All posts tagged: Rick Renner

Turning One’s Ears From the Truth to Fables

And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. — 2 Timothy 4:4 By Rick Renner In our home in Russia, Denise and I have several black, lacquered boxes that are precious Russian works of art. They were painted using a centuries-old technique, and each box contains up to 16 layers of papier-mâché. The work is so intricate, in fact, the scenes on these boxes were painstakingly painted with a brush containing only one hair! Then when the painting was finished on one of these boxes, the artist would burnish it with the tooth of a wolf. Four main schools taught and performed this method, and when the art form first began in Russia, the intricate scenery on these boxes primarily consisted of religious icons and scenery depicting religious events and nobility. But the art changed after the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution. Under Communism, the artists who masterfully created these works of art were no longer allowed to paint religious themes because atheism had become the “religion” of the …

Proof that God can Reach Anyone!

By Rick Renner

Sometimes I hear people say, “I just don’t know if So-and-so can come to Christ. They are so hardhearted and far from God!” If you’ve ever said this about a person in your life, today I want to give you hope. We’re going to look at what kind of person Paul was before he came to Christ — and I believe you’ll see and understand that if God could save Saul of Tarsus (who became known as the apostle Paul), then He can save anyone!

The Effect of Strife

For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work. — James 3:16 By Rick Renner During our early years in the former USSR, Denise and I were invited to minister at three European conferences in Austria, Switzerland, and Germany, and I decided to bring our sons to give them the experience of ministering in Europe. When the day finally arrived for our long-anticipated trip, things got a little hectic, to say the least. The clock was ticking, and it was time for us to depart to the airport so we wouldn’t miss our flight. However, instead of getting ready, the boys were just poking around, and Denise hadn’t even finished packing. I knew that if we didn’t leave on time, we’d miss our flight. So in the midst of it all, I lost my temper and began to yell and threaten everyone to get downstairs immediately and pile in the car, or I was going to leave without them! Our ministry administrator at that time had agreed to housesit for us …

The power of miracles

Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. And the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed. And there was great joy in that city. — Acts 8:5-8 By Rick Renner On April 12, I told a bit of this story, but it so impacted my life that I want to share it in greater detail today and give you the reason why miracles often occur on a massive scale, or among large crowds of people. It was the conclusion of five amazing days of meetings — the first large public meeting that Denise and I had ever conducted in the former USSR. Of the 32,000 people who attended the event, 7,000 people came forward to receive Christ and 926 people received water baptism — and we witnessed scores …

Prove all things

By Rick Renner

I once bought a violin that I was sure was an authentic Stradivarius violin. Of course, if it was real, it was worth several million dollars. Before I purchased it, I studied documents about how to recognize a real Stradivarius compared to a well-made copy. After convincing myself that I had found a real Stradivarius in a remote antique shop in Russia, I purchased it. But after an examination by a violin expert, it proved to be nothing more than a very old, fabulous fake.


Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him. — Luke 17:3 By Rick Renner When I was a young boy, I had a baseball coach who really disliked me. No matter how hard I tried to please him, he poked fun at me and tried to embarrass me in front of my teammates. His words and behavior would hurt me deeply, but I can remember my father telling me to forgive him. My dad would gently urge me to “grin and bear it” because these things happen in life. So when my coach insulted me, I’d do my best to forgive him and then muster the strength to wipe away my tears and walk back onto the ball field. It was wrong of that baseball coach to treat me in that way, but his negativity provided a good learning experience to help prepare me for life. I’m so thankful my father taught me to forgive, get back on the field, and not let the words …

What is a Plague?

And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague. — Mark 5:29 By Rick Renner Do you know anyone that has ever been subjected to a plague? Have you ever had a plague afflict you? Technically, what is a plague? We tend to use this word “plague” to describe worldwide pandemic outbreaks, but that is not the way it is used in Mark 5:29, which tells of a woman who had an issue of blood for 12 years. Specifically, Mark 5:29 says that when this woman touched Jesus, she was healed of her “plague.” Yet this woman’s sickness was not contagious, nor was it imminently life-threatening, since she had been sick with it for 12 years. So today I want to tell you about how I discovered the meaning of the word “plague” in the New Testament and why this was such an important discovery to me. As a university student, I suffered tremendously from allergic reactions. In fact, a simple …

Being kind to one another

And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you. — Ephesians 4:32 By Rick Renner Today I’d like to begin by telling you about an amazing event that occurred when Denise and I were in Greece some years ago — an experience that taught me a lot about the impact kindness has on others. While visiting the ancient city of Corinth, Denise and I decided to take the long walk up the rocky road that led to the acropolis where the Temple of Aphrodite once stood. Having taught on the book of Corinthians for many years and knowing the historical influence that this location once had on the people of Corinth, I wanted to ascend that arduous peak to see that ancient site with my own eyes. But as we walked higher and higher, we understood that this would take far more time than we had planned, so we turned around and headed back down the mountain, descending the same slippery slope we had …

Under His Feet!

