As many of you know, Billy Graham and Charles Templeton were evangelists who rose to fame in the 40s (Graham, of course, is still an evangelist). Early in their careers they were friends – close friends. Many have said Templeton was the one that everyone thought was going to overturn the world with the Gospel. However, Templeton ended up leaving the Christian faith, eventually becoming an atheist.  In 1982, though still an atheist, he said of Billy Graham, “There is no feigning in him: he believes what he believes with an invincible innocence. He is the only mass evangelist I would trust” (Anecdotal Memoir). Templeton died in 2001 at the age of 86, shortly after he wrote what I consider to be one of the most heart-breaking books ever published: Farewell to God.


Billy Graham and Charles Templeton In Dialogue

Here is an excerpt from that book, about a pivotal conversation he had with Billy Graham as he was leaving the faith. The context is his desire to go to Princeton to study the Christian faith more critically. He wanted Graham to come with him. Please keep in mind, this is his account of the conversation:

“All our differences came to a head in a discussion which, better than anything I know, explains Billy Graham and his phenomenal success as an evangelist.

In the course of our conversation I said, ‘But, Billy, it’s simply not possible any longer to believe, for instance, the biblical account of creation. The world was not created over a period of days a few thousand years ago; it has evolved over millions of years. It’s not a matter of speculation; it’s a demonstrable fact.’

‘I don’t accept that’ Billy said. ‘And there are reputable scholars who don’t.’

‘Who are these scholars?’ I said. ‘Men in conservative Christian colleges[?]’

‘Most of them, yes,’ he said. ‘But that is not the point. I believe the Genesis account of creation because it’s in the Bible. I’ve discovered something in my ministry: When I take the Bible literally, when I proclaim it as the word of God, my preaching has power. When I stand on the platform and say, ‘God says,’ or ‘The Bible says,’ the Holy Spirit uses me. There are results. Wiser men than you or I have been arguing questions like this for centuries. I don’t have the time or the intellect to examine all sides of the theological dispute, so I’ve decided once for all to stop questioning and accept the Bible as God’s word.’

‘But Billy,’ I protested, ‘You cannot do that. You don’t dare stop thinking about the most important question in life. Do it and you begin to die. It’s intellectual suicide.'”

‘I don’t know about anybody else,’ he said, ‘but I’ve decided that that’s the path for me.'”

(Farewell to God, 7-8)

For me, this represents one of the saddest encounters two people have ever had. It recounts a decisive breach in the friendship between two men as one left Christ, never to come back, and the other went on to, in my opinion, change the world.

You won’t believe the scholars you can sit under today!

Belief and Understanding Are Not Contrasting Qualities

As I said, I don’t know if Graham’s words are the words he actually said, but I have no reason to doubt that they are. You see, there does come a time in our life when we “decide” to believe. It is not as if our intellect is no longer in the game, it is simply that there is a sufficient amount of evidence to make a commitment. Graham had enough. He is right, there is no way faith can wait until every stone is overturned. None of us will ever get to a place where our intellect has no objections whatsoever. This is the modernistic ideal of indubitability, which is impossible in any area of life. At some point in our journey, we decide that God is real, the Bible is trustworthy, and Christ is who he said he was.

Templeton, as his own story makes plain (p. 3), never truly reached a point where he was intellectually convicted of the truthfulness of Christianity (what the reformers called assensus). Assensus represents the conviction we have in our minds. Assent of the mind is vital to our faith. Graham, according to this testimony, had enough assensus to make a decision. He was not going to be an eternal “tire-kicker” with regard to Christianity. Sure, he could have waited, like Templeton, until every possible objection to the faith was answered, but this would amount to a failure of modernistic irrationality. We can never have all our questions answered. At some point there must be a sufficiency in probability.

There is a time when we, like Billy Graham, must stop the type of questioning that comes prior to faith, and make a decision. This does not mean we stop using our minds, as Templeton unfortunately assumed. In Christianity, we call this fides quaenes intellectum, “faith seeking understanding.” We believe in order to understand. We have faith and seek understanding.

May God give us all the ability to be like Billy Graham and make a decision to trust God and the Bible. May he help us to believe what we believe with an invincible innocence. Though doubts may still exist, they do not mean that our faith is not real.


