Beware of Billy Graham
By Bro. David Cloud
Way of Life Website
BILLY GRAHAM CONFIRMS HIS OPINION THAT UNBELIEVERS MAY BE SAVED WITHOUT FAITH IN CHRIST (Friday Church News Notes, August 18, 2006, 866-295-4143) Send e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
In an interview published in Newsweek magazine, August 14, Billy Graham confirmed his misguided opinion that men might be saved without faith in Jesus Christ. When asked whether he believes heaven will be closed to Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus or secular people, Graham replied: Those are decisions only the Lord will make. It would be foolish for me to speculate on who will be there and who won't ... I don't want to speculate about all that. I believe the love of God is absolute. He said he gave his Son for the whole world, and I think he loves everybody regardless of what label they have Progress, Newsweek, Aug. 14, 2006). No one would disagree that God will make the decision about man's eternal destiny, but the fact is that He has already made that decision and has revealed it in the Scriptures. It is not speculation to believe the Bible. God does indeed love all sinners and Christ died to make it possible for them to be saved, but the other side of the coin is that only those who repent and trust Christ will be saved. Nothing is more plainly stated in Scripture. He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him (John 3:26). He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life 1 John 5:12). Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved (Acts 4:12). And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned (Mark 16:15-16). But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death (Revelation 21:8). How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him (Hebrews 2:3). See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven (Hebrews 12:25). The second chapter of Ephesians describes the condition of every individual apart from regenerating faith in Jesus Christ. They are dead in trespasses and sins (Ephesians 2:1); they walk according to the prince of the power of the air (Ephessians 2:2); they are by nature the children of wrath (Ephessians 2:3); they have no hope and are without God in the world (Ephessians 2:12). Without faith in Jesus Christ, there is no hope. That is the teaching of God's Word, and it is every evangelists responsibility to warn the people to be saved before it is eternally too late.
Updated and enlarged May 4, 2005 - David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143. Send e-mail: email@example.com
“And Jehu the son of Hanani the seer went out to meet him, and said to king Jehoshaphat, Shouldest thou help the ungodly, and love them that hate the Lord? therefore is wrath upon thee from before the Lord” (2 Chronicles 19:2).
In February 1997, I published an article in O Timothy magazine on Jerry Falwell supporting Billy Graham. We noted that a watershed of sorts had occurred at Falwell’s Liberty University, in that the 1997 commencement speaker was Dr. Billy Graham, the foremost spokesman for the New Evangelical movement. The announcement in the National Liberty Journal stated:
“It is befitting that Dr. Graham will speak at Liberty’s 1997 Commencement, since his grandson, William Franklin (Will) Graham IV, will be among the graduating seniors. (Another grandson, Roy Graham, is a freshman at Liberty.) ... Dr. Falwell said, ‘This will be Dr. Graham’s first visit to Liberty. THIS COMMENCEMENT ADDRESS WILL NO DOUBT BE REMEMBERED HISTORICALLY IN THE NEXT CENTURY AS ONE OF LIBERTY’S HIGH DAYS. I am grateful that Dr. Graham is taking time from his busy schedule to grace us with his presence” (emphasis added) (National Liberty Journal, December 1996, pp. 1, 17).
The National Liberty Journal did not give one word of warning about Graham breaking down the walls of biblical separation between sound churches and apostate churches in this generation. There was not one word of warning about Graham sending thousands of converts back into Roman Catholic and modernistic churches that preach heretical gospels.
Independent Baptist preachers who are supporting Jerry Falwell are leading fundamental Baptist churches right into the arms of the Devil’s ecumenical movement. For example, Falwell was one of the speakers in February at a national Baptist Bible Fellowship conference in San Diego, California. The BBF Tribune announced this in the January issue and included a description of Falwell’s ministry (with no warning about his deep compromise). The Baptist Bible Fellowship is divided into two distinct groups of pastors. One group represents old-fashioned Baptist fundamentalism. The other group represents a New Evangelical-type philosophy. They have a “positive focus,” avoid controversies, fellowship with New Evangelicals, use Contemporary Christian Music, and reject old-fashioned moral standards as legalism. I know many pastors who were once aligned with the Baptist Bible Fellowship but who have disassociated themselves because of the deep compromise that has permeated the fellowship.
In the February 1997 O Timothy article, I agreed with the National Liberty Journal that it was befitting for Graham to speak at Liberty University, because though Dr. Falwell and his church and school claim to be fundamental Baptists, for many years they have been sliding into the New Evangelical camp. Today they are firmly entrenched in that unscriptural position. To openly praise and support Billy Graham is irrefutable evidence of this.
The February 1997 article was also published via the Fundamental Baptist Information Service by e-mail over the Internet, and in turn it was sent out to a Baptist news group, which is a discussion group on the Internet. Many of the responses we received from that public posting were very negative. In reading these, I was impressed anew at the ignorance of many Christians today. Many of those who responded were completely ignorant of the fact that Billy Graham has sent multitudes of converts back to the Roman Catholic Church or that he praises Christ-denying Modernists. These things were not done in the dark, yet many Christians are entirely ignorant of them. A chief cause for this ignorance is cowardice in the pulpits. The average Christian “minister” today is a coward whose goal is to fit in with the popular Christian scene and to make people feel good about themselves rather than to preach the truth regardless of the cost. The Bible describes these men as “dumb dogs”
(Isaiah 56:10). What good is a watchdog that will not bark? If ever there were an hour in which preachers need to lift the voice against the error that is on every side, it is today. What do we have, though? Dumb dogs.
In the article on Falwell supporting Graham, we mentioned a number of things of which Dr. Graham is guilty. Following is the documentation to each of these charges. I realize that most of most of my readers know these facts, but I also realize that it is not always a simple matter to put your hands upon documentation.
