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Questions and Answers By Billy Graham

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Questions and Answers By Billy Graham - Page 41 Empty Re: Questions and Answers By Billy Graham

Post  Admin on Sat 12 Mar 2011, 4:36 pm

Can the Devil Put Ideas Into Our Heads?

Q: Can the devil put ideas into our heads? If he can, then how can we keep it from happening? And if he can't, then where do temptations come from? -- M.C.

A: The devil certainly can put temptations before us, and on occasion, he even can plant evil thoughts and desires in our minds, if we let him. He can be very cunning, and often we don't even realize what he's doing.

I think of Judas, for example. He was one of Jesus' band of 12 disciples, and like the others, he had heard Jesus' teaching and seen His miracles. But down inside, Judas had not submitted his life to Jesus; he was only interested in himself. Driven by selfishness and greed, he stole money from the other disciples (see John 12:6), and when the opportunity came to betray Jesus to His enemies, he agreed to do so for 30 silver coins.

Who was responsible for causing him to commit this terrible sin? Was it Satan -- or did it come from within Judas' own evil heart? Theologians have pondered that question for centuries -- but perhaps the answer is "both". By his selfishness and greed, Judas opened his life to the devil's influence -- and just before sneaking away to betray Jesus we read that "Satan entered into him" (John 13:27).

Don't take Satan lightly -- but on the other hand, don't be paralyzed by fear. Instead, put your life into Christ's hands, and learn to walk with Him every day. The closer we are to Christ, the farther we are from the devil and his power to influence us. The Bible says, "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you" (James 4:7-8).

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.


Am I Wrong to Enjoy Life Rather Than Work Hard?

Q: My wife gets after me because she says I'm lazy and don't get things done around the house, but I don't see anything wrong with enjoying life once in a while. Maybe she's right, but I wish she'd see my point of view. Am I wrong to feel this way? -- C.W.

A: We can't always live the way we'd like to; we all have responsibilities we need to fulfill -- even when we wish we were doing something else. One of the marks of a mature person is a willingness to accept responsibility.

A lazy person, however, ignores responsibilities, and puts their own comfort and desires first. They seek the easy way in life instead of the right way, even if the easy way causes hardship down the road. In the long run the lazy person hurts not only himself but everyone who depends on him. The Bible warns, "One who is slack in his work is brother to one who destroys" (Proverbs 18:9).

Is your wife right about you? Only you can answer this -- but I pray you will, because if it's true, you need to take steps to correct it. God doesn't want you to be lazy or irresponsible! Ask Him to help you be more disciplined, and to set aside time for the things you need to do. Make lists if you tend to let things slide; you'll find great satisfaction in crossing off each task when it's finished.

Is it wrong to enjoy ourselves and have times of relaxation? No, not at all; God wants us to enjoy His good gifts. But don't neglect God's greatest gift -- the gift of His Son, Jesus Christ. Commit your life to Him, and then ask Him to help you become the husband He wants you to be.

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
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Post  Admin on Thu 10 Mar 2011, 3:16 pm

Can God Help Me Stop Worrying?

Q: I admit I'm a worrier, but I just can't help it. I've always been this way, and no matter what people say to try to reassure me, I still worry about what might happen -- not just to me, but to everyone in my family. Are some people just natural worriers? -- Mrs. J.D.

A: Yes, some of us do worry more than most people do. And some of us are exactly the opposite -- not worrying about anything and even ignoring obvious dangers.

But neither extreme is healthy or right. The constant worrier is always stressed and never at peace, while the carefree person who ignores life's dangers often ends up making disastrous decisions about their future, or even putting their lives at risk. The Bible wisely says, "The wisdom of the prudent is to give thought to their ways, but the folly of fools is deception" (Proverbs 14:8).

The key for someone like you is to learn to trust God for the future, and to commit your worries into His hands. After all, God knows the future, and He has promised to be with us when we turn to Him in faith and trust. As long as we think the future is up to us, we'll always be nervous. But when we understand that our loving God is in control, then we don't need to worry and fret about the future.

