Pastor's Corner

12 Sep
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Mid-Week Challenge

Did you ever think you would see the day when a minister with the last name of Graham would not be welcomed to a town? Not just a town, a whole country.  That is exactly what Muslim groups in Britain are trying to do to Franklin Graham.  The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association has been traveling to the UK for many years.  Like in the US, the crusade attracts thousands and, in many cases, leaves the town better than they found it.  Lives are changed for Jesus, business prosper due to the number of people and a sense of hope fills the people.  However, in Britain, we have seen a surge of Muslim support in recent years due to their relaxed immigration laws.  People of other faiths, and in many cases no faith, flocked to the country during its open boarders’ period a few years ago.  Now, Great Britain has seen a transformation in its leadership and cultural influence.  When the President visited the country just a few weeks ago he was met with protests and hostility that appeared to be supported by the local government.  Politics are one thing but there has always been a spirit of welcome to those who come bearing gifts.  Graham’s Samaritan’s Purse organization has benefited the lives of millions around the world.  Everything from Christmas boxes to health care to financial aid, the organization does not discriminate need based on religion, race or politics. As an Evangelical Christian, however, Graham personally makes no apologies for preaching the hope of Jesus during his campaigns and that seems to be the problem with these Muslim groups.  Labeled as hate speech, Graham’s messages were flagged by the Muslim Council of Britain as evidence of his need to be banned from the country.  Issuing a statement on their reasoning:

“In the past the government has banned individuals whom they claim are ‘not conducive to the public good’. Mr. Graham’s remarks are on record and clearly demonstrate a hatred for Muslims and other minorities. We would expect the government to apply its criteria here. If it does not, it will send a clear message that it is not consistent in challenging all forms of bigotry.” https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/sep/09/muslim-council-insists-evangelical-preacher-franklin-graham-be-denied-uk-visa

Sad how liberals cry free speech, toleration and the like but when you disagree or do not give them their way you are automatically labeled as a bigot. Graham is scheduled to be the featured speaker at the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association’s Festival of Hope in Blackpool on September 21 and no decision has been made yet as to accepting or even recognizing the MCB’s request.  The disturbing thing about this situation is that Muslims in the UK are different than the typical liberal in the US.  This particular group has supported the arrival of militant Muslims into the country whose jihadist preaching was so bad they were banned from places like Pakistan. https://www.jihadwatch.org/2018/09/uk-muslims-demand-that-franklin-graham-be-banned-from-the-country-for-criticizing-islam 

Now more than ever we must arm ourselves with the truth in our country.  We have individual rights that no other country has.  If we do not use these rights we will give them away easily.  First and foremost, we must possess the knowledge of the Scriptures.  Second, we must know our legal rights when practicing our religion or making expressions of faith.  There is a case in Louisiana where a business owner paid to have his logo painted onto a high school football field. The logo contained a cross symbol and the word “Christ” in the name of his business.  At the first game someone complained about the cross and the school told the crew to paint over it.  The business owner sued.  One complaint and the school acted.  The court agreed with the business owner but it was too late, the logo had been painted over.   http://www.ksla.com/2018/09/07/sign-benton-high-football-field-causes-controversy-legal-action/

Apathy is what allows these militant movements to grow so quickly.  The media makes it appear as if there is a big following behind these movements but they are a small, vocal group.  Very soon the actions of these groups will have an effect on you or someone you know.  At that point it will be too late to educate yourself. 

 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.2 Timothy 2:15

Honor Christ and let him be the Lord of your life. Always be ready to give an answer when someone asks you about your hope.1 Peter 3:15

Serving the Savior, 

Bro. Jonathan

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