BILLY GRAHAM ACCEPTS DEGREES FROM CATHOLIC COLLEGES AND SAYS THE CATHOLIC GOSPEL IS THE SAME AS HIS OWN
On Nov. 21, 1967, an honorary degree was conferred on Graham by the Catholic priests who run Belmont Abbey College, North Carolina, during an Institute for Ecumenical Dialogue. The Gastonia Gazette reported:
“After receiving the honorary degree of doctor of humane letters (D.H.L.) from the Abbey, Graham noted the significance of the occasion--’a time when Protestants and Catholics could meet together and greet each other as brothers, whereas 10 years ago they could not,’ he said.
“The evangelist’s first sermon at a Catholic institution was at the Abbey, in 1963, and his return Tuesday was the climax to this week’s Institute for Ecumenic Dialogue, a program sponsored in part by the Abbey and designed to promote understanding among Catholic and Protestant clergymen of the Gaston-Mecklenburg area.
“Graham, freshly returned from his Japanese Crusade, said he ‘knew of no greater honor a North Carolina preacher, reared just a few miles from here, could have than to be presented with this degree. I’m not sure but what this could start me being called “Father Graham,”’ he facetiously added.
“Graham said... ‘Finally, the way of salvation has not changed. I know how the ending of the book will be. THE GOSPEL THAT BUILT THIS SCHOOL AND THE GOSPEL THAT BRINGS ME HERE TONIGHT IS STILL THE WAY TO SALVATION” (“Belmont Abbey Confers Honorary Degree,” Paul Smith, Gazette staff reporter, The Gastonia Gazette, Gastonia, North Carolina, Nov. 22, 1967).
This is simply amazing. Does Billy Graham really believe that the sacramental grace-works gospel that built Belmont Abbey is the way of salvation? If so, why does Graham preach that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone without works or sacraments? Why does he remain a Baptist rather than joining the Catholic Church? On the other hand, if Graham does not believe Rome’s gospel is true, why did he say what he does? Why does he fellowship with Rome? The evangelist tries to have it both ways, but it is impossible. This is why Graham has been called “Mr. Facing Both Ways”!
BILLY GRAHAM HAS TURNED THOUSANDS OF CONVERTS OVER TO APOSTATE CHURCHES
The evidence for this is overwhelming. We have documented this extensively in our 354-page book Evangelicals and Rome (Way of Life Literature, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061). Send e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
As early as Sept. 21, 1957, Graham said in an interview with the San Francisco News, “Anyone who makes a decision at our meetings is seen later and referred to a local clergyman, Protestant, Catholic, or Jewish.” In 1983, The Florida Catholic (Sept. 2, 1983) reported of the Orlando crusade: “Names of Catholics who had made decisions for Christ were provided at that meeting by Rick Marshall of the Graham organization.” The report said the names of 600 people had been turned over to the Catholic Church. In 1984, at the Vancouver, British Columbia crusade, the vice-chairman of the organizing committee, David Cline of Bringhouse United Church, said, “If Catholic step forward there will be no attempt to convert them and their names will be given to the Catholic church nearest their homes” (Vancouver Sun, Oct. 5, 1984). In 1987 a Catholic priest, Donald Willette of St. Jude’s Church, was a supervisor of the counselors for the Denver crusade. Willette reported that from one service alone 500 cards of individuals were referred to St. Thomas More Roman Catholic Church in Englewood, a suburb of Denver (Wilson Ewin, Evangelism: The Trojan Horse of the 1990s). In 1989, Michael Seed, Ecumenical Advisor to (Catholic) Cardinal Hume, said of Graham’s London crusade: “Those who come forward for counseling during a Mission evening in June, if they are Roman Catholic, will be directed to a Roman Catholic ‘nurture-group’ under Roman Catholic counselors in their home area” (John Ashbrook, New Neutralism II, p. 35). By September 1992, the Catholic archdiocese of Portland, Oregon, had set a goal to supply many of counselors needed for the Graham crusade. All Catholics responding to the altar call were channeled to Catholic churches.
Billy Graham’s crusade in Cincinnati, Ohio, June 27-30, 2002, included full participation of the Roman Catholic Church. In preparation for the crusade, five Catholic parishes -- Our Lady of Lourdes in Westwood, Our Lady of the Rosary in Greenhills, Our Lady of the Rosary and Guardian Angels in Cincinnati, and Trinity Center in Dayton -- presented week-long courses to prepare Catholic counselors to deal with those who came forward in response to Graham’s invitations. According to Curtis Kneblik, assistant director of evangelization for the Roman Catholic archdiocese of Dayton, invitations were sent out to 9,000 Catholics to request their participation in this training, and hundreds responded. Priest Charles Bowes told his parish that the Graham mission was a “golden opportunity to evangelize Catholics and to help our parish…” (The Catholic Telegraph, May 10, 2002). When Catholic leaders refer to “evangelizing Catholics,” they do not mean what Bible believers mean, that such Catholics are unsaved and on their way to hell. They believe, rather, that the Catholics who go forward at the Graham crusade already have Christ through their infant baptism and that that they merely need to be brought into a more active relationship with the Catholic Church. When Catholics hear of “receiving Christ,” they do not think in terms of receiving Christ once-for-all through faith in His blood. They think, rather, in terms of Catholic doctrine, which teaches that they receive Christ continually in the church sacraments, such as the mass, yet they can never be assured of eternal life because the Catholic gospel is a mixture of faith plus works. Kneblik admitted this when he said: “We have an altar call every Sunday. Christ is truly present (in the Eucharist). We have to stand up and walk toward Him like they did on that field” (The Catholic Telegraph, July 12, 2002). This is the false christ of the mass. The Catholics who went forward in the Graham crusade were subsequently invited to join a Catholic study group in their area. The strong Catholic participation was not mentioned in the official Billy Graham material on the crusade, but the information can be found at the Roman Catholic diocese web site.