Begin by trusting Jesus Christ for the most important reality you (or anyone else) will ever face: your eternal destiny. By faith ask Him to come into your life and save you -- and He will. Then ask Him to help you commit your worries into His hands every day. The Bible says, "Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you" (1 Peter 5:7).

(Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.)

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Post  Admin on Tue 08 Mar 2011, 2:19 pm

Shouldn't My Paster Keep My Personal Business Confidential?

Q: I'm really upset because I asked my pastor for advice about a very personal problem, and a few weeks later I discovered he had told several people about it. Wasn't this wrong? -- Mrs. N.R.

A: Yes, it was wrong for your pastor to betray your trust by telling others about the conversation you had with him -- a conversation you assumed would be in confidence. We all need to keep confidences, and this is especially true for those who've been called to serve others in Christ's name. The Bible says, "A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy man keeps a secret" (Proverbs 11:13).

I can only speculate why he did this (if he even stopped to think about it). Perhaps he's just young and inexperienced; perhaps in a weak moment he gave in to the temptation to show off by letting others know he knew something they didn't know. But whatever the reason, what he did was wrong, and he not only hurt you but he also hurt himself and his ministry. Will others now feel free to tell him their problems? I doubt it.

What should you do? First, I suggest you let him know of your disappointment (perhaps in a brief note) -- not out of anger, but because you want to help him. Then ask God to help you overcome your feelings about him, and to forgive him. Don't let this become a barrier that cuts you off from your church's ministry.

Then learn to turn your problems over to Christ, seeking His wisdom for their solution. Sometimes He gives it through others; sometimes it comes as we pray and read the Bible. The Bible says, "Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path" (Psalm 119:105).

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

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Post  Admin on Mon 07 Mar 2011, 2:01 pm

If Angels Are Real, Why Can't We See Them?

Q: If angels are real, then why can't we see them? I know you often see pictures or figures of them with wings and halos and everything, but how do we know what they look like, or even if they exist? -- Mrs. H.R.

A: Angels are spiritual beings -- that is, they don't have physical bodies that we can see or touch. The Bible calls them "ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation" (Hebrews 1:14).

At times, however, they can assume physical form -- and when that happens, they can be seen by us. The Bible indicates this happens only rarely -- but it does happen. At times, their appearance is glorious and radiant, and they are immediately recognized as angelic beings. At the end of the present age, for example, the Bible says that the angelic hosts of heaven will accompany Christ as He comes again in glory (see Matthew 25:31). At other times, however, they are unrecognized because they appear as ordinary humans. The Bible says that "some people have entertained (or welcomed) angels without knowing it" (Hebrews 13:2).

We should take great comfort in the fact that we are never alone if we know Christ. We are never alone because He lives within us by His Holy Spirit -- but we also are never alone because His angels are constantly with us. The Bible says, "He will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways" (Psalm 91:11).

At the same time, we are not to worship the angels or make them the center of our attention. Christ alone is our Savior, and He alone is worthy of our faith. Is He the center of your life?

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.

<><
Does God Know Everything That's Going to Happen?

Q: Does God know everything that's going to happen to us? I suppose you'll say He does, but if He knows everything, then why doesn't He intervene and stop all the bad stuff before it even happens? -- Z.D.

A: Nothing ever catches God by surprise; He knows everything that's going to happen to us. As the Psalmist wrote, "His understanding has no limit" (Psalm 147:5).

Why, then, doesn't He intervene and keep evil things from happening to us? This isn't an easy question to answer; God is far greater than we are, and His wisdom is far greater than ours. He also sees the whole picture, while we see only a small part. The Bible says, "Who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been his counselor?" (Romans 11:34).