And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church.— Ephesians 1:22 By Rick Renner In the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, Egypt, there is an exquisite display of the treasures of King Tut (Tutankhamun) — the boy pharaoh who died at a very early age and whose tomb was discovered by Howard Carter in the year 1922. I’ve been to Tut’s Tomb in the Valley of the Kings, and on multiple occasions I’ve seen the display of treasures found in his tomb that are on view in the Egyptian Museum. This museum is one of the world’s greatest — filled with artifacts from the ancient world. However, of all the relics on display, there is something uniquely breathtaking about the treasures of King Tut. Each time I’ve been there, I’ve found myself especially fascinated by one group of items in the collection — the walking canes that were used by King Tut. As one might expect, these canes are long and slender and are …


By Rick Renner

Many years ago, Denise and I took our sons to Rome for a study tour of the ancient world with a special emphasis on early Christian history. As we stood inside the great Roman Coliseum, we listened as our doctoral guide spoke to us at length about the barbarism and atrocities that were so loved and cheered by the Roman citizens who packed that great stadium nearly 2,000 years ago.

Hold Fast to That Which Is Good

By Rick Renner

Years ago I was invited to have lunch with a man who said he wanted to talk. As I sat with him, he began to tell me the many reasons why he had abandoned believing in the gifts of the Holy Spirit. At first, I thought maybe he just needed someone to talk to about his doubts, but soon I realized this man was deeply bitter. I finally understood he had asked me to lunch in an attempt to dissuade me, and whoever else would listen, from believing in the gifts of the Holy Spirit.


By Rick Renner

In the early years of our ministry in the former Soviet Union, a group of local psychiatrists determined among themselves that I was using a high level of hypnosis to control the people who attended our church. They stated that my level of hypnosis was so developed that I could even manipulate and control people who read my monthly teaching letters that we sent to television viewers.

Praying With Boldness and Confidence

By Rick Renner

I’m so grateful for all the truths and godly qualities that my pastor and church family planted in me during my growing-up years. But I have to say, in all the years I attended that church, I personally can’t remember a time when I heard anyone pray boldly or confidently. I simply had no idea what bold, confident praying sounded like until I attended a seminar at another church where a special speaker was teaching on the subject of faith.

A Supernatural Answer to Prayer

In the early 1990s, I was on a plane that was horribly overloaded with people, luggage, and boxes. So many air-safety rules were being violated on this particular flight! Pieces of luggage and boxes were strapped into the seats where people should have been sitting — and people were sitting on top of the boxes in the main aisle of the cabin.

Quit Comparing Yourself to Others

By Rick Renner …But they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.— 2 Corinthians 10:12 Earlier in life, I struggled terribly with an inferiority complex. Inadequacy, insufficiency, incompetence, and deficiency are just a few words to express the feelings that tried to master my self-image. Today I want to share what I learned from that experience, as well as a great truth I found in my studies of Second Corinthians 10:12, which says, “…They measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.” I believe that the principle I discovered in this verse will help you if you’ve faced a similar struggle and you long to be free. When our teaching ministry was first getting started, I wondered, Who will ever want to have us minister in their church or conference? Denise and I had been living in a small city and had very few contacts beyond our little circle, so it seemed like a logical question. On one hand, I knew that God had called us …

Use what influence you have!