C Michael Patton
C Michael Patton

C. Michael Patton is the primary contributor to the Parchment and Pen/Credo Blog. He has been in ministry for nearly twenty years as a pastor, author, speaker, and blogger. Find him on Patreon Th.M. Dallas Theological Seminary (2001), president of Credo House Ministries and Credo Courses, author of Now that I'm a Christian (Crossway, 2014) Increase My Faith (Credo House, 2011), and The Theology Program (Reclaiming the Mind Ministries, 2001-2006), host of Theology Unplugged, and primary blogger here at Parchment and Pen. But, most importantly, husband to a beautiful wife and father to four awesome children. Michael is available for speaking engagements. Join his Patreon and support his ministry

    58 replies to "Billy Graham and Charles Templeton: The Sad Tale of Two Evangelists"

    • Randall Rosness

      Jesus told his disciples “stop doubting and believe!” We doubt because we can’t understand everything. As human creations, we cannot fathom the mind of God; His ways, His economy. Transitioning to “belief” from doubt, eliminates our need for complete understanding. ” Blessed are those who believe, and yet have not seen.” How can we possibly understand creation from “nothing”? How can we understand love countering hatred? How do we identify “eternity”? We may have many questions, which will be answered in heaven, but probably not necessary now. Billy Graham chose belief and trust in the great God and Creator. Sadly, Charles Templeton needed every answer before taking the next step. An eye-opening Scripture is “those who persevere to the end WILL be saved.”Only God knows. We persevere and bear fruit because of God, not of ourselves.

      • Admin

        Thanks for the comments Randall!

      • Richard

        I’m troubled deeply by your sense that doubt is antagonistic to faith. It seems to me that doubt is motivated by honest inquiry and challenges to systems of thought that are not sound. You end your comment with the sense that perseverance for its own sake will be rewarded, a notion I find deeply troubling as it is assumed that Templeton did not in fact persevere in his pursuit of faith.
        . But in response to Grahm’s words (wherein I find the deepest suspicion), I must say that his justification for continuance of his mission scares me to death. He judges the message he preaches to be true because it gives him power and he sees results? He ignores reason for this?! Note how he says in quite relativistic fashion “its the right path for me.” I know the weight of this blog is on the side of “pro Billy,” but I want to suggest that the real hero here is Templeton, who wants so dearly to believe, but resists the irrational impulse to believe because it gives him confidence and power. I’m not suggesting there aren’t rational reasons to believe in God, but this particular case pains me when I consider how the Grahm model has so cheapened the project of robust, reason supported faith.

        • Stephen Chu

          You are right, I’m with you!
          I couldn’t agree with you: faith (religion) without reason is blind faith. All religions need faith, for none of them have ever seen who they believed. So, if Christianity is based on faith, it’s a shame to the Creator of the universe as described in the Bible, and totally ignored Romans 1:19-20,

          19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world,[a] in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.

          Here says that through the things that have been made, so they are without excuse. They can’t deny, They can’t argue, they have to admit. Of cause, this doesn’t mean silly enough they will accept! The Lord knows humans’ hearts. Not mention the consequence of Sin.

          The problem is, have you ever heard that theology separated with science? and this is the major reason why there’s no studies in seminaries teaching anything about science and challenge evolution.

          Billy’s problem:

          Since theological study excludes science, then he has a hard time to explain the origin of species, this will come to the conclusion that he accepted evolution as a God’s chosen way to make everything come true-he didn’t use his brain.

          Read this first: Wiser men than you or I have been arguing questions like this for centuries. I don’t have the time or the intellect to examine all sides of the theological dispute, so I’ve decided once for all to stop questioning and accept the Bible as God’s word.’

          and then you can understand why he accepts evolution.

          Billy Graham said it doesn’t matter what one believes about creation and evolution.

          “Either at a certain moment in evolution God breathed into one particular ape–man who was Adam, or God could have taken a handful of dust and created a man just like that.”

    • Leonard Carroll

      I am fortunate to have come to a position where I don’t believe, I know. The true Christian doesn’t have a religion, he has a relationship, and that relationship brings about experiences that leave one in total awe of His Magnificence.

      • Admin

        Hi Leonard,

        Thanks for the feedback. I’m sorry but I don’t understand your comment. Could you elaborate on what you don’t believe anymore?

        • Kenny

          I think Leonard is saying he doesn’t doubt at all anymore because now he KNOWS it’s true. He doesn’t just believe it. He KNOWS it. And the experiences he has had with God has confirmed it.

        • Admin

          Thanks Kenny. I suppose if Leonard doesn’t say anything we’ll go with that 🙂

        • Grumps

          Don’t be too fismissive of Leonard’s affirmation of relationship and the awfulness of God

      • Michael Holmes

        I agree with you, Leonard. It is God who opens our eyes to the truth of His Son and the reality of His kingdom (2 Cor. 4:6). And when this happens (the new birth), we just know.
        I like to say it is “in our bones.”

