Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA)
In 1988 we contacted Mr. Billy Graham to explain to him that he was a false teacher and deceiving the people of this world through a false gospel. At that time we received a reply from his Executive Assistant Mr. Victor B. Nelson to inform us that Mr. Billy Graham was born again and we responded to the letter and his false claim on January 21, 1989. Our response has been published in the book A World Deceived on page 111 under the chapter Spiritual Blindness. For a better understanding of God's judgment and what it means to be Born of God we invite you to read the articles Judging ~ Born Again and Born of God listed on this website.
Mr. Billy Graham spent a lifetime preaching and spreading a false gospel, while stealing words from the Bible of which he had no knowledge. His wisdom was after the wisdom of man and the spirit of this world and not after God (1 Cor. 4-16).
Franklin Graham was the fourth of five children and the son of Billy Graham and wife Ruth Bell Graham. In 2000 he became the CEO of BGEA and the President in 2002. He is also the President of the International Relief Organization Samaritan's Purse.
He claims that in 1974 as a twenty two year old, he became a Christian in a hotel room while on a trip to Jerusalem. This is a false claim and this is not how a person becomes a Christian and a follower of Christ but rather what he claims is self-judgment and this is how the devil (his natural spirit) has transformed himself into an apostle of Christ (2 Cor. 11:13-15). For a better understanding on how a person becomes a Christian we invite you to read all of the pages and articles of this website.
Billy Graham, his son Franklin and members of their families were born in sin, separated from God and unless they repent and turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan (whose power they are under) unto God, they will die in their sin (Acts 26:18). This is also true for Ann Graham Lotz, the second daughter of Billy and Ruth Graham and founder of Angel Ministries. Some of their other children, who are involved in so-called Christian work, have also been deceived and serve a false Christ as well. The main purpose of the BGEA and the Samaritan's Purse is for their own gain and to swell their family coffers. Their claim that they help people in need is all in vain and their charity around the world does not help people with any spiritual needs.
This present world is Satan's Kingdom (Matthew 12:25-27) and the Graham's are servants thereof (John 8:34). Christ never even prayed for this world (John 17:9). We invite you to go to www.billygraham.org and you will be able to see for yourself who they pray for and how they focus on the earthquake victims now and then deceitfully encourage you to go to the link that says "donate". It is all an abomination in God's eyes.
Please find below a copy of information on the BGEA and Samaritan's Purse that was posted on the Internet. After reading it we ask you the question: Is this a ministry that is founded on the Word of God and the gospel of Christ or after the Spirit of this world? We will also explain how they have stolen the words Samaritan's Purse from the Bible.
TIM FUNK and AMES ALEXANDER, McClatchy Newspapers CHARLOTTE, N.C.
Concerns about his rising financial compensation during tough economic times have prompted evangelist Franklin Graham to temporarily give up future contributions to his retirement plans at the two Christian charities he leads.
As president of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Samaritan's Purse, he receives two full-time salaries and two retirement packages. Last year his total compensation from the two Christian ministries was $1.2 million. The size of Graham's total 2008 compensation -- $535,000 from Samaritan's Purse and $669,000 from Charlotte, N.C.-based BGEA -- drew questions from nonprofit experts. They doubted that one person -- even the energetic, globe-trotting Graham -- can do two full-time jobs when those positions are head of organizations that employ hundreds and spend hundreds of millions around the world.
As head of the Boone, N.C.-based Samaritan's Purse, Graham earned more last year than any other leader of an international relief agency based in the United States. That includes eight with larger budgets, according to data compiled by Guidestar, a group that monitors non-profits. Graham, 57, and his two boards of directors pointed out that most of his 2008 compensation came not from increases in his salaries, which have remained flat in recent years, but from accelerated contributions to his retirement. The boards said they were playing catch-up -- Graham received no retirement during his first few years at the two organizations -- and were hoping to satisfy his goal of working for free when he reaches age 70.
In addition, Graham and the boards said, nearly half of what he received last year from BGEA -- $300,000 -- was deferred retirement money that had been committed and reported over three previous years. Under new IRS rules, which have affected other nonprofit CEOs, the money had to be re-reported as a lump sum in 2008, the year Graham became vested. With that $300,000 -- plus accrued interest -- taken out, Graham's compensation at BGEA rose 21 percent in 2008, from $250,000 to $303,000. The median increase for CEOs of nonprofits in 2008 was 7 percent, according to an annual survey released last week by the Journal of Philanthropy.