By Rick Renner But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear. — 1 Peter 3:15 Several years ago my heart was stirred to pray for a method to reach the elderly population in the city of Moscow. The majority of them grew up under Communism and therefore lived a life devoid of God. Although the rule of Communism is gone, that ideological system still pervades much of the thinking of the older generation. This makes them one of the most difficult groups to reach with the Gospel. My heart has been burdened for this older segment of Russian society for several reasons, but the most important reason is that multitudes of these senior citizens will soon leave this world and pass into eternity without Christ unless we first reach them with the Good News of Jesus Christ. As I prayed for these seniors, I wanted to know how …

No Open Doors

By Rick Renner Neither give place to the devil. — Ephesians 4:27 Have you ever felt like you were under spiritual attack or that the devil was trying to wage a vicious warfare against your very existence? Today I want to talk to you about doing all you can to keep every door shut to the enemy so he is unable to find easy access into your life. I can personally testify to many attacks that have come against our ministry and family as we have pressed forward to take new territory for the Kingdom of God over the years. I have learned that the enemy is always looking for ways to sabotage anything that is of significance to the overall plan of God. Therefore, we have had to stand our ground and fight many times. Part of a long-term protection plan against the enemy’s attacks has been making sure that we left no open doors for the enemy to find easy access to us or our ministry. Believe me when I tell you that …

The power of believing

By Rick Renner When our TV program was broadcast on Channel One in Belarus, every home in the entire nation had the ability to watch it. The proof of how many people watched our program was the mountains of mail we received every week from Belarus. The impact we had was simply phenomenal. So at the urging of a pastor in Minsk, the capital of Belarus, we took the train to that city and held a three-day meeting for our television viewers. People came from all over Belarus, to the point that the auditorium could not hold everyone who tried to get into the meeting. It blessed us to see such a response to the Gospel message delivered through our TV program. However, the first night of the meeting was a real struggle because they gave me an interpreter who knew almost no English. All night he and I wrestled back and forth on the stage, trying to understand each other, and I knew that the crowd was missing what God wanted to say to …

The Solution to Offense

By Rick Renner I was once offended by a missionary who lied to me and led me into a web of deceit that hurt me deeply. What really hurt was that I had trusted this man and had such a high regard for him. But when I discovered what he had done — and that he had done it deliberately — it was like a knife had been plunged into the depth of my soul. Every time I saw that brother and how casually and unrepentant he behaved about what he had done, the devil twisted that knife in my back another turn and caused that deeply intense pain to be inflicted all over again. I really didn’t know what to do to resolve the situation. I felt the missionary should be held accountable for what he had done to Denise and me and to our ministry — but there was no way to hold him accountable that we could find. So he just drifted away freely, facing no consequences for the deep wound he …


The difficulty of travel when we first moved to the Soviet Union cannot be exaggerated. For example, because the whole USSR was gripped with deficits multiple decades ago, people never knew if they’d be able to find gasoline for their car. In the town where Denise and I lived, there was rarely gasoline at the gas station.


By Rick Renner How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil….— Acts 10:38 During our early years in the former USSR, I preached a series of meetings in Riga, Latvia. Several thousand people showed up for these special services — many of whom were first exposed to our ministry through our TV program — and our team witnessed thousands of people come forward to surrender their lives to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. It was absolutely thrilling to see people’s response to the Gospel message. After all the meetings were concluded, the local church leader who organized the event came to me and asked me to pray for his disabled teenage son. His boy had suffered severe, permanent injuries after being physically beaten by a gang of hoodlums. In fact, they smashed his head into the concrete street so many times with such force that his brain had become dislodged from his skull. He was literally …

 Do Not Budge From Your Post 

By Rick Renner Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season… — 2 Timothy 4:2 In the book of Second Timothy, the apostle Paul gave a long, detailed description of the things that would become more and more prevalent in the last of the last days. Later in that same letter, Paul gave this charge to the younger minister: “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season…” (2 Timothy 4:2). The word “instant” is from the Greek word ephistemi, and it means to stand at your post. The word ephistemi is a military term. That’s important because standing at your post entails engaging in spiritual warfare. I won’t delve into a deep study of the subject of spiritual warfare here, but I will say that declaring the Word of God in faith is the highest level of spiritual warfare there is. That’s why it’s especially important for a preacher, or any believer who has God’s Word planted deeply in his heart, to stand and to keep on standing at his post …

Be wise as a serpent

By Rick Renner …be ye therefore wise as serpents. — Matthew 10:16 Over the years in our ministry, I have discovered timing to be extremely important. I have certainly found it to be true that we need to act when favor is obviously on our side. But let me also say that wonderful opportunities can also come packaged with difficult challenges. Knowing exactly which opportunities to take — and which ones to let pass us by — has been one of my personal challenges in the former Soviet Union. One day I was seeking the Lord about several opportunities that were presenting themselves. The Lord said to me, “If you’re going to survive and do what I’ve called you to do in this part of the world, you have to learn to think like a snake.” At first, these words caught me off guard. But immediately Matthew 10:16 came to my mind: “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.” In …