Our Rescuer

by BJ Rudge

Just like many of you, I have been following the situation with the soccer team trapped in a cave in Thailand. On the day those boys and their coach walked into the cave, they had no idea what would transpire over the next few weeks. What was meant to be a moment of innocent fun turned into a life and death situation. For days they remained in this cave, desperate and with little hope.  However, because of the courageous and selfless acts of many individuals, they were ultimately rescued from their hopeless situation.

Like this soccer team, we often make decisions in life that at the moment seem innocent and fun yet prove to be destructive. Whether it’s engaging in a certain sinful behavior, or pursuing an unhealthy relationship, we can find ourselves moving deeper into the damaging consequences of an ungodly life.

Maybe you have made decisions that have left you without hope and any ability to save yourself. Fortunately, like this soccer team, you also have a rescuer who willingly put his life on the line to save you. Even though it was ultimately your sinful decisions that placed you in this desperate situation, God in His grace and mercy, sent His Son to rescue you from your sins. As God’s Word states,

“When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners” (Romans 5:6).

Just as these boys are alive today because of their rescuers, we too can experience eternal life because of our Rescuer.

“For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Colossians 1:13, 14).

Miracle Child (Lillian Grace)

by Tabitha Rudge Smith (and Florence Biros)

My husband and I were living in California and always wanted a big family. When we learned a third child was going to join us, we were so thrilled. I called the doctor and was told, “We would like to see you around 10 to 12 weeks in the pregnancy unless you have complications.”

I made my appointment to see the doctor for the first time, when I knew I would be able to hear my baby’s heartbeat. Besides, my morning sickness was so bad with this pregnancy that I couldn’t wait to see the doctor to get something to help alleviate it.
At the appointment, I saw a female doctor who tried to hear the heartbeat, but couldn’t find it. “Sometimes this early – around 10 weeks – the heartbeat is hard to hear. Instead, we’re going to do an ultrasound.”

How exciting, I thought, I can see my baby as well as hear it! That didn’t happen. When they did the ultrasound, the woman looked very solemn and said, “I’m very sorry. There is a pregnancy sac but it is empty.” Then she added, “There are no signs of life.”

I answered, “Well it is early and I could be off a few days.”

She looked at me and declared, “Well you’d have to be off at least 3 weeks.”

In my heart I knew I was not 3 weeks off of my cycle. Her next words cut me to the core, “Why don’t you go home and think about what you want to do – miscarry on your own or have a D&C?”

That weekend I had planned on going on a woman’s retreat. I didn’t feel like going. My husband suggested, “Why don’t you go to help keep your mind off all this?”

I went. By the second night of the retreat, I was so miserable from throwing up and crying that I had to leave during the evening message and run to the restroom.
A sweet, elderly lady asked sympathetically, “Do you have the flu?”

Do I tell her? I contemplated for a minute, then decided I didn’t feel like discussing it. Instead I told her, “I’m pregnant and having a terrible time with morning sickness.”

Taking my hand, she asked “May I pray for you?”

I just need to tell her that there is no baby. Why pray? I agreed, though. She continued to hold my hand and pray, asking God to take away my nausea, bless my pregnancy and then she placed her hand on my womb and said, “Lord, if there is something that needs to be in the womb that is not there, we ask you to place it there.”

At that moment I burst into tears and told her the whole story. She simply smiled, gave me a hug, then walked away.

A few days later I went to see the doctor who said, “I’ll schedule one more ultrasound before scheduling your D&C.” When she placed the ultrasound wand on my stomach, she seemed amazed. She not only heard the heartbeat, but saw a picture of our 11 week old baby in my belly.

We knew that God had performed a miracle and gave us our precious baby. She is now a beautiful, healthy 14-year-old who loves to tell her friends about Jesus.

Wake Up and Watch!

Bill Rudge Ministries received a letter with prophetic perception from Mrs. Valerie Graves, a pastor’s wife from upstate New York, who has read much of what Bill has written over the years, finding the teaching insightful and encouraging. Valerie described her and her husband’s adventurous trip to California, visiting their daughter who is pursuing a PhD at Berkeley. They enjoyed sunny skies and cool breezes as they toured the San Francisco Bay area and surrounding sleepy beach towns. One moment they were relaxing in the lap of luxury and the next they were fleeing for their lives as wildfires ravaged the area.

