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Featured Billy Graham's Gospel compared with the Gospel of Grace

Discussion in 'Christian Theology Forum' started by Dave L, Mar 3, 2019.

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  1. Dave L

    Dave L Guest

    I worked in sales for many years. And at one time wrote a company manual giving guidelines on how to sell. Also analyzing how to close a sale and why people buy or do not buy the product.

    Many think Christ is available on the same terms. That they must show the benefits for accepting Jesus, evoke an emotional bond, and then close the sale by asking the person to make their decision. This would also be the Billy Graham style of sales technique, asking for decisions from millions for Christ. And purely a legal transaction.

    But this is not how salvation works. When people decide to buy a car or to accept Christ, it is an act of the flesh based on an emotional response to the sales pitch.

    But is Christ available on these terms? According to scripture, salvation is a miracle wrought by God in the heart that transforms the person from being an unbeliever into a believer. And this takes place as they hear the gospel preached.

    Within the simple Gospel is a spiritual force that raises people from the dead. First spiritually. And then in the resurrection and rapture on the last day, where we receive the resurrection of our bodies. Peter says we; “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.” (1 Peter 1:23) (KJV 1900)

    So it isn’t about coaxing the flesh to buy the product as in sales. It is speaking the words of Christ that are Spirit and life into people’s hearts. The transformation takes place many times right as we speak, and the result is a person who believes the gospel.

    In fact the fewer of our own words we say, and the less of an emotional response we evoke, the better. And the more we say of God’s words the better. The transforming power is in the word of God that regenerates the human heart as we speak.

    In the New Testament, they always followed the message telling believers to receive baptism and repent. And only those who believed by grace would believe enough to follow through.
     
  2. Deborah_

    Deborah_ Well-Known Member

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    Point taken - but nevertheless, the Holy Spirit did work through Billy Graham's preaching to give life to the dead. Not all his 'converts' were merely 'buying his product' on the basis of an emotional reaction. There were many who became genuine believers. I know some of them.
     
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  3. Dave L

    Dave L Guest

    Thanks for considering this. I agree with you. But their faith is in their decision and not in Christ where it belongs.
     
  4. Dave L

    Dave L Guest

    I should follow up saying Billy no doubt had many genuine converts. Jesus says "whoever believes has eternal life". So those who believed enough to make a decision were already saved when they made their decision. Or they would not have "gone forward" and decided to "close the deal". But the down side is that their faith is in their decision, just as many trust in their baptism to save them, and not directly in Christ the savior.
     
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  5. Deborah_

    Deborah_ Well-Known Member

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    That a is a totally unwarranted assumption. If their faith were in their decision only, they wouldn't be saved.
     
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  6. Dave L

    Dave L Guest

    People are saved in the New Birth, not according to how much scripture they know.
     
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  7. Preacher4Truth

    Preacher4Truth Well-Known Member

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    Exactly, and perfectly biblical, John 1:12-13. Their faith and "decision" are evidence of conversion, not the cause; 1 Peter 1:3.
     
  8. Deborah_

    Deborah_ Well-Known Member

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    Agreed. I knew hardly any Scripture when I became a Christian. Not sure what this has to do with "making decisions" at evangelistic meetings, though.
     
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  9. Episkopos

    Episkopos Well-Known Member

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    Mr. Graham was a simple man with a simple faith. But one cannot but see that he also had an anointing to reach people in that very basic way. It isn't in the words themselves but what was behind the words....that's where the real message lay. Some people were indeed touched by God.....weeping over their sins. And some were just going along for the ride.

    That's the thing about people. Nobody is 100% something or another thing. We are all a composite of things. God uses us if we have enough focus and willingness. But he uses imperfect vessels.
     
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  10. Dave L

    Dave L Guest

    Decisions replace baptism in the order of events for new converts. In the NT it is the announcement whoever believes has eternal life. That followed by baptism and repentance.
     
  11. Earburner

    Earburner Active Member

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    Billy didn't just invite them to accept Christ as their Savior, he also explained that there were counselors available for each who came forward, to instruct/guide them about repentance and their need to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit of God.
    BTW, just the mere fact that one recognizes their need for Christ, and then acts on it through faith, is the repentance of God.
     
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  12. "ByGrace"

    "ByGrace" Well-Known Member

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    I went to a Billy Graham meeting.
    It all had nothing to do with Mr Graham and everything to do with GOD.
    Billy Graham gave his life 100% to God.
    He was a willing “Baalam’s Ass” for God.
    He was a man of prayer. He prayed , and God did the rest.

    The anointing was heavy upon the meetings , and the Holy Spirit was ‘doing His thing’, long before Billy Graham even opened his mouth to speak !!
     
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  13. Episkopos

    Episkopos Well-Known Member

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    Amen. We have to get away from the idea of seeing everything from a carnal or fleshly viewpoint. We need to greet the Christ IN others. We are to no longer estimate things according to the flesh. God uses people. If you resist His servant...you resist God.

    Even Gamaliel (a non-believer) understood that much.
     
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  14. prism

    prism Blood-Soaked

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    Little nifty formulas don't work either...

    Acts 17:1-3 (KJV) Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews: And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures, Opening and alleging, that Christ must needs have suffered, and risen again from the dead; and that this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ.

    I wouldn't think three Sabbaths of reasoning from the Scriptures were 'few words'.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2019
  15. Dave L

    Dave L Guest

    Paul reasoned from the scriptures. Not winging it like so many do today. The words are Spirit and life through which God creates new life in the hearers.
     
  16. Taken

    Taken Well-Known Member

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    Agree and Disagree.

    Agree. Human salesmen devise sales-pitches with all the bells and whistles of their product to capture an others attention.

    Disagree. The Lord God does not also reveal all the good and blessings He has to offer to capture an others attention.

    A Human salesman, tries to Deflect from anything Negative about his "product".
    A Human salesman, required to reveal any Negativities does so within a stack of papers in small print.

    The Word of God Plainly informs all others willing to Hear or Read; of the Blessings AND Negative Expectations for ANY man who Accepts or Rejects thee Lord Gods OFFER...

    Thee Lord God is not SELLING anything.
    He makes an OFFER of a GIFT, and an OFFER to PAY the Price for a man to RECEIVE the GIFT.

    Big Difference!


    Glory to God,
    Taken
     
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  17. Dave L

    Dave L Guest

    But bribing people into the faith is a wrong approach.
     
  18. Taken

    Taken Well-Known Member

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    Who said anything about BRIBING?

    Oh, right...that was you.

    Bribing is trying to get someone to lean in anothers favor through dishonest means.

    Do you believe the Lord God BRIBES men through Dishonest means? I don't.

    I believe thee Lord God OFFERS men through Honest forthright means.

    Humans sales-men...eh...a different story.
    (Human sales-men attempt to entice others to buy what the other does not need nor can afford to pay for)
     
  19. Dave L

    Dave L Guest

    Salvation happens before the will can respond. Soliciting the will to act with bribes only creates false believers.
     
  20. Taken

    Taken Well-Known Member

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    Well, by your own admission, you were involved with writing a HOW TO manuel for sales-men to BRIBE men.

    I disagree that is thee Lord Gods method.
     
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