    • Kelechi

      Someone has said that all I have known teaches me to trust God for all I do not know.
      Isaac Newton the great scientist saw God behind the great order in creation
      You don’t even need to dig the ground to discover God, He is all around you.
      What is decisive is the heart behind our questions, if we are reverent and seek light, God will show us. If we are arrogant in our hearts, we cannot hear God.
      Only the sick man, the man who knows he is in need of help, will receive God’s help.

    • Thoughtful

      “You see, there does come a time in our life when we “decide” to believe.”

      There may indeed be such a moment, but it is certainly not when most of the empirical evidence is pointing in the opposite direction.

      That may be a moment for trust, driven by the belief that future evidence will eventually affirm my assessment of the situation, but that trust must be imbued with some degree of skepticism; the scientific notion that I may be completely or even partially wrong.

      “I beseech you, in the bowels of Christ, think it possible that you may be mistaken.”

      Without that humility, religious bigotry can deliver so much tragedy. Just because you believe in God, it does not follow that He agrees with your every thought.

      Arguably Billy Graham has used his political power to endorse so much that is wrong with America, such as its gun laws, the wastefulness of its military machine and its tolerance for a social inequality which may eventually destroy it as a nation state.

      Beware the congregation that thinks it has God on its side.

    • Reasonable

      I am reading the book, Farewell to God, which included the above quote. I do not agree with the idea that Billy was right and Charles wrong. I recommend reading the entire book, not just a quote, and then you will be in a much better position to decide who you want to “believe”.

      • Nelix

        So what’s your say, don’t u believe what Frank Billy said yet it’s scripture based

    • Allen Marsh

      Temple died. Today he is in hell. What a tragedy.
      Today we have much more scientific knowledge. It is impossible for the earth to be billions of years old–a few hundred thousand years maybe, but not billions. Many creationist sites give scientific proof. More than 90% of age-dating methods give evidence of this. I myself get much material from Answers In Genesis. Our faith is not based on scientific evidence, but if we will teach our youth those facts, it will help them withstand the siren song of atheist propagandists. Genesis 1-11 is scientific fact, not myth or legend.

      • Will Taylor

        Does our salvation depend solely on what Jesus did for us? Or does our own ability to understand play in to it? I think Temple just could not preach (in faith) any longer. I believe in one of his conversations with Graham he said….”I miss Him”….referring to Jesus. There must have been something still in his heart. If salvation depends on understanding, then there are multitudes that will go to hell.

      • J. Eisenhower

        The arrogance of believers is remarkable. And remarkably tragic. You could not possibly know if Temple (whoever he is) or Templeton, for that matter, is in hell. Yet there you state it, plain as day.

        As with many other believers, your arrogance appears to be rooted not in any character flaw but in who you choose to believe: Bone-fide, replicable and self-evident science, which has proven beyond any doubt that evolution is factual and the earth is billions of years old. Or the “science” of “creationist sites,” which literally fabricate “evidence,” twist facts, and outright lie to their readers and viewers to make their case. No, Genesis 1-11 is not scientific fact. No, the earth is not just a few hundred thousands of years old. To believe that is to be either woefully ignorant, mentally deficient or hopelessly deluded.

        I reject religion because of the ludicrous nature of it. Religion is the only thing in history that has made otherwise moral, sane and just men commit atrocities such as mass murder, genocide, gang rape, enslavement and bigotry on an epic scale. I don’t want part in any religion that says massacring an entire culture is ok because “god is on our side.”

        Then there’s also the fact that virtually EVERY SINGLE scientific discovery has backed up holy texts and the pronouncements of religious leaders whose word was supposedly infallible.

        Take Christianity, for example. The idea that the Bible is the literal — or even inspired — word of god is not based on fact, educated inference or the historical record.

        The New Testament alone contains so many contradictions, bigotry, hypocrisy and historical errors, it’s impossible to even trust the portions based on actual events. It was written over hundreds of years by mostly anonymous authors and edited for hundreds more years, mostly by politicians and clergy who based their edits not on belief or evidence but what best served their interests at the time.

        I have no problem with you or anyone else believing anything you want. Just don’t call Christianity or any other religion fact or science or objective truth. I, for one, will live my life based on the Golden Rule — it’s simple, straightforward and workable, without any bigotry, misogyny, contradictions or other nonsense.

        • Paul C.

          John 3:16..God’s love letter to us from the Apostle John. John 6 , all, is great also, for eating Jesus Spiritual food, for Eternal life.

