Remembering Ruth Hunt
It’s difficult to put into words the love and admiration that we at TBC have for Ruth Hunt, Dave’s wife of more than 60 years. She had grace and strength of character seldom seen these days. Ruth understood what it meant to be the help “meet” (or suitable) for her husband (Genesis:2:18) and was often invited to speak to women’s groups on being a godly woman. Ruth was not only a woman who knew what that meant, but she lived it every day. Her love and admiration for Dave were obvious to all, and yet she had her own mind and her own strengths that went far beyond her wifely characteristics. Ruth was a very gifted writer herself, and this talent contributed to her ability to help Dave with the editing and polishing of many of his books. Dave always said, “Ruth is my first editor!” She was also a generous helper to women everywhere and made lasting friendships wherever her travels took her. She had the ability to see beneath the surface and thus was an excellent one to turn to for advice on practically any matter. So discerning was she that one would never want to try to put something past her. She would have seen through it in a moment!
We at The Berean Call wanted to express our own memories of Ruth in a personal way. What follows are some of the comments by staff members on why they will miss this amazing, gifted woman who was our dear friend.
Barb: As Dave’s editor, I had a lot of interaction with both Dave and Ruth over the years. Ruth and I would go through Dave’s writing after she had done her editing, and we would discuss these things from every angle. We worked well together. Always gracious, she was often willing to change her mind on an editorial fine point if she could be convinced of its worthiness, and there were other points that I knew better than to argue!
As regal as was her bearing, there was a tender and honest heart underneath. When I was very new at TBC and my primary job was entering names into the database, Ruth came in and asked me if I had brought her book back to the office. The book in question was Sparrow on a Housetop, now renamed A Very Present Help. At that point, it was out of print, and she didn’t want to lose her last copy. I had heard her talking to some of the ladies about the book, but I had never read it, which I told her. She was kind but insisted that she had given it to me, and in fact had placed it in my hands “right here by the sink” in our little office kitchen. I kept repeating that I hadn’t seen the book, although I did remember asking her questions about it in that very location, and she was feeling a bit frustrated. I, of course, felt terrible, wondering if I really could have taken the book absentmindedly from her and brought it home and forgotten about it. It seemed unlikely, but it was possible!
About a week later, Dave and Ruth blessed us with their presence at our morning prayer meeting. When Tom McMahon asked if there were any prayer requests or praise reports, Ruth stood up and said, “Not until I say something!” She then came over to where I was sitting and got down on her knees, saying, “I owe this lady an apology! I accused her of something that she never did. Barb, please forgive me!” as she kissed my hand! I was astonished and broken by her sweet humility. (It turned out that she had loaned the book to a neighbor, who unexpectedly returned it one evening.) We laughed about that many times over the years.
Ruth and Dave’s kindness to my daughter Christie and me was immeasurable during some very difficult years that we went through. Many was the Friday evening that we were invited over for dinner, followed by tea and little cakes served from a beautiful silver tray while we watched some of the classic BBC movies—most of them Charles Dickens’ works—with the Hunts. Sometimes Dave would retire upstairs to work on his books, and we “girls” would have wonderful chats in the cozy sitting room.
I looked up to Ruth as someone whom I would never become but, oh, how I wished that I could! Such kindness (as you will read in some of the following staff comments) is hard to find, especially from one who was so busy doing so many other important things!
When she moved down to Southern California after Dave’s passing, she lived with her son Jon and his wife, Missy, and her grandchildren. The rest of her family lived nearby, and thus she was in the very best of places. Christie and I had moved down to Santa Ana two years before this, and so she was only about an hour and a half from my house. We went to visit her almost once every week during the time that she remained there. We were honored to be able to go and see her once more before she was released from “the body of this death” that had worked so tirelessly and selflessly for so long, and to be able to tell her that we loved her one last time and kiss that sweet forehead goodbye. Her leaving this earth has left a huge hole in my heart, but I know that we will see each other again!
Sally: Ruth demonstrated such care and concern for others. She was always on the lookout for the one in the crowd who appeared lonely and would pour all her attention on that one until she was certain that they were feeling loved. I learned so much about God’s love simply by watching Ruth in action. During Dave’s many months at the nursing home, it wasn’t unusual to find Ruth helping not only Dave but other residents as well. My husband and I were blessed to spend many hours with Dave and Ruth during those months. Ruth’s grace, which was simply a reflection of her Savior’s, was always evident.
Something I will miss tremendously is having Ruth come around the corner into my work area and hearing her say, “There she is, hard at work!” I would usually jump up, give her a hug and kiss, and relieve her of whatever burden she had carried in. I always offered to fix her a cup of coffee and, after her “office business” was complete, we would sit down together and chat for a few minutes. She never stayed for very long because she had to get back to Dave, but I treasure those times.