Graham’s June 1996 crusade in Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota, brought the participation of 119 Catholic parishes and 269 Lutheran congregations (Christianity Today, July 15, 1996). This represented 53 percent of the Catholic parishes. This is a dramatic change from the 1973 Minneapolis crusade, when no Catholic churches and only a few Lutheran churches participated. Archbishop Harry Flynn, head of the archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, urged priests to become involved in the crusade “in an effort to reach alienated Catholics” (Morphew Clark, St. Paul Pioneer Press, Jan. 13, 1996). Priest Robert Schwartz of the St. John Neumann Catholic parish told reporters that about 60 members of his parish had been trained to counsel those who came forward during the crusade.
In 1997, Graham said that nearly all of his crusades are supported by Roman Catholic churches. He said this in an interview with New Man magazine, published (at that time) by Promise Keepers. Fol-low-ing is his statement on Catholicism: “Early on in my life, I didn’t know much about Catholics. But through the years I have made many friends within the Roman Catholic Church. In fact, when we hold a crusade in a city now, nearly all the Roman Catholic churches support it. And when we went to Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn., for the crusade [last year], we saw St. Paul, which is largely Catholic, and Minneapolis, which is largely Lutheran, both supporting the crusade. That wouldn’t have happened 25 years ago” (“Billy Graham in His Own Words: What the Evangelist Has Learned from a Lifetime of Ministry to the World,” New Man, March-April 1997, pp. 32, 33).
The Billy Graham organization preparing for the November 2004 crusade in Los Angeles, California, promised the Roman Catholic archdiocese that Catholics will not be “proselytized.” A letter from Cardinal Roger Mahony, dated October 6, 2004, and posted at the archdiocese web site, stated: “When the Crusade was held in other locations, many Catholics responded to Dr. Graham’s message and came forward for Christ. Crusade officials expect the same for the Los Angeles area. These officials have assured me that, IN KEEPING WITH DR. GRAHAM’S BELIEF AND POLICY, THERE WILL BE NO PROSELYTIZING, AND THAT ANYONE IDENTIFYING HIM OR HERSELF AS CATHOLIC WILL BE REFERRED TO US for reintegration into the life of the Catholic Church. We must be ready to welcome them.” Roman Catholic actor Jim Caviezel was featured on the platform at the second night of the Billy Graham Los Angeles Crusade, which lasted from Nov. 18-21. Caviezel starred as “Jesus” in Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ. He says he prayed to St. Genesius of Arles and St. Anthony of Padua for help in his acting career. He has visited Medjugorje to witness the site where Mary allegedly appeared to six young people. Caviezel said, “This film is something that I believe was made by Mary for her Son.” Caviezel prayed the Rosary to Mary every day during the filming. Is it that Graham believes Caviezel’s gospel, or is it that Caviezel believes Graham’s gospel, or is it that the biblical truth that two must be agreed before they walk together is no longer in force today? What confusion and open disobedience!
This is just the tip of the iceberg. For many decades, Billy Graham has turned large numbers of his converts over to the hands of wolves in sheep’s clothing such as Catholic priests and modernistic Protestant pastors.
BILLY GRAHAM SAYS HIS GOAL IS NOT TO LEAD ROMAN CATHOLICS OUT OF CATHOLICISM
In his 1997 autobiography, Just As I Am, Graham said his goal was not to lead people out of Roman Catholicism: “MY GOAL, I ALWAYS MADE CLEAR, WAS NOT TO PREACH AGAINST CATHOLIC BELIEFS OR TO PROSELYTIZE PEOPLE who were already committed to Christ within the Catholic Church. Rather, it was to proclaim the gospel to all those who had never truly committed their lives to Christ” (Graham, Just As I Am, p. 357).
BILLY GRAHAM THINKS THE POPE IS AN EVANGELIST AND MORAL LEADER
In 1979 Graham called Pope John Paul II “the moral leader of the world” (Religious News Service, Sept. 27, 1979). He also said that John Paul II “is almost an evangelist because he calls to people to turn to Christ, to turn to Christianity” (The Star, June 26, 1979, reprinted in the Australian Beacon, August 1979, p. 1). In an interview with The Saturday Evening Post (Jan-Feb. 1980), Graham described the visit of John Paul II to America with these words: “The pope came as a statesman and a pastor, but I believe he also sees himself coming as an evangelist ... The pope sought to speak to the spiritual hunger of our age in the same way Christians throughout the centuries have spoken to the spiritual yearnings of every age--by pointing people to Christ.” In a lengthy article about the Pope in 1980, Graham praised the Pope as a “bridge builder” and said: “Pope John Paul II has emerged as the greatest religious leader of the modern world, and one of the greatest moral and spiritual leaders of the century” (Saturday Evening Post, Jan.-Feb. 1980). After visiting the Pope in 1981, Graham said, “We had a spiritual time” (Christianity Today, Feb. 6, 1981, p. 88). Graham made the following statement about the Pope’s address in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1983: “I’ll tell you--that was just about as straight an evangelical address as I’ve ever heard. It was tremendous” (Foundation magazine, Vol. V, Issue 5, 1984).
BILLY GRAHAM SAYS HE IS VERY COMFORTABLE WITH THE VATICAN AND AGREED WITH THE LATE POPE ON ALMOST EVERYTHING
In a January 1997 interview with Larry King, Graham said that he has wonderful fellowship with Rome, is comfortable with the Vatican, and agrees with the Pope on almost everything.
