About Us

“It is written,man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God” . ~Matthew 4:4

This web site is the culmination of a dream that has been a goal for many years. With the help of a young friend, Clifford Almeida, it has now in the process of becoming a reality.

Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Ray Phillips. I am retired from the work force, living with my cat in Springfield, OR and attempting to do what I can to share the information the Holy Spirit has shown me in His word. Since the only way one can grow personally is to share, I receive probably more benefit from this endeavor then the reader. However, it is my desire that this web site will open up to you, broad vista’s of truth, you have not seen before. Many who have learned these basic principles of being a Christian have experienced this before you, when it was only on the printed page.

My Testimony

I was born into a Christian home. However, in my mid-teens a tragedy struck in the form of a death in the family. In my grief, I became mad at God for what happened. Besides, for some time, I had been questioning my own beliefs. I came to the conclusion that to be a Seventh-day Adventist, or for that matter, even a Christian, just because my family was, was probably the worst reason in the world. I still feel that way. So, I set out to discover just how the Bible describes the person God wants us to be like, if we take the name of a Christian. Just what are His standards for a member of the family of God?

The intervening time after that tragedy, I spent in a trip of discovery. I examined the teachings and practices of many of the major religions of the world as well as the major Christian denominations. Soon, it became apparent that I needed some basic parameters to base my search on, so I would know when I found something worth keeping. In problem solving, to identify the problem is 90% of the solution. So, I established three basic premises that have never changed since that day.

1. There is a God in heaven.

2. He made mankind and He loves what He created.

3. The book we call the Bible is God’s attempt to communicate with us, His family.

That is it. Others may add or subtract from that list, but that was my initial list. Since then I too have enlarged it a little. All other facets, parameters, doctrines, teachings, beliefs, etc. all were up for grabs, but these three things I chose to be my basic premise upon which to build my house of faith. They have served me well for some 50 plus years now. They may not be perfect, but I heartily recommend them to you as being workable.

Based on the above premises, I quickly came to the conclusion that, of all of the worlds major religions, I felt that the one that came closest to the standards I found in the Bible is Christianity. So from that point on, I focused solely on the Christian religion. As I searched further, my anger at God was reconciled. Only then did I feel that I was in fact, a Seventh-day Adventist Christian.

WHY? Because in this communion I have found a group of people who come closest to exemplifying the Biblical values. Do we all agree on everything? Not hardly! Are they/we all saints ready for translation to heaven? No, after all, I am a member and that makes that idea incorrect. Nor do I know of any organization that comes up to that standard. But while we do not always agree, we do agree on the basics listed above and that is what hold us together in bond of Christian love.

So, in any discussion of other religions or denominations that may come up in answering questions. The reader must read my comments against this background. I examined other denominations and organizations by what they claim is their goals, not what some one, two or even a majority of those who claim to be members of that group might be like. After all, the church is a hospital for sinners, not a country club for saints, as a saint is usually thought of. Therefore, what I found in the Seventh-day Adventist church was a group of people who were growing into the model God has established for being a Christian. So I have chosen to cast in my lot and grow with them too.

In time, contrary to my career goals, the Lord called me to the Gospel ministry. If the Lord had not made the evidence so very clear that this is what He wanted me to be doing, I would not have made that change, as my goal was to be in the business world. In preparation for that call to minister, I gained a degree in theology on the college level, then went on to complete the requirements for a Masters of Divinity from Andrews Seminary in Michigan.

It was while in my last year of college, in fact the last few weeks of the last semester, that an event occurred that changed my life forever. The Oregon Conference of Seventh-day Adventist had called me to be a minister. I was just finishing my scholastic work, looking forward to using what I had been learning in the church. However, even then it was with some qualms about my fitness to be a minister.

From my second year in high school, I had been bitten with the printers bug. I had gotten my fingers in printers ink, and as any older printer will tell you. Once that happens, you never get very far away from printing. Therefore, I had taken a job in printing to pay my way through college. I continued my same job I had been working at, as a sales representative for a press. The school had a press as part of the industrial arts program, so I went to work selling for them.

One day I returned to a job in printing that I had not done for many years, (I was in my mid thirties at the time). The stream fed folder operator came down with the flu and we had a rush, rush job on the folder that just had to get out. I knew how to run a stream fed folder, so I left my job in sales and got my hands dirty again. We were folding a 23X35 sheet, about the maximum size the folder would take. Because I had not done this for some time, my back was not up to that kind of lifting and I strained it quite badly. It was my fault, I thought I could just start up where I had left off, but it didn’t work. I was taken to the hospital and the doctor ordered bed rest for a week to start with. In a modified body brace and confined to bed, I was bored. That was before there were TVs in every room. Being use to pushing myself as far as I could, just laying there doing nothing was almost as bad as the pain in my back.

