Top critical review
God can and God will. God does the conversion. He converts whom He wishes. Faith without works is dead (James 2:14-26)
Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on December 24, 2017
I attended Mr Franklin Graham's Christian rally called "Hope" in Oslo a few weeks ago and became interested in the literature written by him and his father, Mr Billy Graham. With this short book or Christian tract, I was quite alarmed and pained to read phrases like "God can't unless...." in The Key to Personal Peace. What? Such an erroneous claim is a giant red flag of false doctrine preached by Mr Graham. People who believe that God is passively waiting in the wings waiting for the green light, or waiting outside the doors of human hearts to be let in cannot be further from the truth. Claiming salvation to anyone is conditional on human response is merely diminishing and insulting the power of the omnipotent God. The apostle Paul told us in Romans 3: 11-12 that "no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one." But God's grace is irresistible to whom He offers it to. He does not offer to all. Because He will never offer it to anyone who would reject Him. He will never knock on anyone's door if it will not be opened. Humans are all in a hopeless situation, damned to hell except for His grace, He will save those He will save, decided by Him. Yes, He has limited His atonement to His elect (read the books of Ephesians and Romans) whom He calls His sheep. He doesn't want any of His "sheep" to be lost or to perish. We are Christians and His sheep because we are His chosen not because we happened to read this book or the bible tract or stood forward during a Christian rally and followed the steps mentioned like making a magical incantation. Conversion is like Saul on his way to Damascus to kill more Christians, God stopped him on his path and turned him into the most influential apostle for the Christian church. Saul would have continued on his path of destroying Christian lives if God did not intervene. But God did. Because Paul has also been numbered as one of Gods sheep and Paul's name has always been in the book of life. A book with names of all the sheep written even before the foundation of time. Jesus does not force the issue with anyone when it comes to conversion and believing in him. Jesus himself understood that no one will be attracted to Jesus unless God draws the person to Jesus (John 6:44). The desire for God and for Christ does not well up in a person on its own. It happens because God willed it. It is a birth right and not something that can be earned. So what do we need good Christian men like Billy Graham for? By his exemplary biblical conduct and that of many other good Christians like his son Franklin who adhere faithfully to the bible and waver not in the face of changing society norms and morals. They are the salt and the beacon of holy light to the world to expose society's sin and decay. Shining forth to touch the lives of sheep in a positive manner and helping Christians to grow stronger who in turn would be salt and light to the world. Bringing a slice of heaven to all lives they touch. Like Jesus telling Peter to feed His sheep when Jesus is gone, Billy Graham's focus should be on His sheep. Leave the conversion to God because only God can and will and to whomever He desires. Jesus commanded all Christians to take part in the great commission to spread Christian love. Already mentioned, we do so by being the salt of the world. By our actions of Christian love (concrete actions stated in Matthew 25) the shallow and superficial world we live in can then fathom the great love and mercy of Christ. Action speaks louder than words. And by our love for one another, we are disciples of Jesus (John 13:34-35). Will these people who have seen or experienced love of Christ and the grace of God be drawn to Christ? Only God knows because God has long decided. Before the foundation of the world. God does not stoop to beg for your belief. Unbelievers may think they have rejected God's Grace. But can anyone reject anything that has never been offered to them? Many are called, but few are chosen (Matthew 22:14). We don't get to choose. God does the choosing. At the end of Franklin Graham's sermon and invitation to the audience to step forward, many did. But how many of these were chosen? Only God knows. So unbelievers and believers can keep their arrogance and accept the lot that is due to them.