KING: What do you think of the other [churches] ... like Mormonism? Catholicism? Other faiths within the Christian concept?
GRAHAM: Oh, I think I have a wonderful fellowship with all of them.
KING: You’re comfortable with Salt Lake City. You’re comfortable with the Vatican?
GRAHAM: I am very comfortable with the Vatican. I have been to see the Pope several times. In fact, the night — the day that he was inaugurated, made Pope, I was preaching in his cathedral in Krakow. I was his guest ... [and] when he was over here ... in Columbia, South Carolina ... he invited me on the platform to speak with him. I would give one talk, and he would give the other ... but I was two-thirds of the way to China...
KING: You like this Pope?
GRAHAM: I like him very much. ... He and I agree on almost everything.
BILLY GRAHAM SAYS HE IS EQUALLY AT HOME IN ALL CHURCHES
In a May 30, 1997, interview, Graham told David Frost: “I feel I belong to all the churches. I’M EQUALLY AT HOME IN AN ANGLICAN OR BAPTIST OR A BRETHREN ASSEMBLY OR A ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH. ... Today we have almost 100 percent Catholic support in this country. That was not true twenty years ago. And the bishops and archbishops and the Pope are our friends” (David Frost, Billy Graham in Conversation, pp. 68, 143).
BILLY GRAHAM SAYS THAT BAPTISM IS NOT HIS CONCERN
Billy Graham conducted a crusade in St. Louis, Missouri, in October 1999. In an interview with the press, Graham said that baptism is not his concern and not his business. The following is his statement: “Baptism is very important because Jesus taught that we are to believe and to be baptized. But that is up to the individual and the church that they feel led to go to. The churches have different teachings on that. I know that in the Lutheran or the Episcopal or Catholic Church it is a very strong point, and in the Baptist church. But there are some churches that would not insist on baptism. So, I GIVE THEM THE FREEDOM TO TEACH WHAT THEY WANT. I am not a professor. I am not a theologian. I’m a simple proclaimer. … I’m announcing the news that God loves you and that you can be forgiven of your sins. And you can go to heaven. My job from God is not to do all these other things. … I am not a pastor of a church. That’s not my responsibility. MY RESPONSIBILITY IS TO PREACH THE GOSPEL TO EVERYONE AND LET THEM CHOOSE THEIR OWN CHURCH, WHETHER IT IS CATHOLIC OR PROTESTANT OR ORTHODOX OR WHATEVER IT IS” (Billy Graham, interview with Patricia Rice, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, October 10, 1999).
This is a strange statement in light of the explicit command by the Lord Jesus Christ: “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” (Matthew 28:19).
BILLY GRAHAM BELIEVES THE LATE POPE JOHN PAUL II SURELY WENT TO HEAVEN
On Larry King Live aired April 2, 2005, Billy Graham said the late Pope was “the most influential voice for morality and peace in the world in the last 100 years.” When Larry King asked, “There is no question in your mind that he is with God now?” Graham replied: “Oh, no. There may be a question about my own, but I don't think Cardinal Wojtyla, or the Pope -- I think he’s with the Lord, because he believed. He believed in the cross. That was his focus throughout his ministry, the cross, no matter if you were talking to him from personal issue or an ethical problem, he felt that there was the answer to all of our problems, the cross and the resurrection. And he was a strong believer.” This is a most amazing statement by the man who is considered the world’s foremost evangelist. Graham expresses less than certainty about his own salvation but complete certainty about the Pope’s, even though he preached a false gospel of grace mixed with works and sacraments and put his trust in Mary as his intercessor. Graham should know that John Paul II did not believe in the cross in any scriptural sense. Rather he believed in the cross PLUS baptism PLUS the mass PLUS confession to a priest PLUS the saints, and above all PLUS Mary. “And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work” (Romans 11:6). “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel” (Galatians 1:6).
BILLY GRAHAM INVITES CATHOLIC BISHOPS ONTO HIS PLATFORM TO BLESS THOSE WHO COME FORWARD AT HIS INVITATIONS
The Roman Catholic bishop of Sao Paulo, Brazil, stood beside Graham during his 1963 crusade in that city, and blessed those who came forward at the invitation. Graham said this illustrated that “something tremendous, an awakening of reform and revival within Christianity” was happening (Daily Journal, International Falls, Minnesota, Oct. 29, 1963, cited by the New York Times, Nov. 9, 1963).
BILLY GRAHAM SAYS PEOPLE IN OTHER RELIGIONS CAN BE SAVED
In an interview with McCall’s magazine, January 1978, entitled “I Can’t Play God Any More,” Graham said: “I used to believe that pagans in far-off countries were lost—were going to hell—if they did not have the Gospel of Jesus Christ preached to them. I no longer believe that. … I believe that there are other ways of recognizing the existence of God—through nature, for instance—and plenty of other opportunities, therefore, of saying ‘yes’ to God.”
Though Graham later tried to stem the controversy brought about by his comments, he continued to allow for the possibility that the unsaved in other religions might not go to hell if they respond to natural light.
In 1985, Graham affirmed his belief that those outside of Christ might be saved. Los Angeles reporter David Colker asked Graham: “What about people of other faiths who live good lives but don’t profess a belief in Christ?” Graham replied, “I’m going to leave that to the Lord. He’ll decide that” (Los Angeles Herald Examiner, July 22, 1985). While this answer might appear reasonable to those who do not know the Bible, in reality it is a great compromise of the truth. God has already decided what will happen to those who die outside of faith in Jesus Christ. The book of Ephesians describes the condition of such as “children of wrath” (Ephesians 2:3) and “having no hope, and without God in the world” (Ephesians 2:12). That is why Christ must be preached. Men without a saving knowledge of Christ are condemned already
(John 3:18). There is no mystery or question about this matter, because the Bible has plainly spoken.