Some of Valerie’s thoughts:

We were to end our time in California at a lovely house on a vineyard in Sonoma Valley with a spectacular view of the surrounding area. We drove up a long driveway through a vineyard. The front lawn was meticulously landscaped with pathways leading to the front porch where welcoming rocking chairs awaited. There were pomegranate, lemon and apple trees. The inside was gorgeous with large windows to enjoy the beautiful view. It was difficult to take it all in.

That night as I was falling asleep I remember hearing the wind outside picking up, leaves blowing against the window. My husband Charlie and I woke up at five in the morning and went downstairs to make coffee. It was still dark outside. Just as Charlie was reaching for the pot of coffee there was a loud banging on the door. Clearly something must be wrong. Then I heard shouting, “Wake up! Quick, you need to leave now. There is no time to waste.” Within five minutes we were in the car heading away from the beautiful house on the vineyard. As we headed slowly in the opposite direction of the fire in a line of traffic, we could see the sky aglow with the fire which was close.

It was a scary night, and the moment when I realized how serious this fire was, the Lord pressed on my heart to “go back and warn My people.” It became clear the fire I was seeing was a picture of the impending judgment and that it would come suddenly and unexpectedly to all those on the earth who are living lives in the lap of luxury.

Though we don’t see ourselves as rich, we are! We have our own homes, heated in winter and cooled in summer; we sleep on our comfortable beds and wake to warm water to bathe in and food in our cupboards to eat…Food we buy from a local store that we drive to, by the way, in our heated or cooled vehicles. We get to select the foods we enjoy (if we don’t feel like preparing it, we simply call and order our dinner) or go to a restaurant where someone brings us our food, chosen from the many options on the menu. We take breaks from our relatively easy jobs, for which we are well compensated, to go on “vacation” from our easy lives. We entertain ourselves with movies, games, shows and shopping. We paint and redecorate our homes when we become bored with them. We have so much that we have garage sales to pare down our “stuff” that has gotten out of control. We run to the doctor when we don’t feel well and our health insurance pays the tab for testing and medicine. We have gym memberships to get the exercise we need because our lives are so “cushy” we get out of shape.

Living in all this ease, it is difficult for us to imagine that judgment will come and we will hear that sudden alarm:

At midnight a cry was heard: “Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet Him!” (Matthew 25:6) and “Remember Lot’s wife.” (Luke 17:32)

The Lord loves each one of us and wants us to be ready when He returns, suddenly and unexpectedly for His Bride, before He judges this world. Heed the warnings He provides through His Word. Do not prefer this world with all of its allure; the things that are coming to an end. Wake up and watch! Be ready and waiting for Him! Pray for each other and pray for the Lord to open the eyes of our unsaved loved ones. Flee from the wrath to come. Don’t look back. I sincerely believe the Lord is about to return for His church and it is His desire we all be ready! The finish line is in sight.

From Planned Suicide to Salvation

The Bob Davis Story

by Darlinda McDonald

The seeds of faith that Bill Rudge planted in the 1970s bore fruit when one Sunday morning Bob Davis laid down his gun and decided to go to church. That very day he found salvation.

It has been 10 years this month since Bob Davis’ plan to end his life was foiled. Bob tells it this way:

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Bill Rudge and Bob Davis sparring at Mt. Vernon YMCA in 1975.

In the summer of 2007, my wife Sally had started going to a local church in Mount Vernon, Ohio (Grace Community) but I chose not to go. I had started planning my own demise early in 2007 as I was just fed up with life. About two miles outside of town in the semi-flat farmland is a beautiful road known as Green Valley Road.

There is a one-mile stretch that is straight and then does a very hard 90-degree right turn. At the end of the straight stretch was a very large old tree and I figured that 85 miles per hour into that tree would solve all my problems. I decided to do a test run and much to my dismay discovered the tree had been cut down.

Later that summer, September 16 to be exact, after my wife Sally had gone to church, I headed out of town with one 9mm round that I had hand-loaded into my gun and written my name on with a Sharpie pen. As I reached the edge of town I suddenly began to wonder, “What am I trying to prove?” I turned around and headed to Grace Community Church. Three times I stopped but got there just as the service began. After the service I met with the pastor and found salvation.

