While in college at the University of Tennessee, he was named Academic All-American and Academic All-SEC. He is also a member of the 1996 US Olympic Baseball team that won a bronze medal. He is a pitcher for the Atlanta Braves and one of only two active players in the majors who is skilled at throwing a knuckleball as a primary pitch. He has also played for the Texas Rangers, New York Mets, and Toronto Blue Jays among other teams. In 2012, he played in his first All-Star Game, became the first knuckleball pitcher to win the Cy Young Award, and in 2013 received an honorary doctor of sacred letters degree from Wycliffe College in Toronto.
He describes his life and salvation experience in a 2015 article for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. In June of 2007, his life, professional baseball career, and marriage were falling apart. Under the intense pain of being sexually abused by a 13-year-old female babysitter at the age of 8 and being molested by an older teenager in that same year, he felt the best way out was through suicide. At 32, he jumped into the Missouri River but it wasn’t God’s time for him to go. One of his teammates tracked him along the riverbank and reached in to pull him out of the river’s darkness.
God mercifully saved his life. He said, “I felt like He had a strong pull on my heart from then on. Whether I always pursued that was something else, but He always pursued me. Only God’s imagination can script a story like mine….I am amazed—and I’m not. I know that sounds funny. I feel loved, sure, and His grace is abundant in my life, but I also feel a responsibility. He’s given me things to do. It makes me feel like a tool in a good sense of the word, like he’s using me to make a difference this side of eternity. I feel a real purpose in that. That’s just His way. It also helps me to believe in a God that big. I’m never hopeless.”
He wrote in his 2012 memoir, “Wherever I Wind Up”: “The Missouri may not be holy water and people may not go there to be baptized and seek absolution of their sins, but nobody can tell me that God didn’t use it to humble me and help me and recharge my faith and reset my focus. I jumped in to prove my worth and failed spectacularly, but wound up with one of the greatest gifts of my life. What a deal. What a day—the day God’s grace showed me how to stop clinging … and start living.”
His name is Robert Allen Dickey.
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 Robert Allen Dickey gave his life to Christ, 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!