A highlight from Saved by Grace - Ed Nelson Biography


Well, greetings everyone. I'm here today with Emily Nelson, a 2016 BJU graduate, somebody I very much want you to meet. She has some exciting things to tell you and I pray that you will hang on with us for just a little while, maybe eight or ten minutes, and be blessed by what Emily has to say. She has written a biography of her grandfather, Dr. Ed Nelson, a graduate of BJU. I've known Dr. Nelson since I was really young. He's a few years older than I am, so you can imagine how ancient he really is, but you'd never know it. He's as energetic as he was when I first knew him. I've never met a man so restless for the cause of Christ and the gospel than Dr. Ed Nelson. Emily, thank you for taking your time to be with us. Thank you for having me. I want a quick question to get into this. Why should anybody want to read about your grandfather, Ed Nelson? Well, I'm biased for sure because it's my grandfather, but he really has had a remarkable life, and it's a life full of the miraculous, a life full of just believing God and expecting him to work. And I know as I helped him write this book, it was a real challenge to my own faith just to believe God at his word and to expect him to work. My grandfather, who loved your grandfather very much, as did my dad and as do I, my grandfather said, every great man at some point comes under the dominating influence of some great truth. What would you say is that dominant truth that gripped your grandfather when he was young and that kind of drove him through his life of ministry? I'd say it was probably this. I am a sinner, and I have a great savior, and I want to do everything I possibly can to further his kingdom because of what he's done for me. That's very well put, and I think it absolutely describes what propelled him through life. He was always in motion. I've never met him when he was not just like a meteor crossing the sky. His energy was remarkable. I've been with him on some long mission trips, and no moss ever grew under his feet. The title of the book is A Sinner Saved by Grace, so that was a good description. Tell me about the time, the point in life, when he became a grace -saved sinner. What was he doing at the time? What influence did God bring into his life that got his attention and brought him to Christ? Well, he grew up on a farm in Windsor, Colorado, which is a little bit north of Denver. He had aspirations of being a great farmer just like his dad was. When he was 17 years old, he was in a farming accident. They were a very moral family, and his dad would take them to church every Sunday, but it was not a Bible preaching church. When he was in that accident, the doctors said he wouldn't make it through the night. He prayed and said, God, if there even is a God, I want you to hear my prayer, and I want you to save my life. If you do, if I live, then I'll get a Bible and I'll read it. Well, he made it. Spoiler alert. He made it, but he did get a Bible, but he didn't understand it until about four years later, your grandfather, actually, Dr. Bob Sr., was preaching at the First Baptist Church in Fort Collins, and his mailman came by and invited him to the revival meetings. He didn't really want to go, but out of respect for the mailman and his testimony, he was like, fine, I'll go. So he went that first night, and your grandfather preached and said that he was a sinner and that he deserved to die. It made him so angry that he found that he would never go back. Well, the next day on the tractor out on the field, he was like, I wonder what he's going to preach about that would make me mad again. And so he went back, and that happened four nights. And on the fourth night, he was like, you know what? What this man is saying is true, and it's not, I haven't been angry at him. I've been angry at God because I know that this is truth. And so he surrendered his life, and he came to know the Lord that evening. And I asked him when I was writing the book with him, I said, Grandpa, what were you saved from? And he was like, I was saved from my own goodness, because he was such a good moral person. He was saved from his own goodness, and he said that he knew deep down inside that there were things that he would think or say or look at that were not godly. And nobody else knew it, but that's what he was saved from. From that point in time, his life changed forever. The self -righteous sinner may be the hardest sinner to open his heart to the Lord.

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