In 1993, Graham repeated this philosophy in an interview with David Frost. “And I think there is that hunger for God and people are living as best they know how according to the light that they have. Well, I think they’re in a separate category than people like Hitler and people who have just defied God, and shaken their fists at God. … I would say that God, being a God of mercy, we have to rest it right there, and say that God is a God of mercy and love, and how it happens, we don’t know” (The Charlotte Observer, Feb. 16, 1993).
In his interview with Robert Schuller in May 1997, Graham again said that he believes people in other religions can be saved without consciously believing in Jesus Christ.
SCHULLER: Tell me, what do you think is the future of Christianity?
GRAHAM: Well, Christianity and being a true believer--you know, I think there's the Body of Christ. This comes from all the Christian groups around the world, outside the Christian groups. I think everybody that loves Christ, or knows Christ, whether they're conscious of it or not, they're members of the Body of Christ. And I don't think that we're going to see a great sweeping revival, that will turn the whole world to Christ at any time. I think James answered that, the Apostle James in the first council in Jerusalem, when he said that God's purpose for this age is to call out a people for His name. And that's what God is doing today, He's calling people out of the world for His name, WHETHER THEY COME FROM THE MUSLIM WORLD, OR THE BUDDHIST WORLD, OR THE CHRISTIAN WORLD OR THE NON-BELIEVING WORLD, THEY ARE MEMBERS OF THE BODY OF CHRIST BECAUSE THEY'VE BEEN CALLED BY GOD. THEY MAY NOT EVEN KNOW THE NAME OF JESUS but they know in their hearts that they need something that they don't have, and they turn to the only light that they have, and I think that they are saved, and that they're going to be with us in heaven.
SCHULLER: What, what I hear you saying that it's possible for Jesus Christ to come into human hearts and soul and life, even if they've been born in darkness and have never had exposure to the Bible. Is that a correct interpretation of what you're saying?
GRAHAM: Yes, it is, because I believe that. I've met people in various parts of the world in tribal situations, that THEY HAVE NEVER SEEN A BIBLE OR HEARD ABOUT A BIBLE, AND NEVER HEARD OF JESUS, BUT THEY'VE BELIEVED IN THEIR HEARTS THAT THERE WAS A GOD, and they've tried to live a life that was quite apart from the surrounding community in which they lived.
SCHULLER: [trips over his tongue for a moment, his face beaming, then says] I I'm so thrilled to hear you say this. There's a wideness in God's mercy.
GRAHAM: There is. There definitely is (Television interview of Billy Graham by Robert Schuller, broadcast in southern California on Saturday, May 31, 1997).
BILLY GRAHAM THINKS A MIRACLE HAPPENS IN INFANT BAPTISM
In a 1961 interview with the Lutheran Standard of the liberal American Lutheran Church, Graham testified that all of his children except the youngest were baptized as infants (Graham grew up as a Presbyterian and his wife is still Presbyterian). Graham then made the following amazing statement:
“I have some difficulty in accepting the indiscriminate baptism of infants without a careful regard as to whether the parents have any intention of fulfilling the promise they make. But I do believe that something happens at the baptism of an infant, particularly if the parents are Christians and teach their children Christian Truths from childhood. We cannot fully understand the miracles of God, but I believe that a miracle can happen in these children so that they are regenerated, that is, made Christian, through infant baptism. If you want to call that baptismal regeneration, that’s all right with me” (Graham, interview with Wilfred Bockelman, associate editor of the Lutheran Standard, American Lutheran Church, Lutheran Standard, October 10, 1961).
BILLY GRAHAM DOES NOT BELIEVE HELL IS A PLACE OF LITERAL FIERY TORMENT
Billy Graham was questioning the literal fire of hell as far back as 1951. During his crusade in Greensboro, North Carolina, from Oct. 14 to Nov. 18, 1951, Graham made the following statement:
“I know that God has a fire which burns but does not consume; one example is the fire of the burning bush which Moses saw. I know also, however, that in many places throughout the Bible, the term ‘fire’ is used figuratively to connote great punishment or suffering. The Bible speaks of fire set by the tongue” (Graham, cited by Margaret Moffett Banks, “Crusader: Graham saved souls, made headlines,” News & Record, Greensboro, North Carolina, March 15, 1999).
The author of this secular newspaper article noted that Graham “stopped short of describing a literal Hell, where tormented souls burn for eternity.”
The Orlando (Florida) Sentinel for April 10, 1983, asked Billy Graham: “Surveys tell us that 85% of Americans believe in heaven, but only 65% believe in hell. Why do you think so many Americans don’t accept the concept of hell?” He replied: “I think that hell essentially is separation from God forever. And that is the worst hell that I can think of. But I think people have a hard time believing God is going to allow people to burn in literal fire forever. I think the fire that is mentioned in the Bible is a burning thirst for God that can never be quenched.”
In his 1983 “Affirmations” for evangelists, Graham said the fire of hell could be symbolic:
“Jesus used three words to describe hell. ... The third word that He used is ‘fire.’ Jesus used this symbol over and over. This could be literal fire, as many believe. Or IT COULD BE SYMBOLIC. ... I’ve often thought that this fire could possibly be a burning thirst for God that is never quenched” (A Biblical Standard for Evangelists, Billy Graham, A commentary on the 15 Affirmations made by participants at the International Conference for Itinerant Evangelists in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, July, 1983, Worldwide Publications, Minneapolis, Minnesota, pages 45-47).