The Bible does remind us, however, that evil is real, and although God is at work, Satan also is at work. We are part of a great spiritual battlefield, and every day spiritual warfare rages around us. Satan isn't a cute figure with a red suit and a forked tail (as we often picture him). Satan is powerful and absolutely evil -- and in this present age he is doing all he can to impose his will on the world.

But Satan is a defeated foe -- and some day Christ's victory over evil and death and Satan will be complete! The proof is Jesus' triumph over the power of death. Don't get discouraged, and don't build your life on the wrong foundation. Instead, by faith give your life to Jesus Christ and build your life on Him. He alone gives us hope, because He is with us no matter what happens to us -- and some day we'll be safely in His presence forever.

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
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Post  Admin on Sat 05 Mar 2011, 2:28 pm

What Will We Look Like in Heaven?

Q: What will we look like when we get to heaven? Will we wear white robes, for example, like I've heard some people say? And will we be able to recognize each other? I've always been curious about this. -- R.W.

A: The Bible doesn't answer all our questions about heaven, including the question of what exactly we'll look like when we get there.

But one thing is clear: In heaven, we will have new and perfect bodies -- bodies that will never age or become weak or die, because they will be like Christ's glorious body after His resurrection. Down here, our bodies have been weakened by sin -- but in heaven, all that will be behind us, because by His death and resurrection Christ conquered all sin and sickness and death. The Bible says that in heaven Christ "will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body" (Philippians 3:21).

The Bible gives us a hint of what we will be like in its account of Jesus' transfiguration. (You can read it in Luke 9:28-36.) On that occasion, Jesus went with three of His disciples up to a lonely mountain. There, His appearance was transformed into something indescribably glorious, as His divine nature shone through His human nature. Moses and Elijah came from heaven to talk with Him, and their appearance was likewise wonderful. The Bible says they "appeared in glorious splendor" (Luke 9:30).

This is what our bodies will be like when we get to heaven: transformed into something glorious. And yet Moses and Elijah were still recognizable -- and we will be also. Are you sure that heaven is your final destination? Make certain of your salvation by giving your life to Jesus Christ today.

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.

<><
If Our Sins Are Forgiven, Why Will We Stand Before God to Be Judged?

Q: If all our sins are forgiven, then why does the Bible say we'll have to stand before God to be judged? Does this mean it isn't enough to believe in Jesus and put our trust in Him as our Savior? -- Mrs. S.L.

A: No, this isn't what it means. One of the Bible's greatest truths is that when Jesus Christ died on the cross all our sins were transferred to Him, and as we put our faith and trust in Him we are forgiven -- freely and fully. The Bible says, "God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins" (Colossians 2:13).

This is why we don't need to fear God's judgment once we have committed our lives to Christ, for now we've been cleansed of all our sins. We deserved God's judgment, for we were guilty of breaking His law -- but Christ took all our sins upon Himself, and He endured the judgment that we deserved. As the Bible says, "God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God" (2 Corinthians 5:21).

Why, then, must we still stand before God some day, even as believers? The reason is so God can reward us for what we have done for Him. The Bible doesn't explain in detail what those rewards may be -- but it reminds us that we are still accountable to Him for how we live. Our greatest reward, however, will be to hear Him say, "Well done, good and faithful servant.... Come and share your master's happiness!" (Matthew 25:23).

Is your goal to serve yourself -- or to serve Christ? Make sure of your commitment to Him, and then put Him first in everything you do.

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
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Is Life After Death a Myth?

Q: You're free to have your own opinion, but as far as I'm concerned, once you're dead, that's it. When we die, we're no different from an animal lying dead by the side of the road. The only life we'll ever experience is the one we're living right now. Life after death is just a myth. -- L.Y.

A: Your letter deeply saddened me, because it means you are living without hope -- hope for this life, and hope for the life to come. Have you honestly faced how empty and meaningless this will make your life?

