This week the world mourned the loss of perhaps one of the most well-known and popular evangelists of the 20th century, Billy Graham. Beginning his ministry crusades in 1947, even today, you certainly wouldn’t struggle to find someone who attended one of his advents or knows of someone who did. The Lord used this man mightily for the furtherance of His Kingdom and many people came to true saving faith through his gospel ministry. But at a time like this, I would like us to contemplate 2 important thoughts.
1. We must remember that it was not the man Billy Graham who saved but rather the Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal Saviour. Yes, Graham had a powerful message and a God-given gift for presenting it, but ultimately salvation comes from the Lord as all will sing one day (Rev 7:10) It is only as God wills from before the foundation of the earth that people will come to Him in true repentance.
2. One of Graham’s favourite verses that he used at almost all of his events was Romans 10:13, for “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Whilst this verse is great for evangelism, we must remember that true saving faith is not merely a moment of verbal or mental acknowledgement to Christ’s deity. James 2:19 tells us that even the demons believe that Christ is the Son of God. What Paul is referencing here in Rom 10:13 is the ‘calling on the name of the Lord’ is to depict a lifestyle of faith, and not merely a fleeting moment of acknowledgment of who Christ is.
So as we remember the man Billy Graham this morning, let us even more so be taken up in awe of the God who truly saves us. May our lives constantly reflect the saving grace that we have been freely given.
Contributed by Alex Townsend