CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Christian Examiner) – Because Billy Graham turned 97 on Nov. 7, his mind has necessarily been occupied with his future in heaven. That is why he has written his last book, begun about two years ago, about heaven, hell, and eternity.
In the new book, Where I Am, Graham uses elegant, simple language to convey his knowledge about what heaven is.
"Heaven seems a mystery to many people," Graham writes. "They wonder if Heaven is above the lofty clouds, or if Heaven will come down to earth. When I am asked, 'Where is Heaven?' I simply answer: Heaven is where Jesus is."
Graham testifies about his confidence in his salvation. "[Jesus] told His disciples, 'I go to prepare a place for you ... that where I am, there you may be also!' So when my earthly life has ended and you wonder where I've gone, this will be the answer: I will be with Jesus—that's where I am."
CONCERN FOR AMERICA
In honor of his father's lifelong burden for America, Franklin Graham has announced three more stops on the Decision America tour in 2016, during which he will visit each of the 50 states to share his father's concern for America's survival.
"Nearly 40 years ago," writes Franklin Graham, "my father said something that is even more pressing today. 'Will America turn to God at this late hour, or will America continue on the broad road that leads to destruction?'"
Franklin Graham shares his father's fear that a solution is impossible without spiritual change. "He [Billy Graham] continued with chilling words: 'America is too young to die.'"
In the Decision America tour, Franklin Graham will "challenge Christians to take a stand, to get off the sidelines, and to get involved in the political process at all levels." The father and son pray for God to revive the nation.
In an interview promoting Billy Graham's book, Franklin Graham tells Fox News his father wanted to address Hollywood's incorrect portrayal of heaven. He didn't want "a misunderstanding of what heaven is" to persist.
An excerpt from chapter 21 of Where I Am contains a discussion of Nicodemus, what it means to be born again, an acknowledgement of the reality of hell, and Billy Graham's contentment to be going home.
Those who know Christ are not afraid to die. Death is not the grim reaper. Death to the Christian is "going home." No one who has died in the Lord would ever want to come back to this life. To depart and be with Christ, Paul said, "is far better" (Philippians 1:23). ... I have never known a man or woman to receive Christ and ever regret it.
Franklin Graham said because his father is getting ready to step through the portal of eternity, he is returning to some of the core teachings of Christianity he learned as a boy and shared with so many in his sermons over the years.
"Perhaps you have never bent your will to God's will and been born again," Graham said in his book. "You can do that now, for He desires that all be saved (1 Timothy 2:4). Right now you can make your decision for Christ and start on the road that leads to a heavenly home."
THE LAST BOOK
Franklin Graham called Where I Am his father's last book because he said Billy Graham does not have enough energy to begin another project when he has been working on this one since the age of 95. He wrote Where I Am entirely by himself.
Instead, Graham dwells on the hope he has for his own eternity and exhorts Americans to think about where they will spend eternity after their death.
"Jesus said in essence, 'You can be where I am, or you can be where I am not,'" Graham reminds us. "I pray you settle life's most important question: Where will you spend eternity?"