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The Birth Of The Church


Paul’s Letter To The Church.


This all started at lunch with an old friend. He had brought a colleague of his and we shared the gospel by using one simple question, “Who is at your center?” By drawing diagrams on a restaurant napkin the first version of Jesus at the Center was born that day with my friend who is now in heaven. Using the same concepts I am happy to present to you this handbook to walking people through the simplicities of faith, and who lies at the center of their heart.

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Jesus at the Center
Simple Bible Commentary by Rick Soto

The Simple Bible Commentary series focuses on the richness of Jesus, clear sound theology, and accurate history.

The Bible was not written for academics but for God’s people, given as a gift, helping them to love, worship, and enjoy him. Simple things have depth and roots; they are true, often in the most obvious way. To simply enjoy the word simply is not to err in theology, history, or any other academic discipline, but to value most what God values. The Book of Philippians commentary is a short book is rich in history, theology, and spiritual growth, opening wide large doors into the richness of Jesus.

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“Pastor Rick Soto’s exposition of the Letter to the Philippians is entitled “Simple Commentary” but don’t let the phrase cause you to undervalue it! It is powerful, enlightening, challenging, and manages to be an enjoyable read at the same time. Dip in anywhere and sample; you’ll enjoy it. As a historian by both training and vocation, I appreciate and value the attention to detail. As a 21st century believer, I applaud the many connections that Simple Commentary: Philippians makes to life in the world and the Church today.”

Brock ThoeneCo-author of The AD Chronicles and The Little Books of WhyThe most complicated thing to do is make things simple.

“Rick Soto is a scholar and pastor who understands not only the depth of the scriptures, but has the boots-on-the-ground pastoral experience with people that makes the Bible come alive for our everyday lives. Study the Bible with one hand in this commentary to help you not only understand, but live out God’s Word.”

John BurkePastor and New York Times Bestselling author of Imagine Heaven and No Perfect People Allowed

Rick Soto

Pastor of The Ranch Church,
Santa Ynez Valley CA

I love teaching the scriptures, I’m way old school in my approach, precept by precept is my thing.  The joy of my life is praying, studying, and teaching scripture.

I also enjoy Martial Arts, my ethnic Caribbean foods, ice cream, cast iron cooking, and guacamole.

I want to help you love and enjoy the Bible, so everything on this site is free.

What is the Bible?

The Bible is the Word of God, inerrant, inspired, and of divine origin.

The Bible is historical and communicates human history accurately.

The Bible has the final say on truth.

What About God?

God is loving, and can do nothing to contradict his love.

God is Trinity—One God living as three persons, yet each is fully divine.

God is wonderful, joyful, pure, holy, and cannot be corrupted.

God always has been.

What About People?

People are loved by God, even though they consistently live in opposition to him.

People have what I like to call limited moral goodness. Sinners can do good things, but the ability to do some good things in no way shape or form makes a person right before God—only Jesus can do that for them.

Sin badly damaged all people to the point where they cannot help make a mess of their lives.

People are made in the image of God.

What About Jesus?

He is God.
He is the second person of the Trinity.
He is the second Adam.
He was born of the Virgin Mary.
He lived a sinless life.
He lived a miraculous life.
He died on the cross.
He rose from the dead on the third day.

He paid the complete penalty for sin.
He ascended into heaven.
He is coming back.

How is Someone Saved?

Believe in God and his love.
Repent of sin.
Place Jesus as Lord and Master of their life.
Live from a born again heart.

Contact Pastor Rick