Later that day the church was having a dinner in the park, which happened to be across the street from our house. I approached the pastor and gave him my “personalized 9mm round” which he still has and uses its story to help others.

Bob says there were three important “seed planters” in his life – his grandmother, his friend Jerry, and Bill Rudge. Bob’s grandmother planted seeds of faith throughout his life and often told her grandson that she knew he would be saved. However, she died in the 1980s and, unfortunately, did not live to see his conversion.

In the 1960s, Bob’s best friend Jerry asked him to join him in starting a band. Bob played the drums and Jerry sang in what evolved into the very successful band, Nomads. Jerry was another Christian who was a seed planter in Bob’s life.

It was in the mid-1970s that Bob met Bill Rudge. Bob was seeking a karate instructor at the time. When a friend told him about Bill, he said, “Who’s Bill Rudge?” Bob’s friend replied that Bill was a student at Mt. Vernon Bible College so Bob drove out to Bill and Karen’s mobile home right away. He took lessons from Bill who tried to “turn him onto Christ” but Bob says he didn’t care to hear about God at that time. Bill and Bob practiced martial arts together for several months as Bill continued to plant seeds of faith. These seeds took some time to grow but they did grow.

Bill graduated from Bible college and moved to North Carolina and then Pennsylvania. Bill would visit Bob every so often and give him the latest books he had written. Bob continued his martial arts training and became a Black Belt instructor before quitting years later.

Bob has experienced much pain in his life. Four of his six stepchildren have died, two before Bob became a Christian. His son, Kerry, was involved in drugs and committed suicide soon after he had an argument with Bob. In 1997, his son Greg died from lung cancer, 13 years after he was cured of thymus gland cancer. Bob became a Christian before his son Ted died of a heart attack in 2008. Then, on January 13, 2015, his daughter Gretchen died suddenly at work. An autopsy revealed a previously undetected defective heart valve. Over 1300 people attended her calling hours.

Earlier this year Bob had been praying that God would give him a sign that He was still with him. The next morning Bill unexpectedly showed up at Bob and Sally’s house in Mount Vernon. Bill had “suddenly” changed travel plans because he felt led to see Bob. In hindsight, Bob realizes that God has always had His hand on him and is grateful for the part that Bill Rudge has played in his life. Bob commented that Bill and Karen are two of the most faithful he has ever met and he thanks these “farmers” – sowers of seeds.

But Bill is even more amazed by the way Jesus has transformed Bob’s life. God’s grace has kept Bob and Sally steadfast through all their trials and tribulations. In spite of the many heartaches, Bob and Sally Davis faithfully serve Jesus Christ as they excitedly await His soon return.

Through the Tragedy of War Comes a Beautiful Love Story

Brittany and Joshua met, and eventually fell in love, while they were both on a military tour of duty in Iraq. Most young couples have challenges during their dating and engagement; imagine being in a war zone.

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BJ, Brittany and Joshua

Joshua’s Comments on the first time he saw Brittany: “She was sneaking into the back of the chapel on Sunday. I will never forget that image. She was both beautiful and peaceful.”

First Date: Joshua asked Brittany to go to the movies — he got down on his knees in front of her friends to ask her to go. Instead of going to a movie Joshua decided to walk around the post so they could talk. Thinking they were going to a movie, Brittany had her friends set up as spies to watch Joshua at the movie to make sure he was not a “player.”

Brittany’s Moment: On another occasion Joshua came to meet Brittany at work to take her to dinner. He took her to an abandoned cement building and surprised her with a candlelight dinner that consisted of a plastic table and chairs and Coke cans to hold the candles. Ten months later, Joshua proposed marriage.

Joshua’s Moment: On his birthday Brittany wanted to make Joshua a cake but she did not have the materials to make it. So she gave Joshua a Reese’s cup with a candle in it. Joshua loved it.

Brittany came to realize that they shared the same basic beliefs, values and goals, which are important in a marriage. She says, “Joshua is my best friend and I am really glad that I am best friends with the person I want to marry and spend the rest of my life with. He has brought me closer to God.”