I had just purchased a couple of new books on living the Christian life, that I had not taken the time to read, so I asked my wife to bring them down, which she did.

Finishing the first one, I turned to the second one. About half way through the discussion of what is a Christian and how a Christian will live, I became acutely aware that even though I had been a baptized member of a Christian church for some 25 years, at that time, I had no idea at all about what a Christian was or how to live the Christian life. I was about to go out and tell others about something I did not know myself.

I had been in sales of all kinds for about the same number of years I had been a baptized member. During that time, I had set up for myself two firm rules of conduct.

1. I refused to sell anything that I would not use myself.

2. Nor would I use any tactics that I would not want others to use on me.

As I lay in bed contemplating the new revelations I had discovered and comparing my Christian walk with the standards the Bible calls for. I became acutely aware that what I was presenting to others, just plain did not work, or at least it had not worked in my life. This left me with a major ethical dilemma.

There was not a shadow of a doubt that God had lead me to that point. Nor was there a shadow of a doubt that the brand of Christianity I had been using, just plain did not work. Now, I felt that I had a major decision to make. Would I step into the pulpit and present something that did not work, or would I return to my previous career in sales?

For some time, I wrestled back and forth with the pros and cons and when I finally reached a decision, it was this. I was through with being a Christian. No longer would I make any effort to be good. Whatever I felt like doing, that was what I was going to do. I decided to tell God to no longer bother me, just leave me alone. He had had 25 years to make me into a Christian and if it hadn’t worked in 25 years, I saw no reason to believe it would work in the next 25 years. Therefore, I acted on my decision and told God just what I had decided. The greatest feeling of peace and happiness flooded over me, such as I had never known. It was so wonderful that I just reveled in it for awhile.

But that feeling went away and some nasty little thoughts started creeping back into my thinking. After all, the various ways God had led me, helped me, protected me, and I recalled many of the blessings He had given me. Not the least being a wonderful, beautiful wife with a wonderful disposition. May she rest in peace. It just did not seem right to turn my back on such a friend. Christian or not, that just did not seem to be the right thing to do to a friend who had helped me so much over the years.

So, now I was back at the starting point again. I loathed to change my mind, but I could see that the choice I had made was not the one I would want someone to make in regards to our friendship. What was I to do? I contemplated and argued all sides of the question. Measured up each possible conclusion against my standards that had served me so well for so many years. Finally in frustration and desperation, I told God. OK, I’ll not sever my connections with you. That just is not nice. However, I refuse to try to make myself good any longer. I still am only going to do whatever I feel like doing.

This time there was an entirely different response.

There has been only two times in my life where I felt that God spoke to me in an audible voice. This was the second of those two times. The first was when I was about to marry a girl that God saw was not the best for me. Since the event was about to be entered into, God interrupted those plans by a voice as clear as an human voice could be. Now, as I lay there in bed, it happened again. However, this time the voice was not near as pronounced, however, I had no doubt God was speaking to me. And what did He say: “I thought that you would never come to this place.”

As I have told many people, when I get to heaven, my guardian angel will wipe his brow and say something like: Whew, I m sure glad that is over. You have heard the saying, never drive any faster then your angel can fly. Well, I believe God gave me a supercharged angel for he needed all the speed he had at times. He has been with me when I knocked on deaths door so many times that I am known by my first name there. Only God knows why I am still here, but I am satisfied that He knows and that is enough for me.

Yes, there are many people who will testify that according to their standards and incomplete knowledge that I have not made any effort to be good. But, what I have found out is that there is no possible way to make myself good. Only God can do that. So for the some 30 years since that time, I have tried to just let God have His way and change whatever He wants to change in my life. Has it been easy? Yes and no. Giving up on one’s opinions is never easy. However, letting Him make me good is the only way to go. I strongly recommend it to anyone to try. I know it works. Like the old Packard advertising slogan went: Ask the man who owns one. I am a man who owns one. I know how this works and I heartily recommend it to anyone.

After that life changing experience, I entered the gospel ministry and served as a minister for the Seventh-day Adventist church for a few years. Part of the time was spent getting my Masters of Divinity degree at Andrews University. Then a few years later, it seemed to leave the organized ministry and turn my efforts towards an independent ministry style of work. Which is what I am doing today. I still feel that I am a minister and that God is still leading me. It is just not in any denominational position, although I have been asked from time to time to return in one capacity or another.