Graham acknowledged last week that his compensation total "looks terrible" and that "people won't understand it." News of his pay hike also comes only months after BGEA laid off more than 10 percent of its staff. On Tuesday night, after nearly a week of fielding Charlotte Observer questions about it, he asked the heads of the two ministries' compensation committees to cut off contributions to his retirement plan "for the time being."
The evangelist and his wife, Jane, "are grateful to the (boards) for these contributions to my future retirement, but in the current economic climate I don't feel good accepting such retirement make-up provisions," he said in a statement e-mailed to the Observer.
Graham spokesman Mark DeMoss said "the (BGEA) compensation committee believes the overall compensation approved for Franklin was appropriate (and did not ask him to alter it), but Franklin believes the impression given by these somewhat unusual reporting procedures is not a good one. If or when the economic situation improves significantly he will consider accepting contributions to his retirement plan."
On Wednesday, Graham sent a memo to the two ministries' employees explaining his intention to halt contributions to his retirement plans. Samaritan's Purse, a group Graham has led since 1979, has funded his retirement for 2009, DeMoss said. So, he said, payments will be suspended for 2010. Graham's retirement payments for 2009 will be suspended at the BGEA, DeMoss said. Since 2005, BGEA revenue has fallen from $126 million to $93 million. Last year, the BGEA reported an 18 percent drop in revenue -- the result of a dip in the sales of products such as books and lower returns on endowment funds. Fifty-five layoffs followed in February. The BGEA consolidated some departments and outsourced housekeeping and groundskeeping.
Largely as a result of its financial challenges, it has gotten two out of a possible four stars from Charity Navigator, a group that measures how efficiently and effectively non-profits operate. Samaritan's Purse scored a four, the highest possible. Graham said the BGEA cuts were part of a restructuring that amounted to good stewardship of donations. "We saved almost $1 million," he said. Revenues climbed last year at Boone-based Samaritan's Purse. Rick Cohen, a charity watchdog who writes for Non-Profit Quarterly, said Graham's compensation increase in dire times for non-profits offers the wrong message. "It sends a signal to the public," he said, "that is not representative of what the (non-profit) sector is facing."
At Samaritan's Purse, Graham's compensation grew about 3 percent from 2007 to 2008.
Still, his total compensation of $535,000 was higher than the $421,000 paid to the president of World Vision International, a relief agency with a budget four times as large.
According to a joint statement last week by the boards at Samaritan's Purse and BGEA, Graham's pay and retirement were "researched and approved by our respective compensation committees, along with an opinion from an outside compensation expert as to reasonableness."
The 21-member BGEA board includes Graham and five members of the Graham family -- father Billy, son Will, sister Anne Graham Lotz, her husband Denton Lotz, and cousin Melvin Graham -- but none is a member of the compensation committee, DeMoss said.
The two boards, in their statement, also saluted Graham for his leadership, service and the "effective ministry he directs around the world."
Both organizations spend millions to evangelize and help people in need at home and abroad. Both recently sent rapid response teams to the Atlanta area to aid and counsel families victimized by flooding. At Samaritan's Purse, Graham champions Operation Christian Child, which sends millions of shoeboxes filled with gifts to needy children around the globe, and will leave next week for trips to North Korea and China.
And, like his world-famous father, Graham gives sermons at frequent crusades -- he calls them festivals -- around the country and the world. In September, he held a festival in Colombia, and, over the summer, staged "Rock the River" -- a series of rock concerts and sermons for young Christians living in cities along the Mississippi River.
Some charity watchers said they know of no other instance where one person leads two separate organizations. And they wondered whether it was possible to effectively do so.
"It's a very strange and somewhat unique situation ... and it raises questions," said Ken Berger of Charity Navigator, the nation's largest evaluator of non-profits. Pablo Eisenberg, a senior fellow at the Georgetown Public Policy Institute said: "How can you do two full-time jobs at the same time? It's outrageous." Noelle Barton, manager of special projects at the Journal of Philanthropy, said she couldn't think of another example in her newspaper's annual survey of nonprofit leaders' compensation of one person wearing two CEO hats. "It's definitely not the norm," she said. "They're big jobs."
Graham spokesman DeMoss pointed out that if BGEA and Samaritan's Purse were to merge -- an idea that has never been seriously considered, he said -- the resulting organization would be the 33rd largest nonprofit in the United States.