In Time magazine, November 15, 1993, Graham said: “The only thing I could say for sure is that hell means separation from God. We are separated from his light, from his fellowship. That is going to be hell. When it comes to a literal fire, I don’t preach it because I’m not sure about it. When the Scripture uses fire concerning hell, that is possibly an illustration of how terrible it’s going to be—not fire but something worse, a thirst for God that cannot be quenched.”
BILLY GRAHAM PRAISES CHRIST-DENYING MODERNISTS
Graham’s close affiliation with unbelieving false teachers has been widely documented for 40 years. There were 120 Modernists on his New York Crusade committee in 1957. One of those was HENRY VAN DUSEN, president of the extremely liberal Union Theological Seminary. Van Dusen denied Christ’s virgin birth. In his book Liberal Theology, he stated that Jesus is not God. Van Dusen and his wife later committed suicide together.
Another Modernist exalted by Graham during the 1957 New York Crusade was JOHN SUTHERLAND BONNELL, pastor of Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church. Bonnell was on the executive committee and was honored by Graham on the platform during the meetings. Bonnell had also participated in Graham’s Scotland crusade in 1955. Graham mentions Bonnell twice in a strictly positive manner in his 1997 biography, Just As I Am. In an article in Look magazine (March 23, 1954) Bonnell had stated that he and most other Presbyterian ministers did not believe in the virgin birth or bodily resurrection of Christ, the inspiration of Scripture, a real heaven and hell, etc. This unbelieving wolf in sheep’s clothing said that he and most other Presbyterians “do not conceive of heaven as a place with gates of pearl and streets of gold. Nor do they think of hell as a place where the souls of condemned are punished in fire and brimstone.”
In his 1959 San Francisco Crusade, Graham honored the notorious liberal BISHOP JAMES A. PIKE by having him lead in prayer. Graham had attended Pike’s consecration at San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral on May 15, 1958 (William Stringfellow and Anthony Towne, The Death and Life of Bishop Pike, p. 306). Pike would also have been involved in Graham’s 1957 New York Crusade, as he was the dean of the extremely modernistic Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York from 1952 to 1958. Yet Pike was a rank, unbelieving Modernist, a drunkard, an adulterer. He denied the Trinity and refused to state the traditional benediction, “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, Amen!” He abbreviated this to “In the name of God, Amen!” Three times Pike was brought up on heresy charges in the Episcopal Church. In an article in Look magazine Pike stated that he did not believe the fundamentals of the faith. In a pastoral letter that was to be read in all the Episcopal Churches of his diocese, Pike stated that “religious myth is one of the avenues of faith and has an important place in the communication of the Gospel.” He spoke of the “myth of the Garden of Eden.” He said, “The virgin birth... is a myth which churchmen should be free to accept or reject.” In an article in Christian Century, Dec. 21, 1960, Pike declared that he no longer believed the doctrines stated in the Apostles’ Creed. The same month that article appeared Graham again joined Pike at his Grace Cathedral for a Christian Men’s Assembly sponsored by the National Council of Churches. Three times Pike was picked up by San Francisco police while he was wandering around in a drunken, confused state late at night. He spent four years in intensive psychoanalysis. Pike was twice divorced, thrice married, and had at least three mistresses. One of his mistresses committed suicide; one of his daughters attempted suicide. His eldest son committed suicide in 1966 at age 20 (associated with his homosexuality), and Pike got deeply involved in the occult in an attempt to communicate with the deceased. Three years later Pike died from a 70-foot fall in a remote canyon in the Israeli desert near the Dead Sea. His maggot infested body was found five days later. The 56-year-old theologian got lost in the desert while on an extended honeymoon with his 31-year-old third wife (and long time mistress). A biography about Pike noted that “never before in the history of the Episcopal Church had a Solemn Requiem Mass been offered for a bishop in the presence of three surviving wives” (The Death and Life of Bishop Pike, p. 202).
In Graham’s 1963 Los Angeles Crusade, Methodist Bishop GERALD KENNEDY was chairman of the crusade committee. On August 21, 1963, Graham praised Kennedy as “one of the ten greatest Christian preachers in America.” Yet, Kennedy has denied just about every one of the fundamentals of the Christian faith. In his book God’s Good News, Kennedy said, “I believe the testimony of the New Testament taken as a whole is against the doctrine of the deity of Christ” (p. 125). Kennedy’s printed endorsement is found on the jacket of NELS FERRE’S book, The Sun and the Umbrella. In this book Ferre denied practically every doctrine of the Word of God. He said, “Jesus never was nor became God.” He calls the doctrine of Christ’s pre-existence “the grand myth which at its heart is idolatry.” In Ferre’s book The Christian Understanding of God, he said, “We have no way of knowing, even, that Jesus was sinless.” He denies the virgin birth of Christ and replaces it with his blasphemous theory that Jesus may have been the son of a German soldier. Yet, Graham’s campaign chairman, Gerald Kennedy, endorsed Ferre and his blasphemies.
In Los Angeles Graham also praised E. STANLEY JONES, liberal missionary to India. Jones denied the virgin birth, the Trinity, the infallible inspiration of Holy Scripture, and many other doctrines of the faith.
At a National Council of Churches meeting in 1966, Graham praised BISHOP LESLIE NEWBIGEN of South India. Newbigen was a universalist and a syncretist who believed that there is salvation in non-Christian religions. In his book The Open Secret, Newbigen claimed that the church is not “the exclusive possessor of salvation.”
