About Dr. Casey Smith
Casey Smith was born on January 19, 1972 to wonderful Christian parents, Gary and Rita Smith of Hickory, North Carolina. His home environment was consecrated to the love for and knowledge of the Gospel. Although he was raised in a Christian home, there was a storm of rebellion brewing in his heart.
Prior to attending college, he excelled in sports and became competitive as he matured. By the time he was thirteen, he was already being told by coaches that he had the ability to be a professional athlete one day. And so, as he excelled on the football and baseball fields, the pride and self-sufficiency in making his own future began to take a hold of his heart.
In highschool, Dr. Smith did just enough to get by academically. His thoughts dwelled on his athletic accomplishments with his academics taking a back seat. When asked about his highschool years, Dr. Smith commented by saying: "I actually was so naive to think that I'd breeze by in my studies with athletics carrying me into a professional career by 21. In light of that ignorance; I did not put the effort into my studies that I should have. It seemed like I could only dream of making millions in the pros and having all the things my heart desired. Like many teenagers, I was blinded by ignorance and pride."
Having been recruited by many Division I & II university football programs, Dr. Smith expected that a full scholarship would, and his future plans would be off to a start. Well, those dreams weren't realized when the coach at a certain university had resigned leaving all previous offers on the table that included a football scholarship. It was a huge blow to his ego and began in his mind what he refers to as "rebellious freefall..just mad at the world."
Dr. Smith enrolled early during the summer of 1990 at Western Carolina University in order to try out as a walk-on with the football team. He made the team, but all scholarship funds had been committed for the season so, his parents arranged for the cost of tuition, room and board. Because he was not housed in the player's dorm, he was assigned to a general student dorm sharing a suite with other students far away from what would otherwise have been a much more disciplined environment.
One of his first experiences was an open fraternity party on campus. To give you an idea of why Dr. Smith used the term "freefall", he consumed on that night, almost an entire case of beer. Up until that night, he had a couple of beers in one sitting! It was an example of how the enemy of his soul was stretching his propensity to bear the fruit of a wicked heart.
Thus began a life that Dr. Smith refers to as a "seduction away from all that is good and right." With an ever increasing desire for alcohol and drugs, Dr. Smith's life literally turned upside down overnight! He stepped into a mindset that was ready-made with the pleasures of this world, and he loved pleasure rather than God. By the end of his Sophmore year, he had left the football program and along with his experimenting with drugs and alcohol; he was expelled from the university. In an effort to help, a university Resident Advisor suggested Dr. Smith attend a local AA meeting and seek the help of university support groups, but Dr. Smith said, "my pride had swelled to point of complete spiritual blindness and my heart was depraved as I refused help. All this time, my parents were oblivious to the depth of my depravity. Like Satan himself, I was a great deceiver blaming every thing and everyone but myself for the fruit of my decisions."
When Dr. Smith came home, his parents suggested that he could sit out for a semester while picking up credits at the local community college. This was to be a temporary solution that would bridge the gap until he could return to WCU once the probation period had been honored. He agreed half-heartedly to appease his parents, but had no intentions of returning to the university.
Once his parents discovered how he was living, his Father made a bold and Godly decision to give him an ultimatum. He was instructed that he would either live according to God's Word or get out! While reflecting on that day, Dr. Smith said, "My parents integrity was and still is second to none. They loved me, but they refused to live in agreement with my life if it meant dishonoring Christ. My Father's wisdom was that if they disregarded my lascivious ways, they'd be turning their back on God. What a Godly example for parents! I praise God for them, and often point other parents to them as a testimony of how God honours the prayers of faithful Christian parents. My Father explained that he had entrusted my life to God from the day of my birth and would trust Him with my soul. The bags were packed and it was time for the prodigal to go into his far country of independance."
At 20 years of age, Dr. Smith had the independance his carnal heart hungered for. He took that opportunity to fall further into sin. He continued to feed his desire within the world of nightclubs and bars among "friends." His parents continued to pray for his salvation and reminded him of it on every occasion they were together. In his testimony, Dr. Smith said, 'I can remember thinking even while under the influence of drugs, how my parents must be praying for me. Having survived two potentially fatal car accidents in two year's time, I am now sure of the Lord answering their prayers!"