I will never forget the day that Dave passed. Ruth called us within minutes with the news, but she assured me that she didn’t need me to come to her, she was going to clear Dave’s belongings from his room at the nursing home and then she would go home, make some phone calls, and try to rest. I could tell by her firm tone that this was something she intended to do on her own. I continued on with my work through the early afternoon, but then I heard her familiar footsteps and she rounded the corner. I jumped up to greet her and she practically melted in my arms. She spent the rest of the afternoon with us, her TBC family, as we shed tears, shared hugs, and rejoiced in the wonder that Dave was with the Lord!
I have a number of sweet little treasures that Ruth brought back to me from their final few years of travel – beautiful towels from Brazil, a delicately crocheted bookmark from France, a lovely china plate from Hong Kong, a charming cookbook from England – but my most-valued treasures are the notes in my Bible that indicate a special gem that Ruth shared with me. One note in particular is found at 1 Peter:3:15, many of us know that portion well because of the exhortation to “be ready always to give an answer to every man…,” but Ruth’s exhortation was related to the opening words: “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts.” Ruth posed a question that continues to encourage me in my walk, ”Is my heart a place wherein God may dwell comfortably?” Thank you, Lord, for the gift of such a friend as Ruth!
Tom: In the early years of my working with Dave on various projects, including The Seduction of Christianity, I was living in Oxnard, CA, and he and Ruth and their son Jon resided in Northridge near the campus of Cal State Northridge University, where Jon attended. They were living in a modest 3-bedroom home that was a 100-mile round-trip commute from my house. Dave’s office was in one bedroom, and Jon and his parents occupied the other two.
In order to cut down on my travel costs (known to some as my being “frugalicious”), I would stay at their house a couple of nights a week. To give you some idea of Ruth’s graciousness, especially as a meticulous homemaker, consider the fact that I slept on their couch, not to mention being a guest at their meals during my stays. If that sounds only slightly inconvenient for my hosts, think about the fact that it went on for a decade, right up until Dave and Ruth left for Bend, Oregon. There is no one I’ve ever known who has demonstrated more than Ruth the wonderful gift of hospitality.
Mark V: A few years ago, I drove out to the Hunt's house. It was a very hot day. Dave had an office with big windows that overlooked the front yard and pond. As I approached the house, I could see him in front of his computer, writing. He would often spend all day and into the night working on a book or newsletter.
As I pulled into the driveway, there was Ruth—pulling Aspen shoots in the yard. With sweat on her brow and a smile on her face, Ruth worked tirelessly, keeping things in top shape at home. She was a wonderful hostess, a helper of others, and mostly Dave's "other half" in his ministry.
Ruth called me a couple of weeks ago from Southern California. I wondered if she was calling to say a last "good bye." Her question: "Mark, do you think it's time to turn off the sprinklers at our house (in Bend) for winter?" Always practical in nature, Ruth was a wonderful presence here at TBC. Bringing goodies into the office, kind cards and letters, and helps for those who were sick or in need—these were all a part of her arsenal. We all miss Ruth and Dave very much.
Jane: After 22 years, I could say a lot. But most of all, I miss Ruth’s visits to the office and her always calling me by the name that my mother called me, “Janie,” and I would call her “Ruthie,” and then we would hug each other.
I miss her always checking up on us, always willing to pray for anything or any burden we were carrying at the time, always giving hugs and shedding tears over our sorrows. She was the most wonderful example of a godly woman that I have ever known, and you could ask her just about anything and she would stop to think about it and give you a godly answer. She was always content to remain in the background, which made me realize what a true servant of God is! May we carry on her example. Missing you, my dear Ruthie!
Glenda: Ruth loved the Lord with all her heart. She was a faithful wife and mother. She used her physical strength to demonstrate to her brothers and sisters that she loved and cared for them. She was a servant with a servant’s heart to all.
Being the lady that she was, she wanted to acknowledge every kind deed done for her and Dave, and every gift that they received, with a proper, handwritten note on a beautiful card or piece of stationery. Ruth faithfully remembered staff member’s birthdays, weddings, births of babies, and special events in so many ways. She gave generously of her time and thoughtfulness to build us up, encourage us, and strengthen the body of Christ as a whole.
Ed: I always appreciated Ruth for her encouragement. She never failed to thank us for our service to the ministry. I remember many an occasion when she would come in and always stop to thank me for "my faithfulness," and it may have been during a time when I wasn’t thinking of myself as the most faithful person in the ministry.