    • Iris

      When I was a Nursing student, I commented (on the Studies of Anatomy) “Anyone who doubts that there is a GOD should study the human body”. We are put together in such minute detail. A “big bang” could never bring about all the magnificence of a human body even in a zillion years. When I audited Medical School for Doctors one of the comments from the instructor stuck with me, “When we find one answer there is always another question…..” This has been true in the medical world and in most all of life.
      That’s WHY the Bible says, “Lean not into your own understanding and I will direct your paths”…..Unfortunately, all to often I did lean on my own understanding. Life didn’t work so good when I did that. Only when I yielded to God in all circumstances could I be of the service my Spirit longed to be. I came to the conclusion that I didn’t need to know all the “conjunctions” of God……..That is to say the little things about God…….the “ifs; ors; ands” . God used me as his vessel when I prayed and believed as a child believes. All I need do is trust and then study to be a “workman of God”. That is the example that Billy Graham has not only spoken about but lived. Billy Graham has my full respect. In him and his past wife, you can see the JOY of the Lord in their faces. Even now, with him living in his house without the family that once was so active and full there, you can see the Joy in his face. Joy is inward. When this Joy is from Christ it endures all, hopes for all and believes in the best for those they love. Happiness is external circumstances which is only temporary. You know them by their fruit. Billy Graham’s life was full of fruit for the Kingdom. Templeton may later have turned to Jesus on his deathbed.I can only hope that Templeton turned to the Lord in the end of his days on his deathbed and has met Ruth Graham in Heaven. I hope he came to realize it was ok to question but faith is the most important so that he did not face an eternity of damnation. This we do not know. We can only hope and leave it in God’s hands as to what Templeton’s decision was. It is out of our hands and in much bigger hands than ours…the one who holds the whole world in his hands who knows all and sees all. Praise GOD for the JOY he brings to Christians in ALL circumstances.

    • Mike

      He was an Agnostic. Please read his own book.

    • Jack

      Thank you Michael for a fine post. And Iris, your comment is well said.
      And the best science does indeed prove the falsehood of evolution.
      And sheer logic dictates these realities:
      1. Something cannot come from nothing. (Note: Even an idea does not come from nothing — it comes from someone.)
      2. Life cannot come from non-life.
      3. Intelligence cannot come from no intelligence.
      So —
      4. “In the beginning” (before our universe) there was something — since something can’t come from nothing.
      5. The “something” that was in the beginning had life — because life exists, and life can’t come from non-life.
      6. The “something” that was in the beginning also had intelligence – of course, because intelligence exists,
      and non-intelligence can’t produce intelligence.
      7. The “something” that was in the beginning is God — obviously, because only in God could life and intelligence exist at the beginning of the universe.

      … keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called: Which some professing have erred concerning the faith…
      1 Timothy 6:20-21 — KJV

      • Michael Holmes

        Evolution (including theistic evolution) and old age earth thinking (progressive creation) do not appeal to my common sense or reason. Even if I was not a Christian, there is no way I could believe evolution.

        • Grace Woodard

          So Michael, how do you explain genetics and DNA without talking about evolution, or acknowledging that evolutionary exploration yielded discoveries of DNA, chromosomes, you know, the big stuff of life?

    • Raphael

      Christianity is not a religion like these other religions but a relationship with God, the Bible says in Romans 10:17″So then faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God” so it’s very vital to continue hearing His Word, one cannot save two masters at a time but has to choose one, so as for Billy Graham he chose too just focus on one master but for as for Templeton he must have either being a double minded person taking on both God and Atheists which is having two masters, and am sure he must have even reached a point of wanting proof and he choose science which demands proof, and neglected the faith way, coz am sure he must have been in a situation which required him to apply higher faith and he failed, ended up frustrated and chose to leave Christianity coz his foundation in Christ wasn’t built on solid foundation and as time kept on moving his faith kept on weakening until finally he released it all, that’s the parable of the 4 soils in Luke 8:1-15 is very important and requires understanding coz it has deep revelations. In my conclusion God is real, just nature all round the world will tell you more about His creation when looked at deeply, God is Mother Nature Himself and hope Templeton in his last days of the earth repented and came back to God.

    • William Kelly

      Christianity hinges on the resurrection of the man we now call Jesus. One of the best and award winning legal editors of the Chicago Tribune, Lee Strobel, was a devout atheist. He who spent almost two year trying to prove that the resurrection of Jesus never happened. After his long and detailed investigation, he stated on Good Morning America, “There is no doubt it happened. I’m from the old school of journalism where you examine both sides of the story”. That statement is from a man who was an expert at reviewing evidence, an atheist trying to prove God does not exist. I need know more than that, I have rad and studied the investigations of many men smarter than I and I know only one thing: Jesus rose from the dead. I will never know why we are as we are and why humanity exist as as it does. I am at peace with that.