Dr. Smith didn't realize that the sense of guilt he began experiencing, even while in his sins, was the beginning of God's Holy Spirit working through those prayers! Much like the process of childbirth, the Holy Spirit began speaking to his heart with "Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." He attended church with his girlfriend at that time in hopes of possibly getting some spiritual "brownie points" as he refers to that day, but came away feeling worse than ever. God was not going to allow him to sit under preaching with a mind of rebellion and walk away feeling justified. Rather than humbling himself, he jumped back into the abyss and actually began drinking harder than ever before.
The following is a portion of Dr. Smith's testimony in his own words:
I am convinced that Satan was coming against me. His assault ran past the 4th quarter and was working overtime in my heart and mind like a crow stealing the seeds of a farmer to prevent a great crop. But God was not to be denied.
In Isaiah 55:11, the Bible teaches that God's Word "shall not return unto Him void, but shall accomplish that which He pleases and prosper in the thing whereunto He sent it." How would that apply to my life? Well, through the prayers of those who loved me, through the pursuing love of the Saviour, and the convicting power of Holy Spirit, I came to repentance for my sins on February 28, 1994. Did I go to a revivial? No. Did I attend a church concert or entertain the conversation of a pastor? No. I was in a nightclub! That's right folks, as the Scripture says of the Lord: "His hand is not shortened that it cannot save." It would not have mattered where I was at physically that night because the conviction of the Holy Spirit in my heart to repent and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ was so overwhelming, I could not resist and would not resist Him!
On the night of my conversion, a group of so-called friends and I were about to go into a nightclub. We had already had quite of bit to drink. Considering the marijuana that was smoked, none among us was in his or her right mind, literally. As we were about to enter the main area, I thought I heard someone say to me "Casey, come with me, leave this place of devils and never return to such a place again!" Just those words! I would have sworn it was audible, but when I asked my friends, "did you hear that???," they said , "man, that's some good stuff!" Naturally, they assumed it was the drugs speaking; and frankly, so did I - until I heard that voice again!
Again the voice came to me, "Casey, come unto to me and leave this place of devils!... I love you and you must live to bring glory to me as you come into my kingdom." Woah!, I thought, I didn't just imagine this, but I heard that voice. I was so adamant about hearing it because I had heard so many other voices before, and this voice didn't sound like those voices. This voice carried authority with it and love, genuine love for my soul! I'd heard that voice before, but it was faint. I heard it as a boy in Sunday School, I heard it from the lips of preachers, I heard it through Mom and Dad, but it was always distant, vague, just a bit too far for me to make the words out, but not this time!
The same voice that knocked the Apostle Paul off his horse spoke to me as I was being drawn unto Him for salvation. The voice was Jesus Christ! Like Joseph running from Potipher's wife, I ran out of that place, went back to my apartment, and cried out to God to forgive me of my sins! In those early morning hours, the Holy Spirit convicted me of sin, righteousness and judgement! Like the early morning hours of the resurrection, the confirmation in my heart was this: "the condemned sinner Casey Smith is not here!...the old man is dead and the new man in Christ has risen!" I didn't even have to tell the devil because the Holy Spirit made the proclamation that was confirmed in my heart that I was now justified by the blood of Christ and could not be taken out of His hands!"
The Holy Spirit pursued with the call of Christ to "repent and believe the Gospel." The sermons I heard growing up, the Sunday School classes, the devotions and good works in my youth, and my family's membership in the local church was not enough to save me from my sins. The sprinkling of water by my Lutheran pastor at that time was the spiritual equivalent of pouring gasoline on an open fire when it was water, the "water of the Word" that was needed to extinguish the fire of judgement that was truly deserved. Had I died the very moment he was sprinkling water and making his claim that I was absolved through a combinatin of his mystic words and water, I'd of fallen into hell soaking wet! It still baffles me how my church assured me that I was a Christian after completing what was termed, Confirmation. As the Scriptures testify, "they have a zeal for God but not according to knowledge."
What my church failed to teach me because of it's own ignorance and rebellion was that the only Confirmation that counted was the one that came from Christ Himself. That call is to repentance! That's called being born again as commanded by the Lord Himself. As for my church, I can only say it is an eternal shame to deceive young people by telling them they have become members of the body of Christ because of some good work- all without being born again as commanded by the Lord Jesus. One question I pose to prospective Lutheran confirmands today is this: Do you love the things that God loves and hate what God hates? When the mind of man looks at sin and hates it while loving righteousness and holiness, we can have confirmation of God's Holy Spirit that we are following Christ.
