A few years ago, I was too sick to preach on Sunday. It is the only time in 20 years of preaching that I have had to miss a Sunday morning sermon due to illness.
I wasn’t too sick to watch television, so I heard a few sermons that day. The one I remember best was an old recording of Billy Graham in his prime. The beloved evangelist clearly, boldly and passionately laid out the straight-forward gospel that salvation comes only through Jesus Christ. This is the message that Graham has so consistently proclaimed for decades, and he is one of the most respected men in America.
Fast forward a few decades. Mr. Graham, now in his 90s, is enjoying retirement. His son, Franklin, has made his mark as a preacher also. However, Franklin Graham is not nearly as beloved as his father, even though he preaches the same gospel message—that salvation comes only through Jesus Christ.
As a matter of fact, Franklin Graham has been reviled by many for staying faithful to the truth. He has been called a homophobe and an intolerant bigot who hates Muslims.
Why do we see such different reactions to the same message? It’s because the religious views of our nation have changed drastically over the past few decades. Tolerance now trumps truth. Billy Graham is no longer the greatest individual spiritual influence in our nation. Perhaps that distinction now goes to Oprah (a scary thought)!
As our culture changes its view on religion, we have a choice to make. We can change along with it. Or we can determine to cling to the truth with all of our might.
Let’s cling to the truth!
“Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.”—Acts 4:12.