"So, there would be 32 non-profits bigger," DeMoss said. "You could ask how one person could run the Salvation Army, which has a budget of $1 billion."
Asked about how he juggles the positions, Graham said, "You work a little bit all the time. It's not a 9-to-5 job." He said he often works into the night at his Samaritan's Purse office in Boone, works every weekend and works at his home, "answering phone calls, thinking about it, strategizing." DeMoss estimated Graham spends five or six days every month at his BGEA office in Charlotte.
"The BGEA had about a 40- to 50-year history and track record before Franklin took over," DeMoss said. "He didn't have to invent the wheel or create the ministry. He's giving leadership to it." And because of the nature of the BGEA -- a ministry named for his father -- leadership doesn't just mean management, DeMoss added. "The other role is preserving the vision and mission.... It's very important that a Graham carry that out."
In last week's interview, Franklin Graham told the Observer that money is not what drives him. He said it was one board, then the other, that kept insisting, as he moved from his 30s to his 40s and now 50s, that they had to move aggressively to provide for his retirement after starting late. It wasn't until his sixth year at Samaritan's Purse, for example, that the board started a 401(k) for him, DeMoss said.
When Graham became president of BGEA, "it was awkward," Graham said. "I already had a salary (from Samaritan's Purse). They felt it was important to pay something." That first year, 2002, his compensation was $85,000. Graham said the $300,000 in deferred retirement he had to re-report gives a falsely inflated impression of how much his compensation has grown. He said he worried that it could put off donors and other supporters of his ministries. "Nothing's been done that's bad," he said. "It's a perception issue -- but in the nonprofit world, you have to be careful of perceptions." Instead of adopting the deferred retirement plan at BGEA, he added, it would have been better "to take a bonus every year." But Graham said he has always felt overpaid. "I enjoy and love what I do," he said. "It's not a job, it's a calling - I'd do it for nothing."
Franklin Graham's role: President and CEO.
His total compensation in 2008: about $535,000.
Number of employees: 477.
2008 revenue: $309 million.
2008 expenses: $295 million.
BILLY GRAHAM EVANGELISTIC ASSOCIATION
Franklin Graham's role: President.
His total compensation in 2008: about $669,000.
Number of employees: 490.
2008 revenue: $93 million.
2008 expenses: $108 million.
Let us go back now to our earlier question: Is this a ministry that is founded on the Word of God and the Gospel of Christ or after the spirit of this world? The answer is an unequivocal "No". It is not founded on the teachings of the Word of God and the Gospel of Christ but after the spirit of this world (1 Cor. 2:4-16). Their world-wide crusades are a deception and have brought not one person a step closer to the wisdom and knowledge of God. You can walk to the infield during every crusade conducted by the Graham family for the rest of your life and donate all of your money but that won't change your spirit.
Mankind does not have the ability to transform people, only God has the power to reveal Himself to mankind and is the only One that is able to open your eyes to the truth (Matthew 16:17; 1 Cor. 2:10; Gal.1:12). For a better understanding of this we invite you to read the article You Need Not That Any Man Teach You listed on this website.
In summary: the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association does not share God's love but the love of this world. They walk in darkness and according to the spirit of this world. We know that they do not have the love of God in them (John 5:42). The scriptural messages they use in the form of snippets from the Bible are strictly for the purpose to collect money from the people and are stolen from the Bible (John 10:1), including the words Samaritan's Purse.
On their website they deceitfully ask you to donate $25- $50-$100- Other. This is their only goal and purpose to build their empire and family fortune. Fill out the forms and send us your money. Once they have you on their mailing list, their letters asking you for donations are without ceasing. The worst of it all is that they convince you that you are a child of God, while in truth you are separated from God and a child of the devil (Acts 13:10; 2 Tim. 2:24-26). To give you a better understanding how this whole world has been deceived and who is deceiving you, we invite you to read the articles The Mystery Babylon and False Apostles and False Christs listed on this website.
We will explain now how they have stolen the words Samaritan's Purse from the Bible. The Bible is a spiritual book that the natural man is unable to understand as the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him (1 Cor. 2:14). Even Bible schools, seminars, universities and theology classes cannot teach spiritual discernment. As explained earlier, it can only be revealed by God. Their teachings and doctrines are all in vain. The religions of this world discern the Bible in a natural way. To them it is like a story book. So, we will explain the parable of the Good Samaritan according to the Spirit of God, so you will be able to understand the difference between darkness and light, which is spiritual discernment (1 Cor. 2:14).
