(Photo: AP Images / File)
Kids as young as seven years of age are not only getting saved but standing at the pulpit preaching the message of salvation in front of congregations and on the streets.
Samuel Boutwell, 7, began preaching after being saved by Jesus when he was only three years old. Son of Baptist evangelist Kendall Boutwell, Samuel delivers messages at Church of the Lord Jesus Christ at Brookhaven in Mississippi and goes around waving and pounding the Bible telling the public to repent and get saved.
"After I got saved, I knew I could try to reach more people to try to get saved," he told ABC's 20/20.
"You can go to heaven or hell," Samuel would shout on the streets. "You need to repent! You don't have to ask your mom or dad. It's up to you."
Meanwhile, Samuels father is next to him responding "amen" and "preach it."
Outside abortion clinics, the young open-air preacher, as his father calls him, shouts, "Don't kill your child! Just give it to somebody else. You don't have to kill it," while wearing a sandwich board that reads "stop sinning."
Boutwell believes it's a divine calling. When asked to preach, Samuel says God tells him what to say right there.
"I know he's divinely inspired if you listen to the messages, the different ones on the different subjects, yes, he's definitely divinely inspired," said Boutwell, according to ABC.
Of more renown and experience is 9-year-old Terry Durham. Dubbed "the lil man of God," the African American kid preacher wears colorful suits and preaches in a more dynamic style, dancing, singing and shouting across the states.
Grandchild of a traveling evangelist, Terry preached his first sermon at the age of four and got licensed two years later, now traveling with the title "minister." His grandmother, Pastor Sharon Monroe, ordained him.
Randall Balmer, an Episcopal priest and preacher and a professor of religion at Barnard College, believes kids are too young and don't have the experience to be a preacher.
"I believe that one's calling as a minister arises out of the crucible of one's experience and there's a certain maturity that comes with that, a certain understanding of the faith that comes with that," said Balmer, according to ABC.
Terry, however, doesn't believe he's too young to preach.
"People say Jesus started at the age of 12," Terry noted. And it's not his grandmother pushing him, he says. His calling as a preacher is also divine.
"It's the power of God that's pushing me," he said.