Billy Graham Passes Away at Age 99: Believed Gambling to be 'Deadly'

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Published on:
Feb/21/2018

Gambling is an addition that could very quickly destroy someone's life, says evangelist Billy Graham.

Just last year, at the age of 98, the Reverend Billy Graham wrote in his syndicated column:

"Eventually it takes over a person's life and destroys them - something people who favor legalized gambling are seldom willing to face.”

Today the world mourns the renowened televangelist, who passed away peacefully at the age of 99.

Graham, who long suffered from cancer, pneumonia and other ailments, died at his home in North Carolina, spokesman Mark DeMoss told the Associated Press.

His leadership summits and crusades in more than 185 countries and territories forged powerful global links among conservative Christians, and threw a lifeline to believers in the communist-controlled Eastern bloc. Dubbed “America’s pastor,” he was a confidant to US presidents from Dwight Eisenhower to George W. Bush, the AP wrote.

Graham acted as a counselor to presidents including his role as a confidant to US presidents from Dwight Eisenhower to George W. Bush.

“When he prays with you in the Oval Office or upstairs in the White House, you feel he’s praying for you, not the president,” former President Bill Clinton once said.

Born Nov. 7, 1918, on his family’s dairy farm near Charlotte, North Carolina, Graham came from a fundamentalist background that expected true Bible-believers to stay clear of Christians with even the most minor differences over Scripture. But as his crusades drew support from a widening array of Christian churches, he came to reject that view.

He joined in a then-emerging movement called New Evangelicalism that abandoned the narrowness of fundamentalism to engage broader society. Fundamentalists at the time excoriated the preacher for his new direction, and broke with him when he agreed to work with more liberal Christians in the 1950s.

Graham stood fast. He would not reject people who were sincere and shared at least some of his beliefs, Martin said. He wanted the widest hearing possible for his salvation message.

“The ecumenical movement has broadened my viewpoint and I recognize now that God has his people in all churches,” he said in the early 1950s.

In 1957, he said, “I intend to go anywhere, sponsored by anybody, to preach the Gospel of Christ.”

Graham will be buried next to his wife, Ruth, at the Billy Graham Museum and Library.

“I have been asked, ‘What is the secret?’” Graham had said of his preaching. “Is it showmanship, organization or what? The secret of my work is God. I would be nothing without him.”

- Jagajeet Chiba, Gambling911 (The Associated Press was used in this report)

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