Right now, this may not bother you, because you're young, healthy and energetic (as you say elsewhere in your letter). But what will happen if something goes wrong -- if you have a serious accident, for example, or you lose your health, or someone you love abandons you? Or what will happen once old age creeps up on you, with all of its problems and disabilities? Then you'll be facing the future without any hope -- and that is a terrible thought. You'll be like those of whom the Bible speaks, who are "without hope and without God in the world" (Ephesians 2:12).

But life doesn't have to be this way! God loves you (even if you don't believe it right now), and He doesn't want you to live a hopeless life. This is why He sent His Son, Jesus Christ, into the world. By His death and resurrection, He opened heaven's door for us. In Christ there is hope!

I can't help but wonder, however, if your real problem is that down inside you want to run your own life, and you fear giving your life to Christ. If so, face it honestly, and by faith turn to Jesus Christ and discover the hope and peace He alone gives.

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.-----------
How Can I Get More Out of My Bible?

Q: I know I ought to read my Bible, and I try to, but I just can't seem to make much sense of it. How can I get more out of my Bible? Maybe I need one of those modern translations. -- Mrs. M.McC.

A: I'm thankful you want to read the Bible and hope you won't become discouraged or give up. The Bible is God's Word and He wants to use it to teach you what to believe and how to live.

Yes, I encourage you to obtain a reliable modern translation of the Bible. (Your local Christian bookstore can help you select one.) Then set aside a definite time each day to be alone with God -- listening to Him speak to you through His Word, and also speaking to Him in prayer. It may be only a few minutes at first, but it will help you build your life on Christ.

How can you get more out of the Bible? First, start at the beginning of a book (e.g., Psalms, or one of the Gospels such as John), and read a portion each day. In other words, don't skip around or start at the very beginning of the Bible (like you would with most books), but concentrate instead on something that will be easier for you to understand. Before you begin, ask God to help you understand what you'll be reading and apply it to your life.

Then ask questions as you read. What is happening in this passage? What does it say about God, or Jesus, or how we should live? Most of all, what difference should it make in my life? Remember the Bible's admonition: "Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says" (James 1:22). Build your life on God's Word -- beginning today.

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
----------
Will God Help a Single Mom?

Q: I wish someone had told me how hard it is to be a single mom. I thought getting a divorce would be the answer to all my problems but all it did was create bigger problems. I don't have a question, but maybe my letter will help someone avoid my mistakes. -- B.D.

A: Thank you for your letter -- and I too hope it will help someone who is heading down a wrong path in life to realize the consequences of what they're about to do. Almost nothing is harder than being a single parent, whatever the reason.

Why is this? What makes it so hard? One reason is that now you have no one you can turn to who will fully share your burdens and help you carry them. You must bear them alone -- and that's never easy. You also must bear life's financial burdens alone -- and that can be devastating. The Bible wisely says, "Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work" (Ecclesiastes 4:9).

My prayer is that you will turn your burdens -- and your whole life -- over to Jesus Christ. God loves you, and even when life seems to turn against us, He is with us and wants to help us. We are never alone when we know Christ. Jesus' invitation is for you: "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest" (Matthew 11:28). Invite Him to come into your life today.

Then ask God for wisdom to deal with the problems you face. Some churches, for example, have programs to help single moms get away for a few hours. Ask God also to make you the best mother you can be to your children. It's the greatest gift you'll ever give them.

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
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Did Jesus Ever Commit Sin?

Q: Did Jesus ever commit sin? No one is perfect, so I have a hard time imagining that He didn't sin, but I've also heard that Christians believe He was perfect. How was that possible? -- K.P.

A: If Jesus had only been an ordinary man like everyone else who ever lived, then you'd be right -- He, too would have been a sinner. No matter who we are, we all -- without exception -- commit sin and break God's law. As the Bible says, "There is no one who is righteous, not even one" (Romans 3:10).

