Rickey Waggoner’s life was saved by the Bible. Literally!
Waggoner, a Dayton, Ohio, bus driver, was attacked early Monday morning by three teenagers after his bus broke down. The 49 year-old public transit driver was shot in the leg, stabbed in the arm, and shot twice at point-blank range in chest.
However, he survived because the bullets that hit him in the chest were stopped by a small New Testament in his front pocket, according to CNN affiliate WHIO.
“I’ve been hit in the leg,” Wagoner told an emergency dispatcher, The Dayton Daily News reported, “My chest feels like I’ve been hit with a sledgehammer.”
“Amazingly, his injuries are not life threatening,” Sgt Michael Pauley told the newspaper. “There was obviously some kind of intervention involved in this incident, because he probably should not be here.”
I don’t know, and no one really knows, the role God’s providence played in saving Rickey Waggoner’s life. But this I do know. The Bible reveals God’s direct and purposefully intervention in all of our lives.
God sent Jesus on a mission to earth to show us the Father. To reveal grace and truth. To show us the way to heaven. And to ultimately be sacrificed for the sins of the human race. (John 1:1-14; 3:16; 14:1-6).
Before he died on the cross, Jesus promised the apostles that He would send the Holy Spirit to direct them. Teach them. Guide them. Remind them of His Word. And to reveal all Truth to them. (John 14-16). Paul affirmed that by revelation, he received the Gospel. Wrote it down. And we can read and understand it. (Eph 3:1-6).
And so, Jesus is God’s spokesman today, speaking to us through His revealed, written Word, the Bible. Think of all that the Bible offers us.
The Bible reveals the knowledge of God. His goal of creation. His plan for our lives. And His predestinated purpose in Christ Jesus (Eph. 1:1-17). Then the Bible provides for us an example of how to better our lives and be more like Christ.
The Bible helps us grow in faith (Rom. 10:17). Direct our relationships. Strengthen our homes. Amend our short-comings. And fulfill us emotionally, mentally, socially, and spiritually. (Rom. 12; Phil 4:19; Eph. 4:17-6:10; Gal. 6:1-10)
The Bible, God’s Word, will guard our hearts. Guide our steps. And deliver us from evil. In short, it will keep us from the snare of sin and its destructive forces. (Ps 119:11; 37:31; Prov. 2:1-12)
The Bible revives the soul. Comforts the heart. Alters attitudes. Improves our focus on life. Strengthens us spiritually. Gives us wisdom. Empowers us to make better choices. Perfects God’s love in us. Purifies the soul. And gives us hope (Ps 119).
The Bible puts The Temper to flight. Jesus rebuffed the temptations of the Devil with three words: “It is written.” (Matt 4:1-12). Through the Word we can find strength to overcome weakness, deny our carnal lusts and be victorious over sin and Satan.
The Bible, through reading, meditation and prayer, brings us closer to God. And into a more intimate relationship with Jesus. We experience divine association. Enjoy spiritual blessings. And obtain inner peace.
The Bible’s directives can relieve the stress of life. Restrict the impact of our problems. Restore the soul. And supply relaxation of mind, heart and spirit. (Ps 23).
But ultimately, and most importantly, the Bible’s teaches us how to receive eternal salvation. (Mk 16:15-16; Acts 2:37-41; Rom. 6:1-17). To know there is life beyond the grave. And to live with faith in God and hope of a future filled with wonderful blessings.
The Bible can obviously stop a bullet from hitting your heart. It did for Ricky Waggoner. But the Bible can penetrate your heart. Empower your life. And save your soul.
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman