Eyes Opened in Bangkok at Amazing Love Festival

By   •   January 19, 2019

On Saturday, the two-day Amazing Love Festival with Franklin Graham began in the bustling city of Bangkok, Thailand. More than 18,000 braved the city’s heavy traffic to hear the Gospel at the Bangkok International Trade & Exhibition Centre (BITEC). In addition to those who attended the Festival, there were more than 35,000 views of the event's live stream, spanning across 53 countries.
Greeting the crowd, Franklin Graham shared about his love for Thai food before telling of his greater love for Jesus Christ.
Along the streets of Thailand, there are multiple markets and vendors, drawing in both locals and tourists.
Similar to the custom of shaking hands, "sawasdee" (or hello) begins with hands together and head bowed in Thailand. It is often used when saying thank you or goodbye. That was the case in this picture, as a man who came forward with a decision for Christ received a booklet from one of the hundreds of prayer volunteers.
The night before the Festival began, twin brothers Dennis and Danny Agajanian played Gospel tunes and told locals about the Festival at a coffeehouse in the red light district. Seeking to give hope to those involved in sex trade, the BGEA held a banquet earlier in the week to help women in the industry know about the freedom offered in Christ.
Jumping across the stage, Hymn the Rapper inspired people around the room to get on their feet and clap in worship.
Shrines, superstitions and temples are all common in Bangkok, which is a predominantly Buddhist area. Among the hundreds of elaborate temples is the Wat Chaeng, or Temple of Dawn. Named after the Hindu god Aruna, some believe the religious site watches over Thai Buddhists from dawn to dusk.
A blind man plays music as he walks along the street. On Saturday, Franklin Graham spoke from Mark 10:46-52 about a blind beggar named Bartimaeus who repeatedly asked Jesus to have mercy on him. “Go your way; your faith has made you well,” Jesus responded. He was immediately healed, just as more than 2,000 people responded to the Gospel Saturday. "Outside of Jesus Christ, we are spiritually blind," Franklin said.
Dozens made up the choir and orchestra that filled the Festival stage. Years ago, Billy Graham's Crusades were notorious for their large choirs singing praises to God.
While in Bangkok, Franklin and his team participated in an Operation Christmas Child distribution with Samaritan's Purse, sharing the Gospel and passing out boxes filled with gifts to children in need. Every October, the Billy Graham Library hosts a Bikers with Boxes event to encourage communities to help those around the world.
Bangkok is the top destination city in the world, hosting millions of travelers each year.
The crowd enjoyed a variety of music genres during the evening—but each song held the focus on Christ.
Joining tuk tuks and motorcycle taxis on busy streets, bus after bus shuttled hundreds to the Festival.
While the majority of people who responded to the Gospel message on Saturday were middle-aged, many children also made a decision for Christ. Here, a prayer volunteer asks kids more about their faith and gives them materials to help them grow in Christ.
"You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart." —Jeremiah 29:13
Nearly 600 churches prepared and prayed over the Festival for months before its occurrence. More prayers were lifted up moments before Franklin was to speak in the country he first visited 44 years ago.
Long-tail boats sailed along the west side of the Chao Phraya River, the main river that stretches over 200 miles in Thailand.
A Thai woman praises God, letting His name "ever be" on her lips.
Multiple screens and speakers hung from the ceiling so even the people in the back could see and hear the music and the message, all proclaiming a God of love, forgiveness and second chances.
Passionately leading the orchestra in worship, this woman showed her heart at the event.
Decked with ornate architecture and statues, Bangkok is a place filled with rich cultural history.
“Is Jesus calling you?” Franklin asked the crowd alongside his interpreter. There’s no need to carry the burden of guilt, he added. “You can be set free.”
Following the event, a group gathered to pray for healing over a wheelchair-bound man. Will you continue to pray for Thailand, that the country will receive the ultimate healing and gift of Christ?