But Jesus wasn't only a man. The Bible tells us that He was also divine -- that is, He was God in human form. In other words, Jesus was different from every other person who ever lived or ever will live, because He was both fully God and fully man. The eternal God came down from Heaven and became a man -- and that man was Jesus. The Bible says, "He is the image of the invisible God. . . . For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him" (Colossians 1:15,19).

There is only one thing that God cannot do, and that is commit sin -- and because Jesus was God, He could not sin. He could be tempted -- but He could not sin. Even His enemies admitted they could find no fault in Him (see John 8:46).

Why is this important? It's important for one reason: Only someone who was without sin could save us from our sins. And that is what happened when Jesus died on the cross: All our sins were transferred to Him, and He took upon Himself the judgment we deserve. Don't carry your burden of sin and guilt any longer, but open your heart to Jesus Christ and trust Him alone for your salvation.

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Is Believing Enough to Make it Happen?

Q: Someone loaned me a book which says that if you strongly believe something good is going to happen to you, then it will. Do you agree with this? The book seems very spiritual and even quotes the Bible some, although the author doesn't really say anything about Jesus. -- Mrs. E.G.

A: Although you don't mention the book's title, I hope you won't be misled by what it seems to be teaching. Nowhere in the Bible does God promise to give us anything we want, if we'll just believe strongly enough. What we want may not be God's will for us -- and God's will is always best.

Be on your guard also against any teaching that sounds good on the surface -- but leaves Jesus out of the picture. Why do some authors omit Him? I don't know the reason in this case, but often it's because they deny that our most basic problem is our sin, and believe instead that we have the power within ourselves to solve our problems. This appeals to our pride, and we don't like to admit that it's wrong.

But sin cuts us off from God, and it also weakens us and makes us unable to change our lives. Only Christ can take away our sins and change our hearts -- and He will, as we humble ourselves and turn our lives over to Him. The Bible says, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" (2 Corinthians 5:17).

Don't be misled by those who claim you can have spiritual power apart from God or Christ. Instead, by faith turn to Jesus Christ and commit your life to Him. Then begin following Him, and not those who urge you to take a different path.

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

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At What Age Does a Child Understand God?
Q: How old does a child have to be before they can understand who God is, and things like that? My husband thinks we ought to start bringing our 3-year-old boy to church, but I don't see any use in it, frankly. But I'm open to changing my mind. -- Mrs. P.McN.
A: It's a mistake to think that just because children can't understand everything about God, they can't understand something about Him. Jesus rebuked His disciples when they tried to keep children from Him -- and we shouldn't keep them away from Him either (see Mark 10:14).
What does a small child learn from being brought to church (or to a class at church designed for children)? First, they will learn that church is important to you. They may not realize why -- but they'll realize it's an important part of your life every week. You'll be setting an example for them that they'll never forget.
As they grow older, they'll also learn about the Bible and about Jesus. They'll realize that God loves them and wants to be their friend. They'll also understand that He makes a difference in our lives, and He wants us to turn away from bad things and do what is good. They'll profit too from books and Bible lessons designed for children their age.
The most important thing you can do, however, is to let your child see that Christ makes a difference in your life. Get a children's Bible storybook and read it to your son every day. Pray before meals, and pray with him also. Let the truths God has given us in the Bible guide your life as a parent, and "Teach them to your children... when you sit at home and when you walk along the road" (Deuteronomy 11:19).
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Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.
(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
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Post  Admin on Wed 16 Feb 2011, 5:45 pm