Christ had a habit of speaking in parables so the disciples asked him: Why speakest thou in parables? He answered and said unto them: Because it is given to you to know the mysteries of the Kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand (Matthew 13:10-13).
The thieves that are mentioned in the parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:29-36) are all those who have stolen the words from the Bible as referred to in John 10:1-13. These are the religious leaders of this world. The garment is the spiritual garment that they strip off their followers, as described in Matthew 9:16 and 22:11-13. Yes, a priest was the first one that saw the spiritually wounded man and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. The priests from two thousand years ago and the religious leaders of today are spiritually blind. And likewise a Levite, who were those who were charged with the temple service, similar to the deacons or assistants in the churches of today. Yes, they too passed by on the other side as they are spiritually blind and leave people spiritually wounded. The Samaritans were considered a reproach to the Jews and the Samaritan mentioned in the parable describes those that are called by God to help people spiritually, in the same way our ministry reaches out to all those that are spiritually wounded.
Are we a reproach? All of God's servants are very much treated like the reproach of society. As confirmation how God's servants are treated by the people of this world we invite you to read Matthew 5:10-12; John 15:18-21; Acts 2:23 and Revelation 17:6; 18:24.
Like the work of the Samaritan, our work is for free as was the work of Christ and the apostles and we also will assist all those during their journey of repentance on the small and narrow road back to God. In twenty six years of service we have never charged anyone for our spiritual guidance and we have never requested or collected a penny from anyone. You may consider that also one of the mysteries of God.
If God is able to look after a host of two million people for forty years while travelling through the desert, surely He is able to look after His own people (the believers) who live in this present world! Can you imagine if God chose someone today to take two million people on a journey through the remote deserts of Southern- California or Arizona that under normal circumstances would only have taken eleven days but because God needed more time to transform them, their leader would take them on a forty year journey as directed by God. Can you imagine being the leader of such a host? Think of the ramifications of being in the desert with two million people for forty years with nothing but the grace of God.
The natural person being separated from God would not last through the first day and night. Without faith in the living God for provisions, they would probably die within a week, as they service unto them which by nature are no gods (Gal. 4:8). Their would not even be enough time to organize a religious gathering or a crusade and have people walk to the infield and sing songs, as God does not heareth sinners (John 9:31). Their prayers would be all in vain also, as they preach for doctrines the commandments of men (Matthew 15:9).
Matthew 6:26. Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?
Trust us the above story of the journey through the desert is a true story that took place just a little over three thousand years ago. It is a story that still takes place today and is like the journey of repentance that God takes every believer on, that will submit to Him for the transformation and renewal of their minds (Romans 12:1,2). God is the only one that can help you to overcome the spirit of this world (1 John 5:4,5). It is a very difficult journey and described as a very narrow road, which only few are able to find (Matthew 7:14). Don't take the journey lightly as it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God (Hebrews 10:31). Jesus Christ himself also warned the believers of the false prophets that come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. He further said that ye shall know them by their fruits (Matthew 7:15-21). All of this, we have attempted to explain in this article.
For a better understanding of the journey of repentance we invite you to read the articles What is Sin? - Repent - Victory Over Sin listed on this website.
The BGEA leaves people spiritually wounded, while they use their worldly ministry to steal from all those foolish enough to donate money. The international Relief Organization Samaritan's Purse does not provide for those in need with the Living Bread and Living Water (Jesus Christ) that is able to bring salvation to the people of this world. Franklin Graham's latest project to produce an album with Michael W. Smith to aid the people in Haiti is in vain also. Money cannot help the people in Haiti. As we have already explained in other articles, if there had been only one righteous person in the eyes of God in all of Haiti, the whole island would have been saved, so it is for the people in Chile.
Don't cry for the people of Haiti and Chile but rather weep for yourself, your children and children's children.
We will close with the same words that we used in the closing of our earlier letter to the BGEA of January 21, 1989.
"You most certainly will fall and so will the nation of the USA and all the nations of the world. Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell. Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets and wise men, and scribes; and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city (Matthew 23:33,34)".
Matthew 10:26. Fear them not therefore: for there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid that shall not be known.
In the love and service of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Andy & Dianne van den Berg