Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Franklin Graham To Pastors: "God Hates Cowards"
Franklin Graham told a large gathering of pastors at the Watchman On The Wall National Briefing last Thursday to "address controversial issues from the pulpit."
He told the pastors, "God hates cowards."
His comments were based on Revelation 21:8 where God lists eight groups of people who will be "in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death."
Alan Robertson, one of the sons of "Duck Dynasty" patriarch Phil Robertson, a pastor himself, told the pastors they must promote Christian values in the wider culture---within and outside their churches.
How were these messages received by the pastors?
Franklin Graham told the pastors, "Of the groups defined in Revelation 21:8, like murderers, idolaters, unbelievers, and others, the first group of persons listed were the cowardly."
Not surprisingly he titled his message, "Standing Strong On The Controversial Issues."
He said, "The definition of a coward is a coward will not confront an issue that needs to be confronted due to fear."
"That," he said "is a coward."
"God hates cowards. And the cowards that the Lord is referring to are the men and women who know the Truth but refuse to speak it," Graham said.
He told the pastors there is a profound need for churches to speak out against abortion and homosexuality---promising that he will not "be shut up."
There are several concentrated efforts to do just that---shut up Franklin Graham.
He said he has some pastor friends who tell him they just want to preach the gospel and not "become targets."
His response? "Well don't you know that the Lord Jesus Christ was a target?"
His analysis was as follows:
"Could we get our heads chopped off?"
"We could...maybe one day."
"Chop it off!"
He passionately told the pastors, "We have a responsibility to speak on the moral issues---abortion and homosexuality, these are moral issues. This is a free country, you can do what you want to do but I want you to know its a sin against God. This is sin."
Graham was given an award by Family Research Council for his actions in the public marketplace.
Alan Robertson, one of the sons of "Duck Dynasty" patriarch Phil Robertson, and a pastor himself, told the audience he was the Robertson man without a beard.
He also told them, "Spiritual leaders of churches in America should promote Christian values in the wider culture and political sphere."
Robertson said, "Politics are part of what governs our nation, and so we want that infused with the spiritual and the godly."
He admitted to the pastors "that for 22 years I was inside my church---sort of inside my bubble---just doing my week to week in my own little community, and sometimes we lose sight of the big picture."
"If the culture crumbles around all our church buildings, then what have we done," he asked the pastors?
He said as he has traveled in Europe and noticed the church buildings---he calls them empty museums that have become so because they have lost connection with the culture.
He says, "And so much of it was because they were lost in their own liturgy, and in their own doctrinal debates and discussions, and they lost sight of the culture."
I could not agree more.
Much hangs in the balance here in America.
To whom much has been given, much is required. We have been given much.
I am aware that a large number of pastors read this column. I pray you will consider the words of Franklin Graham and Alan Robertson and a growing chorus of your colleagues who are sensing an urgency to speak to the culture---perhaps re-evaluate your responsibility before God, to address the spiritual cultural issues of our day.
And to all my readers who are not pastors: You too have a sphere of influence. Graham and Robertson were not only speaking to pastors but to you, as well. And to me.
This is not a time to be silenced by fear or intimidation. It is a time to speak. To act, boldly...in faith.
Jesus Himself told us we are to be the "salt" and the "light" in a culture that is in rapid decay. The darkness is sobering.
I am talking more about this on the radio today. You may join me live at 9 AM PDT, or rebroadcast at 7:30 PM PDT from anywhere in the world. Here's how.
Be Strong. Be Bold. Be Vigilant. Be Discerning. Be Prayerful. Be Blessed.