Does Praying For World Peace Help?
Q: I don't think it does any good to pray for world peace or our leaders or things like that. What good has it done? We have so many problems that we'll never solve them all, and prayer isn't going to change that. -- J.L.
A: I agree with you on one point: Our world does face a multitude of problems that seem almost unsolvable. But that should make us pray more, not less! We can't solve our problems on our own; we need God's help, and that's why we should pray.
I hope you'll stop and think about what you've written. What you're really saying is that God doesn't care what goes on in the world -- or if He does care, He can't do anything about it. But this isn't true. From one end of the Bible to the other we discover that God not only made us, but He deeply cares what happens to us. Evil is real, and so is human suffering. But God hasn't abandoned us -- and the proof is that He sent His only Son into the world to bring us back to Himself.
And God also intervenes in human affairs -- even when we don't realize it. The Bible says, "Surely the arm of the Lord is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear" (Isaiah 59:1). He responds as well to the prayers of His people -- which is why the Bible commands us to pray for our leaders (see 1 Timothy 2:1-4). How much worse would our world be if people didn't pray?
I urge you to face your own need of God, and humbly open your heart and life to Jesus Christ. Then pray for our leaders, that they'll have God's wisdom to deal with our problems.
========
Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.
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Post  Admin on Fri 31 Dec 2010, 3:25 pm

Can I Find Out What the Future Holds For Me?

Q: It's been a hard year for me, and I'd give almost anything to know what the new year has in store for me. How can I find out? A woman in our town claims to be able to tell your future, and I'm almost willing to give her a try. -- M.K.
A: I sincerely hope you won't go down this path. At best you'd simply be wasting your money -- and at worst you could find yourself getting entangled with occult spiritual forces that are enemies of your soul. The Bible warns us to avoid occult practices, and calls them "detestable to the Lord" (Deuteronomy 18:12).
Only God knows the future; no matter how hard we try, even our best efforts will only be guesses. But this ought to encourage you -- because if God knows the future, then you can trust your future into His hands! Wouldn't it be better to face the future with Him than without Him? God loves you, and you can trust His promise to be with you and guide you. The Bible says, "For I know the plans I have for you... plans to give you hope and a future" (Jeremiah 29:11).
Don't be deceived by those who claim to know the future, and don't be burdened by worry and anxiety about your future. Instead, ask Jesus Christ to come into your life and commit your future into His hands. Then ask Him to help you trust Him every day, and to live the way He wants you to live.
In addition, I urge you to seek out a church where you can grow in your faith, and have fellowship with people who can help you make right decisions about your future. You need them -- and they need you.
========
Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.
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Post  Admin on Sun 26 Dec 2010, 4:53 pm

What Difference Has Jesus Made?

Q: When the angels announced Jesus' birth, they said He would bring peace to the earth, didn't they? But we still have as many wars and conflicts as we've ever had, and I can't see that the world is getting any better. What difference has Jesus really made? -- J.McK.

A: Have you ever tried to imagine what the world would be like if Jesus Christ had never come? Thousands of hospitals and schools would never have been built; countless homeless shelters wouldn't have been opened; massive humanitarian efforts to help those affected by disasters and famines across the world would never have been undertaken.

But Jesus Christ hasn't just been behind efforts like this to make the world a better place. He also has brought hope and new life to countless individuals over the centuries since He walked on earth. I have never met a person who regretted giving his or her life to Jesus Christ -- nor will you. They've discovered through personal experience that Jesus' words are true: "I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full" (John 10:10).

Wars are a reality, and will be until the end of time. The reason is because down inside we all have a problem -- a problem that can be summed up in one word: sin. But Jesus Christ made it possible for our sins to be forgiven -- and more than that, He came to change our hearts from within.

Don't reject the peace Christ offers you: peace with God, peace in your heart, and even peace with others. Instead, let this [color:0cbf=#000]Christmas become the most significant of your life, as you open your heart and life to His transforming power and love.

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.

