I've heard many times over and over that the sinner's prayer will lead more souls to hell more than anything else will. And not only have I heard that, but I've run into quite a few people who have grown up and claimed to be Christians because they have said a prayer when they were 5 years old, even though they live like the devil.
I have a friend who I was talking to last week, she isn't a Christian. In fact, she says she is Agnostic, but when we talk about eternity she says, "Well, I got saved long ago, when I was 5, but right now I'm not a Christian. But I'm still saved."
That's what the sinner's prayer does to people. That's a terrifying thing to hear someone say.
She had fallen into the lie that when you say a prayer you become a Christian. So many people have fallen into the lie that if you say a little prayer you will be saved. What saves you is repentance and faith in Christ Jesus. But instead of looking back at the Bible, we have fallen into this heresy.
A lot of times we treat the sinner's prayer just like any other tool for evangelism. And we say, "Well, what if the person doesn't know how to pray? Then can't you lead them?"
Honestly, I don't know how I feel about that. I don't know if it's the best idea to pray for them, I would lean towards saying no. But I know that others would differ.
Considering how much destruction that the sinner's prayer has caused in the church, I would back away from treating it like it is a wonderful tool for evangelism, when in all reality it will lead many souls to destruction.