Dave Ray Roberts: “I Gave My Heart and Soul to Christ” (Gospel Light Minute #275)

He is an American professional baseball manager and former outfielder who is currently the manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers of Major League Baseball (MLB). He played for five MLB teams over a ten-year career and then coached for the San Diego Padres before being named Dodgers manager in 2016. Although he played for the Boston Red Sox for only part of one season, his most notable achievement as a player was a key stolen base in the 2004 American League Championship Series (ALCS) that ignited the Red Sox’s drive to their historic championship that year.

The son of a Japanese mother and African American father, he became the first manager of Asian heritage to lead a team to the World Series in 2017, when the Dodgers captured the National League pennant. He also led the Dodgers to the World Series in 2018 and back again in 2020, winning in the latter year. He is both the first manager of Asian heritage and second African American manager to lead a team to a World Series title. His .614 regular-season winning percentage (436-274) ranks third all time behind Hall of Famer Joe McCarthy and current Yankees manager Aaron Boone, who are tied for first at .615. His 436 wins rank seventh in franchise history, but with a full season next year, he would likely move into fifth. Since the start of the 2016 season, when he took over the Dodgers, no other manager has collected more regular-season victories.

Prior to the 2019 season, the Dodgers manager, now rightly considered among the best managers in the game, discussed his Christian faith with the “Think Biblically” podcast hosted by Scott Rae, a professor with the Talbot School of Theology at Biola University, near Los Angeles.

“My faith has impacted the clubhouse because I live my life a certain way”. “There’s no question that I’m a believer. I can quite honestly say I live that the way I should, and I’m bold about that. But I am respectful of the profession and the job that guys have to do. So there’s a couple layers: number one, people knowing who I am inside and out, and I am consistent with that, and being open to listening and leading and trying to do things the right way. I think that people see Christ through me, and that’s what we want to create in the clubhouse.”

During the interview, when asked how his faith has made a difference in his role as a manager, he said: “Well, as a baseball fan, which I am, as a former player, as a coach where every game means something and it impacts people, my faith plays into this because I work as hard as I can work,” he said. “I prepare as well as I can prepare. But, at the end of the day, I feel that if I live my life and prepare [the way Christ wants me to prepare] and compete the way that Christ wants me to compete, I’ll live with any result.

“I don’t take it lightly in the sense that I don’t care as much as the next person, because I do. But I do feel that I’m here for a greater purpose, and I do have a platform to share my faith and to make the men around me better people and see Christ in me. If their time comes that they get to know the Lord, great. I do have a job to do, and that’s that I work for the Dodgers. But I think that it gives me a really good peace where I have anxiety or stress, frustration, and I put it on God. I really do.”

He said he gave his life to Christ in 1996. Up until that point, baseball was his god and he thought just being a good person was sufficient. But he noticed something different about certain people around him, and came to realize they were all believers.

“Ultimately, I gave my heart and soul to Christ,” he said. “Then I went through the period of, ‘Man, I’m on fire and everything’s going to be perfect. All those demons that I had and trials were going to be gone.’ And I quickly learned that wasn’t the case … It’s been rocky. It hasn’t been perfect, the way I’ve lived as far as temptations, priorities get away, and I don’t keep God at my center. I didn’t keep God at my center. It’s a growth period. I will say that it’s taken me a long time to really accept the fact that there’s no perfect Christian and everyone has their own individual walk. As long as we’re getting closer to God every single day, that’s what we strive for.”

His name is Dave Ray Roberts.

This is the “Chief of Sinners,” Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International, reminding you of what the Bible says, that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” like you and me. Just as Dave Roberts trusts in Jesus Christ for salvation, may I encourage you to do the same. Here is how:

1. Accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 7:20: “For there is not a just man upon earth that doeth good, and sinneth not.” Romans 3:23 reads: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” In fact, I am the chief of sinners, so don’t think that you’re alone.

2. Accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

3. Accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” The Bible says in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

4. Accept the fact that you cannot do anything to save yourself! The Bible states in Ephesians 2: 8, 9: “For by grace are ye saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is a gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.”

5. Accept the fact that God loves you more than you love yourself, and that He wants to save you from hell. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

6. With these facts in mind, please repent of your sins, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and pray and ask Him to come into your heart and save you this very moment. The Bible states in the book of Romans 10:9, 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”

“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Dear friend, if you are willing to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, please pray with me this simple prayer: Heavenly Father, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

Remember, friend, Believe by faith. Share the faith. and Keep the faith!

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