Thursday, June 14, 2007

Ruth Graham heads home

MONTREAT, N.C. -- Ruth Graham, who surrendered dreams of missionary work in Tibet to marry a suitor who became the world's most renowned evangelist, died Thursday. She was 87. Graham died at 5:05 p.m. at her home at Little Piney Cove, surrounded by her husband and all five children, said a statement released by Larry Ross, Billy Graham's spokesman.

"Ruth was my life partner, and we were called by God as a team," Billy Graham said in a statement. "No one else could have borne the load that she carried. She was a vital and integral part of our ministry, and my work through the years would have been impossible without her encouragement and support.

"I am so grateful to the Lord that He gave me Ruth, and especially for these last few years we've had in the mountains together. We've rekindled the romance of our youth, and my love for her continued to grow deeper every day. I will miss her terribly, and look forward even more to the day I can join her in Heaven."

Ruth fell into a coma yesterday. There had been some debate about whether she would be buried with Billy in Charlotte or in the mountains, but it seems she decided to stand behind her husband. More from the Associated Press.


Bill Reichart said...

Here is a heads up, Ruth Graham's official memorial site:

Bill from ProvocativeChurch said...

It’s truly appalling that a person so respected for supposed Biblical knowledge would show so little thereof by declaring that his wife “had a great reception in heaven.” Although we understand that this must be a difficult time for him, we need to maintain a clear discerment even in moments of pain.

Not only is the belief that people go to heaven when they die grossly foreign to the Bible, it also shows how much modern Protestantism is close to Catholicism and far from its ideal of restoring biblical truth to Christianity.

NOWHERE does the Bible teach the immortality of the soul, this is greek philosophy originated in Plato which infiltrated Christianity. Jesus taught that dead people are sleeping (read his resurrection miracles), not floating to heaven or being punished somewhere.

Furthermore, the immortality of the soul totally contradicts a belief in the resurrection. If people are already in heaven, why in the world would they have to come back and resurrect when Jesus comes back to Earth?? It makes absolutely no sense. How much can we learn by simply reading the Bible plain as it is!!

People should stop worshipping these Star Pastors and their erroneous teachings and return to simple Biblical truth. Billy Graham is misleading people and his teachings are actually DANGEROUS!

Sola scriptura PLEASE!! For more information, visit

aza said...

Furthermore, reputable theologians from all faiths have questioned the immortality of the soul because it’s unbiblical. It’s easy to call this heretical or cult doctrine when we listen to tradition and do not search for Biblical truth. If you’re able to refute the texts below Jack, I’ll become a believer!

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a faithful believer in HEAVEN and believe that Christ is preparing mansions even as we blog, as he promised in John 14:1. The problem is, when does HEAVEN happen and how does the Bible’s eschathology fit in?

I believe the problem lies with the belief in the immortality of the soul. The Bible has many references to the state of the dead as being a sleep and a state of unconsciousness. The verses below substantiate that.

*Death was considered by Jesus to be a sleep; (John 11)

*Solomon said, “The dead know nothing” (Ecc 9:5-6). ‘The dead praise not the Lord’ (Psalm 115:17). If they are in heaven then they sure are not praising the Lord there! Absurd!

*Jesus continues: “Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep. (John 11:11-14). If Lazarus was already in Heaven, why did Jesus bother to bring him back to life? I’m sure Lazarus did not like the idea…

*Paul also agrees by saying that Jesus “has already been resurrected and become “the firstfruits of those who SLEEP”. Elsewhere he says, ‘The Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, … and the dead in Christ shall rise … and so shall we ever be with the Lord’ (1.Thessalonians 4:16, 17).

*There’s plenty in the Bible about Jesus coming back, the resurrection of the righteous, the millenium in Heaven and the New Earth. Revelation is full of references of the reward of the righteous, AFTER the Resurrection when Jesus comes, not immediately AFTER death.

It’s a far cry to state that Paul was talking about the immortality of the soul when he said: “We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.” (2 Corinthians 5:8). Would he lie and contradict himself when he said the dead are sleeping waiting for the resurrection? Hardly. He wished he could just leave the flesh that tied him to this world to be with God, with a glorified body. “Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed — in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. 1 Corinthians 15:51-2

Other people have mentioned the PARABLE of the rich and Lazarus to prove that the some dead are in hell and some are in heaven. If this is a literal story, then all of its aspects must be true, Heaven is right next door to hell, so much so that people can jump to either place. Jesus was using a story from the time to teach another important lesson about the fact that salvation must be decided when people are living, not after they die.

Ultimately, the “immortality of the soul”as preached by Billy Graham and other major pastors excludes the need for the resurrection. Furthermore, it annuls the hope that I need today to overcome death once and for all when Jesus returns. It also gives me a false comfort that my loved ones are in heaven with God when the Bible clearly teaches that they’re just sleeping waiting for the return of Christ and the final judgment.

And that is precisely the problem I have with Billy Graham’s statement. As a man known for his commitment to Scripture, shouldn’t he be pointing to be blessed hope of resurrection promised by Jesus to those who were faithful? ‘The Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, … and the dead in Christ shall rise … and so shall we ever be with the Lord’ (1.Thessalonians 4:16, 17).

He is one of the champions of this doctrine and people are being seriously misled.

Thanks for the discussion!
God bless!