    • Sam Osborne

      C. Michael Patton mistakenly contends, “This is the modernistic ideal of indubitability, which is impossible in any area of life.” This may be the outlook of some “modernists” (such as individuals engaged in scientific investigation that maintain faith in the existence of the God of the Bible), however many “modernists” are skeptics and consider the human capacity to make senses of existence, life and awareness and unending investigation of a bottomless pail of whatever can be more thoroughly known.

      For some of us the words of an early promoter of skepticism, René Descartes, can be in paraphrase well translated into English: “I doubt, therefore I am.” To find individuals that have most surely wrapped themselves in dead-end certitude, look no further than those whose outlook is as stilled at Billy Graham encouraged them to have it.

    • Sam Osborne

      C. Michael Patton mistakenly contends, “This is the modernistic ideal of indubitability, which is impossible in any area of life.” This may be the outlook of some “modernists” (such as individuals engaged in scientific investigation that maintain faith in the existence of the God of the Bible), however many “modernists” are skeptics and consider our human efforts to make ever greater sense of what we experience as existence, life and awareness is a delving into a bottomless pail of that which is subject to ever greater examined without any known end.

      For some of us the words of an early promoter of skepticism, René Descartes, can in paraphrase be well translated into English: “I doubt, therefore I am.” To find individuals that have most surely wrapped themselves in dead-end certitude, look no further than those whose outlook is as dead-ended as Billy Graham encouraged them to have it.

    • I am continually searching online for ideas that can assist
      me. Thanks!

    • Tommy

      If you could here John MacAuthers message, tale of 2preachers, Peter and Judas, both seen miracles, both done miracles, healing, casting out demons, both denied Christ, difference, one had his motives to become powerful to follow One for his own greed, pride and advancement, the other simply loved Christ with unabandment, went out and wept bitterly repented, and was used by God powerfully, the other was very sorry for what he did, but killed himself after being overtaken by Satan, the big difference is a Love for Jesus, John 21:15. This is the difference between false faith and true faith.

      • Darren

        Why are you convinced Templeton is in hell..
        Regardless of his belief title, he clearly has a love for Jesus.

        • karen goetz

          Agreed- I don’t think he’s in Hell–God is a compassionate God with mercy…God knew his heart-his yearning and missing Jesus. And only God knows. We can only hope and have belief that Templeton-by his own account- was not seared off enough to enter the gates of heaven. Praise God! God is forever loving!

      • Jilly_K

        I am watching this RIGHT NOW. Profound. Powerful.



    • Narendra KV

      Charles Templeton left Christianity out of disillusionment of his faith. There are a number of contradictions in the Bible that defies the belief that it was a word of GOD. After converting over 50% of current Christians in Asia and Africa, he studied the religion at the Master’s level and understood the folly of his preachings. It is sad that many of the converts do not go beyond their Church and read the history of Christianity and the Bible through the eyes of western theologists.

    • Albert

      How can a divinely inspired book be self-contradictory?…Christianity is a hoax…in the book history of the church..there is no God but only sins like invest,genocide etc. If Jesus is the Prince of peace why the fuck does he have to burn the houses of the non believers..? I want an answer from the intellectuals commenting here…only then can I think of embracing Christianity

    • Susan Philip

      At some point you have to make a choice. Life is all about that.

      • Darren

        Does making a choice allow for continued learning or do we all need to be like Graham?

    • Dave W O'Brien

      Claiming that you or anyone else can “walk away” from being a child of God, is evidence that you have no clue what salvation is.

    • David T.

      My own understanding of the Genesis creation account was brought into full clarity by reading Gorman Gray’s “The Age of the Universe: What are the Biblical Limits?”
      ( The Age of the Universe: What Are the Biblical Limits? (9780965594202): Gorman Gray: Books.)
      It reconciles science with the Bible by confirming the complete accuracy of the creation account that describes the creation of the earth’s biosphere approximately 7000 years ago from the vision given to Moses from his earthly perspective. Absolutely ALL of it was spoken into existence by Elohim. All of the celestial bodies in the universe existed after Gen 1:1 and are ancient. But mankind, and the biosphere in which we live with all other creatures, are “young”, He proves it by providing a better English rendering of the original Hebrew. Remain teachable and read his book. It’s worth your time to check it out.