Kay: I always appreciated the way that Ruth not only supported Dave in his ministry, but she supported us as well. She was in the office frequently, usually on some errand of ministry, but she always took the time to walk through the office and greet everyone. When she asked how things were going, I knew she really wanted to know.
Max, the Border Collie: Even though I could tell she really wasn't a dog person, she was always friendly and petted me.
Renee: Sometimes someone has a place in your life whom you may not know well, but just watching them from afar, you realize the great effect their life has had on yours. It was that way with Ruth in my life. I never really got to know her too personally, but she forever changed my life, as did Dave. The tremendous testimony of her complete love for Dave to the very end, through not only the good days but the very difficult ones too. Every single day during Dave’s waning years, she was there to minister to his needs, ignoring her own health concerns and discomfort. She often spoke of her beloved husband and the privilege it was to care for him. Ruth ministered to each of us in ways that words cannot convey. Her absence is profoundly felt.
Philip: I was a really young boy, probably around 7 or 8. There was a birthday party in the Hunt’s neighborhood. I don’t really remember whose party it was. Anyway, all of us boys had to do this little relay race (to win a prize). One of the challenges was to ride a bicycle to the Hunt’s house and recite a verse to Mrs. Hunt and then ride our bike back to the “finish” line. I think we were being timed—going one at a time. Well, my Bible verse was “Jesus wept”! So I rode my bike to their house and I don’t really think I realized how silly I was until Mrs. Hunt answered the door and I said quickly, “Jesus wept.” Mrs. Hunt just chuckled a little and said “Oh my...!”
My most recent memory of her is that she gave my new bride, Lizzie, $50. It was so generous and sweet. She had never even met Lizzie, but she wanted to bless my wife-to-be with a gift. It just showed her beautiful heart.
Gary: One of my favorite memories of Ruth is when she came in to record the audio version of her book East Wind. There were several Russian words that she had to read, and at one point I stopped her and questioned her on her pronunciation. She looked at me for a moment, and then asked, “Do you know Russian?”
“No,” I joked back, “but I know a few Russians.”
“Then you should just be quiet!” she replied, going back to her reading.
That was the kind of friendship that we always had. She could dish it out and she could take it. She will be missed.
Priscilla: I didn’t get to know Ruth really well, but I wish that I could have spent a lot more time with her and been able to learn from her. One thing that touched me was that when Ruth found out I was moving out of my parents’ house, she offered to give me all of the old kitchen appliances that she didn't need anymore. I thought that was very sweet and thoughtful of her!
Mark D: As her husband would not have hesitated to testify, Ruth Hunt was a faithful model of biblical womanhood in her essential role as Dave's number one help "meet" for him. Not only was their love and fidelity constantly modeled to staff, but Ruth's genuine affection and affirmation of her husband was as constant as his was for her. A testament to their selflessness lives on in the dedication pages of their published writings. On top of this, Ruth managed to inquire regularly about the needs and wellbeing of staff and their families, often remembering the smallest details of prayer requests. Ruth was also a truly gifted writer in her own right, a delightful hostess, and a blessing to all who knew her. May a new generation of daughters, wives, and mothers continue to be impacted by her example of Spirit-filled modesty, tempered reserve, and quiet strength, and love for our Saviour.
Here is a link to the Spanish translation: Recordando a Ruth Hunt
This is Ruth's video, made when Dave and Ruth celebrated their 60th anniversary:
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More about Dave Hunt
Born in 1926, David Charles Haddon Hunt enjoyed the advantages of a godly upbringing and placed his trust in Jesus Christ as his personal Savior and Lord in his early teens.
As a young man, he served in the military toward the end of World War II. Afterward, he attended UCLA and received a degree in mathematics. It was during that time that he met the love of his life, Ruth Klassen. In 1950, they were married, and since both loved the outdoors, they enjoyed a beautiful honeymoon hiking in the High Sierras—perfect for two young people madly in love and with very little money to their name. Marriage was soon followed by the birth of two sons and two daughters. Ruth was a busy mother and also a gifted writer herself. She had a tremendous interest in and knowledge of history, a gift that would help Dave further down the road. Dave’s own career path led him into a position as a CPA/management consultant and later as the manager of several corporations.
Along with church-related activities, Dave initiated and became involved in numerous campus ministries and meetings in their home, with a special outreach to Jewish young people and foreign students. Many of these have stayed in touch with Dave and Ruth through the years, fondly recalling their times spent in Bible studies at the Hunts’ house.
