No, that’s good. You’re being honest. That’s good. That’s good. So if you have stolen. What does that make you? Here’s the one that got me? I’ll be honest. Here is the one that got me hey hey let let him let him let him hear. And jesus said you heard it that it was said do not commit adultery but I say to you, jesus said whoever looks at a woman to lust after that. Oh yeah, yeah, I can show you in Matthew chapter five he says you have heard it said I’ll show you in my bible everything is talking to me. Hold on. Um you shall not commit adultery but I say to you whoever looks at a woman to lust after her has committed adultery already with her in his heart. Have you ever done that? So tell me your name again, Mario Mario. So Mario, by your own admission, you’re a lying thief and an adulterer at heart. And when you think about black sands, Okay, let me talk about that in a minute. Let me finish this first. Okay, a lying thief and an adulterer at heart and that’s only three of the 10 commandments. I’m guilty of those two and the same as you. Oh man Kirk, you must have really been thinking, what did I get myself? I look at that and I think man, I could’ve got shanked, I could have got killed right there and you know what you didn’t see in the video. Was that just before the clip started, I had gone up to to get their attention and the director came over and said Kirk, your your battery is dead in your mic pack, Oh my goodness! What are you saying this to me right now, I’ve got four gang members looking at me and and they’re they’re redoing my battery while I’m standing there looking at these guys like nothing to see here, pay no attention to the man who is revealing that this is all on camera with a microphone. But they went along with it and had had a good conversation. Yeah, they were, yeah. And and it ended really well and you know, we have almost, I think Mark, almost a million views on that, don’t we? On youtube. We do. And the funny thing is one of those guys that tried to stop you from talking, ended up supposedly becoming a christian and scott. I remember that ended up going out and seeing the guy, he was holding a sign about being pro life, this is what God can do. It’s a guy that was interrupting you. That’s right, jesus did not say that. Yeah, yeah. What do you think about black sabbath and Hitler? I probably done that a million times. Seriously? Yeah, but Kirk, what were you feeling, man? I mean, you’re talking to these gang members, this was newer for you. Yeah, I look at that now and I think what I was that’s crazy! Um lunatic, lunatic, but I think what gave me such a sense of calm and this is I think this would be helpful for people watching us right now. Is that I knew that I would lose in a fight to all of these guys and I had no intention of fighting them. I had no intention of being contentious, whatever because I would lose. I knew that I was bringing them something that could help them, like a doctor bringing a cure to a patient and that’s all I needed to do was help them diagnose their own problem. So I felt I’m not gonna get in their face. I’m not going to challenge them even though I did a little bit there. I was just there to say, hey, Would you consider yourself to be a good person? And I don’t know if it was in the clip, but we were offering them I think $10 or $20 for anyone who could pass the good person test. And so I think these guys were were intrigued and hooked by the bait of a gift and they went along with me and at the end of that I wasn’t gonna I wasn’t gonna fight him. And at the end they thanked you and they loved it. They did. Yeah. Alright. We’ve got a guy got saved. Oh, he did. He got saved. All right. We’ve got another clip for you. This one’s quick. But check it out Kirk. What are you doing hiding behind that bush? I’m a scared. You’re scared. I’ve never done this before. I’m nervous. Are you the lion in the Wizard of Oz? Right? Yeah, that was an episode about the, the icy waters of personal relate create convict reveal or something right there. Yeah. Okay. We got one more guys. I don’t want to miss this. We’ve got to get into the program. This one is ah, one of my favorites. Watch this. Yeah. Tell me what happens after somebody dies. What do you think happens? What I think happened after somebody die, man, I think that, you know, like you sleep like you lay down like on some real stuff, you lay down, you go to sleep. You know what I’m saying? And you at ease with yourself. You don’t even, you don’t even feel nothing. See nothing and none of that. That’s cool. I think that that’s what death like, I think it’s like, like if I’m standing here right now, somebody ran up on me and put it into my head and blew my brains out right now? Boom, I’m gone. I’m out of here. I would never feel it. I never feel it. I’d just be out of here. Where do you get your information from? Okay. From life experiences? You’ve had that experience? Yeah. You’ve been killed basically. Yeah. From life experiences. And that’s where he learned that from? My love it. Oh, and then later he went on and you asked him, hey, what about any, do you ever read your bible. He says, yeah man, revelation leviticus And he’s like get up on some revelation and then Holla at me. That was awesome. Well thanks for joining us again. Friends, You can see the fun we’re having. Make sure to come back again next time we hope this episode of Wave the Master has inspired you to share the message of eternal life. You can watch our award winning movies such as the Atheist Delusion freely on our website where you’ll also find articles, videos and audio messages as well as books, Dvds, gospel tracts and other resources to help you share your faith Biblically and effectively make sure to visit Living Waters dot com today.