“God’s Word is the same in Africa, Europe, America and Asia.” As Franklin Graham uttered these powerful words Saturday night, a crowd of more than 14,000 shouted their joyful agreement. “God’s Word is truth,” he added with emphasis.
Preaching about the prodigal son from the Gospel of Luke, Graham shared the story of his own salvation. “Being Billy Graham’s son didn’t save me. I got sick and tired of being sick and tired of my sin.”
Relating parts of his life to that of the prodigal son, Graham described the moment he dropped to his knees at the age of 22 to accept Christ as his Savior.
He then asked the crowd if they felt broken, empty, lost or alone. “What is your need tonight? You may be in the middle of a spiritual famine. But tonight you can be filled with the love of Jesus Christ.”
One woman who was raised in a Muslim home decided she wanted to experience that love. Accepting Jesus on Friday night, she went home and was asked to leave by her family.
After returning to the Festival Saturday with her daughter, the woman was embraced by caring counselors who helped the two find shelter and will connect them with a local church.
Setting Captives Free
When 22-year-old Ibrihim heard Franklin Graham speak about the depravity and subsequent repentance of Manasseh from the book of 2 Kings 21 Friday night at the All Liberia Life Festival, he fell to his knees.
There was much of the king’s story that resonated in his heart. “My mother and my father were both killed during the war here,” he said with tears wetting his cheeks. “I was alone and on the streets, so I turned to sorcery like Manasseh. And I tried to kill someone,” he added quietly.
In this nation torn apart by two civil wars that raged between 1989 and 2003, Ibrihim’s story is not uncommon. Forced to fend for themselves, many young men and women lived in ways that some now regret: murder, rape and robbery ruled during the war.
But, as Franklin Graham pointed out, such sins taint all of humanity. Rebellion, addictions, jealousy? Every person struggles with some sort of bondage. “The good news is that Jesus Christ came to set you free,” Graham told the crowd of 20,800 filling Samuel Doe Stadium just outside Monrovia.
In addition to sharing Manasseh’s story of renewal, Graham spoke of an experience he had while preaching at a prison in Nicaragua. “One man who came forward told me that while he will have to be in that prison for life, he was just set free.”
The one-two punch knocked Ibrihim to his knees. “I want to know this God of the Bible,” he said. “I want to have another Father and find freedom.”
Ibrihim wasn’t alone. More than 2,800 Liberians ran forward when Graham told them it was time to make a decision for Christ. So many people swarmed the field that counselors prayed with inquirers in small groups of three or four.
As we prepare for two more nights in Liberia, continue to pray. “This is the power of the Gospel,” said Graham. “It can set a man’s heart free and God wants that for each and every person in Liberia.”
WATCH THE FESTIVAL WEBCAST: Join us on March 29 to see and hear Franklin Graham’s message, music and other highlights from the All Liberia Life Festival. Get more details »