      • Darren

        WoW! Full clarity huh?

    • Charles Oakey

      “Farewell to God” is my favorite book. Charles Templeton was a great man.

    • Von Richten

      Albert on 1/18 spoke of contradictions, a common critique of the Bible. Many of the so-called contradictions are two accounts of the same event from a different view. If I said that I was working outside my house in the yard and it was chilly and all the wildlife were in their burrows and my wife was working outside in the yard at the same time and was warmed by the sun and there were birds building nests. Both accounts are true. Besides that, if every account were exactly the same, it might look like a conspiracy. Even more, no supposed contradiction in the Bible affects any doctrine.

      Albert has also chosen a few verses without understanding or even reading the whole Bible. Maybe he would like to share the contradictions with us? It’s such an easy way to avoid a serious discussion, but nobody can argue their way to belief.

    • SolaAkin

      There is no need for any form of disputation with those who have chosen to exercise their reasoning ability to take God out of the picture of human existence, they have been judged already. It is amazing that the “wise” of this world do not know that they have been deceived. There is no doubt that we are in the age of reason, knowledge is increasing, but not about God. Satan planted the seed of arrogance in man in the garden of Eden to challenge God, Adam and Eve fell for deception and were cast out, the world has never remained the same since that time. Unfortunately, that same crooked spirit is still at work in many lives today, the spirit of the power of the air that dwells in the children of disobedience. I will rather be a fool and end up in heaven with God than be “wise” in this world, only to be cast into hell fire forever. Heaven is not meant for the “wise”, but those regarded as fools. We all have a lifespan, no matter how long we live, we are bound to die one day and that maybe tomorrow, but we must all be ready to meet our Maker. You cannot antagonize God and expect to live with Him one day, the choice has been given to everyone, you believe in Jesus and you shall be saved. For all saints, keep on trusting, loving and waiting for the Master, he that will come will come and will not tarry. Maranatha!

    • Sam Osborne

      We members of humanity make sense with a limited number of limited sense modalities. To wit, our eye does not have the acuity or field of vision of an eagle, our hearing is much more limited than that of a wild dog, our sense of smell is blunt compared to that of a fox, our sense of touch is blunt compared to the tip of a frogs tongue, we have neither the sonar capacity of a bat or dolphin and are not as prescient as a dear in the woods. And even aided by optical, mechanical and electronic devices our ability to search the universe from a planet that is proportionally smaller than the tiniest speck of dust, and leaves us digging into a huge pile of what is going to be ever unknown within our limited capacity to know much of anything that comes close to much about everything. To satisfy ourselves that we know something of ultimate values because it is written in a book may be comforting in terms of the fact that each and everyone lives a short life, dies and is no more. Such has meaning in terms of one wanting to believe there is more to life than what one makes of it on Earth upon till being brain dead. No one has ever been able to identify anything that lives on beyond a dead body—they just feel that while they are living that there must be something. If worms bother to be into the same thing they are well equipped to keep it a secret.

      • Sam Osborne

        A glance at the vast nature of the universe (or universes) that we can detect might have us wonder why the God of the Bible created this vast thing when he was only going to entertain himself by coming up with mankind to place of a small speck of dust. And it believers contend that God did so to entertain himself—which seem a bit far fetched from just a glance at the rest of what is in the vast beyond. Oh, and believers will also contend that they are made in God’s image and likeness when it is rather obvious that God as limited as the one of the Bible has been made in mankind;s image in likeness. Is there something beyond all that there is that can be fathomed? Sure, but we limited humans can only consider it being greatly beyond us and best do so within the Wisdom of Awe. Enjoy live and make the most of what we have and share it as best we can.

    • Sam Osborne

      A glance at the vast nature of the universe (or universes) that we can detect might have us wonder why the God of the Bible created this vast thing when he was only going to entertain himself by coming up with mankind to place on a small speck of dust. And it believers contend that God did so to entertain himself, it seem a bit far fetched from just a glance at the rest of what is in the vast beyond. Oh, and believers will also contend that they are made in God’s image and likeness when it is rather obvious that God (as limited as the one of the Bible) has been made in mankind”s image in likeness. Is there something beyond all that there is that can be fathomed? Sure, but we limited humans can only consider it being greatly beyond us and best do so within the Wisdom of Awe. Enjoy, live and make the most of what we have and share it as best we can.