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Post  Admin on Wed 22 Dec 2010, 6:49 pm

Why Didn't the Devil Stop Jesus' Birth?
Q: Why didn't the devil try to stop Jesus from being born? After all, Jesus was coming into the world to turn people away from the devil's ways, wasn't He? -- K.D.
A: Yes, Jesus was coming into the world to turn people away from the devil's temptations. In fact, the Bible says, "The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil's work" (1 John 3:8).
And shortly after His birth, the devil did try to destroy Him. The devil's instrument was the king who ruled that area at the time, Herod the Great. You'll remember that when Jesus was born wise men from another country came to Jerusalem, asking where the new king had been born. They had been led there by the appearance of a special star, and they wanted to worship the new king. (You can read about them in Matthew 2:1-12.)
But when Herod heard this, he was filled with rage. If a new king was born, Herod might lose his throne -- and he had no intention of letting that happen. As a result, he ordered all the infants in Bethlehem to be killed, hoping to stamp out this threat to his power. But an angel warned Joseph to flee to Egypt, "for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him" (Matthew 2:13). Joseph obeyed, and the attempt by Herod (and Satan) to kill Jesus was thwarted.
Throughout Jesus' life, Satan did everything he could to stop Him -- and when Jesus was put to death, he thought he had won. But he hadn't, for Jesus Christ conquered sin and death and Satan by His resurrection from the dead. This Christmas season, thank God for Jesus Christ, and for the hope we have of eternal life through faith in Him.
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How Can We Tell Our Children Why We're Having a Lean Christmas?
Q: This has really been a tough year for us -- lost jobs, house in foreclosure, you name it. How can we explain to our children why they aren't going to get anything for Christmas? They're too young to understand all the problems we've had. -- Mrs. B.H.
A: I'm sorry for the struggles you and millions of others have been having because of the present economic crisis. We need to pray more for our leaders as they seek to find answers to these problems.
How can you explain this to your children? The best approach is to be honest with them -- not going into great detail, but simply doing what you can to help them understand why this Christmas isn't going to be lavish. It's not easy, I know; they see so much on television, and they hear so much from their friends about all the expensive gifts they hope to get. As a footnote, see if one of your local social service agencies (such as the Salvation Army) has a program to make gifts available to children in need.
But I also encourage you to make this Christmas special to them in other ways. Does your church have a Christmas program they'll enjoy? Can they help you decorate with ornaments they make, or help you bake something special for Christmas day ? And remember: The greatest gift we can give our children isn't a toy or new computer game, but our love.
Most of all, take time to teach your children about the greatest Christmas gift of all -- God's gift of His Son, Jesus Christ. He knows your struggles, for His family too was poor. But through Him we can become spiritually rich, because "for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich" (2 Corinthians 8:9).
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Was Jesus Born With a Halo?
Q: Most of the pictures about Jesus' birth that we get on Christmas cards show Him with a halo around His head. Why is this? Did He actually have a halo when He was born? -- Mrs. D.N.
A: The Bible doesn't tell us what Jesus looked like when He was born, nor does it say if people saw anything unusual about Him as an infant (such as a halo). Later on, artists often added a halo to their pictures of Jesus to signify His holiness and uniqueness.
What the Bible does tell us, however, is that Jesus' birth was absolutely unique -- for He was born of a virgin. This had been predicted centuries before, and it became a reality when the angel announced to Mary that she would be the bearer of God's Messiah. This filled Mary with amazement -- but her response to the angel showed the depth of her commitment to God's will: "I am the Lord's servant.... May it be to me as you have said" (Luke 1:38).
But more than that, Jesus' birth was unique because of who He was: God's only Son, sent from Heaven to save us from our sins. He wasn't simply a good person; He was God in human flesh! As God declared to Joseph, "You are to give him the name Jesus (a word meaning 'the Lord saves'), because he will save his people from their sins" (Matthew 1:21).
As we approach Christmas in just a few days, what does Jesus Christ mean to you? Don't let the tinsel and busyness of Christmas crowd out its true meaning, but open your heart and life to Jesus Christ and -- like the shepherds on that first Christmas night -- worship Him and give Him your life.
========



Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.
(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
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Post  Admin on Thu 16 Dec 2010, 1:46 pm