Looking back to the night I came to repentance, I can remember the time on the clock - it was at around 3 am as I began to pour my heart out in prayer and supplication to God. The only thing I could think of was getting a Bible. I felt sure that God would speak to me if I opened up a Bible. So I ran into my bedroom, and dug out a little red New Testament that I'd kept from when the Gideons had made a distribution at the middle school I attended a decade earlier. I remember asking God, "Lord, give me a word, and I'll know it's your special word just for me!" Keep in mind that for all practical purposes and definitions, I was an alcoholic and drug user!
That is important for you to know because I would have never known where to turn to nor could I have manipulated the text. I turned to John 15:16. When I began to read those verses, I was overcome with joy because I knew that the voice I heard in that nightclub was indeed the voice of the Great Shephered Jesus Christ. I KNEW His voice! He said to me: "Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you."
Like the prodigal son, I came to myself, called my parents, and asked if I could come home and start a new life as a Christian son. My parents rejoiced with me, and opened the doors of their heart and their home to me. I remember the emotional high I experienced as I flushed drugs down the toilet and poured alcohol down the drains before I packed up to leave my apartment. My roommate at that time did not understand and most likely thought I was having some emotional breakdown. Little did He know the true work God had done in me. I have not been the same since that day! I will never be the same since that day! Each day is a new opportunity to reflect the love of Jesus Christ for others.
People need the Gospel! People are wandering while chained in darkness and need the glorious light of the Gospel to shine in their hearts! The power of the Gospel brings eternal life to those who hear the same voice that calls all sinners to repentance, the voice of Jesus. Oh Yes, He is alive forevermore and holds the keys to death and hell. The gates are open to eternal life, but the road is narrow. The only way to make it into that gate is by coming through the blood of Jesus! There is no other way! His blood has been provided to pay for the sins of the world, but the world does not even know Him! My calling in life is to make Jesus known to the world! Amen!
Dr. Smith's new life in Christ was being prepared in stages to bring him to a maturity and knowledge of God's Word. The Lord worked out his career opportunities by providing his needs while giving him the liberty to pursue his education again.
While completing his dissertation requirements, Dr. Smith graduated from Summit Bible College earning a Doctorate of Divinity in 2007. As part of his Doctoral project, he produced a comparative review between Roman Catholicism and Biblical Christianity. The fruit of that labour is his first published book, The Great Gulf between Catholicism and Christianity. Since its realese in 2008; the book has drawn interest internationally. Dr. Smith has plans for a second book in the Fall of 2013 and continues his love of research and writing.
Known for his boldness, Dr. Smith has become a seasoned Bible teacher, an Evangelist, and an author who loves Christ and His people. Among his friends and co-labourers in the ministry, he is often referred to as a "loving and loyal pit bull of the faith" who demonstrates a love for his neighbor as himself while refusing to compromise the Gospel for the sake of so-called political correctness, ecumenicalism or false peace. Dr. Smith understands the controversy that comes by taking the narrow way of the Gospel and remains an encouraging force for the body of Christ as well as a threat to heretical teachings of our day.
As a bi-vocational minister of the Gospel, he maintains his ministry home office in Shelby, North Carolina where he lives with his wife Ee, who is native of Thailand, and their three children Niyah, Sophia and Asher. In 2011, Dr. Smith left the investment banking world and founded Lionshare Investments LLC where he serves as President working with Christian organizations and individuals by teaching Biblically Responsilble investment planning. As a student of the late Dr. Larry Burkett; Dr. Smith's consulting practice offers solutions for retirement, investment, banking, and estate planning needs of individuals and organizations across the country.
In addition to founding Whole Armour Ministries and Lionshare Investments LLC; he has also served as a chaplain for the Republican Party and served as a prison ministry coordinator for The Gideons International. Currently in the works; Dr. Smith is expanding his ministry to India. In May of 2012, Whole Armour Ministries participated in its first outreach to India by sponsoring a worship center for indigenous missionaries to hold worship services and bible lessons for the people of Ravulapalem, India in the state of Adrah Pradesh. While seeking the Lord's will for other church-plant opportunities abroad, Dr. Smith asks that prayers be lifted up for his family and those to whom the Lord sends him to serve. To God be the glory!