In 1974, Graham featured MALCOLM MUGGERIDGE at the Congress on World Evangelization, yet Muggeridge disbelieved the Bible and New Testament Christianity. In his book Jesus Rediscovered, Muggeridge stated that it is “beyond credibility” to imagine that God had a virgin-born son who died and rose from the dead.
In his biography, Graham praises KARL BARTH as “the great theologian” and states: “In spite of our theological differences, we remained good friends” (Graham, Just As I Am, p. 694). Graham does not warn his readers that Barth denied the New Testament faith. He refused to believe the virgin birth. He rejected the Bible as the infallible Word of God. Barth was also a wicked adulterer who kept a mistress in his house in the very presence of his wife, Nelly (Eberhard Busch, Karl Barth: His Life from Letters and Autobiographical Texts, translated by John Bowden, pp. 158,164,185-86).
Another of the many false teachers praised in Graham’s biography is MICHAEL RAMSEY, former Archbishop of Canterbury. Graham calls him “a giant of a man” and says, “We were friends for many years” (Just As I Am, p. 694). Graham fails to warn his readers that Ramsey was an unbeliever who denied the virgin birth of Jesus Christ. In the London Daily Mail for Feb. 10, 1961, Ramsey said: “Heaven is not a place for Christians only. I expect to see many present day atheists there.” In 1966, Ramsey had an audience with Pope Paul VI at the Vatican. He addressed the Pope as “Your holiness” and expressed his desire for closer unity with Rome. As Ramsey and the other Anglican clergy were departing they bowed and kissed the Pope’s ring. Speaking about this papal visit a year later, Ramsey testified that he and the Pope walked arm and arm out in St. Peter’s Basilica and dedicated themselves to the task of unifying “all Christendom and all the churches of all the world into one church” (Ramsey, cited by M.L. Moser, Ecumenicalism Under the Spotlight, pp. 22-23). In 1972, while preaching at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Manhatten, Ramsey said: “I can foresee the day when all Christians might accept the Pope as the presiding Bishop.”
Graham’s attitude toward modernists is evident in his pleasant relationship with the WORLD COUNCIL OF CHURCHES. He has attended all but two of the WCC’s General Assemblies. Consider the following statements taken from the telegram sent in 1983 by Graham to PHILIP POTTER, General Secretary of the World Council of Churches. Dr. Graham did not appear at the WCC Sixth Assembly in 1983 because of prior engagements: “Dear Philip: Your gracious and generous invitation to speak twice in Vancouver was deeply appreciated. ... I have tried to juggle my schedule but it is just too heavy at this late date for me to make the drastic changes that would be necessary for me to be in Vancouver. This will be only the second general assembly of the WCC that I have had to miss. I will certainly miss seeing you and many other old friends and fellowshipping with those from all over the world...” (Foundation, Vol. IV, Issue IV, Los Osos, Calif.: Fundamental Evangelistic Association, 1983). We should note here that Philip Potter is an apostate Christian leader. He does not believe that those in non-Christian religions are lost, and he advocates violent communist movements!
These are merely a few of the hundreds of examples that could be given of Graham’s habit of yoking together with and honoring wicked, Bible-denying modernists.
BILLY GRAHAM HAS PROMOTED PRACTICALLY EVERY PERVERTED BIBLE VERSION TO APPEAR IN THE LAST FOUR DECADES
In 1952 Billy Graham accepted a copy of the modernistic Revised Standard Version and told a crowd of 20,000 people: “These scholars have probably given us the most nearly perfect translation in English. While there may be room for disagreement in certain areas of the translation, yet this new version should supplement the King James Version and make Bible reading a habit throughout America” (Graham, cited by Perry Rockwood, God’s Inspired Preserved Bible, Halifax, N.S.: People’s Gospel Hour, nd., p. 15).
Graham’s endorsement of the Revised Standard Version foreshadowed Evangelicalism’s capitulation to the endless stream of modern versions. Graham has endorsed practically every new version to appear on the scene, no matter how flippant and unfaithful.
In his autobiography, modernist Bible paraphraser J.B. Phillips (1906-1982) stated that Billy Graham spoke highly of his work as early as 1952: “I think it was in 1952 that I received a visit from Dr. Billy Graham with his charming and intelligent wife. ‘I want to thank you, Dr. Phillips,’ he began, ‘for Letters to Young Churches’“ (J.B. Phillips, The Price of Success, Wheaton: Harold Shaw Pub., 1984, p. 116).
Graham almost single-handedly rescued the Living Bible from oblivion. “The Living Bible might be called ‘The Billy Graham Bible,’ for it was he who made it the success that it is. According to Time magazine, July 24, 1972, Billy Graham ordered 50,000 copies of the Epistles, and a short time later ordered some 450,000 more, and still later ordered 600,000 special paperback versions for his autumn television crusade in 1972. From that time on, orders began to pour in” (M.L. Moser, Jr., The Case Against the Living Bible, Little Rock: Challenge Press, p. 9). That was only the beginning of Graham’s love affair with the Living Bible. At Amsterdam ‘86, Graham allowed Living Bibles International to distribute free copies of the Living Bible in 40 different languages to the 8,000 evangelists in attendance (Light of Life, Bombay, India, Sept. 1986, p. 23). Graham distributed 10,000 copies of the Living Bible to people who attended his Mission England Crusade (Australian Beacon, No. 241, Aug. 1986). In 1987, Graham appeared in television ads for The Book, a condensed version of the Living Bible. He said it “reads like a novel.” In an ad that appeared in a 1991 issue of Charisma magazine, Graham said: “I read The Living Bible because in this book I have read the age-abiding truths of the scriptures with renewed interest and inspiration. The Living Bible communicates the message of Christ to our generation” (Charisma, March 1991, p. 98).