    • Gordon

      Everything about the dating of creation is absolutely irrelevant when the word “create” is involved. We could have all been created 30 seconds ago, all of our memories being created with us, and never be able to tell the difference.
      However, the fact that light has a speed and the farthest objects seen are triangulated at 15bn LY away, and that we are still waiting for the 8th day of creation (it’s obvious that God has been at rest with how subtle his involvement down here is)- makes YEC look guilty until proven innocent.
      Preaching for “results” without inquiry, though, is grievous. Graham was like the careless farmer who scattered his seeds all over his rocky and weedy property, wasting it on converting millions out of fear of hell and God’s unstoppable and unquenchable hatred and rage against those who die while in sin. Most deconvert or go stale when they’re too tired to fret anymore about eternity.
      But I suppose that’s the Gospel or is it the Fælspel. It’s all about hell. All of it. The cross, Jesus, love, are all just minor details and specifics when you’re confronted with neverending, infinite, merciless torment.

    • Joseph Kelley

      I’m sure that I’m on a lower intellectual level than most of you here but There have been some miracles happen in my life that there can be no other reason they happened except that God intervened. Some because I was ignorant some because of Alcohol. I’m 73 and I’m still here for some reason. I know at least 7 incidents off hand and probably more God knows about that I don’t.

    • Sam Osborne

      From start to finish and inconsistently in between the Bible does not make coherent sense and the God that supposedly authored it is a very puny entity that in place of making man in “his” image and likeness has been authored into the likeness of man of male gender (which prompts doubt as to why such a God is engendered with sexual parts when a supposed tongue is m ore than creative enough). And before the start and eternally after finish and with in-between being nothing more than the blink of God’s human imaging eye, mankind’s existence wouldn’t be of much significance in the first place (in all eternity in which there is not first place) or in last place (in all eternity in which there is no last place) or in between (within something where there is no such thing as an in-between). In celebratory curiosity of what is beyond that which humanity considers existence, life and awareness better it be left an open book filled with the Wisdom of Awe that pops as bits of awareness out of rhyme and reason getting cart –before the horse flipped into our senses and in place of making sense of them we deeply feel so much.

      • karen goetz

        Thank you for your comment Sam– so according to your post- you read the whole bible? Not just bits of it?

        • Sam Osborne

          If one reads the Bible they do so bits of it a time and what they make of what they read comes out of bits of what they have learned before, after and while reading the Bible. Further, when most people read bits of the Bible and muse about them while engorged in what they call Bible Study, they typically do not study how and when the Bible may have come to be and how that fits into realty. Would such individuals have no faith if there was not Bible?

    • Jeffrey Alexander Chinn

      Wow. I am simply amazed at some of these comments.
      I do not simply “believe” without reason. At the same time, I know WITH REASON, that God created as He said in Genesis. Literally. Using the word “day” meaning what the human race has known for 6,000 years – 24 hours – one revolution of the earth. Period.
      Why am I so positive?
      No one in the recorded Word of God, challenged what Genesis said. The odds of 40 documenters writing down “books”, over 1400 years to form God’s Revelation and having them fit tight like a large puzzle is astounding. Archeological evidence is being continusouly unconvered thanks to modern technology (via God!) and ALWAYS proves the bible’s accuracy. The mathematical probability of DNA just happening on its own is 1×10 to the infinit power. I could go on, but you get the idea.
      The people who deny Genesis literally also deny real science, mathematics, logic, and reason. Satan, like everything else he has done, polluted the word “Science” and a mass majority of PHD’s accept Satan’s deception. Satan has taken good words/phrases and twisted them as a demon-coming-as-an-angel of light would do: Gay now means sexual pervert. Woman’s choice now means murder your baby. Progressive is regressing. SCIENCE now means – listening to Atheists and Agnostics saying that they are scientists when in fact, they are not.

    • Al Gee

      Any attempt to justify or prove the existence of the Christian god in one’s mind can only be successful in one’s mind if you begin with the assumption that this god is real. This leads to believing the bible in in its entirety for all of its failings and contradictions. Believing that this god is all-knowing, all-present and all-loving is also a necessary step, flying in the face of all the evidence to the contrary. Indeed, a god that shows this “perfect” love by choosing to “save” a select few of his creating while dooming the others to eternal death, and prolonging the misery by dragging out the second coming while the population of hell grows in leaps and bounds, is certainly not the type of “love” I am drawn to. A logical rational human that would begin with no preconceived conclusion that this god is real, will come to the conclusion that there is no basis for belief in a god at all. All of the so-called scientific proof of creation is tainted by the pre-conceived notion that it is true. The argument that we just can’t understand the apparent contradictions of god and creation because “his ways are higher than ours” is the biggest cop-out of all. I come from a position of seeing both sides of the issue…born-again Christian for 45 years before finally realizing it was all meaningless. The freedom and happiness I’ve felt since leaving it all behind is astounding!

