A. Ray (Doc) Stanford…..Christian Gentleman, Man of God.

Ray (Doc) Stanford

1917-2012

Dr. Austin Ray Stanford left the bonds of this earth, yesterday,  and is now Home with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

John 14:2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

Dr. Stanford was a True Soldier for the Lord claimed the Heavenly Mansion built especially for him.  He leaves behind a legacy that most of us could only dream of.  

He was a B-24 bomber pilot in World War II.  After the war, Ray became an ordained minister and received his doctorate.  This would prove to be the “Calling” for his life.  He was the founder and president of the Christian Youth Ranch, Grace Community Church and Florida Bible College.  He traveled the globe preaching the Gospel of Jesus.  Doc Stanford believe in telling folks the “Good News” of God’s Grace and Salvation in it’s simplest form.

Ephesians 2:8-9

 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:  Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Ray had an illustration for Salvation that is so simple yet so powerful.  This link is a youtube video.  The audio is not perfect but you will get the simple message.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rs4UkcQdBY8.  This illustration has been used by many preachers and you can bet that I will use it someday.

I never met Dr. Stanford face to face.  Through the caring of a cherished friend, I was able to speak with Ray via the telephone just a couple of months ago.  It was easy to hear from his voice why he was loved by so many people.  You know how you can tell if someone is truly interested in what you are saying or just being polite?  Mr. Stanford was interested.  In fact, the greatest moment of the entire conversation was his invitation to come to Florida for a visit and his offer to be available by phone if I ever needed to ask a question.  We exchanged emails on a few occasions and he never failed to respond.

We’ve all heard the old saying, “God Works in Mysterious Ways.”  Reflecting back, I must say the way God  lead me to this incredible man is nothing more than a miracle that has turned in to a blessing for me.  When I became a Christian I stopped believing in fate.  God placed a family in my life fully knowing the blessings I would receive and eventually lead me to the teachings of Dr. A. Ray Stanford.

Doc in Summer of 2010

I first heard of Doc Stanford through a dear friend and my closest mentor, Mike McFarlin.  Mike has known Ray for longer than either one of them would like to admit.  During my phone conversation with Doc, we gave poor Mike fits.  It was all in a good way…..I think!  Sorry Mike, I tried to defend you!  Of course I am only joking.  Ray and Mike had a special relationship and I am truly blessed to have gotten a glimpse of that relationship.  Through front porch talks with Mike and reading, watching and listening to Dr. Stanford changed my entire prospective of God’s Word.  Thank you both.

Dr. Stanford has a “must read” book for every Christian.  No, I’m not trying to sell a book for him.  You can download the book  (FREE) in it’s entirety here.  Handbook of Personal Evangelism.  Read it….it will change your life.

You also should go to Ray’s website @ www.eph289.c0m.  There is tons of information and a wonderful “In Memoriam” honoring Dr. Stanford.

Doc Stanford had a debate with renowned atheist Madalyn Murray O’Hair in the early 70′s.  If you would like to listen here is the link.  The audio will be found on the left side of the page about mid-page.  Stanford-O’Hair Debate.

I was reading about Ray this morning and came across a post on Facebook.  And yes, at 95, Ray had a Facebook page.  The person who wrote this has known Doc all her life.  She said, “I wonder how many thousands of person are in Heaven or on their way to Heaven, right now, because of the Gospel teachings of Ray.”

I’ll close with a quote from the introduction in Ray’s book.  As I mentioned earlier, he believed in delivering the Gospel in it’s simplest form.

“We must give the message in words the people can understand. A doctor cannot communicate with most of his patients by using medical terminology. What the physician says may be true, but most patients will not be able to grasp the meaning.  Communication is with words, and they have to be on the level of the person’s understanding. Christ said, “Feed My sheep.” He did not say, “Feed My giraffes.””

Thank you Ray…You have touched so many lives.  Now you can enjoy Heaven….A place, about which, you have told so many.

Revelation 22:20-21 He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus . The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

May GOD Bless…                                               Ray’s Obituary

Byron

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5 thoughts on “A. Ray (Doc) Stanford…..Christian Gentleman, Man of God.

  1. Tom and Marion Dudley

    Ray Stanford led my husband and myself to the Lord at his church called “Grove Community Church” in the year 1961. Praise the Lord!

    • Thank you for your response. I’ve heard so many stories about Ray from his friends. I did get to talk to him on the phone a month or two ago. It was a privilege to finally speak to him. What a great man!!

  2. Kenneth M. Wilbourne Jr

    The greatness of any man can only be attributed to God. I praise God , Jesus, and The Holy Spirit for saving this man, Dr. Austin Ray Standford’s soul, and for giving him the conviction and courage to teach and preach”The Good News”. John 3:16; Ephesians 2:8-10.

  3. Byron,

    Ray led me (an atheist at the time) to Christ in a Christmas Concert, December 15, 1964 at the old Grove Community Church in Miami, FL.

    Eight years later I graduated from Florida Bible College and, with a group of friends, started Palmetto Bible Church. In the interim, I was honored to serve under Ray as a Deacon and an Elder at Grove Community Church and Florida Bible Church as well as on the Board of Florida Bible College.

    I am indebted to Ray Stanford because he led me to Christ with the simplicity that is in Christ Jesus and taught salvation by Grace alone through Faith alone in Jesus Christ alone. I have continued that same teaching as a Pastor and now, after retirement with my web site where hundreds visit daily.

    At age 84, I am looking forward soon to being with my Savior Jesus and meeting Ray and all the thousands of folks in the fellowship of believers whom he led to Christ.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack Weaver (aka ExPreacherMan)
    Come visit us at: http://www.ExPreacherMan.com

  4. Sherri Tefft

    Dr. Stanford was the best evangelist. I love and use his Handbook of Personal Evangelism too. My dad was led to The Lord Jesus Christ by Dr. Stanford. Dr. Stanford led many students from Miami High School to The Lord too.

    My father was Scotty Tefft. My dad received a Bachelor’s in Bible from Florida Bible College and a Bachelor’s in Building Construction from The University of Florida. I am sure that the reason my dad was always on fire to present the gospel was due to God The Holy Spirit, and the wonderful training from Dr. Stanford. My dad beat Dr. Stanford to heaven and I am sure my dad was in the “greeting line” for Dr. Stanford along with King David, the Apostle Paul, Elvis, etc.. I definitely look forward to seeing Dr. Stanford in eternity too!

    Dr. Stanford was so good at lighting a fire under believers to memorize scriptures and present the message of our Lord with dignity, accuracy, and full knowledge. He will be missed in time. I am confident that Dr. Stanford will be well recognized and well rewarded in eternity. Dr. Stanford can look forward to that soul winner’s crown in I Thess 2:19-20 and many, many rewards too! He will definitely be getting the Well Done in Matt 17:5.

    I have great respect and much appreciation for Dr. Stanford. Thanks to The Lord in His Grace for providing us with a great teacher and evangelist in Dr. Stanford. Sherri Tefft in Houston, Tx.

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