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Franklin Graham on CNN election night:
“If we are allowed to go down this road in the path that this president wants us to go down, I think it will be to our peril and to the destruction of this nation.”
Do you agree, or do you think this is an overstatement? Regardless of the election results, is America’s ‘peril and destruction’ imminent? Your thoughts? More here… Todd
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Franklin Graham thinks it may be.  Here’s what he told Charisma News: In just a few days, we in the United States have the privilege of electing the people who will serve in office for the next several years. Since we believe this is one of the most important elections in our lifetime, my father and I have taken a strong stand in the past few months to encourage voters to support candidates on the national, state, and local levels who embrace biblical values. My father watches the news every day, and he is deeply concerned about the enormous moral issues facing our country. That’s why your vote on Nov. 6 is so critical. This is a crucial hour for our nation. Above all, this is a time for deep, intercessory prayer on behalf of our great country, which is in grave danger unless we repent of our sins and turn back to the God of our fathers. The Bible says, “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way” (1 Tim. 2:1–2). When America’s leaders actively promote and legislate immorality, restrict the religious freedoms that our country was founded on, and are openly hostile to men and women of faith, then I believe we are ripe for God’s judgment. So pray and then vote on Nov. 6, asking God for His mercy and grace upon our land. There’s still time to turn from our wicked ways so that He might spare us from His wrath against sin… This could be America’s last call to repentance and faith in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, who is coming again one day very soon to save His own and to judge those who don’t know and worship Him. You can read more here. // Could this not have been written in 2008, 2004, or 1964? Is America MORE ripe for judgment in 2012 than during the civil rights turmoil, or when our country condoned slavery, or during the ‘free sex’ sixties? Will people really vote for their candidate because of threats of impending judgment, or is this a rallying cry for a very conservative evangelical base that, up until now, has somewhat listened to Franklin? What do YOU think? Todd
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Controversy
In this piece by Tim Funk, Funk makes a case for Franklin Graham being much more like Jerry Falwell than his father.  What do you think? As he gives sound bites condemning Islam, promoting top Republicans and raising questions about President Obama’s Christianity, North Carolina’s Franklin Graham is sounding less these days like the next Billy Graham and more like the new Jerry Falwell. In the younger Graham’s controversial comments – offered recently and over the years on a host of TV news shows – religion scholars, political historians and even some of Graham’s fellow evangelical Christians say they hear strident echoes of the combative Falwell. Throughout the 1980s, as head of the Moral Majority, Falwell lambasted liberals, forged alliances with the GOP and elevated issues such as abortion, homosexuality and public prayer. The 58-year-old Graham, who came of age in a more religiously pluralistic America than the one that made his father famous, has spoken out against Islam in a way that American Muslims say encourages prejudice – and worse – against them. And though Billy Graham lost some credibility for promoting Richard Nixon during a time of American discord, his son readily mixes theological commentary with doses of political punditry. via Franklin Graham: The next Jerry Falwell? – Local – TheSunNews.com.
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Controversy
OK… I want your input on this.  Franklin Graham has, of course, been in the spotlight recently over the whole National Day of Prayer dis-invitation thing.  Last week, on the eve of the National Day of Prayer, Graham said this in a webcase from the offices of the Family Research Council:

“I think its coming to this country where we (will) have the freedom to preach inside a church wall, but we will lose the freedom to do it outside. That day will probably come – maybe in my lifetime.”

I want to know what you think of this quote. Do you agree or disagree? Is it probably truth or purely hype? Franklin Graham continues:

“(In the United States) we see everyday our rights being eroded. Just a little at a time, but its happening. Everyday. So let’s preach while we can. Let’s stand up and holler ‘Jesus Christ! King of Kings, Lord of Lords!’to the top of our voice… The secularists are going to get ticked off, the news media’s going to hate it. I don’t know, maybe the people in the White House are going to be mad. But you know what, I don’t care. Because God has called us to take the Gospel — His Gospel, the power of God and His Salvation — unto the ends of the Earth.”

