About Ray Comfort
Ray Comfort (born December 5, 1949) is a New Zealand-born Christian. He started Living Waters Publications and The Way of the Master in Bellflower, California, and has written a number of books.
Early life, personal life, and conversion
Born Jewish, Ray Comfort was raised with next to no religious experience; in his words: "I went through life without any Christian instruction at all. I think I went to church about three times in about twenty years. I hated it. I found it an insult to my intellect."
For many years, he served as an itinerant minister and associate pastor in his former hometown of Christchurch, teaching around New Zealand and Australia. In the 1970s, he began open-air preaching, which he has since done several thousand times. Around 1981–1982, he started using the principles of what he calls "Biblical Evangelism" after reading Charles Spurgeon and the New Testament books of Romans and Galatians.
Ray Comfort has designed dozens of gospel tracts since the 1970s, leading to the tract ministry of Living Waters currently selling millions of tracts each year. In 1989, he accepted an offer from Hosanna Chapel (of the Calvary Chapel fellowship) in Bellflower, California, to begin full-time ministry in the United States. Comfort has no theological degree and has had no formal training in theology.
Currently, Ray Comfort lives with his wife Sue in Southern California, and they have three adult children, Rachel, Jacob and Daniel.
In his time in the United States, Ray Comfort has conducted open-air ministry in a variety of venues in southern California. At first, he worked in MacArthur Park in Los Angeles, giving out sandwiches and preaching to the homeless there. At the same time, he led weekly outings to the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica on Friday nights.
In 2003, for roughly two-and-a-half years, Ray Comfort and his son-in-law Emeal "EZ" Zwayne open-air preached at the Bellflower courthouse a few blocks from their ministry. Then in April 2006 he began open-air preaching at the base of the Huntington Beach pier on Saturday afternoons.
The Way of the Master ministry
Origins, theology and media ministry
In late 2001, Ray Comfort paired up with actor Kirk Cameron to launch a ministry called The Way of the Master to teach Christians how to share their faith "simply, effectively, Biblically ... the way Jesus did". Comfort and Cameron were also involved in rewriting some key scenes in the movie Left Behind II: Tribulation Force, which co-starred Kirk Cameron.
Ray Comfort believes that evangelization is the main reason that the Christian Church exists and that many of the evangelistic methods used by the church over the last century have produced more false conversions to Christianity than true ones. The key component Ray Comfort uses is the "Moral Law of God" (The Ten Commandments) to speak about evidence of sin in the lives of his listeners before presenting the gospel of Christ to them. His realization of this method led to him in the mid-1980s to formulate two sermons entitled "Hell's Best Kept Secret" and "True and False Conversions."
Ray Comfort believes there are millions of so called “Christians” who have never been born again. They are Christian by profession, but they have never found a place of true repentance.
Comfort currently continues in itinerant ministry as a preacher and speaker at many churches and evangelism seminars.
Ray Comfort is, together with Kirk Cameron, the co-host of The Way of the Master Television Show, since December 2003. Ray Comfort has also been co-hosting Way of the Master Radio, with Todd Friel, since January 2006.
Interviews and debates
Ray Comfort has debated atheists, including at the 27th National Convention of American Atheists in Orlando, Florida on April 13, 2001 (Good Friday) when Comfort debated Ron Barrier, the National Spokesperson for American Atheists. Despite the hostile crowd, Ray Comfort later stated that "they laughed at my humor, and although there was unified mockery at some of the things that I said, I was able to go through the Ten Commandments, the fact of Judgment Day, the reality of Hell, the Cross, and the necessity of repentance, and no one stopped me."
- - Hollywood Be Thy Name. Bridge-Logos Publishers (2007) ISBN 0882703943
- - Intelligent Design vs. Evolution - Letters to an Atheist (2006), a collection of correspondence between Ray Comfort and James D. Franz, an American atheist.
- - Springboards for Budding Preachers (2006), a transcript of Ray Comfort open-air preaching with his son-in-law Emeal "EZ" Zwayne.
- - The Way of the Master. Genesis Publishing Group (2006) (previously 2004 by Tyndale House)
- - Revival's Golden Key
- - God Has a Wonderful Plan for Your Life.
- - The Way of the Master Minute. (co-author Kirk Cameron) Bridge-Logos Publishers (April 8, 2006) ISBN 0882702203
- - How to Live Forever ... Without Being Religious (2006), a version of the Gospel of John with Ray Comfort's commentary.
- - Whitefield Gold: Pure. Refined. (compiled by Ray Comfort) (2006)
- - Spurgeon Gold: Pure. Refined. (compiled by Ray Comfort) (2005)
- - Overcoming Panic Attacks. Bridge-Logos (July 11, 2005) ISBN 0882700146
- - What Did Jesus Do? A Call to Return to the Biblical Gospel (2005)
- - How to Bring Your Children to Christ ... and Keep Them There (2005)
- - What Hollywood Believes: An Intimate Look at the Faith of the Famous. Genesis Pub. (August 25, 2004) ISBN 0974930016
- - Hell's Best Kept Secret. Whitaker House (December 1989, updated 2004) ISBN 0883682060
- - Scientific Facts in the Bible: 100 Reasons to Believe the Bible is Supernatural in Origin. Bridge-Logos Publishers (October 15, 2001) ISBN 0882708791
- - The School of Biblical Evangelism Textbook (2004)
- - 101 Things Husbands Do to Annoy Their Wives (2004)
- - Out of the Comfort Zone: The Authorized Autobiography. Bridge-Logos Publishers (May 2004) ISBN 0882709437
- - God Doesn't Believe in Atheists (1993, 2001) ISBN 0882709224
- - How to Win Souls and Influence People. Bridge-Logos Publishers (October 1999) ISBN 0882707884