Rickey Wagoner
Ohio bus driver Rickey Wagoner was shot three times after he pulled over to fix the bus. Police say a New Testament in his pocket likely saved his life.

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The gospel of Jesus saves lives from eternal damnation, but for one Ohio man, the Bible literally saved his life—from gunfire.

Rickey Wagoner, 49, pulled over the city bus he drives on Monday after experiencing electrical problems with the vehicle.

Shortly after he pulled to the side of the road at approximately 5:20 a.m., three teenage boys approached the bus driver.

The teens reportedly fired three gunshots at Wagoner—two aimed at his chest and a third hitting his leg. The second teen stabbed him in the arm with a knife while the third punched and kicked him.

One of the teens allegedly instructed another that he must “kill the polar bear” in order to be “all the way in the club,” WHIO-TV reports.

Wagoner used an aluminum pen he carried for self-defense to stab one of the attackers in the leg after he was stabbed in the arm. The three boys then ran away, and the one holding the pistol dropped it. Wagoner fired after them as they ran, according to the Dayton Daily News.

Wagoner then called 911 and told the dispatcher, “I’ve been hit in the leg. My chest feels like I’ve been hit with a sledgehammer.”

Though he was shot in the chest twice, a copy of the New Testament saved his life.

“I’ve got a book in my pocket, and I don’t think they made it through this book,” he said.

Sgt. Michael Pauley with the Dayton Police says the New Testament in Wagoner's chest pocket stopped the bullets.

“There was obviously some kind of intervention in this incident, because he probably should not be here,” Pauley told reporters.

Wagoner, who says he just started carrying the Scriptures in his pocket a week before the incident, was hospitalized. His injuries are not life-threatening.

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