Again… agree or disagree? My take:  I don’t know.  In some ways, I think it is the proverbial militant preacher that is preaching ‘Jesus Christ! King of Kings, Lord of Lords’ at the top of their voice that somehow is causing much of the turmoil and ‘rights reduction’ in America.  Don’t get me wrong… America was based on religious freedom, and we need to protect our right to proclaim the gospel without government intervention; but purposefully ticking off the people who are the ones who are in power over making the rules doesn’t make sense to me either. We can holler Jesus’ name all day long at those we don’t agree with; and at people who don’t know Jesus.  They’ll just think we’re nuts.  (And they should… they don’t know Jesus!)  And if they think we’re nuts, they probably WILL move to keep us quiet.  After all, that’s what we want to do with them, right? What’s the answer?  Let the church be the church.  Like it was in Nashville last week.  The more we as churches (and individuals) can be the hands and feet of Jesus rather than trying to be the mouth of Jesus, the better off we are.  Out of the opportunities that God gives us every day being the hands and feet, lives will be changed, and instead of having to ‘holler’ Jesus’ name; we can whisper it.  And my guess is that we’ll be a lot more effective. Am I all wet?  It’s Monday.  Early.  And I haven’t had my coffee yet.  (But that’s no excuse… I hate coffee). What do YOU think?  Leave a comment below… Todd (You can read more on Franklin Graham’s comments here)
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Leadership
I started doing something new this year.  Beginning January 1, I decided that I was going to capture quotes that I find interesting throughout this year.  The quotes could be motivational.  They could be something that made me think.  They could be just provocative statements that would cause me to ponder.  Regardless… I decided that I would write all these down. It’s been a fun experience.  And I’m finding some great things.  Below are some that I think you might enjoy.  I’m not saying that I even agree with all of these… but they are great to read and ‘chew on’. See what you think: “The church that is content with not growing is saying to the rest of the world “You can go to hell” –Rick Warren “It’s much easier to act like a Christian than to react like one. Anyone can put on an act. But your reactions reveal what is really in your heart.” –Mark Batterson “I do not want to be guilty of leading a church passionate about reaching the saved, but fanatics reaching the lost. I have noticed, that every Christian wants to see the lost saved, but not every Christian wants their church to cater to the lost.” –Shannon O’Dell “I can’t Christianize this culture. The god of this world is Satan – this is his culture. He is the god of this age. I’m to preach the gospel. …. God is calling a people for Himself. I don’t know whom He’s calling, I just have to be faithful and preach.” –Franklin Graham “Being a leader does not mean that we will never be in situations that make us shake in our shoes; in fact, it means quite the opposite. When a leader allows the fear of a circumstance to trump the fear of God in his life…he ceases to lead.” –Perry Noble “A leader is a person who is always on the lookout for other potential leaders to discover, develop, and deploy. But if we are not careful, all our energy can leak out to passion stealers, stranding us on a sandbar of mediocrity and ineffectiveness.” –Dave Kraft “After wrestling with this for years, I’m slowly coming to the conclusion that a church building may not be the best location for church employees to do their work.” –Erik Ullestad “Have we created a theological ideology that eliminates any discomfort and marginalizes any element that would cause us pain or even death?” –Brady Boyd “Is the seductive, deceptive lure of some sin such as anger, bitterness, unforgiveness, and sexual immorality, creeping into your heart? Is there anyone you’ve been withholding forgiveness from? Do you secretly celebrate the failures of people around you? Have any secrets that you’re working hard to keep from some of your closest friends?” –Pete Wilson “In my experience, once it’s clear you’re willing (not just willing, but itching, moving, and yes, implementing) without them, things start to happen. People are rarely willing to step up and stop you, and often just waiting to follow someone crazy enough to actually do something.” –Seth Godin Maybe as the year goes on, I’ll share more.  Have a favorite ministry or motivational quote that you’d like to share with me?  Pop me an email at trhoades@mondaymorninginsight.com. Have a great 2010! Todd
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