Billy Graham is also one of the men who first helped make the perverted Good News for Modern Man (Today’s English Version) popular by distributing it through his Association. Graham “called it an excellent translation over nationwide television from his campaign in Anaheim, California.” It was then distributed by the Grason Company of Minneapolis, the distributors of Billy Graham materials (M.L. Moser, Jr., The Devil’s Masterpiece, Little Rock: Challenge Press, 1970, p. 80). The Good News for Modern Man replaces the word “blood” with “death” in speaking of the atonement of Jesus Christ, and corrupted practically every passage dealing with Christ’s deity. The translator of the Good News for Modern Man, Robert Bratcher, does not believe that Jesus Christ is God.
GRAHAM SAYS THE VIRGIN BIRTH NOT A NECESSARY PART OF CHRISTIAN FAITH
In an interview with a United Church of Canada publication in 1966, Graham gave the following reply to a question about the virgin birth of Christ:
Q. Do you think a literal belief in the Virgin birth--not just as a symbol of the incarnation or of Christ’s divinity--as an historic event is necessary for personal salvation?
A. While I most certainly believe that Jesus Christ was born of a virgin, I do not find anywhere in the New Testament that this particular belief is necessary for personal salvation (“Billy Graham Answers 26 Provocative Questions,” United Church of Observer, July 1, 1966).
In his zeal to appease the apostates in the United Church of Christ (its current moderator, Bill Phipps, denies that Jesus Christ is God), Graham tells an absolute lie. How would it be possible for a saved person to deny the virgin birth of Jesus Christ? If Jesus Christ were not virgin born, he was a sinner; and if he were a sinner, he could not have died for our sins. Further, if Christ were a sinner and if He were not virgin born, He was a liar for making such claims and the Bible that records those claims is a blatant and wicked lie, and the Bible-believing Christian is a deceived and foolish person whose faith has no authoritative foundation. Therefore, apart from the virgin birth there is no Gospel and no Salvation and no authoritative Bible. Billy Graham is dead wrong. The virgin birth of Christ is “fatal” doctrine, meaning it is crucial for salvation. The entire Gospel stands or falls on the virgin birth.
GRAHAM SAYS THEISTIC EVOLUTION IS POSSIBLE
Graham said in 1966, “How you believe doesn’t affect the doctrine. Either at a certain moment in evolution God breathed into one particular ape-man who was Adam, or God could have taken a handful of dust and blowed and created a man just like that” (“Cooperative Evangelism at Harringay,” United Church Observer, July 1966).
GRAHAM REFUSES TO DEFEND THE BIBLE AS THE INERRANT WORD OF GOD
Newsweek magazine, April 26, 1982, examined the debate on the issue of biblical infallibility. The article noted that Billy Graham is not on the side of inerrancy. “Billy Graham, for one, clearly is not. ‘I believe the Bible is the inspired, authoritative word of God,’ Graham says, ‘but I don’t use the word ‘inerrant’ because it’s become a brittle divisive word.’” Graham avoids controversy at any cost. He knows that Modernists and unbelieving Evangelicals are willing to call the Bible “authoritative and inspired” even while denying that it is the infallible and inerrant Word of God. Graham aligns himself with this unbelieving camp. If the Bible is not the inerrant Word of God, who can dogmatically determine which part is and which part is not inerrant! If the Bible is not inerrant, it is not authoritative.
GRAHAM AGREES WITH HERETIC ROBERT SCHULLER’S FALSE DEFINITIONS OF THE GOSPEL
Graham spoke at Robert Schuller’s Crystal Cathedral in 1985, and the two men came up with a joint definition of “born again” as “a decision to stop carrying your own luggage” (Paul Harvey’s report, July 15, 1985). Schuller is false teacher who preaches a false gospel. He uses biblical terms but redefines them with unbiblical means. He defines born again as “to be changed from a negative to a positive self-image--from inferiority to self-esteem, from fear to love, from doubt to trust” (Schuller, Self-Esteem: The New Reformation, p. 68). In an article in Christianity Today, October 5, 1984, Schuller said, “I don’t think anything has been done in the name of Christ and under the banner of Christianity that has proven more destructive to human personality and, hence, counterproductive to the evangelism enterprise than the often crude, uncouth, and unchristian strategy of attempting to make people aware of their lost and sinful condition.” In spite of Schuller’s unbelief and false gospel, Graham has repeatedly honored him. In 1983, Schuller sat in the front row of distinguished guests invited to honor Graham’s 65th birthday. In 1986, Schuller was invited by Graham to speak at the International Conference for Itinerant Evangelists in Amsterdam. Schuller was featured on the platform of Graham’s Atlanta Crusade in 1994.
GRAHAM SAYS THEOLOGY NO LONGER MEANS ANYTHING TO HIM
As the year 1988 closed, Graham told U.S. News & World Report that theology no longer meant anything to him: “World travel and getting to know clergy of all denominations has helped mold me into an ecumenical being. We’re separated by theology and, in some instances, culture and race, but all that means nothing to me any more” (U.S. News & World Report, Dec. 19, 1988).
GRAHAM DOES NOT EMPHASIZE SALVATION THROUGH THE BLOOD OF CHRIST
A letter from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association in 1968 that I have in my files made the following amazing statement: “Mr. Graham believes that we are saved through the blood of Christ, however, this aspect of Christian doctrine he does not emphasize in his messages. This is the duty and prerogative of the pastors” (Rev. W.H. Martindale, Spiritual Counselor, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, letter, Feb. 29, 1968).
More links to Billy Graham:
"Billy Graham and Rome"
"When Did Graham's Compromise Begin?"
"Graham Was Warned Many Times"
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