Young Man’s Journey from Death to Life

I knew a young man some 50 years ago. He was lost. He was drafted into the Army and became a medical lab tech. He arrived at a MASH hospital in Viet Nam in Sept. 1967. He could perform 20 different lab tests, but he only cross-matched blood for the patients, 12 hour shifts, 7 days a week. That is how bloody it was; it never stopped. He started using marijuana to ease the stress and became an everyday, all day, user.

But God used the horrifying fruit of war to plant in his heart a yearning for answers. Why were we here? Why all the death and waste of young men’s lives? For they bled and died before him, and he could not stop the carnage. Where is God in all this? What is happening?

He wanted the truth! But first, survival was the key, and by God’s mercy he survived two rocket attacks and was pulled out of an undertow a day before he was to go home.

He made it back home, enrolled in college, studied literature and religions, and continued to lead a depraved, drug-fueled lifestyle—all the while still searching for the truth! You talk about mercy—God patiently waiting for him to awake unto righteousness.

It was then that the epiphany came: The old self had to die. That was his sign. Whoever told him this truth would have his heart.

He went on a three year search for a religion or philosophy that would show him how the old self can die and leave the body alive. He visited the temples of the Eastern religion; they did not know how to get rid of the old self. He searched and searched, growing more cynical each day.

And he had just about given up when the answer came in April 1971. It was a little house-church with 15 people present. And the preacher with his infectious smile and confidence began to teach Romans 6, as if he already knew what the young man’s sign was.

“Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.”

The young man stopped the preacher. The silence pounded in his ears. “Is this talking about the death of the old self?”

“That is exactly what it’s talking about, the death of our old sinful nature,” the joyful preacher said. He continued reading, “For he that is dead is freed from sin. Now…” But the young man could not hear the words, for they were just sounds now, faintly flowing down a long hollow tube, bypassing his ears. He had heard enough for one day, for he had found his sign…

That young man was me. It took me a month or so to come to grips with the shock I was in. But when I finally surrendered to the Savior according to that first message in Romans 6, the drugs, cigarettes, alcohol, cursing, infidelities, and all the other sins fell completely away. It was an amazing conversion, as my wife Linda and I became missionaries. And I thank God every day for His mercy on me.

What the joyful preacher shared with me that day was repentance that starts at the cross and is the first apostles’ doctrine. To be like the early apostles, we must do what they did. And “they continued stedfastly” in the doctrine of Christ, and they made it their own (Acts 2: 42; Hebrews 6: 1-2).

[Since you made it to the end of my testimony, I encourage you to order my book, The Apostles’ Doctrine, the seven teachings of Christ. Christ took money off of the table; so have I. The book is free with free shipping. The hireling pastors ask for gifts from you. Christ’s Spirit gives a gift to you. You need it. Just ask for it by name using my email: HalleluYah! Praise Yah! ]

Kenneth Wayne Hancock


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5 responses to “Young Man’s Journey from Death to Life

  1. james gordon

    Beautiful conversions, I myself being with the 18 th Surg came home very broken. PTSD, anger, alcohol and many things. My wife’s strong Christian beliefs turned my life around and to Christ.

    • Thanks for your comment, James. Had Christ not put His hand on me, I would have spun out of this life, dying young, a wasted sack of sad flesh. Thank you for your service and for your conversion to Christ. He is there at our entrance to the bottom of the pit of despair. Keep in touch. Wayne

  2. Dennis Uhles

    After reading your articles I was impressed how closely aligned your views are with John and Charles Wesley. Wesley believed that after one repents he then goes on to crucify the old self “the sarx”, carnal self and He fills that heart with “agape” perfect love thus enabling one to “love God with all the heart, soul, mind and strength and thier neighbor as thmselves” A question Wesley would as his followers was “have you entered into the experience of perfect love?” Wesley used the term “Christian perfection” meaning a perfection of the heart, love and motive. “Be ye perfect even as your Father in heaven is perfect” Tjhis is tdhe “holiness wothout which no man shall see God” PTL!

    • Thank you so much for your comment, Dennis. Wesley believed that righteousness was obtainable after one’s own “crucifixion with Christ.” He gives us a new heart, which is like that song from childhood: “This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.” As we grow, the light that we bear grows and grows as we walk “in the faith of the Son of God.” He grows within these earthly vessels by us walking in the “apostles’ doctrine” and the seven additions to the faith, as introduced by the apostle Peter (II Peter 1).

      So good to hear from you. Please comment again. Love to hear from you. I would love to hear more of your personal testimony as well as Christ’s work done through your church.
      May Christ bless and keep you. Wayne

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