God’s ministers are not all ordained and carrying credentials from any one church. At all times in the history of the world, God has always had a few in other situations that are not readily seen to be part of His organized work. The Bible does not list being a member of any given church body as a test for truth. Just like God told Peter, after he saw a vision, while waiting for a meal. Call no man common or unclean.

However, God does have His people on this earth and while we may not all be in the same camp now, the time is coming when all true Christians are going to come out and join together with other true Christians and then Jesus will come and take His bride home.

This web site is just another of my efforts to, in my little way, share what God has shown me to be His will for those who choose to follow Him.

The Basic Christianity Series that you will find in the Gospel Section, is a sharing of the trip I took during my own search. In that series of lessons, you will first learn about the Bible itself as a book and as the word of God. What it is, how we got it and a little of what it has been through. Then I share the tests that I have found in the Bible. Tests that one who wants to be a workman who needs not be ashamed and who does not want to be deceived by the false prophets, who are even now multiplying in the earth, will use to discover just who is sharing truth and who’s teachings that are not according to God’s word. I invite each one to internalize these tests and apply those same tests to all that is found in this web site as well as any other you may visit. Especially apply them to what you believe yourself. Some surprises may await you. If so, rejoice for truth is a journey, not a destination. If you find some surprises, that means that the Holy Spirit is leading you into all truth, and thank Him for it. Just be sure what you are examining will pass all of the tests. For a failing grade is just failing one point.

Following that are several discussions of topics that most people assume that everyone knows. Such as what is love, what is sin, what is a good person. Since few take the time to explore these topics, I have attempted to put together what I have found in the Bible on these topics. There are no church doctrines presented here. Just a search of the Bible to see what it might reveal on any given subject.

Then following that, other various booklets and position papers I have compiled when various issue came up will be added. When a question might come up, I would go to the Bible to see just what it said, then put it down in a somewhat orderly manner for future reference as well as to be able to look over the material and draw logical conclusions from that information. These will be on various topics, not the least being a study on Daniel and another on Revelation that has been valuable for me. Some I have privately published in small runs to share with others. None have been commercially published. Also, I am not an editor nor a trained writer, although I wish I had that ability. But, I do the best I can and trust the Holy Spirit to make it understandable.

Over the years, I have found other resources that are on the same wavelength. Some of these have websites that I will include so you can have that additional information too.

As the old retired preacher, Paul, said to his young protg, Timothy, the pastor of the church at Ephesus. Among other things, which you can read in both 1st and 2nd Timothy, the following admonition is given, which is also my prayer for you.

But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. [12] Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 1 Tim. 6:11-121 Tim. 6:11-12
English: World English Bible - WEB

11 But you, man of God, flee these things, and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, and gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight of faith. Lay hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and you confessed the good confession in the sight of many witnesses.

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(ESV)

Fight the good fight of faith. Some read this as: “Battle for the doctrines of my church. But that is not what it says.” Some may read this as: “Fight to propagate my private interpretation and woe be to the one who stands in my way.” But that is not what it says either.

What it says is: “Fight the good fight of faith.” This is faith in God. What we need to fight is the battle to keep our trust, faith, in God and be able to stand back and allow Jesus to do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. For this is the gospel that we are to take into all the world.

This gospel is a simple story, but it has a depth that the most careful scholar will never exhaust. The gospel is not that Jesus died for us. How can that be good news that my sins caused the death of my best friend? Nor is the gospel that Jesus is coming again. How can that be good news if I, or my loved ones, are not ready to go home with Him? Nor is the gospel a list of doctrines that will indoctrinate people into my church. As long as it is my church, it is not God’s church. The gospel commission is to bring people to God so they can become part of His family.

The gospel in its simplest form is just this.

God will do for you what you can not do for yourself, if you will ask Him to and mean it.

Jesus said it this way in John 5:30John 5:30
English: World English Bible - WEB

30 I can of myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge, and my judgment is righteous; because I don’t seek my own will, but the will of my Father who sent me.

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“I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.” John 5:30John 5:30
English: World English Bible - WEB

30 I can of myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge, and my judgment is righteous; because I don’t seek my own will, but the will of my Father who sent me.

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NASB

Jesus did nothing on His own initiative and He is our example. So when we choose to live that way, then God will do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. This is just how simple the Christian life really is.

Try it, you will like it. I have for going on 55 years now. It is the only way to go! God has been good to me. He will be good to you too, if you will let Him.

Maranatha J
Ray Phillips

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