Franklin Graham: Standing Strong for Christ

Jul 1, 2021 | News

In this day when the immoral pressures of our decadent culture are growing stronger and more belligerent by the moment, it’s encouraging to see those who are standing strong in Christ.

That’s certainly true in the field of higher education, where the new administration in Washington is doing all it can to reverse policies put in place under President Trump to protect Christian schools grounded in Biblical convictions. The extraordinary push by the brazen LGBTQ lobby with the backing of the current administration (especially Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra, who as attorney general of California led an aggressive push against religious freedoms) has created a climate of deep hostility toward Christian colleges and universities.

Threats abound from liberal courts and the Biden administration. The Equality Act, which has already passed the House and is held at bay by only a few votes in the Senate, is particularly ominous, as it would usher in a new age of persecution for religious institutions.

That’s why I am so thankful for Christian schools that have refused to compromise their Biblical beliefs, especially on such critical issues as the sanctity of marriage between one man and one woman, and the clear Scriptural distinction between male and female.

These schools are refusing to bend to the intense pressures. They are refusing to bow to the immoral idols of this age. They are standing strong for Christ and His Kingdom, and it’s our distinct privilege to highlight just a few of these courageous schools.

It’s incredible to think just how far some colleges and universities have strayed from their roots. Prestigious institutions like Harvard, Yale and Princeton were all originally founded to train ministers. The noted 18th-century preacher and evangelist Jonathan Edwards served as the president of Princeton. In fact, Princeton’s official motto to this day remains, “Under God’s Power She Flourishes,” and its seal reads “Old Testament and New Testament.”

There’s no way around it—we have slipped ever further into a moral abyss in this nation, but now is not the time to give up. Absolutely not!

Think for just a minute about the Biblical Prophet Daniel.

Daniel was taken captive along with many other Judeans by the pagan Babylonians during the reign of Judean King Jehoiakim. The northern kingdom of Israel had already fallen to the Assyrians more than a hundred years earlier. It was a dark, dark time.

I’m sure you know the story. Taken into the king’s service, Daniel, in obedience to God, refused the choice food he was offered (perhaps because it would be considered unclean to a Hebrew or because it might have been offered to an idol). God gave him favor, and he eventually rose to become ruler of the whole province of Babylon after interpreting King Nebuchadnezzar’s dream. Later on, under a new king, he was thrown into a lion’s den because he continued to pray to the one true God.

But listen, it’s all because Daniel remained steadfast in his faith in God and refused to compromise in even the slightest detail. “Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank” (Daniel 1:8).

When Daniel was told that praying to anyone except the king was forbidden, “he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem, he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days” (Daniel 6:10).

Daniel was resolute in his faith and practice. He would not yield an inch to the wicked culture of his day. He would not bend nor bow to anyone but his God.

This is exactly how Christians should respond in these perilous days. Men, women and young people—all of us—must stand strong and unafraid against the powerful currents of godlessness that grow more dangerous by the day.

It starts with making up our minds not to accept the false narrative of a secular, atheistic culture. We have to make the Word of God our absolute source of truth, come what may.

And it continues by persevering in prayer and personal holy conduct, regardless of the consequences. Daniel spent time with God, seeking His face and continually growing in his fear and reverence of the Lord. That emboldened him to face his enemies and refuse to waver.

But Daniel did more than pray.

He wrote this near the end of his prophetic book: “The people who know their God shall stand firm and take action” (Daniel 11:32, ESV). Knowing God and being a man of resolute action went hand in hand for Daniel.

So it should be for us today.

I believe in taking action when the forces of evil are knocking on the door and seeking to destroy our families and our nation. For the sake of His great Name, I will stand strong, by His grace, for my children and grandchildren. There’s too much at stake.

I thank God for those who are resisting the evil of our day. I know there are millions of God-fearing believers who are also not afraid to speak the truth even when lies have gained so much ground.

In the words of the Apostle Paul: “Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong” (1 Corinthians 16:13, ESV).

Unless otherwise noted, Scripture quotations are taken from The Holy Bible, New King James Version. The Scripture quotations marked ESV are taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version.