Dave and Ruth also traveled abroad, spending time in various locations throughout Europe, meeting with believers there and ministering in many ways while raising their own family. Dave also brought Bibles and other materials into the Soviet Union during a time when it was very difficult to do so. Throughout his later years, he and Ruth traveled extensively as he was invited to speak in churches and fellowships, large and small, all over the world. Often they stayed in people’s homes, dining with them, learning their customs, and sharing God’s Word and God’s love.
The desire of Dave’s heart was ultimately to be involved in fulltime ministry, especially since he saw firsthand everywhere he went the breaking down of the true church as the world began to work its way into her midst. He began to write in 1973, warning believers about the incursion into Western culture and into the church itself of Eastern religion, psychological and selfist philosophies, ecumenism, and other unbiblical teachings.
The ministry of The Berean Call was founded by Dave in 1992. It grew out of a previous organization, of which Dave was also a founding member since 1986. With T.A. McMahon working alongside him at The Berean Call, Dave was able to share his love for and defense of Christ in the subsequent newsletters, books, videos, and speaking engagements that resulted from this ministry. Dave and T.A. wrote three books together, including the best-known The Seduction of Christianity, which was groundbreaking in its boldness, exposing false teachings in the church and daring to identify the names of the ones behind the deception.
By the early 2000s, Dave’s love for Christ and his desire to defend the name of the Lord had grown even stronger, and his concern over Islamic politics and religion are reflected in many of his articles, lectures, books, and interviews.
Then Richard Dawkins and the “new atheists” came onto the scene with a vengeance, seeking to destroy the very concept of God in the minds of everyone. Dave began to write and teach and speak more passionately than ever about the absolute truth that is in the Word of God and our need to immerse ourselves in it daily in order to prevent being taken up in the evolutionist delusion that is sweeping the world.
One of Dave’s favorite activities was to see whom God would seat next to him on airplanes as he traveled and spoke. He often said that he “could prove the existence of God” just by these providential occurrences. While writing about Islam, he would end up seated next to a Muslim who didn’t really understand what Islam was about but was eager to hear the difference between the Bible and the Qur’an. When Dave was writing about creation vs. evolution, the Lord would bring him, as a seat companion, an atheistic scientist who thought he had all the answers and was very surprised that there was another verifiable explanation to this universe.
Dave’s bold yet loving approach to any situation allowed him entrance into these conversations where many others would have been shut out. His love for Jesus, for Israel, and for people in general was obvious to all. His enthusiasm for the truth, along with his anger over the sin and wickedness that he knew was robbing people of what God wanted for them, flamed his desire to share the Lord with anyone with whom he had contact.
At least 4 million copies of his books have been sold, many of them translated into more than 50 languages. They include: The Cult Explosion; The God Makers (with Ed Decker); The Seduction of Christianity (with T.A. McMahon); Global Peace and the Rise of Antichrist; Peace, Prosperity, and the Coming Holocaust; The New Spirituality (with T.A. McMahon); Whatever Happened to Heaven?; Occult Invasion; A Woman Rides the Beast; A Cup of Trembling; In Defense of the Faith; An Urgent Call to a Serious Faith; To Russia with Love (with Hans Kristian); What Love Is This?; Countdown to the Second Coming; Seeking and Finding God; Honest Doubts; Judgment Day!: Islam, Israel, and the Nations; Yoga and the Body of Christ; and his final book, Cosmos, Creator, and Human Destiny.
He also wrote two novels, The Mind Invaders (formerly The Archon Conspiracy) and Sanctuary of the Chosen, along with a children’s book called The Money Tree, illustrated by his daughter Karen.
This is by no means a complete listing of all of Dave’s works. One of his videos, Israel, Islam & Armageddon, has become a tremendous tool for churches and for anyone interested in helping to spread the truth about events prior to and since the attack on the World Trade Center. His video A Woman Rides the Beast is a favorite among those who are witnessing to Catholics, a group for whom Dave had a deep love and sorrow, desiring to see them come to the knowledge of the truth.
Dave Hunt’s own drive to find and then deliver the truth is evident in everything he did. His impeccable research and recognized scholarship were based on in-depth studies of original documents and publications, interviews with key experts from around the world, and extensive travel—including to South America, Australia, Europe, India, and throughout the Middle East.
Dave has left us a legacy of inestimable value. We are blessed to be able to see and hear and read what he has taught about the evidence for God in a breathtaking number of materials. From explaining about the history of Christianity, to exposing the deception that has crept into the church, to teaching about the prophecies that are being fulfilled even today, this humble, brilliant man will go on teaching us for a very long time. We look forward to the day when we will see him again.
This article has been translated into Spanish, click here to read it!
There were no public services for Dave and Ruth.
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