Joshua’s Comments about Brittany: “When I met Brittany, it was a very confusing time in my life. Everything about my life that was normal and comfortable, everything that made sense, had been taken away suddenly. I found myself in a very strange environment. After I met Brittany I felt normal and comfortable and everything has made sense.”

The Engagement: On May 27, 2005 — Joshua proposed to Brittany on the first level of the Eiffel Tower. Joshua told Brittany that he wanted to show her something. Upon reaching the destination Joshua told Brittany that he loved her. She responded by saying that he only said that because he wanted a kiss on the Eiffel Tower. Joshua then got down on one knee and asked her to marry him, which after asking him if he was being serious, Brittany said, “YES!”

They had a beautiful June wedding in Fort Worth at which BJ and Bill Rudge had the privilege of officiating.

Challenge of the Obstacle Course

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Joshua and Brittany Lozier take the challenge of the Obstacle Course while visiting BRM this past summer. They did a great job on the One Leg Partner Squats which requires communication and cooperation. 

Joshua and Brittany Lozier were in Pennsylvania last summer visiting his parents before leaving for their new assignment in Germany where Brittany serves as a major in the U.S. Army. They spent part of a hot June afternoon at the Bill Rudge Ministries taking on the challenge of the Obstacle Course with Bill and BJ.

Also, congratulations to Major Brittany Lozier, for receiving her Doctor of Nursing Degree. Doctor (Major) Lozier was also recognized as one of six students who are in the National Registry of Who’s Who, for academic excellence and outstanding achievement. She and her husband, Joshua, also an Army veteran, are longtime supporters of BRM.

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BJ and Joshua

Comment about BRM by Joshua

Ten years ago my wife and I had the pleasure of having our wedding officiated in Fort Worth, Texas by Bill Rudge and the ceremony conducted by my friend, Dr. BJ Rudge, who also counseled us prior to our marriage. We are very happy to report that we are more in love and further in our walk with Christ than we have ever been. The counsel and prayers of this ministry have made a big difference in our lives. Thank you and we look forward to continuing our relationship with Bill Rudge Ministries until Christ returns or takes us home.

Brittany and Joshua – We salute you for serving your country.
Please keep them and all our military personnel in your prayers.

 

World War II Jewish Marine Accepts Jesus

As a new Christian Bill Rudge worked at a quick lube place changing oil. He made sure every car had a tract on its dashboard before it left Pit Stop.

One day a man who just had his oil changed noticed a tract about Jesus on his dashboard as he drove out. He was livid. He turned off his engine and came back in shouting, “Who put this tract in my car? I am a Jew. I do not want to hear about Jesus!” When he got back in his car, it would not start.

A few years later Karen Rudge was instrumental in this man’s daughter Sheree accepting Yeshua (Jesus) as her Messiah. Sheree became Bill Rudge Ministries’ first staff member. (We did not realize until later it was her father, Dexter, who had yelled at Bill years earlier.) Dexter listened in on a conversation between Karen and Sheree as they talked about Jesus. Karen remembers him interrupting the call and yelling, “You will see when the Messiah comes, He will not have nail prints in His hands!”

A few years later, Dexter’s oldest daughter Carolyn attended church with Sheree. During the service Carolyn had a vision of the Messiah. His hands were stretched out and she saw nail prints in them. She accepted Jesus as her Messiah. Both sisters consider themselves “completed” Jews, having accepted Yeshua as the promised Jewish Messiah.

Exactly 40 years later Bill had the opportunity to visit Dexter in the hospital. Bill prayed for him in Yeshua’s name and was invited to visit him in his home after he got out of the hospital. When Bill walked into his house, Dexter extended his hand and said, “You are my friend.” He told Bill he was a Marine during World War II and that he had killed people. He asked God for forgiveness.

Bill shared about the love and forgiveness of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Bill talked about the messianic prophecies in the Hebrew Bible fulfilled by Yeshua and the ones that will be fulfilled when Yeshua returns and sets up His millennial kingdom. Before leaving, Bill once again prayed in Yeshua’s name, and Dexter invited Bill to come back anytime. Bill had several more opportunities to share with him and his lovely Jewish wife, Florine. They both listened intently as the Hebrew Scriptures and New Testament clearly revealed Yeshua as the Jewish Messiah, and they were given hope concerning heaven and eternity.

