A Boxer Finds Meaning in God
An Excerpt from my Interview with Dr. Phil Fernandes
As the 1970s came to a close, Phil Fernandes was a Marine, a boxer, and a skeptic.
Today, he is a Christian scholar, apologist, and pastor.
What changed? In his own words...
"I wasn’t looking for truth; I was just looking for meaning. But I started reading Hall Lindsey books on the end times, and I thought, 'Wow, maybe there is something to this. I wonder who the Antichrist is going to be...'
Then I got into a lot of drinking. But that didn’t work. Then I thought, 'Maybe I’ll find meaning by boxing Marines.' And I kept fighting bigger and bigger Marines, but they didn’t know how to box so it wasn’t a lot of fun. Eventually, I quit drinking. I started going to Catholic mass. Then a lady invited myself and the other Marines I was working with – we were all from New Jersey, New York, Boston…mostly Italian guys – she invited us over for a home-cooked meal.
There were pictures of Jesus all over the wall.
She knew she wasn’t going have an open door with us. She kept saying that her friend was going to come over and talk to us. He was an ex-convict. He looked like a big, rough guy. I thought I could respect him, and he was a Roman Catholic.
He invited me to a prayer meeting, and I went to that prayer meeting Tuesday night and was given the gospel message in a real clear manner: that I’m a sinner and I deserve the flames of hell. There was no way to be saved other than by trusting in the Lord Jesus and being saved by God’s grace.
So in 1981, around May or June, I trusted in Jesus for salvation. That’s how I got saved."
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