How Do We Know That Jesus Existed?
Q: Was Jesus a real person? How do we know He even existed? After all, no one was around to take His photograph or interview Him or anything like that. Maybe someone just made Him up. -- L.J.
A: You can be absolutely certain that Jesus wasn't a myth or the product of someone's imagination, but a real person. In fact, the details of His life and ministry are documented more thoroughly than those of any other person in the ancient world.
After all, shortly after His death and resurrection thousands of people in Jerusalem -- the city where He had been put on trial and executed by the Roman authorities -- became His followers. Would they have done so if no one had seen Him or heard Him, or even witnessed His death only a few weeks before? No, of course not. As Peter declared to the crowds there, "Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs ... as you yourselves know" (Acts 2:22).
Never forget, too, that from that point on Jesus' followers were willing to risk prison and even death because of their faith. Do men and women willingly die for something they know is a lie? No, they don't. They had heard Jesus teach and seen His miracles, and many of them had been witnesses of His resurrection.
But why have you asked this question? Is it because you're hoping to avoid Jesus and His claim on your life? Don't turn your back on Him, but face your need for God's forgiveness, and then repent of your sins and give your life to Christ. He alone could say, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me" (John 14:6).
(Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.)
(c)2008 BILLY GRAHAM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
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Aren't All Religions Essentially the Same?
Q: I don't think it makes any difference what religion we believe in, because in my opinion, all religions are equally true. They take different paths but they all lead to God. Why should I believe in Christianity instead of some other religion? -- A.L.
A: I don't doubt your sincerity, but have you actually thought about what you're saying? What you're really saying is that there isn't such a thing as truth, at least when it comes to religion. But we don't say that about anything else -- so why say it about God?
Let me explain. There are hundreds (even thousands) of religions in the world -- and if you study them carefully you'll soon realize that they contradict each other. Some say there are thousands of gods and goddesses; others say there's only one God. Some say there's no life after death; others say there is. Some say God isn't interested in us; others say He is. How can they all be true? The answer is -- they can't.
What makes Christianity different from all the other religions of the world? The answer can be summarized in two words: Jesus Christ. The Bible tells us that He wasn't just another philosopher or religious teacher; He was God in human flesh. Think of it: God became a man! This is what we celebrate at Christmas.
Do you want to know what God is like? Look at Jesus Christ as He is revealed in the pages of the New Testament. And when you do, you'll not only realize that He was God, but that He loves you and came to save you by giving His life for your sins. Open your heart to Christ today, and "Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free" (John 8:32).
========
Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.
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Post  Admin on Sat 14 Mar 2009, 10:39 am

Should I Throw a Baby Shower for My Unmarried Niece?
By Billy Graham,
Tribune Media Services
Q: My niece and her live-in boyfriend are having a baby in a few months, and she's hoping I'll put on a baby shower for her. Should I do it? She knows I'm a Christian and don't approve of them being unmarried, but I don't want her to think I'm self-righteous or unconcerned about her or the baby. - Mrs. V.W.

A: I don't know your situation, of course, and if other family members could help; I also know people can misunderstand our best intentions. But when my late wife, Ruth, faced similar situations, she always wanted to reach out to the person who was going down the wrong path and show Christ's love to them.

Have you ever thought about the people Jesus dealt with? He reached out to all kinds of people, including some who were living openly sinful lives. The woman He met in Samaria, for example, had had five husbands, and wasn't married to the man with whom she was currently living. But Jesus risked misunderstanding by talking with her in public - and her life was changed. (You can read about her in the fourth chapter of John). Later, some of His enemies claimed He must be "a glutton and a drunkard" because He was "a friend of tax collectors and 'sinners'" (Luke 7:34).

Pray for your niece; ask God also to give you an opportunity to share your concern about her unmarried status. Remind her that her child will be coming into a home that could fall apart at any moment (whether she realizes it nor not) because it lacks the commitment of marriage.

It also lacks a foundation in God's love.

Then ask God to help you reach out to her with His love - not just now, but in the months and years ahead. Her greatest need is Christ, and God can use you to point her to Him.

========

Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.


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