    • [email protected]

      Good morning All. I was awakened this morning by a story about a Former Christian Evangelist; Charles Templeton. I am approaching 70 years of age myself, and I wondered why I was awakened this morning by this Netflix rendering of the Man who decided to turn away from The Most High God and his precious Son, Christ.
      When I was a youth in my faith, there were rumors of an evangelist that was preaching the Word of God but did not believe the Word himself. I did not know the person’s name, but I do know as a youth in America, he was associated with Billy Graham. As I listened to documentary film on Mr. Templeton, it bothered me that no one mentioned how the enemy of those who love Jesus comes to steal, kill, and destroy. I was disturbed about Charles Templeton and wondered what really happened to him to make a 100 degree turn away from what he believed in his beginnng faith walk. I was inspired to research a scripture and an article online that explains perhaps, what really happened to this sad man. I will share it now as a reference and my conclusion to this matter.
      “MAY 13, 2020, John Longmire Daily Devotions
      The Reading

      “This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God. The seed along the path are those who have heard and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved.” (Luke 8:11-12)”


      We have an enemy. The devil is the enemy of the people of God and works continually for their downfall. The devil is not fiction, but a real and spiritual creature that stands in opposition to the kingdom of God. Before the creation of this world, there was war in heaven. The Bible gives us bits and fragments of this story, just enough for us to understand that we indeed have an enemy. Perhaps in the future kingdom, we will learn the full scope of this story, but all we need to know now is that the devil is filled with hatred. He hates God, and so he also hates those whom God loves. For some people, the problem is not that they can’t hear God; the problem is that the devil has snatched away every idea God has worked to implant.

      The Prayer

      Lord, help me to hear your Word. But help me also to withstand the devil’s attempts to snatch it away. Let me be wise to his working and stand against his activity. Let your living Word take root within me and grow to bear fruit!

      Life Application

      Have you ever sat down to read the Bible or spend time in prayer, and suddenly, a host of things flood your mind that need your immediate attention? Have you ever experienced a closeness to God, but then when the moment passes, doubts flood your mind as to the authenticity of your experience? You should know that you have an enemy that stands against your spiritual growth. Each time you receive a Word from the Lord, the devil will attempt to snatch it away. As a spiritual creature, the devil has the ability to inject thoughts into your minds. (There’s an unsettling idea!) He will cause you to doubt what you’ve heard or feel silly at believing that the God of the universe can speak to you. The devil is very clever and has been working for the downfall of humanity for many years. He knows the patterns by which we think. But we can speak against him and expel all the thoughts and temptations he sends our way.

      My final words. One thing is for certain. We are exhorted to walk by faith, and not by sight (our human senses). Love to you all, Jacqueline Maree

    • Sam

      All of us members of the human species whose thinking is at base rooted in reality make sense (with our limited number of sense modalities) in terms of cause and effect. At least those of us who consider ourselves to be sane do so and beyond that only seem to universally share one experience drawn conclusion — that being that psychically on planet Earth everyone has and will continue to die. How mankind has and still deals with this ultimate predicament varies greatly: ranging from variously ignoring the fact up to thinking up some kind of “spiritual” continuance of individual life beyond the grave. What we think and have to say about death goes on and on until we are brain dead, and then . . . ah, the dead tell no tails?

    • TJ

      I think God wrote the creation story in a way that ancient humans could understand. People back then did not even understand the concept of billion or millions of years. They also didn’t understand DNA chromosomes, genetics,or survival of the fittest. They DID understand days, and the week. I think had the bible been written today with modern humans in mind, he probably would have gone into more scientific detail. Like with our own children. When they ask hard questions such as where do babies come from, we bring it down to their level of understanding. We don’t give them the intimate details until they are old enough to hear it.

    • Ryan

      To be honest, I think this is where Billy reveals that he himself was not a true Christian.

    • Cristo Rodriguez

      Hi, I think the key for Christians in this area is to combine Graham’s commitments with Templeton’s desire to learn. I also don’t think Graham ceased to learn but ceased to doubt if there would be an answer and to hold to what he had already discovered under the stones he had already looked. That’s a pretty rational set of decisions I think given our finite intellect and time. Thy Word Is Truth by EJ Young is a great piece on how to deal with this topic. Also, Michael C Patton is not faith seeking understanding missing an (r) in the Latin version you cite. Shouldn’t it be ‘fides quaerens intellectum’?

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