On Dexter’s birthday, July 22, 2013, a good friend of the family prayed with Dexter and Florine to receive Yeshua as their Messiah and Savior. Two years later, Dexter went home to be with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. God is amazing and awesome! Forty years earlier Dexter cursed Bill for even mentioning that name and forty years later he allowed Bill to pray for him and proclaim salvation in Jesus’ name.

There is much more to tell about the amazing conversion of this Jewish couple, but that will have to wait for a future time…or perhaps until we meet them in eternity.

The MRI Inventor’s Greatest Discovery

by Darlinda McDonald

Dr. Damadian and his wife Donna became friends and faithful supporters of Bill Rudge Ministries after they met Bill and Karen while both their daughters were roommates in college. Bill was honored to perform Keira Damadian’s wedding in 2001. Dr. Damadian, renowned physician and scientist, is among the greatest inventors in history and one of the most intelligent scientists alive today.

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Dr. Raymond V. Damadian is known around the world as the man who invented the first Magnetic Resonance Scanning machine (MRI). Born into a French-Armenian family in New York in 1936 that encouraged higher education, Dr. Damadian graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in mathematics followed by an M.D. degree from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. In younger days, he studied violin at the famous Julliard School for eight years. While there, Damadian competed with nearly 100,000 applicants and won a Ford Foundation Scholarship when he was only 15.

Dr. Damadian’s desire for excellence has culminated in numerous awards including the National Medal of Technology, the Lemelson-MIT Lifetime Achievement Award and The Economist’s Innovation Award in Bioscience. He has been inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame and was named the Knights of Vartan Man of the Year in 2003. In addition, Dr. Damadian was nominated for the Nobel Prize for developing the MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scanning technology that has revolutionized modern diagnostic medicine and saved countless lives.

The book, A Machine Called Indomitable, tells the remarkable story of this visionary scientist who, against incalculable odds, fulfilled his dream and created an accessible, safe, nonradiological means of determining the chemical makeup of every cell in the body.

Dr. Damadian’s most important achievement, however, was the personal commitment he made to Jesus Christ at a Billy Graham Crusade at Madison Square Garden in 1957. According to an article written by Bob Chuvala in Christianity Today, 1997, Dr. Damadian nearly lost his faith while in pursuit of building the world’s first human scan. Work became his god and both he and his family suffered for it. “Once I was driven to my knees in prayer, things started to happen,” declared Dr. Damadian. “I don’t know what it’s like for people in other professions, but for the scientific mind, the Bible is wonderful if you read it from start to finish. It fits together with an astonishing consistency, which was the opposite of my secular perception. My early impressions were that it was rife with contradictions.”

Dr. Damadian is a firm believer in the biblical account of creation during a six-day stretch about 6,000 years ago. He says, “The non-biblical account would have us believe that all life originated from a single common ancestor – a slime mold – and give or take a billion years, we’re expected to believe that the descendants of this slime mold climbed out of the ocean and stood up and started giving lectures. Do the math on that. The sheer statistics of that violate any sense of reality.” Dr. Damadian believes the subject of evolution is not science but science fiction. For example, it violates the Second Law of Thermodynamics.

In his article, “Discovering the MRI Scanner,” Guideposts, January 1999, Dr. Damadian wrote that he now understands what the Apostle Paul called the renewed mind. He is convinced that Paul’s declaration, “In Christ are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:3), is the only way to account for the spontaneous onset of the incongruous idea to scan the entire human body by the test-tube technology named NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance). Out of a mind renewed by Jesus came the obvious. How could a scientist achieve his goal of discovering the absolute truths that govern the natural world without the blessing of the Author of those truths? For me now the true thrill of science is the search to understand a small corner of God’s grand design, and to lay the glory for such discoveries at the Grand Designer’s feet.

With all his successes, here is Dr. Damadian’s greatest scientific discovery as quoted in Creation magazine, 1994: “The highest purpose a man can find for his life is to serve the will of God.”IMG

You can learn more about the incredible life and faith of Dr. Damadian, in his new book, Gifted Mind, The Dr. Raymond Damadian Story, Inventor of the MRI. For more information, contact Master Books, P.O. Box 726, Green Forest, AR 72638 or visit http://www.masterbooks.com.